CAEP’s Kim Worthington to speak at Burman Business Speaker Series

Talk will focus on connecting entrepreneurs to economic development strategies

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Burman University’s Business Speaker Series is continuing with Kim Worthington — executive director of the Central Alberta Economic Partnership (CAEP).

“CAEP is one of nine economic develop alliances in partnership with the Government of Alberta,” Worthington said. “We were developed back in 1998, so this our 20th anniversary and we are excited about that.”

The talk, which will run on Nov. 27th at 7 p.m. at McKibbin Centre at Burman University, will focus partly on how CAEP supports their 35 member municipalities in Central Alberta.

“It is about 40,000 km that we cover and we represent over 300,000 people,” Worthington said. “Our mandate is to empower member municipalities and member communities to advance sustainable, regional economic development at the local level.

“We work strategically to create a better environment for local municipalities and working to increase and advance their economic capacity.”

The main levers that CAEP pulls is providing tools, resources, training and education on how government supports economic development at each level.

“Burman University is an associate member (of CAEP) and I’ll be talking about the link between economic development and entrepreneurs,” she said. “We will be talking primarily to their business students and how blossoming, emerging entrepreneurs can utilize municipalities and economic developers specifically to support their entrepreneurial endeavors.”

One thing that is important for new business owners is that municipalities have tools that can help their business grow

“Most entrepreneurs are specialized in what they are doing — they are not specialized in governmental processes, which are required,” Worthington said. “An economic development officer can act as their advocate and their support when they are working through those processes. They can also act as a connector to other businesses.”

For members of the public, Worthington said there will be plenty to learn including how municipalities retain, expand and attract businesses.

“They can take away information on how the informal economy can impact the formal economy and they will get an understanding of the levels of economic development — local, regional, provincial, national and international,” she said.

”They will become aware of some of the programs that the Government of Alberta has to support entrepreneurship.”

Tickets are free and can be reserved at www.burmanu.ca/speakerseries.



todd.vaughan@lacombeexpress.com

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