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■ Community Profile: LYNCHBURG


“When one of us grows, we all grow,” says Dennis Jarvis II, Altavista’s economic development director.


Coming together W


Communities unite to develop the area’s economy by Heather B. Hayes


hen Standard Insurance Co. was looking for a site for a new East Coast operations center, Lynchburg


and Altavista made the short list — even though they are only about 20 miles apart. “That was no accident,” says Bob Speltz,


senior director of public affairs for Portland, Ore. – based Standard, a 110-year-old insur- ance and financial services company. “We knew that there would be a great pool of highly skilled, loyal talent to draw from within the region, and we felt like it offers an ideal quality


70 JANUARY 2017


of life, which is so important to attracting and retaining the very best folks in the marketplace.” Economic development officials in both


localities did their best to win the project, but the competition wasn’t a zero-sum game. As long as one of them landed the deal,


then the whole region stood to gain, says Den- nis Jarvis II, Altavista’s economic development director. “When one of us grows, we all grow,” Jarvis


states. “Cars are bought. Houses are bought. Goods and services are acquired. We do our


Photos by Jill Nance Waugh


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