COMMUNITY SPOTLIGHT: FINDLAY
From Ohio Business Growth Guide 2024
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Findlay

Harnessing the Findlay Formula

COMMUNITY SPOTLIGHT: FINDLAY
Downtown Findlay, Ohio.
Phot courtesy of VisitFindlay.com

by RON STARNER
A

city of 40,000 people on I-75 in northwest Ohio has made a name for itself as a manufacturing mecca in the Midwest. Findlay in Hancock County has bested all micropolitan areas in the U.S. for 10 years running by landing more corporate facility deals than any other small town.

Its success has become so predictable that the town has trademarked “The Findlay Formula.” Wanting to get a better understanding of this secret recipe for economic development achievement, we turned to Findlay Mayor Christina Muryn.

Findlay has a track record of economic development success. Site Selection Magazine has named it the top-performing small town in the nation for 10 straight years. What are the factors behind this?

MAYOR CHRISTINA MURYN: We are a community of problem-solvers. We find a way to say yes. When a business has a problem, we come together to solve it. People know from the start that we are a team. Whether it is the Planning Department or another office, our teamwork gives people confidence that when they come to us, we will get the job done. With Sheetz, the city stepped up with infrastructure. The GVS project is an existing business from Italy that is expanding and making Findlay their North America headquarters. They supply the N95 mask for the national stockpile. We provide a stable environment where people can reinvest. It is not flashy, but we know how to get the job done. 

Findlay and Hancock County have made workforce development a priority for many years. Can you share any best practices?

MURYN: We established a Workforce Coalition and raised the bar. We have our business community leading the conversation about what our city will need in the future. By working with our businesses, that helps us in the long run. We are not only addressing the current needs; we are making sure we have the talent employers will need in the future. 

How does Findlay's location on the I-75 corridor help?

MURYN: I-75 is critical for our community. We have great accessibility for products going to market and components coming in. From a community access standpoint, we have proximity to metro areas that have amenities we do not have. We have access to Detroit, Toledo, Dayton, Columbus and Cleveland. We are a draw because we are so easy to get to. Within 100 miles of Findlay are the airports of Detroit, Toledo, Fort Wayne, Cleveland, Columbus and Dayton.

What is your town's best-kept secret?

MURYN: I will give you two options. One is Japan West. It is a fabulous restaurant. The other is the Mazza Museum on the campus of the University of Findlay. It is the world’s largest collection of children’s picture book art. Pop-up artwork books are on display here. It is a cool facility; and it expanded recently to include a STEAM center. It is free and a lot of fun. 

What are some of your community's best quality-of-life attributes?

MURYN: We have a number of beautiful parks along the river, and we have neighborhood pocket parks. We have a beautiful downtown with lots of bars and restaurants and an arcade. Our community is easy to navigate; and we offer safety and accessibility.

Ron Starner
Executive Vice President of Conway, Inc.

Ron Starner

Ron Starner is Executive Vice President of Conway Data, Inc. He has been with Conway Data for 22 years and serves as a writer and editor for both Site Selection and the company's Custom Content publishing division. His Twitter handle is @RonStarner.

  





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