Andrew Kaduk made the following comment to my post "Fort Wayne Problems." Andrew Kaduks comment is posted in its entirety and is in italics!
My reply to Andrew is in red. I am afraid I am going to go on a rant...
Let's build a quick hypothetical here:
I love hypotheticals...
I want to open a light manufacturing firm building circuit boards for communications electronics. I will employ 4 SMT techs, 10 electronic engineers, an 8-man sales staff, a 4-man shipping department, and a hybrid admin/customer service department.
I would love to see a company like this come to Fort Wayne! Maybe a bunch of the "young professionals" who will flock to Fort Wayne if we build a new single A baseball stadium will start this hypothetical company (A little sarcasm for you Andrew).
That's 30 jobs ranging from $25k to $125k per year.
OK, I will assume your salaries are correct.
I will need bright, young, creative engineers and salespeople, not some hayseed hicks that got suckered into giving Employment One $175 dollars...
Are you saying that people from rural backgrounds are not bright, young, and creative? Do you think that the only people who are bright, young, and creative come from urban areas?
This is quite possibly one of the dumbest comments I have heard during the entire Harrison Square discussion and it is deserving of the rant that follows!
I spent my first nine years on a farm a few miles outside of Albany, Indiana. Then we moved to Fort Wayne and I lived here until I was 22 years old. I guess I must be a "hayseed" according to Andrew Kaduk!
Heck, I will use myself as an example and I would be happy to compare my background with yours or with that of some of the other people who think that a single A baseball stadium being built downtown will draw a lot of high paying jobs to Fort Wayne.
Lets see I have spent:
4 years in sales (Some of this time I also pumped gas at a station on the south side of
Fort Wayne and worked as a uniformed security guard for minimum wage)
6 years as an Electronics Technician in a naval nuclear power plant on a nuclear powered
submarine. Heck, I was the only enlisted man in Hawaii who was qualified Engineering
Watch Supervisor as an E-5 in Hawaii during 1994 and 1995. Oh yes, naval nuclear A
school and naval nuclear power school were ranked as the 2nd and 3rd most difficult
college level programs in America (Behind MIT) when I attended them.
3 years as an electrician in a steel mill. I am a card carrying Journeyman electrician.
1 year as an automation technician in a food processing plant.
4 years as the Maintenance Manager in a local factory.
3 years in a public accounting firm.
Lets see I currently have a fair amount of education for a "hayseed" to go along with my work experience:
I currently have 239 college credits from various institutions of higher learning.
I have a Bachelors degree and multiple Associates degrees.
I am a member of a couple of national honors societies.
I am waiting on my paperwork to be filed and I will be a Certified Public Accountant.
As an adult I have worked as:
A salesman, pumped gas at a Fort Wayne gas station, worked as a uniformed security
guard in Fort Wayne, an Electronics Technician, an operator in a civilian nuclear
power plant, an electrician in a steel mill, an electrician in a foundry, an automation
technician, a maintenance manager, and as an accountant.
I have lived and worked in eight states as an adult and I have travelled to about 20
different countries and a couple of US Territories. I have been to the actual North Pole
and I have been in six of the worlds major oceans.
My wife and I are currently shopping for a commercial building which we will be
purchasing; not leasing I think that we will hire half a dozen employees in this area in
the next few years... We will run a business and Fort Wayne and I have confidence that
we will be a successful small company.
Now do not get me wrong; I am not the smartest guy in the world, I am not particularly creative; however, I am not a "hayseed" and you are displaying extreme and unmitigated ignorance if you think that there are not a lot of bright and educated individuals in Fort Wayne.
You should spend some time at ITT, IPFW, Ivy Tech, and the like. You may find some bright young professionals if you look for them...
How am I going to find those 20 employees here? There is absolutely nothing to draw people like that to Fort Wayne unless they like one-story strip malls and Wal Mart.That being said, how in the hell is Fort Wayne supposed to attract businesses like this? These are the types of businesses that make our economy strong...without providing some legitimate features and benefits that would interest young, smart, marketable people, there can't be a talent pool here deep enough to even get employers to look our way. Employees like these are in demand all over the country...
There are a lot of people in Fort Wayne who can fill these jobs. Fort Wayne has a large number of engineers and the various other skills that this small company would require. We have had a lot of companies like you described here for many years and we have a large number of people who could fill these jobs. A lot of companies similar to the one you described have went out of business in this area, there are literally hundreds of people in this area who could work for the company you described. Heck, with my background I would have the qualification necessary to fill many of the above jobs myself.
Also there is a large number of facilities this company could rent and rent or lease for a very low price! There is a lot of commercial space available and it is very inexpensive.
I'd like for Mike or AWB to explain to me in writing how you suggest we make our bait look better than that being offered in other places. THAT is what this discussion is about...a viable, fun, vibrant city that can be attractive to the kind of talent that makes businesses successful, innovative etc.
I do not think that we have to have a vibrant City. I think we have to have a City with lower taxes and fewer regulations. This will cause companies to move to Fort Wayne and expand in Fort Wayne. To be honest with you Andrew Fort Wayne has about everything that my wife and I want in a City. We occasionally travel to Indianapolis, Chicago, etc if there is something we want to do that is not available in Fort Wayne. Heck we are going to Germany this summer. Fort Wayne does not need to have every possible amenity; I am more then capable of driving or flying to other locations...
Building a new Single A Baseball Stadium Downtown does NOTHING to draw jobs to Fort Wayne Andrew.
Mike Sylvester, rant over...