Over the past several years, the move of U.S. Forces Command (FORSCOM) and U.S. Army Reserve Command (USARC) to Fort Bragg has been a catalyst for change. The region has come together as never before in support of the men and women in uniform and numerous initiatives have been undertaken by the Fort Bragg Regional Alliance to increase state and regional economic growth opportunities especially in the military preparedness and homeland security sectors. From enhancing educational opportunities, to land planning to partnership building to sustainability steps, the region has been transforming itself and growing. FORSCOM and USARC are operational and people and businesses have arrived with many more coming. Growth is expected to continue to 2030.
FORSCOM has a $30 billion annual obligation authority for defense and other contracts and provides unmatched opportunities for enterprising businesses who want to compete for these dollars. As a result, many defense-related companies have made the move or are in the planning stage to relocate to the Fort Bragg region.
To enhance the available workforce, a U.S. Department of Labor grant for $5 million was received in July 2007, to create a workforce innovation center – one that focused on the development of a skilled workforce specific to defense industry needs. The All American Center for Defense Innovation opened in June 2008 at Fayetteville Technical Community College. The Center will virtually and physically connect the region’s workforce, economic, and educational assets with other regional assets and partners to create a synergy of effort and resources. This ongoing effort has connected regional high school students, educators and businesses to a highly technical universe of educational opportunities.
Partnerships have been key in transforming the region. Through the Alliance, closer ties to the Governor’s office, N.C. Department of Commerce, N.C. Military Foundation, and North Carolina Military Business Center, Defense and Security Technology Accelerator (DSTA) and others have grown and lead to state wide initiatives and enhanced opportunities leading to an empowered yet emerging defense industry in North Carolina.
Lead by the Alliance’s efforts, the establishment of the All American Defense Corridor in October 2007 created even more strategic alliances as Camp Lejeune, the Port of Wilmington, Seymour Johnson AFB, Fort Bragg, the University of North Carolina System, NC State University, Raleigh, Durham and all points in between began greater efforts to support the war fighter and all who serve. The alliance emphasizes the strengths associated with the research and development capabilities at RTP and the UNC system; defense industry partners; military requirements; homeland security; and non-defense related growth.
Establishing a defense and homeland security industry sector, raising the bar for workforce transformation, and integrating regional planning are all necessary components for a strong and sustainable future in the Fort Bragg region. Regional economic development, education and training for our displaced workers and youth, and preserving a green infrastructure will ensure both sustainability and security for the region in the decades ahead. The Fort Bragg Regional Alliance was critical to the establishment of the North Carolina Defense Business Association.
Mission growth and the FORSCOM/USARC move to Fort Bragg were and are catalysts to attract defense related industries in key areas such as homeland security and military preparedness to the region.
- Overall growth results in:
- Increased opportunities for additional prime contracts, partnerships, subcontracts, suppliers, and defense related companies
- Increased business from in and out of state
- Increased office and warehouse space for contractors
- Aggressive planning leads to and enhances significant regional defense related economic development in high tech and investment in R&D
- Continue the strong efforts already established for partnerships, educational/workforce enhancements, alliances and continue to grow the region both in personnel and in businesses related to the defense industry cluster.
- Continue marketing of the region through travel, meetings, documents, websites and explore new opportunities to tell the story.
- Support our existing businesses and continue a strong recruitment effort to attract more.
- Be good stewards of the environment and utilize sustainable practices in all we do.
- Review and update strategic plans and efforts with our key partners.
North Carolina's Manufacturers:
NCSU has developed a website to showcase North Carolina's world-class manufacturers. This website is free and could become a great tool for our regional companies to post their capabilities. Click here to access the "MNC - Manufactured in North Carolina" website.