Work Ready boss visits

Published 6:10 pm Friday, March 18, 2011

AT THURSDAY’S PRESENTATION at Bainbridge College are, from the front, County Commissioner Charles Stafford, Ann Well, Workforce Development Executive Director Melvin Everson, Marjorie Mayfield, Grace Nix, Bainbridge College President Richard Carvajal, Debbie McIntyre and Suzi Bonifay; back, School Superintendent Fred Rayfield, Chamber of Commerce President Diane Strickland, Suzanne Brandt, County Administrator Tom Patton and Mayor Edward Reynolds.

The head of the Governor’s Office of Workforce Development visited Decatur and Early counties Thursday to recognize them for becoming certified “Work Ready” communities.

Melvin Everson, the executive director of the program, who was appointed by Gov. Nathan Deal in January to head the office, told local officials at Bainbridge College that Decatur County and Bainbridge have demonstrated they has a viable workforce.

When companies look to relocate, it is the community’s commitment to education and its workforce that they look at first and foremost, Everson said.

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“I’m very passionate about this because I see the value of it,” Everson said.

Everson then presented a proclamation to Marjorie Mayfield, who was chairman of the Bainbridge-Decatur County Chamber of Commerce committee in charge of getting Decatur County certified.

In order to have been certified, the high school graduation rate had to increase, which it did by 7.6 percent; and a minimum number of individuals had to be assessed. Decatur County had 717 individuals take the assessment test.

Having the Work Ready certification tells potential businesses and industries that the community has demonstrated it has an available workforce.

Everson also said that it can help an individual once he or she takes the assessment. For example, the assessment can assist that individual with building their strengths that employers are looking for and to guide them in making improvements in their job skills or education.

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MELVIN EVERSON, executive director of the Governor’s Office of Workforce Development, presents a proclamation from Gov. Nathan Deal Thursday after Decatur County became a certified Work Ready Community. The presentation was made at Bainbridge College.