Baldwin’s First Economic Forum Shows Partnership between BCAR, BCEDA

Robertsdale, AL – October 17, 2017 – The first partnership between the Baldwin County Association of REALTORS® (BCAR) and the Baldwin County Economic Development Alliance (BCEDA) provided an update on the Baldwin County real estate economy, while also discussing national economic trends on Monday, Oct. 9, at the Daphne Civic Center: "State of the Economy.”

"We were very excited to partner with BCEDA to host the State of the Economy event,” said Frank Malone, President of the Board of Directors for BCAR. "Working together, both organizations can provide a wide variety of information to the lower Alabama business community, and we hope this is the first of many productions.”

The event, sponsored by BBVA Compass and Columbia Southern University, featured speakers, both locally, nationally, and internationally, to speak to not only the growth within Baldwin County, but the county’s growth compared to the southeast region and the United States.

Congressman Bradley Byrne began the event with topics currently impacting Baldwin County’s economy, including the proposed I-10 bridge over Mobile Bay, developing the workforce and skillset for career technology occupations, and creating a long-term solution to red snapper season.

BBVA Compass presented economist Shushanik Papanyan, who is responsible for analyzing the U.S. economy and Federal Reserve monetary policy for BBVA. Her presentation compared the growth of the United States to the rest of the globe.

Tim Martin, the CEO of Creek Indian Development Enterprises Authority (CIEDA); Matt White, President of White-Spunner Realty; John Wilson, CFO of the Baldwin County Public School System; and Ormand Thompson, President of Thomas Hospital; made up a panel of local leaders to discuss the economy of Baldwin County in each of their respective fields.

Dr. Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist and Senior Vice President of Research at the National Association of REALTORS® concluded the economic forum with a keynote lunch address. Dr. Yun oversees research activity for NAR, including existing home sales statistics, affordability index, and home buyers and sellers profile report. Dr. Yun appears regularly on financial news outlets, has testified before Congress, and often appears as a guest on CSPAN’s Washington Journal. His presentation focused on recent developments in the national and local housing markets, and how other economic indicators and trends impact the real estate market.

"We certainly thank all the speakers for sharing a wide range of knowledge with the large audience,” Malone said. "Not often can you attend an event and gain first-hand knowledge of the world and national economy, inside information from the congressional level, real estate trends and predictions, and local boots-on-the-ground ventures.”

Lee Lawson, President and CEO of Baldwin County Economic Development Alliance, echoed Malone.

"The link and partnership between the Baldwin EDA and REALTORS® is a strong one,” he said. "Having national economists like Dr. Yun speak highly and positive about how strong the Baldwin County economy is shows our strength.”

As a BCAR member and board member, Troy Wilson, BCAR President-Elect, felt the economic summit was a success with an exceptional turnout, despite the weather.

"We were honored to be able to co-host this event with the Baldwin County Economic Development Alliance,” Wilson added. "It was a huge honor to be able to have Dr. Yun come and speak to us. He was very enlightening on where the economy has been in the recent past and his feelings about the next two years. He, along with Dr. Papanyan and our four local panelists offered some clear insight to the audiences. It was clear that Baldwin county and its residents have plenty of reasons to be excited about the future of our county.” 

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