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Opinion: West Virginia is winning

Mitch Carmichael

Cabinet Secretary, West Virginia Department of Economic Development

I am writing to share the good news that West Virginia is winning!

Our state is scoring incredible economic development victories that in previous years would have been unimaginable. West Virginia has successfully awakened America to the value, benefits, and many advantages of establishing and growing businesses in our state. The result is that many great jobs, amazing opportunities, and new industries are finding a welcoming home in West Virginia.

Mitch Carmichael

New factories are rising and quickly growing across the West Viriginia landscape. Thousands of advanced manufacturing, skilled materials handling, scientific research, and other fantastic jobs will be available to our citizens. These new factories will provide direct and indirect benefits to our communities. For instance, the factories will utilize power from our West Virginia utilities, thus benefiting the entire supply chain for electric power generation and many other related services.  

West Virginia is experiencing a once-in-a-generation economic renaissance that should be celebrated and shared. The rebirth of the West Virginia economy is exciting and full of potential for continuing expansion. The Governor has assembled an Economic Development team that is skilled in the proper manner of conveying the many advantages our wonderful state offers to businesses throughout the world. Our success is undisputed and unparalleled in the recent history of West Virginia.

The victories we are winning for our citizens have been years in the making and serve to validate the numerous legislative and executive policy initiatives which have transformed West Virginia into a nimble, vibrant state capable of competing and winning on an international basis. The beauty of our state’s economic resurgence, which serves as a testament to its enduring legacy, is the many hands and various entities that have contributed and continue to play a vital role in this success. Across political parties and throughout all branches of Government; Republicans, Democrats, Business, Labor, Federal, State, and Local leaders have worked diligently to ensure our state is well-positioned for success. Most importantly, the citizens of West Virginia have driven this amazing climb and are embracing the positive momentum generated in our state. The people of our state deserve all the credit for creating and embracing a better and more prosperous future for this and coming generations of West Virginians.

Key elements to all successful ventures is widespread adoption of the chosen course, an embrace of triumphs, and sharing of the success. It is important to underscore the many victories that are being notched for the citizens of West Virginia. Our mindset is that of expectation for victory and economic prosperity. West Virginia can compete and win on a worldwide stage. No project is too big for us. For example, in the year 2022, West Virginia secured over $6.1 billion in private capital investment generated from over 29 new and expanding companies. By comparison, this figure is more than the combined total from the previous four years!

Occasionally, we might encounter a special interest group or pessimistic person viewing our glass as half empty. May we take a moment to remind these few people that West Virginia is moving forward. West Virginia has left behind the attitude of scarcity in which the benefit to one must come at a cost to another. Life is not a zero-sum game filled with envy and anger. Rather, we are embracing an attitude of abundance which makes us excited, motivated, and ready for action. The economic pie in West Virginia is expanding. Often, the thought sweeps over me that this is the most thrilling hour for economic development in the 160+ year history of West Virginia. Growth and opportunities exist in all sectors of our economy. The future for West Virginia workers, families, and our economic prosperity is bright and full of sunshine.

Let’s share the good news!