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GFDA Top 14 for 4/9/17

Here's the GFDA Top 14 for this week, celebrating great things happening to move Great Falls Forward.

1) Congratulations to the Weissman's on the grand opening of Teriyaki Madness! "I've opened stores in 17 communities across the country for this company and many more for my last company. This is the only community I'd consider moving to, I love it here!" said Shanlee Kasson,Teriyaki Madness Corporate Trainer. See more details on the new business in Tribune.

2) Wines by Wednesday is opening a new downtown events center in its historic building at 214 5th Street South. The 3,300 square foot space can hold up to 150 people for special events and concerts. More details in Tribune. Congratulations to the Tronsons on this great addition!
3) GFDA's Board of Directors unanimously voted to endorse support of the Great Falls Public Schools technology levy. GFPS currently gets $21.66/student per year from existing technology levies. This is only 27% of the average of the 19 Montanan A and AA school districts. Only one Montana A or AA school district, Laurel, raises less than Great Falls to spend on technology. Havre raises 75% more per student than Great Falls. Billings raises 83% more. If the proposed levy is approved, GFPS would raise $62.07 per student per year, 78% of the average of the A and AA school districts. Please read this pamphlet about the levy and look at this presentationSuperintendent Tammy Lacey gave to our Board. 
4) Met with Brien Rosendale who recently moved to Great Falls to continue growth of the Eagle Crossing subdivision north of town. The Rosendale family has plans for additional single and multi family housing as well as storefronts. Welcome to our community!
5) The Cascade County Commission approved the construction contract for the first phase of Fox Farm Road improvements, funded by a Rural Special Improvement District, and asphalt overlays on Dune Drive, Fawn Drive and Dick Road, paid with regular County road maintenance funds.
6) Met with an area AgriProcessor regarding expansion and future growth plans. Existing business growth is one of our top economic drivers. If you know a business we should reach out to, call Jolene at 406.750.4481. We issued our 1st Quarter 2017 Index.
7) Are you tired of leasing office or warehouse space for your business? Would you like to move into something of your own? If so please contact our loan officer Mike Archer at 406-284-1789 to find out how GFDA can help you purchase commercial real estate and equipment with as little as 10% down and interest rates that are currently at 4.62%, fixed for the 20-year life of the loan.
8) Commissioned a Household Labor Survey from Chmura Economics. The survey will help us learn more about our unemployed, underemployed and out-of-workforce residents. We'll use this in our work with companies deciding whether to create new jobs in Great Falls. We'll also use it as part of our strategic planning to address workforce and higher wage job challenges.
9) Presented a "Getting Choteau Online" workshop in partnership with the Montana Department of Commerce to 24 entrepreneurs and community leaders. The workshop focused on best practices, budgeting and messaging in the world of digital marketing. GFDA's next workshop, LaunchPoint, is scheduled for Wednesday, April 12th from 4-5pm at GFDA, 300 Central Avenue, Suite 406. LaunchPoint is a free, pre-business workshop designed to guide entrepreneurs looking start a business. Space is limited. Please RSVP here or email Jason at
10) Thank you AE2S for hosting our April Forward Great Falls Investor Development Coffee! We'll see you back at AE2S on May 5 at 7 AM.
11) Be sure to save the date for the GFDA Forward Great Falls Investor Annual meeting, 6/29, at 11:30 - you're not going to want to miss this one! Details to follow!
12) Montana ranks 4th in gender pay equity with an 18.8% gap according to However, this counts all men and women regardless of job type, education and experience. When controlled for similar men and women in similar jobs, says Montana ranks 38th with a 4.1% gap. See more info here.

13) The average wellhead breakeven price in key American shale plays has dropped 55% since 2013 from $80/barrel to $35/barrel. In the Bakken, it has dropped from $66/barrel to $29/barrel, the lowest price in any of the nation's 5 major plays.
14) More golden eagles fly through our Big Belt Mountains than any other raptor migration site in the Lower 48, according to Montana Audubon. Details in Tribune.
Untame Your Entrepreneurial Spirit in Great Falls, Montana!


Brett Doney
President and CEO
Connect with me on LinkedIn to network with the Great Falls region.

"Rarely have I seen a situation where doing less than the other guy is a good strategy."
Jimmy Spithill
Congraulations to Linda Caricaburu on being honored with the Athena Award! Well deserved!!
Cost-Effective Industrial Sites Available
If your company needs a rail-served, BNSF-Certified, shovel-ready site with all municipal services at your door, we have lots available for immediate construction in the Great Falls AgriTech Park. Contact Brett Doney at 1-406-750-2119 or

Upcoming Business Events/Training
GFDA Investor Trip to Boise
Join us as we go to Boise May 8-10. As part of our strategic planning process, we're going to be exploring first-hand successes in downtown revitalization, a new event center, innovative housing, workforce attraction, and cluster industry growth. There will be a small cost to help cover expenses that will be based on how many people come on the trip. If you are interested, please pre-register here to receive additional details, or contact Jolene at

Montana Ag Summit will be held in Great Falls at the ExpoPark on May 31-June 1. See more info at This promises to be a great event to promote food/agricultural production and processing!
Native American Development Corporation monthly webinar on the SBA 8(a) program with special presenter Robert Much April 20th at 3 PM. For more info or to inquire about future topics please call Tim Guardipee at NADC 406-259-3804.
Apply to Join Inc. 5000
The Governor's Office of Economic Development encourages Montana businesses to apply for the Inc. 5000 list by May 1, 2017. Placement on the Inc. 5000 list increases business' credibility with lenders, investors, and customers alike. To qualify, your business must be privately-owned, based in the United States, independent (not a subsidiary or division of another company), have started earning revenue by March 31st, 2013, had revenue no less than $100,000 in 2013, had revenue no less than $2,000,000 in 2016, and had revenue in 2016 that exceeds revenue in 2013. Click here to apply.
Economic Growth, Diversification and High Wage Jobs
Montana's first Accredited Economic Development Organization.
We provide SBA 504 Real Advantage loans statewide.
GFDA and High Plains Financial are Equal Opportunity Lenders.
Untame Your Entrepreneurial Spirit!
For more info, click to our website.



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300 Central Ave. Suite 406
Great Falls, MT 59401
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Great Falls, MT 59403