Mayor Greg Fischer joined Greater Louisville leaders to announce the launch of Where Opportunity Knox today, an initiative that will connect 10,000 transitioning veterans and military spouses to jobs and to the region over the next three years.
In addition to the 6,000 to 8,000 jobs available in the Greater Louisville Region, the region?s proximity to Fort Knox makes it uniquely suited to become a veteran talent magnet. Fort Knox is the headquarters for the U.S. Army?s Transition Assistance Program (TAP) where approximately 130,000 soldiers exit the Army annually, either physically or virtually.
?When we talk to businesses, either currently in our city or businesses thinking about moving here, one of the first questions they ask is how talented is our workforce,? said Mayor Greg Fischer. ?Where Opportunity Knox is exactly what employers need, a program to increase talent in our community. Louisville is behind this effort 100% and will help in any way as a ?participating employer.??
Where Opportunity Knox comes at an opportune time - by 2016 it?s estimated that 480,000 soldiers will transition back to civilian life looking for the best job opportunity.
?While employers throughout the country have made the commitment to hire veterans, we?re proud to be the first region in the U.S. to recognize and implement an initiative around the economic advantage of attracting veteran talent and their families,? says Wendy Dant Chesser, CEO of One Southern Indiana.
?Where Opportunity Knox offers a first-of-its-kind solution to the challenge of finding additional skilled and talented individuals to work in our region,? added Kent Oyler, CEO of Greater Louisville Inc.
?We have a unique competitive advantage as we are the only region in the country with Fort Knox in its backyard and through Where Opportunity Knox, we intend to model the best practices in connecting veterans to jobs and community for the nation,? commented Brad Richardson, CEO of the Hardin County Chamber of Commerce.
Through a network of trained Regional Veteran Connectors (RVCs) and a host of knowledgeable volunteers, Where Opportunity Knox is poised to make the connections veterans need to find the right civilian job and the right civilian community. Where Opportunity Knox also provides a single online source for transitioning families to get the information they need about available jobs, schools, churches, housing and overall quality of life in the Greater Louisville Region.
Where Opportunity Knox was created in order to develop a pipeline of transitioning veterans who are looking for a post-military place to live and work ? a place that values veterans, offers a high quality of life and has a diverse and robust economy with available jobs and careers. The Greater Louisville Region is that place and Where Opportunity Knox will make those connections.
Where Opportunity Knox is currently funded by the Duke Energy Foundation, the Ogle Foundation and the Gheens Foundation. Kentucky Indiana Exchange (KIX), managed by three regional chambers of commerce including Greater Louisville Inc., the Hardin County Chamber of Commerce and One Southern Indiana, designed and implemented this initiative.
For more information on the Where Opportunity Knox initiative and to learn about hiring opportunities for veterans, visit whereopportunityknox.com.