By Rick Platt, Licking County Port Authority

Ask Emily Smith about Ohio and expect to learn why Intel chose Licking County and why Emily chose Intel:  “As a lifelong Ohioan, I’m proud that our history as a manufacturing powerhouse along with our incredible people and robust infrastructure has made our beautiful state an ideal location for Intel’s most advanced manufacturing facility in the world.”

Emily is Intel Ohio’s Public Affairs Director and Intel’s first Ohio hire.  Community engagement, communications, and local government affairs are in her job description.   From my encounters with her, I can tell her job will run the gamut.  She’s as comfortable in a pole barn as a corporate boardroom.

She’s hit the ground running, and her growing contact list shows how truly active and engaged she’s been.  She’s organized the first of many neighborhoods meeting in Jersey and Monroe Townships and made more meetings with local officials’ and business development groups than lifelong residents have.

Jim Evers was recently announced to lead the Intel Ohio plant.  He’s a long-time Intel employee taking his career from an Intel operator to leading Intel’s Ocotillo fab in Chandler, AZ.  He’ll be moving to Ohio soon.

Jim’s already engaged though.  He’s been spotted at meetings and tours with other area manufacturers, exploring collaborative workforce efforts and STEM learning as well as getting to know the region’s many assets.

Asked about his impressions on leaving Arizona to relocate to Ohio, it’s hard to leave out the obvious transition from sunny Chandler to four seasons enjoyed in Ohio.  Evers is upbeat about it.  In a recent profile, Jim remarked, “Aside from getting used to the cold weather, I want to make sure Intel does right by the community.  I’m going to make sure that as we grow, we do so in a way that respects the history of this rural community. As we bring our Intel culture to Ohio it must have a unique Ohio identity. I’m trading cacti for buckeye!”