Despite back-to-back storms, 3 Albany businesses thriving - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Despite back-to-back storms, 3 Albany businesses thriving

Procter and Gamble sustained major damage to its distribution center (Source: WALB) Procter and Gamble sustained major damage to its distribution center (Source: WALB)
Werhner Washington (Source: WALB) Werhner Washington (Source: WALB)
Thrush Aircraft added 100 new jobs in April (Source: WALB) Thrush Aircraft added 100 new jobs in April (Source: WALB)
Hamilton Relay said they are adding 80 new jobs (Source: WALB) Hamilton Relay said they are adding 80 new jobs (Source: WALB)
Justin Strickland (Source: WALB) Justin Strickland (Source: WALB)

Despite two devastating, back-to-back storms, three Albany businesses are bouncing back and even enjoying growth.

Procter and Gamble sustained major damage to it's distribution center during an EF-3 tornado January 22.

The company added 40 new jobs to their plant this year.

P&G's Plant Manager, Werhner Washington, said P&G will come back from the storm stronger than before.

Werhner commented to WALB that P&G is viewing the storm's devastation as an opportunity for growth, and more hires are possible.

"But, we believe this is a great opportunity for P&G to strengthen this plant, to strengthen our operations, and put us in a position to have even greater production volume in the future, which could lead to more jobs," said Washington.

Thrush Aircraft, a crop duster manufacturing company, added 100 new jobs two months ago.

And, Hamilton Relay, a call-center for the disabled, last week announced they are adding 80 new jobs.

That company had to rebuild its current location after it was destroyed in the January 2 damaging wind event that swept across the city.

The President of the Albany-Dougherty Economic Development Commission, Justin Strickland, presented the job data to county commissioners Monday.

"220 jobs just this year in the midst of two terrible storms, and working to help them get back on their feet, has been phenomenal to see," said Strickland.

Strickland said 80% of new job growth comes from existing industries.

He said there is a "system" to creating jobs, and a piece of that is working alongside industries to help them develop the workforce they need to succeed.

One way the EDC does that is by facilitating the Industry Round Table, along with the Albany Area Chamber of Commerce.

From that group of business leaders, which includes P&G's Washington, the Industrial Operations Technician Program was created at Albany Technical College.

That innovative workforce development program, the first of its kind in Georgia according to the EDC, educates potential employees, and prepares them with the skills necessary for a technical position.

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