JH Chamber mapping out recovery plan for local businesses

JACKSON, Wyo. — While COVID cases in the Jackson Hole area likely have not yet peaked and social distancing combined with a stay-at-home lifestyle is the norm right now, economic recovery will one day be priority.

The business community in Jackson is looking toward the Chamber of Commerce for direction about when it will be safe to slowly ramp up economic pursuits and how best to do that safely.

The Jackson Hole Chamber of Commerce, in collaboration with the Teton County Emergency Management Plan, has launched an Economic Recovery Task Force (ERTF) in response to COVID-19

“What will a return to work look like? That is the question weighing heavily on the minds of government leaders and public health officials, employers and their employees, and Jackson Hole families striving for the delicate balance of staying safe and making ends meet,” said Chamber VP Rick Howe.

The Chamber matched 27 local leaders that represent different business categories, elected officials, communications experts and community partners to initiate the assistance of a short- and long-term recovery as the valley one day exits the social isolation period.

The purpose of ERTF is to assist Teton County’s response to the crisis and aims to shorten recovery time and mitigate losses. The timeline of the response strategy will include active efforts through December 2020. The Task Force’s actions steps and how they will work to minimize damage are in response to the many challenges the community has been presented with, including, but not limited to misinformation, business opportunities and advocacy, future funding opportunities and workforce concerns including health, safety and unemployment.

“What is increasingly certain is that returning to work will be gradual, phased-in, and will vary by factors such as location, sector, business type or size, and the health status of workers. It also will require continued social distancing, expanded use of personal protective equipment, and other counter-measures,” Howe said. “Planning for this needs to begin now. While we have no playbook or precedent, we do have a clear, collective goal that return to work and life in Jackson Hole needs to happen safely, successfully and sustainably.”

The first ERFT meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, April 15.

Economic Recovery Task Force:

  • Laurie Andrews – President, Community Foundation Jackson Hole
  • Gary Trauner – ED, Silicon Couloir
  • Jodie Pond – Director of Health, Teton County Health Department
  • Karen Connelly – Chief Communications Officer, St. John’s Health
  • Arne Jorgensen – Principle Hawtin Jorgensen Architects, Jackson Town Councilor
  • Colby Cox – Founder Roadhouse Brewing, Governors Economic Task Force
  • Cory Carlson – Marketing and Sales Director Four Seasons Resort, Travel and Tourism Board Director
  • Dr Jim Little
  • Mike Gierau – Owner, Jedediah’s Corp., Wyoming State Senator
  • Eric Dombroski – VP Sales & Marketing, The Yarrow Group, Travel and Tourism Board Director
  • Gavin Fine – Owner, Fine Dining Restaurant group
  • Jonathan Schechter – Town Councilor
  • Kate Sollitt – ED Travel and Tourism Board
  • Kelly Lockhart – Lockhart Ranch, Wyoming Business Council
  • Kevin Olson – President, Teton Media Works
  • Larry Hartenstein – GM Jackson Hole Sports
  • Luther Propst – Teton County Commissioner
  • Mark Newcomb – Teton County Commissioner
  • Pete Muldoon – Mayor of Jackson
  • Rich Ochs – Coordinator, Teton County Emergency Management
  • Anna Olson – President Jackson Hole Chamber of Commerce
  • Rick Howe – VP Jackson Hole Chamber of Commerce
  • Sadek Darwiche – Hotel Jackson, Darwiche Retail Properties
  • Susan Scarlata – Town of Jackson Communications
  • Jody Lyle – Chief, Office of Strategic Communications, Yellowstone National Park
  • Grace Stephens – Yellowstone National Park
  • Jeremy Barnum– Grand Teton National Park Chief of Staff

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