Economic Development and Infrastructure Committee Ι Staff Leaders: Jenny Torres, Jeff Burt, and Larry Killman
4FrontED has four pillars or priorities: economic development, infrastructure, tourism, and education. As a standing committee, its economic development efforts are geared to advancing the binational megaregion’s economic health and expanding economic opportunities for residents through collaboration and cooperation. In support of this effort, an Economic Development Summit was held in 2018 to accelerate economic development cooperation and inform the megaregion’s elected officials, higher education leaders, tourism officials, and economic development representatives about the region's assets, economic challenges, and opportunities.
Specific areas of attention for Economic Development:
- Creating a website that is accurate, informative, and expandable
- Developing a map that displays the megaregion’s geographic bounds
- Evaluating the quality, quantity, and completeness of regional information that describes the economic and demographic data available
Specific areas of attention for Infrastructure Development:
- Increased natural gas capacity for the Yuma (Arizona) - San Luis Rio Colorado (Sonora) Region
- Increased commercial and non-commercial capacities at both San Luis Ports of Entry
- Improved roadway access to and from San Luis Ports of Entry
- Regional electrical transmission capabilities
- Increasing rail access and capacities
Education Committee Ι Staff Leader: Alejandro Figueroa
The Education Committee's primary objective is broadening the educational exchange between the megaregion’s secondary educational institutions and Mexico. To achieve this objective, 4FrontED staff supporting this committee have established a binational education task force that includes representatives from Arizona Western College, the Greater Yuma Economic Development Corporation, and the Universidad Politécnica de Baja California. This task force was responsible for creating the Four Borders International Academic Alliance (Arizona - Baja California - Sonora). Members of this alliance include the United States Arizona Western College, the University of Arizona, Northern Arizona University, and Arizona State University. The universities from Mexico participating in the alliance include the Universidad Politécnica de Baja California, the Instituto Tecnólogico de Mexicali, the Universidad Autónoma de Baja California, the Universidad Tecnológica de San Luis Río Colorado, Sonora, the Universidad Tecnológica de Guaymas, Sonora, the Universidad Tecnológica de Etchojoa, Sonora, the Universidad Tecnológica de Hermosillo, Sonora, among others.
A secondary objective for the Education Committee is to make the 4FrontED Binational Megaregion an entrepreneurial hub by leveraging the U.S. entrepreneurial visa program that can promote new business start-ups and innovation. While this program is its initial implementation phase, the Committee has already included the Region's Startup Day as part of its annual program, and participation includes budding entrepreneurs from Yuma County, Baja California, and Sonora. Also, the Committee has begun working with the Mexican Consulate in Yuma to formalize the careers that will be the focus of exchange programs between educational staff and students from both the U.S. and Mexico.
Tourism Committee Ι Staff Leader: Hector Tapia
The travel and tourism industry is a highly-ranked Arizona export industry. Communities throughout the state benefit from the tax revenues generated as well as jobs created from tourism. Binational tourism assets include historical sites, recreational facilities and amenities, and entertainment that can be promoted to draw more visitors to the region. Currently, this committee is working to establish a regular calendar of regional events.