Don Chappel and Robbie Matesic on Growing Investment & the Economy in Greene County; Part 7 of a Bi-Weekly, 10-Part Series

by on May 16, 2016

Part 7 of a Bi-Weekly, 10-Part Series

NAIOPQuotesRobbieMatesicNote:  The Pittsburgh Regional Alliance (PRA) invited each of its economic development partners from the 10-county region to tell us about what is top of mind for them when it comes to marketing their counties – and the Pittsburgh region – for business investment.  We provided 10 questions and asked our partners to respond to some or all of them, providing fresh insight and perspective at the micro (county) and macro (region) levels. 

 Here are some of the responses that Don Chappel, executive director, Greene County Industrial Development Inc., and Robbie Matesic, executive director of economic development, Greene County Department of Economic Development, shared with us.

 Q: Which sector currently is the lead driver of your county’s economy?  What makes that sector a winner?

 Robbie: Energy, energy, energy! Coal and natural gas (conventional and unconventional) for decades. Greene County has been the nation’s leading county in the production of bituminous coal and the fifth most active county in Pennsylvania in natural gas production.  Currently the decline in the production of coal and natural gas exploration beckons opportunities for midstream and natural gas utilization to increase demand, and that’s the transition that is underway.

 Q: At the heart of America’s industrial heartland, our region has a long history and a big reputation for making things.  We are well poised to be in the lead of a resurgence of “made-in-America manufacturing.” What stands out about manufacturing in your county right now?

 Don: The quality of the workforce and what our people can produce simply with the use of their hands.

Q: Hands down, what is your county’s biggest economic development advantage?

Don: Natural gas and easy access to the interstate highway system.

Q: Who or what is your inspiration for going into work each day and taking up the business of economic development?

 Robbie: With the transition underway in global energy plays and the amazing advancements in technology – thanks to our universities and the depth of our resources – southwestern Pennsylvania is situated at the frontier of tomorrow. I’m so fortunate to work every day with committed people of all ages who are making our future happen.

Q: The region has a solid inventory of business parks, which make decisions to invest here all that much easier. Tell us about one notable industrial park in your county.

Don: EverGreene Technology Park with its KOZ/pad-ready sites and a location no more than a par 5 from Interstate 79.

Read the complete article, “Take 10 [Questions],” featuring responses from all of the region’s economic development professionals.  The piece was originally published in the Pittsburgh Business Times as part of a supplement for the NAIOP Pittsburgh 23rd annual awards banquet in March.

Check back on the PRA Blog every Monday and Wednesday for the next installment of the #Take10Pgh blog series.