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Summit Point CEO Shines in TV Spot

By Christine Miller Ford
Special to the Spirit 

 

SUMMIT POINT – West Virginia Secretary of Commerce Keith Burdette has nothing but praise for a new economic development commercial featuring CEOs from around the state, including the leader of the automotive performance-enhancing company located here.

Paul Lambert, the president and CEO of Summit Point-based STaSIS, is one of seven leaders highlighted in the "Business at the Speed of Life" commercial, which made its national debut on CBS and the Golf Channel during the PGA Tour's Greenbrier Classic at the White Sulphur Springs resort in late July.

"It was a tremendous opportunity to showcase West Virginia in front of viewers across the country," Burdette said. The ad's impact comes in its sincerity, Burdette said. "These are real business men and women who are conducting business in West Virginia," he said. "We did not use actors. We did not use politicians. We did not use a script. These executives tell their own stories, one business person to another."


It was two years ago this month that STaSIS announced plans to relocate its corporate headquarters from California to the Summit Point Motorsports Park in Jefferson County. Then-Gov. Joe Manchin along with state leaders, local officials and others came out Sept. 8, 2009, to formally welcome STaSIS to the community.

At the time, Lambert said he was thrilled to be coming to the Mountain State. "The facilities here at Summit Point, the quality of the talent we've already been able to attract, and proximity to business partners are a unique combination that will pay dividends for us," he said.

 


The idea for the new commercial, according to state officials, is to get West Virginia on the radar of other CEOs across the country who may want to move or expand their businesses.


In the video, many of the CEOs say West Virginia is a prime place for expansion or relocation because of its low cost of doing business, the lowest manufacturing employee turnover rate in the country and ample resources for small business.


"The state's approach to responsible government has produced a very positive business climate," Burdette said. "That's a strong message we can tell business executives. It's an even stronger message when West Virginia's executives can show them with their own successes."

West Virginia's economic achievements – namely, billions in new business investments and six consecutive years of state surpluses without a tax increase – also are put in the spotlight.

The commercial also features two other CEOs from the Eastern Panhandle: Peter Longo, president of logistics and operations for Macy's, the retailer that announced plans in late 2010 to build a massive new distribution site in Martinsburg; and Tim Pulte, the plant manager at Martinsburg's Quad/Graphics.


Other business leaders featured in the commercial operate businesses in Morgantown, Charleston, Wood County and Greenbrier County.The website associated with the commercial, www.businessathespeedoflife.com, includes profiles of Lambert and the other CEOs from the commercial as well as write-ups of a handful of other key CEOs from across West Virginia, including two other Eastern Panhandle men: Harry M. Siegel, president and CEO of HMS Technologies Inc., and Jonathan Moore, who owns Rowdy Orbit. Both companies are located in Martinsburg.


Burdette said it makes sense for West Virginia to get more aggressive in letting others know about its pro-business climate.
"A national message dedicated to attracting businesses to the state is an assertive move," he said. "It sends the message that West Virginia has seen dramatic, positive changes in our business climate and in our ability to compete for business nationally."


Burdette said that the state will continue to broadcast the message in months to come. "This approach will be used in all aspects of the state's marketing to attract new business and increase jobs," he said. "This marketing tool allows West Virginia economic development teams — from the local to the state level — to show these executives talking about their experiences in one-on-one meetings with businesses we are recruiting; at our national and international trade shows; through our social media marketing; in print and online advertising; and to all who visit our website."


To view the 30-second commercial, go to www.businessatthespeedoflife.com. For more on STaSIS, visit stasisengineering.com.
— Christine Ford is the editor-publisher of the new quarterly publication Panhandle, panhandlemagazine.com.

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