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May 02

A Unified Chanute

Posted on May 2, 2016 at 3:51 PM by Kristi Dozier

                                                                     A Unified Chanute

Last summer, my wife Casey and I, being natives of Chanute, decided it was time to move home.  Our children are now ages 11 and 7, and one undeniable truth always remained in our hearts: Chanute is a great city to raise a family.  Like many Chanutians, when we hit the ripe age of eighteen, we were chomping at the bit to move away to college.  Since then we have traveled, lived in larger cities, and gained some powerful outside world experiences and perspectives. 


Coming home we both knew right off of the bat that we wanted to be heavily involved in the betterment of our community.  We wanted to jump right in and be positive members of our hometown. 


When we first moved back, I was still commuting to Kansas City two to three times per week and flying around the country developing logistics and supply chain structure for Fortune 500 Companies. Every time I had to leave Chanute and my family on yet another trip, I longed for a position in town to where I felt I was truly contributing to my local economy. 


Then, as luck would have it, I heard of a position opening for Executive Director of the Chanute Regional Development Authority.  I will be the first to admit, I didn’t even know such an organization existed in Chanute upon our return.  But, after much research, I knew I had to apply and put my best foot forward to obtain the position.  I was given a rare opportunity to help my hometown, and I am honored to do so in the capacity with the CRDA. 


Since the beginning of my tenure, and even during my interview process, one word has always been a part of my personal Mission Statement, “Unity.” I truly believe that is what separates a strong community above the rest is how well the individual organizations; the city, and local government unite.  I know some organizations in town have history to where they may have not gotten along in the past for whatever reason, and frankly, I do not care.  It is time for us to rise up and put Chanute first.  I have truly enjoyed working with the City Commissioners, City Staff, The Chamber of Commerce, Main Street Chanute and MANY more.  By sitting down and talking with many of our local business leaders, I see the passion in their eyes and hear the sincerity in their voice.  At the conclusion of these meetings, I cannot help but feel energized and excited for the future of our great city. 


I know at times it can be tough to remain positive.  I have heard the stories too, “We didn’t get this business because of so and so,” but as General Custer said, “It is not how many times you get knocked down that count, it’s how many times you get back up.” As a community, we must continue to get up together to make Chanute the best Chanute we can.  At the CRDA, we are continually working with prospective businesses to bring them to Chanute.  These companies come from many sectors, included but not limited to, Industrial, Commercial, Retail, and so on.  Seventy Five percent of those we go after will never make it onto these pages due to confidentially agreements but I can assure you, we are working tirelessly to bring more jobs, with fair wages, to our great city.  We will only be able to do so with the support of our citizens, leaders and organizations.  Showing these potential suitors that united we can be the best option for their company, is the only way we can truly grow.  I leave you with the motto I have lived by my entire career, and what I have passed along to every person I have ever managed:
“It is amazing what you can accomplish if you do not care who gets the credit”
– Harry S. Truman


Matthew Godinez
Executive Director
Chanute Regional Development Authority