The Power of Partnerships

CareerEdge Funders Collaborative creates better jobs, better wages, a better community.

It’s a beautiful day on the Gulf Coast. Standing on the bridge overlooking Nathan Benderson Park, you can
see the scullers rowing in unison. You can feel the beat of teamwork, everyone pulling together, in sync, in the
same direction, as one. You can track the smooth, steady forward progress as the boat cuts through the
glistening water.

The scullers represent a movement in Manatee and Sarasota Counties… the pulling together of many forces
to work in collaboration. The creation of a world class rowing facility at Nathan Benderson Park and being
awarded the hosting rights for the 2017 World Rowing Championships represents this kind of effort.

And this spirit of pulling together toward a common cause resonates throughout the region, perhaps in an
unlikely area – workforce development. Through shared commitment to the economic viability and vitality of
the region, local government, educators, employers, and funders are pulling together to improve the workforce
development process in Manatee and Sarasota Counties. The goal: to create a workforce system that
supports current employers and attracts new ones, and a system that opens career pathways for its citizens.

In rowing, the coxswain is the driving force that organizes the crew and sets and maintains the rhythm of the
team. In workforce development, you also need a coxswain– an organizing mechanism to assemble a team,
create a plan, and move it forward. When all team members work together, the power of workforce
partnerships can be realized. CareerEdge Funders Collaborative is that coxswain for the Manatee-Sarasota