ANTWERP, OH – The Paulding County Business Advisory Council (BAC) met at Antwerp Manor Assisted Living facility on Wednesday, March 6th, headed by Tim Copsey, Paulding County Economic Development Director to discuss initiatives focused on collaboration between local businesses and schools for the betterment of Paulding County. The meeting kicked off with a welcome and introduction of 22 attendees, including Lu Cooke, Northwest Regional Liaison Lt. Governor’s Office, and Mike Weible, Paulding County Commissioner.

Key agenda highlights included:

Mission Statement Update: Tom Taylor of Western Buckeye ESC and Tim Copsey, PCED Director, spearheaded efforts to refine the BAC Mission Statement for submission to the state. The goal is to ensure collaboration with the steering committee in shaping the business advisory council’s future direction.

Spring SuccessBound Event: Rhonda Hogrefe of Northwest Ohio College TechPrep invited BAC members to the upcoming Spring SuccessBound event at Terra State on April 26th. The event will facilitate discussions and strategies for education and workforce.

Paulding County Career Expo: Kristen Schilt shared details about the upcoming Paulding County Career Expo, highlighting opportunities for businesses to engage with students. Interested businesses are encouraged to reach out for participation.

Teacher Bootcamp: Lu Cooke announced Teacher Bootcamp funding was available again from the state. They recognize the importance of this program and advocated for it. Paulding County Teacher Bootcamp is scheduled for June 3-6 & 13th. The event, in collaboration with Ashland University, offers educators and businesses a way to connect and learn from each other all while earning continuing education credit.

Education Updates:

  • Wayne Trace Junior/Senior High School received a $2.4 million grant from the Ohio Department of Education and Workforce to enhance STEAM programs and facilities.
  • Paulding High School is organizing a community clean-up day on April 29th, providing students with opportunities for community service and engagement. In addition to an update on the Panthers for Careers program.
  • Antwerp High School is launching an Archer Career Advantage Program this fall to expose seniors to career exploration opportunities.
  • Vantage Career Center is experiencing record-high applications. There is also a need for adult education instructors.
  • Northwest State Community College shared an update on the new Van Wert campus.

The meeting also addressed topics such as Ohio TechCred sign-ups, the need for residential housing, and discussions around other career development initiatives.

The next quarterly meeting is scheduled for June 8th at Mercer Landmark Latty. For more information about the Paulding County Business Advisory Council please reach out to the economic development office at 419-399-8295 or