On March 21, 2023, the Gateway Team joined Penny Groux, Director of Corporate Affairs for the Perdido Beach Resort, and Mindy Hanan, CEO of the Alabama Restaurant and Hospitality Association to share our region's strategies for dealing with workforce issues in South Baldwin County. In attendance were more than 40 attendees from all across the United States representing major destinations, national parks, and large employers. “Attendees took great interest in our concept of delivering workforce housing along with other wrap-around services including education, childcare, and transportation in one location. Elements that are vital to attracting the talent we need to maintain our brand”, said Ed Bushaw of the Workforce Authority and the Gateway team. One attendee from Yellowstone National Park mentioned that the model could and should be duplicated in other areas of the country with a marriage of private and public interest and funding.
The Gateway Team is exploring the opportunity to form a national workforce development organization that deals specifically with the Hospitality and Tourism industry to provide a forum for idea-share, best practices, and shared resources.