Press Releases

Chris Edwards Named President/CEO of Business Partnership

BRIDGEWATER, NJ – The Executive Committee of the Somerset County Business Partnership (SCBP) today endorsed the recommendation of the Search Committee and Board of Directors, naming Chris Edwards, former Vice-President of Business Services, as President/CEO, succeeding Mike Kerwin who will be retiring March 13, 2020. Edwards has served in his current position at the SCBP since May of 2018 following his tenure as SCBP Director of Business Development fom March, 2013  to May, 2018. “Chris was a valuable additon to the Business Partnership staff from the day of his hiring,” commented current Board Chairman Ed Dolan. “He immedialy understood the culture of the Partnership and was able to communicate that culture to businesses throughout the county. We have not only experienced a significant increase in the number of members of the organization but also have experienced an increase in member participation and renewals over that time.” Prior to his hiring at the Business Partnership Edwards served as Director of Resource Development at United...

Business Partnership to Honor Peg Wright as 70th Somerset County Citizen of the Year

BRIDGEWATER, NJ - The Somerset County Business Partnership (SCBP) has announced that Peg Wright, President/CEO of the Center for Great Expectations, has been selected as the 70th Somerset County Citizen of the Year. The Citizen of the Year award, given annually to Somerset County’s premier civic and business leader, is the county’s most prestigious individual award recognizing a single person for community and professional activities that have contributed to making Somerset County a special place. The dinner honoring the Citizen of the Year continues the seven-decade long tradition of bringing the community together to honor an individual’s efforts in support of the County and provides the opportunity to reflect on Somerset County’s rich history and the people who have provided the leadership that has contributed to that success. Ms. Wright will be honored on Thursday, April 30, 2020, beginning at 5:00 P.M. at the Bridgewater Marriott, 700 Commons Way in Bridgewater, New Jersey. Past recipients are individuals who...

Somerset, Hunterdon & Morris Chambers Collaborate on Opportunity NJ Presentation

BRIDGEWATER, NJ – “OpportunityNJ (ONJ) is a non-partisan, grassroots coalition comprised of New Jersey interests representing employers, employees, business, trade groups, community organizations and other concerned citizens in the State. With no direct ties to political parties or government, ONJ serves as an independent voice to provide data based education about New Jersey policy actions – and to support policies that encourage job growth, affordability and prosperity in New Jersey.” On Monday, November 18, 2019, a collaboration of the Somerset County, Hunterdon County, and Morris County Chambers hosted at the Raritan Valley Community College to present Opportunity NJ’s plan to make New Jersey more competitive and affordable.   Opportunity NJ co-chairs Michelle Siekerka, Esq., President and CEO of the NJ Business and Industry Association and Tom Bracken, President and CEO of the NJ Chamber of Commerce led an interactive discussion on the comprehensive plan that shows how to create an business environment in New Jersey that encourages job creation, business opportunity, private sector investment, and an affordable...

A Plan for Business Innovation in New Jersey

In any discussion about the hotbeds for discovery and innovation in the United States — in fact, around the world — New Jersey is always high on the list. As home to 20 members of the Fortune 500, the Garden State has the talent, infrastructure, and resources necessary to lead the world in life-changing innovation. More than 17,000 businesses have a presence here in Somerset County alone, including global innovators that include LabCorp, GSK, Sanofi, and Ethicon. We are, however, on the brink of toppling over an economic precipice, and New Jersey’s rightful place as an innovation leader on the global stage is tenuous. Significant corporate tax burdens — among the highest in the nation — have made our state much less regionally attractive for businesses, both large and small. And our prohibitively high cost-of-living is among the reasons why New Jersey holds the dubious honor of leading the nation in the number of residents moving out. This makes it more difficult...

Annual Meeting

Business Partnership Announces Economic Vitality Recipients

The Somerset County Business Partnership (SCBP) will recognize Pfizer, the Somerset County YMCA, and Chimney Rock Inn as recipients of the 2019 Economic Vitality Awards, recognizing their leadership in enhancing the economic competitiveness of Somerset County. The Economic Vitality Awards will be presented at the Somerset County Business Partnership Annual Meeting on Monday, December 9, 2019, at the Palace at Somerset Park, 333 Davidson Avenue in Somerset, New Jersey. The day's activities will begin with a networking reception at 11:30 A.M. followed by the luncheon at 12:15 P.M. Pfizer is a global biopharmaceutical company with a portfolio that includes medicines and vaccines in addition to many of the world's best-known consumer healthcare products. Pfizer is recognized for its growth in Somerset County and its investment in community- based approaches against infectious diseases locally and internationally. The Somerset County YMCA (Somerset Hills Y, Somerville Y, Hillsborough Y, Plainfield Y, Bridgewater Y Pool) is a...

Officials Weigh in on Grow NJ Program

TRENTON – Somerset County Freeholder Director Brian D. Levine was among the county and local officials who testified recently before the New Jersey Senate Select Committee on Economic Growth Strategies.Freeholder, Levine, Senate, Committee He was joined by Somerset County Business Partnership President & CEO Mike Kerwin, Business Partnership Vice President John Maddocks and county Planning Director Walter Lane. “Somerset County Freeholders have worked hard at building partnerships that enable us to creatively address challenges and take advantage of opportunities,” Freeholder Levine told the Senate committee. “These partnerships are an effective and efficient investment of public funds to improve our communities. Our analysis of the Grow NJ program and its impact on our county is just one of many examples. “As a matter of competitiveness, we support statewide business assistance programs that reduce the barriers to entry for companies wishing to create jobs and make capital investments in our communities,” he continued. “As you...

Opportunity NJ Council to Push “Plan For An Affordable New Jersey”

Trenton, NJ – Opportunity NJ (ONJ) today announced the formation of the New Jersey Economic Development and Advisory Council to advance an agenda to stimulate job and median wage growth while realigning the state for regional competitiveness and affordability – leading to a stronger and fairer economy for all. The agenda can be found in the ONJ Plan for an Affordable New Jersey, which is also being released today. ONJ is a non-partisan coalition comprised of New Jersey organizations representing employers that employ more than 2.5 million workers. With no direct ties to political parties or government, ONJ serves as an independent voice to provide data-based education about public policy actions – and to support policies that encourage job growth, affordability, and regional competitiveness in New Jersey. Through periodic and direct engagement with state policy leaders, the New Jersey Economic Development and Advisory Council plans to deliver information, research, and data about the impact of...

Ensuring the Economic Competiveness of New Jersey

New Jersey is in a tough position.  As with every other state throughout the country, we are consistently fighting for growth.  This means fighting for new businesses, while at the same time trying to hold onto businesses currently operating in the State.  Over the past few months, there has been an active debate regarding New Jersey’s use of business attraction and retention incentives, specifically the Grow New Jersey Assistance Program (Grow NJ).  While the current Grow NJ program is certainly far from perfect, with some minor changes, it can and should remain an important part of the State’s economic development toolkit.  In a perfect world, New Jersey would be competitive without the need for business attraction and retention incentives.  Doing business here would be economically efficient, the cost of living would not be as high, and it would be 70 degrees and sunny all year around.  Imagine the possibilities—it would be easy to attract and retain businesses.  New Jersey wouldn’t have to fight tooth and nail, just hoping...

Paul Grzella

Business Partnership to Honor Paul Grzella as 69th Somerset County Citizen of the Year

BRIDGEWATER, NJ - The Somerset County Business Partnership (SCBP) has announced that Paul C. Grzella, recently retired General Manager/Editor of the Courier News, Home News Tribune, and mycentraljersey.com has been selected as the 69th Somerset County Outstanding Citizen of the Year. The Citizen of the Year award, given annually to Somerset County’s premier civic and business leader, is the county’s most prestigious individual award recognizing a single person for community and professional activities that have contributed to making Somerset County a special place. The dinner honoring the Citizen of the Year continues the seven-decade long tradition of bringing the community together to honor an individual’s volunteer efforts in support of the County and provides the opportunity to reflect on Somerset County’s rich history and the people who have provided the leadership that has contributed to that success. Grzella will be honored on Thursday, May 2, 2019, beginning at 5:00 P.M. at the Bridgewater Marriott, 700 Commons Way in Bridgewater, New Jersey. Past recipients are individuals who have dedicated...

Business Partnership Special Interest Groups Provide Business Strategies & Information

BRIDGEWATER, NJ – To help Somerset County Business Partnership (SCBP) members interact on business-related issues, Special Interest Groups (SIG) have been established that provide opportunities for business people to come together from all industries and professions to network, exchange ideas, gain new business strategies, and contribute to the SCBP’s agenda. SIGs are a member benefit that meet in the Conference Room at the Somerset County Business Partnership, 360 Grove Street in Bridgewater, New Jersey and other major locations in Somerset County. The Sustainable Somerset SIG plans and develops programs focusing on clean energy, energy audits, and the legal aspects of “green”, while working with the Somerset County Energy Council.  Sustainable Somerset meets on the second Tuesday of each month at 8:00 A.M. and is sponsored by Reflective Energy Solutions. The Workplace Wellness SIG focuses on raising awareness about the benefits of employer-based wellness programs and provides information to employers on the availability of community...