I often wonder what people think about when they think of Bossier.
Do they see it as a nice, little community with traffic and shopping? Is it a place nestled against a lot of hunting and fishing opportunities for the weekend? Or is it simply “home?”
My point is that human nature is to perceive your surroundings through your own lens. In my case, that is business news and community news. And I see Bossier as an aspiring, progressive parish that works to get things done.
This past week’s State of Bossier Address hosted by the Chamber of Commerce reaffirmed that. It saw the area’s mayors — Bossier City, Benton, Haughton, and Plain Dealing — as well as the Police Jury president give an update on their priorities, challenges, and hopes for the future.
While each municipality/town has their own challenges, each mayor was down to earth but optimistic. And they know a rising tide lifts all boats — as each of their towns grow and improve, so do the others.
It also featured a stats presentation from LSU Shreveport’s business and economic research that painted a picture of a local economy on the rebound.
To sum it all up: 14-16 were pretty bad years, but 2017 was better and this year is expected to improve more.
I was specifically tied in with the event as BIZ. was not only a sponsor but used our fourth annual Bossier Progress section to further illustrate everyone’s points.
This yearly report sums up all the advancements in our major business sectors, quality of life, infrastructure, and government with the goal of giving the business community and residents vital information that inspires civic pride and maybe make a new business or talented individual move to Bossier.
When I think about Bossier, I think about major developments — the opening of Louisiana Tech Academic Success Center at Bossier Parish Community College’s STEM Building, the grand opening of the East Bank District in what was “Old Bossier,” Fortune 100 company General Dynamics purchase of CSRA, crime rates dropping for Bossier Parish, and Bossier Schools achieving an A ranking, just to name a few.
They all help illustrate that Bossier is indeed making “progress.”
It doesn’t make for much change year to year, but the fact that I have plenty to fill this edition with is good news in of itself. Bossier officials, as they did last Thursday, always tout that they’re working on making Bossier better and turning it from what was originally forecasted decades ago to be nothing but Barksdale Air Force Base and farmland into a hub of new industries and creative individuals.
Credit to leadership whose vision and commitment stayed the course through obstacles and all the people who said it can’t be done. Their achievements have helped make everything we see around us — a National Cyber Research Park, new roads, new homes going up, new stores and restaurants — possible.
I look forward to saying the same thing again in 2019. May we be so lucky.
Sean Green is editor & publisher of BIZ. Magazine