The Governor’s Economic Development Marketing Team is a private-sector organization promoting Oklahoma’s business development. Members travel nationwide on behalf of the State of Oklahoma to call on business prospects, consultants and investors interested in location, relocation or expansion of manufacturing and service opportunities in Oklahoma. The Team annually sponsors and participates in several targeted domestic trade missions and events.
The Team operates in well-defined cooperation with the Governor’s office and plays a major role assisting the Oklahoma Department of Commerce (National Recruiting division) with domestic recruitment activities and marketing efforts. They are on the “front line” of economic development activity for the entire State, the key players – not only for their individual communities but for the entire State effort.
To organize and carry out an ongoing, cooperative effort by the economic development practitioners in the private and public sectors of Oklahoma to attract industry and create jobs in Oklahoma, thereby expanding and diversifying the State’s economic base while raising the per capita income of its citizens and improving the quality of life for all Oklahomans.
Formed in February 1964 as the “Oklahoma Industrial Development Advisory Team,” concerned Oklahoma business leaders believed Oklahoma was on the threshold of great industrial development during the next few years and further believed the magnitude of the development could be changed appreciably by joint efforts. Their intent was “to provide a vehicle of mutual consent whereby those involved could jointly and/or severally represent Oklahoma from a statewide consciousness.” Those first members gave both their time and funds for advertising and promotional assistance to the then Oklahoma Department of Commerce and Industry. Their mission was expanded and the name was changed to the “Oklahoma Industrial Team.” In the late 1960s, under the leadership of Governor Dewey Bartlett, the Team restructured and limited membership to industrial development professionals. They then changed the name to the “Governor’s Industrial Team,” and an intensive and well-organized nationwide recruitment effort was begun. The Team enjoyed widespread national publicity because of its innovative “teamwork” approach to domestic recruitment.
Membership on the Team is limited to those individuals who are employed on a full-time basis for performing or supervising the performance of others in the economic development profession. All new members are subject to approval of the Team and the Governor if he/she so chooses.
The Team continues to enhance its ability to locate new businesses and industries that create jobs and investment by successfully promoting Oklahoma through personal contact during call trips, trade shows, direct mail, and advertising in concert with the Oklahoma Department of Commerce recruitment plan. A high priority is placed on maintaining cooperative and coordinated relationships with other economic development entities to support the Team’s mission. The Team has created and maintains an image as effective, professional economic development practitioners, and communicates its activities to the public and others involved in Oklahoma’s economic development.
The Team maintains a formalized educational program to orient new members to its functions and activities, to train members in making effective, professional prospect calls, and to continually update all members on issues relevant to economic development. Applicants and existing members must attend, annually, a prescribed training seminar.
Through the years, members of this Team have participated in hundreds of call trips and trade shows and have contacted literally thousands of business prospects and consultants. In 2010, for over 46 years, the Team has played a unique and pivotal role in the recruitment of new industry to the State of Oklahoma. Today, the primary goal of the organization remains intact: to recruit new industry through a unified effort promoting all of Oklahoma.P.O. Box 26980