Miami-Dade’s economic development agency accomplished Thursday what the nation has not, healing the election-year political divide with a “Vote Miami”-themed annual meeting. “We feel we can all endorse Miami — and I’ll stop with the endorsements there,” said council chair Ernie Diaz, who is regional president of TD Bank.
In a humor-filled video, leaders of the Beacon Council championed a campaign to vote for Miami as the No. 1 place in the country to do business, lauding its diversity, academic institutions, airport, medical facilities, real estate and growing tech sector. “I’m Joe Roismann,” popped up an image of long-time Beacon Council supporter and Perry Ellis executive, at the video’s close, “and I approved this message.”
Diaz, Mayor Carlos Gimenez and outgoing CEO Larry Williams praised the organization’s efforts resulting in the relocation and/or expansion of 43 companies in the past year, for a total $188 million in new capital investment, during the meeting, held at the Miami Marriott Dadeland.
Gimenez, Williams and incoming chair Jaret Davis, co-managing shareholder of Greenberg Traurig, pointed to the continuing need for support of Miami’s innovation ecosystem. “We have all the pieces here,” Williams said. “Now we need to connect them.”