Friday, April 27, 2012

National business moving to Ketchum

Sustain Blaine meets May 2


By KATHERINE WUTZ
Express Staff Writer

Sustain Blaine economic development group will hold its quarterly meeting next Wednesday, spotlighting a national company that has chosen to relocate to Ketchum.

PACT Apparel, an underwear, sock and apparel company, has relocated to a former art gallery space at 291 First Ave. N.

Liz Kantor, PACT's marketing coordinator, said in a news release that this location will be the company's corporate headquarters, while its design studio will remain in San Francisco.

The proceeds from apparel and underwear sales go toward different charities. According to a company press release, funds have helped build a community well in Uganda, empower the homeless of Detroit and build a community center for tsunami-impacted fishermen in Japan.

Joy Kasputys, interim outreach and development coordinator for Sustain Blaine, said the business was a perfect match for Ketchum.

"It's an interesting fit for our area," she said. "It's something hip and different and supports different charities. Goodness knows this valley has a bent toward [helping] different charities."

Sustain Blaine will also use Wednesday's meeting to elect three members to the 31-member advisory group. The elections will boost the group's numbers to 33, as Kasputys said the group wishes to expand its number of representatives from the public sector.

Kasputys declined to name the nominees, who have been chosen by members of the advisory committee, but said they would each be given an introduction to the group before the vote.

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Executive Director Harry Griffith and committee chairs will give updates on the progress of the Nordic Olympic training site designation process, an economic statistics study, a proposed culinary institute in conjunction with College of Southern Idaho and other projects.

Kasputys said that to her knowledge, nothing had been made official regarding Sun Valley's potential designation as a Nordic training site for Olympic and Paralympic athletes.

Another change within the group is that Sustain Blaine is seeking to hire a part-time outreach and development coordinator. Kasputys said the person in this position would be in charge of crafting press releases, raising funds and become a touchstone for the public to contact for information on business development.

"The need for the position has grown as there have been additional projects the group has taken on," she said. "The goal is to have more news releases and awareness and support for our projects."

Kasputys said the position would be funded through private donations and some public money that was not allocated to other Sustain Blaine projects.

The meeting will take place Wednesday, May 2, at 9 a.m. at the Blaine County Courthouse in Hailey. It is open to the public.

Katherine Wutz: kwutz@mtexpress.com




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