Economic Update - May 2022

May 06 2022

Dear Members, Partners and Friends of the EDC,

How awesome it was to see 200 of you at our Annual Breakfast last week where we featured Bob Hess from the Newmark Consulting team and Dr. Rob Eyer from Sonoma State. The energy in the room was electric, and we heard from many of you how much you enjoyed the event. We’re so glad to hear that feedback. When I looked out into the audience, I was happy to know that I have met with more than 100 of you. I’m looking forward to spending time with the rest of you in the coming months. Here’s to gathering in person again and connecting around our vision for our great county!

The team of consultants working with us on Moving Solano Forward 3 have already conducted over 50 of the 150 total interviews that they will have completed within the next six months. Thank you to all of you who have shared some of your valuable time and insights with them. Gathering this data is critical to formulating the playbook that will inform our work in the years ahead. This study was funded not only by the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA), but also by all seven cities and the county. I encourage you to take full advantage of this opportunity. The team came from various parts of the country and I can tell you that they were really impressed with what we have to offer, and were particularly taken by the beauty of Solano and the friendliness of our people.

Lastly, I get to participate in a great many cool events and share great moments with many of you each month. This last month, I felt particularly privileged to witness an important milestone for the Solano Black Chamber. Thanks to the tenacious purposeful leadership of Tamuri Richardson, the Solano Black Chamber now has a brick and mortar home. I was pleased to see the diverse coalition of community leaders who showed up to share that special moment with Tamuri and her team. Congrats!

P.S. I know that the SBC is looking for sponsors for their Juneteenth Celebration next month. Please support them if you’re able.

P.P.S. Please connect with me on LinkedIn and follow our Solano EDC LinkedIn Company Page

P.P.P.S. This June I will participate in my 11th Aids Lifecycle charity bike ride from San Francisco to Los Angeles. The event supports vital services at the San Francisco Aids Foundation and the Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Center. The event has been cancelled the last two years due to the pandemic and these organizations lost a significant funding source. (The event raises $16 million + each year to support their vital services). You can read about these organizations and what this money goes towards here.

If you can support with a contribution that would be great and so appreciated.

Wishing you all good health and continued prosperity.

Chris Rico, President and CEO          

Save the Date for ‘Making in America’

The second webinar in our 2022 speaker series is schedule for Tuesday, May 24th from Noon to 1:30 pm.

California Manufacturers & Technology Association President & CEO Lance Hastings will speak about his organization’s work in helping California manufacturers gain and keep a competitive edge, and insights into where he sees the industry going.

The free webinar is presented thanks to our series sponsor Kaiser Permanente. Registration will be sent out later this month.

BayREN offers Green Home training for Realtors

Prospective homebuyers searching sites like can now filter for criteria like “Green Home,” a designation that indicates properties with LEED, Energy Star certification, solar panels, or other green features and appliances.

As demand for these amenities grows, Realtors can take trainings through BayREN on topics such as Green Real Estate Marketing, All About ADUs for Realtors, Healthy Housing Principles for Realtors, Accredited Green Appraiser Training, and on achieving the National Association of Realtors Green Designation. Courses run throughout the year; a calendar with registration links can be found at 

Solano Workforce and Economic Development Programs Make Regional Headlines

Heather Henry, Executive Director of the Workforce Development Board of Solano County, economist Robert Eyler, and Vacaville City Manager Aaron Busch are all featured in Comstock’s magazine’s May piece “On the Rebound: How regional leaders are relaunching their local economies after the pandemic.”

Solano’s rapid retraining programs, including the three-week culinary training for restaurant staff, and the boot camp for starting family-run childcare businesses, both to address industry shortages, are highlighted. Also featured is the intentional shift in diversification to high-growth industry segments like biotech. Read the story at

Kaiser Touts the Many Benefits of Unplugging

It is no secret that technology, social media, and various apps are dominant forces in our daily lives. They’ve brought many added values: connecting friends across distances, low-cost entertainment, increased access to education, platforms for advocacy, and streamlining businesses and products to name a few.

However, these benefits have not come without costs. Since the invention of social media, teen suicides have drastically increased. Nonstop and immediate access to others plays a role in increased stress and burn out. Many would say despite increased communication, it has decreased the general human connection, empathy, and experience. As with all things, balance with technology is key.

Unplugging has gained more traction as people in the tech industry began bringing attention to concerns they had with technology leaders specifically striving to make their online programming and apps addictive. The goal of unplugging is to elevate human connection over digital engagement.

Adding a day of unplugging to your regular monthly or weekly routine can have many physical and mental benefits, including increased physical movement, greater connection to those around you, reduced eye strain, and an increased sense of connectivity to your community. However, with the digital world firmly engrained in our society, this can be easier said than done.

For a list of tips and benefits for unplugging for the day, visit

Suisun Valley K-8 Wins National Green Ribbon

A big congratulations is in order for Fairfield-Suisun Unified School District's Suisun Valley K-8 School.

The U.S. Department of Education announced that the school is among its 2022 Green Ribbon Schools award honorees! The honor comes after the school was named as a 2022 California Green Ribbon School.

Suisun Valley was nominated for the award by the California Department of Education for its extensive work in creating a campus and school community focused on environmental sustainability and education. Award honorees were recognized for their innovative efforts and leadership in reducing environmental impact and utility costs, improving health and wellness, and ensuring effective sustainability education.

Suisun Valley is one of only 27 schools, five districts, and four postsecondary institutions that are being honored across the entire country.