Chair Powell, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia President, Patrick Harker, and their teams visited York to meet partners who are engaged in collaborative solutions for small business and workforce recovery.

The relationship between YCEA and the Federal Reserve has increased since 2018 with the efforts of developing a transportation study, and participation in their ROC (Reinventing our Communities) Fellowship Program in 2021 and 2022 focused on small business recovery and workforce solutions.

The visit began with a meeting between Chair Powell, President Harker, and two graduates of the John A. Lambert Hospitality Training Program who are now employed by the Yorktowne Hotel. The program is offered at no cost to prepare individuals for a career in the hospitality industry.

A roundtable followed highlighting efforts stakeholders have partnered on to build inclusive economic growth across the region. Partners shared details on economic development and revitalization initiatives, workforce education and training programs, and support for small business growth.
entrepreneurs to community employers.

The tour then led to Central Market House, to highlight the importance of local assets and incubator spaces in supporting entrepreneurship and small business growth. The tour included visiting with market vendors to hear about their operations, how they launched their businesses, the role that supportive programming plays in small business growth, and how access to capital and credit is shaping business development.

Jennifer Heasley, owner of Sweet Mama’s Mambo Sauce and The Game Day Kitchen, a graduate of the BLOOM Small Business Development Course and a recipient of a BLOOM small business loan spoke about her experience in meeting with the Chairman to Fox Business“We talked about my benefit of access to capital, I recently received a [BLOOM] small business loan, as well as a line of credit. Which has allowed me to benefit slightly differently than others who are being impacted currently. That’s the bigger conversation I had, on having access to capital for small female and minority business owners,” said Heasley

The tour ended at Gather 256, a café in the WeCo district of the York City. Chair Powell and President Harker discussed the impact of the York County Trail Town Program on the growth of three businesses, Main St. Market in Glen Rock, Flinchbaugh’s Orchard & Farm Market in Hellam, and Gather 256. The stop provided an opportunity for  in-depth discussion with micro business owners about how economic conditions are impacting their current operations, opportunities for future growth, and the transition from being solo entrepreneurs to community employers.

Full gallery of photos here.