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Kansas Wins Prestigious Gold Shovel Award for Economic Development Excellence for Second Consecutive Year

Jun 06, 2022

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TOPEKA – Kansas has won Area Development magazine’s coveted 2022 Gold Shovel Award, marking the second year in a row the state has received this national recognition for excellence in economic development.  

“For the second year in a row, Kansas has been recognized as one of the nation’s leaders in job creation and business investment,” Governor Laura Kelly said. “There’s a reason why: Our track record of fully funding schools, investing in infrastructure, and expanding broadband access has resulted in more businesses choosing to call Kansas home.”

The annual award is given to states that attract high-value investment projects that create a significant number of new jobs in their communities. Only five states have been awarded the Gold Shovel for 2022. Since the start of Governor Kelly’s Administration, Kansas has received nearly $8.8 billion in new business investments, created and retained nearly 43,000 jobs, and been home to 645 new economic development projects.

As the state’s lead economic development agency, the Department of Commerce works to help businesses and communities grow in Kansas. Commerce’s business recruitment team supported all business successes submitted for the Gold Shovel Award.

“Under Governor Kelly’s leadership, the Kansas economy has transformed into one of the most dominant states for economic development,” Lieutenant Governor and Commerce Secretary David Toland said. “Our aggressive approach to bringing new, quality jobs and investment to the state has led to back-to-back years of record-breaking success. As a result, the world is taking notice.” 

To strengthen these record-breaking efforts, Governor Kelly recently signed the Attracting Powerful Economic Expansion (APEX) bill into law. This bipartisan legislation provides an additional tool to help Kansas compete for some of the country’s most significant and transformational economic development projects. With modern, competitive economic development tools and a highly skilled workforce, Kansas will remain on track for new growth in the years to come.

The Kansas Department of Commerce worked with economic development organizations and partners across the state to select a sample of successful projects to submit for this award.

The top projects are:

Company NameTotal Capital InvestmentCityCountyNew Jobs
Hilmar Cheese Company$459,206,226Dodge CityFord247
Bartlett Grain Company, LP$322,750,000CherryvaleMontgomery50
Hill’s Pet Nutrition$251,500,000TonganoxieLeavenworth85
Summit Sustainable Ingredients, LLC$251,386,056PhillipsburgPhillips55
TriRx Pharmaceutical Services$70,000,000ShawneeJohnson250
Torch Research, LLC$55,000,000LeawoodJohnson490
Charter Communications, Inc.$18,919,072Overland ParkJohnson510
Netsmart Technologies$11,435,000Overland ParkJohnson425
WellSky Corporation$9,926,000Overland ParkJohnson593
MCI BPO$1,500,000WichitaSedgwick500