Your local 911 call could kill you

Our government structure puts your life at risk

Will your 911 cell phone call save you in an emergency?

Maybe not if you’re calling from within our region.

I have a friend who witnessed a wreck near Blue Lake Road off of Hwy 280. He immediately dialed 911 but ran into a geographic overlap. Continue reading Your local 911 call could kill you

Birmingham is in the center of my heart

The Hess Camellia Garden at the Birmingham Botanical Gardens

The year 1999 was painful for me and my family.  My wife, Ina-Mae, was diagnosed with breast cancer.  Fortunately the UAB Comprehensive Cancer Center is located here in Birmingham.  And I’m absolutely convinced Ina-Mae would not have survived without UAB.

Patients come from all over the world to visit UAB.  When Ina-Mae registered with doctors at Kirklin Clinic, nurses seemed genuinely surprised we lived almost in walking distance. Continue reading Birmingham is in the center of my heart

Convoluted government brings us to our knees

St. Louis and Birmingham surprisingly have a lot in common

 

The year was 2002.  Dave Adkisson, the then Birmingham Chamber of Commerce President, and I were in St. Louis jogging early one morning when we struck up a conversation with a local runner.

He asked where we were from and why we were visiting St. Louis.  We told him we were with a group of about 100 business leaders and politicians from Birmingham who had come to St. Louis to learn about his city’s successes.

His response was one of disbelief.  “Why in the world would anyone think there was anything good to learn about St. Louis?” Continue reading Convoluted government brings us to our knees

How can we have UAB and suck?

 

UAB has an annual  economic impact of  $4.6 billion

When our Chamber of Commerce (BBA) visited Charlotte in 2004, we were greeted by the President of the University of North Carolina Charlotte.

Charlotte’s a city on fire, but the first words out the President’s mouth were, “We don’t have anything like UAB.”

Can you believe a great city like Charlotte is jealous of us? Continue reading How can we have UAB and suck?

Does Birmingham have poor corporate leadership?

Alabama Ballet performs Nutcracker--corporate leaders have made Birmingham an arts powerhouse

 

I had the opportunity to talk with a new corporate CEO who moved to Birmingham from Nashville a few years back.

I asked, “So what do you think of Birmingham?”  Then I looked down at my shoes waiting to hear how much Nashville had outpaced Birmingham.

Continue reading Does Birmingham have poor corporate leadership?

BBJ Readers support unified metro government–two to one

 

I was dumbfounded when I saw the results.

The Birmingham Business Journal ran a poll the week of February 29, 2012.

Readers were asked, “Would you be in favor of a unified metro area government for Birmingham?”

The response was more than two to one in favor. Continue reading BBJ Readers support unified metro government–two to one

Who’s the mayor of our region?

Mayor Petelos & Mayor Bell at launch of BBA Blueprint Birmingham

 

We know it’s not the mayor of Birmingham.

The City of Birmingham represents only 19% of the population of the metro area.

And Mayor Bell, who I strongly believe understands the importance of regionalism, has said on numerous occasions, “I was not elected mayor of the region.”

Continue reading Who’s the mayor of our region?

Four unsettling comments

The Birmingham News convened a panel of community leaders to discuss the future of Birmingham

 

The Birmingham News convened a panel of community leaders in April of 2011 to discuss the future of Birmingham.  Included were corporate CEO’s, non-profit professionals, and top political leaders.

Each panelist made his/her remarks and then questions or comments were solicited from the audience. Continue reading Four unsettling comments

Birmingham rated one of the poorest sports cities in U.S.

Legion Field has lost its magic

 

It seems like a distant memory, but in the 70’s and 80’s, Birmingham leaders were plotting to recruit an NFL football franchise to Birmingham.  I don’t know how close we came, but we obviously felt there was a possibility.

Of course, we weren’t successful while other Southern Cities like Jacksonville, New Orleans, Atlanta, Charlotte, and Nashville recruited teams. Continue reading Birmingham rated one of the poorest sports cities in U.S.

In Alabama, a county that fell off the financial cliff

February 19, 2012

Everyone from Birmingham should read this this piece from the New York Times:  “In Alabama, a County that fell off the Financial Cliff.”

As the article states, government structure, as usual, created this mess. Continue reading In Alabama, a county that fell off the financial cliff

To begin a conversation about a better Birmingham