An active military presence in any region offers the potential for a win-win between the military and the surrounding community. At MACWPA, our goal is to educate stakeholders at all levels—from citizens to elected officials to commanders—about the opportunities these relationships present and to build bridges wherever possible so that our region continues to grow. Pittsburgh, and Western Pennsylvania as a hub, have taken a blue collar foundation of grit and hard work and reinvented themselves to be a hub for technology, medicine, and education. Any military present here benefits from having those resources nearby, and that military presence in turn attracts more attention and activity for the region. Active military means more people supporting local businesses as families relocate to the region, yes, but the opportunity is even larger. The opportunity to support a military base creates jobs and attracts additional investments from government entities as well defense-oriented businesses. To put it into perspective, the economic impact of the defense industry across Pennsylvania has been estimated to be $30 billion that has also led to 60,000 jobs in the state. States across the country are capitalizing on similar benefits, but we believe that Western Pennsylvania is uniquely positioned to offer a diverse range of benefits, partnerships, and opportunities to our military. While the presence of the 911th and its collaboration with the Pittsburgh Airport is a powerful step forward, we believe that our region is rich with the kind of people and innovation that make our military and our country great. This is why MACWPA was formed, and it’s why we continue to work every day to support both our military and our region. The potential is simply too great to be ignored.