It’s no secret the Commonwealth is a hotbed for college basketball success, something that’s never been more obvious to the rest of the world now that we are sending two teams to the NCAA Men’s Division I Basketball Final Four. But Cards and Cats basketball isn’t the only thing our state’s got to brag about; Kentucky’s a player in many areas. From signature industries to product inventions to top rankings, the bluegrass really is greener in My Old Kentucky Home.
At the Kentucky Chamber, we make it our business to protect our state’s business climate for the good of companies and employees. We couldn’t be any prouder of these achievements, but we know there are more. Help us add to our statewide Brag Book by telling us why you think Kentucky is No. 1. Is there something your community leads the country in? Let us know in the comment section!
Horse Racing: Not only is the state home to the world’s most legendary racetrack, Churchill Downs, and most prestigious race, the Kentucky Derby, but it is also home to Keeneland and Turfway Park and was the site of the 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games.
Energy Production: As of 2010, 24% of the nation’s electricity was produced in Kentucky – either Kentucky coal, or from enriched uranium rods coming from the Paducah Gaseous Diffusion plant.
Bourbon Distilling: The Commonwealth produces roughly 97% of the world’s bourbon, including Maker’s Mark, Woodford Reserve, Jim Beam and Wild Turkey. Visitors from all across the globe visit the Kentucky Bourbon Trail each year to see one of Kentucky’s signature industries for themselves. For more on other attractions like the Kentucky Bourbon Trail, visit kentuckytourism.com.
Automotive Manufacturing: The world’s No. 1 selling car, the Toyota Camry, is produced in Georgetown. A top-selling SUV, the Ford Escape, is produced in Louisville. And one of the world’s most popular and iconic sports cars, the Corvette, is produced in Bowling Green!
Food Industry: The largest restaurant company in the world, Yum! Brands, is based in Louisville, and many other national and worldwide restaurant chains like Papa John’s and Fazoli’s also call Kentucky home. Restaurants employ more than 180,800 Kentuckians.
Education Improvement: Over the past several years, the Commonwealth has made significant improvement in academic rankings. It became the first state in the nation to adopt the Common Core State Standards for K-12 in 2009. Also, the state’s public and private universities awarded a record number of degrees and credentials during the 2010-11 academic year, making it No. 1 at the rate it is increasing the granting of college degrees.
Outstanding Chambers of Commerce: Since 2007, four Kentucky chambers of commerce have received the national Chamber of the Year award from the American Chamber of Commerce Executives association. Chambers in Paducah, Bowling Green, Louisville and Owensboro have each earned the highest achievement in the chamber profession, excelling in financial performance, member programs and internal operations.
These are just a few areas where Kentucky’s a star player. What do you have to add to the list?