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Awards & Accolades

Dubuque Wins the Big Muddy Cup

2014
The Greater Dubuque area is the recipient of Site Selection Magazine’s Big Muddy Cup. This new award recognizes the top metro area along the entire length of the Mississippi River for new and expanded private-sector facility projects per capita over an 18 month period.

Corporate projects in the Greater Dubuque area came from such companies as Hormel, Camoplast Solideal, Brightwood Corp. and software firm Design Mill. In Site Selection's 2013 Top Metro ranking, Dubuque also tied for first place in its population tier with Altoona, Pa., and Sioux City, Iowa-Neb.-S.D.

To read the article, click here

Dubuque Scores U.S. Top Metro Ranking

2014
Dubuque has been recognized by the nation's leading publication for site-location and corporate real estate professionals, Site Selection Magazine, for business growth and expansion. Dubuque tied with two other communities for first place in the Top Metro ranking for cities with populations between 50,000 and 200,000. The Dubuque metro area was credited with fourteen projects within the criteria.

In the publication, Dubuque's diverse projects, ranging from Hormel Foods to Bodine Electric, were featured. Hormel Foods represented the area's largest project in 2013 with their $36 Million capital investment in the community which will bring two new product lines to the Progressive Processing facility.

To read the article, click here

Dubuque Receives EPA Smart Growth Achievement Award


2014

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has named Dubuque a recipient of its 2013 National Award for Smart Growth Achievement.

Competing in the “Corridor or Neighborhood Revitalization” category, Dubuque was selected for revitalization efforts in the Historic Millwork District and Washington Neighborhood. Winning entries were selected based on their effectiveness in creating sustainable communities; showing innovative smart growth planning and implementation; establishing a robust public involvement process; generating partnerships among public, private, and nonprofit stakeholders; and serving as national models.

To learn more about this recognition, view a video or booklet produced that describes Dubuque’s smart growth efforts and the Historic Millwork District.

Dubuque's Downtown Revitalization Touted in National Publication

2014
Governing, a national magazine, features the revitalization of downtown Dubuque in an article titled, “Corporate Entrepreneurs Are at the Heart of Downtown Revitalizations.”

The article describes the transformation of Dubuque’s downtown from the high vacancy and unemployment rates of the 1980s to recent success stories including the IBM Global Delivery Center in the Roshek Building, the ongoing revitalization of the Historic Millwork District, and the Smarter Sustainable Dubuque initiative.

To read the full article, click here

Dubuque Named a “Crown Community”

2013

Dubuque is one of only three cities in the country to be named a “Crown Community” by American City & County magazine. The award acknowledges the recent completion of Dubuque’s Water & Resource Recovery Center project, a three-year, $65 million upgrade of the city’s wastewater treatment facility.

To read the full article, click here.

Double Win for Greater Dubuque: Awarded Top Honors at Regional Conference

2013
Greater Dubuque Development has been awarded top honors in two separate categories, Business Retention and Expansion and Workforce Development, by the Mid-America Economic Development Council. The awards were presented during the annual Mid-America Competitiveness Conference & Site Selector Forum, held in Chicago on December 8-10. This annual award ceremony recognizes excellence in economic development throughout the ten-state Mid-America region.

To learn more about this ranking, click here.

Dubuque Named 10th “Best-Performing” Small Metro

2013
The Dubuque metropolitan area has been named the 10th “Best-Performing” Small Metro by Milken Institute. Dubuque climbed three spots in the annual ranking.

The Milken Institute's “Best-Performing” cities survey showed where jobs are being created and sustained in metropolitan areas across the nation. The index used measures of job, wage and technology performance to rank the nation's 200 large metropolitan areas and 179 smaller metros.

To view the full listing, click here.

Dubuque Named One of America’s Best Small Cities to Move To

2013
Dubuque has been named to MoveToBlog’s listing of the “America’s Best Small Cities to Move to.” Dubuque ranks 14th.

The study evaluated metropolitan areas with a population of less than 60,000 citizens. Communities were compared based on the following criteria: cost of living, crime, median household income, unemployment rate, median home price, and homes for sale per capita.

To read the full article, click here.

Dubuque Recognized as Leader in National Guide to Greening Cities

2013
Dubuque has been recognized as a national leader in developing partnerships and measuring community progress related to sustainability by “The Guide to Greening Cities.” In this publication, Dubuque was featured along with other cities nationally renowned for their sustainability efforts, including New York, San Antonio, Minneapolis, Denver, Asheville and Philadelphia.

Dubuque Named One of the Most Secure Places to Live in the U.S.

2013
Dubuque was named to Farmers Insurance’s listing of the “Most Secure Places to Live in the U.S.” Dubuque ranked 10th on the Small City listing (communities with a population less than 150,000).

The study of metropolitan areas considered criteria including economic stability, crime statistics, extreme weather, risk of natural disasters, housing depreciation, foreclosures, air quality, environmental hazards, life expectancy, motor vehicle fatalities and employment numbers.

Greater Dubuque's Workforce Solutions Receives Top International Award: Opportunity Dubuque Program Honored in Philadelphia

2013
Opportunity Dubuque received a Gold Excellence in Economic Development Award in the human capital category for communities with populations of 25,000 – 200,000 at the International Economic Development Council Annual Conference. The event was held October 6-9 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Opportunity Dubuque is a collaborative effort of Dubuque Works, Northeast Iowa Community College, Dubuque Community Schools, Iowa Works, East Central Intergovernmental Association, Community Foundation of Greater Dubuque, and Project Hope. The initiative’s goal is to upgrade workers’ skills, create non-credit to credit career pathways, and ultimately fill local employer demand for talent in high-wage, advanced manufacturing careers. Funding for the program includes local Workforce Investment Act dollars, NICC Gap Tuition assistance, Economic Development Administration grant dollars, funding from the local workforce umbrella “Dubuque Works” (funded by Mystique Casino, City of Dubuque, and Dubuque County), and many in-kind hours of service from all partners involved.

Dubuque’s Economy Fastest-Growing in Iowa Last Year, 27th Fastest in U.S.

2013
According to a report release by the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, Dubuque’s economy grew 5.1 percent last year over 2011, the fastest-growing city in Iowa and the 27th-fastest nationally.

To view an article regarding this recognition, click here.

Dubuque Scores U.S. Top 20 Ranking from Forbes

2013
Dubuque has scored another U.S. Top 20 recognition ranking 14th on Forbes’ list of “Best Small Places for Business and Career”.

The ranking took into consideration 12 metrics related to job growth (past and projected), costs (business and living), income growth over the past five years, educational attainment (college and high school) and projected economic growth through 2014.  

To view Forbes’ profile of Dubuque, click here.

Dubuque Soars in Upward Mobility

2013
Recent findings from the Equality of Opportunity Project show that children raised in the greater Dubuque area are among the most likely in the nation to move upwards into a higher income class. The study, conducted by researchers at Harvard University and the University of California, Berkeley, found that children who were born to parents in the nation’s lowest income quintile had a 17.9% chance of being in the highest income quintile before reaching age 30. This is well above the national average of 10.6% and, of the 741 metropolitan commuting areas examined, places Dubuque in the top 60.

When compared to similar-sized commuting areas with a population between 150,000 and 200,000, Dubuque ranks first out of 58, and by a sizeable margin; Dubuque’s 17.9% likelihood is 2.1% greater than the next-highest probability, and is nearly double the national average of 9%. Dubuque ranks first among the ten largest cities in Iowa, also, with nearly a 3% higher probability than the next-largest city at 14%.

To view the study findings, click here.

Dubuque Listed Among '10 Great Places to Live'

2013
Dubuque was named to Kiplinger's Personal Finance's list of 10 Great Places to Live for 2013. 

The rankings place an emphasis on small and mid-size cities, considering metro areas with a population of 1 million or less that have good jobs, reasonably priced homes, decent schools and access to great health care, according to a news release.

To view the full article, click here.

Sustainable Dubuque Named to Top 25 Innovations in Government

2013
The Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation at the John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University has named Smarter Sustainable Dubuque as one of the Top 25 programs in this year’s Innovations in American Government Award competition. The Top 25 government initiatives represent the dedicated efforts of city, state, federal, and tribal governments and address a host of policy issues including crime prevention, economic development, environmental and community revitalization, employment, education, and health care.

Dubuque Named All-America City

2013
For the third time in six years, Dubuque has been named an All-America City. The All-America City award recognizes communities whose citizens work together to identify and tackle community-wide challenges and achieve uncommon results. Dubuque’s team told the story of the City’s successes by highlighted three community-driven projects: veteran-oriented programs, workforce development efforts, and the Historic Millwork District revitalization initiative. Awarded by the National Civic League, it is the nation’s most prestigious and oldest civic recognition program.

Dubuque Scores U.S. Top 5 Ranking

2013
The nation’s leading publication for site-location and corporate real estate professionals has placed Dubuque with some elite company for business growth and expansion.  Site Selection Magazine’s annual “Top Metropolitan Areas” places Dubuque at 5th in the U.S. for Metro areas with under 200,000 people.  

Dubuque Recognized for Outstanding Economic Development

2013
Area Development Magazine has recognized the Greater Dubuque region for excellence in economic performance and a strong, healthy business climate. In the 2013 Leading Location Report, Dubuque’s ranking in the Top 100 Overall Cities climbed to 12th best in the United States, up from 16th in 2012. Dubuque was the only city in Iowa to place in the top 20.

Dubuque was also highly ranked in six of the other categories. The rankings included:

  • Top 20 Midwest Cities: Dubuque ranked 3rd;
  • Top 20 Midwest Cities – “Now” Cities: Dubuque ranked 6th;
  • Top 30 Small Cities: Dubuque ranked 5th; up from 12th in 2012;
  • Top 20 Small Cities in Economic Strength: Dubuque ranked 5th;
  • Top 20 Small Cities in Recovery Cities: Dubuque ranked 4th;
  • Top 20 Small Cities – “Now” Cities: Dubuque ranked 6th.
“This recognition serves as a reminder of Dubuque’s commitment to growth,” Rick Dickinson, 
President and CEO of Greater Dubuque Development Corporation, said. “With strong public-private 
partnerships and a highly skilled workforce, our community continues to be one of the premier 
economic regions in the United States with other cities striving to emulate our successes. The 
investors, Board of Directors, and staff at Greater Dubuque Development continue the good work of 
bringing What’s NEXT for Dubuque,” added Dickinson.

This recognition serves as a reminder of Dubuque’s commitment to growth,” Rick Dickinson, President and CEO of Greater Dubuque Development Corporation, said. “With strong public-private partnerships and a highly skilled workforce, our community continues to be one of the premier economic regions in the United States with other cities striving to emulate our successes. The investors, Board of Directors, and staff at Greater Dubuque Development continue the good work of bringing What’s NEXT for Dubuque,” added Dickinson.   

Opportunity Dubuque Wins Impact Award

2013
Opportunity Dubuque was awarded the 365 Impact Award for Economic Development. Impact Awards recognize those who choose to make an everyday effort to impact the world around them 365 days a year -those who believe in our community and are willing to do something to make it better for everyone.

Opportunity Dubuque is a collaborative effort of Dubuque Works, Northeast Iowa Community College, Dubuque Community Schools, Iowa Works, East Central Intergovernmental Association, Community Foundation of Greater Dubuque, and Project Hope. The initiative was launched with the goal of upgrading workers’ skills, creating non-credit to credit career pathways, and ultimately filling local employer demand for talent in high-wage advanced manufacturing careers.

Opportunity Dubuque Wins Top Workforce Honors

2012
Opportunity Dubuque was awarded the top workforce honor by MAEDC, Mid-America Economic Development Council at the Competitiveness Conference & Site Selector Forum on December
2-4.

Opportunity Dubuque is a collaborative effort of Dubuque Works, Northeast Iowa Community College, Dubuque Community Schools, Iowa Works, East Central Intergovernmental Association, Community Foundation of Greater Dubuque, and Project Hope. The initiative was launched with the goal of upgrading workers’ skills, creating non-credit to credit career pathways, and ultimately filling local employer demand for talent in high-wage advanced manufacturing careers.

100 Best Communities for Youth

2012
Because of its commitment to provide healthy, safe and caring environments for young people, Dubuque was named as one of the 100 best communities for youth. Dubuque was one of 37 communities to win the award five times.

"The 100 Best Communities for Young People are taking bold and effective steps to help their youth graduate and lead healthy, productive lives," said Alma J. Powell, Chair, America's Promise Alliance. "Each community has proven that they are developing programs and implementing initiatives to provide young people with the essential resources they need to graduate from high school and succeed in college and a 21st century career."

Dubuque Named All-America City

2012
Dubuque was named an All-America City by the National Civic League.  Dubuque received this award based on its ambitious plan to ensure that more children are reading at grade level criteria by the end of third grade. The community was one of 14 awardees selected from 32 finalists. This is the nation’s most prestigious and oldest civic recognition program.

In addition to being named an All-America City, Dubuque was also named a Community Solutions PaceSetter by the Campaign for Grade-Level Reading for its exemplary leadership and innovation in addressing the vexing challenges that keep many low-income students from learning to read proficiently. 

Area Development

Dubuque Recognized for Outstanding Economic Development

2012
The greater Dubuque area has once again been ranked among the best of the best in economic development by Area Development Magazine, a leading executive publication covering corporate site selection and facility planning. The 2012 Leading Locations report ranked Dubuque in five categories. Rankings include:

  • Top 100 Overall Cities: Dubuque ranked 16th; the only city in Iowa ranking in the top 25
  • Top 20 Midwest Cities: Dubuque ranked 3rd
  • Top 50 Small Cities: Dubuque ranked 7th
  • Top 25 Small Cities – Economic Strength Factors: Dubuque ranked 6th 
  • Top 25 Small Cities – “Recession Busting” Factors: Dubuque ranked 8th

Greater Dubuque Development Business Retention & Expansion Program Scores Top Honors

2012
Greater Dubuque Development received first place honors in the category for “Best Overall Business Retention and Expansion Program” from the Professional Developers of Iowa (PDI).  

Greater Dubuque Development’s business retention and expansion program, InfoAction, has been active for more than 10 years with staff conducting over 250 on-site visits per year.  During this time, Greater Dubuque Development Corporation has had a direct role with 83 private-sector expansion projects, totaling more than $311.5 million in capital investment, 3,289,480 square feet of construction, and at least 2,546 direct new jobs. 

Additionally, Greater Dubuque staff has provided direct assistance, on issues from A to Z, on more than 1,450 occasions, including 474 instances last year alone.  This latest recognition represents the 7th award given to Greater Dubuque’s InfoAction program in the past 3 years.  

Dubuque Honored Nationally for Cultural Diversity Efforts

2012
The National League of Cities’ National Black Caucus of Local Elected Officials has awarded the City of Dubuque second-place honors in its 2012 City Cultural Diversity Awards. The City of Dubuque received second place honors specifically for a community engagement program that is a collaborative effort between City staff, leaders, and residents designed to ensure that: 1) City staff and programs are effectively meeting the needs of a growing multicultural community, 2) residents of diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds are acknowledged and engaged in community life, and 3) City policy decisions include the perspectives of the range of cultures represented in our community. Over the past three years in particular, the City has allocated staff and resources to expand cultural programming in the community, to bring people of various cultural backgrounds together to solve community problems, and to develop cultural community groups to enhance involvement and communication between residents and staff.

“We appreciate this national recognition of the hard work we, as a community, have done toward creating a more inclusive city,” said Dubuque Mayor Roy D. Buol. “We continue to see demographic changes and growth in our community, and we acknowledge that there is an ever-present need to continue in our efforts.”

The awards honor community leadership in developing creative and effective programs to improve cultural diversity through a collaborative process with city officials, community leaders, and residents.

Dubuque Ranks Second in Nation for Health System Performance


2012

The Commonwealth Fund has ranked Dubuque second in the nation for overall health system performance. The second place ranking was behind only St. Paul, Minnesota. This survey comparing 306 communities tracked 43 indicators spanning four dimensions of health system performance: access, prevention and treatment, costs and potentially avoidable hospital use, and health outcomes.

Dubuque Named 15th “Best-Performing” Small Metro

2011
The Milken Institute’s 2011 Best-Performing Cities Index ranks the Dubuque metropolitan area 15th out of 179 small U.S. metropolitan areas. Dubuque moved up 40 spots from 2010’s 55th place ranking.

Greater Dubuque Development Wins Top Honors

2011
Greater Dubuque Development’s Dubuque Works and AccessDubuqueJobs.com were awarded top honors by MAEDC, Mid-America Economic Development Council for their workforce development programs.

Dubuque Works was awarded first place for the collaborative effects of its seven local partners; Greater Dubuque Development, Telegraph Herald, Chamber of Commerce, Iowa Workforce, Northeast Iowa Community College, Dubuque Area Labor Management Council, and Community Foundation of Greater Dubuque, in successfully addressing workforce challenges and developing solutions to overcome the challenges. Our cutting-edge website, AccessDubuqueJobs.com, received second place honors as it assists millions of job seekers nationwide search for local jobs while allowing local employers the ability to attract a qualified workforce.

Existing Business Program Cited for Excellence and Innovation

2011
Greater Dubuque Development was recognized by Blane, Canada, Ltd. for its business retention and expansion efforts and was recognized as one of the best in the industry being awarded the Critical Business Partner award. This top honor was awarded to Greater Dubuque Development for the key role it plays with the region’s existing business base.

Dubuque in the U.S. Top 20 for Job Growth


2011 
The Dubuque metropolitan statistical area ranks 18th nationally, the only Midwestern region in the U.S. Top 20 job growth rankings by Moody's. Moody's analyzes the top 392 metro areas in the country. 

100 Best Communities for Youth

2011
Because of its commitment to provide healthy, safe and caring environments for young people, Dubuque was named as one of the 100 best communities for youth.

"The 100 Best Communities for Young People are taking bold and effective steps to help their youth graduate and lead healthy, productive lives," said Alma J. Powell, Chair, America's Promise Alliance. "Each community has proven that they are developing programs and implementing initiatives to provide young people with the essential resources they need to graduate from high school and succeed in college and a 21st century career."

Dubuque Ranks #5 for Resiliency

2011
Dubuque was named one of the most resilient cities in the nation. The city was ranked fifth out of 361 cities nationwide in a study of resiliency capacity that evaluates a community's economic capacity to bounce back from adversity, strength of demographics, and community connectivity.

Dubuque Works Wins Impact Award

2011
Dubuque Works
was awarded the 365 Impact Award for Economic Development. Impact Awards recognize those who choose to make an everyday effort to impact the world around them 365 days a year - those who believe in our community and are willing to do something to make it better for everyone.

Grantors of the award commented, "Yes, Dubuque Works quite well but that isn’t just an accident. As a unique multi-organizational approach to training and workforce development, this award winner is making a real and lasting difference in the future of the greater Dubuque region. For helping Dubuque "Work" better than ever, even in this economically challenging time, the 2010 365 Impact Award for Economic Development goes to Dubuque Works."

Dubuque Named One of the Ten Smartest Cities on the Planet

2011
Fast Company, a business magazine, recently named Dubuque among their Top 10 Smartest Cities on the Planet. The magazine focused on IBM's impact on the city and the 2009 declaration that Dubuque would become the "first integrated, smart city" in America, with interlocking systems watching the interplay between water, electricity and transportation.

Dubuque was the only city in America on the list, sitting at No. 8, behind Songdo, South Korea; Lavasa, India; PlanIT Valley, Portugal; Skolkovo, Russia; Masdar, United Arab Emirates; Wuxi, China; and King Abdullah Economic City, Saudi Arabia. Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, and Nano City, India, rounded out the list.

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