Shift your spending to support Arizona businesses

By Chris Irish
Scottsdale Leadership Executive Director

If you’ve never met Kimber Lanning, you should.  She’s a small woman in her mid-thirties with lots of passion.  At a recent Scottsdale Leadership alumni event and in several articles in the Arizona Republic, Lanning talked about her grass-roots organization, Local First Arizona.

Did you know that out of every 1 dollar you spend in a nationally owned business only 13 cents stays in Arizona?  Or, that if you spent that same dollar in a locally owned business 45 cents would stay in our state.  That is a 288% increase, huge in these tough economic times.

Small businesses are the backbone of Arizona’s economy.  And while I think most of us agree that we’d like to support locally owned businesses, it isn’t always part of our spending thought-process.

Kimber Lanning and Local First Arizona are working to change that thought-process, one person at a time.  Their latest campaign, Shift Arizona, encourages consumers to shift 10% of their spending from nationally to locally owned businesses.  A study in Michigan found that if 600,000 people shifted just 10% of their spending to locally-owned business, it would generate $130 million dollars into the local economy!

With the holiday shopping season fast approaching, it’s a great time to take this challenge to heart. I’m willing to shift, are you?

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