Some of Hamilton County’s largest employers are getting recognition for being among the best in the nation.
Four local companies landed on Forbes’ list of best large employers, and two have been recognized for being inclusive + focusing on equity.
🏆 Forbes Along with a market research firm, Forbessurveyed 50,000 Americans working for businesses with at least 1,000 employees. Participants were asked to nominate other businesses, as well as rank their willingness to recommend their own employer to family and friends.
The results rank 500 large and 500 midsize employers that got the most recommendations.
• No. 129: Tennessee Valley Authority, 9,989 employees • No. 448: Volkswagen Group, 670,000 employees • No. 461: State of Tennessee, 41,600 employees • No. 486: BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee, 6,700 employees
Volkswagen Chattanooga has about 3,800 employees. | Photo by Volkswagen
Bonus:Mohawk Industries, which is less than an hour away in Calhoun, Georgia, also made the list. With 41,600 employees, it ranked at No. 373.
*The above employee totals are for the entire company. For example, VW has about 3,800 local employees. And 5,625 BCBST employees are in Chattanooga.
🏆 Human Rights Campaign Two Chattanooga companies (including one that made the Forbes list) have been recognized by the Human Rights Campaign.
The campaign foundation’s corporate equality index is a national benchmarking tool that looks at corporate policies and practices that relate to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer employees.
This year, the Human Rights Campaign recognized 767 businesses that met all the criteria to be listed as a Best Place to Work for LGBTQ Equality. They included:
Intelligent.com — which aims to sift through internet noise + data to provide valuable information — ranked UTC in the top 50 six times.
Ranked programs: • The UTC College of Engineering and Computer Science’s Master of Science — engineering management program • The Bachelor of Science in criminal justice in the Department of Social, Cultural, and Justice Studies • UTC Master of Education — clinical mental health counseling program • School of nursing, Bachelor of Science + overall program
Tell us why your company should be recognized.
Love the company you work for? Maybe your boss goes out of their way to make everyone feel appreciated or your team feels like family. We want to hear all the positive things you have to say about your workplace.
Weather ○ 43º | Cloudy then clearing | 0%chance of rain
Closing ○ After 19 years, St. Elmo’s Mojo Burrito location (3950 Tennessee Ave.) will be closing soon, according to an announcement on Instagram. 😔 The pandemic has hurt the business, which will still serve customers from its Red Bank location (1800 Dayton Blvd.) ○ Two Riverfront establishments are closing at the end of the month. Blue Plate and ROBAR (191 Chestnut St.) will close on Feb. 28, after owner RAG Hospitality opted not to renew leases. Blue Plate has been a local staple since 2006 + ROBAR followed in 2015. Both will be open through Feb. 28.
Announced ○ The Chattanooga Lookouts will start its 120-game season at home on May 4. They will take on the Rocket City Trash Pandas for the first game in more than 20 months at AT&T Field. After an opening six-game homestand the team will go on the road for 12 games + return home over Memorial Day weekend. 🧢
Biz ○ A top marketing executive with TripAdvisor, Steven Paganelli will give the keynote address at the Chattanooga Tourism Summit. The March 9 event will focus on the recovery of the county’s tourism economy + will include a musical performance, breakout sessions for hospitality/ tourism professionals, and an update on the region’s tourism economy.
TryThis ○ If you’re a homeowner who could use help with repairs or renovations that will save money on power bills, EPB is encouraging you to apply now for its Home Uplift program, which is done in partnership with TVA. Those who qualify could receive home improvements at no cost to help them reduce their power bills. (WDEF)
History ○ The location of the Bessie Smith Cultural Center used to be a successful lodge called the Martin Hotel, which Robert Martin opened. The spot was included in area Green Books + provided lodging to Black WW11 soldiers, as well as hosting Black celebrities and other travelers who wouldn’t have been safe elsewhere during segregation.
State ○ After a Tennessee state representative proposed erecting a statue of Dolly Parton, the country music + movie icon has declined the offer. She said that she is humbled by the suggestion to put her likeness at the Ryman Auditorium but that “given all that’s going on in the world, I don’t think putting me on a pedestal is appropriate at this time.” 💖 (WDEF)
FeaturedDeal ○ Plastic Surgery Group| 20% off Epionce Renewal Moisturizers | Use code RENEW at check out | Expires Mon., Feb. 22 Ⓟ
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And, speaking of yoga — we’re working on a guide to let area residents know their options for joining in on the practice.
Email us with suggestions of your favorite studio, teacher, at-home workout (local preferably) or other yoga tips + tricks. Don’t forget to give some explanation if it’s needed. We may use them in an upcoming article. 🙏
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Show ○ Trey Lewis | Fri., Feb. 19 | 8 p.m. | The Signal, 1810 Chestnut St. | $20 – $25 | Birmingham native and country music singer Trey Lewis is coming to Chattanooga. All attendees under 18 must be accompanied by an adult. 🎵 ○ Alien Excursion w/ The Other Brothers | Fri., Feb. 19 | 8:00 p.m-11:45 p.m. | Wanderlinger Brewing Company, 1208 King St. | Free | Enjoy a night of soul music at Wanderlinger. You must be 21 years old or older to attend.
Saturday ○ Wizards Beer Festival | Sat., Feb 20. | 6:30 p.m. | The Signal, 1810 Chestnut St. | $35 – $45 | With over 20 beers to try, you’re sure to have a ✨magical✨ night. The Signal will be transformed into a wizarding verse of wonders. This event is 21+. 🍺 ○ Valentines Kard Readings | Sat., Feb. 20 | 1:30-5 p.m. | The Laughing Buddha, 4810 Hixson Pike | $25-$50 | Get yourself a love-themed tarot card reading in celebration of Valentine’s Day. To avoid walk-in rates, text or call 423-504-3923 to make an appointment.💖 ○ Et Cetera (ETC) | Sat., Feb. 20 | 8:30 p.m.-12 a.m. | Wanderlinger Brewing Company, 1208 King St. | $10 | Put on a mask and bring your dancing shoes. ETC is playing groovy, dance-worthy music at Wanderlinger.🎵
Sunday ○ Danimal & Friends | Sun., Feb. 21 | 3 p.m. | Backstage Chattanooga, 29 Station St. | Free | Enjoy your Sunday afternoon by listening to some tunes by Danimal and his friends Jessica + Ian. 🎸
Disclaimer: It is up to readers’ discretion to determine whether they feel comfortable participating in any mentioned events based on COVID-19 protocols and precautions. If you have questions, please contact the event’s organizers directly.