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18 Cities in Cornerstone League Area Make Forbes 'Best Places for Business and Careers' List
Monday, August 12, 2013 6:00 AM

The U.S. economy may be sputtering along at 2 percent growth, but there are places with strong business climates, fueled by low costs and educated labor forces. Forbes crunched the numbers for the 15th annual list of the “Best Places for Business and Careers.”

Cities in the Cornerstone area listed in the top 200 include:

City Business & Career Ranking Job Growth Ranking
Oklahoma City 8 18
San Antonio 11 9
Dallas 13 21
Austin 14 2
Fort Worth – Arlington 15 13
Houston 25 7
Fayetteville 28 34
Little Rock 32 65
Tulsa 47 98
El Paso 53 11
Lubbock 73 14
Brownsville 93 6
McAllen 98 3
Fort Smith 127 166
Killeen 138 8
Corpus Christi 140 10
Beaumont 147 83
Laredo 174 4

Mike Kloiber, president and CEO Oklahoma City-based Tinker FCU, tells the Leaguer that he’s not surprised to see Oklahoma City on the list.

“We have a diverse economy in Oklahoma City, and we are not reliant on any one industry,” notes Kloiber.

Job GrowthOil and gas is certainly a major industry in Oklahoma City; however, Kloiber says agriculture and aerospace also fuel the local economy. And while a significant number of military bases across the country have closed, in Oklahoma City, the military base there has grown.

“Businesses are coming to Oklahoma City because of the overall quality of life,” says Kloiber. “Not only do we have affordable housing, but we also have revitalized our downtown by adding the Bricktown area with shopping, food and fun. This included the NBA Thunder basketball team, and baseball and hockey. Our river area also provides many sources of recreation.” 

How are credit unions contributing to the job growth? According to the Cornerstone Credit Union League’s research team:

  • Arkansas credit unions employ 703 full-time workers and 103 part-time workers
  • Oklahoma credit unions employ 2,735 full-time workers and 387 part-time workers
  • Texas credit unions employee 19,270 full-time workers and 2,712 part-time workers