Northeast Wyoming Economic Summit: 'We could easily throw our hands up and say it's over, but that is not our way.'

(Sheridan, Wyo.) — It has been a rough couple months here in Northeast Wyoming—the past week especially, Gillette City Councilor Bill Montgomery told a crowd at Sheridan College just this morning. "I spent three or four years years working with BNSF, so I feel the pain of recent hits here in Sheridan, as well as with what is happening in Gillette, Wright and Douglas," Montgomery said. "We could easily throw our hands up and say its over, but that is not our way. It has never been and never will be." Montgomery is participating along with other local, regional and state leaders in business and government in the Northeast Wyoming Economic Summit II. Robert Briggs, Planning and Economic Development Director for the City of Sheridan, echoed Montgomery. "There is a lot of concern, a lot of worry ... This means that opportunities like this (Summit) are so important. There are a lot of people who are worried, because if we are going to continue to prosper in the state, we are going to have to be creative. We are going to have to be innovative, and we are all going to have to work together," Briggs said. *Sheridan Mayor John Health addresses the crowd. / Pitchengine Communities* Sheridan Mayor John Heath said he would like to partner with Gillette and Buffalo to make Northeastern Wyoming a better place. "We are not going to talk about what is in front of us other than the opportunities. The challenges, we know. We are here to partner, we are here to team up, we are here to think outside the box," Heath said. "We are all in this together. Northeast Wyoming has an opportunity to put us once more on the map." Buffalo Mayor Michael Johnson agreed, calling the revitalization of Northeastern Wyoming a team work effort. "There are a lot of times when we are vying for economic development resources for businesses coming in where we are pitting with each other. But this is definitely a collaborative effort," Johnson said. "We can't do it alone. These communities can't do it alone, and we can't do it alone as municipalities, as counties. We have to have these teams together from all levels to do it." Montgomery continued that, "We all know how great Northeast Wyoming is. ... We all have the drive, the spirit to put our nose to the grindstone and figure out a way to re-imagine our region." At noon, the group will hear from Wyoming Secretary of State Ed Murray and Shawn Reese, CEO of the Wyoming Business Council. *Buffalo Mayor Michael Johnson addresses the Summit. / Pitchengine Communities* *Feature photo: Gillette City Councilor Bill Montgomery addresses the crowd at Sheridan College today. / Pitchengine Communities* #dally county17 #news