New Augusta Chamber of Commerce President Sue Parr preparing for Red Carpet Tour

By: Jonathan Martin
By: Jonathan Martin

Masters Week is right around the corner, and it will soon be time for Augusta to pull out all the stops.

There's always a push to sway prospective companies into doing business here in the Garden City.

Thursday, News 12's Jonathan Martin sat down with new chamber of commerce president Sue Parr to find out what's planned for her first Red Carpet Tour.

As the head of Augusta's biggest business organization, Sue Parr knows she has her work cut out for her during Masters Week...but she has some help too.

And tonight, only on 12, she tells us who and what we can expect at this year's tour.

"I'm a golfer and I'm just thrilled. I can't wait," Parr says.

And with a name like Sue Parr, that might not be surprising.

As the brand new president of Augusta's Chamber of Commerce, Parr knows she'll spend most of Masters Week rolling out the red carpet.

"We want to make sure the red carpet experience for all of our guests is bar none, the best they've ever had," she says.

The Red Carpet Tour and Augusta Showcase: a week of wining, dining, and networking designed to lure new businesses to the Garden City and expand existing ones. So what's going to make this tour different from year's past?

"We have a particular focus this year to make sure that we have venues, receptions and so forth that will give our elected officials and community leaders an opportunity to interact with those guests," Parr says.

But Parr is not working alone. Walter Sprouse, Director of Economic Development in Richmond County, has already been networking.

He was able to give us a few names to expect.

"The Stallback Company will be coming, we have a number of those people coming, we have a company called IBI that's coming," Sprouse says.

And if history is any indicator, the money shelled out for the tour may be worth it.

Since 1988, tour officials claim to have generated close to $4 billion through investments and 25,000 jobs through new businesses, most notably Sitel in south Augusta.

And the tour committee is hoping other companies will do the same and make Augusta their home.

"You never know where your next big business is going to come from," Parr says.

Walter Sprouse says that while the golf tournament is what gets those companies here to visit, when it comes to actually locating a business here, the companies are really looking at the workforce, technical colleges, transportation, and wastewater capacity.

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