"After living in Brussels, Belgium, and New York City for several years, when the University of Utah was recruiting my husband for a job I thought it was the end of the world. But now I know that women can come to Utah and be fulfilled through their work."
So said Dr. Noemi Mattis, a psychologist in private practice, who started her work in Utah at the U. Mattis spoke Monday during a luncheon in the Little America Hotel, another in a series held by Gov. Norm Bangerter designed to develop pride in Utah.Mattis said when her husband was recruited for the U. job, university officials had her meet with several women who gave an idea of what it's like to live in the state. She was very impressed because she had the chance to meet with "some incredible women."
When recruiting for jobs, in many instances a company is recruiting for two careers because so many women are working these days, Mattis said, so it is necessary to satisfy both people.
Mattis said she recently was showing Salt Lake City to a visitor from South America and they drove by Bangerter's house at 603 E. South Temple. The visitor asked her why there were no policemen around the house and Mattis said in Salt Lake City nobody worries about the governor getting shot, an example of the quality of life.
Richard Thomas, plant manager for the relatively new McDonnell Douglas plant in west Salt Lake City, gave a glowing report on why his company selected the city to build an aerospace plant.
Thomas, who came from Los Angeles, said his wife won't budge from Utah because they are satisfied with the change. Thomas said the city is strategically located because much of the aerospace work is one on the West Coast and he can get needed items within two hours.
He listed as pluses the people with their hard working traditions, balanced labor laws, high productivity, lower health care costs, lower workmen's compensation insurance, low absenteeism, lower taxes in relation to California and lower utility rates.
"We are more than satisfied with Utah," he said.
Another speaker was Robert Salmon, vice president and general manager of Fidelity Investments, a mutual funds company, who said his company could have located anywhere because advanced communication is available. "But the great strength of Utah is its people," he said.
Salmon said the Salt Lake office originally was scheduled to have more than 100 employees, but because of the productivity and professionalism exhibited by the employees, the office was expanded to more than 700 employees and that should increase more in the next few years.
He praised the ongoing "Utah: A Pretty, Great State" campaign by the Utah Economic Development Corp. because "we need to convince ourselves to send a message outside the state that we are a pretty, great people."
Bangerter said the state economy is improving, unemployment is down and the job growth rate has tripled from a year ago. He urged every Utahn to assist in the programs to create new jobs so that young people will remain in the state.
Jon Huntsman, president of Huntsman Chemical Co. and now Bangerter's ambassador for economic development, said Utah doesn't need to take a back seat to any state in economic development, but it will take a combined effort between government and private industry to create jobs and help business.
He cited the Centers of Excellence, the federal procurement program and job training efforts as excellent examples of what the governor is doing for the Utah economy.