Blount Partnership News and Events

Early voting has begun for the May 1 Blount County Primary and Rockford City Election. Early voting runs through April 26. Click here for more election information, along with voting locations and sample ballots. Exercise your right to vote.
Check out our 105th installment of The Dialogue at the bottom of this email where we visit with Peter & Jeannie Ullrich of Ullrich Print Plus Powered by Proforma.
Make plans on April 23 to dine at Chili's in Alcoa as it will give back 10% of the proceeds to the Blount County Education Foundation (BCEF). BCEF is a non-profit organization that helps collect donated funds to give back to Blount County Schools. Please bring this flyer to make sure BCEF receives 10% of your total. No other discounts will apply.
graduation_cap.jpg Join us Feb. 20 at 8 a.m. at the Blount Partnership (201 S. Washington St., Maryville) as we hear from College Presidents; President Dr. Tom Bogart, Maryville College; President Dr. Anthony Wise, Pellissippi State; President Dwight Murphy, Tennessee College of Applied Technology; and Karen Brunner, Roane State, VP of Institutional Effectiveness/Research as they give us an update on what is happening in our community at the post secondary level. Please RSVP to Amy Lawson at to attend. 
Enjoy the aroma of BBQ and live music while visiting with federal, state and Blount County elected officials and mid-term candidates in a relaxed atmosphere at the Blount Partnership's Pigs & Politics Legislative Day sponsored by Vulcan Materials, Spectrum Enterprise, Full Service BBQ, Design Innovation,The Casual Pint, Maryville College, Campbell Party Rentals, Michael Brady, Inc., and K12, Inc., on Tuesday, April 24, from 4:30-6:30 p.m. at Alumni Gym on the Maryville College campus.

Tickets are on sale for $35 for the public, $25 for Blount County Chamber members, $10 for students with ID and ages five and under are free. They are available by calling 865.983.2241, with more information at

With the county primary and Rockford City election slated for May 1 and early voting beginning April 11, the event provides an enormous opportunity for the public to visit with candidates and elected officials personally as they mingle in a casual setting. No speeches or agenda is set.
The Tennessee Chamber of Commerce & Industry/Tennessee Manufacturers Association (TMA), is pleased to announce the 2018 TMA Statewide Tour. This 13-city tour is designed to promote the strength of Tennessee's rapidly expanding manufacturing community. It will provide an update on the state of Tennessee manufacturing, key economic and workforce updates and trends, a recap on Tennessee's 2018 Legislative Session & its impact on manufacturing, and conclude with a Q&A period.

What to Expect?
* One-hour presentation by TMA Director, Denise Rice, an industry veteran with 25+ years of experience in manufacturing
* Hear updates on real successes and challenges facing manufacturers
* Learn about key resources available to support manufacturers of all sizes-including key employee benefits
* FREE light breakfast or lunch with manufacturing peers

Who Should Attend?
* Manufacturing executives
* General managers
* Site managers
* Plant managers
* HR managers
* Key leaders
* Small, medium and large manufacturing facilities

**Space is limited. Pre-registration is required.

Join us April 27 at 8 a.m. at the Blount Partnership (201 S. Washington St., Maryville) for a State Legislative Briefing with Senator Art Swann and Representatives Jerome Moon and Bob Ramsey. Please RSVP here if you wish to attend.
Join us May 2 from 8:30-10 a.m. at the Blount Partnership (201 S. Washington St., Maryville) for an active shooter preparedness and response seminar. Conducted by A&A Investigation and Consulting group, this class provides you with the ability to understand the active shooter event and how to prepare for it. Continuing Education Units Available. If you are interested in attending, please register online here.
Cybersecurity is a vital part of keeping any business healthy. Whether you are a home-based sole proprietor or large corporation, you cannot afford a security breech. Meet with computer experts from Tech Nav to learn how to keep your business, data, and all your devices secure. Readily identify potential breeches and devise a cybersecurity action plan for your business. Tools will be provided to write your cybersecurity plan during the program.

So join us for ths free event April 19 from 9:30 a.m.-noon at 17 Market Square, #201 Knoxville, TN. Please note the new location. Click here to register.
It's Your Career! That's the focus of six free soft skills sessions offered in partnership by the Blount County Public Library, the Adult Education Foundation of Blount County and the Blount County Chamber of Commerce that are scheduled over the next eight months.

Registrations are currently being accepted online at for the fourth class entitled Free Resources for Professional Development set for April 27. This course qualifies for .2 CEU's awarded by Pellissippi State.

The other classes offered include How to Run an Effective Meeting, Improving Your Presentation Style - Speaking, Improving Your Presentation Style - Strategies for Engaging Presentations, Making Your Social Media Look Good and Creating Infographics for Promoting Your Business.

All classes are conducted in the Blount County Library's learning lab located at 508 N. Cusick in Maryville and limited to 50 participants. A complete class description is located on the registration site. All classes run from 8-10 a.m. with networking beginning at 7:30 a.m.
The "All Things Google" Lunch and Learn Technology Series is a professional development workshop series for adults who seek to learn about the Google platform, applications available through Google and how to access and use these applications (Google Sheets, Google Docs, Google Calendar, Google Drive, etc.) This technology series is offered by the Blount County Public Library with funding provided by the Tennessee State Library Archives Library Technology Training Grant.

This Lunch and Learn series meets in the new Learning Lab at the Blount County Public Library on Fridays each month from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. The $10 registration fee includes a box lunch and participants will have the opportunity to network. Each of the topics offered will be divided into 3-4 weekly sessions that can stand alone or be taken consecutively. A total of 50 classes will be offered with a new schedule released each month.

To register for classes in the Lunch and Learn Series please visit the Blount County Public Library website
Member-to-member promotions are here for April. Check out the offer from Vienna Coffee. See these and other promotions at member-to-member promotions. New offers are being posted almost daily, so check out the Blount County Chamber of Commerce Member-to-Member promotions online. This Member-to-Member Promotional Program offers you and your company the opportunity to market your products and services to the membership.
Here's how it works:
1. Submit a PDF of a service, product or discount you'd like to offer to the Chamber membership to Be sure to include an expiration date.
2. An email with all the promotions will be sent out on the final Monday of every month to our member database.
3. All promotions will be posted on
Think local first + Buy local when you can = Being a local!
For every $100 spent at a local business, $68 remained in the city while only $43 of each $100 spent at a chain retailer.
Find what you're looking for in the Chamber Directory.
Is your organization hosting an event in the community? Submit it here on our community calendar. If it's a tourism event or any good news about your business, please send it to us. We'd love to share it with the community.
Topping the Billboard Hot 100 chart this week in 1986 was "Rock Me Amadeus," by Austrian musician Falco. It topped the singles charts on both sides of the Atlantic. It was Falco's only number one hit in both the United States and the United Kingdom. Falco became the first German-speaking artist to be credited with a number-one single in all mainstream US pop singles charts.



April 23-29



Save the Date


The Dialogue

This feature is a question-and-answer session with a new Blount County Chamber member. So here we go with our 105th installment visiting with Peter & Jeannie Ullrich of Ullrich Print Plus Powered by Proforma. It is full service printer and marketing service that specializes in business to business printing and promotional products.
Tell me about Ullrich's history. A job transfer brought Jim Ullrich and his family to East Tennessee in the late 70s, and another job transfer was about to move him again, but his fondness for this area and the Knoxville community kept him here. So in his desire to "put down roots," he started Ullrich Printing in 1979. Ullrich Printing was sold to Jim's youngest son, Peter in 1997. In 2017, we partnered with Proforma to provide better services and products to our customers and became Ullrich Print Plus powered by Proforma. We are still family owned and family run. Constantly working to better help our customers with their branding, graphic communications and all of their marketing needs. That's why for nearly 40 years, we continue to love what we do!
Describe what Ullrich does. Ullrich Print Plus is a full service printer and marketing service that specializes in business to business printing and promotional products. We are here to help businesses with all of their graphic communications, such as but not limited to banners, stationary, posters, car wraps, promos, mailing services etc. so they are better able to brand and market themselves as well as serve their customers. Free local delivery and pickup is available. We also offer marketing services and design services.
How did it all begin? Peter started in the business at age 12 when his father Jim opened the doors to Ullrich Printing. When Jim thought of retiring in the mid 90's Peter decided that he would like to own the business, thus buying Ullrich Printing from his parents in 1997. Peter married Jeannie in 2001. She began working not long after they were married in the business.
What is your background? Peter started working for his father at the age of 12 in the bindery department. At 14 years old Peter could run the press. He worked after school through high school and then full time ever since.
Describe your customers. At Ullrich Print Plus we have a wide range of customers. Some of our customers are small businesses, while others are non-profits and large corporations. We have manufacturers and retail shops too.
What impacts your working environment? The print industry is highly impacted by all of these areas. Probably, we are most impacted by technology and the environment. Paper is a commodity and is subject to price changes on a daily basis. With the trucking industry being stretched thin these days, it impacts the cost of paper and thus the cost of printed marketing materials. Other environment issues that impact paper are wildfires, drought, and environmental regulations. Technology is ever changing in the print industry. Gone are the days of the meticulous Gutenberg press, now computers and high end digital presses push forward the industry into being both quicker and more specialized than ever.
What do you enjoy about the printing business? The business of printing is a customized business. People want their businesses to stand out and graphic marketing helps them do just that. Therefore, no two days are the same at the print shop. That is what Peter enjoys most. Our business has always been a family business too. Peter works with his wife and two out of five of his sisters. He always enjoyed working with both of his parents everyday before they retired.
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