Cherokee County's BGEN Initiative
Written By: Brian Ziegelheafer, BGEN
KNOW(2)‘s BGEN (pronounced “begin”) is an inclusive initiative whose primary purpose is to advance economic development and improvement through innovation, partnerships, building community capacity, investing in next-generation business leaders and entrepreneurs. BGEN’s main activities include assisting new businesses in the startup phase to include retail space, private office space, a virtual entrepreneurship program, as well as creating and strengthening authentic partnerships with Cherokee County schools, colleges, and community organizations.
Of the six counties in South Carolina that are part of the U.S. Appalachian Regional Commission, only Cherokee County is designated as “at-risk”. The county’s unemployment and poverty rates are comparatively high while educational achievement and per capita income are comparatively low.