A Picture Is Worth a 1,000 Words

Originally submitted to Utah Business.

Gov. Gary Herbert hosted the 12th annual Utah Economic Summit last month. Approximately 1,000 Utah business and community leaders attended to learn about and discuss business opportunities in the Beehive State. I was honored to report on the Utah economy.

With a nod to the internationally acclaimed Economist magazine, I worked with a talented graphic designer to create covers for a fictitious Utah Economist magazine. Each cover conveys an important economic issue. I thought Utah Business readers would enjoy seeing these covers and the important message that inspired each one.

Let the Good Times Roll

Utah is in its eighth year of economic expansion. It’s the second longest in our history. These are prosperous times and worth celebrating.

Past the Peak

As good as the economy is, it peaked in 2015 and continues on a path of moderation. Wise business leaders will carefully monitor trends and be ready to act on emerging information.

Division, Uncertainty, Disruption

Three words capture several of the challenges in Washington, D.C. – division, uncertainty and disruption. Our economy will be stronger if we unify, create more certainty, and welcome needed disruptions.

We’ve got it all!

New numbers show Utah has the most well diversified economy in the nation.

Falling Behind – The growing needs of low- and middle-income Utahns

We have a moral and ethical obligation to help people in need. One in five moderate- to low-income Utah households face a severe housing cost burden.


We have the greatest snow on earth, but where is it? A disappointing snow year served as a reminder that climate change is real. The challenge is to agree on policies that address it.

Breathe Easy, we have the #1 economy in the nation

Utah’s air quality is significantly better than three decades ago. Still, the best performing economy in America must do more.

Rising Costs

Utah economic performance is moderating because of rising land, labor, housing, and interest costs.

The Silent Recession

The plight of rural Utah looms large as eight rural counties continue to contract even as urban counties thrive. We call it Utah’s silent recession. The good news is the state is making progress.

Cultural Integration

Diverse populations contribute four of each 10 new people to Utah’s population growth annually. Utah is diversifying, and the dynamics of change are intensifying.

SLC Inland Port Authority

An inland port will deepen the state’s connection to the global supply chain and create jobs. We need to resolve the land use and governance issues to achieve the greatest good.

Catalyzing. What’s the point at the Point of the Mountain

There is nowhere in the United States where two, rapidly growing metropolitan areas are joining together with 20,000 acres of developable land at their nexus. What’s more, the state owns 700 acres of land right in the center (prison site). We get once chance to do this right and catalyze economic growth.

It’s a great time to be in business in Utah. These Utah Economist covers provide insights into the important issues for the coming year.