Janice Rutherford

San Bernardino County Board of Supervisors Chairwoman Janice Rutherford delivers the annual State of the County address Wednesday evening at Citizens Business Bank Arena in Ontario. (John Valenzuela/Staff Photographer)

By Joe Nelson, The Sun
Posted: 02/26/14, 8:07 PM PST |

ONTARIO >> People will need to think bigger and collaborate more to help San Bernardino County meet its future economic, educational and quality-of-life goals, Board of Supervisors Chairwoman Janice Rutherford told more than 1,000 people at Wednesday evening’s State of the County event at Citizens Business Bank Arena.

“My challenge to you tonight is to think bigger than getting a job. That’s not going to be enough to sustain future development,” Rutherford said.

She said the county needs to usher in a new era of entrepreneurship, the kind that saw Jack Brown’s success with Stater Bros. Markets, Jack Dangermond founding Esri in Redlands and the Lewis family responsible for residential and commercial developments across the Inland Empire.

It’s that same kind of entrepreneurial spirit seed that needs to be planted in the county’s youth so it sprouts and grows into something great, Rutherford said.

“Our young people can do better and aspire higher, and they will do it because you people in this room will go out there and encourage them to do it,” she said.

The annual State of the County event is the county’s largest networking event geared toward fostering relationships among the county’s civic, business and educational leaders.

In 2010, the Countywide Vision, a 20-year strategy plan to increase the quality of life and economic climate in the county through collaborative efforts, was implemented.

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