They say it takes a village to raise a child. In our case, it takes collaboration between committed partners to ensure our industries have the resources they need to thrive in Albany-Dougherty County. Our community consistently assesses its business climate in order to facilitate business investment.

Business Growth

Georgia Department of Economic Development

The Georgia Department of Economic Development markets Georgia to the world by encouraging business investment and trade, attracting tourists to Georgia and promoting the state as a go-to location for film, music, digital entertainment and the arts. The department works with local communities to advance economic development.

Georgia Centers of Innovation

Georgia’s Centers of Innovation provides unique, technology-oriented support to businesses and start-ups in the areas of aerospace, agribusiness, energy, life sciences, logistics and advanced manufacturing. Each of the six centers provides direct access to university and technical college applied research, commercialization resources, technology connections, matching grant funds, potential investor networks and key government agencies. Client companies are connected with industry-specific experts who are on the leading edge of technology and new ideas. A common goal across all of the centers is to cut red tape, streamline connections and seek technology solutions to industry-led challenges; within this framework the centers create a pro-growth, innovative business environment for industries critical to Georgia’s expansion.

University of Georgia Small Business Development Center

The University of Georgia’s Small Business Development Center Network provides low-cost training and free consulting services, including assistance with business plan development, market analysis and marketing strategies, financial analysis, compliance and legal issues and preparation of loan submissions for individuals who want to start their own businesses or expand an existing one. The SBDC in Albany provides assistance to businesses throughout Southwest Georgia.

Georgia Institute of Technology Innovation Enterprise Institute

The Georgia Institute of Technology Innovation Enterprise Institute, also knows as EI², is the largest and most comprehensive university-based program of business and economic development assistance in the United States. The institute’s overall goal is to help enterprises of all types and sizes use science, technology and innovation to improve their competitiveness – and bottom lines.

The institute’s ATDC program helps Georgia entrepreneurs launch and build successful technology companies. The Enterprise Innovation Institute continues to serve Georgia manufacturers with integrated programs aimed at helping these companies become more competitive through the application of lean principles, energy management, growth techniques and related assistance. The institute also supports technology partnerships and helps connect companies to research and development, continuing education and other resources at Georgia Tech.

The EI² office in Albany provides assistance to businesses throughout Southwest Georgia.

City of Albany Department of Community and Economic Development

Albany is an entitlement community responsible for administering the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) and Housing Investment Partnership Program programs funded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development within its strategic planning areas of Enterprise Community, the South Albany Redevelopment Area and the East Albany Urban Redevelopment Area. These strategic planning areas serve as jurisdictions where the federally-funded activities are undertaken. As an economic development tool, the department also makes available deferred and revolving loans to qualified industries.

Business Climate & Infrastructure

Albany Area Chamber of Commerce

The Albany Area Chamber of Commerce has been serving the Albany area for more than 100 years. The Albany Area Chamber of Commerce is committed to promoting and stimulating the economic well being of its membership through proactive and progressive programs and services and strategic alliances while representing its members’ commercial, industrial and professional interests in major issues of economic and public policy.

Southwest Georgia Regional Commission

The Southwest Georgia Regional Commission is a regional planning agency serving 14 counties and 44 cities in Southwest Georgia. The commission provides a variety of services to governments throughout the region, including the development and review of zoning and subdivision regulations; land use planning; environmental planning; economic development; GIS and mapping services; grant writing and administration; as well as human services, transportation and historic preservation.

Georgia Department of Labor

The Georgia Department of Labor provides a wide range of services to job seekers and employers, including administration of Georgia’s unemployment insurance, employment service, and vocational rehabilitation programs; provision of work force information to the public and private sectors; inspection of boilers, pressure vessels, amusement park and carnival rides; and oversight of child labor issues. The Georgia Department of Labor also leads the state’s implementation of the Workforce Investment Act.

Georgia Department of Community Affairs

The Georgia Department of Community Affairs operates a host of state and federal grant programs; serves as the state’s lead agency in housing finance and development; promulgates building codes to be adopted by local governments; provides comprehensive planning, technical and research assistance to local governments; and serves as the lead agency for the state’s solid waste reduction efforts.

Albany Water, Gas & Light Commission

The Albany Water, Gas & Light Commission is a municipally-owned and operated utility system furnishing water, gas and electricity to its broad–based customers. Albany WG&L, founded in 1892 as the Albany Water Works, is the largest municipal user in Georgia. Along with water, gas and electricity, WG&L lays fiber-optics cables to enhance the community’s telecommunications infrastructure.

Electric Cities of Georgia

Electric Cities of Georgia provides strategic and technical services to communities with utility operations. Services are designed to maximize the performance of communities’ utilities and, to a greater extent, create successful communities with economic prosperity and opportunity. ECG provides services in operations, sales and marketing, business analysis, organizational development and economic development.

Georgia EMC

Georgia Electric Membership Corp. is the statewide trade association that serves, among others, Georgia’s 42 electric membership corporations. Georgia EMC assists membership corporations to pool their resources to gain strength and efficiency on common issues. Georgia EMC works to promote the EMCs of Georgia by providing member-focused leadership and a unified voice through advocacy, education and communication. The 501(c)(3) organization also provides economic development services.

Georgia Power

Georgia Power is an investor-owned, tax-paying utility that serves 2.35 million customers in all but four of Georgia’s 159 counties. The largest of four electric utilities that make up Southern Co., Georgia Power has been providing electricity to Georgia for more than a century at rates well below the national average. Georgia Power provides a broad range of economic development assistance and services to Georgia communities.

Norfolk Southern

Norfolk Southern Corporation is one of the nation’s premier transportation companies. Its Norfolk Southern Railway subsidiary operates approximately 20,000 route miles in 22 states and the District of Columbia, serves every major container port in the eastern United States, and provides efficient connections to other rail carriers. Norfolk Southern operates the most extensive intermodal network in the East and is a major transporter of coal and industrial products.


OmniTRAX offers a collection of solutions to transportation problems. As one of North America’s largest private railroad and transportation management companies, OmniTRAX’s capabilities range from providing services to railroads, ports, intermodal and industrial switching operations. OmniTRAX also has the unique capability of offering specialized industrial development and real estate solutions – both on and off the rail network managed by OmniTRAX. It is the synergy between the business groups that makes OmniTRAX unique and helps it deliver the most value.


The telecommunications infrastructure in Albany-Dougherty County provides the full array of products and services that AT&T Georgia has to offer. This includes all data and broadband services. The Albany wire center is on an even par with any city in Georgia and boasts a telecommunications and data network equal to any in the nation. A variety of fiber-fed facilities provide applications to customers in a variety of disciplines including small, medium and large business, education, manufacturing and distribution, service industries, medicine and health care.

Education & Work Force Development

Albany State University

Founded in 1903 by Joseph Winthrop Holley as the Albany Bible and Manual Training Institution, Albany State University has grown into a four-year school offering baccalaureate and graduate studies for its more than 4,000 students. The college offers students the full array of extracurricular activities – from fine arts to band to sports. The university is located on 231 acres in the central Albany area.

Albany Technical College

Albany Technical College, a public post-secondary institution of the Technical College System of Georgia, provides technical education and training support for the evolving work force development needs of Southwest Georgia. The college graduates more students than any other technical college in the Georgia and has a 98 percent placement rate. Albany Technical College works closely with local industry to ensure the college’s programs of study meet work force training needs.

Darton College

Darton College is located on 180 acres and boasts more than 30 campus organizations and service clubs, 11 nationally-regarded athletic programs as well as programs and facilities in art, dance, theatre and music. Although a two-year school, Darton was just approved to offer four-year studies in allied health.

In addition to many other amenities and facilities on campus (such as a theater, arena, track and competitive swimming pool), in 2009 the college added a state-of-the-art student center complete with a bowling alley, racquetball courts, an indoor climbing wall and other features. In August 2011, the college unveiled its latest dormitory, bringing total campus housing to 410. Another dorm is already in the works.

Dougherty County School System

The Dougherty County School Systems educates nearly 16,000 K-12 students annually. The system boasts progressive curriculums that include Centers of Excellence in career paths, Albany Early College at Albany State University and the International Baccalaureate Program. The system is accredited by the Southern Association of Schools and Colleges as well as by the Georgia Accrediting Commission.

Turner Job Corps

Job Corps is a no-cost education and career technical training program administered by the U.S. Department of Labor that helps young people ages 16 through 24 improve the quality of their lives through vocational and academic training. Turner Job Corps Center supports the program mission of teaching eligible young people the skills they need to become employable and independent and placing them in meaningful jobs or further education.