Ron Bunch, CEcD is the President and CEO of the Bowling Green Area Chamber of Commerce, a Five-Star Accredited Chamber of Commerce that has been serving the Bowling Green, Warren County area for more than 75 years. The organization boasts a strong partnership base with more than 1,200 Chamber Partners and was recognized in 2009 as the American Chamber of Commerce Executives Chamber of the Year in the United States.
As the driving force for the business community in Bowling Green, Warren County, the Chamber also serves as the lead economic development organization for the region and is responsible for the South Central Kentucky Regional Economic Development Partnership. Bunch leads business development, advocacy, expansion and attraction initiatives for the Bowling Green Area Economic Development Authority (BGAEDA), the Kentucky Intermodal Transportation Authority (ITA), South Central Kentucky Regional Development Authority (RDA), and the Chamber Foundation.
With over 20 years of professional economic development experience, Bunch is a Certified Economic Developer (CEcD) and has led successful local and regional economic development efforts in four states.
Since joining the Chamber in January 2011, Bunch has been appointed to five statewide organizations’ Board of Directors: the Kentucky Association for Economic Development, the Kentucky Chamber of Commerce, the Japan-America Society of Kentucky, the Indo-Kentucky Chamber of Commerce, and the World Trade Center Kentucky. He is also a member of the Board of Directors for the Western Kentucky University Research Foundation, a member of the Barren River Development Council, a member of the WKU Ogden College of Science and Engineering Advisory Council, a member of the Business Executive Advisory Council for the WKU Gordon Ford College of Business.
Under Bunch’s leadership, Bowling Green and Warren County have been recognized with national accolades in multiple publications, including SmartMoney, Forbes and Site Selection. Warren County was among the first counties across the Commonwealth to be named a Work Ready Community by the Kentucky Workforce Investment Board (KWIB) in 2012.
South Central Kentucky experienced outstanding success in 2015. Most recently receiving a notable ranking by Site Selection magazine – second on their ‘Top 10 Metro Areas for New and Expanded Facilities’ among metropolitan areas with populations less than 200,000 category – and contributing to Kentucky’s second consecutive Governor’s Cup win for attracting the most industry activity per capita in 2015. This is the third year in a row Bowling Green has found its self on Site Selection’s ‘Top 10’ list. As a record setting year for South Central Kentucky, 2015 included $943.7 million in capital investment and 1,040 new jobs. Warren County boasts the second, third and tenth largest economic development projects in Kentucky for 2015.
Additionally, Bunch’s leadership played a significant role in two of the three South Central Kentucky projects that contributed to Kentucky’s 2012 Silver Shovel Award by Area Development magazine. Bunch was also a part of landing Bilstein North America in 2013, the largest capital investment by a new firm in the Commonwealth in 2013. In 2014, Quiver Ventures (Constellium-UACJ) announced $155 million and 80 new jobs in Bowling Green effectively securing their place as the second largest attraction project in the Commonwealth contributing to Kentucky’s 2015 Silver Shovel Award.
With Bunch at the helm, the Bowling Green Area Chamber of Commerce has been integral in securing $1.7 billion in capital investment and the creation of 4,020 new jobs since 2011 for South Central Kentucky.
Prior to Bowling Green, Bunch was executive director of the Business Development Board of Martin County (BDBMC) in Florida, during which time Florida Governor Charlie Crist appointed Bunch to serve on the Treasure Coast Regional Planning Council Board to represent Enterprise Florida, the state’s official economic development agency. Before assuming his responsibilities in Florida, Bunch was the economic development director for the City of Danville, VA. During his time in this role, the City announced more than 6,100 direct new jobs and a capital investment of more than $569 million.
A 1990 graduate of the United States Military Academy at West Point, Bunch holds a Bachelor of Science degree in economics with a focus in general engineering, and is the proud father of Haley and Catherine.