Branding survey responses sought

JOHNSTOWN – The Fulton County Board of Supervisors, as well as the general public, was urged Monday to participate in a survey to assist a regional branding project to develop a marketing brand and logo.

County Planning Director James Mraz told supervisors at the County Office Building his department continues working with North Star Destination Strategies of Nashville, Tenn., on the effort.

“To date, we have spent a significant amount of time with North Star, sending them a variety of information,” Mraz said.

The Fulton County Board of Supervisors in October authorized a contract between the county and the Montgomery County Industrial Development Agency to hire North Star Destination Strategies of Nashville to develop a brand for the two counties.

The “community blueprint” is being developed by the firm for economic development marketing purposes at a total cost of $46,000. The direct cost to Fulton County is $13,000. National Grid is paying $23,000 of the cost. The Fulton County Center for Regional Growth is contributing $10,000 through proceeds of its 2013 marketing contract with Fulton County.

The Montgomery County IDA first hired North Star to conduct a branding project for its county in June, but the IDA agreed to amend that contract to expand its scope of work to a project for both counties.

Mraz told Fulton County supervisors that North Star wants organizations, businesses, community and elected leaders, and the public to provide input for the firm to use in development of the logo. He said a “vision survey” must be completed.

“It is very important to our office and North Star to have this thing done,” Mraz said.

He said the desire is to have at least 150 “responses” from the community.

To complete the survey, Mraz said the public can go to: The survey must be filled out and submitted online by Jan. 31. Those who don’t have Internet access, or prefer filling out a paper copy of the survey, can contact Mraz at 736-5660; or, and a copy will be mailed. All surveys must be submitted by Jan. 31.

Mraz said the Fulton County vision survey takes about 15 minutes to fill out. The survey asks questions about general perceptions of the county, community attributes, business attributes, economic growth goals, general perception of the Fulton-Montgomery region and demographic information.

International site selector Michael Mullis, in his visit to the area in September, recommended the two counties do a “branding exercise” to develop an identifiable name and logo for the region. Mullis said that will make the region more recognizable.

Mraz said representatives of North Star will be visiting local businesses. He said the representatives also will discuss the branding project at the next meeting of the board’s Economic Development-Environment Committee on Jan. 28 at the County Office Building.

Michael Anich covers Johnstown and Fulton County news. He can be reached at