Ardath Prendergast/Special to the Chronicle
In 1994, a forward-thinking Chamber of Commerce Leadership Citrus class came up with a project using their acquired leadership skills to look 25 years into the future of Citrus County.
They developed a strategy to guide the community to a path of planning rather than happenstance. Named “Citrus 20/20: Focus Today for a Clear Vision of Tomorrow,” they welcomed interested community members to participate and take ownership in helping to direct that vision.
For the next two decades, the vision and aspirations that developed out of that plan were treated almost like a bible by the County Commissioners and other leaders, guiding their actions on countless issues.
In 2010, 15 years into the vision, the community came together again to review the progress to date, and fine tune the remaining 10 years.
As we now move into that year that seemed so distant in 1995, Janice Warren, one of the original Citrus 20/20 steering committee members, took the initiative to revive the plan with the idea of moving it forward to 2030.
Recently, the statewide Florida Chamber released its Florida 2030 plan, so it seemed natural to also look just 10 years out, especially as the rapid speed of technology is outstripping what may seem preposterous and impossible today.
Teaming up with the Citrus County Chamber, a new steering committee of some of the original Citrus 20/20 members along with a fresh infusion of young members and future leaders is once more looking to the future.
Back in 1995, Citrus 20/20 identified that what is cherished most in Citrus County is the county’s unique and irreplaceable wealth of nature resources, our treasured education system, our small-town atmosphere and our talented people resources.
While the look of our community may have changed since this process first began in 1995, the things we treasure remain the same. We can look back to Citrus 20/20 to see how it served to guide us to the present, as we continue to move ahead to the year 2030 with a vision and action plan shaped by today’s visionaries dedicated to creating our destiny by design, not by chance.
To contribute your assessment of Citrus County’s positioning for the future, please visit the Citrus 2030 website at www.citrus2030.org and click on SURVEY. If you would like to be a participant in the Citrus 2030 Vision Check on October 5 at the College of Central Florida Citrus Campus Conference Center in Lecanto, please complete Question No. 20 of the survey.
Ardath Prendergast is the Vice President of Operations/Business Retention & Expansion for the Citrus County Chamber of Commerce. A member of the Citrus 2030 Steering Committee, she co-chairs the Arts and Culture Aspiration Subcommittee.