Apple CEO Tim Cook recently spoke about making the Mac and other products in America. Those comments inspired a new campaign and online petition asking Apple to manufacture in Illinois.
It makes sense. Cook said a major barrier is the lack of American expertise in electronics manufacturing since most products are made overseas. Illinois houses the technology infrastructure to make it happen.
The University of Illinois has a long history of advanced computer development, including being the birthplace of the internet browser (not to mention HAL 9000). Now, the University is partnering for development of a Chicago technology research center designed to keep scientists, engineers and other tech innovators in Illinois.
Illinois has excellent transportation infrastructure and manufacturing facilities ideal for Apple, plus eight technology parks with incentives for development. They can even host a parade float for the Murphysboro Apple Festival. It's a natural fit.
State Representative La Shawn Ford pledged to work with the Small Business Empowerment and Workforce Development Committee to advance the effort.
Illinois can't look to the past for jobs. This is the future of economic development for Chicago and the region.
You can Like the facebook page here, and sign the online petition at change.org.