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Perspective | First in Future: Chairman of the Centralina Workforce Board, Reinaldo Panico Peres

It’s Charlotte week! In honor of the Institute for Emerging Issues’ October 15 ReCONNECT to Economic Opportunity Forum in Charlotte, the First in Future podcast takes a week-long sit-down with some of the Queen City’s thought leaders. Listen in every day this week for a thought-provoking conversation on the future of economic opportunity in North Carolina.


As you look around Charlotte, one of the things you’ll notice is how diverse it is. Mecklenburg County is diverse racially, with 51% of its citizens nonwhite. It’s diverse geographically — 57% of its residents were born outside of the state of North Carolina. And 1 in 7 of its residents was born outside of the U.S. Today’s First in Future guest Reinaldo Panico Peres, chair of the Centralina Workforce Board, was born in Brazil and moved to the Charlotte region when he relocated a Brazilian company there. 

These days, he assists other international firms locating to the Charlotte region, and he is on a mission to get the Charlotte region workforce to give up its old habits and reinvent itself.

Leslie Boney

Leslie Boney is the director of NC State University’s Institute for Emerging Issues.