The Smallest Becomes the Largest!

Lake Cascade

Riddle me this: How can the Smallest America’s Best Community Quarter Finalist be its’ Largest?

By Richard Jayo

Seems like a reasonable question and one that deserves a logical answer. And so here it is: a community in the Southern Idaho Frontier LAM has prevailed and is moving onto the quarter finals in the America’s Best Communities Contest. Valley County/Meadows Valley is just that community. Challenge for them was that in order to meet the contest criteria the communities needed to have a population base of at least 9,500. That required population aggregation and collaboration. That was not a problem for Valley County; it just took all the cities in the county, Cascade, Donnelly and McCall plus another contiguous community in Adams County known as Meadows Valley to collaborate to get to that number.

So here is what occurred. Valley County, with a population of just over 9,600, partnered with nearby Meadows Valley to enter the contest. All told, the collective population of the economic impact area in question is 11,100 making it the smallest community to prevail at the quarter finalist level for the ABC contest. But what the area is lacking in population density it easily makes up in terms or geography covered. You see, this economic impact area in question is 4,104 square miles, easily making it the largest geography in the competition. It is, in fact, three and one-half times larger than the entire State of Rhode Island or one and one-half times larger than Delaware, making the smallest community from a population perspective the largest territory in the contest. And that, my friends, is how the smallest community can be the largest.

To show its enthusiasm, the team, sponsored by the McCall Area Chamber of Commerce and Visitors Bureau, put together a video montage to show their appreciation. Folks from all realms of this extended community reached out to the sponsors with a link they wanted to share with you. So follow the link below and if you have not visited the area take a moment and do so. Oh, and stay tuned — this determined contestant will not go away without a fight! See you in the Semis!!


Clearlink to Mentor Valley County / Meadows Valley

CLEARLINK.png.pagespeed.ic.TS-j5JTIzKCLEARLINK to Mentor Valley County/Meadows Valley, Idaho with America’s Best Communities

Adopt-A-Community Program

$10 million America’s Best Communities competition — sponsored by Frontier Communications, DISH Network, The Weather Channel and CoBank — aims to spark innovation and growth in small towns

CASCADE, ID, AND SALT LAKE CITY, UT, June X, 2015 Across the country, 50 communities are celebrating their victories in the first round of the America’s Best Communities competition, a $10 million initiative to stimulate economic revitalization in small towns and cities. Salt Lake City, Utah based CLEARLINK has adopted one of those communities, Valley County/Meadows Valley, Idaho. CLEARLINK will serve as a strategic advisor to help them develop a comprehensive strategy to accelerate the revival of their local economy and improve quality of life.

Valley County/Meadows Valley is home to over 11,000 people, and will be awarded $35,000 in prize money from the America’s Best Communities competition to build and implement a Community Revitalization Plan. CLEARLINK contributed an additional $15,000 to bring the community’s total winnings to $50,000. In the months ahead, CLEARLINK will forge partnerships with local leaders in Valley County/Meadows Valley, providing guidance and support as they build plans to strengthen their community.

The sponsors of the America’s Best Communities competition — Frontier Communications, DISH Network, The Weather Channel and CoBankrecently announced the winning communities that have advanced into the quarterfinals of this innovative campaign, which aims to jumpstart economic development and investment in rural America. The 50 quarterfinalist communities will now have five more months to shape and refine their revitalization plans for the chance to win up to an additional $3 million to bring their ideas to life.

By investing in America’s small towns and rural communities, we’ll make our entire nation stronger and accelerate our economic recovery,” said Jesse Himsworth, Vice President of Strategic Accounts at CLEARLINK. We are honored to support the America’s Best Communities competition, and eager to partner with the hardworking men and women surrounding Valley County/Meadows Valley, Idaho as they continue to move their community forward.

“As the largest telecommunications company focused on rural America, we recognized the economic impact that new, strategic investments often have on the revitalization of small towns and rural cities,” Frontier Communications General Manager Richard Jayo said. We launched America’s Best Communities to inspire innovation and foster new growth in America’s emerging markets, our rural communities, and we could not accomplish this vision without the support of partners like CLEARLINK.

We thank them for their leadership and their willingness to join us in this pursuit of a more vibrant, resilient economy across rural America, starting in their adopted community.”

America’s Best Communities is a multi-stage, three-year competition that will provide $4 million in seed money and other support to assist communities as they develop new economic growth strategies. The top three communities will receive a total of $6 million in prize money.

The 50 quarterfinalist communities have until November to complete their comprehensive Community Revitalization Plans to be considered for additional investment. In early 2016, 15 semifinalists will be selected to attend the America’s Best Communities summit to present their strategies, with eight finalists then awarded $100,000 to continue implementation of their plans.

In April 2017, America’s Best Communities will name its three competition winners — those with the most innovative proposals being effectively implemented. The winning community will be awarded $3 million, with $2 million for second place and $1 million for third.

For more on America’s Best Communities and its Adopt-a-Community Program, visit


CLEARLINK partners with the world’s leading brands to increase their reach, drive and fulfill valuable transactions, and deepen insight into consumer behavior. CLEARLINK has delivered millions of customers to its brand partners over the past twelve years through its customized marketing, sales and analytics platform. CLEARLINK, headquartered in Salt Lake City, Utah and established in 2003, employs over 1,200 local sales, technology and marketing professionals. For an opportunity to join the growing CLEARLINK family, visit


Frontier Communications Corporation (NASDAQ: FTR) offers broadband, voice, video, wireless Internet data access, data security solutions, bundled offerings, specialized bundles for residential customers, small businesses and home offices and advanced communications for medium and large businesses in 28 states. Frontier’s approximately 17,800 employees are based entirely in the United States. More information is available at


Frontier: Emily Tantare,, 503-629-2412

CLEARLINK: Tarah Reeves,, 801-990-3623

Valley County/Meadows Valley: Sherry Maupin,, 208-630-2025


What’s in a Name?

As part of creating a regional identity, the America’s Best Communities Valley County / Meadows Valley Committee recently sponsored a naming contest. The name selected will be used throughout the America’s Best Communities competition, and if it catches on, might eventually be used as a defining aspect of our region, although the intent is not to officially adopt the name.

Many creative entries were submitted, and the decision was difficult. The name chosen needed to be inclusive and representative of all communities. In the end, a name and a tagline were selected that were representative of the area in terms of geography and ideals:

The West Central Mountains

Idaho’s Adventure Corridor

Having a regional name is an important step toward creating cohesiveness between our neighboring communities. Although we each have unique goals and characteristics, we have become increasingly aware of just how interdependent we are. What affects one community eventually affects us all. United, The West Central Mountains will thrive!