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Taking care of customers and employees, hard work, honesty and integrity are the values Jack Taylor held dear when he launched Enterprise Rent-A-Car back in 1957. These same values attracted Pam Nicholson to the company 24 years ago as a management trainee and played a major role in her rise to executive vice president and chief operating officer of the company.

She firmly believes that the values and work ethic advanced to this day by Jack Taylor and Enterprise Chairman and CEO Andy Taylor have propelled the company into the global business spotlight. That is an understatement—as the largest rental car company in North America, Enterprise has 602,000 rental cars in service. With 5,400 offices in the U.S. and more than 600 offices in Canada, the United Kingdom, Germany and Ireland, it employs 57,000 people.

In addition, Enterprise encourages its employees to become involved in the community, not only with their time and talents, but to seek funds from Enterprise’s foundation if they’re involved in a particular charity. Nicholson herself serves on the board of Energizer Holdings Inc. and the Missouri Humane Society.

Also in this month’s Commerce, Bill Beggs Jr. has penned a fascinating piece about homeschooling. As Beggs reports, homeschooling is hard work—for both teacher and student. Developing a curriculum isn’t “making it up as you go along.” There must be 1,000 hours of instruction in a given academic year, with certain percentages devoted to science, math, social studies and language arts. Although there is no mandated format, one must be able to demonstrate that the
student is making progress.

This Commerce article focuses on resources available throughout the St. Louis region for parents who want to home school their children.

In another Commerce piece, this month Brian Hook examines one key segment of the St. Louis region’s transportation that sometimes doesn’t get enough attention—our waterway system.

Millions of tons of commodities move through the Port of Metropolitan St. Louis each year. The latest figures by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers put the total at 32.4 million tons of products that moved through the port during 2004; that makes the St. Louis port the third largest inland river port by tonnage in the country. Huntington, West Virginia is first with 81 million tons. Pittsburgh is second, with 52 million tons.

Including all the ports across the country, the St. Louis port is the 21st largest. St. Louis is ahead of such deep-water ports as Portland, Seattle, Chicago, Baltimore and Boston. As Nick Nichols, operations manager at the City of St. Louis Port Authority notes, St. Louis is a “huge distribution center” when it comes to bulk commodities.

We hope you enjoy this issue of St. Louis Commerce. As always, we welcome your feedback and invite your suggestions for future story ideas.

President and Chief Executive Officer
St. Louis Regional Chamber and Growth Association




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