Spotlight on Covington & Butler Counties

Downtown Greenville is just 40 miles south of Montgomery.

Photo courtesy of the Greenville Area Chamber of Commerce

Covington and Butler counties, located in southeast Alabama, are close to military bases, the capital city of Montgomery, water, rail, interstate and two automotive manufacturing plants. Rich in history and natural resources, the cities and towns work diligently to improve quality of life and attract visitors.

In Covington County, where Andalusia is the county seat, county and city officials actively support schools and healthcare facilities. The largest employer in the county, Shaw Industries, which makes carpet fibers, just announced a major expansion. Other strong sectors in this county are aviation and aerospace, automotive suppliers, health care and higher education.

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In Butler County, where Greenville is the county seat, the city of Greenville recently purchased L.V. Stabler Memorial Hospital for $2.8 million and brought in UAB expertise. The hospital is now part of the UAB Health System.

“Mayor (Dexter) McLendon and the city council made the right decision to take over the ownership of the hospital, and to bring in UAB, with all its resources, ” says Donny Rentfro, Stabler CEO. The hospital, a Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Alabama Tier 1 facility, employs more than 200 and is a major employer in the area.

Butler County’s largest sector is automotive suppliers. In that sector, the largest overall employer, Hwashin America Corp., has announced an expansion. Other active sectors include lumber and wood products, health care and higher education.

Both counties are active in workforce development. Lurleen B. Wallace Community College and K-12 school systems provide workforce development for high school students and adults and work with industry to provide retraining programs as needed.

Lori Chandler Pruitt is a freelance writer for Business Alabama. She lives in Birmingham.

Text by Lori Chandler Pruitt

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