CLEVELAND, Tenn. - About two dozen people were waiting at the door Thursday morning when a jobs fair opened at the Cleveland Family YMCA.
The fair, similar to others held recently in Chattanooga, Dayton and Athens, Tenn., was organized by the Cleveland/Bradley Chamber of Commerce, the Southeast Tennessee Development District and the YMCA.
Lisa Pickel, the Chamber's director of existing industry programs, said 47 vendors from companies throughout Southeast Tennessee took part in the fair. From manufacturing to health care and law enforcement to financial services, company representatives explained their employment needs to hundreds of job seekers, she said.
"I have two goals," Pickel said. "First, of course, is to help people find work. And we want our employers to feel that this is beneficial to them."
Christi Brown of Capital Financial Group said her company, located in Chattanooga off Shallowford Road, has expanded.
"So we have empty space and are looking for people," she said. "[The fair] is well attended, and I have spoken to some qualified candidates."
Major industries, along with midsized companies and small businesses, were represented on the exhibit hall floor.
Pam Wells and Jennifer Cross-Galivan from Cleveland Tubing Co. said they met prospective employees who were unemployed or underemployed, as well as people seeking better jobs.
"We do everything online," Cross-Galivan said. "So we direct them to our website. All of our job information is posted there."