As our nation recovers from one of the worst recessions in recent history, there is a tendency to keep thinking of our economy as a glass that is half empty. When we hear about job losses or see international companies consolidating operations elsewhere, it is easy to fall into that mindset.

But in Vermont, there’s another story.

We are fortunate to have avoided the crippling mortgage crisis and high unemployment that afflicted so many states. We have worked tirelessly to strengthen Vermont’s economy by diversifying and insulating ourselves from downturns that might hit any single sector.

We have made significant progress.

Since January 2011, when Governor Shumlin took office, we have added more than 11,000 new jobs statewide, including 3,000 in manufacturing, professional services, science and technology. Our farm economy, tourism, and value-added agricultural products sectors have also experienced impressive growth. Our renewable energy firms created more than 1,000 new jobs last year alone, and Vermont now ranks number one in the nation for solar jobs per capita.

It has been a long, slow recovery from the recession, and companies around the world continue to feel the impacts. But many of Vermont’s homegrown businesses are flourishing. In the past 18 months, we have seen multi-million dollar deals struck by Green Mountain Coffee Roasters,