Owensboro is situated in Western Kentucky on the southern border of the Ohio River. The city was discovered as Yellow Banks in 1797 by frontiersman William Smothers, for whom Owensboro named the famous riverfront park. In 1817, Yellow Banks was officially established as Owensboro. Now, the metropolitan area homes 116,800 residents and two private colleges, Brescia University and Kentucky Wesleyan College, and a public community college, Owensboro Community and Technical College. Outside of academia, Owensboro epitomizes Kentucky culture. Considering itself the "BBQ Capital of the World," the city's International BBQ Festival and competition brings thousands of enthusiasts each May. In addition, the city hosts the International Bluegrass Museum, Western Kentucky Botanical Garden, Big O Music Fest, and "Friday After 5," an outdoor summer concert series.
Living in Owensboro is about 13 percent cheaper than the national average cost of living as reported by Forbes. Utilities, transportation, groceries, and health costs all fall below the national average. Housing, especially, proves much cheaper with a value of 60 compared to the national average of 100. The median household income is $45,519, and per capita income was just under $21,000 in 2012. The average household income increased 1.1 percent in 2013. The median cost of a household last year was $103,700, demonstrating a 10.2 percent positive change in home values.
Owensboro Job Opportunities
Owensboro, KY jobs mark the city as Kentucky's center for medical, industrial and retail growth. With 3,300 in medical staff, Owensboro Medical Health Center Hospital is the number one employer of jobs in Owensboro. The second largest industry is education, though surprisingly the majority of Owensboro jobs are found in the public school primary and secondary systems. Daviess County Public schools and Owensboro Public Schools employ 1,775 and 778, respectively. U.S. Bank Home Mortgage, a mortgage processing company, is another large-scale employer with 1,261 contracted workers.
Other major employers round out the jobs in Owensboro, KY, such as Specialty Food Groups, Wal-Mart, Audubon Area Community Services, Inc.'s headquarters, Owensboro Community and Technical Colleges and Toyotetsu Mid-America, an automotive parts company. However, with the largest Kentucky city less than a hundred miles away, search Louisville jobs or other close cities for additional openings.
Owensboro Employment Trends
As of August 2014, Owensboro had an unemployment rate of 5.5 percent, drastically lower than Kentucky's 7.1 percent rate and below the national average of 6.1 percent. Owensboro jobs grew at a rate of 0.1 percent in 2013, but projections place job growth at a 1.8 percent rate for this year.
Forbes ranks Owensboro 25th for job growth and 82nd overall in the list of best U.S. cities for business and careers. With a long manufacturing history, starting with the standard-setting Owensboro Wagon Company, healthcare, education, construction andOwensboro's business jobs, strongly contribute to the "All-American City.