New Jersey is serious about generating jobs, and so are the state’s business leaders. Sixteen of the state’s top firms have signed on for the Choose New Jersey initiative – each pledging $450,000 for a three-year period – to promote the Garden State as an excellent place to do business. Choose New Jersey, an independent and privately funded nonprofit organization, is a component of the Partnership for Action program created by the Christie-Guadagno administration. The other two components in this aggressive economic development effort are the Business Action Center and the New Jersey Economic Development Authority. "Our goal is simple – to strategically position the state so business will … choose New Jersey,” says Tracye McDaniel, CEO of Choose New Jersey. “I look forward to working with our key partners, the Business Action Center and the Economic Development Authority to spur economic growth throughout our entire state.” Choose New Jersey will market the state to attract and retain the industries that create jobs. The group of business leaders will also advise the state regarding policies that make New Jersey more enticing to business investment. “Through Choose New Jersey, we believe there is a role for business to play and a significant opportunity to have a positive impact on the state's economy, as well as the overall quality of life in New Jersey. We are proud to do our part to support these critical efforts,” says Dennis Bone, president of Verizon New Jersey and chairman of Choose New Jersey. Other firms participating in the initiative include NJ American Water Co., Wakefern Food Co., Bank of America Merrill Lynch, New Jersey Resources, NJM Insurance Group, South Jersey Gas, Bethany Baptist Church, Celgene Corp., United Water, PSEG, Atlantic City Electric, Horizon Blue Cross/Shield of NJ, Laborers International Union of North America, Novartis Pharmaceutical Corp. and Prudential Financial Inc.