LITTLE ROCK (KTHV) - THV 11 is taking a closer look at the man behind a project to bring more than 500 new jobs to Arkansas.
John Correnti is CEO of Big River Steel, LLC. He and state leaders unveiled plans Tuesday to build a steel plant in Osceola. Correnti is actually an Arkansas native, and this is not first rodeo bringing a steel mill to the Natural State.
John Correnti received a warm Arkansas welcome Tuesday at the Capital, announcing his latest venture for the state.
"It's steel mill heaven," Correnti said.
He's excited about his steel mill project in Osceola but this isn't his first time working in the area. As a former executive with steel company Nucor in the 1990's, Correnti helped build two other plants in Mississippi County. A 1992 report from U.S. News and World Report said former President Bill Clinton played a key role in getting those up and running.
Correnti's more recent time in Arkansas hasn't come without some failure. Our partners at Arkansas Business report that in 2005, Correnti tried to build a $700 million dollar steel plant here but left because the state of Mississippi offered a better package of grants and loans. At the time, Correnti was critical of Arkansas' economic development efforts but not anymore.
"They are the best economic development team that I've ever had," Correnti said.
The Blytheville native said he's spent more than 20 years of his life living in Arkansas and he could be back if this latest venture moved ahead.
Correnti said other draws for his latest project are location, strong electricity resources and a good workforce.
You can read more on his past from this report from our news partner, Arkansas Business.