Month: January 2018

Radius Indiana Launches Women In Economic Development Leadership Initiative

BEDFORD, Ind. (Jan. 26, 2017) – Radius Indiana kicked off its new Women In Economic Development Leadership Initiative Jan. 24 at the West Baden Hotel. This is the first-ever course of its kind for the region, and the state, and is designed to promote professional development for women.

The course will focus on a broad range of topics, including business attraction, retention and expansion, entrepreneurship, quality of life initiatives, networking, and international business etiquette. The initiative will span 2018 and encourage an open dialogue among participants to share successes, challenges and best practices.

This program adds to the portfolio of educational economic development initiatives that Radius currently leads, like the Economic Development for Community Leadership Program that will be held for the second time this year in March.

“Radius Indiana has undertaken a number of initiatives to strengthen the culture and practice of economic development in Southern Indiana. We saw that there were a number of new people who have come on the economic development scene in a relatively short period of time all in a compact area, and we felt this course could help them all and their communities,” said Radius Indiana President and CEO Jeff Quyle. “We opened up the program to our region and surrounding counties and have nearly a dozen participants from eight counties representing local economic development, the utility sector, community development, chambers of commerce, marketing and telecommunications.”

Quyle selected Chelsey Manns, president of Manns Consulting, LLC to facilitate the course. Manns is a veteran in economic development and helps communities develop and execute project plans for business growth, quality of life initiatives and community development. Manns formerly served as the Executive Director of Morgan County Economic Development Corporation, and as business development director for Banning Engineering, a central Indiana-based civil engineering and surveying firm. She began her career as a project manager with the Indy Partnership.

“I commend the Radius Indiana team for spearheading this new program,” said Manns. “I am excited for the opportunity to be involved and look forward to sharing my experiences and helping to strengthen the foundation of economic development professionals in the area.”

Manns and Quyle both hope that this initiative will leave participants with a better sense of the industry, and see this as a chance to serve as a networking opportunity for the region.

Rachel Steckler, director of Communication & Community Development for the City of Huntingburg, who is attending the course, added, “The Women in Economic Development Initiative is a great opportunity for women in this industry to discuss important issues in our region, and share best practices to not only sustain our communities, but to promote and enhance them, as well. I applaud Radius for supporting regional collaboration, and I am grateful for the opportunity to be included with this great group of economic development professionals.”

Radius Indiana and Southwest Indiana Development Council Sign Memorandum of Understanding

BEDFORD, Ind. (Jan. 23, 2018) – Radius Indiana and Southwest Indiana Development Council (SWIDC) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding that will guide growing cooperation between the two organizations.

Radius and SWIDC developed the MOU to promote economic development coordination across their respective regions, which share similar demographics and industry clusters including high concentrations of agriculture and manufacturing.

“This newly formed relationship has the opportunity to bring more business and success to the counties involved,” said Radius Indiana President and CEO Jeff Quyle. “We look forward to working alongside SWIDC and seeing what can be achieved as we expand our regional approach. We are already in the planning stages to co-host a site selector event in Chicago, and have started discussions to include representatives from SWIDC in our international outreach efforts.”

The two groups will identify opportunities to collaborate on outreach, such as joint site selector events, and continuing professional education in topics related to economic development for economic development professionals and elected civic leaders, as well as through other opportunities for mutual support that may arise. In addition, an annual meeting will be held between Radius and SWIDC to facilitate conversations among both regions’ Local Economic Development Organizations.

“Collaboration among stakeholders is key to economic development especially in rural areas. This MOU between Radius and SWIDC is a positive step toward improving the capabilities of all represented counties in bringing economic development to southwest Indiana,” said Alvin Evans, chairman of Southwest Indiana Development Council. “I applaud the leadership of Radius Indiana in reaching out to SWIDC to improve all our efforts.”

As neighboring regional economic development groups, Radius and SWIDC represent multiple counties in Southern and Southwest Indiana and there are three counties, Daviess, Martin, and Dubois that are members of both organizations.

“Dubois Strong is member of both regional groups. The new collaborative partnership agreement opens many opportunities to promote Southern Indiana as a great place to live, work, play and invest,” said Ed Cole, president of Dubois Strong.

Ron Arnold, executive director of Daviess County Economic Development Corporation added, “There are challenges related to workforce and the continued migration of our bright young residents to the urban areas. It will take all of us working together utilizing all our resources to remain competitive.”

ABOUT RADIUS INDIANA: Radius Indiana is a regional economic development partnership representing eight counties in Southern Indiana: Crawford, Daviess, Dubois, Greene, Lawrence, Martin, Orange, and Washington. Formed in 2009, Radius Indiana also serves as a point of contact in Indiana for Naval Support Activity Crane and leads regional collaboration by leveraging the diverse assets of Southwest Central Indiana to drive attraction, retention and expansion of business, thereby increasing employment and investment opportunities and quality of life within the region.

ABOUT SWIDC: Southwest Indiana Development Council is a gateway to economic development resources in Southern and Southwest Indiana. As one of the nation’s most dynamic, growing regions, we welcome new and expanding businesses. The experienced Local Economic Development (LEDO) directors of SWIDC (DaviessDuboisKnoxMartinPerryPikePosey and Spencer counties) have teamed to offer project specific assistance designed to identify, maximize, secure, and apply all available incentives to make Southwest Indiana the most attractive location for business.

Tourism’s Substantial Economic Impact

By: Joe Timbrook

Through the eyes of our visitors to the Radius Region the word “tourism” stirs visions of a favorite family getaway destination, a picturesque hiking adventure through rolling hills or that perfect anniversary dinner at a winery, tucked away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.
But through the fine-tuned lens of an economist, tourism can be seen much differently. It is viewed as a jobs creator, a tax revenue generator and most importantly as a powerful industry that helps drive the economy in our region.
According to a newly released study by market research firm Rockport Analytics, tourism spending in our region continues to grow—increasing by $11.8 million from the previous year.
The study compared tourism data during a two-year period for Crawford, Daviess, Dubois, Greene, Lawrence, Martin, Orange and Washington counties and includes jobs in the industry directly supporting our visitors such as hotel accommodations, as well as in supply chain sectors like transportation.
Let’s take a look at the numbers from Rockport:

$283.4 million in tourism spending, which has a $206.2 million in lasting economic impact to an eight-county, mostly rural region in southern Indiana.  This visitor spending has a significant impact on lodging, transportation, shopping, food & beverage and entertainment businesses in every city and town as evidenced by the following:

  • $73.8M spent on food & beverage or 26.0% of total tourism spending (vs. state 27.9%)
  • $70.2M spent on lodging or 24.8% of total tourism spending (vs. state 16.4%)
  • $67.6M spent on shopping or 23.9% of total tourism spending (vs. state 22.1%)
  • $40.7M spent on transportation or 14.4% of total tourism spending (vs. state 16.4%)
  • $31.1M spent on entertainment & recreation or 11.0% of total tourism spending (vs. state 18.0%)

73% of every dollar spent on tourism in the Radius Region stays in the region. 

5,093 tourism-related jobs in an area with a workforce of 106,375 adults (or 4.8% of the total) providing wages totaling $121.3 million. These payroll dollars support jobs of nearly every type; from stores to gas stations to tourist attractions to hotels and restaurants.  Residents have jobs because visitors spend their money here.  One out of every 20 workers in the region is employed because of the tourism industry.  Studies show that those individuals who start out working in the hospitality industry come to enjoy significant salary growth over time—better than the average regional or national salary.

Tourism spending results in $60.3 million in tax revenue generated region-wide.  Without this federal, state and local impact, each regional household would have to pay an additional $618 annually in taxes.  A portion of the local tax collection is used for the development of tourism initiatives and investments in each county. In addition, revenue collected from tourism supports the equivalent of 3,777 public school students in the region.

Tourism is the #7 industry in the region.  In a state that is heavily invested in manufacturing and technology, tourism ranks higher in the Radius Region as a top industry coming in at #7 compared to the tourism industry for the state of Indiana, which ranks at  #10. Industries that have higher rankings by total employment are manufacturing, government, health and social services, retail/accommodations/food and beverage and construction.
The Radius Region is home to the magnificent French Lick Resort and the West Baden Hotel, which is a top destination in the United States for visitors.  The rest of the area is some of the most beautiful terrain in the nation and is known as the “garden spot of the Midwest.”  Other interesting destinations include Patoka Lake Reservoir, Hoosier National Forest and multiple state parks and recreations sites.  It includes our one-of-a-kind limestone heritage, a thriving Amish community, and much more.
It is easy to see how tourism is a thriving industry. And now, with the regional tourism industry’s economic impact in full focus, the next angle we look at is: How do we maximize it?
We work hard to create the experience and feeling that we want every visitor to have when they spend time in our region.  The same feeling we have because we live here and love it.
Look for information regarding “A Promise for Southern Indiana,” a new regional tourism initiative throughout 2018.

Joe Timbrook, COO


U. S. Air Force Chief of Staff Tours Crane Innovation

By: Matt Craig
Director of Crane Community Support

Acknowledgment of Crane’s prowess in innovation and military technology reached new heights this week with a visit from General David Goldfein, chief of staff of the U.S. Air Force. Gen. Goldfein is the highest-ranking officer in the Air Force and a member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

U.S. Senators Joe Donnelly and Todd Young, and Congressman Trey Hollingsworth hosted Gen. Goldfein Jan.8 on his first ever visit to Crane for tours of several laboratories and a regional stakeholder luncheon. The visit signifies an important opportunity for Crane to showcase its work, and with its continually increasing support of U.S. Air Force programs; there is the increasing potential for an Air Force presence at Crane.

Technology developed at Crane serves every branch of the U.S. Military and its programs provide the platforms to answer some of the most critical issues facing national security today, including those related to air, ground and submarine-launched missiles and electronic warfare, which is essential in removing the threat of improvised explosive devices (IEDs) faced by our men and women in combat. During the visit General Godfein commented, that Crane should “never underestimate the importance of its culture of innovation.”

The lunch program for Gen. Goldfein focused on “innovation ecosystems,” which is Crane’s proven methodology to capitalize on our state’s assets to assist in the development of new technology and initiatives. Through state and regional partnerships, Crane brings together thought leaders from a broad spectrum of public and private sector experts, state defense agencies, universities, and regional partners such as Radius Indiana, Regional Opportunity Initiatives, and the newly formed, Applied Research Institute.

This regional approach means that not only are the best and brightest minds at work to solve some of our nation’s greatest challenges, but that there is a wide range of resources and organizations at work to ensure Crane has the infrastructure, workforce and support it needs to complete its missions. This network of partners has helped create the now nationally known innovation culture that exists right here in Southern Indiana, and has demonstrated it is committed strengthening the ecosystem.

Radius Indiana applauds the efforts of those at Crane and all of the regional stakeholders who made Gen. Goldfein’s visit a success–our region was again able to shine in a national spotlight and reinforce Crane’s value, which helps keep this important asset a thriving part of our local economy.

Matt Craig, Director of Crane Community Support

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Radius Indiana Announces Slate of Officers, New Board Members and Plans for 2018

BEDFORD, Ind. (Jan. 10, 2018) – The Radius Indiana Board of Directors begins 2018 with new Board members and a number of new initiatives for the organization, including an international economic development marketing venture.

The board reconfirmed former Radius Indiana CEO Becky Skillman as Board Chair, the election of three new Board members, and ratified a 2018 budget that includes several new priorities and projects to benefit the Radius region.

Additional officers include Vice Chair Don Schulte, Schulte Consulting; Secretary Tim Kinder, Martin County Alliance; and Treasurer Neil Dauby, German American Bank. Rounding out the Executive Committee are Misty McCammack, Duke Energy; Sabrina Burdine, Washington County Economic Growth Partnership; Doug Kellams, East Gate Business & Technology Park; and Mayor of Washington Joe Wellman.

New board members elected to three-year terms are Tim Robinette, Old National Bank; Steve Bartels, Patoka Lake Marina & Winery; Mike Roeder, Vectren; and Misty Weisensteiner, Orange County Economic Development Partnership.

“The board members bring additional perspectives to our leadership for regional economic development,” said Radius Indiana President and CEO Jeff Quyle. “I look forward to seeing what the group will accomplish for the region in 2018.”

The board also approved a 2018 budget that includes funding for the second Economic Development for Community Leadership Program, increased marketing and graphic design activities, increased support for Crane Community Development and funding to support a regional tourism strategy. The new budget also includes a Radius Indiana sponsored economic development trip to Japan slated for late fall 2018.

“The Radius Indiana trip to Japan will be the first international trip for us as a regional economic development group and will include local elected officials and several economic development professionals from around the region,” said Quyle. “Foreign investment in Indiana is a powerful economic driver and we continue to see more and more companies choosing our state for new ventures. We want to ensure that the Radius region is top of mind for companies looking to expand or locate new facilities in the Midwest.”

Other initiatives include multiple site selector trips to share the benefits of doing business in the area, regional marketing efforts, as well as a continued commitment to skilled workforce development, community development and defense industry strategy.