Category: News

Radius Indiana Strengthens Manufacturing Workforce Efforts; Chris May joins the Radius team May 18

BEDFORD, Ind. (May 19, 2020) — Radius Indiana welcomes Chris May as the director of Manufacturing and Workforce Services. The newly created position supports the organization’s increased efforts in workforce retention and attraction, which is a key focus of its 2019 strategic plan.

May is set to begin at Radius May 18 and brings more than 25 years of experience in the manufacturing sector. He will help administer programs that promote collaboration among existing manufacturers and affiliate businesses as well as work to build workforce capacity for potential new employers looking to establish operations in the region. May also will work with local economic development leaders to develop a regional business expansion and retention program.

Duties for the position include facilitating a regional wage and benefit survey to capture regionally accurate information about labor costs; working with Vincennes University, Jasper, to establish and support a Catapult training program to upskill workers for the manufacturing workforce; coordinating with the Indiana Construction Roundtable Foundation to establish the “Build Yourself” training program to help increase the available workforce in the construction trades; working with the local community corrections departments to develop opportunities for the justice-involved population to participate in workforce training programs.

“Radius Indiana is looking forward to Chris becoming part of the team,” said Radius Indiana President and CEO Jeff Quyle. “He brings his long employment history in the manufacturing sector and an understanding of the dynamics and forces at work facing the industry. And, as a lifelong resident of Lawrence County, Chris has an inherent understanding of our region’s challenges as well as its potential. Last year, Radius made a renewed commitment to workforce retention and attraction and there are now many promising programs already underway or nearly ready to launch. Along with the work being done by our strong regional partners who share our commitment to workforce development, we are enthusiastic about building a pipeline of skilled workers.”

May has spent more than two decades working in and around the manufacturing industry. His experience includes management, engineer and design positions with Ford Motor Company, Cook, General Motors, OTIS Elevator and Whitney Tool Company. May also served as a three-term Lawrence County Commissioner and is in his second term as State Representative for House District 65. He has served on several boards including the Lawrence County Solid Waste Management District, Dunn Memorial Hospital, Lawrence County Economic Growth Council, and Lawrence County Redevelopment Commission. May is a graduate of Vincennes University with a degree in Industrial Design Technology.

“I am excited to join Radius, the team there has already done so much to help the region and I hope to work toward even more success,” said May. “I am passionate about manufacturing and realize its significant impact on the regional economy. I know that we have a lot of talent in the eight counties and by increasing collaboration, we can reach our full potential. I am committed to finding new partnerships and building up the programs already seeing momentum like the Catapult program for upskilling at Vincennes University, Jasper Campus.”

Chris May, Radius Indiana Director of Manufacturing and Workforce Services

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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.

Radius Indiana Facilitates Duke Energy Grants for Small Business Relief

BEDFORD, Ind. (May 18, 2020) – Radius Indiana received $20,000 in Duke Energy Foundation grants this week, which are designated for small business assistance in four of the economic development group’s eight counties.The award is part of $200,000 in Duke Energy Foundation grants given to Indiana economic development organizations across the state offering crisis relief to small businesses.

Recipients include Crawford, Greene, Martin and Orange, which will each receive $5,000. Each county’s local economic development organization will then determine which local small businesses will receive assistance through an application process and needs assessment.

“We are grateful for companies like Duke Energy that are helping small businesses during this very uncertain time,” said Radius Indiana President and CEO Jeff Quyle. “Part of our mission here at Radius is to support businesses in our region; and right now we are especially concerned about the wellbeing of our established, small businesses, and we will continue to look for ways to help ensure that they can sustain operations.”

Two additional Radius counties, Lawrence and Washington, have also been selected as direct recipients of Duke Energy grants. The local economic development organizations in those counties were also awarded $5,000, and will identify Duke Energy business customers in need of the funds.

“These are challenging times, and the COVID-19 crisis has been particularly difficult for small companies,” said Duke Energy Indiana President Stan Pinegar. “These grants will support those businesses that are the backbone of the Hoosier communities we serve statewide.

In April, Radius worked with Crawford and Greene counties to set up local, Rapid Relief Funds to aid small businesses. The dollar-for-dollar match program provided small, low-interest loans ranging from $2,500 to $5,000 to help businesses address immediate needs and help offset losses caused by COVID-19.

Small businesses in the region in need of assistance should contact their local economic development office. Businesses can also visit   radiusindiana.com/resources/#covid-19 for information on additional assistance programs and COVID-19 information.

For more information about Duke Energy grants visit news.duke-energy.com/releases.

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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.

Radius Indiana and South Central Indiana Small Business Development Center Leading Effort to Help Small Businesses in the Region

BEDFORD, Ind. (May 12, 2020) — Radius Indiana, in partnership with the South Central Indiana Small Business Development Center and Ivy Tech’s Gayle & Bill Cook Center for Entrepreneurship, are hosting a series of webinars to help Indiana small business owners navigate through the masses of resources being offered in response to COVID-19.

The newest webinar, Social Media: Mic Check-1-2-3… Wait is This Thing On?, is scheduled for Wednesday, May 13 via Zoom. This session will provide strategies for engaging content and provide resources and tools to understanding how to get the most out of your social media strategy. To learn more or to register, follow this link or visit the South Central ISBDC home page.

The Radius region is home to 6,180 small businesses, accounting for nearly 82 percent of all businesses within its eight counties. Small businesses employ 35,148 workers, totaling 40 percent of the regions’ jobs. 

Radius Indiana and the South Central ISBDC share a common goal of supporting small businesses and regularly partner on efforts to coordinate resources and educational programs in the region.

“Small businesses fuel economic growth. Through this strategic partnership, we look to bolster South Central Indiana’s drive to support and grow entrepreneurship across the region,” said Radius Indiana Vice President of Talent Attraction and Retention Keeley Stingel. “Despite the current challenges, small businesses continue seeking ways to adapt to meet their customers’ needs. We hope by offering the webinar series, businesses have the resources they need, delivered in a way that makes the most sense to them.”

The first webinar, which was presented earlier this spring, focused on helping employers understand financial statements for small businesses, as it can be hard to understand why a banker is asking, and what they’re looking for. The workshop explained the three main financial statements, the ratios banks use to determine loan terms, and the most common mistakes small businesses make when looking for a loan. It aimed to help employers grow confidence when talking to a banker about their business.

A second webinar was an E-Commerce Crash Course to help employers quickly transition to online sales and generate revenue. This webinar helped small business owners brainstorm ways to alter their business model to continue to generate revenue even during COVID-19 limitations. 

“Small businesses are facing unprecedented challenges due to the COVID-19 situation. Many small business owners have never had to consider E-Commerce as a significant part of their business strategy and it is sometimes complex and confusing for businesses to know what to do and where to find information. The E-Commerce series is one way we are working together with community partners to help small business owners learn some simple strategies and tools to use to get on-line to sell their products and services,” said Steve Bryant, Executive Director of the Ivy Tech Gayle & Bill Cook Center for Entrepreneurship and Regional Director, South Central Indiana Small Business Development Center.

The past webinars can be viewed at the Cook Center for Entrepreneurship YouTube Channel.

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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. (www.radiusindiana.com)

ABOUT ISBDC: The Indiana Small Business Development Center (Indiana SBDC) was created to have a positive and measurable impact on the formation, growth, and sustainability of small businesses in Indiana, and to help Hoosier Entrepreneurs start stronger, grow faster, and work smarter. (www.isbdc.org)

ABOUT THE GAYLE AND BILL COOK CENTER FOR ENTREPRENEURSHIP: The Gayle & Bill Cook Center for Entrepreneurship at Ivy Tech Community College Bloomington provides practical tools to help entrepreneurs of south central Indiana start and grow businesses. Founded in 2010 to honor one of the regions’ most successful entrepreneurs, Bill Cook, the Cook Center embodies Mr. Cook’s philosophy of ‘ready, fire, aim’ entrepreneurship by giving students and others the skills and resources they need to start businesses.  (www.ivytech.edu/bloomington/entrepreneurship/)

Discover Southern Indiana, NOW!

Regional tourism website features hundreds of attractions across eight counties.

 

BEDFORD, Ind. (May 6, 2020) — As the state begins to re-open, Discover Southern Indiana has immediate opportunities for those ready for a change of scenery, while keeping in mind social distancing as we navigate travel and recreation in this post COVID-19 environment.

DiscoverSouthernIndiana.com is up and running to welcome travelers from all over to the Radius region. The region-wide tourism drive is the first of its kind for the area and gives an identity to the opportunities the Radius region has to offer to its visitors.

Natural explorations allow families the opportunity to get outside of the house while still maintaining distance from others. While this is not a complete list of activities, it is meant to serve as a starting guide and more options can be viewed at DiscoverSouthernIndiana.com. We encourage travelers to check with specific attractions for hours/updates before heading out to visit any location.

“Often, when families think about vacation, they think about traveling outside of the state, and we have so much to discover in southern Indiana. The beauty alone of the rolling hills and landscape is enough, but then add on top of that two phenomenal four-star resorts, spas, casino, water park, lakes, state parks, unique lodging, a ranch where you can have hands-on experiences with elephants and giraffes, see bears, sloths, lemurs, not to mention the natural explorations or our trails, woods, and caves. Not all are open at this time, but the closed attractions will re-open as conditions allow,” said Radius Indiana’s Director of Tourism and Quality of Place Blaine Parker.

The website serves as a one-stop-shop for all and any resources that tourists may need to plan a trip to the Radius region. With sections dedicated to food and drinks, events, shopping, sports, art and culture, heritage, and outdoor recreation, the site features a vacation planning tool that allows tourists to plan a trip and offers suggestions on a mileage-based radius to help plan a manageable trip.

Creating Discover Southern Indiana was a regional, collaborative development process. Unifying the tourism initiative across the region allows community leaders and tourism businesses to cost-share practices to more effectively implement the branding because multiple counties are likely to be visited by a single visitor. The communities recognize the need to work together to invite travelers to the Radius region, which includes Crawford, Daviess, Dubois, Greene, Lawrence, Martin, Orange and Washington Counties.

Parker led a team of 10 committee members to create a unified tourism effort for the Radius region. The committee is made up of members of the region’s eight counties, the French Lick Resort, and the Indiana Department of Natural Resources. The Tourism Strategy Team met throughout 2018 to bring the idea of a region-wide joint tourism venture to life. 

The plan continued into 2019 by working with Blueline out of Bloomington to capture photography and videography from each county. Blueline also designed the new site.

In addition to the new website. Discover Southern Indiana has also launched profiles on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram to grow a following. The accounts will get behind the scenes looks at attractions across the region to entice tourists to visit the region.  

“Southern Indiana is where you can go to have that once in a lifetime experience without ever crossing the state lines. With everything that’s going on in the world right now, personally, I have been looking at what there is to do close to home, where can I go with my family where I know I can be safe and still have fun, and Discover Southern Indiana has those options,” said Parker.

To learn more about ‘Discover Southern Indiana’, visit www.discoversouthernindiana.com.

Radius Indiana Visits Chicago for First Site Selector Trip of 2020

BEDFORD, Ind. (March 16, 2020) — Radius Indiana economic development leaders took information and insights about their southern Indiana region north for a trip to Chicago to meet with site selectors. The session is the first of 2020 and part of Radius’s continued outreach program to raise awareness about the business strengths and opportunities in the eight-county region.

Radius Indiana President and CEO Jeff Quyle was joined by Zach Brown of Orange County,  Shance Sizemore of Lawrence County, and a team from Accelerate West Central Indiana Economic Development. The group met with six sets of site selectors and conversations focused on workforce attraction, development, training, retention activities, and promoting economic development throughout Indiana.

“I didn’t realize the diversity of companies located in Southern Indiana. Our clients are often looking to locate around similar types of industries. The fact that Southern Indiana has large manufacturing, food processing, and nutraceutical companies is exciting for our clients who serve these industries,” said senior manager at RSM, Debbie Singer. 

This is the fourth year Radius Indiana continues its outreach program efforts, with more site selector trips throughout 2020. The organization’s second international trip to Japan will take place this October, and is an opportunity to bring foreign direct investment to the Radius region.

“It’s very rewarding to see how relationships keep building after site selector trips,” said Quyle. “The more that site selectors are able to learn about our region, the better. Collaboration and partnerships lead to success so we are always wanting to grow.”

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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.

 

Artisan Electronics, Inc. receives 5 nominations at 2019 IndianaIntern.net Impact Awards

From: Artisan Electronics

Carmel, IN, February 18th, 2020

Artisan Electronics, it’s employees, and interns were honored to receive nominations at the 14th Annual IndianaIntern.net Impact Awards.  These nominations include: 2019 Employer of the Year, 2019 Intern of the Year – Andrea Fernandez, 2019 Supervisor of the Year – Larry Eaker, Kory Reagan, & Heath Murray.

The Annual IMPACT Awards Luncheon is a celebration of internship excellence. Indiana INTERN.net honors nominees and winners in the categories of Intern of the Year, Employer of the Year, Internship Supervisor of the Year and Career Development Professional of the Year. The nominations are submitted by the public and winners are chosen by a group of impartial judges.

In an interview with Inside INdiana Business Host Gerry Dick, Executive Director Mike Slocum said the program’s growth has been crucial for workforce development.

“It’s important because internships are no longer something we do as a favor to the boss because their niece or nephew needs an internship in the summer,” said Slocum. “This is a legitimate talent development and attraction opportunity. So for our students, they’re learning valuable skills to stand out above their peers and our employers, they’re cutting the line and they’re able to connect with students before they graduate.”

Greg Sapp, Artisan Electronics Vice President had this to say about the nominations. “Internship opportunities have been such a successful part of Artisan’s talent attraction and development program. Since beginning our internship program in 2017, Artisan has hosted 20 interns and have hired 7 interns on as full-time employees.  We plan on hosting 7 more interns in the summer of 2020 and we could not do it without the great work from our management team. We are all extremely thankful and humbled by these great nominations and we are looking forward to continued success in partnership with IndianaIntern.net”

For more information about the IMPACT Awards or to learn about how IndianaIntern.net could help you start your own internship program visit their website  https://www.indianaintern.net

(Photo from left to right: Garrett Shephard, 2019 Intern now FT employee. Andrea Fernandez, 2019 Intern – Nominated for Intern of the year. Kory Reagan, Engineering Manager – Nominated for Supervisor of the Year. Heath Murray, IT/Cybersecurity Manager- Nominated for Supervisor of the Year. Larry Eaker, Technical Manager – Nominated for Supervisor of the Year. Janae Graber – 2019 Intern now FT employee. Greg Sapp, Vice President. Courtney Uland, Human Resources)

Registration Now Open for Fourth Annual Radius Indiana Economic Development Conference

BEDFORD, Ind. (Jan. 28, 2020) – Radius Indiana announced today that registration is now open for its fourth annual regional economic development conference for community leaders coming to the French Lick Resort April 14-16, 2020.

Attendees at the two-and-a-half day Radius Indiana Economic Development for Community Leadership Program will participate in educational sessions on relevant topics. Confirmed speakers and subjects for the course will include:

  • Jim Plump, Jackson County Industrial Development Corporation, Introduction to Economic Development;
  • Michael Wilcox, Purdue Center for Regional Development, Quality of Place;
  • Matt Rueff, Thomas P. Miller & Associates, Local Housing Support;
  • Wendy Dant Chesser, One Southern Indiana, Strategic Planning;
  • Julie Miller, JLL, Site Selectors in the Economic Development Process;
  • Chelsey Manns, Manns Consulting, Real Estate Development;
  • Matt Eckerle, Baker-Tilly, Business Finance and Incentives;
  • Steve Bryant, Indiana Small Business Development Center, Support for Entrepreneurship and Small Business

“Holding this course in the heart of our region has opened the door for more people to attend and learn the principles that build successful long-term economic development strategies,” said Radius Indiana President and CEO Jeff Quyle. “After the success of our first elected official’s course, which was a short version of our upcoming course, I am looking forward to seeing the continued growth as we keep working on regional education and training.”

Speakers from state agencies, site selection companies, secondary education institutions, and financial firms will share best practices and offer perspectives on local and regional economic strategies. Topics are focused on the day-to-day functions of economic development and are designed to help leaders keep the needs of economic development at the forefront of their efforts as they return to their daily responsibilities.

Radius also plans to make several scholarships available from its own office as well as area utilities and banks. Local Economic Development Organizations and those interested in attending are encouraged to contact the Radius Indiana office to learn more about scholarship opportunities in their area.

Registration for the Radius Indiana Economic Development for Community Leadership Program is now available at www.Radiusindiana.com or by calling 812-277-9778. Registration for leaders in the Radius eight-county region is $425, and $475 for those who live outside the region. The registration page has a link to book a hotel room at the French Lick Resort for the conference days.

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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.

Radius Indiana and Eleven Fifty Academy Announce Partnership for Expanding Cybersecurity Workforce

From: Eleven Fifty Academy

Odon, Indiana: Radius Indiana and Eleven Fifty Academy announce the addition of Eleven Fifty Academy’s Cybersecurity course to the WestGate@Crane Technology Park. Strategically located adjacent to Naval Support Activity Crane, the Cybersecurity classes offered will help meet the need for skilled Cybersecurity personnel in the region. Classes are expected to begin in March, 2020. 

As the regional economic development organization for an eight-county region in southern Indiana, which includes Crane, Radius Indiana has a strategic focus to help build and retain the talent needed to support the base and its growing technical workforce. 

“In our region there is a surge in cybersecurity initiatives and opportunities,” said Jeff Quyle, president and CEO of Radius Indiana. “This field is critical to national defense and we know that the demand for highly-skilled workers will continue to increase. We are pleased to see the region rally around Eleven Fifty as a vital training tool to develop the workforce for Crane and the area’s defense contractors that carry out this very important work.” 

The Eleven Fifty Academy Cybersecurity course includes NET+ and SEC+ certifications that are internationally recognized. The Eleven Fifty Academy Cybersecurity program gives students real world experience on a cyber range with 14 hyper realistic cyber attack scenarios, which is a unique exposure to what companies battle each day. 

Cybersecurity is a gateway to transforming lives by rapidly ramping students into rewarding careers,” says Scott A. Jones, Founder & President of Eleven Fifty Academy. We are grateful for the support of Radius Indiana and Crane, for the Westgate area and its surrounding infrastructure provides an ideal location to help Hoosiers enter the much needed cybersecurity workforce.” 

“At NSWC Crane we have seen a significant growth in our Cybersecurity Workforce, which consists of both civilian personnel and contract team members. We are fortunate to have partners throughout our innovation ecosystem like Radius to bring mission relevant initiatives such as the Eleven Fifty Academy Cybersecurity program to our immediate region” says Dr. Kyle Werner, Director of Engagement for Naval Surface Warfare Center Crane (NSWC Crane). 

Eleven Fifty Academy (EFA) has consistently been named by CourseReport as one of the Best Coding Bootcamps in the nation. The Academy, now in its 5th year, has graduated 504 entry-level developers to date, not including current enrollment, through their immersive learning experience. The average starting salary of their graduates is over $55k, with some graduates, who had no prior software knowledge, earning over $81,000 after only 12 weeks in the program. 

Eleven Fifty Academy is a nonprofit organization focused upon high quality, immersive software development courses designed to accelerate the learning curve for people of all ages and skill sets. The mission of Eleven Fifty Academy is to build an ecosystem of coding talent that financially benefits the individual, their employer, and their community. 

For more information, visit elevenfifty.org. 

Radius Indiana Takes Last Site Selector Trip of 2019

BEDFORD, Ind. (Dec. 23, 2019) — Radius Indiana economic development leaders took information and insights about their southern Indiana region north for a day as hosts of an educational session in Indianapolis with site selectors. The session is the last of 2019 and part of Radius’s continued outreach program to raise awareness about the business strengths and opportunities in the eight-county region.

Radius President Jeff Quyle, other Radius staff members, utility partners and five economic development leaders from Daviess, Greene, Lawrence, Orange and Washington counties joined Quyle to discuss the latest news about the regional economy.

“Networking is an important part of my job and it’s great to have opportunities like this to meet new people and create new connections,” said Orange County Economic Development Partnership Executive Director Zach Brown. “Whether it’s learning about a new program going on in a community or getting to hear a new perspective from a site selector, I always get valuable information to take back to the job.”

The leaders from southern Indiana gave informative presentations to business advisors to showcase their communities, as well as the demographics and the quality of the workforce that powers the existing businesses in the eight counties. Radius also showcased a number of new workforce training, upskilling and attraction initiatives that are emerging.

“Site selector events with Radius allow me to stay up to date with an Indiana region that I don’t get to physically visit,” said Resource Vice President of Incentives and Location Advisors Brittany Mann. “It’s always nice to hear about ongoing projects and learning that the counties are putting resources into quality of life and workforce development- both areas that come up in my field constantly.”

This is the fourth annual Indianapolis site selector event and is the latest in a series of regional and national visits Radius Indiana has facilitated on behalf of the eight-county region since starting this program in 2016. The outreach efforts will continue into 2020, with sessions scheduled in Columbus, Chicago, Cleveland, Louisville and Nashville.

“Some of the most important connections we can make are with our neighbors,” Quyle said. “We will continue spreading awareness of the ongoing initiatives and programs in our region and being able to showcase what we are doing has proven to be beneficial for our counties. We are grateful for the site selectors in Indianapolis who continue to work with us to help us keep growing our region.”  

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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 the region to drive attraction, retention and expansion of business, thereby increasing employment and investment opportunities and quality of life within the region.

Radius Indiana Announces Winners of Regional Pitch Competition

Bedford, Ind. (Dec. 13, 2019) — Radius Indiana is proud to announce the winners of this year’s final pitch competition held at WestGate Academy Dec. 6. The contest drew participants from multiple Radius Indiana counties as well as entrepreneurs from across the state.

Winners of the High School Competition:

  • First Place | Peyton Davis of Greene County, Crane Connect
  • Second Place | Michael Claycamp of Jackson County, Aquapon
  • Third Place | Lara Santiago of Daviess County, Lion’sMane

Winners of the Adult Competition:

  • First Place | Aaron Schnur of Vanderburgh County, Endless Eyewear
  • Second Place | Nickey Ramsey of Tippecanoe County, Junobie
  • Third Place | Geng Wang of Monroe County, Civic Champs

Participants were given three minutes to present startup ideas, products or business plans and then received useful feedback and advice from a panel of judges. Winners of the student and adult competitions each received a check for $1,000 for first place, $600 for second and $400 for third.

“I think the pitch competition was a great way to get students and the community to be alert about problems in our area and then come up with creative ways to solve them. For students especially, it’s a great way to learn business skills, as well as crucial general skills that they’ll be using later in life,” said Davis, winner of the high school competition with his pitch for Crane Connect, an easy-to-use website that creates connections between contractors and highly qualified employees. 

Schnur, who won the adult competition to launch the website for his company, Endless Eyewear, a rental subscription for designer eyewear said, “This experience and prize money will be a big help in launching Endless Eyewear early in 2020. It will go toward hiring the expertise to finish the website and purchase initial inventory. In addition, the experience and feedback from the judges and other participants is invaluable as I meet with investors and fine-tune my business plan.”

The judges for the adult competition were Landon Young from Elevate Ventures, Steve Bryant from Ivy Tech and Sawyer Sparks from Soy-Yer Dough; the high school competition was judged by Joyce Poling from Ivy Tech, Megan Cox from Genie Supply and Terri Brown from the Small Business Development Center. Each judge came into the competition with previous pitch competition judging experience.

“I want to thank all of our participants and judges for making our pitch competition a success. We are encouraged by the range of ideas and interest from within our region as well as from other areas of the state,” said Radius Indiana President and CEO Jeff Quyle. “We know that cultivating new business ideas and supporting entrepreneurs is vitally important to strengthening our region and small business growth.”

Based on the interest and participation in this year’s events, Radius Indiana plans to host additional competitions in 2020.

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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.