Northeast Indiana residents to shape the future

Northeast Indiana Fund logo.

Press release from the Northeast Indiana Fund:

Northeast Indiana residents to shape the future with Vision 2020 Regional Economic Summit
Real-time voting technology will be used to gather public input on strategies for economic growth

(June 11, 2010) – The Vision 2020 Regional Economic Summit, to be held at the Grand Wayne Center in Fort Wayne at 6 p.m. on June 23, seeks broad input from community leaders and residents for all Northeast Indiana.

The event is free and open to the public. To assure that the adequate technology support is available, attendees are asked to register by email to

During the Summit, attendees will participate in real-time voting on specific goals, strategies and tactics that Northeast Indiana is considering to shape the vision for the region’s economic vitality. The real-time voting technology will allow the public to see immediate polling results on the importance of various strategies. The Northeast Indiana regional community includes Adams, Allen, DeKalb, LaGrange, Huntington, Noble, Steuben, Wabash, Wells and Whitley counties.

“Coming together as a regional community is imperative for our future success,” Mayor Norm Yoder, City of Auburn and Vision 2020 Coordinating Group member, said. “We are truly beginning to see the positive effects of collaboration in Northeast Indiana, and Vision 2020 will highlight those efforts and inspire additional partnerships.”

Vision 2020, a six-month process guided by a coordinating group of 27 community leaders, including co-chairs Mike Packnett, president and CEO of Parkview Health, and Keith Busse, president and CEO of Steel Dynamics, spent the first half of 2010 reaching out to the leaders from government, foundations, education and business throughout the 10-county region, encouraging bold and “outrageous” ideas for the future. The Regional Economic Summit will be the culmination of the process, as well as the kick-off to sustained implementation.

The Summit is unique from other programs or events in past. Broad, public input is being sought on an unprecedented scale from every corner of the 10-county region. This is an opportunity for the people of Northeast Indiana to participate in charting a bold and exciting vision for the region’s economy.

“This is a terrific opportunity for Northeast Indiana, especially at a time when economic growth and our area’s vitality have true potential for recovery,” Mayor Ted Ellis, City of Bluffton and Vision 2020 Coordinating Group member, said. “This Summit will allow the regional community to guide and shape our direction for years to come. Of course, all of this depends on working collaboratively as a region to get there.”

Vision 2020 confronts the region’s extended economic decline; it aims to reverse a 15-year downward trend in earnings. Through focus areas including 21st century talent, competitive business climate, entrepreneurship, infrastructure and quality of life, Vision 2020 aligns the efforts of the region to produce bold, sustainable results.


About the Northeast Indiana Fund: The Northeast Indiana Fund’s mission is to support the Northeast Indiana Regional Partnership and its ten member counties through the funding and coordination of charitable activities which directly contribute to increasing the region’s capacity to support new business investment and the creation of high quality jobs for the region.

About Vision 2020: Vision 2020 brings together business leaders, educators, foundations and government entities for collaboration to develop a compelling and actionable vision for the ten-county Northeast Indiana region and improve the vitality of the regional economy. Immediate and long-term strategies will focus on competitive business climate, 21st century talent, quality of place, infrastructure and entrepreneurship. Funding support for Vision 2020 is provided by: the Northeast Indiana Corporate Council; the Northeast Indiana Fund; the Cole Foundation; the Community Foundation of Greater Fort Wayne; the Dekko Foundation; the English Bonter Mitchell Foundation; the Robert Goldstine Foundation; the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation; the Lincoln Financial Foundation; and the Foellinger Foundation. More information can be found at

The Regional Economic Summit is made possible with the support of Lincoln Financial Foundation and Steve and Lisa Ford.


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