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[s21] COLUMN: New Brand Could Attract Employers
Start Date: 10/4/2012Start Time: 12:00 AM
End Date: 10/4/2012
Entry Description
As a native of North Central Indiana who’s spent a majority of my career in the auto industry, I’m proud of our region’s rich manufacturing history and the positive effects it has had on our community. But in today’s fast-changing economic landscape, communities like ours must also be willing to reinvent themselves to stay competitive and appeal to a globally competitive market.

At the most recent meeting of the Study Committee on Economic Development, which I have the privilege of chairing, legislative members discussed this very issue as it relates to the future of our state. It was encouraging to hear some bipartisan, out-of-the box thinking from local leaders about how to collectively improve our area’s economic stability. I would like to share one of their key strategies with you.

Kokomo Mayor Greg Goodnight and Marion Mayor Wayne Seybold presented an economic initiative launched in 2011 to make north central Indiana more attractive to new employers. The two mayors and their respective cities teamed together to develop the Midwest Automotive Loop, a joint marketing initiative that creates a new brand for the region, emphasizing its industrial heritage, highly trained workforce and first-class infrastructure.

One way this marketing strategy could be effective is in building credibility based on our area’s heritage of innovation and development. We have a history of successful employers, including factories from two of the largest American automotive companies, dozens of supply-chain manufacturers and research and development laboratories.

Along with our successful manufacturing history, North Central Indiana offers a number of affordable educational opportunities capable of developing a highly trained workforce. Institutions such as IUK saw its largest enrollment numbers this year, and Ivy Tech has also experienced substantial growth over the last five years. Along with the capability to develop a highly trained workforce, this region also has essential infrastructure needed to ship goods in a global economy with easy access to ports in Chicago and Toledo. One of the ways state leaders have assisted is through financial support and improvements to U.S.31 and the addition to Interstate 69.

The legislature’s study committees offer great venues for debates, discussions and presentations on new initiatives that can turn into positive legislation next session. It was great to hear local leaders present there initiatives at this past committee meeting. Of course, ideas for improvement don’t just come from committees. I am always interested in hearing from constituents as well. Feel free to contact me by email at, by phone at (317)232-9400, or visit my virtual office at to learn more about how you can contribute to the State Senate.

Contact Information:
Name: Evan Eikenberry
Phone: 317-232-9498
Entry Type:
Press Release
Entry Category:
  • Announcements
  • Category:
  • Government
  • Agency Name
    Senate Republican Caucus

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