Indianapolis, Ind. – The Indiana Office of Career Connections and Talent has selected Southern Indiana Gateway consisting of Dubois, Orange, Crawford, Perry, Spencer, and Pike counties, as the state’s thirteenth 21st Century Talent Region. The designation is awarded to Hoosier communities focused on working collaboratively to attract, develop and connect talent. “We will use the designation to achieve several goals, including increase employer engagement with the education and workforce systems in high-demand industry sectors.” said Brenda Stallings, CEO, Matrix Integration, a member of the ten-member committee, “these initiatives are critical to the economic development in our Southern Indiana Gateway counties.”
The designation was announced by Indiana Secretary of Career Connections and Talent Blair Milo.
“On behalf of the Southern Indiana Gateway region, we are thrilled to be receiving this designation. Each of our six-counties are working on similar initiatives such as a talent development, broadband to every household and workforce and talent attraction. With these things in mind, it just makes since to come together and work collaboratively to see positive movement.” said Dubois County Chamber of Commerce Executive Director, Becky Hickman. “We are using a dashboard that measures the six-county data, initiatives, and goal obtainment.” Aligning with the state’s 21st Century Talent Region designation and State workforce and talent development initiatives will help us gain traction in our efforts.”
“We have gathered input from multiple types of stakeholders throughout the six-county region”, said Kathy Reinke, Executive Director for Spencer County Regional Chamber of Commerce. “We have a lead team that will meet monthly to measure our success and work on our initiatives and goals. The ten member committee include: Ashley Willis, Pike County Economic Development Corporation Executive Director, Jill Hyneman, Pike County Chamber of Commerce Executive Director, Wendi Rich, Perry County Chamber of Commerce Executive Director, Erin Emerson, Perry County Development Corporation Executive Director, Kristal Painter, Orange County Economic Development Partnership Executive Director, Michael Thissen, Crawford County Economic Development Corporation Executive Director, Kathy Renke, Spencer County Regional Chamber of Commerce Executive Director, Valerie Schmidt, Lincolnland Economic Development Corporation Executive Director, Brenda Stallings, CEO, Matrix Integration, Becky Hickman, Dubois County Chamber of Commerce Executive Director ”
Milo says business, education and community leaders have been instrumental in growing talent and fostering innovation in the Southern Indiana Gateway region. She says the region’s efforts to foster collaboration among Hoosier communities set the foundation for receiving the 21st Century Talent Region designation.