Partnership Update: How do you Make It Your Own in Northeast Indiana?
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MARCH 2019

Building a Brand for a Region
12 Years of Collaboration to Develop Brand Promise

After more than six months of analysis and design, the Regional Partnership team celebrated Valentine’s Day with the unveiling of the regional branding initiative—Make It Your Own.

The Make It Your Own brand is bold and energetic, targeted to the most mobile demographic in the economy; people ages 21-45. The brand embraces our region’s legacy of manufacturing and innovation and it embodies Northeast Indiana’s strengths and opportunities.

With the brand developed, now it is up to us to implement the brand tools and materials through our network of regional employers, partner websites and recruiting efforts. While we are thrilled with the unveiling, we understand that building and disseminating the messages requires a sustained effort over many years.

Economic developers, employers and members of the community all play a role in making the brand come alive. 

How can you Make It Your Own?

Read more and download brand elements >>

Business Development

Strong Labor Force Attracts Foreign Investment to Northeast Indiana

As uncertainty looms with trades and tariffs, the competitive global economy still recognizes the United States as a reliable investment. But what does that mean for our region?

Many regional business leaders consistently hear from local and regional economic developers that Northeast Indiana is experiencing critical workforce shortages. However, when compared with other states and countries vying for foreign investment, we rely on our strong, productive labor force to attract new international businesses. 

Recently, the Indiana Economic Development Corporation (IEDC) listed Indiana at 65.1 percent labor force participation, compared to the U.S. rate of 63.1 percent. For 55 months in a row, Indiana has outpaced the U.S. national rate.

Here are a few factors that illustrate the benefit of strong foreign investment in the region.

Read the full article >>

To learn more about Northeast Indiana’s business development efforts, please contact Vice President of Business Development Chad Ruston.

Chief Executive Features Design Collaborative

Through the Regional Partnership's work with the national public relations firm Development Counselors International (DCI), Dale Buss featured Pat Pasterick of Design Collaborative in his 26-page special report in the January/February print edition of Chief Executive titled “Talent in 2019: Working the Problem.” 

Chief Executive’s print edition has a circulation of 42,450, and its online site reaches 181,095 unique visitors each month.

Read the full article >>

Talent Attraction

Behind the Brand: What Inspired Make It Your Own

“Make It Your Own” is Northeast Indiana’s new brand to attract target talent ages 21–45 to live and work in the 11-county region.
The brand came together through a six-month process of thorough research and intentional collaboration. A brand task force of regional marketing leaders acted in an advisory role, providing guidance and perspective during the development of the Make It Your Own brand.
As Barry Rochford, strategic communication officer for Dekko Foundation in Kendallville and brand task force member, said, the brand is rooted in research.

“The fact that this brand was developed using insight from internal and external audiences is very compelling. Make It Your Own is authentically rooted in our strong history of manufacturing and entrepreneurship. It’s also positive, inviting and forward-looking, speaking to people who are actively looking to make the next move and put their stamp on a community,” said Rochford.
Want to learn more about how the brand was developed? From the bold tagline to the intricate four-color palette, learn more about the creation of Make It Your Own.


Make It Your Own PSA Launches on WPTA

The Regional Partnership is working with WPTA on a series of public service announcements (PSAs) to showcase talent living and working in the region. In our new Make It Your Own series, we introduced arts and culture activist and Whiting, Ind. native Jasmine Bejar.

Meet Jasmine >>

To learn more about the region's marketing efforts, please contact Vice President of Marketing & Strategic Communications Kate Virag. To learn more about talent attraction, efforts, contact Director of the Road to One Million Michael Galbraith.

Talent Development

RSVP for the Early Learning Summit

Fort Wayne is hosting the statewide Early Learning Summit on Thursday, Nov. 7 at Purdue Fort Wayne, and we’re encouraging all business leaders to attend.  

According to the Indiana University Public Policy Institute, lack of high-quality early learning options cost:
  • $1.1 billion lost in economic activity annually
  • $118.8 million lost in tax revenue annually
  • $1.8 billion in direct cost to employers annually
The Regional Partnership’s Vision 2030 Early Learning Committee is working with the State of Indiana and Transform Consulting Group to deliver a conference aimed at business leaders across Indiana to provide meaningful, actionable steps leaders can take to advance early learning in their own businesses to support the current and future workforces.

We are encouraging all regional business leaders to attend this critical event.

RSVP to this event today or learn more about sponsorship opportunities by contacting Director of Regional Initiatives Amy Hesting. 

Intern Season Approaching! Remember These Important Tasks

With internship season coming up for employers and students alike, here are a few important dates to remember.
  1. is hosting an online internship fair on Thursday, March 28. Employers are encouraged to register for this statewide internship fair.
  2. Post your internship position on to market your opportunity to talent regionally and statewide.
  3. The Regional Partnership will release the dates for our 2019 Professional Development Series next month. During the professional development series, which is offered to regional employers' interns for free, interns will be able to connect with the community, gain exposer interns to other organizations and leverage opportunities to network and socialize. 
Share This Article >>

For more information about talent development or the Regional Internship Program for Employers, please visit the website or contact Program Manager Sonya Snellenberger-Holm.

Regional Partnership Seeks Interns

The Regional Partnership is hosting two interns this year and we're looking for the right talent!

  • Business Development Intern
  • Regional Initiatives Intern

The internship offers experiential learning opportunities with hands-on personal and professional development through two specific programs: six professional development summer workshops and weekly CliftonStrengths coaching.

We invite interns to attend a series of professional development workshops to network and meet other interns in the region, and also to hone their professional skills like etiquette, communication and project management. We also encourage interns to attend meetings on behalf of the organization to learn, interact and network with other professionals.

Interns will also develop time management skills through project management tasks and also enhance their communications skills while preparing for their final presentation to the team. 

Learn more about the internship opportunities >>

Business Attraction

Permitting Excellence Coalition Honored for Streamlining Permitting

Jurisdictions participating in Northeast Indiana's Permitting Excellence Coalition (PEC) were honored at a permitting recognition reception Wednesday, Feb. 20, hosted by the Northeast Indiana Regional Partnership and HPG Network.

The PEC’s efforts to streamline permitting aims to increase Northeast Indiana’s business-friendly environment by making it easier and faster for companies to obtain appropriate permits to build and expand in the region, encouraging economic growth.

Clinton Knauer, director of building and planning in Steuben County, said communities in Northeast Indiana are experiencing tremendous growth, and this growth means an increased demand for permits.

“In the PEC, we know we must meet the increased demands for permits. It’s a very busy time. For us to succeed, the process must be efficient, affordable and straightforward,” Knauer said.

Learn more about the PEC >>

To learn more about the region's permitting efforts, please contact Director of Regional Initiatives Amy Hesting


Read more about each business >>

For more information about investment in the Regional Partnership, visit the website or contact Director of Stakeholder Development Nick Darrah.

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Copyright © 2019 Northeast Indiana Regional Partnership, All rights reserved.

200 East Main Street, Suite 910, Fort Wayne, IN 46802
Phone: (260) 469-3469

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