Chamber Endorses New Regional Economic Development Plan

Published Tuesday, February 6, 2018

This region’s first Regional Economic Development Strategic Plan is here! Today, the South Bend-Elkhart Regional Partnership (Partnership) and the South Bend-Elkhart Regional Development Authority (RDA) released the plan. The plan is the culmination of many months of work by hundreds of volunteers from across the region and comes on the heels of the South Bend-Elkhart Region receiving a state grant from the Regional Cities Initiative.

“Many Chamber staff and volunteers have played a key role in the development of this plan, and we are excited to see it move forward,” said Jeff Rea, Chamber president & CEO. “For years, our primary objective has been advancing regional prosperity, and we are thrilled by the collaborative effort from business and community leaders from across the region who have produced this important document. We now will incorporate elements of the new plan into our own program and work closely with our regional partners on the implementation of this plan.”

The Chamber is one of the founders of the Partnership and has been its primary funder and a strong supporter since its founding. The Chamber was also an integral part of the efforts that went into the Regional Cities grant submission and follow-through, as well as the development of the RDA.

The new plan focuses on five pillars identified by the Partnership and the RDA. Those include:
•    Educating a world-class workforce
•    Recruiting and retaining great talent
•    Attracting and growing New Economy companies
•    Helping entrepreneurs thrive
•    Promoting inclusion and sparking opportunities for women and minorities

The plan includes key strategies under each of those focus areas that will help our region grow. You can access the full plan here.

Rea added, “The Partnership and the RDA have played a critical role in bringing people from every part of our region together, first for the Regional Cities application and for the development of this plan. Regina Emberton, president and CEO of the Partnership, has been the “Captain” of our regional effort and deserves a lot of the credit for the progress that our region has made thus far. With her leadership and the support of her team and other key regional partners, we’re confident that the implementation of this plan will produce measurable results that our whole region will benefit from.”