'The Haute' Aims to Bust Perceptions

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The Haute Initiative President Mark Gibson was part of Tuesday's launch of the community-wide effort. The Haute Initiative President Mark Gibson was part of Tuesday's launch of the community-wide effort.

An effort designed to promote and grow Terre Haute and Vigo County has launched. The Haute Initiative President Mark Gibson says the effort brings together stakeholders in economic development, tourism, education and business to bolster a perception of the community he says is outdated. "We've got the goods, we just need a little swagger," Gibson said, adding he believes payoff of the initiative -- which includes Tuesday's debut of TerreHaute.com -- could be immediate.

In an interview with Inside INdiana Business, Gibson discussed the long-term goal of positioning the city and the county as a "vibrant, dynamic place in which to live, work and play." In addition to the website, the effort will also include a series of promotional videos, which Gibson says will help change negative perceptions held inside and outside Terre Haute. "We just need to shed our inferiority complex and clearly, accurately and engagingly tell our story," he said.

If successful, Gibson says The Haute Initiative will help attract and retain businesses, jobs and professionals to the state's 12th-largest city. He says challenges include beating the perception that an effort of this nature has already been done. To combat this, Gibson says The Haute Initiative will engage the entire community. "We are coming together," he said. "Whether it's civic organizations, the city of Terre Haute, organizations like the Convention and Visitors Bureau, the Economic Development Corp., the Chamber of Commerce, and then we also have the universities here and the colleges -- Indiana State University, Rose-Hulman (Institute of Technology), Saint Mary-of-the-Woods (College) and so on. Then there's also the business community, so all of these community partners coming together to help promote ourselves in a unified front."

You can connect to more about The Haute Initiative by clicking here.

In an interview with Inside INdiana Business, The Haute Initiative Inc. President Mark Gibson discussed the long-term goal of positioning the city and the county as a "vibrant, dynamic place in which to live, work and play."
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    • Jeff Rea serves as CEO and president of the South Bend Regional Chamber of Commerce.

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