Eric Doden is stepping down as chief executive officer of Greater Fort Wayne Inc., effective December 31. During his tenure, GFW Inc. has assisted with 79 business expansions and relocations in Allen County, including expansions by General Motors ($1.2 billion investment) and Fort Wayne Metals ($51 million investment), and locations by Walmart (a $181 million dairy processing facility) and Multimatic ($39 million investment). These 79 deals resulted in a total of more than 4,200 new jobs and $184 million in new annual payroll. He has also championed community projects such as Riverfront development, The Landing, Electric Works and more.
"The reasons for this change in my life are multiple: I have a passion for operating, coaching, and mentoring in my private-sector ventures, and I have been on a leave of absence from Domo Development for six years. In fairness to my partners, it is time for me to be more fully engaged in our business," Doden said. "The demands of being the CEO of GFW Inc. are relentless, and I look forward to spending more time with my wife and best friend, Maci, and our five children."
For the remainder of his tenure, Doden will spend a significant amount of time recruiting companies from across the country to locate in Allen County, and working with Indiana’s major economic development organizations to develop additional state-level tools for a 21st-century economy. He will also work with the GFW Inc. board to help ensure a smooth succession. Doden previously served as president of the Indiana Economic Development Corp.
John Urbahns, executive VP of economic development, will step in as GFW Inc.’s point person for the Electric Works project, effective immediately. Urbahns has a 20-year track record as a leader in Fort Wayne community development, including serving with GFW Inc. for more than four years.