The Northwest Indiana Forum has chosen a new leader. Heather Ennis will become president and chief executive officer next month. She has served as executive director of the Duneland Chamber of Commerce and president of the Duneland Economic Development Co. March 3, 2014

News Release

Portage, IN— Jill E. Ritchie, Northwest Indiana Forum Board Chair, announced today that Heather Ennis will be the new President and CEO of the regional economic development organization. Ennis, the first woman to lead the group, will take the helm in early April.

“Heather brings an excellent set of skills to the position,” said Ritchie. “We look forward her leadership in carrying out the Forum’s mission to foster a positive business climate and attract investment and quality jobs in harmony with the environment,” said Jill Ritchie, Forum Board Chair.

Ritchie reported that the Forum Managing Board of Directors approved the recommendation of the Search Committee to hire Ennis at its called meeting on February 28. The Search Committee noted that Ennis’ experience with organizational operations, capital investments, community partnerships and business attraction/retention will add to the depth of expertise currently on staff.

“I am honored to be selected for this position and look forward to working with the Board, members and staff in moving the organization and Northwest Indiana forward,” said Ennis. “This is an amazing opportunity to build upon the many accomplishments of the Forum.”

Previously Ennis was Executive Director of the Duneland Chamber of Commerce and President of the Duneland Economic Development Company improving the quality of life and breadth of economic opportunity within the five lakefront municipalities of Beverly Shores, Burns Harbor, Chesterton, Dune Acres and Porter.

Additionally she was a member of the Northwest Indiana Forum Economic Development Committee, the Porter County Economic Development Alliance and the Porter County Jobs Cabinet.

Her passion for community building and economic development stems from her husband and young son and a commitment to raise her family in Northwest Indiana to strengthen the region for the next generation. The Northwest Indiana Forum is the voice of business leadership and regional economic development organization serving Lake, Porter, LaPorte, Starke, Jasper, Newton and Pulaski Counties. With more than 125 members, the Forum works to create a positive business climate promoting investment and quality job creation while protecting the environment and critical components of a sustainable regional economy. Funded by membership contributions and grants, Forum membership translates into a direct investment in the region’s future. Source: Northwest Indiana Forum

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