Rushville will host political and economic development leaders from several area communities next month for the inaugural Prosperity Summit. Organizers hope the summit can become an annual event.

March 27, 2015

News Release

Rushville, Ind. — The brainchild of Rushville Mayor Mike Pavey, the City will host the inaugural Prosperity Summit on Thursday, April 9 from 8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. in the 201 Building where mayors, other municipal and county government, Chamber and economic development leaders from Greenfield, Greensburg, New Castle, Rushville and Shelbyville will gather to discuss common challenges and ways to help each other improve and succeed.

According to Pavey, the concept behind the Summit is to gather decision makers from the surrounding communities to promote dialogue, network and help each other from a regional perspective.

“None of us can – or should – operate in a vacuum. Being engaged, fostering positive conversations with our neighboring communities can lead to new ideas and shared problem solving. We named this initiative a Prosperity Summit because if a regional approach is done in a fair and balanced fashion, the end result will be beneficial for all those involved and most importantly, for the constituents we all serve,” Pavey said.

The mayors of the five communities will discuss those topics their respective communities are excelling in with Greenfield Mayor Chuck Fewell covering community development, New Castle Mayor Greg York talking about educational excellence, Pavey discussing public/private partnerships, Shelbyville Mayor Tom DeBaun presenting information on economic development and Greensburg Mayor Gary Herbert discussing regionalism.

Invited guest speakers include University of Indianapolis Associate Professor Dr. Matt Will talking about the “state” of Indiana, Beazer President David Compton discussing residential growth and DTZ Associate Vice President Spud Dick covering commercial growth. Indiana Department of Transportation Intergovernmental Affairs Director Nick Barbknecht will talk about transportation investments with Indiana Economic Development Corporation President Eric Doden and Economic Development Administration Indiana Representative Darrin Fleener handling discussion topics on economic development and regionalism. David Willkie will discuss a public/private partnership with the Rural 1150 Coding Academy. Mike Harmless of Crowe Horwath LLP serves as Summit coordinator.

“The knowledge and experience each of these leaders will bring to the group is deep and broad,” Pavey said. “As mayors, we matched each of our communities with the appropriate topic so achievements could be showcased and we could learn from those in our group who have had the most success in each area. As the saying goes, a rising tide lifts all boats.

“At the end of the day, all of us hope to better understand the assets of each community, build familiarity and a comfort level that we can comfortably pick up the phone and talk with each other about challenges and resources. The goal is to implement what we learn throughout the day and come away with enhanced knowledge about how we can effectively work together to improve our own communities and strengthen our region so we all can compete on a global scale,” Pavey explained.

The Rushville mayor stated that while each city is its own entity, the municipalities share constituents with some living in one community, but working in another.

“In today’s world, businesses don’t care about boundaries; they care about the cities in which their companies are located and about their employees. Lines are blurred in many ways, so it’s very important that as municipal and county leaders we focus on creating harmonious relationships and work together to strengthen our region as a whole,” Pavey said. “Prosperity for one should mean prosperity for all in today’s global economy.”

Leadership teams from each of the five communities including economic development directors, chamber of commerce officials, city councilors, board of works members, county councilors and county commissioners are encouraged to attend the April 9 event.

Invitations have been mailed, but seating is limited. Those interested in attending this free event, should contact Carla Sharpe in the Rushville Mayor’s office at 765-932-3735 or by close of business on Monday, April 6.

The long-term plan is for the Prosperity Summit to become an annual event, rotating between each of the five cities and hosted by the respective mayor. These medium-sized communities are connected by State Road 9, State Road 3, I-70, I-74 and U.S. 40. Each county represented is more rural in nature.

Source: City of Rushville

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