Greater Fort Wayne Inc. presented four awards Thursday at its annual meeting. The awards, including Elected Official of the Year and Small Business of the Year, recognize "excellence in leadership and vision."

In addition to the awards, GFW officials heard updates from the developers of several major projects, including the first phase of Riverfront Fort Wayne, for which construction contracts were approved earlier this week, as well as the renovation of the former GE campus, which will now be known as Electric Works.

"Our mission at GFW Inc. is to grow jobs, wages, and the economy to create a nationally recognized community. Projects like The Landing, The Riverfront, and the Electric Works campus are gaining national attention," said Eric Doden, chief executive officer of GFW Inc. "We are making our mark. But make no mistake, we are in a worldwide competition for talent, capital and jobs.  We must continue to be aggressive in our efforts, and, as a community stop playing defense and start playing offense.”  

The award recipients include:

GFW Inc. Chairman’s Award: Given to GFW Inc. board members for outstanding accomplishments and performance to help promote the organizations mission and vision.

  • Andrew Thomas, NAPA Ridge C

Elected Official of the Year:

  • John Crawford, Fort Wayne City Council, At-Large.  

Maclyn Parker Swagger Award for Community Vision and Leadership: Given to an individual who exemplifies persistence and will to make Fort Wayne-Allen County a thriving community by being a strong advocate for economic development.

  • Sister Elise Kriss, President of the University of Saint Francis.   

Small Business of the Year Award:  Celebrates the success of small businesses and honors their contributions to Fort Wayne’s economic growth.

  • BakerStreet