East Central Indiana Launches Next Step to Combat Talent War

Ready to compete with other regions on a national scale, East Central Indiana (ECI) announced the launch of their new website, Forge Your Path – the first major step in establishing ECI as a destination where people want to live, work, and play. The project began as a 10-county collaborative lifestyle marketing effort led by Mindy Kenworthy, President/CEO of East Central Indiana Regional Partnership. Kenworthy and a team of stakeholders within the region established the Forge Your Path brand to highlight the many positive aspects of living in East Central Indiana, like affordability, accessibility to various entrepreneurial opportunities, and the uniqueness of the region’s many historic districts.

In addition to what ECI has to offer in literal assets come the less-tangible, but important values of easier living, great opportunities, a sense of belonging, and the chance to make a difference in these communities as they rebuild and aim their eyes towards growth. Current residents, visitors to the region, and those who are looking for a new place to call home can forge their own path in East Central Indiana.

The Forge Your Path website offers a practical look at amenities – like festivals, themed adventures, museums, and other activities – relocation information for those looking to put down roots, and tools to help current residents looking to forge a new path in their own careers – like finding an internship, accessing job training, or opening your own business. “The idea is that there’s something here for everyone and that makes our region unique,” said Kenworthy. “Everyone from current residents to graduates looking for their next step to tourists here for a short visit should find a compelling reason to keep coming back to East Central Indiana.” If people need further inspiration that they are welcome in ECI, the website also hosts a list of ECI Ambassadors, who can share their experience and love of East Central Indiana with visitors and potential residents.

Kenworthy and the Forge Your Path team also want to demonstrate to employers looking to relocate a business, and existing businesses looking to attract talent to grow, that East Central Indiana is ready and full of talented individuals. Part of the Forge Your Path project was made possible by grants from local employers, like the Economic Impact Grant from Indiana Michigan Power. Kenworthy continued, “We want ECI to be considered a major player in the Midwest when it comes to building and growing businesses. Doing that requires an understanding that our ‘better days’ are actually ahead of us and having a close relationship with local employers and residents to understand the region’s needs.”

The launch of the Forge ECI brand and website would not be possible without the support of each county and the Indiana Economic Development Corporation, Indiana Michigan Power, Duke Energy, Richmond Wayne County Convention & Tourism Bureau, New Castle-Henry County Economic Development Corporation, Blackford County Economic Development Corporation, Jay County Development Corporation, and the East Central Indiana Development Council.

This regional endeavor encourages the participation of all residents and visitors to East Central Indiana to make the region a successful, welcoming place to live. To learn more, visit ForgeECI.com and be sure to follow on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

Forge ECI – Forge ECI is an initiative of the East Central Indiana Regional Partnership and is a collaborative effort among 10 East Central Indiana counties to build pride and empowerment among ECI residents, improve talent attraction, empower people to foster change within their communities, improve the region’s amenities and quality of life, and to diversify and grow population. For more information, contact Forge ECI at info@forgeeci.com.

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