Linking Veterans With Jobs and More

sThe Indiana Department of Veterans Affairs will be visiting eight Hoosier communities over the next several weeks, holding Community Outreach events that will offer veterans, active duty members and their dependents opportunities to connect with services and prospective employers.

All events are free. Registration is requested for planning purposes. Each event will be held from 1:00-6:00 p.m. (local time) in the following communities:

  • October 27 – Valparaiso – Porter County Expo Center, 215 E. Division Road, Valparaiso. Register
  • October 28 – South Bend – Ivy Tech Community College, 220 Dean Johnson Blvd, South Bend. Register 
  • October 29 – Ft. Wayne – Ivy Tech Community College, Coliseum Campus, Room 1640, Fort Wayne. Register
  • November 6 – Terre Haute – Ivy Tech Community College Terre Haute Main Campus, The Community Room, 8000 South Education Drive, Terre Haute. Register
  • November 13 – Bloomington – Ivy Tech Community College, 200 Daniels Way, Hoosier Times Student Commons, Bloomington. Register
  • November 20 – Columbus – Ivy Tech Community College, 4475 Central Avenue, Columbus Learning Center, Columbus. Register
  • December 4 – Lafayette – Ivy Tech Community College, Grand Hallway, 3101 S. Creasy Lane, Lafayette. Register
  • December 9 – Kokomo – Indiana Wesleyan, Kokomo Education and Conference Center, 1916 East Markland Avenue, Kokomo. Register

Additional outreach events will be planned for Muncie, New Albany, Bedford and Jasper. Those interested in attending events in these communities can find more information here or call (800) 400-4520.

“Each event will provide information and assistance with VA benefits, claims processing, remission of fees and even what to do if someone wants to enroll or return to college,” said Deanna Pugh, Director of Veterans Employment and Education. “The Indiana State Police, Dish, NiSource, United States Postal Service, Kroger and Lowes will be among the companies and organizations looking to hire employees to work in these communities.

“We will also offer Dale Carnegie sessions to help veterans prepare for interviews. We’re very excited about connecting our resources to our veteran communities and helping link those who have served our country with the many services designed specifically to assist them.”

A new state law that took effect July, 1, 2014, allows for approximately 26,000 post-911 veterans to apply for assistance through the Military Family Relief Fund. This new law eliminates the three-year restriction on access to the fund, which provides grants that may be used for needs such as food, housing, utilities, medical services, transportation and other essential family expenses. The Military Family Relief Fund has a balance of more than $7 million and lifting the cap will ensure those funds are available to support Hoosier veterans and their families.

Since its establishment in 1945, the Indiana Department of Veterans Affairs (IDVA) has remained focused on aiding and assisting “Hoosier” veterans, and qualified family members or survivors, who are eligible for benefits or advantages provided by Indiana and the U.S. government.

Packing a Powerful Lineup

I received a visit in early 2008 from Terry McWilliams, founder of a Louisville area-based investor relations firm. After conducting a successful equity/investment conference in his home state, he was looking to bring the idea to Indiana. The initial event did take place that fall at the then recently opened Lucas Oil Stadium.

Terry and a team of supporters are back in 2010 with a strong list of Hoosier companies that are going to talk about their performance and their future plans. The primary audience: analysts, fund managers and institutional investors. And, as Terry explained in a recent e-mail, the people who can benefit the most are "those with companies that plan to go public, as they can witness the investor commuications process from a front row seat."

You can check out the details of the September 9 event (at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway this time around). It’s certainly a bit of a niche audience/event, but anytime you can get the likes of the following in one place to talk about their organizations, that’s a good thing — and an insight into our immediate and longer-term economic future from some executives who are at center stage of the battle.

Big names: Eli Lilly, Cummins, Steel Dynamics, NiSource, Zimmer, Hillenbrand, Interactive Intelligence, a variety of banks and more. Michael Oxley, co-author of the Sarbanes Oxley Act, will deliver a keynote presentation.

Deadlines and Developments are Part of the Business

In this era of Twitter, smartphones and cable news networks, the minute something happens we know about it. A lot has been said/written/tweeted/etc. about print media dying.

While that’s a debate for another day, I will say I experience a monthly euphoria when the latest copy of Vanity Fair (ahem, I mean Forbes) is waiting for me in the mailbox.

I don’t expect to the find the news of the day when I pick up a magazine. No, I am looking for those in-depth stories and images that are much more enjoyable on glossy pages than a retina-burning digital screen.

So, that brings us to my point … the latest issue of BizVoice. Just like other magazines, we work on a production schedule that makes breaking news nearly impossible (once again, not the role of magazines anyway).

While topics in the magazine are planned so they are relevant for when they are released, those pesky deadlines can make things complicated. Case in point:

  • January 26 – I sat down with Eileen O’Neill Odum, NiSource executive vice president and NIPSCO CEO, for a brief interview for the BizVoice “Getting to Know” feature.
  • Our conversation was then turned into a nearly two-page spread for the March/April issue, which was sent to the printer February 12 – two weeks before it’s distributed to readers.
  • February 18 – Odum announced she would resign her position at the end of the month to spend time with her family. 

What are the chances? I guess that’s part of the deadline business. Don’t write off the story though – Odum’s words remain relevant as she discusses the company and Northwest Indiana. Go ahead and get to know her. We wish Eileen all the best as she enjoys some valuable time with family.

I can’t help but wonder if there’s something in the Northwest Indiana water though. Vince Galbiati officially resigned his position as CEO of the Northwest Indiana Forum the day after participating in a BizVoice roundtable discussion.

While we could have decided to leave him out of the story, you’ll find his perceptive comments are included (with a note acknowledging his resignation). You’ll also find several other stories in this issue highlighting Northwest Indiana. And just in case my theory on the water is correct, I’ll keep you posted on any other resignations.