Gwaltney Takes Top Honors; BizVoice Total Grows to 50

Readers of the Chamber’s BizVoice magazine have seen the name Candace Gwaltney quite a bit over the past 18 months. Candace has played an ever-growing role in analyzing the issues and telling the company stories in our bimonthly publication, as well as being a key contributor to other communications and public relations efforts.

Candace took top honors in two categories in the recent Indiana Society of Professional Journalists "Best in Indiana" competition. I like to attribute that in part to her journalism background at Ball State, but even that fine university can’t take all the credit for the strong interviewing, organizational and writing skills Candace possesses.

Her winning entries: 

Matt Ottinger earned an honorable mention in the environmental category for Greener Building Practices: Trials and Benefits for Indiana Businesses (July-August 2008) and Tom Schuman placed second in the Best Print Feature category for 2008 Government Leaders of the Year: Joe Kernan and Randall Shepard (November-December 2008).

BizVoice has now earned 50 state and national awards over the past 10 years. It takes a talented and dedicated staff to achieve such a consistenly high performance level. Congratulations to all. Keep reading BizVoice, Indiana’s only statewide general business magazine. If you’re not familiar with the publication, what are you waiting for?

Pillars of Indiana Awarded at Annual Dinner

A heartfelt congrats and thanks to the winners of prestigious awards last night at the Indiana Chamber’s 19th Annual Dinner:

Business Leader of the Year: Tony George, Indianapolis Motor Speedway Corp.
George became CEO of the family-owned Indiana Motor Speedway Corporation in 1990 and later founded the Indy Racing League. During his reign over the famous two-and-a-half-mile oval, George has added to the event offerings beyond the famed Indy 500, with NASCAR’s Brickyard 400, a stretch of Formula One races and, just this year, Indianapolis’ first MotoGP. He also led efforts in 2008 to unify open wheel racing under the IndyCar Series, allowing the Indy 500 to remain the cornerstone event. In addition to facilities and events at the Speedway, George and his family oversee Terre Haute-based baking enterprise Clabber Girl. Last year’s winner was Niel Ellerbrook of Vectren. 

Government Leaders of the Year: Former Gov. Joe Kernan and Indiana Supreme Court Chief Justice Randall Shepard
The bipartisan pair led the seven-member Indiana Commission on Local Government Reform. The effort produced 27 bold recommendations in areas in which Hoosiers could realize better delivery of services and set the stage for Indiana to restructure local government for the benefit of all citizens. Among the suggestions: eliminate township government, realign county government by reducing the number of elected officials and by creating a single county executive for more accountability, increase countywide coordination of the delivery of emergency response services and encourage joint purchasing among school corporations. Last year’s winner was Mayor Graham Richard of Fort Wayne.

Community of the Year: Noblesville
Noblesville saw its population increase from less than 30,000 in 2000 to nearly 40,000 people five years later and with the numbers still on the rise, put together an aggressive plan to supplement its residential growth. An unprecedented 3,600-acre-plus Corporate Campus combines industrial and commercial development – leading to a more diverse tax base and providing job opportunities for community residents – with additional housing opportunities. Downtown is also emphasized, with longtime professional and retail operations joined by a variety of newcomers – all benefiting from city funding devoted to marketing and infrastructure improvements. Last year’s winner was Anderson.

Townships Sinking Lower and Lower

As we approach Halloween, how appropriate that township officials keep delivering tricks (with no treats) to taxpayers. We’ve seen plenty of examples of referendum campaigning while on the job from the layer of government that is "closest to the people."

Stop Governing Like This reported last week that the Indiana Township Association wants more dues from its members to fight the Kernan-Shepard recommendations and suggests using funds earmarked for professional dues and subscriptions. That’s taxpayer dollars for a political campaign.

You’ve got to be kidding! Can anyone really think that this outdated form of government should be sustained?