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OCRA Announces 2023-2026 Indiana Main Street Council

Monday, October 30, 2023
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Lt. Gov. Suzanne Crouch and the Indiana Office of Community and Rural Affairs’ Indiana Main Street program today announced the 2023-2026 members of the Indiana Main Street Council. The council held the first meeting this morning with the newly appointed members, which includes IPA Vice President of Community Foundation Programs Amy Haacker.

“Our Indiana Main Street communities are revitalizing Hoosier cities and towns across the state,” said Lt. Gov. Crouch, Indiana’s Secretary of Agriculture and Rural Development. “Any initiative with that level of impact needs a strong team. I am confident the newly appointed members of the Indiana Main Street Council will guide it to new heights.”

Council members are appointed to serve based on their successful track record in community development and experience supporting the Indiana Main Street program and Indiana’s downtowns. Support for the Indiana Main Street program comes through various activities, such as developing and directing policy, coordinating administrative tasks and providing assistance to accomplish the program's goals.

“We are fortunate to work with individuals in a variety of different fields to help guide our Indiana Main Street program,” said OCRA Executive Director Denny Spinner. “I look forward to all this new council will accomplish with so many dedicated members with a passion for advancing our main street and downtown corridors.”

The Indiana Main Street Council is a key entity in encouraging the economic development, redevelopment, and improvement of historic commercial districts in Indiana’s cities and towns. In the past, the IMS Council has played a leading role in hosting the 2001 National Main Street Conference in Indianapolis, determining grant programs and awards, as well as implementing the Main Street “levels system” for communities around the state.

Additionally, the IMS Council serves as a resource and advisory group to OCRA as it strives to fulfill the program's objectives. In 2024, the Indiana Main Street program will be going through a strategic planning process over the course of nine months with Main Street America. The IMS Council will play a central role in setting future goals and objectives for the program. Indiana Main Street encourages the revitalization and restoration of downtown areas throughout the state and provides various services like technical assistance and educational opportunities.

Newly appointed IMS council members include:

  • Amy Haacker, vice president of Community Foundation Programs at IPA.
  • Andrew Carty, vice president of Small Business for the Indiana Economic Development Corporation.
  • Marsh Davis, president of Indiana Landmarks.
  • J. P. Hall III, associate professor in the College of Architecture and Planning at Ball State University.
  • Meagan Heber, placemaking and environmental review manager at the Indiana Housing and Community Development Authority.
  • Eva North, president of Main Street Corydon Executive Board.
  • Brian Sheehan, business development manager at HWC Engineering.
  • Dean Vonderheide, mayor of Jasper 
  • Keith Gillenwater, president and CEO of Grow Wabash County.

The IMS Council includes individuals representing organizations involved in the Indiana Main Street program and the chair, Lt. Gov. Suzanne Crouch. Members appointed to the IMS Council will serve for a term of three years, starting on July 1, 2023, following their appointment.

A schedule of council meetings and meeting minutes are available by contacting Indiana Main Street Coordinator Andrea Kern at indianamainstreet@ocra.in.gov. All IMS Council meetings are open to the public.

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