COLUMBIA CITY, Ind. – Following his State of the State speech the evening before, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence brought his Road Map for Indiana up to Northeast Indiana for a January 23 evening meeting with area business leaders and CEOs that included Dane Miller of BioMet, Joe Peters of Ultra Electronics USSI, John Nolan of Steel Dynamics, and Columbia City Mayor Ryan Daniel.
As part of the gathering of 14 business, economic development and government leaders, Tino Pereira, president and CEO of Iotron Industries, discussed the site selection process that his Vancouver, Canada company completed in 2011. He outlined to the group why Indiana was successful in attracting the $15 million expansion of Iotron’s electron-beam sterilization and material modification operations to the state instead of Ohio or Illinois. Pereira noted that during the extensive multi-state search, Iotron executives found “that some pretty exciting things were going on in Indiana” for business development.
Pointing out that it was clear that there would be “less risk to operate in Indiana” than in neighboring states, the Iotron CEO said that the ability to trust the people in Indiana was a huge deciding factor.
Gov. Pence amplified on that critical factor in his talk, noting that he appreciated Pereira’s “use of the word ‘trust,’” as it is an Indiana differentiating uniqueness.
The Governor covered several points in his formal Road Map during his talk, emphasizing that there were specific goals and objectives clearly outlined that he expected his administration to be held accountable for.
Emphasizing opportunities now before Indiana, he emphasized that now is “no ordinary time in the life of our state,” with the capacity to now “go from good to great.”
He singled out regional workforce development, declaring that “improving the quality of our workforce is going to be an issue up front and center for us.” He noted that during his administration the focus on workforce development would not be Indianapolis-centric, but that he expected regional efforts around Indiana to advance the quality of their own workforce. This issue was welcomed by those present, as John Sampson, president and CEO of the Northeast Indiana Regional Partnership, emphasized.
Gesturing around the Iotron technology workspace, the Governor said that as Indiana is successful in advancing the quality of its workforce, it would be more successful in attracting “a spectacular facility like this.”
Wrapping up his comments before soliciting feedback from the group, Gov. Pence said: “I believe that success begets success.”