Crossroads Regional Chamber of Commerce held its monthly membership luncheon on Tuesday. The chamber holds a networking event every month to update members on new developments in the region and allow for new contact opportunities. This month featured guest speakers from the Lake County IN Economic Alliance (LCEA), Karen Lauerman and Don Koliboski.
“LCEA is responsible for the coordinated county-wide level economic development effort, representing all the communities and unincorporated areas,” said Karen Lauerman President & CEO of LCEA. “Our job is to facilitate the growth of quality, high paying jobs and capital investments in throughout Lake County, Indiana.”
The LCEA shared a midyear economic update and spoke about future goals during the luncheon.
“We have about 73 projects in the pipeline, the top 20 most active projects are equivalent to about 8,500 jobs,” stated Lauerman. “These projects represent approximately $700 million of investment so this is a very exciting time for us.”
LCEA reported that manufacturing and TDL (transportation, distribution and logistics) industries continue to show strong interest in Lake County capitalizing on the areas commitment to making things and delivering them to market, noting the county’s proximity to Chicago is a key advantage in attracting companies to our communities.”
The Crossroads Regional Chamber of Commerce joined by NIPSCO and The Lakeshore Chamber, founded LCEA approximately four years ago, hiring staff in September 2014.
“Our role as the chamber is to advocate for the business community on any legislative issues that can have positive or negative impact on the community,” said Sue Reed President & CEO of Crossroads Regional Chamber of Commerce. “We also host community events and festivals in the towns and cities that we serve. Businesses are attracted to communities like families are. They too are searching for quality of life."
Crossroad’s mission statement is to enhance the economic and civic environment in Northwest Indiana through serving the communities and membership. New members introduced themselves at the gathering and are now part of the Crossroads network, 700 businesses strong.
“I usually come to every June membership meeting,” says Rich Shields, Director of Marketing & Business Development for Chester Inc. “I believe that networking is important. Talking to businesses to see what their needs are as well as what’s working for them gives you an idea of what’s good, and what’s not so good.”
Other organizations such as Jacob’s Ladder, a non-profit pediatric rehabilitation facility that helps children reach their full potential and quality of life, sought to reconnect. “We come out to the chamber’s meetings to see people we don’t get to see that often,” said Candace Arvin, Director of Marketing and Business Development at Jacob’s Ladder.
Crossroads Regional Chamber hosts the LCEA mid-year report to provide their members and luncheon attendees the opportunity to hear directly from the professionals with their finger on the pulse of economic development and job creation in Lake County.