Indiana County Chamber of Commerce and Downtown Indiana Join Forces to Align the Two Organizations

The Indiana County Chamber of Commerce recently secured an agreement with Downtown Indiana, officially bringing the two entities together. The two community partners are combining their resources and talent to bolster community engagement and economic development efforts in the downtown area. This partnership will clarify and focus roles and responsibilities that benefit relationships existing in our community.

The agreement officially took effect on January 1, 2023.  Efforts to unite these organizations have been in the process since the fall of 2021. This alignment will create a more efficient way of serving business, engaging with the community, attracting visitors, and enhancing economic development initiatives.  Dave Reed, Chairman of the Indiana County Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors stated that the new arrangement will be important in moving the area forward.

“The new partnership just makes sense for both organizations and for the community,” Reed said.  “Pulling resources together to drive the vision of economic growth and a vibrant downtown is an essential building block for the future of Indiana County.” 

The recent partnership with Downtown Indiana, Inc. is in line with the Chamber of Commerce’s strategy to encourage and protect the trade and commerce of the area. This integration will promote a revitalized economy and cultivate practices that model growth and exchange of new ideas welcomed in the Indiana County community.  Chad Martin, President of the Downtown Indiana Board of Directors, says that this partnership will align the vision of both organizations.

“Downtown Indiana is excited to partner with the Indiana County Chamber of Commerce, its Board of Directors, and its member businesses to enhance the organization’s ability to support a healthy, lively, and well-maintained Downtown,” Martin commented.  “We are fortunate to operate within a community that recognizes the value of collaboration in working towards common goals, and we’re optimistic about the impact this partnership will have in achieving those goals.” 

Under the agreement, Downtown Indiana will continue to operate under its Board of Directors with oversight and resources being provided by the Chamber of Commerce.  The search for a new Executive Director for Downtown Indiana is also underway with the position being housed in the Chamber of Commerce offices on Philadelphia Street.  Mark Hilliard, President of the Indiana County Chamber of Commerce, said that local businesses will be the ones who benefit the most from the agreement.  

“This collaboration is going to create new and exciting opportunities for businesses in Downtown Indiana as well as residents in Indiana County,” Hilliard said.  “We are looking forward to some exciting new events and initiatives in the coming years as well as working together to enhance some of the great things currently happening in Downtown Indiana.”

Hilliard said that under the new agreement there would be no changes in membership over the course of 2023.  Additionally, Downtown Indiana businesses who are members of the Chamber of Commerce would also be members of Downtown Indiana and have access to the benefits of Downtown Indiana’s work. The Chamber also reports that a membership drive is in the works to offer new members a temporary membership.  More details will be announced soon.