Direct from the CEO

It is an exciting time in our community, and I am honored to step into the role of Chief Executive for Greater Fort Wayne Inc. I’ve asked the staff to give me a little space in our Newsletter each month, allowing me to communicate directly with our GFW Inc. business community. Some months I may update you on the great progress we are making, and others I may simply offer food for thought.

This month, I’d like to share my thoughts on the three things that I think are critical to maintaining our momentum and our future success.

We need to aggressively work to attract new business to our community, while helping our existing businesses grow and prosper. This will require our collective innovative thinking at all levels, and having a solid workforce ready to fill new and existing jobs. That leads to our second focus, talent.

In order for Fort Wayne and the region to be successful we must attract and retain talent. Internships and programs like the GFW Fellows serve as a catalyst to connect soon to graduate students with opportunities here at home. With the goal of becoming a destination for great jobs, we will focus on quality of place initiatives that create a community that attracts and retains all kinds of talent. A place where people can thrive and grow as individuals and families.

Our third focus this year is those quality of life issues. Projects like Riverfront Development (The Promenade), Columbia Street Redevelopment and the Downtown Arena are key projects that will help create the kind of experiences residents, visitors, and employers seek and enjoy. These focus areas are directly related to our Regional Cities Initiative, and our goal to grow the regional populous from 750,000 to 1 million people in 10 Years. These won’t be easy, but with a positive attitude and commitment to excellence we can make a lasting impact on our community.

I am excited to be a part of Greater Fort Wayne Inc. and to work alongside you, our investors, partners, collaborators and believers as we continue the momentum toward our goal of becoming a leading midsize metro in the Midwest.


Eric Doden


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