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    January 22, 2016
    Delaware County - Certified Work Ready Community
    Muncie, IN —Delaware County has become the third Certified Work Ready Community in Eastern Indiana through ACT, completing 100 percent of its goals. The County joins Randolph and Rush Counties in this accomplishment. ACT launched its national Certified Work Ready Communities (CWRC) initiative in 2011. In June 2013, ACT began accepting applications directly from counties interested in participating, where there was not a statewide ACT CWRC program in place. Delaware County and other Eastern Indiana counties took advantage of this opportunity.

    The leaders of the Work Ready Community initiative in Delaware County are thrilled with this designation. City of Muncie Mayor Dennis Tyler, the driving force for this initiative, had this to say. “I’m proud and excited that Delaware County has achieved the Gold status. It shows our deep commitment to making sure our workforce is quality trained for current and future employers. It’s extremely important for all industries in this technological age.”

    Delaware County Commissioner Sherry Riggin echoed Mayor Tyler’s statement. “This gold status shows the State of Indiana and rest of the United States that Delaware County has the workers available for any company that might want to move here to grow their business.”

    Participants are leveraging the National Career Readiness Certificate (NCRC™) through WorkKeys assessment testing to measure and close the skills gap—and build common frameworks that link and align a county’s workforce development efforts. To date, 1399 Delaware County residents have attained a NCRC and 62 employers support this initiative. WorkOne and the Muncie Area Career Center assisted with the assessment testing.

    “Eastern Indiana WorkOne is happy to be a part of this initiative and would like to extend our congratulations to the Delaware County CWRC committee and Delaware County citizens for helping achieve this designation,” Mike Row, President/CEO for Alliance for Strategic Growth, Inc. “We also want to extend a special thank you to Mayor Tyler for his vision in bringing the ACT’s initiative to the region.”

    Eastern Indiana is the only area of the state that has counties involved in this initiative. Active and live counties include Delaware, Fayette, Henry, Randolph, Rush, and Wayne Counties. Jay County has also been accepted into the program and is in the training process. Currently, there are more than 280 Eastern Indiana employers supporting this initiative. For more information about ACT Certified Work Ready Communities and Delaware County status, please visit http://workreadycommunities.org/IN/035.

    ABOUT: Alliance for Strategic Growth, Inc. (ASG), recognized for its leadership and expertise, exists to support sustainable economic prosperity in Eastern Indiana through the development and implementation of collaborative initiatives that empower the regional workforce to meet the demands of the global economy. The corporation is a non-profit, public/private partnership in Eastern Indiana that serves as the Workforce Development Board for WorkOne offices  and customers in Blackford, Delaware, Fayette, Henry, Jay, Randolph, Rush, Union, and Wayne counties. Eastern Indiana WorkOne offices (www.work-one.org) assist thousands of job seekers and employers every year through a variety of employment and job readiness services. For more information on ASG, visit www.asgcorp.org.
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Traci Lutton
Vice President, Economic Development
In her role at the Economic Development Alliance, Ms. Lutton leverages economic development resources to sustain and enhance the economic growth, vitality and global competitiveness of Muncie-Delaware County as a superior business location. Lutton markets the community locally, regionally, nationally, and internationally to private investors, corporations, and site selectors through recruitment trips, website, tradeshows and other methods. Traci has knowledge and experience with a range of site selection and development services.
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Jay Julian
Chief Economic Development Officer, President/CEO
Jay is a native Hoosier, born and raised in Marion, IN. He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree at Millikin University, Decatur, IL in 1979. Jay joined the Muncie Chamber of Commerce on July 1, 2009. Julian is the former Executive Director of Development Services with City of Marion, IN. Prior to this, he was the Planning Director for the City of Anderson, IN. Jay has received awards for IACT Economic Recovery, Historic Preservation Commission Award, and Indiana Black Expo Chairman’s Award.
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Ashley Surpas
Economic Development Project Manager
Ashley Surpas, from Muncie, Indiana, came to the Muncie-Delaware County Economic Development Alliance in July of 2012 after graduating from Ball State University with a Bachelor of Political Science, a Master of Public Administration, and a Master of Executive Development for Public Service. Surpas volunteers with Project Leadership in Delaware County and serves on the Anderson-Muncie Public Transportation Coalition.
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Erin Williamson
Economic Development Coordinator
Erin Williamson joined the Muncie-Delaware County Economic Development Alliance in November 2020. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Ball State University. Erin was born and raised in Muncie and has a passion for community and local business. In her free time, she enjoys watching sports, being in nature, and spending time with loved ones.