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Northwest Indiana Forum to unveil Ignite the Region economic development plan

NWI Forum members mingle at the Forum's annual membership meeting at Horseshoe Casino in Hammond in 2015.

The Northwest Indiana Forum will present a breakdown of its "Ignite the Region: Northwest Indiana’s Strategy for Economic Transformation" economic development plan at its annual meeting later this month.

The Portage-based economic development agency, which serves a seven-county Region in Northwest Indiana, will also elect its board of directors at the Jan. 24 meeting at The Venue in Horseshoe Casino, 777 Casino Center Drive, Hammond. The meeting will take place between 5:30 and 8 p.m., with the presentation starting at 6:15 p.m.

"The annual meeting is an opportune time to learn more about the Forum’s activities, efforts, and accomplishments in economic development, public policy, and environmental affairs as well as membership," the NWI Forum said in a news release.

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The nonprofit economic development agency, which is funded by more than 130 companies from across the Region, spent $200,000 to hire Austin- and Seattle-based TIP Strategies earlier this year to "craft a playbook for economic development of our seven-county region" with the hope it would get cities, towns, and others on the same page for how to most effectively pursue jobs, investment and new businesses.

The event costs $60 for the general public and is free to forum members. For more information or to register, visit www.nwiforum.org or email Raeann Trakas at rtrakas@nwiforum.org.

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Business Reporter

Joseph S. Pete is a Lisagor Award-winning business reporter who covers steel, industry, unions, the ports, retail, banking and more. The Indiana University grad has been with The Times since 2013 and blogs about craft beer, culture and the military.