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BOB HEISSE: Civility takes center stage in April event

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World Civility Day Logo 2017

“The Business Case for Civility at Work” is one of several workshops slated for World Civility Day in the Region on April 13.

Lew Bayer, of Civility Experts of Canada, will discuss how civility at work can increase production, retention and engagement. Bayer has written the book, “The 30% Solution.”

It’s an issue that doesn’t get much attention, but more than a quarter of workers nationally have quit a job because it was an uncivil workplace.

This and other workshops will take place at the Indiana Welcome Center in Hammond as the first part of World Civility Day events planned by Community Civility Counts.

The second part will be an awards dinner at Avalon Manor in Merrillville.

Community Civility Counts, which started with the Gary Chamber of Commerce and grew in a partnership with The Times Media Co., held its first World Civility Day last April and attracted a capacity crowd.

Last year’s dinner, however, did not include enough time to hear a lot about programs making a difference. So workshops have been added this year to expand the events.

“The Business Case for Civility at Work” session will offer participants the tools to assess, train and build civility competencies in their workplace.

This is a great opportunity for Region human resources professionals, trainers and business people to come away with ideas to use.

Other workshops include “Civility in the Classroom,” showcasing the work of teachers in two Gary charter schools and its impact; “Civility in the Community,” presented by the National Civility Center; and “Where do we go from here – chaos or community?" presented by the Urban League of Northwest Indiana.

The full list of workshops and times is linked to this column online.

The workshops precede a dinner at Avalon Manor where we’ll present the first Community Civility Counts awards, including one for top anti-bullying program in schools.

We’ll have featured speakers, including the return of Dr. Clyde Rivers, who carries Community Civility Counts’ message throughout the world. Dr. Rivers is World Peace Ambassador, special representative from Interfaith Peace-Building Initiative to the United Nations and ambassador at large from Burundi, Africa.

Community Civility Counts has gained recognition in journalism circles, winning awards in recent months. But the strength of this two-year-old awareness is in the community partnerships.

In addition to the Gary Chamber of Commerce and The Times Media Co., World Civility Day sponsors include Methodist Hospitals, AT&T Indiana, National Civility Center, Civility Experts, Propriety Publishing, Legacy Foundation, Whiting-Robertsdale Chamber of Commerce, Greater Northwest Indiana Association of Realtors, Shared Ethics Advisory Commission and Lake Area United Way.

We invite you to both of these events on April 13. Call the Gary Chamber of Commerce at (219) 885-7407 to order tickets.

Keep up with Community Civility Counts by connecting with the Civility Counts Facebook page or visiting

Thanks for reading us. Please contact me with any questions about The Times or our many publications.

Bob Heisse is editor of The Times Media Co. He can be reached at (219) 933-3327 or


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Bob is editor of The Times Media Co. He started in Northwest Indiana in April 2014 following stints as executive editor of The State Journal-Register in Springfield, Ill., and The Centre Daily Times in State College, Pa.

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