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MERRILLVILLE | A few of Northwest Indiana's most distinguished residents were recognized for making the region better, including supporting the arts, providing hundreds of college scholarships and taking high school students on campus tours.

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A new report finds Northwest Indiana "a region in transition" and declares that urgent, thoughtful action is needed to prevent decline and instead propel the area's residents, communities and institutions toward greatness.

The state of health in Northwest Indiana is on the decline, with unemployment, poverty and lack of insurance among the barriers preventing many residents from getting health care and health education, according to a report released today.

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Arleen Francis is so passionate about cardiovascular health from her  personal experiences, the nurse decided to make a career out of it through prevention and education.

UNION TOWNSHIP | Despite its arterial highways and large housing developments like Shorewood Forest and Salt Creek Commons, it's still not that unusual to see rare birds in the skies and deer roaming through backyards in Union Township.

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Since opening day in 1949, Gary - Hobart Roofing & Supply has set the standard in exterior building products. Sixty one years later, current owners Jack Ronneau and Rod Ruess continue the tradition that Arthur Ronneau put in motion. As northwest Indiana's oldest and largest distributor o…

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Throughout the hospital, the musical notes of Brahm's Lullaby play over the PA system. The familiar tune brings staff and visitors alike together for a few seconds of shared celebration that another baby has been born in the Family Birthing Center at St. Mary Medical Center.

Around Porter County, a boom in the construction of new health care facilities continues, with two large facilities set to open.

KOUTS | The town put on a prettier face in 2011, and the makeover is expected to continue this year.

PINE TOWNSHIP | Situated at the doorstep to Mount Baldy, natural beauty abounds in rural Pine Township.

VALPARAISO | The redevelopment of the city's downtown and its key commercial corridors continued to progress during 2011, and it looks like that progress will not stop or even slow down this year.

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