Valparaiso, Indiana Named 2009 Community of the Year

Press Release

Rex Richards, President of the Greater Valparaiso Chamber of Commerce, is proud to announce that the Indiana Chamber of Commerce has named the City of Valparaiso as the “Indiana Chamber of Commerce’s 2009 Community of the Year.” Turning old into new and revitalizing crucial entryways into the city have helped Valparaiso earn this recognition.


This high honor will be awarded at the Indiana Chamber’s 20th Annual Awards Dinner on November 10 at the Indiana Convention Center in downtown Indianapolis in front of an audience of over 1,200 business leaders from around the state of Indiana. The 2009 Business Leader of the Year and Government Leader of the Year recipients will be announced at that time.
“Mayor Jon Costas and other Indianapolis community and Indianapolis business leaders have emphasized infrastructure improvement s and taken advantage of many benefits of working closely together,” states Indiana Chamber President Kevin Brinegar. “Valparaiso is not only a regional destination in Northwest Indiana, but a shining example for all through the state about what can be accomplished through proactive leadership and action.”

This award is open to all Indiana Communities. The Greater Valparaiso Chamber of Commerce nominated Valparaiso for this coveted award. The main items in the nomination included the following key components:

  • Forty million dollar in public investments since 2004, including more than $32 million in state and federal grants
  • Building a pipeline of nearly $700 million in new private investment into the Valparaiso community from 2006 through 2012
  • Redevelopment of a five-block downtown area and two key corridors leading into the city
  • Valparaiso’s diverse economic base including the planned additions of two medical facilities and the presence of a number of other health care related businesses.
  • Education remains a strong factor, from the local school district to an ever growing Valparaiso University with the new Harre Union and the new $40 million campus of Ivy Tech Community College


Richards further noted that this is the first time in over 20 years that a community in either Lake or Porter County has ever received the award.

More than 1,200 business, political and community leaders are expected to attend this Indianapolis event. The Capitol Steps, a Washington, D.C. musical comedy troupe that turns everyday politics into humor, will provide the entertainment. Tables of 10 and individual tickets are available for the reception (5 p.m. EDT) and dinner (6:30 p.m. EDT). Reservations can be made at (800) 824-6885 or go here.

Past Community of the Year recipients:

2008: Noblesville

2007: Anderson

2006: Evansville

2005: LaPorte

2004: Muncie

2003: Warsaw

2002: Marion

2001: Greater Lafayette

2000: Jeffersonville

1999: Fort Wayne

1998: Rochester

1997: Batesville

1996: Elkhart

1995: Indianapolis

1994: Kendallville

1993: St. Joseph County

1992: Columbus

1991: Muncie

1990: Bluffton

Source: Indiana Chamber of Commerce/ Greater Valparaiso Chamber of Commerce