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The Journal Gazette

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Thursday, June 14, 2018 1:00 am

GFW touts county growth

Discusses investments, gives awards at yearly meeting

SHERRY SLATER | The Journal Gazette

Employers last year announced plans to invest $242 million in Allen County, divided among 28 separate expansions and relocations.

Their plans also called for creating 1,838 jobs paying a combined $81 million.

Those are among the statistics Greater Fort Wayne Inc. recapped at its annual meeting Wednesday night at Sweetwater Performance Pavilion.

Andrew Thomas, Greater Fort Wayne's board chairman, said momentum is building in the community.

“We're implementing the vision of a nationally recognized economy in Allen County, and it's a thrill to report our results to our investors and partners,” he said in a statement.

Fort Wayne Metals made the largest investment announcement: $51.1 million and 337 new jobs. The second-largest investment announcement was $39.1 million by Multimatic.

Android Industries announced the second-most jobs to be created: 313.

Greater Fort Wayne officials also presented five awards during the meeting.

The Small Business of the Year Award was given to Steppin' Up Physical Therapy in recognition of a successful year.

The Maclyn Parker Swagger Award for Community Vision and Leadership went to Barbara Bradley Baekgaard, co-founder of Vera Bradley Inc. and driving force behind a new boutique hotel being built downtown.

The Elected Official of the Year honor went to Sen. David Long, who is retiring at the end of the year. The award recognizes his contributions in creating an attractive statewide business environment.

The GFW Inc. Service Award went to Ron Turpin, former chairman, for exemplary service and dedication to the organization.

And the GFW Inc. Chairman's Award for outstanding effort in promoting the organization's mission by a board member went to Allen Glassburn.

The evening also included a graduation ceremony for the most recent class of Leadership Fort Wayne.

sslater@jg.net