The Warsaw/Kosciusko County Chamber of Commerce led a delegation of local business people to Washington, D.C., as part of the Indiana Chamber annual D.C. Fly-In.
Dennis Hively, WK Chamber board chair and 1st Source Bank; Jane Wear, WK Chamber incoming chairperson and Cardinal Services; John Warren, Tower Bank and WK Chamber past chair; Rick Kerlin, WK Chamber board and Kerlin Motors; and Frank Rhoades, E.F. Rhoades & Sons; joined Chamber President and CEO Mark Dobson on the trip to D.C. Brad Bishop of Orthoworx also joined the local delegation along with nearly 100 business people from around the state of Indiana.
The Fly-In is an important part of the WK Chamber’s business advocacy agenda.
Rhoades stated, “(What) an incredible experience for me to be a part of this trip, to have the opportunity to observe and ask questions of the elected officials who represent our state.”
Attendees gathered for a legislative reception with all but one of Indiana’s elected delegation. The evening’s moderator was Gerry Dick of Inside INdiana. Each elected official was given an opportunity to address questions from the crowd.
The next morning was an opportunity to meet with our elected officials. Meetings were set with Senator Joe Donnelly, Congressman Todd Rokita (4th District), Congresswoman Jackie Walorski (2nd District), Congressman Peter Visclosky (1st District), and Congressman Marlin Stutzman (3rd District). Congressman Stutzman received the Kosciusko County attendees in a special meeting arranged by the WK Chamber.
One consistent message heard by the WK Chamber attendees was the level of cooperation among Indiana’s elected delegation. They all spoke of the unity of purpose when it comes to issues of importance in Indiana. Jane Wear commented that “it was refreshing to see that even though the elected officials of both parties in Indiana do not agree on everything, they are meeting regularly and making effort to advance decision making.”
John Warren may have best summarized the Fly-In when he noted that, “The WK Chamber certainly has the respect and ear of our elected officials.”
Plans are already in the works for the 2014 Washington, D.C., Fly-In.