Articles about Northeast Indiana Published Nationally after Reporters Visit

October 2nd, 2017

Manufacturing, Quality of Life Focus of Articles

Northeast Indiana has received national press attention recently through the visits of two journalists, Jim Motavalli and Ron Bernthal. The Northeast Indiana Regional Partnership hosts national journalists through our work with Development Counsellors International (DCI).

National media are targeted for both business attraction and talent attraction purposes, and we strategically pitch a variety of stories each month to a diverse list of media outlets.

Jim Motavalli

Jim Motavalli, a contributor for NPR’s Car Talk, visited Northeast Indiana to get a closer look at the RV manufacturing industry. Jim and regional partners toured RV manufacturing plants in LaGrange County and Adams County, including Forest River, Riverside RV and REV.

Because of Jim’s interest in classic cars, the group stopped in for a tour of the Auburn Cord Duesenberg Museum in Dekalb County just days ahead of the world-famous ACD Festival. A visit to Thunderbird Products in Decatur left Jim impressed by the high-end, innovative boats being manufactured in Northeast Indiana.

The result? Jim produced two articles as a result of his visit, both of which bring to light the strength of the robust vehicle manufacturing industry and culture in Northeast Indiana.

One of Jim’s articles, focusing on the major presence of Amish RV manufacturing in Northeast Indiana, is titled “The Amish Don't Drive RVs. But That Doesn't Mean They Won't Build Them.” Jim references six major regional manufacturers in the article, and features photos and video from the production plants he visited. He also includes the following quotes that speak to the strength of the workforce and business environment in the region:

  • “If you’ve been laid off elsewhere, try Northeast Indiana. They’re hiring just all over the region, and since the industrious Amish are paid via piecework, some nail down six-figure salaries. The 11-county area has near full employment, and new business construction is everywhere.”
  • “The Amish run RV businesses, but they’re far from the only or the biggest players. There’s 100 RV businesses in the region, and the industry employs 28,000. It’s six percent of area employment.”
  • “… the region didn't sit on its hands: the Northeast Indiana Regional Partnership was formed to foster business growth.”

The second article, “Ahead of Their Time: The Auburn, Cord and Duesenberg Story,” centers on the vintage automobiles on display at the Auburn Cord Duesenberg Museum. Jim also mentions some of the other automotive museums in the area, including the National Auto and Truck Museum, the Kruse Automotive and Carriage Museum, and the Early Ford V-8 Museum.

Car Talk is a website and NPR-syndicated radio show that hits on all aspects of the automotive industry. The website includes articles that provide advice to vehicle owners and updates on automobile manufacturers and the industry as a whole. Car Talk’s site has an audience of roughly 765,090 unique monthly viewers.

Ron Bernthal

Journalist Ron Bernthal visited Northeast Indiana with an interest in downtown development, arts and architecture. On Ron’s visit to Fort Wayne, he spent time with numerous leaders in the community, touring the Electric Works campus, The Landing, the Fort Wayne Museum of Art and Concordia Theological Seminary. Ron has produced an article for and two radio segments for public radio station WJFF in New York.

Ron wrote “Fort Wayne Journal: Downtown revitalization projects bring tourism and new business to Northeast Indiana” for, highlighting several key Fort Wayne developments that support downtown’s growth, including Parkview Field, Ash Skyline Plaza, Superior Lofts and Electric Works.

Ron praises Fort Wayne by writing that the city’s “economic and cultural resurgence is helping the rebirth of the entire Northeast Indiana region.” has 1,770 unique monthly visitors.

His three-part radio segment, “Borders: Revitalization of Fort Wayne” for public radio station WJFF in New York includes some great details on the revitalization of Fort Wayne from Kirk Moriarty of Greater Fort Wayne Inc. and Dan Wire of the Tri State Watershed Alliance. Ron starts off the segment mentioning how multiple Indiana towns and cities are growing, but Fort Wayne has set itself apart, saying, “with its intensive public-private fundraising efforts and cooperative spirit, Fort Wayne seems to be running on double speed.”

Part two includes an audio segment from Arts United’s Miriam Morgan, who describes Louis Kahn’s designs of the center and how they play with natural light. Ron also interviews Robert Roethemeyer, VP of Strategic Planning for Concordia Theological Seminary, who discusses Eero Saarinen’s triangle-centered design elements at the seminary. Radio segments can be found on the WJFF website, under the “Borders” radio show.

A huge thank you to all of our partners who hosted these journalists during their visits to Northeast Indiana.

Visits like these, and the articles shared as a result, help us spread the word outside of our region about the momentum, the amazing businesses and the opportunities in Northeast Indiana.

Categories & Tags Business Innovation