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Chamber of Commerce: The plan for tomorrow

The Beatles once sang "tomorrow never knows." To some extent this statement is true, but it did not keep a group of community leaders from gathering on Jan. 30 to hear a report on the future.

The steering committee for Terre Haute Tomorrow presented its Community Plan to more than 75 people gathered at the First Financial Bank Conference Center.

Dozens of local citizens, working through committees and sub-committees, developed goals, objectives and strategies.

Hours of meetings, writing, and hard work have gone into the development of the plan. In several instances, we see hopes and dreams reduced to writing. In others, we can point to realities.

Wabash River Development and Beautification Inc. exists in the form of dedicated people and a plan specific to its cause. Meeting once a month at 7 a.m. in the Chamber if Commerce offices, this group is slowly but surely checking off its accomplishments, determining what is next on its list and the best way to mark it done.

As with each of the groups inspired by believing in Terre Haute Tomorrow, you will find each member of Riverscape, as it is known, is committed to its goal as if it was his or her livelihood.

Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College has partnered with the Chamber to establish the Wabash Valley Leadership Institute. Born from discussions had as a part of Terre Haute Tomorrow and its identification of a need for leadership development in our community, the Institute is currently seeking applicants for its second cohort. Go to www.smwc.edu/wvli and apply now. You will experience another reality that is Terre Haute Tomorrow.

Dale Griffin died while serving his country in Afghanistan. The Griffin family set out to establish a memorial and tribute to their son and brother with a bike park to be built on property he once enjoyed. Griffin Bike Park was not born of Terre Haute Tomorrow, but it has been adopted by it. Seeing beyond their original intention, the Griffin family now envisions the bike park as an integral part of Terre Haute Tomorrow, as it enhances quality of life and community image, and supplements economic development, as it makes our community a destination.

What tomorrow doesn't know, it will soon discover. As with Riverscape, the Leadership Institute, and Griffin Bike Park, each of the goals established by Terre Haute Tomorrow will become realities. Realities created by people. Take a look at the Community Plan. Go to the website mentioned above. If you'd like to see it on paper, pick it up at the Chamber office (630 Wabash Ave., Suite 105). Read it, absorb it and find something among the goals and objectives that inspires you. Read it from cover to cover. If you have an idea, share it. What you will not find in the Community Plan is a statement that closes out any person, any idea. But be ready, there is work to be done.

"As for the future, your task is not to foresee it, but to enable it." These are the words of 20th century author, poet and aviator, Antoine de Saint-Exupery. Unbeknownst to those who created the Terre Haute Tomorrow Community Plan, they have followed this sage advice. Not only has the future been enabled, so has each and every citizen of this community.

David Haynes is President of the Terre Haute Chamber of Commerce.


From the Terre Haute Tribune-Star
Posted: Saturday, February 7, 2015
By: David Haynes
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