ValpoNEXT Coordinator Kathy Sipple speaks with Eric Zosso, ValpoNEXT President and leader of the Economic Vitality Community Action Committee. They discuss current plans by the Economic Vitality group to work with the City and install a fiber network. Zosso also brings up potential resources to tap-into in the future. He talks about the Valparaiso Creative Council, headed by Nicole Upton. Maggie Clifton’s role as the connection between ValpoNEXT and the City of Valparaiso is explained in further detail. Sipple and Zosso “call out” active members of the Economic Vitality community board for their valuable volunteering, and they discuss avenues for interested parties to get involved with ValpoNEXT activities.
- Eric Zosso is the president of ValpoNEXT and also leads the Economic Vitality community board. He also owns a co-working space downtown called Zoseco Coworking.
- First initiative, based on public desire, is to facilitate new downtown housing.
- Want to manage fiber network development: the city is actively pursuing this avenue.
- Possibly develop a meeting and conference center to encourage events that play a part in both tourism and in our business strengths.
- Creating airport support services (future plans).
- Promoting green practices with sustainable development in our future.
- Nicole Upton serves as the President of the Board for the Valparaiso Creative Council, connected to initiatives originally outlined in the ValpoNEXT Vision Plan under Culture and Recreation.
- Maggie Clifton is the director of Community Engagement for the City of Valparaiso.
- The Human Relations Council established this position to promote a deliberate effort in the realm of community engagement.
- As ValpoNEXT is not a city institution, Maggie Clifton can serve as a point person to connect passionate citizens with the City of Valparaiso.
- Active participants
- Spencer Skinner is a board member for ValpoNEXT who works in Chicago in the housing sector.
- Isaac Carr is the CEO of CCSK Law in town. He is dedicated, structure, organized, and has been recently added to the board of ValpoNEXT.
- Bill Herring works with SCORE to give no-cost business advice to local startups.
- Always looking for new diverse members to attend meetings to contribute opinions, knowledge, and passion.
- The Equity and Inclusion group is tackling affordable shelter and seeing how it relates to our city as a whole.
- Hosted a summit in May to get all five groups together with members of the community.