Hickman sees connection between Chamber, new entrepreneurship group, and county’s success

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Becky Hickman was recently named as the new general manager of the Dubois County Chamber, but she also heads another group of companies in Dubois County.

She is the first female executive director of EinDC (Education and Entrepreneurship of Dubois County), a group founded in 2016 to examine grassroots efforts to create an entrepreneurial ecosystem in Dubois County.

ADC was launched as an initiative of Brenda Stallings, CEO of Matrix Integration and Co-Founder / President of Current Blend – Dubois County’s first co-working space. She recognized the need for a strong leadership group that would not only invest in entrepreneurship but also have an interest in the long-term sustainability of our communities, their workforce, and the impact of the workforce on the local economy.

A group that banded together around the initiative, and in 2018 EinDC became a nonprofit with the goal of promoting future growth and prosperity for everyone in Dubois County. It does this by prioritizing lifelong learning, expanding competency-based training and higher education opportunities in the county to create a pipeline of talent, a culture of continuous learning and an entrepreneurial mindset for future generations.

Hickman was with EinDC last year, starting February 1 as a part-time director.

“Becky’s energy and enthusiasm for linking education to economic growth will support the stability of our community going forward,” said Stallings, chairman of the board. “Your organizational and collaborative skills are critical to moving our mission forward. Her commitment to the Talent Region of the 21st Century, an initiative of Indiana’s Career Connections and Talent, is also very closely tied to EinDC’s goals. “

Hickman is passionate about participating in initiatives and working with groups focused on community improvement that has grown through her years of service at Kimball and the German American Bank.

She spent 11 years with Kimball. “That was where I really learned how to solve creative problems,” said Hickman. “And many other moderation skills.”

While at GAB, Hickman said she could really improve these skills. In addition, GAB is committed to not only supporting the community financially, but also encouraging employees to engage with their time and talents.

“I’ve always been involved in the community,” said Hickman. “I just have the feeling that if I live and work here, I want the community to be a better community tomorrow than it is today. And I can only do that if I am committed. “

Through her role as a volunteer at events like the street festival, as a board member for the Tri-County YMCA, and with her talents to help found and facilitate planning sessions for the Women Empowering Women initiative.

Last July, Hickman made the difficult decision to leave German American Bank, where she served as Director of Learning and Development, to found Becky Hickman and Associates. Your goal is to help make it easier

She was then asked to submit her resume for work to the Dubois County Chamber of Commerce. When they offered her the position as director – a part-time position – she felt that the organization she was starting up could help make a difference in the community and accepted the offer.

She sees her work with the Dubois County Chamber and EinDC as a great crossover.

“Working with the EinDC board is a perfect fit for the Dubois County Chamber as this is a county initiative. Both organizations will create connections that will strengthen my role in every capacity and bring individuals, organizations and the community together to create positive change, ”said Hickman.

One of their first EinDC initiatives is to create a database of community improvement initiatives and groups – a map of the local ecosystem.

“Brenda Stallings and I attended training focused on a community stakeholder engagement process with the Columbus Coalition in Columbus, Indiana,” said Hickman. “This process brings together the community, the entire county, stakeholders like schools, colleges, business development groups like Dubois Strong, and local businesses to leverage this systematic process, which is vital to our community, to connect education with our economic needs long-term. ”

Through this ecosystem map, Hickman hopes it will be able to identify gaps in coverage and facilitate efforts to fill those gaps. Finding these gaps is important in laying a foundation to support the Dubois County’s entrepreneurship and education efforts.

The EinDC Board consists of the following people: Becky Hickman (Director), Brenda Stallings, CEO, Matrix Integration (President), Mark Schroeder, Chairman and CEO of German American Bank (Treasurer), Eric Schue, Attorney and Partner at Dentons (Secretary )), Mayor Dean Vonderheide von Jasper, Denny Spinner, Executive Director, Bureau of Community and Rural Affairs (OCRA), Ryan Menke, Senior Vice President, Sales and Marketing of OFS Brands, Mayor Steve Schwinghamer von Huntingburg, Tim Lagrange, Superintendent of Southwest Dubois School Corporation and Elmer Brames, retired educator, current Dubois County Commissioner and Secretary of the Indiana Association of County Commissioners.