Our Impact

Foward Wayne County Coalitions

Forward Wayne County has three active coalitions: Employability, Early Childhood Success, and Main Street. All are working collectively to help us achieve our key goals. We also support numerous affiliate groups throughout the county.

Early Childhood Success
Main Street Coalition

Current Projects and Initiatives:

  • Our People Projects:
    • Workforce Development Initiatives that will bring awareness to careers and help us move the needle on educational attainment.
      • Partnering in the regional Birth to Five Coalition on child care initiatives.
      • Serving as the Regional Activity Support Chair with the regional Birth to Five Coalition.
      • Partnering with employers for internship education.
    • Strategic Partnerships to align and progress our Big Indicator goals.
        • Supporting Good Wages Initiatives in Wayne County.
  • Our Community Projects
    • Main Street Coalition: Assisting Wayne County’s Main Street organizations and convening monthly coalition meetings. Completed Main Street structural feasibility study in partnership with Main Street Coalition.
    • HELP Program: Partner with local government, towns, cities, and key stakeholders on funding county-wide, high-impact projects
    • Serve on the Steering Committee for East Central Indiana’s READI 2.0 plan.
    • Compiling the Lilly GIFT VIII concept paper.
    • Act as the lead applicant for Stellar Pathways.

Measuring Our Success

In order for us to foster a vibrant economy and promote prosperity, Forward Wayne County is focused on measuring our impact.  Our Coalitions, current projects, strategic partnerships, and successes will significantly impact Wayne County’s goals and Big Indicators of Success by 2025. See what we are doing throughout Wayne County.

Big Indicators of Success

Our Goal is to attract, develop, and retain a highly competitive workforce to meet the current and future needs of our area’s business and industries. We track this progress in the following areas:


GOAL: Achieve a population of 66,101 for a year-over-year increase of .05% for 5 years.

icon population

Like many rural counties, Wayne County’s population is declining. Retirees are moving, college students are not returning, and individuals seek higher-wage jobs in larger communities. We want to reverse this trend.

We are dedicated to improving the quality of life for our current and future residents by:

  • Creating projects and programs that make Wayne County a great place to live, work, and play
  • Focusing on enhancing our county’s neighborhoods, cities, and towns
  • Supporting our environment through recycling, physical amenities, and alternative transportation
  • Continuing to incorporate arts and culture into the everyday lives of our residents


GOAL: Increase to 60% of the population age 25-64, holding certifications, associate’s degree, or higher.

icon certification

We believe its’ never too late to get an education. Sometimes it starts with a certification. And these count toward the State of Indiana’s goal of 60% of the population having a certification or higher.


GOAL: Increase to 35% of the population, ages 25-64, holding associates degree or higher.

icon college

We believe connecting educational attainment goals to even our youngest population is key to increasing the statistic over the coming decades.

We will work to increase our county’s credential attainment by:

  • Promoting education and partnering on short-term credentials, associate degrees, and more
  • Developing career pathways within education systems and employers
  • Supporting talent pipelines, talent networks, as well as career and job fairs
  • Connecting students with employers for internships, work-based learning opportunities, and other experimental learning
  • Increasing Pre-K programs and increasing educational success from Pre-K to career attainment


GOAL: Raise Per Capita Personal Income and Median Family Income to be equal to the state average.

icon income

Increasing in per capita personal income helps our residents with economic mobility. Wayne County still lags behind the rest of the State/US average. We want to be equal to the rest of the State.

Forward Wayne County’s strategy for improving the Per Capita Personal Income and Median Family Income is to:

  • Support better employment options and wages for residents
  • Support training and education that will lead to promotions and increases in wages


GOAL: Decrease the percentage of residents living in poverty to be at or below the state average.

icon poverty

Wayne County has seen a steady decline in the percent of people living in poverty. This can be attributed to many things, low unemployment rates, increasing wages, increasing jobs, etc. However, we still lag behind the State and United percent.

Forward Wayne County’s strategy for improving the Poverty Level and Per Capita Personal Income is to:

  • Support better employment options and wages for residents
  • Improve workforce retention as well as Early Childhood Success through increased affordable high-quality childcare and additional childcare options
  • Promote Health and Wellness Efforts


GOAL: Increase gross assessed value annually at a rate at or above the state average

  • Wayne County experienced 1% growth in Gross AV from 2019-2020, as compared to the State average of 3.0%.
  • Wayne County has steadily increased Gross AV since 2012, with a slight dip between 2015-2016.



  • Early Childhood Success
  • Health and Wellness
  • Educational Attainment
  • Employability


  • Neighborhood Development
  • Environment
  • Government and Policy
  • Arts and Culture

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This