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CICP adds new focus on regional workforce development, aligning Central Indiana employers' needs with strategy

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (June 15, 2015) - The Central Indiana Corporate Partnership (CICP) is adding a new focus to regional efforts to advance growth and prosperity. A new cross-sector, industry-led initiative will offer a coherent, inclusive and unifying workforce development strategy that aligns with employers' needs, coordinates with educators, and fills workforce gaps. This new regional program will work with CICP's existing statewide sector initiatives AgriNovus Indiana, BioCrossroads, Conexus Indiana, Energy Systems Network and TechPoint, and will be led by Jason Kloth, who is leaving his position of Indianapolis Deputy Mayor for Education effective June 19.

"Central Indiana's economic growth depends on having a skilled talent base for our local employers, and it's critical that we are both finding and filling gaps today and preparing for tomorrow's even greater needs for appropriately prepared talent to drive the regional economy. Conexus Indiana and TechPoint are making a huge impact, bridging some of the gaps in the technology, advanced manufacturing and logistics sectors, but through many discussions with our corporate members, we know that an additional focus across a wider expanse of both industries and skill levels here in Central Indiana is imperative for our region to move forward," David Johnson, president and CEO, Central Indiana Corporate Partnership said. "Jason's background, passion, and innovative thinking make him uniquely qualified to lead this important new collaborative effort."

According to a Brookings Institution study on 21st Century advanced industries released earlier this year, Central Indiana is a nationally competitive center for regional growth and innovation in the areas of the life sciences and aircraft and motor vehicle parts manufacturing as well as in the service areas of computer systems design, architecture and engineering, and management, scientific, and technical consulting. However, for these and other key sectors of activity to continue to grow and contribute to the region's economic success, a series of talent-related challenges and opportunities need to be appropriately understood and effectively addressed. The new CICP initiative will promote a coordinated approach with both academia (higher education and training programs) and industry as well as related efforts by State government—the Career Council and the Region 5 Works Council—and other key regional organizations, including the Indy Chamber, the United Way, the Central Indiana Community Foundation, and Employ Indy, among others to ensure a continuum of educational and training opportunities for the support of these sectors.

Kloth has led the City of Indianapolis Office of Education Innovation (OEI) since 2012. During that time, the OEI increased the number of charter schools in its portfolio from 22 to 38 and helped author and negotiate an ambitious $50 million proposal to fund pre-school for thousands of low-income children, as well as drafted groundbreaking legislation that enables traditional public school districts to partner with outside organizations to improve failing schools.

"Jason's work in leading our Office of Education Innovation has changed the education landscape in Indianapolis and helped create opportunities for thousands of our youngest citizens," Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard said. "From pre-K to high school, we have a generation of students who are now better prepared to create bright, successful futures for themselves, much to the credit of Jason and his team."

Before joining the Mayor's office, Kloth held a variety of senior positions at Teach For America. He most recently served as the organization's senior vice president of Public Affairs and served as the founding executive director of Teach For America Indianapolis. Kloth began his career teaching 6th grade language arts in the Rio Grande Valley of Texas, where his peers elected him Teacher of the Year. He was named one of the Walton Family Foundation's inaugural "Education Reformers to Watch" in 2013, and in 2014 he was selected as a Pahara-Aspen Institute Education Fellow. Kloth currently serves on the boards of Early Learning Indiana, Teach For America-Indianapolis, Downtown Indy, and Employ Indy. He earned a B.A. from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

"It has been an honor to serve as Deputy Mayor these past three years and I am appreciative of Mayor Ballard's leadership," Kloth said. "During my tenure, I developed a deeper understanding of the challenges our community faces. At the forefront of these challenges is the need to ensure we have an adequately prepared workforce that meets employers' needs and strengthens our economy. CICP, as the representative of our regions' largest employers, is uniquely positioned to address this need. I look forward to partnering with business, education, and civic leaders to bring additional focus to this vital issue and make measurable progress filling gaps in our workforce."

About Central Indiana Corporate Partnership (CICP)

The Central Indiana Corporate Partnership (CICP) was formed in 1999 to bring together the chief executives of Central Indiana's prominent corporations, foundations and university presidents in a strategic and collaborative effort dedicated to the region's continued prosperity and growth. To advance this mission, CICP sponsors five key economic development initiatives, AgriNovus Indiana, BioCrossroads, Conexus Indiana, Energy Systems Network and TechPoint, each of which addresses challenges and opportunities unique to its respective sector: agriculture innovation, life sciences, advanced manufacturing and logistics, energy technology and information technology. To learn more about CICP, visit www.cicpindiana.com.

About Ascend Indiana

Ascend Indiana exists to give every Indiana employer access to the skilled workforce necessary to thrive, and every Indiana citizen the opportunity to pursue a meaningful career path. Ascend Indiana is a catalyst across industry sectors to help connect the supply of skilled talent to demand from employers through proven, scalable programs and innovative solutions. The organization collaborates with corporate, education, and community partners to identify and address challenges within the talent pipeline. To learn more visit, www.ascendindiana.com.

Media Inquiries

Kate Broshears
Director of Development and Communications
(317) 532-4786
kate.broshears@ascendindiana.com


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