Honored and excited, I drove to Mitchell, IN last month to deliver the John Niederman Rural Leadership Award to David Miller, CEO of Hoosier Uplands, a Community Action Agency, Area Agency on Aging, licensed Home Health Care and Hospice agency, and Community Housing Development Organization serving Crawford, Lawrence, Martin, Orange and Washington Counties. David was unable to attend our 2019 Summit where we officially recognized our annual awardees, so delivery of his award was a good excuse and opportunity to learn more about one of our members. New to Prosperity Indiana and the community development industry, I was about to meet the man that John Niederman himself described at the Awards Luncheon by saying “this award could just as easily be named the David Miller Award.”
Located in the heart of Mitchell, I met David at the Hoosier Uplands office. We drove to lunch and then stopped by the Mitchell Opera House, which Hoosier Uplands restored, and then visited Serenity Now, a mental health clinic that Hoosier Uplands operates in Bedford, Ind. I learned the history, saw patients in the waiting rooms, and met the staff. And I was moved. For three hours, David and I talked about community development, life, challenges, commitment, and action, and I left that day changed for the better.
It became clear to me that day that Hoosier Uplands leads the community with integrity, high expectations, and a call to action. Their mission statement reads in part “All endeavors are pursued with the client in mind, never forgetting the value of every human being or the importance of our responsibility to the public which we serve.” And it’s obvious they do just that.
I am incredibly proud to work for Prosperity Indiana and want to learn more. This year, I am visiting member organizations every month and highlighting my experiences in this newsletter. Please let me know if you are interested (email@example.com), and I’ll get it on the calendar!
P.S. John Niederman… you were right!