A great account of a bold attempt to reinvent a downtown by a small town that refuses to accept decline as inevitable.
– Aaron Renn, Independent Journalist and Consultant
The Restoration of Van Wert, Ohio: How Local Leaders Flipped the Script on Downtown Decline is a must read! Engaging, exciting, and energizing, the book tells, step-by-step, how one city is renewing its downtown. The authors know what they are talking about. Eric Doden worked miracles in Fort Wayne, Indiana, as Chris Mead described in Turning Rust to Gold: Fort Wayne’s Fight for Revival. After reading that book I was inspired to help fight for a downtown baseball stadium and multi-use event facility in Hagerstown, Maryland. We recently received $69.5 million to build the facility! Now we are taking a fresh look at the rest of our downtown…
– Paul Frey, President and CEO, Washington County Chamber of Commerce
The restoration of Van Wert, Ohio is a great model for other small and rural communities across the nation. Each town or city has a unique history that is important in setting the stage for leaders during difficult times. It cant be overemphasized how the far-seeing leaders of Van Wert, through the establishment of the Van Wert County Foundation, made possible todays giant leap to create a thriving community.
– Scott Niswonger, Air/Land Transport Pioneer and Philanthropist
A lively and inspiring narrative of the challenging work to rebuild downtown Van Wert, Ohio. This is a must read for any civic leader or elected official who believes their city challenges are impossibly unique. This is a story of how a determined number of citizens revived a city, breathing in new life and optimism for the 21st century.
– Michael J. Hicks, Ph. D. , George & Frances Ball Distinguished Professor, Miller School of Business, Ball State University