October 23, 2019
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In A Word

Innovation: We asked community advocates to share their thoughts on one word

Abby Elpers

“Innovation is one of those widely used nebulous terms that likely means something different to everyone. Fortunately, my profession offers a first-class seat to witnessing innovation at work in our community, among organizations, startup companies, and individuals at Innovation Pointe. After years of observation — and some participation — I believe innovation stems from three Cs: creativity, collaboration, and openness to change.

When imaginative (creative) individuals connect (collaborate) in a supportive environment to better a product, service, or business through the development of new ideas (change)— innovation is bound to happen. And it does.

If you’re like me, you may need a quick reminder from economist, John Maynard Keynes, ‘The difficulty lies not so much in developing new ideas as in escaping from old ones.’ Embrace change. Collaborate with others. Think creatively. Innovate!”

Elpers is the marketing communications manager for the Growth Alliance for Greater Evansville.


Greg Hebbeler II

“Innovation to me, being in the IBEW Local Union 16, means I’ve watched and worked on — from Louisville, Kentucky, to San Francisco, California — new technologies that have taken us from coal burning power to sun (different types of solar), wind, and hydro generation that will benefit our planet and children.

When I hear innovation, it means state-of-the-art technology, like super low emissions coal to the diesel plant coming to southern Indiana. Being in the electrical field, I’m sure I see innovations differently than most. I see the ever-evolving technologies in the field, to make production and environments better, where someone else may just see the latest iPhone. I see innovations in the car plants I’ve worked in to design better and lighter cars while helping protect workers and boosting production, while someone else sees a sleek new body design coming off the line.

As a kid, you never think of innovations, just that cool new stuff came out. Now as an adult, it is really impressive to see how the innovations have helped our societies.”

Hebbeler is the president of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, Local Union 16.

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