Recently, two new staff members joined the Office of Community and Rural Affairs as community liaisons, who grow and maintain working relationships with a variety of local, regional, state and federal leaders. They educate and promote the agency's menu of programs and provide technical assistance to communities in the engagement of these programs. They also identify, link and convene local and regional groups with common missions and interests dedicated to community and economic development.

One of them, Christian Chamberlain, is the east central community liaison. This region covers 15 counties, including Franklin.

Chamberlain joined OCRA after serving as special assistant to Lt. Gov. Suzanne Crouch. Prior to joining state government, he worked as a BMW/Porsche service consultant and a BMW Genius. For two years, he helped train staff, assisted clients and led his sales team to become the highest grossing team out of five German brands.

"I'm excited to build upon my experience working with Lt. Gov. Suzanne Crouch and be able to work directly with communities to help them achieve the goals they wish to accomplish," said Chamberlain. "Being able to take the relationships I've built and expand them further in my region is exhilarating."

Originally from Evansville, he studied political science at the University of Southern Indiana. He became active in local political campaigns, applying the skills and training he received at USI. To give back to his community, he volunteered countless hours for Keep Evansville Beautiful and his local church. As a big motorsports fan, he chose Speedway as his home to be near the famous Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

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