Current News

Current News

5th Annual NIPSCO Luminary Awards Light Up Northern Indiana

Thursday, October 06, 2016

Northern Indiana Public Service Company (NIPSCO) recently announced the recipients of the company’s fifth annual Luminary Awards, which recognize leaders and organizations for their outstanding commitment to strengthening local communities.


Created in 2012 in celebration of the utility’s 100-year anniversary, the Luminary Awards honor individuals or organizations that have displayed leadership in four areas. The 2016 recipients are:


  • Community Leadership – Barb Young, President and CEO Porter County Community Foundation
  • Economic Development – Jim Staton, Regional Director Indiana Economic Development Corporation (IEDC)
  • Education – Chancellor Thomas Keon, Purdue University Northwest
  • Environmental Stewardship – Shirley Heinze Land Trust


NIPSCO also made a $1,000 contribution to each award winner’s charity of choice. Winners were announced in conjunction with a community reception.


Information about the 2016 Luminary winners:


Barb Young – Community Leadership Award 
Barb will be retiring at the end of 2016 after 20 years with the Porter County Community Foundation and eighteen as its president. She leaves with a legacy of unparalleled leadership. A staunch proponent of community philanthropy as a means to improve quality of life, she has been deeply involved in a variety of initiatives to address important issues that span all elements of the community.

Jim Staton – Economic Development Award
Jim Staton has had a long affiliation with economic development in northwest Indiana including success as the Jasper County LEDO to promote development in the county, continued commitment to bringing jobs and investment to northwest Indiana and demonstrated ability to bring together key stakeholders and resources to help land major new industries and investment in northwest Indiana (i.e. Pratt Industries, Hoist Lift, etc.).


Chancellor Thomas Keon – Education Award
Chancellor Thomas Keon with Purdue University Northwest is being proposed for the Luminary Award for Education due to the school’s initiatives to take STEM education efforts out of the classroom and into the community to support private business initiatives, including some at NIPSCO, while preparing students for job opportunities with area businesses. These initiatives include the Center for Innovation through Visualization and Simulation (CIVS), Energy Center for Business and Economic Development Solutions and the Commercialization and Manufacturing Excellence Center.

Shirley Heinze Land Trust – Environmental Stewardship Award
Shirley Heinze Land Trust has been protecting natural land in Northwest Indiana and NIPSCO’s service area since 1981.  It manages more than 1,900 acres in Lake, Porter, and La Porte Counties and is further expanding the area it serves in Northern Indiana. This year they acquired an additional 400 acres of permanently protected land, and are working on the restoration of another 250 acres. Shirley Heinze has also partnered with NIPSCO and other industries, corporations, organizations, businesses, donors, and volunteers to achieve mutually beneficial goals.



Kathleen Szot, Communications