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U.C.D.C. welcomes new member

By Elisabeth Dodd, Staff Writer

The Union County Development Corporation has a new member so the corporation can work double time in its role behind the scenes endeavoring to expand and enrich Indiana's second smallest county.

From Angola, Dawnn Ripberger moved to Richmond after college in 2003 and moved to Liberty where she has lived for five years now with her husband.

She brings an impressive resume with her and plenty of experience in her work at the Center City Development Corp in Richmond for two-and-a-half years, event and wedding planning for fourth floor blues Club for five or six years, and planning the meltdown Winter Ice Festival in Richmond, which brings world class ice carvers from all over for intense competitions and elaborate displays for everyone to enjoy and get through the last leg of winter. Finally, she planned the downtown Richmond Holiday Parade for the past 6 years.

Her arrival means that the director, Melissa Browning, has more time to secure grants for the county, and each huge event has twice the manpower behind it. Ripberger also brings her connections in Wayne County, which is a new market to bring vendors, participants and donors to Union County.

“She's a perfect fit. It has been wonderful to have someone else,” said Browning.

Her official title is Assistant to the Director and her first day was Nov. 14. The first phase of her employment has been spent out of office on the road collecting donations and generating interest for Christmas in our Hometown. Now she's looking on the horizon towards the annual Duck Regatta to fundraise for town beautification luxuries like flowerpots.

Ripberger understands the needs of local businesses because she is one. For the last six years, she's run a screenprinting, embroidery, and vinyl business called Transparent Turtle Graphics.

“I'm a very good organizer so it helps out in the office and when I'm out and about getting donations,” said Ripberger.

With such a new position, the possibilities of where it could go and what it means for Union County are endless.