“It takes a long time to exact change. But when it is accomplished, it feels so rewarding.”
This is what Tim Bietry had to say about serving his community. A current Michigan City councilman at-large and board member of the Economic Development Corporation of Michigan City (EDCMC) for over ten years, Bietry has made strong contributions to the Michigan City community. He was appointed to the EDCMC as the representative for city council, mainly in workforce development. He has decided not to run again for city council, so he will exit on January 1st, 2020.
“It’s all a team effort,” said Bietry. “We are united by our sense of service for the community. But in order to accomplish our goals, it takes a level of dedication and commitment.”
The Economic Development Corporation of Michigan City is the product of an initiative to build upon the City’s many and diverse economic assets. Its mission is to develop and implement seamless policies, procedures, and programs for economic and community development that drive systemic and long-term viability through collaboration and consensus with stakeholders and community resources.
“Sometimes change is glacial. It seems like the bigger the change, the slower the process is,” said Bietry. “Whoever said ‘patience is a virtue’ was dead-on.”
Bietry has worked extensively on economic development within Michigan City, with one of his most notable projects being Artspace: a mixed-use project with 44 affordable live, work units for artists and their families with ground-floor studio and commercial space located in the Uptown Arts District. This project was a renovation of the Warren Building, which dated back to 1927.
“Since this was basically my project from day one, when it was finished I was tremendously relieved. It was a dream come true to get that done, and I couldn’t have done it without the help of so many talented people,” he said.
Bietry also taught government, psychology, and sociology for about six years before becoming a high school principal for Michigan City High School for 22 years. This career kick-started his interest in serving others and working to make communities better places.
“As an educator, I served the children of my school. As a councilmember and a member of the EDCMC Board, I served the city and its prosperity. In my line of work, you have to have that commitment to service and a devotion to the community, rather than your own self-interest.”