Tiffin

City of Tiffin launches housing survey

Study enters next phase as city faces housing shortage

TIFFIN, OHIO – March 19, 2019 – The City of Tiffin and the Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership announce today that they have officially opened an online housing survey to determine the market demand for housing. The survey is part of a City-funded study to determine what kind of housing is most needed and to attract developers to create that product. The survey can be found at tiffinsurvey.com and is expected to be open for until the end of April.

Understanding from local realtors and newcomers to the community that the housing supply has not been able to meet the current demand, the Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership convened a committee of local realtors, builders, mortgage lenders, city council and administration members and plans were put together to interview multiple research firms. Dublin, Ohio-based DiSalvo Development Advisors was selected and hired at the end of last year.

The first phase of the study has unofficially revealed that there are about 60 homes for sale in the Tiffin market, and a recent apartment survey of 19 projects and more than 800 units showed there were just 3 vacancies. That is a 0.4 percent vacancy rate, compared to a healthy market which is considered 5 percent vacancy. The survey is the next step in the study process. It will be marketed to the general public, and TSEP will be working with local employers to distribute to their employees.

Tiffin Mayor Aaron Montz said he welcomes the findings that the survey may bring. “My office regularly gets requests about housing needs within the city. We hope that the information gathered from this study can be used to sell Tiffin to developers for commercial projects and new housing opportunities. It’s a key part of our overall community and economic development strategy.”

Questions in the survey range from the types of home people are interested, prices and locations within the Tiffin area they would be interested in relocating to. In addition, there are questions related to the types of businesses that people would like to see in Tiffin.

About the Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership

Started in 1983 as the Seneca Industrial and Economic Development Corp. (SIEDC), the Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership is a private, non-profit corporation dedicated to driving positive economic, downtown, and community development in Tiffin and Seneca County, Ohio, which consistently ranks among the top communities nationally for economic development. Learn more about the great things going on in Tiffin and Seneca County at www.tiffinseneca.org.

Seneca County ranks 14th nationally for economic development

Community ranked in top 20 for seven years

TIFFIN, OHIO – MARCH 4, 2019 – Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership and the Fostoria Economic Development Corp. announced today that Seneca County has placed No. 14 nationally in Site Selection magazine’s rankings for large, private economic development projects out of the 576 micropolitans in the US for the honor. Site Selection has been annually ranking states and cities since 1978.

This is the seventh year in a row that the Tiffin-Seneca micropolitan area has ranked in the top 100 nationally; last year Seneca County was ranked No. 10. Qualifying projects must involve a capital investment of at least $1 million, create at least 20 new jobs or add at least 20,000 sq. ft. of new floor area.

Tiffin Mayor Aaron Montz was very pleased with the result. “This national ranking shows that Tiffin continues to be a great place for business to locate and grow. We are proud to be recognized again by Site Selection Magazine.” Fostoria Mayor Eric Keckler agreed, “I’m proud that Fostoria and Seneca County continue to be a great place to do business.” Seneca County Commission President Shayne Thomas added: “I’m happy to see Seneca County place nationally for business development. I want to thank everyone involved in our shared success.”

This year, Ohio ranked as the number two state for development projects and the entire Northwest Ohio region posted strong numbers, with Findlay taking the number one micropolitan slot, Defiance taking the eight spot, Fremont-Sandusky placing 19, and Toledo ranking third in its metropolitan division.

“There are (576) micropolitians in the United states of America. … Of the 18 communities (in Ohio) that ranked on the list, five were right here in Northwest Ohio. This is a feat that few other regions in the country can match,” said Dean Monske, President & CEO of RGP Northwest Ohio in Toledo, the regional economic development organization for Northwest Ohio.

More information can be found at siteselection.com.

About the Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership

Started in 1983 as the Seneca Industrial and Economic Development Corp. (SIEDC), the Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership is a private, non-profit corporation dedicated to driving positive economic, downtown, and community development in Tiffin and Seneca County, Ohio, which consistently ranks among the top communities nationally for economic development. Learn more about the great things going on in Tiffin and Seneca County at www.tiffinseneca.com.

About the Fostoria Economic Development Corporation

Established in 1956 as the Fostoria Community Industrial Association, the Fostoria Economic Development Corporation (FEDC) is a private, non-profit corporation dedicated to driving positive economic, downtown, and community development in Fostoria and surrounding area in Hancock, Wood, and Seneca Counties, which consistently rank among the top counties nationally for economic development. Learn more about the great things going on in Fostoria at www.fostoriaedc.org.

Taylor Elchert Photography returning to downtown Tiffin

New storefront location to open in April

TIFFIN, OHIO – February 22, 2019 – Taylor Elchert, owner of Taylor Elchert Photography, has announced plans to move her business to downtown Tiffin in April. Having been in the downtown previously, Elchert said she was excited to get the opportunity to move her business, to be located at 184 Washington St., after the location was suggested to her by Washington Street Outfitters co-owner Zoe Dolch.

“I’m so excited about it. I actually graduated with Zoe, the owner of WSO, so it’s cool our businesses will be right next to each other,” Elchert said. “I love having the storefront. It’s so perfect with the city parking lot being right there.”

Elchert is a family photographer and specializes in maternity and newborn portraits. She has been in business for 11 years, and most recently was located on Melmore Street. Her work has been featured in The Huffington Post, Ever Illuminated and Lemonade & Lenses, where she also received an award. She has been named one of the most inspiring and talented child photographers by the Child Photo Competition Team and had articles written about her in Tiffin Life magazine and Findlay Life magazine.

In moving downtown, Elchert joins Melissa Perry Photography, The Poignon Project, Tiffin Art Guild, Court Street Gallery, Hawkes Crystal, Red Raven Tattoo & Art Gallery and other businesses in the arts community in Tiffin

“I’ve been thinking about moving to the downtown for a while now,” Elchert said.

Tiffin Mayor Aaron Montz said he was glad to see Elchert return to the downtown. “It is great to see so many entrepreneurs wanting to bring their businesses to the heart of Tiffin.”

For more information or to set up an appointment, call Elchert at (567) 230-3880 or visit taylorelchertphotography.com.

About the Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership

Started in 1983 as the Seneca Industrial and Economic Development Corp. (SIEDC), the Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership is a private, non-profit corporation dedicated to driving positive economic, downtown, and community development in Tiffin and Seneca County, Ohio, which consistently ranks among the top communities nationally for economic development. Learn more about the great things going on in Tiffin and Seneca County at http://www.tiffinseneca.com.

Downtown gains new art gallery

Renovation of downtown property aided by $10,000 in grants

TIFFIN, OHIO – January 30, 2019 – Modern artist Tom Hoffman has announced plans to open a new art gallery, Court Street Gallery, showcasing his work and that of other artists at 33 Court Street in downtown Tiffin’s historic district. Hoffman previously had a gallery in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and is excited to offer his gallery vision to residents of Seneca County and Northwest Ohio.

“I wanted a place to showcase my art and show other artists eventually,” Hoffman said. “I love Tiffin and think it’s a really great town; it’s blossoming, and I want to be part of that,” he added.

Hoffman has a degree in architecture from the University of Illinois and was first an interior designer with a thriving business and a move to Tiffin prompted him to put his art to the forefront. Hoffman is to use part of the renovated storefront for a gallery space and art studio, and he is to live in one of the upper apartments.

Andy Faber, partner with building owners Tiffin Capital Investments LLC, purchased the building in March 2017, said the renovation was a new experience for the group and thanked Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership and guidance from other property owners and their bank as they updated the storefront and five apartments.

“The four of us just did this. We’re four buddies who started this over a beer. We looked at other properties and this one made the most sense,” Faber said. “We’ve really resurrected a building down there. It’s crazy to look back, seeing people living there and making it a home is absolutely awesome.”

In 2016, the previous owner received a $10,000 Façade Enhancement Grant that was used for repairs to slate, masonry, windows, cornices, roof, and dormers, as well as painting. In August 2018, Faber and his associates started the process on the Community Reinvestment Area (CRA) for tax abatement, which is awaiting approval upon completion of renovations.

Tiffin Mayor Aaron Montz said he is excited about the project. “It is great that the city of Tiffin will have another attraction in its downtown, and we are pleased to see that a historic building has been brought back to life by members of our community.”

The Diane Kidd Gallery on the campus of Tiffin University will host “Evolving,” an exhibition of abstract paintings by Hoffman through February 21, 2019.

About the Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership

Started in 1983 as the Seneca Industrial and Economic Development Corp. (SIEDC), the Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership is a private, non-profit corporation dedicated to driving positive economic, downtown, and community development in Tiffin and Seneca County, Ohio, which consistently ranks among the top communities nationally for economic development. Learn more about the great things going on in Tiffin and Seneca County at www.tiffinseneca.com.

2019 small business seminar schedule set

2014_03_24 - BillAuxter

Small Business Development Center Director Bill Auxter

Bill Auxter, Director of the Ohio Small Business Development Center at Terra State Community College, hosts a free, monthly Small Business Basics seminar at the Seneca Regional Chamber of Commerce and Visitor Services. On average, Bill works with more than 150 small businesses each year, which includes pre-ventures, start-ups, and existing businesses.

The Business Basics seminar is a two-hour session designed to answer questions about starting, buying or expanding a small business. Participants are walked through the basics of name registration, licensing, taxes, advisors, business entities, employees, insurance, financing, business planning and more.

The seminars take place at the Seneca Regional Chamber and Visitor Services’ Community Room from 9:30 – 11:30 a.m. on the following 2019 dates:

  • January 9
  • February 13
  • March 13
  • April 10
  • May 8
  • June 12
  • August 14
  • September 11
  • October 9
  • November 13

To register, contact Bill Auxter at 419.559.2210 or bauxter@terra.edu. Click here for more general information.

Heidelberg Announces USDA Rural Development Loan

Press release provided by Heidelberg University.

Heidelberg University LogoTIFFIN – Heidelberg University is proud to announce the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has awarded a $36.5 million low-interest Rural Development loan to support a variety of campus initiatives directed at improving the student experience. The loan is designed to refinance existing debt to better position Heidelberg for long-term economic expansion and improve student housing, student learning facilities and student recruitment operations. Construction will begin soon on the restoration and renovation of historic France Residence Hall to integrate a living and learning community for approximately 70 female students and faculty. Several classroom spaces will also be improved to support new and existing academic programs.

President Rob Huntington states the USDA award is critical for success, “This loan assists our effort to make Heidelberg more financially stable, address student learning needs and greatly enhance student living and engaging spaces.” He adds, “Nearly $20 million dollars will be invested to drive our Academic Strategic Plan, support a living and learning community and create a unique greeting for the Office of Admission that will set the tone for an exceptional and persuasive visit experience for prospective students and their families. We are tremendously grateful to all elected officials in the city of Tiffin and Seneca County who continue to help us process this USDA loan. The loan helps us to restructure our debt and to renovate living and learning spaces on campus to better position Heidelberg in the very competitive higher education marketplace.”

The addition and upgrades to over 300 residential units is a major element in Heidelberg’s Residential Living Plan Vision. Chris Abrams, Dean of Student Affairs, states, “New student townhouse apartments will offer housing options and lifestyle flexibility for upper-class students. The improvements to France Hall and Miller Hall will provide students with modern amenities to help integrate living and learning opportunities.”

The Student & Community Welcome Center will create a “front door” at the East Market Street entrance to the campus. This 10,000-square-foot, two-story facility will house the Office of Admission and become home for the new Town Gown Bookstore. As part of Heidelberg’s Strategic Action Plan, which focuses on transformation, improvement and growth, the University aspires to not only maintain the current undergraduate population but to grow beyond it. The new bookstore will be open and inviting to the entire Tiffin community. Simultaneously, Heidelberg will move the Owen Academic and Career Support Center to the location of the current bookstore to create a larger and more accessible space to support student success.

Kathy Geier, Heidelberg University’s Board Chair agrees, “As Heidelberg University continues to grow, this loan positions us to provide quality facilities and programs for students and faculty. Refinancing, with a better interest rate on our debt, will result in savings. President Huntington and his team did an outstanding job over the course of the last 18 months to secure this loan and Heidelberg’s future.”

Seneca Wind Introduces Office in Tiffin

sPower-Logo_onWhite.jpgsPower Opens Seneca County Headquarters at 23 Court Street

Press release provided by sPower

Joined by Seneca County residents, business leaders and elected officials, sPower cut the ribbon on an office for the Seneca Wind project in downtown Tiffin that will be open to the public during designated hours, five days a week. sPower encourages people to visit the office at 23 Court Street for information about Seneca Wind or to leave comments or questions about the project.

“Today we make it official that Seneca Wind is a long-term member of this outstanding community,”  said Gordon Gray, director of wind for sPower. “We thank the residents and community leaders who have welcomed us, and we invite everyone to visit our office and engage with us.”

The Seneca Wind office will be staffed by Cynthia Beat, a resident of Attica, and will be open during the following hours:

  • Monday, 9 a.m. – noon
  • Tuesday, 9 a.m. – noon
  • Wednesday, 2 – 6 p.m.
  • Thursday, 9 a.m. – noon
  • Friday, 9 a.m. – noon

“I welcome sPower to our downtown community – another success in the efforts to revitalize the courthouse square area,” Seneca County Commissioner Shayne Thomas said. “Representatives from sPower made several commitments to the commissioners. One of them was to have a staffed local office in downtown Tiffin. I thank them for keeping that pledge. This move demonstrates their long-term commitment to the county and their promise to be accessible to concerned citizens. sPower’s small local office will grow into hundreds of millions of dollars in new investment across the county.”

The Ohio Power Siting Board (OPSB) is reviewing sPower’s application for a 212 megawatt wind farm. sPower is seeking a Certificate of Environmental Compatibility and Public Need as part of a comprehensive public review process.

In September, the State of Ohio certified Seneca Wind as a Qualified Energy Project, establishing a fixed payment in lieu of taxes throughout the operational life of the project. Based on the proposed 212 megawatts of nameplate capacity and the 30-year expected lifetime of the project, this will result in $56 million of revenue from sPower to be divided among schools, townships and other taxing jurisdictions in Seneca County. The Qualified Energy Project program also creates requirements for in-state employment, renewable energy education, road improvement and repair, and emergency response training.

Seneca Wind will consist of up to 85 wind turbines on approximately 25,000 acres of privately leased land in Scipio, Reed, Venice, Eden and Bloom townships, providing enough clean energy to power almost 60,000 homes each year.

About sPower: sPower, an AES and AIMCo company, is the largest private owner of operating solar assets in the United States. sPower owns and operates a portfolio of solar and wind assets greater than 1.3 gigawatts and has a development pipeline of more than 13 gigawatts. sPower is owned by a joint venture partnership between The AES Corporation (NYSE: AES), a worldwide energy company headquartered in Arlington, Virginia, and the Alberta Investment Management Corporation, one of Canada’s largest and most diversified institutional investment fund managers. For more information, visit www.sPower.com. To learn more about the Seneca Wind project, visit www.SenecaWind.com.

 

Tiffin University to launch its first Ph.D. Program

DSCF6126.jpgPress release provided by Tiffin University

TIFFIN UNIVERSITY, Tiffin, OH—Tiffin University will launch its first Ph.D. Program beginning fall semester 2019.

The degree, Global Leadership and Change, was approved by the Institutional Actions Council of the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) at its meeting on Dec. 4, 2018.

“This exciting step forward is in line with our commitment to Celebrating Cultural Uniqueness (CCU),” said TU President Dr. Lillian Schumacher. “CCU builds global and cultural appreciation into our institutional DNA and the word global is not limited to international, ethnicity or race. It also includes differences in gender, religion, region, financial situation, sexual orientation, or physical ability—all elements that shape a person’s worldview,” she said.

“Global leaders are critical,” Schumacher continued, “especially in today’s complex and volatile political environment. Students who enroll in our Ph.D. program can expect to earn an education focused on leadership theory and practice that is inclusive of understanding, working with, and respecting others who are different from us. Providing this level of knowledge and ability sets TU apart from many other institutions of higher learning.”

Global Leadership and Change was developed with the adult professional in mind,” said Dr. Kenneth Rauch, Director of the Ph.D. Program. “It was designed with a curriculum to recognize the challenges and tremendous opportunities within today’s cross-cultural work environment. Practitioners in leadership roles in today’s business and educational environments have often been excluded by the traditional delivery of Ph.D. programs and extensive residency requirements within these programs. TU’s degree is offered within the online format and features limited residency requirements. Flexibility and the relational approach of faculty engagement allow students to work independently, but never alone.”

“It is imperative to gain as much exposure to other cultures and different perspectives as possible,” said Dr. Peter Holbrook, Provost. “Learning about how people in different cultures think, communicate, and achieve results will advance any career. It is TU’s intention to provide that learning environment for all of its students; especially those who enroll in this exciting new program.”

For more information about TU’s Global Leadership and Change Ph.D. program, contact Dr. Kenneth Rauch at rauchk@tiffin.edu .

About TIFFIN UNIVERSITY
Founded in 1888, TU has become a premier university for challenging students to enhance their global competencies for success in a diverse world. The University enrolls students in undergraduate and graduate degree programs in Tiffin, Ohio, at several locations in Ohio, online, and in several foreign countries. The campus at Tiffin is a blend of traditional historic and modern buildings, creating a vibrant and warm home for a culturally diverse educational community. Throughout its history, TU has maintained its dedication to providing a professionally focused, learning-centered education to prepare students for successful careers and for productive and satisfying lives of excellence, leadership, and service. Tiffin University’s faculty offers a unique combination of practical application with scholarly knowledge. The TU approach to learning and skill set development insists on connecting students to the workplace as soon, and as often, as possible during their college experience through internships.

Tiffin manufacturer Agrati announces $1.6M expansion

Company to continue investment through 2019

agrati logoTIFFIN, OHIO – November 25, 2018 – The Agrati Group, a global manufacturer of fasteners for automotive companies, has announced completing its investment of $1.6 million in industrial machinery, equipment, and renovations at the Airport Industrial Park facility in Tiffin, creating 10 new jobs and bringing the total number of jobs at the Tiffin plant to 66. The project took place throughout calendar year 2018, and the company looks to consider possible additional investment next year.

The Tiffin plant was previously Jacobson Manufacturing which was acquired by ContMidGroup in 2014, which was in turn acquired by the Agrati Group in 2016. It is now one of 12 Agrati production facilities worldwide and two in Ohio. The facility primarily focuses on cold forming, tapping and thread rolling auto and truck wheel nuts, as well as a variety of tubular products, produced through fully automated welding and assembly. The facility was last expanded in 2013 with the addition of a 40,000 square foot building.

Agrati Plant Manager Casey Poignon commented: “This investment allowed us to expand our operations in Tiffin and we look toward future investment,” he said. “We have a great workforce, and we appreciate the support of JobsOhio, RGP Northwest Ohio, the Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership, OhioMeansJobs, and other partners in facilitating this and future projects.”

Tiffin Mayor Aaron Montz applauded the company’s continued investment in the community. “Since their entry into the Tiffin market, with the purchase of the Jacobson/ConMidGroup plant, Agrati has been a great community partner and I look forward to the additional investment and jobs they will bring to the city.”

About The Agrati Group
The Agrati Group, which was established in 1939, is currently one of the leading global manufacturers of fastening systems in the automotive component sector. With over 2,600 employees worldwide, the Agrati Group has 12 production sites, 12 sales and application offices and five logistics centers located in Europe, the US and China. Each year, the Group acquires about 160,000 tons of steel and manufactures about eight billion pieces (bolts, special screws, nuts and advanced form parts). Headquartered in Veduggio, Italy, the Group is controlled by the family holding company whose major shareholder is Cesare Agrati.

About the Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership
Started in 1983 as the Seneca Industrial and Economic Development Corp. (SIEDC), the Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership is a private, non-profit corporation dedicated to driving positive economic, downtown, and community development in Tiffin and Seneca County, Ohio, which consistently ranks among the top communities nationally for economic development. Learn more about the great things going on in Tiffin and Seneca County at http://www.tiffinseneca.com.

YMCA of Bucyrus-Tiffin announces Charles Ardner as new President & CEO

Ardner Brings Extensive Experience in Not for Profit Administration

 Press release provided by the YMCA of Bucyrus-Tiffin

Ardner, Charles headshotTIFFIN, OHIO NOVEMBER 21, 2018– The YMCA of Bucyrus-Tiffin announced today that Charles “Buster” Ardner will serve as the new Chief Executive Officer, effective January 14th. He will succeed Steve Crone who served as CEO for 10 years and left at the end of July.

Buster Ardner currently serves as Assistant Vice President for Finance and Auxiliary Services at Tiffin University, a position he has held since 2011, and has more than 20 years of experience in not for profit administration. He has also served 14 years on the Tiffin YMCA Board. His impressive track record of executing significant initiatives that seek to improve Tiffin University and his dedication to volunteerism with the YMCA make him an ideal choice to lead the YMCA of Bucyrus-Tiffin.

Ardner was chosen in a national search, conducted in part with Y-USA. A six-member search committee, composed of YMCA board members and Y members representing both Bucyrus and Tiffin, chose Ardner after an in-depth, six-month search process.

“We are privileged to welcome Buster Ardner to the YMCA in the role of CEO,” said Kim Radison, chair of the CEO search committee. “Buster has dedicated more than 10 years to the YMCA in a volunteer capacity, led us through a major capital campaign and the merger with the Bucyrus Area YMCA as Board Chair, and brings a wealth of experience in non-profit management from his 20-year career with Tiffin University. He is more than capable to fill this role and we are excited to bring him on as our new CEO.”

“I am grateful for the opportunity to lead an organization that has such a meaningful impact on the lives of those in our communities,” said Buster. “I look forward to continuing that vital work and adding to the success that Steve Crone and his staff have built at our YMCA’s.”

Ardner earned his Bachelor of Business Administration and Master of Business Administration at Tiffin University.

About the YMCA
The mission of the YMCA of Bucyrus-Tiffin is to put Christian principles into practice through programs that help healthy spirit, mind and body for all. With a focus on youth development, healthy living and social responsibility, the Y nurtures the potential of every youth and teen, improves Bucyrus and Tiffin’s health and well-being and provides opportunities to give back and support neighbors.