Feature Presentations - Indiana WEA

Feature Presentations

Tom Henry- Mayor of Fort Wayne

Wednesday, August 21st  |  9:30 a.m.

Tom Henry is serving in his third term as Mayor of Fort Wayne. Leading Indiana’s second largest city, Mayor Henry is making government the best it can be for residents and businesses by demonstrating a commitment to engagement, innovation, and performance. Mayor Henry has a strong record of successes in neighborhood infrastructure improvements, downtown development, job creation, business expansions, advances in public safety, and enhancements to the City’s world-class park system. Before being elected Mayor, he served from 1983-2003 on Fort Wayne City Council, representing northwest Fort Wayne. Mayor Henry has lived in Fort Wayne almost all his life and began his career in the private sector as CEO of a group purchasing organization serving hospitals. He then went on to become a successful small business owner of a local insurance agency and healthcare consulting firm.

A 1970 graduate of Fort Wayne Central Catholic High School, Mayor Henry earned his bachelor’s degree in psychology and his MBA from the University of Saint Francis. He is also an Army veteran. One of 17 children, Mayor Henry and his wife, Cindy, have been married since 1975. They have two grown children and four grandchildren and are members of Most Precious Blood Church.

Highlights of successes under Mayor Henry’s leadership since he took office January 1, 2008:


Bringing an entrepreneur perspective to running utilities, Kumar Menon has led City Utilities in Fort Wayne IN since 2008. His focus on developing educational pipelines, promoting environmental entrepreneurship and supporting economic development has led to City Utilities to national recognition as a regional provider of utility services, and a national leader in utility management.

Using best management practices to streamline the process, by actively being engaged in economic development programs and proactively partnering with educational institutions in the State of Indiana, City Utilities has grown by over 30 percent in recent years. This growth comes from creating a positive and supportive business environment with partnerships for local, statewide and national developers, as well as through strategic acquisition and long-term contracts with surrounding communities.

City Utilities has trained hundreds of aspiring high school and college students through internships, apprenticeships, etc.

In addition to investing in the pipeline of talent development, City Utilities investments of more than  $1B in new and upgraded infrastructure and maintenance over the last decade. With a focus on cost-cutting and revenue generation, City Utilities has streamlined the organization while bringing in/saving millions of dollars through non-traditional revenues, process improvements and overhead reductions.

Before working in Fort Wayne, Kumar served as the Director of the Dept. of Public Works in Indianapolis, responsible for overseeing the Streets, Traffic, Solid Waste, Stormwater, Sewers, and Fleet program, with a capital budget of over $500M. In that capacity, he oversaw the implementation of Indiana’s first Consent Decree on fixing sewer overflows – a federally mandated, 20+ year $2B program. He also developed Indianapolis’ first “Green Print” to ensure new and existing environmental processes and design standards.

Before working in the public sector, Kumar spent several years in private business, starting and developing firms that provided business process management and information tech to several public and private sector companies.

With a background in Economics, Business, Strategic Planning and Leadership Development, he also spent several years as an educator at Indiana University and Indiana Wesleyan, where he taught courses in business management, economics, etc.


Andrea Bruce- Documentary Photographer

Thursday, August 22nd| 12:00 p.m.

Andrea Bruce is an award-winning documentary photographer whose work focuses on people living in the aftermath of war. She concentrates on the social issues that are sometimes ignored and often ignited in war’s wake.

Andrea will join us to speak about her work on a specific project that appears in the August 2017 issue of National Geographic where she photographed communities where lack of toilet sanitation causes disease and malnutrition in an area where old practices of water sanitation are being used. Separating waste from drinking and bathing water is imperative, but many parts of the world are unable to do so. Her photographic work and the storytelling behind the photos capture the dangers for people without access to basic sanitation. She has photographed for the The New York Times as well as many publications around the globe. Andrea was a 2016 Nieman Fellow at Harvard University where she studied political theory and democracy.

Andrea started working in Iraq in 2003, bringing a local reporter’s knack for intimacy and community focus to the lives of Iraqis and the US military. For over ten years she has chronicled the world’s most troubled areas, focusing on Iraq and Afghanistan.

For eight years she worked as a staff photographer for The Washington Post, where she originated and authored a weekly column called “Unseen Iraq.” She also worked at The Concord Monitor and The St. Petersburg Times after graduating from The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1995. She is now a member/ owner of the photo agency NOOR.

Her awards include the 2018 IWMF Anja Niedrinhaus award, a 2014 World Press Photo 2nd prize for Daily Life singles for the image ‘Soldier’s Funeral’ and the inaugural Chris Hondros Fund Award in 2012 for the “commitment, willingness, and sacrifice shown in her work.” In 2010 the White House News Photographers Association (WHNPA) awarded Andrea a grant for her work on conflict in Ingushetia. She has been named Photographer of the Year four times by the WHNPA, received several awards from the Pictures of the Year International contest, including the 2017 Environmental Vision Award, and was awarded the prestigious John Faber Award from the Overseas Press Club in New York.

Currently, she is a CatchLight Fellow and a National Geographic Explorer and is based in North Carolina.

To read the article and view pictures of the National Geographic article Nearly a Billion People Still Defecate Outdoors. Here’s Why click here