My name is Robert and I’m a community builder.
With humble beginnings, I was raised in the rust belt city of Lake Station, a bedroom community to the more historically famous, Gary, Indiana. The Iraq War started just months before high school graduation in 2003 and I signed up for the US Navy Delayed Entry Program (DEP). Life took me in a different direction when I was awarded the Eli Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship, a 4-year full tuition ride to any college in Indiana. While I began school at Purdue University majoring in engineering, I transferred to Valparaiso University and finished with a BSBA in Finance in December 2007. Having perhaps the worst degree when the Great Recession began, I went back to school and received an MS in International Commerce & Policy in 2010, also from Valparaiso.
Since then, my life has pivoted between non-profits, government and private sector work. I have experience as a civil servant and political appointee roles at all levels of government. I have also participated in political campaigns at all levels including my own in 2015. In the private sector, my time was spent with a sole proprietorship, family-owned LLC, multi-national corporation and have also owned my own retail (clothing) store.
I believe there are five pillars to a strong community: education, business and labor, non-profits, government and faith-based organizations. This site serves as a tool to track my progress in community building and connect with others with common interests. Humility is the greatest attribute one can possess as we are all mortal, works in process and there is something we can learn everyone. It is through teamwork that we are able to achieve goals greater than ourselves.