Indiana 15 Regional Planning Commission is a multi-county governmental agency as enabled by Indiana Code 36-7-7, and has served the counties of Crawford, Dubois, and Orange since 1973 when originally named Patoka Lake Regional Planning Commission. Perry and Spencer joined the Commission shortly thereafter in 1974. Pike County joined the Commission in 1993. Indiana 15 is partially funded through annual county per-capita fees and an annual federal planning grant as an Economic Development District of the U.S. Department of Commerce - Economic Development Administration. The balance of the annual cost of operations of Indiana 15 is funded through professional, fee-for-service contracts with participating local governments and not-for-profit corporations for administrative, planning and technical services within the six-county region. Throughout its years of service, Indiana 15 has been involved with a multitude of community and economic development projects bringing millions of dollars into the regional economy.
The staff of Indiana 15 Regional Planning Commission conducts the daily activities and operations of the six-county commission. There are four certified grant administrators on staff to service the program requirements of Community Development Block Grant funds for the Indiana Office of Community and Rural Affair's programs. The Commission also provides for staffing of specialized services in revolving loan fund administration, computer-aided mapping, municipal codifications, infrastructure development, and community and economic development planning.
Nathan assumed the role of Executive Director of Indiana 15 in 2023. He oversees the professional, technical and administrative services to our six-county district. In his position, he reports to the Board of Directors about the performance of this regionally outcome-based organization. Nathan is an accredited grant writer through the Indiana Office of Community and Rural Affairs. He is responsible for administration of CDBG funded projects, grant applications and administration of other grants, and provides assistance on other projects which Indiana 15 is developing. Nathan also conducts U.S. Department of Labor Standards Verification on construction projects. Prior to his arrival at Indiana 15, he worked at Lincoln Boyhood National Memorial in Lincoln City. He is a graduate of Brescia University in Owensboro, KY with a Bachelor of Arts in Social Studies with Secondary Education, and received his Master of Public Administration from Western Kentucky University. He has been with Indiana 15 Regional Planning Commission since March 2006.
Cheri serves as the Financial Administrator for Indiana 15 and manages the accounts and contract financial records through Grant Management Systems (GMS) software, maintains personnel management files, prepares the annual budget of the Commission, conducts inventory control, maintains all board records, files state and federal financial requirements, assists with the codifications and newsletter. Cheri also administrates the Crawford County Revolving Loan Fund. Cheri joined Indiana 15 in December 2014 as a Project Assistant and is a certified grant administrator with the Indiana Office of Community and Rural Affairs. She has an Associate’s Degree in Finance from the University of Kentucky-Owensboro Community College and a Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting from Brescia. Prior to arrival at Indiana 15, she worked for the Perry County Chamber of Commerce.
Joining Indiana 15 in March of 2018, Jenny serves as a Project Assistant. She is a certified grant administrator with the Indiana Office of Community and Rural Affairs. In her role at Indiana 15, Jenny is responsible for CDBG grant writing and administration, conducting income surveys, verifying labor standards and environmental reviews. Jenny holds a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education from the University of Southern Indiana and is a life-long resident of Spencer County. Prior to her arrival at Indiana 15, Jenny worked in local schools and in Adult Education.
Serves as the Administrative Assistant of Indiana 15 Regional Planning Commission. Lindsey greets visitors to our office, answers the phone, maintains all board records, backups, and website. She also assists with codifications and the newsletter, conducts inventory control, and is additional office support for staff. Lindsey joined the Indiana 15 staff in June of 2018.
Leah Hawkins joined Indiana 15 in September of 2020 and serves as the Technical Services Specialist. In her role at Indiana 15, Leah will be responsible for measuring and addressing the impacts of the novel Coronavirus on our local communities as part of the EDA CARES Act. Leah holds a Bachelor of Science in Public Affairs from Indiana University and is a life-long southern Hoosier. In her free time, Leah instructs for the Tell City High School Marching Marksmen.
Lisa Gehlhausen serves as Consulting Director in an advisory role to the Executive Director and Commission. She is a certified grant administrator and has extensive experience in developing, budgeting, and administering a variety of community and economic development projects to meet priorities of local governments. Lisa has been with Indiana 15 Regional Planning Commission since 1978, serving as Executive Director from 2005 to 2023. Lisa continues to administer existing projects as she transitions to retirement.
Jessica graduated from Indiana University in 2005 with a Bachelor’s of Art in History. Jessica brings more than 20 years of administrative, analytic and financial experience to Indiana 15. Most recently as the Dubois County Soil & Water Conservation District Administrative Assistant where she worked with the Executive Director and NRCS District Conservationist to maintain compliance with both administrative and fiscal policies as they pertain to the public sector. She grew up on a 30-acre farm in Paoli and currently lives in St Anthony with her partner and two children.