Thirteen years ago, a group of local leaders recruited Jeff Fluhr from Baton Rouge to Wichita to serve as the president of the Wichita Downtown Development Corporation, now Downtown Wichita.
Six years ago, Jeff’s role was expanded to assist in creating the Greater Wichita Partnership, an economic development organization focused on developing a unique, holistic approach to community growth from downtown to the ten-county region.
The Partnership is designed to align and focus efforts to make our region more competitive through three strategic priorities – Jobs, Talent and Quality of Place. The Partnership is built upon teamwork and the idea that, when everyone is advancing in the same direction, the region can create a powerful force to effect change. Jeff credits the numerous investors and community partners with creating that change.
Jeff began in Wichita by working closely with the community and stakeholders to develop and implement Project Downtown: The Master Plan for Wichita, which was adopted in 2010, and has served as an economic driver for development. Since its adoption, total investment in Wichita’s urban core has exceeded one billion dollars.
During his time as President of the Greater Wichita Partnership, Jeff has led efforts to oversee and advance the three strategic priorities of the organization, including the concurrent development of three extensive strategic plans – the Regional Growth Plan, the Talent Marketing Blueprint and Project Wichita. Additionally, under his leadership, the Partnership has cultivated company growth within the region resulting in over 10,000 new jobs, $2.5 billion in total capital investment and approximately $500 million in total annual payroll since 2015.
Prior to coming to Wichita, Jeff served as the Assistant Executive Director of the City of Baton Rouge Downtown Development District. Jeff holds a bachelor’s degree in landscape architecture from the University of Kentucky and a master’s degree in landscape architecture from Louisiana State University, with an emphasis on urban planning and business.
Jeff is actively involved in the community, serving on various boards including the Wichita Regional Chamber of Commerce, Visit Wichita and previously on the Wichita Community Foundation and the International Downtown Association Executive Board. Jeff is also a member of the Rotary Club of Wichita.
Jeff is married to Melissa and they have two children, a son Matthew and a daughter Anna Joy.
As executive vice president of operations, Evan provides leadership to the Partnership’s internal operations, planning and organizational development. In the community, he also works to shepherd regional coalitions, including Project Wichita, the Riverfront Legacy Master Plan and a coalition of regional partners working toward economic recovery strategies in light of COVID-19. Evan also leads the Partnership’s entrepreneurship initiatives, including Accelerate Wichita.
Prior to joining the Partnership in March 2018, Evan practiced law in Kansas City, provided executive leadership to a growing church in the Kansas City metro area, and most recently served as Chief of Staff in the Missouri Attorney General’s office. The key uniting theme in Evan's leadership background is his passion and capacity for leading diverse communities and organizations toward transformational change.
A Wichita native, Evan received his Bachelor of Arts from Baylor University and his Juris Doctor with dean's honors from Washburn University School of Law. Evan is married to Jessie and most of his free time is spent with his family of four young children, spending time outdoors, serving on the board of the Classical School of Wichita and serving his local church.
As the reception and administrative coordinator, Bonnie provides organizational support through operational and event management, coordination of calendars and in-office meetings and direct support for the various Boards and Senior Staff team.
With more than 25 years of experience, Bonnie has worked alongside an executive team of a Fortune 500 company as the executive administrative assistant at National Beef in Dodge City and also the executive administrative assistant and deputy clerk for the USD 443 School Board for more than 14 years. Bonnie brings an array of experience in not only human resources but also a multiplicity of administrative task skills.
Bonnie is a native of Southwest Kansas and has been an advocate for abused and battered women, serving as a women’s shelter advocate. Bonnie is inspired daily by her husband Jim and their four boys and three grandsons. In her free time, Bonnie likes long distance bike rides, crafting and attending activities with her children and grandchildren as well as serving at her local church.
As vice president of investor relations, Becca is focused on leading the Partnership's investor relations program by identifying and developing relationships with investors to support and empower the key vision and priorities of the organization. She is also responsible for the organization’s fundraising, stakeholder engagement and management of strategic projects and initiatives.
Becca is passionate about developing authentic, strong relationships and effecting positive change in the community, both professionally and personally.
Prior to joining the Partnership, Becca was the director of membership and events for the Wichita Independent Business Association and the executive director of the Wichita Police Foundation.
A Wichita transplant, Becca has emersed herself in the Wichita community earning several awards for her leadership, including the Women Who Lead in Public Service Award for the Wichita Business Journal, W/’s Community Service Award and the Cooper/McKee Volunteer of the Year Award for her work with the Wichita Police Department.
Becca grew up in a rural community in Washington state and went on to earn her bachelor's degree as a dual major in early childhood and elementary education from Central Washington University. She brings with her a diverse background in education, nonprofit development and event management.
Outside of work, you can find Becca playing softball, cycling, hiking throughout Kansas and Colorado and kayaking on the Arkansas river with friends.
To learn more about opportunities to engage with the Partnership, contact Becca today.
As executive vice president of economic development, Andrew develops, leads and facilitates business retention and recruitment initiatives; oversees the Regional Growth Plan, an economic strategy for the greater Wichita region and markets the community to existing and prospective businesses.
Prior to joining the Partnership, Andrew served as the executive director of the Shawnee Economic Development Council where he supported companies and area entrepreneurs in the creation of jobs and capital investments. Before that, Andrew served as business recruitment and retention manager for the Overland Park Economic Development Council where he implemented a systematic business retention and expansion program for more than 350 local companies utilizing a team of volunteers.
In addition to local businesses and volunteer leadership, Andrew has worked closely with area commercial brokers, national and international site selectors, the Kansas Department of Commerce and currently serves as the President of the Kansas Economic Development Alliance.
As director of business intelligence, James leads the research and analytic services supporting the economic development strategies of the organization, to drive the organization’s use of data to influence strategic business decisions, increase the economic development prospect pipeline, improve the ROI of business attraction and marketing efforts and help our region attract more family-supporting jobs.
Previously, James interned for the Partnership where he focused on updating the LocationOne Information System (LOIS), a commercial real estate database, while also working as a graduate research assistant for the Public Policy and Management Center at Wichita State University. Prior to this, he has worked in local government and the Kansas legislature.
James holds a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Pittsburg State University and is currently completing a Master of Public Administration from Wichita State University. He is also pursuing a Certified Economic Developer (CEcD) from the International Economic Development Council (IEDC) and a Certified Economic Research Professional (CERP) from the Council for Community and Economic Research (C2ER).
A true ambassador of the community, Jason Gregory has been with Downtown Wichita since 2011. His primary role as executive vice president is to bring the visionary master plan for downtown’s development, Project Downtown: The Master Plan for Wichita, to reality.
Acting as a liaison between private investors and the public sectors, Jason collaborates toward actions and investments that benefit the larger community, and are a catalyst for future growth. He works daily to cultivate commerce and culture in the region’s urban core.
Jason grew up on the farm in southwest Sedgwick county and went on to earn degrees in Business Administration and Landscape Architecture from Friends University and Kansas State University respectively. He has a diverse background in business, landscape architecture, urban design, project management and commercial construction.
Jason is an elected School Board Member for USD 268 in Cheney. In his free time, he volunteers his time coaching numerous youth sports and is involved with his local church. He currently serves on the Wichita Transit Advisory Board and is a member of the International Downtown Association.
Jason is married to Angie and they have three boys, Jack, Graham and Emmet.
As the director of creative engagement & placemaking, Emily manages and implements various programming and placemaking initiatives, serves as the liaison to businesses and property owners within the downtown district, and works with partner organizations and municipalities to further the mission of Downtown Wichita. A primary focus of this position is revitalizing and enhancing Wichita’s urban core to enhance perceptions and increase vitality. Previously, Emily held the position of Artistic Director for CityArts, the City of Wichita’s community art education and gallery center located in the heart of downtown Wichita. A native Kansan, Emily holds a Master of Fine Arts degree from Wichita State University and a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from the University of Kansas. She is actively involved in the community and currently serves as a member of the Art and Design Advocates board for the WSU School of Art, Design, and Creative Industries. Professional memberships include the College Art Association and Americans for the Arts.