Jasper, Indiana Wins Sister Cities International’s Innovation Award for Business and Trade

WASHINGTON, DC – Jasper, Indiana has won the Sister Cities International 2019 Innovation Award for Business and Trade for a city with a population less than 25,000. The awards competition, which is open to over 500 sister city programs nationwide, recognizes the accomplishments of outstanding individuals and community sister city programs that are promoting peace through mutual respect, understanding, and cooperation.

The idea of importing wine from Pfaffenweiler, Germany, to Jasper, Indiana was generated during a discussion held at a joint Sister Cities & Partnership meeting marking their 30th anniversary as Sister Cities in 2015.

The ensuing work resulted in an exclusive trade relationship in the United States. At the time, the only place to purchase, taste, and drink Pfaffenweiler wine in the United States is in Jasper, Indiana. The goal was to develop an economic activity that would benefit and continue to promote the connection between Sister Cities of Jasper and our Sister City of Pfaffenweiler.

At the end of the year, an order for 125 cases was secured after research, planning, and organization, and the order was placed with the Pfaffenweiler winery in November 2018.  The shipment arrived in Jasper in March 2019. JSCC has begun preparation for improved labeling of the wine bottles and a more economical means of shipping the product.  JSCC hopes that continued communication between all of the players will provide greater opportunity for success and sustainability in the future.

“We all stand to learn from these superstar Sister City programs as they impact their communities across a broad range of sectors that include business entrepreneurship, youth leadership, and arts and culture,” said Roger-Mark De Souza, Sister Cities International’s President & CEO. “These individuals and local organizations inspire us to be better citizens as their work exemplifies President Eisenhower’s vision of engaged international citizen diplomats. They create beneficial connections and lasting relationships which will help their communities today and for years to come.”

Sister Cities International Annual Awards recognize excellence in overall programming and highlight key innovations in arts and culture; business and trade; humanitarian assistance; youth and education; and professional and technical exchange categories. We also honor a Volunteer of the Year and our Youth Leadership who demonstrate exceptional efforts to advance peace through citizen diplomacy. This year we will honor all our award winners during SCI’s 2019 Annual Conference from July 17-19 in Houston, Texas.

The conference will bring together hundreds of the most influential citizen diplomats and global leaders in diplomacy, foreign affairs, policy, business, and innovation to discuss, share examples, and network. This year’s theme, Cities Mean Business, will focus on smart and resilient cities, leadership development, and entrepreneurship as key building blocks of President Eisenhower’s vision of creating a more peaceful world through citizen engagement and international cooperation between cities.

Founded as a Presidential Initiative by Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1956, Sister Cities International serves as the national membership organization for 500 member communities with over 2,000 partnerships in more than 140 countries on six continents. The sister city network unites tens of thousands of citizen diplomats and volunteers who work tirelessly to promote the organizations’ mission of creating world peace and understanding through programs and projects focusing on arts and culture, youth and education, business and trade, and community development.

About Jasper Sister Cities:

Contact: Sandy Wehr ([email protected])