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Dayton Finds Its Next Main Street Manager

The City of Dayton has found its next Main Street manager.

Robert Yoder will help lead the city's efforts to revitalize its central business district and industrial park.

“With unique assets like the Manhattan Harbour Development, two marinas, and the only Distinguished School District in the Northern Kentucky River Cities, Dayton is poised for growth,” Yoder said in a news release.

He has served as the City of Silver Grove's community and economic development director since last July.

Previously, Yoder has served in similar positions in Erlanger and Newport, and was also the executive director for the Carroll County Community Development Corporation. According to his LinkedIn page, he currently assists the City of Newport with grant writing efforts and has written applications for more than $15 million in requests. He manages the Southbank Trail Town initiative.

The Main Street manager position in Dayton led to the creation of an incentive program designed to create new business opportunities in the historic business district. But Yoder will be the third person to hold the position in less than a year. Anthony Cadle departed last January for a position with the City of Cincinnati, and Tina Neyer resigned after seven months on the job. City leaders committed to keeping the position in tact, though Mayor Virgil Boruske and City Administrator Michael Giffen had pitched the idea of a part-time contractor taking over the role.

Giffen said Yoder stood out from other applicants.

“I have gotten to know Robert over the last few years, especially with the work he has done over at Southbank with (president) Jack Moreland and his great team, but his experience in Main Street is ultimately what won out,” Giffen said.  

Mayor Virgil Boruske agreed that the City was hopeful to find someone that had direct experience working in Main Street. “Robert is a veteran Main Street Manager that can bring his experience and apply it to the great things we have going on in our Central Business District,“ said Boruske.

Yoder lives in Newport and will officially begin his new position at the City of Dayton on January 6. His experience with Main Street work and local trails could positively impact some citizen-driven initiatives such as creating a pier on the riverfront.

“I look forward working with the community in connecting our upcoming Riverfront Commons projects with the downtown business district to bring increase traffic for our existing businesses and attracting new business,” Yoder said.

-Michael Monks, editor & publisher