Dan Buckenmeyer

Senior Specialist, Economic Development

Dan Buckenmeyer currently serves as Senior Specialist, Economic Development at the South Bend – Elkhart Regional Partnership, a collaboration of economic development partners in the South Bend-Elkhart Region, which encompasses 47 communities in Northern Indiana and Southwest Michigan. The organization serves as a single point of contact for regional communication and seeks to advance economic opportunities for all partner members through collaborative promotion, marketing, and capacity building efforts.

As Senior Specialist, Economic Development at the South Bend – Elkhart Regional Partnership, Dan works with the Regional Partnership and the South Bend International Airport to increase the direct and indirect economic benefits of airport operations throughout the region. This includes real estate development, international trade, Foreign Trade Zone use, cargo service development, public-private partnerships and more to move people and goods, fueling the regional economy.

Dan has been an economic development practitioner in Indiana and Southwest Michigan for over a decade. Before joining the Regional Partnership in 2021, Dan was the Director of Economic Development for the City of South Bend, where he drove efforts securing more than $300 million in new private investment and 1,000 new and retained jobs. Prior to his work in economic development, Dan has enjoyed a diverse career in areas including nonprofit management and corporate marketing and sales leadership. He also has a life-long track record of mostly successes in entrepreneurial ventures.

Education and Professional Accreditations


  • Master of Business Administration, Booth Graduate School of Business, University of Chicago
  • Master of International Business Economics, Katholieke Universitiet Leuven, Belgium, EU
  • Bachelor of Arts, DePaul University, Chicago


  • Fundraising Management, Indiana University School of Fundraising
  • Non-Profit Management, University of Notre Dame, Notre Dame, Ind.
  • Economic Development, Michigan Economic Development Corporation

Fun Facts About Dan

  • Dan is a life-long learner.
  • He thrives on helping and watching businesses succeed.
  • Dan has an insatiable curiosity for how industries, businesses and things work.
  • His greatest professional desire is to work in the background to drive success in the region.
  • Dan's an aviation geek and loves working with and at the airport, a key driver for regional growth.

Regional Favorites

Restaurant: “I love food, I’m an equal opportunity eater, so many favorite dishes, drinks, and dives. Ask me for a recommendation.”

Outdoor Activity: “When we’re not off camping or watching my boys play soccer and baseball, my family enjoys working, playing and hunting on our small farm.”

Shop: “Our region boasts so many great places and unique finds, make it your own adventure to seek out the family businesses, mom & pop shops, agribusinesses, craftspeople, and small-town gems.”

Cultural Activity: “Camping with my family in our travel trailer that was built right here in the region! Yes. Camping is Culture.”

Best Way to Spend a Saturday in the Region: “Craft brewery hopping and eating with friends and family!”

More information available for reference on Dan's LinkedIn profile.