Kandris appointed associate director at Polis Center

kandris.sharon.2013.jpgKandris Sharon

The Polis Center within the IU School of Liberal Arts at IUPUI has named Sharon Kandris as its new associate director.

Kandris will lead center-wide initiatives, cultivate the development of new initiatives and project opportunities, expand community partnerships to further the Center’s mission, direct the community informatics area as a special focus of attention for the Center, address operational issues, and oversee strategic planning.

“This is an exciting time to take on fresh challenges because The Polis Center is undergoing a new strategic planning and restructuring process in order to be more responsive to community needs and to build on our many and diverse collaborative partnerships," Kandris said. "I look forward to developing even deeper connections in our communities and helping them build a better future.”

Kandris joined The Polis Center 18 years ago, serving most recently as director of community informatics. She earned a master’s degree in geography from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, concentrating in geographic information systems and community planning, and received a B.A. degree in geography from Northwest Missouri State University.

“For more than a decade, Sharon has provided great leadership in securing grants, contracts, and scholarships for the Polis Center,” said Executive Director David Bodenhamer. "She has directed large community-based projects, fostered strong relationships with organizations in Indiana, and has been a strong advocate for community-focused change in the National Neighborhoods Indicators Partnership. She brings great talent, vision, and energy to new role, and I am delighted that she will continue to be a model servant-leader for Central Indiana.”

The Polis Center was established in 1989 and is deeply committed to the development of partnerships and the practical use of advanced technologies. Its collaborative and entrepreneurial nature results in a unique and diverse range of applied projects to strengthen communities in Indiana and beyond.

Blending academic and practical skills, the Center specializes in providing place-based research tools to transform data into usable information for more effective local decision-making. The Polis Center also offers the SAVI online tool—the nation’s largest community information system (—to help nonprofits, academia, government, and health organizations assess trends and conditions, identify service gaps, and better target areas of concern based on the social, economic and other demographic realities in more than 2,000 Central Indiana communities.

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