Ross Ratliff is the President of the Indiana Junior Chamber of Commerce of the La Porte Jaycees and the Four Winds Casino training manager. He grew up in Rolling Prairie where he attended New Prairie High School and continued his education at St. Joseph’s College and Lake Michigan College where he obtained an associate’s degree in hospitality and tourism management.
Ratliff is a board member for Leadership La Porte County in addition to his position with the La Porte Jaycees, which is a service organization for young professionals between the ages of 18 and 40 that focuses on three areas of development.
“The first area of development is individual development, so helping yourself grow. The second is community service, so serving your community. And the third covers the management development side, which helps you learn skills to apply to your professional job, such as budgeting and planning events,” Ratliff stated.
Ratliff has been involved with the Jaycees for four years now and is the media director for the La Porte Jaycees Chapter. He also currently serves as the Indiana President for the International Jaycees and overlooks all the chapters in the state of Indiana.
“As the Indiana Jaycees President, I oversee the operations of the chapters in the state of Indiana. I also serve on the National Board of Directors as the state president, as well,” he said.
As the Indiana Jaycees State President, he is responsible for a handful of different tasks.
“I am responsible for helping the chapters develop their membership and being the ‘go to’ person for any questions about events the chapters want to host in their community,” he explained. “So my focus is to be there when the chapters host the events to support them and help them in any way they need help. It is nice because then I get to network with other members from across the state.”
Ratliff’s favorite part about holding the position as the Indiana Jaycees President is being able to help others and help the community grow.
“The best part is being able to see not only La Porte grow, which is really near to my heart, but seeing the other chapters grow and develop. I know as a member of the Jaycees, it has really changed my life in terms of growth and development,” he said. “I would not be able to do what I am doing today without this organization. Being able to see people grow within the organization and apply themselves is really exciting to me.”
Ratliff is heavily involved with the Jaycees, but that is all strictly volunteer work for him. In addition to his countless hours volunteering, he holds a full-time job at Four Winds Casino in New Buffalo, Michigan as a training manager, which he was just recently promoted to. He has been with the casino for the past seven years.
As a training manager, Ratliff is responsible for all training and development classes for employees that are held at the casino.
“I hold new hire courses, compliance courses, and food safety courses, just to name a few. I am also responsible for developing leadership courses to help employees grow within the company,” he said.
Ratliff enjoys working at the casino because his workdays are not the same on a day-to-day basis and his classes are never the same, since he is always rotating in new material.
Outside of working at Four Winds Casino and serving as the Indiana Jaycees President, he enjoys visiting theme parks, such as Cedar Point, going to different Haunted Houses, and traveling.
“I have been blessed within the Jaycees to travel quite a bit because we host meetings and events in and outside of the country. I went to Quebec City, Canada last year and am going to the Dominican Republic for a meeting in May,” he said. “When we travel, all the chapters from the international Jaycees come together and have a meeting all about the Jaycees, so it is cool to see the dynamic of all of that.”