City of Washington Celebrates Small Business and New Downtown Mural

October 19, 2022

For more information contact:

Staci Hupp Ballard
Iowa Economic Development Authority
[email protected]

City of Washington Celebrates Small Business and New Downtown Mural

Event to recognize the winner of the #IowansUnite video contest

October 19, 2022 (WASHINGTON, IA) – The Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA) and the Iowa Financial Authority (IFA) announced today that the Washington Chamber of Commerce recently won a custom mural by the artist of Iowa Ben Schuh by taking first place in the statewide #IowansUnite contest, an initiative that highlights community pride and support for small businesses.

The new mural, the small businesses and community leaders who led the effort will be celebrated at a public event on Wednesday, October 19, 2022 at 11:00 a.m. at the mural’s location at 101 Washington Street in Washington. The public is encouraged to witness the tour by the muralist and community leaders, then enjoy the local shops and restaurants.

“The story of small businesses and their vast intangible impacts on communities can only truly be told by their residents,” said Debi Durham, Executive Director of IEDA and IFA. “I commend Washington for doing just that and hope that anyone who passes by the mural recognizes the tremendous appreciation that exists for the small businesses that are a mainstay of this thriving community.”

Washington resident Isabella Santoro said, “When I first heard about the mural contest, I immediately thought my city deserved to win this!”

Santoro led the community’s video submission efforts with the help of his uncle, Randy Williams, who volunteered to produce the video. After the community video received enough votes to qualify for the final judging round, Santoro let his passion and authenticity flow into an essay that was selected as a community submission and ultimately won the competition. statewide. “Our businesses and our residents support each other in a way that I have never experienced anywhere else in the world,” Santoro wrote.

“Our community spirit has been manifested in unique and creative ways through Isabella’s leadership and the support of our local businesses and volunteers,” said Michelle Redlinger, executive director of the Washington Chamber of Commerce. “We are thrilled to celebrate the addition of the mural to our community through the partnership of IEDA, IFA and artist Ben Schuh.”

Visit for more information about the event.

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