Elected Indiana’s youngest mayor at 23 years old in November of 2011, following his graduation cum laude from Butler University with a communications degree, Chris McBarnes and his team led Frankfort, Indiana for eight years and two months achieving a number of successes built around a series of 100 and 200-Day Plans involving four cornerstones: Neighborhood Revitalization, Economic Development, Communications and Citizen Voice.
A sampling of major achievements from the McBarnes administration include creating an Economic Development Plan and Frankfort Redevelopment Commission; raising $3 million in private sector funds to build transformational quality of place projects, including the dynamic downtown greenspace Prairie Creek Park; forming a partnership with Ivy Tech Community College to create a local campus in Frankfort; attracting two major food manufacturers, Con Agra Foods and Indiana Packers Corporation, putting Frankfort on the path to being the city that feeds the state that feeds the world; attracting $230 million of investment to the existing Frito Lay plant in Frankfort, making it the largest site of its kind globally; being selected as one of six finalists in Indiana’s Stellar Communities Program; creating and implementing six City-County Leadership Summits to bring together more than 50 city, county and education officials to learn about leadership and communication; leading the charge in lifting Frankfort to the 8th Safest City in Indiana according to Safewise in the year 2019.
With a nod toward his focus on providing quality educational opportunities for area youth, McBarnes created the Frankfort Future Leaders Advisory Council where he worked with the brightest high school students in Frankfort to involve them in public policy development.
Since Frankfort’s founding in 1830, McBarnes is the only third term elected mayor in the city’s history.
Now in the role as Executive Director of The WYldlife Fund, McBarnes hopes to bring his same enthusiastic and collaborative leadership style to the table in order to positively impact the wildlife of Wyoming. McBarnes has been a lifelong outdoorsman and next to faith and family this is his biggest passion. Chris lives in Buffalo, Wyoming with his wife Samantha and their cat Nugget.