July/August 2019 Commerce Connection

Page 1


Volume 26 | Issue 4




ALSO INSIDE: 10 - 2019 Come Wine With Us Recap 12 - Building the Talent Pipeline Through Literacy & Numeracy


t ru s t e d

The ups and downs of operating a business in a campus town

Presorted Standard US Postage

C h a m pa i g n C o u n t y ’ s


Permit No. 29 Champaign, IL

b u s i n e s s - to - b u s i n e s s

p u b l i c at i o n





14 - Growing Business One Idea At a Time 20 - 2019 Golf Outing Recap


Giving local businesses the

advantage of

SBA Financing.

Recognized by SBA six years in a row.

2014-2019 as Central/Southern Illinois Community Lender of the Year!

In business, every advantage counts… and you can count on our experienced team of lenders to help you secure SBA financing for a variety of needs: • Business expansion or acquisition • New construction / land or building purchase • Equipment purchase • Leasehold improvements • Working capital or a seasonal line of credit • Inventory

Look for us in these area communities: CHAMPAIGN 398-0067 | URBANA 367-8451 | SAVOY 351-3526 MAHOMET 318-3750 | MANSFIELD 318-3771 MONTICELLO 762-2111 | RANTOUL 893-8100

firstmid.com 2

303 West Kirby Avenue Champaign, IL 61820 P 217.359.1791 | F 217.359.1809 www.champaigncounty.org

FY20 TOP INVESTORS TOP INVESTORS GOLD Busey SILVER Carle University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign OSF HealthCare Heart of Mary Medical Center BRONZE A & R Mechanical Contractors Amdocs BankChampaign, N.A. Christie Clinic First Mid Bank & Trust Health Alliance Hickory Point Bank & Trust Midland States Bank Napleton’s Auto Park of Urbana

CHAMBER STAFF Laura Weis President & CEO LauraW@champaigncounty.org

Stephanie McCullough Director of First Impressions StephanieM@champaigncounty.org

Matt Bradley Business Growth & Development Director MattB@champaigncounty.org

Lindsay Quick Director of Marketing & Events LindsayQ@champaigncounty.org

Mindy Cain Director of Workforce Readiness & Member Relations MindyC@champaigncounty.org

Stephanie Smith-Jeffries Office and Accounting Administrator StephanieS@chmapaigncounty.org

Garret Hill Public Policy Director GarretH@champaigncounty.org


Pradeep Khanna

Mike Estes


Chip Craddock

Chuck McReaken

Kyle Emkes

CHAIRMAN’S CIRCLE Illini Radio Group - MIX 94.5, WIXY 100.3, Rewind 92.5, WYXY Classic 99.1, True Oldies 97.9, Extra 92.1, Hits 99.7

Linda Difiore

Justin Overstreet

Tonya Horn

Stevie Jay Broadcasting - Q96-96.1FM, US105.9, Christian FM 95.3 & ESPN 93.5

Gary Hackler


Deb Reardanz Clark-Lindsey Village

Dan Kirby

NewsTalk 1400 WDWS, Lite Rock 97.5 WHMS, Classic Hits 107.9 WKIO

Zachary Hillard

Julianna Sellett

Dr. Jared Rogers


Dan Hurley FedEx Ground

Amie Smith

R.J. Hynds English Brothers Company

Bill Walter


Awards, Ltd. / Stamps Direct Dish Passionate Cuisine Hall of Fame Plaques & Signs Hyatt Place LongHorn Steakhouse TrophyTime, Inc. W.K. Cooper II Asset Management Corporation

Curtis Orchard, Ltd.

Clark Dietz, Inc.

Silgan Closures


Susan Jepsen

University of Illinois

TSM Ventures, Inc.

Martin Hood LLC


BankChampaign N.A.

A & R Mechanical Contractors

Chair, Fisher National Bank

First Vice Chair, Dodd & Maatuka

Second Vice Chair, Rogards

Treasurer, CliftonLarsonAllen

Past Chair OSF HealthCare Heart of Mary Medical Center

Laura Weis

Secretary, Champaign County Chamber of Commerce

Reynolds Towing Service, Inc.

FINANCIAL SERVICES Provided by CliftonLarsonAllen

All information contained within this publication is property of the Champaign County Chamber of Commerce and cannot be reproduced without prior expressed or written consent. This publication contains paid advertising; the opinions expressed in those advertisements do not reflect the views of the Champaign County Chamber of Commerce. For advertising information, contact the Chamber at 217.359.1791.


WELCOME TO THE CHAMBER >> members who joined between May 1 - June 30, 2019 Apricot Lane

Midwestern Securities Trading Company

Donna Walthall, with the help of her two daughters Erin Brodbeck and Lindsey Murphy, took ownership of Apricot Lane Boutique in Champaign in June 2019. Donna, Erin and Lindsey are all local to the Champaign-Urbana area and have a good mix of business, marketing and retail knowledge to create the perfect team to make your shopping experience great at Apricot Lane Boutique. We get to hand pick each item that is placed in our store to cater to a wide variety of ages. We provide a fun, one of a kind shopping experience. Stop in and let our staff help you find the perfect outfit for your next occasion or just relax and browse the store. We pride ourselves on customer service and are happy to help guide you through our store and keep you up to date on the latest trends. Being involved with our community is also important to us. We are a member of the Champaign County Chamber of Commerce and the Champaign Center Partnership and look forward to working with other local organizations to help support and grow the community we all call home. We look forward to providing our community with a shopping experience that will keep you coming back for more.

MSTC is an independent investment Broker/Dealer and Registered Investment Advisor. MSTC was founded in 1999 by a team of financial advisors who wanted better, more responsive service than they were receiving from other broker/dealer firms. We have been helping businesses provide employer-sponsored retirement plans to their employees for 20 years. We provide 3(38) fiduciary services to the Chamber-sponsored Multiple Employer Plan. This is a unique program available only to Chamber members that provides a highly competitive retirement plan with reduced fiduciary responsibility and liability for Chamber members’ businesses.

622 E. Green St. Champaign, IL 61820 217.260.3611 https://apricotlaneboutique.com/store/champaign/ Women’s Apparel-Retail

City of Champaign Township 53 E. Logan St. Champaign, IL 61820 217.403.6120 http://www.cctownship.com Government Offices

The City of Champaign Township is a local governmental agency that covers the vast majority of the City of Champaign. As one of the oldest forms of government in Illinois, Township government is tasked with a multitude of statutory responsibilities as well as local programs that help make the community better. The Township is led by two elected officials, Supervisor Andrew Quarnstrom and Assessor Paul Faraci. In addition, the Township employs seven full-time employees and a multitude of part-time employees. The Supervisor’s office is best described as the social service branch of local government. Programs geared to eliminate poverty, homelessness, and other social issues are just some of what the Supervisor’s office does. The Assessor is tasked with the assessment of real estate property in the City of Champaign, over 24,000 parcels, and all aspects related to that process. 4

300 E Washington, Ste. 3 East Peoria, IL 61611 309.699.6786 http://www.midwesternsecurities.com Investment Advisory Service

Orangetheory Fitness

2035 S. Neil St. Champaign, IL 61820 217.302.6500 http://orangetheoryfitness.com Exercise & Physical Fitness Programs, Health Clubs

Orangetheory Fitness is a one hour science-backed, technology-tracked, coach-inspired group workout designed to produce results from the inside out, giving people a longer and more vibrant life. We are passionately confident, vibrantly loud and energetically motivational. We participate in local volunteer opportunities, support and showcase local businesses, and look to make a positive impact in our communities. Our workouts, coached only by nationally certified instructors, provide top of the line guidance to all demographics and fitness goals. No previous exercise experience necessary! Our heart rate technology ensures that we do not over train or under train and get you the results you need. We are here to bring everyone MORE LIFE!

United Way of Champaign County celebrated their new office building in Savoy with a ribbon cutting on June 7.

Fitness Premier Champaign celebrated their grand opening with a ribbon cutting on June 26.

Apricot Lane celebrated their grand re-opening and new ownership with a ribbon cutting on June 20.

Quednau Quality Hearing, LLC, celebrated their grand opening with a ribbon cutting on June 26.

Russell Cellular celebrated the opening of their new store with a ribbon cutting on June 24.

OSF Heart of Mary Medical Center celebrated the opening of their newest URGO in Urbana with a ribbon cutting on July 10.

KleenRite celebrated the opening of their new location with a ribbon cutting on June 25.

SpotOn celebrated their grand opening with a ribbon cutting on July 23. 5

The ups and downs of operating a business in a campus town Written by: Lindsay Quick

Quite literally, operating a business in the heart of a campus town has it’s ups and downs. Businesses can see a 35-40 percent or more decrease in business throughout the summers when students are not around. How do the campustown businesses in Champaign-Urbana deal with this cyclical business climate? Most of the time, it comes down to embracing this special aspect of the community.

“This community really comes alive when everyone comes back to campus. I think that is often something that people here take for granted.” - Steve Fiala, President, D.P. Dough Preparations for the students to ascend on campus often start as early as June or July. The campustown businesses often take the later part of the summer months to start recruiting new employees, develop new marketing and social media plans and prepare for the incoming increase in foot traffic and and online business. 6

Although some of the campustown businesses tend to rely on past notoriety to drive business initially, almost all of the business on or near campus recognize that additional preparation and planning is essential to start off on the right foot with students each year. Erin Brodbeck of Apricot Lane adds, “Since this will be our first ‘back to campus’ as the new owners of Apricot Lane, we are utilizing our student staff members to give us suggestions on what types of items we need to have in stock and what items are on trend that students are currently wearing. We want to be the go-to boutique for the sororities on campus.” Although relevant in today’s world for all types of businesses, social media is crucial for campustown businesses that serves a large number of students. These businesses tend to rely heavily on online ordering and shopping. Not only is important for campustown businesses to have a visible physical presence, most find it important to supplement their foot traffic with a strong online presence as well. “At this point, most students are looking online for food options. We have to make sure we are

staying competitive with other restaurants as far as our online ordering capabilities and overall presence,” explains Steve Fiala, president of D.P. Dough.

next to us which is crazy to imagine now. That same space is now being turned into an apartment complex and the future home of Kam’s. It’s really great to be part of it all.”

In addition to the initial rush of students coming back to campus in August, certain times of year like Homecoming and home football game weekends mean even greater spikes in business.

The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign has been around since it’s founding in 1867 and won’t be going anywhere anytime soon. Regardless of a businesses physical location in the community, a certain level of awareness and thoughtfulness must be taken into account when it comes to the university.

The ability to anticipate and be prepared for those high-volume weekends often separates successful campustown businesses from those that struggle. Along with the special attention that must be given to dealing with the inlfux of customers and special event spikes, there are also a number of logistical challenges that come with being physically located near a college campus. Parking and high rent costs can often be challneging factors for campustown businesses. So how and why do businesses choose to locate themselves in the heart of campus? It’s simple — “It’s really fun to be part of campustown,” describes Fiala.

“The local and campus community is very important to us. We live here. We work here. And we have been supporters of the U of I for many, many years.” - Erin Brodbeck Apricot Lane

The businesses in Champaign-Urbana that are part of campustown embrace the ups and downs wholeheartedly. Every year, there is a whole new group of people to embrace and serve. Students choose to come to this community and the businesses that cater to these students do everything they can to make sure they enjoy their time here. Fiala adds, “When I opened D.P. Dough in 2006, there was a concrete supply company

For those actually located in campustown, embracing and preparing for the highs and lows has become almost like second-nature. Anticipation of the initial rush of students as they arrive back on campus and high-volume weekends like homecoming create a unique relationship for businesses owners. Most however, wouldn’t even consider having it any other way.


Apricot Lane

Erin Brodbeck apricotlaneboutique.com/store/champaign/ 217.344.7911

D.P. Dough

Steve Fiala President www.dpdough.com .217.365.9663

Thank you to all members that participated as experts and for the work you do to better our local workforce and community. 7

lead Champaign


Leadership Exploration and Development

OPENING RECEPTION - Papa Del’s Pizza Thursday, August 22, 4:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.

ALLERTON CHALLENGE COURSE - Allerton 4H Camp, Monticello Thursday, August 29, 1:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.

MYERS-BRIGGS TYPE INDICATOR TEST, PART I LEAD Champaign County aims to mold young professionals into strong local leaders. Participants will gain confidence, knowledge, professionalism and strong leadership skills they can bring back to their place of employment. The program is a great way to connect young professionals with their peers and build strong business relationships.

Thursday, September 5, 8:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m., (Breakfast included) Cindy Guthrie, Three Degrees of Change


Thursday, September 12, 11:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m., (Lunch included) Cindy Guthrie, Three Degrees of Change

EFFECTIVE COMMUNICATION IN THE WORKPLACE Thursday, September 19, 11:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m., (Lunch Included) Jennifer Hendricks-Kaufmann, The Carle Foundation


Thursday, September 26, 8:30 a.m. - 10:30 a.m. (Breakfast included) Local business leaders from various industries and business sizes

OUR MISSION: Attract and identify the next generation of community leaders in order to grow Champaign County.


Connect young professionals with the surrounding community through unique opportunities in the areas of service, leadership and advocacy.

Tickets provided by H-Squared Leadership Institute Friday, October 11, 8:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.

Engage young professionals to have a vested interest in the success of our community.

Thursday, October 3, 11:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m., (Lunch included) Captain Anthony Corapi, University of Illinois NROTC


Thursday, October 17, 8:30 a.m. - 10:30 a.m., (Breakfast included)


Thursday, October 24, 11:00 a.m. - 1:30 p.m. (Lunch included) Beth Reutter, Illini Training *Unless otherwise stated, events are held at the Chamber office.

Ready to lead ? Email Lindsay Quick at LindsayQ@champaigncounty.org to register or for more information.

Class size is limited. Registration includes complimentary passes to all Business After Hours and First Friday Coffees for the months of September and October so participants can strengthen their networking skills. Cost to participate in this program is $485.

8 This fee includes the Myers-Briggs & Allerton Challenge Course fees as well as all meals listed above.

Local ownership. Unmatched experience.

Left to right:

Steve Tock TreMayne Joyner Dan Marker Jan Miller Kirk Harney Bobbie Butler Chuck Eyman Chris Haile









Come Wine With Us

brought to you by the Champaign County Chamber of Commerce Agribusiness Committee Come Wine With Us celebrates Champaign County’s strong roots in agriculture and agribusiness. The event was held outdoors at Curtis Orchard and Pumpkin Patch on Thursday, June 27.

Food samples were also provided from other Chamber member restaurants including Attie’s Bar & Grill, Dish Passionate Cuisine, Holiday Inn’s State Street Grill, Sidney Dairy Barn and Sliced Right Nutrition.

A very special thank you to the 22 different Chamber members that were booth sponsors and food vendors at the event. Over 175 people attended the event and enjoyed networking, wine & beer and food samples from various Chamber member restaurants.

Attendees tried wine from Sun Singer and beer donated courtesy of Skeff Distributing.

Curtis Orchard served samples of their apple crisp donuts, apple cider and award-winning honey.


Prior to and during the event, raffle tickets were sold and one lucky winner walked away with the 60 (yes, sixty!) bottles of wine. Thank you to all of those that attended, the booth sponsors, vendors and volunteers.

Come Wine With Us Brought to you by:

Members of the

2019 Champaign County Chamber of Commerce

Agribusiness Committee


Provident Financial Group is honored to be


we have been fortunate enough to provide our services to a number of amazing clients. We look forward to meeting the needs of current and new clients in the years to come!

• Investment Services

• Retirement Planning

• Asset Management

• Trust Services

• Financial Planning

• Estate Planning

i l l i n o i s

Wine Sponsor:

Beer Sponsor:

S TA R L A S . C A R R ,



Booth & Food Sponsors:



C F P ®, A I F ®

M E L I N D A TA Y L O R ,

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11589 10th AnniversaryAd_Commerce Connection 4x10.indd 1

3/18/19 2:10


Building the Talent Pipeline Through Literacy & Numeracy Workforce development is a broad term and includes many different facets—internships, skills training, employee development and more. Literacy and math education is not often thought of as a workforce development strategy, but it is extremely important long-term strategy to the quality of an area’s workforce. The Illinois Standardized test results show an achievement gap that is not acceptable for Champaign County: Champaign Unit 4 2018 PARCC Data 3rd Grade Reading • 32% Meet or Exceed State Test 3rd Grade Math • 39% Meet or Exceed State Test We can do better. Unit 4 teachers and district personnel are doing everything they can to change this, but they simply do not have the capacity to tackle this alone. We, as a community though, do have the capability to help the future generation of the workforce to succeed by laying the foundation for reading and math education for our kindergarten and first grade students now. This is why the Champaign County Chamber of Commerce proposed an initiative to help tackle the issue with the iRead • iCount program. Several local organizations including the Champaign County YMCA, Champaign Community Coalition, WILL Public Media, Champaign County Chamber of Commerce Foundation, Martin Hood, United Way of Champaign County, Champaign Unit 4 School District and CU Schools Foundation came together to create this reading and math intervention pilot program.

Spring 2019 iRead Pilot Program Success Story This pilot program had 80+ community volunteers who spent just one hour a week, for 11 weeks, at 12

one of four Unit 4 schools working one-on-one with kindergarten students who needed help with reading. And, it produced some remarkable preliminary results: • 37% of students increased letter identification by more than double their original results • One student increasing from 4 identified to 52; a 48 letter increase • 74% was the average letter identification increase And now the iRead • iCount program is scaling-up for the fall of 2019 to address kindergarten reading and kindergarten math. We need our existing workforce to be part of the community solution to help close the achievement gap for area students. This important early learning initiative will have tremendous impact on the lives of the students served and for the community as a whole. Why Does Reading and Math Education Matter to Our Community? Up until third grade, students are learning to read. After third grade, students are reading to learn. Studies show that if a student has not learned to read by third grade, they will continue to fall behind in future grade levels and will have fewer career options. Math is a vital and necessary skill needed to succeed in the workplace and in life today. Research show that those students who do not have basic math skills by third grade, will most likely not be able to catch up, and may continue to fall behind and be faced with fewer career options as an adult. If we can help students to grasp the basics of reading and math early on, they will have a better chance to ultimately go on to have better-quality careers and become a more skilled workforce for our area companies. Beverly Baker, director of community impact for United Way, is enthusiastic about the opportunity to help in this capacity. “We are very excited about this new partnership to support young learners at Unit 4. Working together as a community we can ensure they get their education started on the right track,” Baker said.

Denise Martin, CPA and Partner with Martin Hood said “Math is everything! I know that sounds contrite coming from an accountant but think about it – without math you couldn’t measure your ingredients for a cake, figure out how to give or get change at a store or determine the best deals when shopping. More importantly, it is the building block for problem-solving and analytical skills needed in all careers, and in life, for that matter.” Due to their extensive experience working with area children, the YMCA is also a great partner in this process. “The YMCA has always been committed to developing the youth in our community and this sounded like a great fit for the employees at the YMCA. The majority of our management team have worked with children in their roles at the Y. When our team heard about the opportunity to help with literacy and math development, they were instantly excited and eager to learn more,” said Jeff Scott, CEO of Stephens Family YMCA. “We are committed to helping our great schools further the academic progress of the students in Champaign. This is a great way to support teachers, families and the children in our community. We are eager to be participating.”

Parkland College sponsors a program for adult literacy, called Project READ, which is a great complement to iRead • iCount. Tutors volunteer to help adult learners with low literacy or numeracy skills. Nearly 2.2 million Illinois residents have difficulty performing reading or math tasks or using printed or verbal information in English. Project READ wants to help change those statistics one learner at a time. For more information, contact Program Manager for Project READ, Dr. Amanda Harris, at 217-353-2662. This Parkland program, coupled with the iRead • iCount program will help members of this community have the life-long reading and math skills necessary for the modern workforce. This ensures a higher quality of life for all and a better environment for the students of the future. To help Champaign County to be an economically thriving community, the Chamber and our partners are committed to establishing a pipeline of skilled workers through this long-term workforce development strategy.


In order to build on the initial success of the pilot program, this fall the iRead • iCount program will need almost triple the number of volunteers to spend one hour a week to work one-on-one with students who need the most help with reading or math. Volunteers will work with up to four students for a one-hour time slot each week. The volunteers will be able to select the school and time that works best for them. The main objective will be to help students develop the skills necessary to build a firm foundation for learning in reading and math. The learning and activity curriculum is age-appropriate and all volunteers will be trained to help students master the fundamentals of reading and math which was developed by Unit 4 literacy and math specialists. “The Community Coalition is pleased to be a partner and supporter in the iRead • iCount program,” said Tracy Parsons, facilitator for Champaign Community Coalition. “Innovative initiatives and with strong community partnership are critical in enhancing student academic success. We must do all that we can to support our future leaders.”

Can we COUNT on you? Volunteer for the fall program now at



Growing Business One Idea At a Time There are many reasons a person might choose to open their own business. For Alejandra Rangel, the reason was plain and simple: she believed others should have a better travel experience than she did. “The travel agents I used didn’t know anything about the destination. They just sold me tickets. Needless to say my dream vacation was left unfulfilled,” explains Alejandra. Travel is all about the experience. Those booking trips have to trust that the person helping them book their trip has knowledge of the area and will give them the best vacation possible. This is something that Alejandra was confident she could do for people.

I needed help learning how businesses operate here. Thankfully I was told about the Business Advisors’ Council (BAC). They taught me the ins and outs of the American business system. They helped me write a business plan, learn the differences between business structures, the need for good accounting, legal aspects of contracts and more. Alejandra Rangel

However, not being from the USA created some challenges when it came to starting Hola Destination Management.

Alejandra elaborates, “I needed help learning how businesses operate here. Thankfully I was told about the Chamber’s Business Advisors’ Council (BAC). They taught me the ins and outs of the American business system. They helped me write a business plan, learn the differences between business structures, the need for good accounting, legal aspects of contracts and more.” 14

With the help of BAC, Alejandra launched Hola Destination Management, a professional service company specialized in planning, coordinating and organizing customized incentive trips, corporate meetings, special events, themed parties, weddings, retreats, conferences or product launches. Alejandra works with clients to create unique experiences for individuals and groups when traveling to amazing destinations in Mexico. She has over 15 years of experience working with international and local suppliers which helps her ensure the best service within the available budget. With each client, Alejandra makes it her goal to design the perfect program for each one offering extremely detail-oriented costumer service.

Alejandra explains, “We know where and how to find the best entertainment, food, tours, transportation services, activities and travel routes for the best price and the best quality. At Hola Destination Management the goal is to take the headaches out of vacation planning. It just doesn’t make sense for individuals to try and make arrangements long distance with unknown people.� Alejandra successfully launched her business venture in March of 2019. Hola Destination Management is now a full-service travel agency specializing in trips to Mexico, specifically to Tijuana, Valle de Guadalupe, Los Cabos and Teotihuacan. BAC is committed to helping entrepreneurs like Alejandra start and continue growing their businesses. Counselors come from a variety of different backgrounds and have knowledge in a number of different industries.

Looking to start or grow a business? BAC is here and ready to help every step of the way. Learn more at www.champaigncounty.org/ business-advisors-council or call Matt Bradley at 217.359.1791.

A top partner for your bottom line. We promise to partner with you to help you manage your growing business. At Busey, we understand the unique challenges and circumstances you face. Our team has extensive experience working with a large range of specialized industries, allowing us to propose new ideas and proactive solutions to help you meet your needs and reach your goals.

busey.com 217.365.4500

Member FDIC


Grand Award Awards for Communications Excellence

ACCE’s Awards for Communications Excellence program is designed to showcase top communications and marketing work of chambers of commerce and similar organizations. Several thousand award entries have been submitted since the launch of the organization’s Awards for Communications Excellence, which is now in its thirty-fourth year. The Champaign County Chamber of Commerce was given the Grand Award for their entry, Dr. Roger’s Neighborhood, which creatively demonstrates the value of the chamber and highlights some of the past year’s accomplishments by parodying the popular children’s show, Mr. Roger’s Neighborhood. The award-winning entry included the video which premiered at the Chamber’s annual meeting on November 2, 2018 as well as accompanying marketing materials and event decorations.

The Champaign County Chamber of Commerce was awarded a Grand Award in Communications Excellence by the Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives (ACCE) at the annual convention in Long Beach, California on July 15. The Alexandria, Va.-based association represents more than 8,000 chamber of commerce professionals and 1,300 chambers of commerce, around the world. A panel of communications and marketing professionals from five U.S.-based chambers of commerce evaluated entries, which were organized by category — based on the chamber’s annual budget — and entry type: advertising and marketing, campaigns, digital and publications. The Champaign County Chamber of Commerce was selected as one of ten Grand Award finalist out of over 160 submissions.


L I M I T O N E D I S C O U N T P E R C U S T O M E R P E R V I S I T. E X P I R E S 1 2 / 3 1 / 1 9.

Located in Lodgic Everyday Community |


PUBLIC POLICY UPDATE The Illinois General Assembly wrapped up their work for Governor JB Pritzker’s first legislative session as governor. Hundreds of bills were passed by the legislature and over one-hundred bills were actually signed by Governor Pritzker. Here is a quick roundup of major legislation passed in 2019:

While this issue may come up again in the next year, your efforts directly lead to stopping this bill.

• The legalization of recreational cannabis

Tobacco 21 – Beginning July 1, 2019, it became unlawful to sell tobacco products, including “vape” and e-cigarettes to individuals under the age of 21.

• $40,000 annual minimum wage for teachers • $45 billion capital investment plan that includes a gas tax increase and vehicle registration fee increases • $40 billion budget • Should Illinois voters amend the constitution to allow for a graduated income tax, the General Assembly passed what the new rates would be requiring online stores and warehouses to pay state sales tax • An increase to the cigarette tax and allowing for Chicago, Danville and downstate casinos • Legalized sports betting • An apprenticeship tax credit • An extension of the Research and Development Tax Credit • The elimination of the franchise tax • Requiring corporate boards to file annual reports on their racial, gender and ethnic make-up • A pay raise for state legislators The Chamber of Commerce alerted our membership about a bill introduced by a local representative that would inject partisan politics into Champaign County’s courts. The bill passed the House of Representatives and we requested our members contact Senator Scott Bennett to request stopping the bill in the Senate. The Chamber received feedback that many members contacted Senator Bennett. We would like to thank you for advocating for our community. Because of your efforts, the bill was successfully stopped in the Senate.

While many of the bills passed will take effect in 2020 there are some new laws going into effect July 1, 2019. These new laws include:

Daily Pupil Attendance – Pupil attendance at public schools will count if a student is in a college course instruction while still enrolled in high school, supervised career development experience, youth apprenticeship program or participation in a blended learning program. Smoking in a car with a minor – Should this bill be signed, it will be unlawful for any individual to smoke in a car with a minor in the car. Driving taxes/fees – As part of the revenue to pay for the $40 billion capital and infrastructure bill, Illinois’ gas tax doubled to $0.38 cents per gallon. Renewal for driver’s license and license plate fees doubled. Electric vehicles increased from $35 every two years to $250 annually. The Illinois Secretary of State will allow driver’s licenses to be renewed one year in advance of expiration and will renew license plates that expire before 12/19/2019. Texting while driving – No warnings will be issued for texting while driving. The first offence is a moving violation with a $75 fine, increasing to $100, $125 and $150 for subsequent offenses. Under the Illinois Vehicle Code, three moving violations within a 12-month period results in a driver’s license suspension without discretion.


MEMBER ACCOLADES & NEWS JARLING’S CUSTARD CUP Jarling’s Custard Cup was named one of the “Absolute Best Ice Cream Shops in America” from the NBC news program, TODAY. Jarling’s has been around in some form since 1949. Business was so slow in the beginning that the owners played cards while waiting for customers! Today, they don’t have that problem. Jarling’s Custard Cup is so busy that it now has a drive-thru. Jarling’s uses dairy from Midwestern farms and, unlike other custards, it doesn’t have egg yolks as an ingredient. It’s made on site, in small batches throughout the day. While there are only a few flavors — vanilla, chocolate, lemon and strawberry are always on hand — customers can add Jarling’s signature “cold fudge” or make a “snowstorm.” SERVPRO OF CHAMPAIGN/URBANA SERVPRO of Champaign/Urbana received the FOUNDER’S Silver award at SERVPRO’s recent 50th Annual Convention. The event, themed “Making History,” was held from June 24-28 at the Sacramento Convention Center in Sacramento, California, where the company was founded. The company’s 50th Annual Convention was a celebration of the company’s history and a showcase of small business best practices and cutting-edge restoration and remediation technology. The event featured a variety of workshops and group sessions ranging across 37 different topics. Attendees gained knowledge and hands-on experience to help them build and grow their businesses and strengthen ties with both residents and businesses in their local communities. Highlights of the convention included a keynote address by motivational speaker Jon Gordon and an awards ceremony recognizing the achievements of top-performing franchisees. COMMUNITY BLOOD SERVICES OF ILLINOIS Community Blood Services of Illinois is creating a volunteer Associate Board in Champaign-Urbana. We invite our fellow professionals and organizations in the community to nominate candidates and invite applicants. Please note all nominated candidates must complete an application. The objectives of the Associate Board will include building networks and awareness of the Blood Center, increasing the Blood Center’s volunteer network and donor base, and supporting special 18

events in the community. Please visit the Associate Board webpage for further details: https://www. bloodcenter.org/community-outreach/associateboard.aspx. For questions and concerns please contact Ginny Heiser at gheiser@mvrbc.org or 217531-0713. The Associate Board will offer opportunities to build networks, gain professional development and create new initiatives. We will be building this board from the ground up with your help! We look forward to working with you and changing the world, one pint at a time. ILLINOIS AMERICAN WATER Illinois American Water announced Roger Goodson, senior operations manager for Illinois American Water’s Western Division, will now also provide leadership in the company’s Eastern Division of the state, effective July 8, 2019. In addition to managing operations in Illinois American Water’s Peoria, Pekin and Lincoln Districts, Goodson’s expanded leadership role will include providing oversight in the Champaign County, Pontiac, Sterling and Streator Districts. Goodson joined Illinois American Water in 2011 as an operations superintendent in Pekin. In 2012, he was promoted to overseeing both Pekin and Peoria operations, and, in 2015, he became senior manager of the Western Division. Prior to joining Illinois American Water, Goodson was director of operations for a large site development company and senior project manager for many affordable housing construction projects. He began his career in the water industry in 1992 with the City of Aurora, where he worked for over 14 years. LANZ HEATING & COOOLING, INC. Lanz was recently awarded the “Top Performing Dealer in Residential Sales for Ductless Systems” by Trane. Michael Savage, Comfort Consultant, was presented with the Top Performing Residential Sales Professional in 2018 Award. Michael was the second highest in sales in Missouri, Iowa and Illinois out of 200 dealers for Trane.

MARINE BANK Two new members joined the Marine Bank Board of Directors in June. The new board members are as follows: Jenny H. Park is a shareholder at the law firm Meyer Capel in Champaign, where she has practiced since 2002. Jenny earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Illinois UrbanaChampaign and a juris doctorate from the Indiana University School of Law. Jenny’s practice is concentrated in commercial and residential real estate and land use and development law. Robert W. Kay is a CPA who recently retired after a long and successful career in hospital administration. In March, Bob retired after eighteen years as Chief Financial Officer of Memorial Health System. In his role at health system, Bob was responsible for external reporting, risk management, general accounting and financial planning. HL PRECISION MANUFACTURING, LLC HL Precision Manufacturing, LLC (HL) with facilities in Champaign and Fisher, Illinois, and Hi-Grade Welding & Mfg, LLC (Hi-Grade) based in Schaumburg, Illinois, announced their combination by way of the creation of a common parent company to be known as H3 Manufacturing Group, LLC. Both HL and Hi-Grade will continue to operate individually while seeking ways to work together collaboratively to provide broader manufacturing solutions to each company’s customer base. The combination of HL and Hi-Grade will provide both companies the opportunity to leverage their respective capabilities across the industries they serve. HL’s precision CNC machining, assembly and paint and powder coating capabilities complement Hi-Grade’s laser cutting, fabrication and complex welding. There is effectively no overlap in customers between the two companies. The companies combined will serve a broad range of industries, including aerospace/defense, medical devices, power transmission, automated retail, life sciences and public transportation. While both companies bring strong, tenured management teams, the most important aspect each company brings is a shared culture of operational excellence and relational integrity with their customers, employees and suppliers.

i3 BROADBAND i3 Broadband, has proudly received numerous 2019 Internet Provider Awards from consumer internet search service, BroadbandNow. i3’s Residential and Business Services both received winning rankings and recognition in the following categories for “Mid-Sized” service providers: • Top 2 Fastest Internet Providers Nationwide • Top 3 Fastest Fiber Providers Nationwide • Top 3 Customer-Rated Fiber Service Nationwide • Top 3 Customer-Rated Business Fiber Service Nationwide • Top 5 Customer Approval Rating Nationwide • Top 10 Customer Rating for Business Service Nationwide Have news to share with the local business community? Tell us about it and get featured in the Chamber’s next Commerce Connection. Email Lindsay Quick with your news, LindsayQ@ champaigncounty.org, or submit the news via our website: www.champaigncounty.org/news/

new additions to the chamber board: LINDA DIFIORE,

Silgan Closures Human Resources Manager


Clark-Lindsey Village President & CEO

Welcome and thank you for your service. 19

thank you sponsors & Golfers! The 2019 Chamber Golf Outing sponsored by Napleton’s Auto Park of Urbana was held at Stone Creek Golf Club in Urbana on June 6, 2019. This year, the event SOLD OUT both hole sponsorships AND golfers. We had 30+ raffle prizes, great contests, company and more. Attie’s Bar and Grill generously provided lunch and dinner for all golfers and volunteers. Thank you to CIBM Bank for sponsoring the hole-in-one contest. Clark-Dietz sponsored golf carts for the golfers and access to the putting green was sponsored by ServiceMaster DSI. All golfers were also given a golf ball courtesy of Legacy Roofing and Restoration and Lodgic Everday Community provided a hospitality tent. Congratulations to our first place finishers, Andy Weaver, Scott Johnson, Ryan Murphy and Wade Hoey and to our second place finishers David Keenan, Vilma Howard, Jackson Aaberg and Jon Snow. Awards for longest putt, longest drive - women, longest drive men and closest to the pin were also given out at the outing.

Presented by:

With support from:

For the first time ever in the history the Chamber’s golf outing, a hole-inone was made on the designated contest hole. Bill Walter, president of A&R Mechanical Contractors, Inc. sunk the hole-in-one earning him over $11,000 in prize money. Thank you to all that were involved in making the 2019 Champaign County Chamber of Commerce Golf Outing a huge success - we could not have done it without.

Congratulations to our first-ever Hole-In-One Winner Bill Walter President, A&R Mechanical Contractors, Inc. 20

Congratulations to our first PLace winners Andy Weaver, Scott Johnson, Ryan Murphy and Wade Hoey


LK4 Technology Corp.


A&R Mechanical Contractors ACE Hardware - Neil St. Advance Services Inc. Adept Concept Solutions Attie’s Bar & Grill Busey Champaign County Forest Preserve District Champaign Park District / Virginia Theatre CIBM Bank Coldwell Banker Commercial Devonshire Realty First State Bank

Flora Gems Girl Scouts of Central Illinois Gulf Plains Energy Hamilton Walker’s IVme Wellness + Performance Krannert Center Lodgic Everyday Community Merry Maids Outback Steak House Prospect Bank Reynolds Towing Sliced Right Nutrition Spherion Staffing Services Stone Creek Golf Club 21



An exclusive benefit of Chamber membership, we sell mailing labels containing the names and addresses of Chamber member businesses for the purpose of member-to-member communication. Target the local business community. Two lists are available for purchase:

From monthly First Friday Coffee and Business After Hours to our annual Golf Outing, the Chamber hosts a number of events each month. By sponsoring a Chamber event, your business obtains great exposure not only at the event itself, but also within all promotional materials (emails, mailings, e-newsletters, Commerce Connection, website, etc.). Here’s what’s coming up:

Long list (approx. 2,000 names and businesses): $175 Short list (approx. 900 names and businesses): $125

• Come Wine With Us: Booth sponsor - $250 fee Food Vendor - $100 deposit

Contact Stephanie Smith-Jeffries at StephanieS@champaigncounty.org


Our electronic newsletter is sent to nearly 2,000 businesses and businesspeople in Champaign County each week. Sponsor an e-Connection and get your business seen by thousands. Header sponsorship (one week): $100 Contact Lindsay Quick for more information, LindsayQ@champaigncounty.org


With over 400 unique views PER DAY to the Chamber website, you’ll have the opportunity to reach thousands of customers each month. With pricing starting at just $300 this affordable and effective.Contact Lindsay Quick at LindsayQ@champaigncounty.org


Do you have a new product, service or information you would like to share with our entire Chamber membership? Take advantage of this exclusive offer to send broadcast emails to our entire nearly 2,000 email list.



This is a bi-monthly publication that is distributed to over 2,000 businesses and businesspeople in Champaign County. Content varies, but is always relevant to local business. There are a variety of ad sizes available. Ads start at only $90. Ask about the exclusive cover package that allows your business to gain exposure before the reader even opens the publication. Contact Lindsay Quick for more information, LindsayQ@champaigncounty. org or 217.359.1791.


For a great price, place an ad in every email that is sent out of the Chamber office. That’s an average of over 12,000 emails per week. The best part? Link the footer wherever you would like. Footer (one week): $75 Contact Lindsay for details at, LindsayQ@champaigncounty.org

Email Blast Advertisement: $500 Contact Lindsay Quick for more information, LindsayQ@champaigncounty.org

Additional information for events available upon request. Contact LindsayQ@champaign county.org or call 217.359.1791 with any event sponsorship inquiries.


Rental of laptop computer; conference space and LCD projector; Certificate of Origin; Notary service; information, assistance and resources.

Reach thousands on a small budget. 22


Enhance your listing on the Chamber’s online business directory. The directory gets hundreds of thousands of views each day-turn your standard (complimentary) listing into an eye-catching, search engine optimized advertisement. Basic upgrade: included w/membership Enhanced Listing: $79/year Contact Lindsay Quick for more information, LindsayQ@champaigncounty.org

calendar of events Business After Hours

Thursday, August 15 4:00 - 6:00 p.m. Napleton’s Auto Park of Urbana 1111 Napleton Way, Urbana


Monday, August 19 Noon - 1:00 p.m. Neil St. Blues 301 N Neil St Suite 106, Champaign

LEAD - Opening Reception Thursday, August 22 4:00 - 6:00 p.m. Papa Del’s Pizza 1201 S. Neil St., Champaign

Chamber Office Closed Monday, September 2 Labor Day

LEAD - Myers-Briggs, Part 1 Thursday, September 5 8:30 a.m. - Noon Chamber Office 303 W. Kirby Ave., Champaign

First Friday Coffee

Friday, September 6 7:30 - 9:00 a.m. Chemical Maintenance, Inc. 1100A W. Bloomington Rd., Champaign

LEAD - Myers-Briggs, Part 2 Thursday, September 12 11:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m. Chamber Office 303 W. Kirby Ave., Champaign

BSSS: Strategic Business Goals Made Easy Presented by Sandra Jones, SandraJones.me Tuesday, September 17 8:30 - 10:00 a.m. Chamber Office 303 W. Kirby Ave., Champaign

LEAD - Effective Communication in the Workplace

Thursday, September 19 8:30 - 10:30 a.m. Chamber Office 303 W. Kirby Ave., Champaign

Business After Hours

Thursday, September 19 4:00 - 6:00 p.m. Adam’s Outdoor Advertising 1711 Dobbins Dr., Champaign

LEAD - Leadership Panel Thursday, September 26 8:30 - 10:30 a.m. Chamber Office 303 W. Kirby Ave., Champaign

Fast Facts

3.5% Champaign County Unemployment Rate in May 2019

26 business licenses applied for in Champaign County in June 2019


June 2019 U of I Flash Index for Illinois


rides were taken on CUMTD in April 2019

3,818 visits to the Chamber’s page, champaigncounty.org in June 2019

2,005 number of unique searches on the

Champaign County Chamber of Commerce Online Business Directory in June 2019

2014 The year that the Champaign County

Chamber of Commerce was named the Illinois Outstanding Chamber of the Year

Experience Simply Better Banking 14/6 Drive Up Hours Hours Days

Jason Burgener Branch Manager NMLS ID 1147138 jburgener@fsbcorp.com

As branch manager, I strive to ensure our customers receive an exceptional First State experience!

303 West Kirby Avenue Champaign, IL 61820 P 217.359.1791 | F 217.359.1809 www.champaigncounty.org Windsor & Neil St.





AR-MECH.com 711 E Kettering Park Drive Urbana, IL 61801 24

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