Commerce Connection November/December 2017

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CONNECTION Give the gift of choice this holiday season. Learn more on pg. 14

p u b l i c at i o n b u s i n e s s - to - b u s i n e s s

Whats Insid

PG. 11 - 2017

Permit No. 29 Champaign, IL


Presorted Standard US Postage

C h a m pa i g n C o u n t y ’ s

t ru s t e d

Pg. 10 - Ann

PG. 13 - 2017


ual meetin

g recap

by the num b


Des Moines InterCity V isit Recap

pg. 15 - 2017


Volume 24 | Issue 6


20 than





holiday shopping o u t lo o k

There’s a unique financial solution for every business.

We’ll help you find yours.

Happy Holidays Champaign County Banking Centers: Champaign • 2229 South Neil • 359-9837 Champaign • 913 West Marketview • 378-8023 Urbana • 601 South Vine • 367-8451 Mahomet • 502 East Oak • 318-3750

To learn more about First Mid or to see a complete list of locations, visit us online.


Member FDIC • Equal Opportunity Lender

303 West Kirby Avenue Champaign, IL 61820 P 217.359.1791 | F 217.359.1809

FY18 TOP INVESTORS TOP INVESTORS GOLD Busey SILVER Carle University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign BRONZE A & R Mechanical Contractors Amdocs BankChampaign, N.A. Christie Clinic First Mid-Illinois Bank & Trust Health Alliance Hickory Point Bank & Trust Midland States Bank Presence Covenant Medical Center

IN-KIND CONTRIBUTORS 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 Stevie Jay Broadcasting - Q96-96.1FM, US105.9, Sunny 95.3 & ESPN 93.5 PRESIDENT’S CIRCLE NewsTalk 1400 WDWS, Lite Rock 97.5 WHMS, Classic Hits 107.9 WKIO

CHAMBER STAFF Laura Weis President & CEO Mindy Cain Director of Workforce Readiness & Member Relations

Awards, Ltd. Blossom Basket Florist Dish Passionate Cuisine Hyatt Place LongHorn Steakhouse TrophyTime W.K. Cooper II Asset Management Corporation

Stephanie McCullough Director of First Impressions

Dustin Haake Membership Sales Director

Lindsay Quick Graphic Design and Marketing Director

Garret Hill Public Policy Director

Ariel Short Events & Programs Director


Jeff Baker Company

Chip Craddock Clark Dietz, Inc.

Kyle Emkes

Dodd & Maatuka

David Farrar

Illinois American Water

Gary Hackler 150 PERCENT CLUB

Caryn Isenhower Accounts Receivable & Office Administrator


Zachary Hillard Busey

R.J. Hynds English Brothers Company

Tonya Horn Rogards

Susan Jepsen

Reynolds Towing Service, Inc.

Pradeep Khanna

Chuck McReaken

Chair, TSM Ventures, Inc.

Dr. Jared Rogers

University of Illinois

First Vice Chair Presence Covenant Medical Center

Kurt Lenschow

Mike Estes

State Farm

Jim Lyons

Birkey’s Farm Store

Justin Overstreet

Second Vice Chair Fisher National Bank

Dan Kirby

Treasurer, CliftonLarsonAllen

Martin, Hood, Friese & Associates, LLC

Becky Preston

Rod Roberts

Laura Weis

Thunderstruck Design

Julianna Sellett

Past Chair, Busey

Secretary, Champaign County Chamber of Commerce


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 September 1 and October 31, 2017 Altorfer Rents-Champaign

808 W. Bradley Ave. Champaign, IL 61820-2525 217.239.0744 Contractors’ Equip. & Supplies-Renting & Leasing

BGP Business Solutions, Inc. 441 N. Park Blvd., Ste. 3B Glen Ellyn, IL 60137-4649 630.544.0400

Business Consultants

When it comes to locating a reliable source for construction equipment needs, you’d be hard pressed to find a more comprehensive and trustworthy rental supplier. We provide the broadest and deepest product and service line in the industry, but what we’re really proud of is the way we do business. As a locally owned business, we’re accountable and accessible to our customers. We do business with total honesty and integrity. Our customers know it from experience, and we have the Better Business Bureau Torch Award to prove it. At Altorfer Rents, we put people first, and that starts with our dedicated team of highly engaged employees. It is our goal to provide a superior sales and rental experience. We achieve this by supplying quality products and peerless support. When you have a challenge that stands in your way, we have the broad capabilities and “can do” attitude to find the most efficient solution to get the job done.

Bruce Povalish founded Rapid Funding Corporation in 2002 for the sole purpose of helping people and businesses gain access to private capital in the marketplace. As a true business consultant, Bruce witnessed firsthand the difficulty and frustration of clients who needed to improve their cash flows due to growth or even survival concerns. His first job out of college was with the largest international CPA firm in Chicago. Specializing in the “private business consulting” practice of the firm, Bruce worked closely with small and medium-sized business owners on tax, audit and consulting matters. After public accounting, Bruce formalized his career in the retail automotive and retail services industries. In 2016, Bruce combined two of his companies and formed BGP Business Solutions. Also an adjunct professor at Roosevelt University Chicago, he teaches small business topics. Bruce will be moving his successful practice to the Champaign area in 2018.

ATI Physical Therapy

CKL Engineers, LLC

ATI is a privately held, nationally recognized healthcare company, specializing in outpatient rehabilitation and adjacent healthcare services. ATI Physical Therapy provides high quality care, personalized treatment plans, exceptional results, and a hands-on approach to physical therapy and sports medicine. Initial evaluations/ appointments with all ATI clinics are scheduled within 24-48 hours, and early morning and evening hours are available to accommodate patient schedules. Rehabilitation services include manual therapy, therapeutic exercise, strength training, cardiovascular conditioning, sports-specific training, and therapeutic modalities, such as ultrasound and electrical stimulation. ATI offers complimentary injury screenings, plus accepts virtually all major insurance carriers. Please visit for a complete list of clinic locations and services.

Mae Whitehouse is the Founder & CEO of CKL Engineers, LLC. Founded in 2009, CKL Engineers, LLC is in its eighth year practicing traditional civil engineering, construction management services on major infrastructure projects such as airports, local roads, tolls, water & natural gas pipeline infrastructure. In her role as CEO, my focus is primarily on developing and maintaining client relationships. Whitehouse is a trained civil engineer from the Illinois Institute of Technology and is licensed in the State of Illinois. Her technical capabilities are in civil engineering inspection, resident engineering, construction contract administration, transportation planning and safety studies, and design plan development.

1806 N. Market St. Champaign, IL 61822-1312 217.356.4920 Physical Therapists

108 S. Neil St. Champaign, IL 61820-4910 773.439.0519 Engineers-Professional


217.549.6590 Computers-Software & Services ForNoJo, L.L.C., is an international interpersonal technology development entity headquartered in Champaign Illinois, specializing in consumer, business and mobile application development at scale.

Holiday Inn Express & Suites

946 Broadmeadow Rd. Rantoul, IL 61866-2129 217.892.9100 Hotels The brand-new Holiday Inn Express & Suites Rantoul is located just 10 minutes north of Champaign-Urbana, directly off of Interstate 57. The 74-room hotel features rooms and suites that includes a refrigerator, microwave, Keurig coffee maker, hair dryer, and in-room safes. Guests may take advantage of the full hot breakfast serving everything from scrambled eggs, biscuits and gravy, pancakes, and much more. Guests may also enjoy our indoor swimming pool, hot tub and fitness room. For your meeting needs, our boardroom accommodates up to 25 people. Whether you’re looking for that local negotiated rate, scheduling a meeting, kids’ sports tournaments or wedding parties, we’re happy to host your group, event or business hotel needs.

ATI Physical Therapy and 217 Immediate Care held a joint ribbon cutting on September 27 to celebrate their grand openings.

U-Haul Moving & Storage at Southgate celebrated their grand opening with a ribbon cutting on October 17.

Hoveln Heating & Cooling, Inc. 903 N. Church St. P.O. Box 596 Thomasboro, IL 61878-0596 217.643.2125 Heating Contractors

Hoveln Heating and Cooling has been serving East Central Illinois family’s heating, cooling and plumbing needs for four decades and three generations. Known as the area’s most experienced geo thermal installer and service company, we take pride in the fact that we stay on the cutting edge of technology and offer Bryant, WaterFurnace and Mitsubishi energy efficient equipment. We service all makes and models and have planned maintenance agreements for any kind of equipment including hot water boilers. As a bonus we also install Nu-Wool cellulose insulation, and our plumbing staff can repair, replace, or install a new plumbing fixture in your home or business. With dependable service, competitive rates, and trained NATE certified professionals we’d like to be the company you call when a problem arises or you need service.

The Legends Apartments celebrated the groundbreaking for their new apartment complex on November 8

Visit Champaign County celebrated the opening of their new office with a ribbon cutting on November 8.

HuHot Mongolian Grill 902 Meijer Dr., Ste. 4 Champaign, IL 61822-1237 217.954.1495 Restaurants

HuHot Mongolian Grill is a bold, exciting oasis offering a different restaurant concept. We are a create-your- own stir fry restaurant that offers over 60 ingredients and 12 Signature Sauces. Trips to the grill are unlimited so you can try all of them ranging from our mild Samurai Teriyaki to our hottest Khan’s Revenge. Watch while our skilled Grill Warriors cook your creation on our gigantic round grill! Start the battle off right with our hand-made Krab Rangoons and end the conquest with our Sweet Victory S’mores. Carry-out is also available. Our hours are 11 am to 9 pm Sunday through Thursday, and 11 am to 10 pm on Friday and Saturday. Stop in and conquer bland and your hunger!

Illini Fire Equipment

2801 N. Lincoln Ave. Urbana, IL 61802-7229 217.367.9521 Fire Extinguishers-Commercial & Industrial Illini Fire Equipment is a locally owned family business serving central Illinois since 1957. We sell and service portable fire extinguishers and kitchen suppression systems. Founded in Urbana, our main office remains at its original location on North Lincoln Avenue. Our growth has added locations in Bloomington and Robinson, Illinois as well. We are members of both the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) and the National Association of Fire Equipment Distributors (NAFED). In 2017, Illini Fire Equipment was certified as a Woman Business Enterprise by the Illinois Department of Central Management Services. We are a doublediamond distributor of ANSUL, a leading manufacturer in the fire equipment industry. Our service team is fully trained and licensed to provide all services for your fire protection equipment. We have products for any hazard in residential, business, and industrial environments.

Psychology Specialists

2500 Galen Dr., Ste. 104 Champaign, IL 61821-7038 217.693.6072 Psychologists Since opening in 2002, Psychology Specialists has grown to offer a multitude of evaluations and therapies to patients of all ages. With offices located throughout Illinois and more than 35 clinicians on staff, we are equipped to handle all of your psychological needs. In 2009, Psychology Specialists created a new division,

the Child & Family Wellness Institute (CFWI) with providers dedicated to working with children, adults and families. We have several providers to offer therapy interventions including psychotherapeutic counseling, behavioral management and planning, play therapy and family/couples interventions. Our providers conduct comprehensive psychological assessments for a variety of needs including ADHD, autism spectrum disorders, pain evaluations, and academic testing. Our goal is to improve quality of life through specialized treatment, personal interaction and confidential care to help you and your family achieve optimal health.

Rantoul Area Chamber of Commerce 120 E. Sangamon Ave. Rantoul, IL 61866-2369 217.893.3323 Chambers of Commerce

The Rantoul Area Chamber of Commerce serves ten+ communities outside of the Rantoul village limits. We advocate and provide support for businesses/individuals in Thomasboro, Gifford, Dewey, Ludlow, Paxton, Fisher, Armstrong, Potomac as well as Urbana and Champaign. Our Chamber is very active and inclusive and we believe in our mission statement that the chamber is not a department of government, a political body or a public relations agency but instead that a chamber is an economic development organization that has a major impact on business, income and future growth of the area.

Sunspire Health Heartland

1237 E. 1600 North Rd. Gilman, IL 60938-6112 815.707.2121 Drug Abuse & Addiction-Information & Treatment Sunspire Health Heartland is a treatment facility located on 33 acres of sprawling farmland about two hours south of Chicago. It offers individualized, patient-centered care for adult men and women suffering with addiction and cooccurring mental health disorders. We offer an evidencebased approach to substance use disorder treatment, meaning that all therapy methods used have been proven to effectively treat addiction. The warm, country-style accommodations provide a calming environment that is ideal for healing. With 36-beds available to patients and a generous staff-to-patient ratio, each individual who comes to Heartland seeking treatment will receive personalized care from compassionate addiction treatment professionals who are experts in the field. The program is genderseparate to cater to the specific needs of both men and women while providing patients a safe space to address underlying trauma related to their substance use. Receiving treatment at Sunspire Health Heartland will pave a clear path to lifelong recovery from addiction and give patients the tools necessary to maintain sobriety for life.


2504 N. Propsect Ave. Champaign, IL 61822 248.865.0900 Telephone Communication Services Wireless Vision, LLC., currently operates more than 450 T-Mobile-branded retail stores nationwide -- making the company the largest T-Mobile Exclusive Partner in the country. Established in 2004 and headquartered in Bloomfield Hills, MI., Wireless Vision is dedicated to providing the best service and products to its employees and customers.

Travel by Beth, LLC

HuHot Mongolian Grill celebrated their opening with a ribbon cutting on November 28.

P.O. Box 605 St. Joseph, IL 61873-0605 217.649.1572 Travel Agencies & Bureaus

Travel by Beth, LLC Champaign 3808 W. Springfield Ave., Ste. D Champaign, IL 61822-8806 217.649.1572 Travel Agencies & Bureaus

Travel by Beth has seven agents and two offices in Champaign County and is a full-service travel agency specializing in our clients. Our goal is to exceed your expectations and create memories more powerful than any gift. We believe that the travel experience provides an incredible opportunity to connect with your spouse, your family and your friends. Our agency does not charge fees for our service and we will meet or beat any pricing that you may see with online booking engines. We are an advocate for you from the time of booking through travel completion.

U Haul Moving & Storage at Southgate 2010 S. Philo Rd. Urbana, IL 61802-8006 217.903.4803 Storage-Household & Commercial

U-Haul Moving & Storage at Southgate is located in south Urbana. This conveniently located U-Haul facility has many available storage units including drive up storage, interior/climate controlled storage, storage lockers and even U-Box portable storage containers. We work directly with local neighborhood dealers within the city of Urbana where you can rent moving trucks as well as cargo/utility trailers.

Countryside School celebrated their 25th anniversary on December 1.

We Come in All Shapes... and we’re not talking about your body.

Do you identify as a square? Or perhaps you’re more of a circle? In her newly developed program, human resources expert Cindy Guthrie relates different styles of communication to corresponding shapes in order to explain how people communicate and interact with each other. Join your fellow Leading Ladies for this enlightening workshop and learn how you can better communicate in your day to day life. Cocktails and appetizers will be provided.

Thursday, January 11 4:00 - 6:00 p.m.

2018 ATHENA Award速 Sponsored by:

Save the Date:

Thursday, February 15 Nominate someone today! The recipient of the ATHENA Award速 demonstrates excellence, creativity and initiative in his or her business or profession; provides valuable service by devoting time and energy to improve the quality of life for others in the community; and assists women in reaching their full leadership potential. The ATHENA Young Professional Award速 is given to an emerging leader who strives toward the highest levels of personal and professional accomplishment and serves as a role model for young women. This award is sponsored by past recipients of the ATHENA Award速. Nomination forms may be found on our website at For more information or if you have questions, please contact Ariel at or call 217.359.1791.


Laura Weis, President & CEO Named the 2017 Chamber Executive of the Year by the Illinois Association of Chamber Executives On Thursday, November 2, 2017, Laura Weis, President & CEO of the Champaign County Chamber of Commerce, was awarded The Distinguished Illinois Chamber of Commerce Executive Award the Brann Award. The award began in 1991 to recognize the exemplary performance and leadership of an Illinois chamber executive within their local chamber, community and to the chamber profession. The award is named in honor of Lester W. Brann, Jr., CCE, the first recipient of the award and past president of the Illinois Chamber of Commerce. The award recognizes the long-term professional career achievements of the candidate. Criteria to be evaluated includes experience, training and education, service to IACCE and other professional organizations, service to Chamber colleagues, ethical conduct in dealing with others, a highly developed sense of professionalism, leadership and an abiding desire to advance the profession of Chamber management. Cited in the letters supporting her nomination included her leadership in developing a strategic community partnership called Champaign County First - a public private/partnership focused on economic development initiatives critical to Champaign County’s success; the formation of a political action committee as a Chamber subsidiary to support business friendly candidates and to pass critical referendums such as government reform (countywide executive initiative); the Chamber’s work on workforce readiness as one of the founding entities in the Champaign-Urbana Cradle to Career (CUC2C) movement; and, partnering with two peer Chambers to be the first entities to launch an association-based electricity cooperative when Illinois deregulated. The Champaign County Chamber’s co-op has saved the Champaign County business community millions of dollars since its inception.

Ms. Weis’ professional and community involvement includes: • Graduate of Institute for Organizational Management (IOM Designation through the US Chamber of Commerce) • Certified by the Illinois Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives (ACE) • The Champaign County Chamber of Commerce was the first recipient of IACCE’s Chamber of the Year Award in 2014 • 2013 Green Meadow’s Girl Scout Woman of Distinction in Business • Champaign West Rotarian, Active volunteer for the Champaign Central High School Archery Program, Governance Committee for Willard Airport, Advisory Council for Willard Airport, Steering Committee for Champaign-Urbana Cradle to Careers (CUC2C), Co-facilitator for the Workforce Readiness Group of CUC2C; Social Committee of Champaign West Rotary • Appointed member of the Illinois Women’s Advisor Council by former Comptroller Leslie Munger • Past Board Member of: IACCE, ACCE (National Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives), United Way of Champaign County, Eastern Illinois Foodbank (Vice Chair), Champaign West Rotary Ms. Weis stated, “Success does not happen alone. In my years with the Chamber, I have always been blessed with an outstanding board of directors who have always understood their role. They have provided guidance and oversight while always allowing me to do my job. And over the years, this Chamber has always had and continues to have an exceptionally talented staff that does all the heavy lifting. The combination of the board leadership and the talented staff now and over the years has only put me in a position to shine. There are so many talented Chamber leaders in Illinois, it is humbling to know that my nominators felt I was worthy to be recognized as one of them.” The Illinois Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives was established in 1915 as a resource to serve Chambers of Commerce and their staffs across the state. Their mission is applying the highest standards, IACCE supports the development of the Chamber profession by creating opportunities for growth and recognition.

2017 annual Meeting The Annual Meeting was held on October 27 at the Hilton Garden Inn. 322 members attended and helped celebrate another incredible year.


Habitat for Humanity & ReStore of Champaign County was named the 2017 Small Business of the Year at the event. Habitat believes in the elimination of poverty housing and they strive to help families achieve decent, affordable housing ultimately transforming lives and strengthening the community. They represent a unique business model that brings retail, home construction and financial management under one roof. They have been serving low-income households throughout Champaign County for 25 years. Over the last three years Habitat’s home construction has increased by more than thirty percent and sales at the Habitat ReStore have increased by twenty-one percent with annual growth revenues of over $800,000. “Habitat has grown to be a valuable economic generator in our community. Their efforts have stabilized neighborhoods, led to growth in our tax base and most importantly created a healthy living environment for homeowners throughout the community,” explained Dorothy David, city manager for the City of Champaign.

AT & T BankChampaign, N.A. Busey Carle Christie Clinic EpiWorks, Inc. First Financial Bank First Mid-Illinois Bank & Trust

Martin, Hood, Friese & Associates, LLC Midland States Bank Monsanto Parkland College Presence Covenant Medical Center Regency Multifamily Rogards

SPECIAL THANKS TO: Home2 Suites by Hilton Jonathan Drake, Illini Radio Group / Mix 94.5 Tim C. Anderson Media Production

FY18 Board Chair, Chuck McReaken, outlined what the Chamber is working on in 2018 including the Chamber’s upcoming strategic planning. The Chamber will continue to focus on serving it’s members and helping them thrive and grow. The meeting concluded with entertainment from mentalist Brent Webb who wowed the audience with his illusions and mind tricks. Once again, the Chamber Annual meeting was a success. Thank you to all of our sponsors and to all of those who attended this year’s Annual Meeting.





The Chamber’s retention rate in FY17.

number of Chamber members

We are ready to launch now with confidence and the Chamber’s strategic research program was chief impetus to that.


Business connections made at Chamber networking events in FY17.


Amount of money members saved through the energy co-op in FY17.

- John Rollins, Central Illinois Produce







Chamber staff rating for customer service from a member survey.


Leaders trained through the ACE Leadership Program making a difference in the business community.


Business friendly candidates elected to office through the Chamber PAC.

“The speaker elaborated just enough with ideas and delivered all sorts of value in a short period of time. Excellent job Chamber.”

” $263,748 - Marlene Bonilla, Something You Salon & Spa

Amount of money reallocated to the county through the Chamber’s

Local Purchasing Challenge.


(and done!)

Number of times the Chamber and the PAC attempted to pass the

County Executive initiative.


connections made at Connect@Lunch in FY17.


HR professionals recruited by the Chamber to assist high school students prepare resumes for the Summer Youth Employment Program.


Entrepreneurs who have been counseled by the Business Advisors’ Council (formerly SCORE).


Congratulations to Bailey Edward Design, Inc. for receiving the 2017 Excellence Award from the American Institute of Architects.


Congratulations to Jim Miller for being named the vice president - agriculture/commercial lending at First Mid-Illinois Bank & Trust.


Paul Gilmet recently joined the Rosecrance team as its Alumni Coordinator. Paul will work closely with Fr. Jim Swarthout in developing a new and robust menu of alumni services.


Midland States Bank announced that David Noble, its Community Development & CRA Officer, was elected to the Board of Directors for Housing Action Illinois, a statewide coalition formed to protect and expand the availability of quality, affordable housing throughout Illinois.


Congratulations to Countryside School for celebrating their 25th anniversary.


Meyer Capel Law Firm announces the addition of Travis J. Quick to its litigation practice. Mr. Quick will concentrate in business and commercial litigation. He has fourteen years of business and commercial litigation experience, having practiced in Chicago and Wichita, Kansas. He has also worked as an in-house litigation attorney for a large privately-held diversified manufacturing company.


REALTOR® Jeffrey Barkstall, GRI, broker with Century 21 Heartland Real Estate-Champaign is the 2017 REALTOR of the Year for the Champaign County Association of REALTORS®. Barkstall received the award at the CCAR annual awards banquet on October 27 in celebration of the Association’s 100th anniversary.


Congratulations to Silgan Closures for winning the 2017 Illinois Sustainability Award.


Coldwell Banker Commercial Devonshire Realty is pleased to announce the addition of Richard Harrington as a property management/brokerage assistant in their Champaign office. Richard joins Coldwell Banker Commercial Devonshire Realty after previously working for RKF in Chicago where he supported the brokerage team on both tenant and landlord representation assignments. They also announced the addition of Ryan Murphy, CCIM, as a commercial real estate broker in their Champaign office. Ryan joins Coldwell Banker Commercial Devonshire Realty after previously working for Fox Development Corporation in Champaign where he served as their Director of Real Estate & Construction.


John M. Snyder, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer for the Carle health system, has been named President and Chief Executive Officer of Health Alliance Medical Plans. He will continue to serve as System Chief Operating Officer, responsible for all hospital and clinic operations, as well as ancillary businesses of the Carle health system.


Rosecrance recently hired Lisa Abrams as the new Executive Director at the Lakeview Recovery Home. Abrams has worked in the field of addiction treatment and mental health since 2002 and began as a psychiatric technician. Abrams is a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor and Certified Supervisory Alcohol and Drug Counselor responsible for oversight and management of day-to-day operations of Rosecrance services in Chicago. She is also a Certified Intervention professional and a member of the American Mental Health Counseling Association. She earned her M.A. in Professional Counseling from Argosy University and her B.A. from DePaul University. 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,, or submit the news via our website: membership/member_accolades.aspx

2017 Des Moines InterCity Visit Champaign County First, a privatepublic partnership, went on an economic development and educational intercity visit to Des Moines, IA. The delegation, which was made up of 20 local leaders, included both mayors of Champaign and Urbana, planning and economic development professionals from local governing bodies, the Village of Rantoul, Visit Champaign County, Regional Planning Commission, and private sector representation. This economic development educational experience included learning about the Des Moines Partnership. The Partnership markets themselves as the fourth largest Chamber of Commerce in the United States with 23 local Chambers, 6100+ local members and 320+ investors with a commitment to investing and promoting their community. They have a $7 million budget that is 80 percent funded by the private sector. The private sector drives economic development for their community. The delegation was welcomed by Des Moines Mayor Frank Cownie and Tiffany Tauscheck, the Partnership’s chief communications officer. Highlights of the agenda included learning about the partnership’s economic

development model and how they crafted the proposal that landed Apple in the Midwest; discussion on how Des Moines has been successful with their startup culture; how they created and built momentum for downtown development that includes food, culture and the arts; their talent (workforce) attraction, retention plans that are preparing the pipeline for new talent. The delegation also rode the D-Line, Des Moines’ no user fee public transportation to tour the downtown. The biggest take-away from the trip was learning how Des Moines has been a leader in regional collaboration and community development. In addition to the agenda, the Champaign County delegation had the opportunity to tour the Meredith Corporation (publisher of Midwest Living magazine) and meet with the leaders of the Greater Des Moines Airport to discuss the economic impact of airports on a community. The delegation returned to Champaign County eager to keep the momentum from this economic development trip going to help grow our community.

You need a bank that’s local, experienced and invested in central Illinois

Jan Miller Bobbie Butler Dan Marker Steve Tock Toni Delporte Chuck Eyman Kirk Harney

Three out of three isn’t bad.


Invest in the community

that has invested in you.

KEEP YOUR DOLLARS LOCAL: SMALL CHANGE. BIG SHIFT. 89 percent of consumers said they believe that small businesses contribute positively to their local communities.* 93 percent of consumers believe it’s important to support the local small businesses that they value in their community.* Small business has a big economic impact. As a Champaign County community member, you can contribute to that impact. Shopping local is more than just spending money to support the business community. It means investing in those that have invested in you; that have invested in Champaign County. Locally owned companies recirculate more of its revenue directly to residents and businesses in their community. Keeping dollars in our community means increased jobs and economic activity that leads to greater tax revenue and a stronger economy to support others. Empowering and enabling local companies to capture a bigger share of their local and regional markets can provide significant benefits to the local economy.

As part of our efforts to support the many small businesses in Champaign County, we have a program aimed to keep dollars local. It is the Commerce Card, the only local program of its kind. The Commerce Card is the gift card that supports shopping local. We all know gift cards are a great gift for those difficult family members, friends, coworkers or even last minute gifts, but what about a gift card that guarantees your dollars stay right here in Champaign County? The Commerce Card does exactly that. It can be purchased for any denomination from the Chamber and spent at any local participating business in the county. If you’re a business owner who has invested in the local community, the Commerce Card is a great option for employee gifts and incentive programs. Thank and/or reward your employees; support other Chamber member businesses and keep your hard earned dollars local with the Commerce Card.

*Statistics from the American Express OPEN Small Business Saturday Consumer Pulse in 2011.


Nails Salon

Elegant and Affordable Complete Professional Nail Care and Spa for Men & Women

217-954-0500 1711 W. Kirby Ave. Champaign, IL 61821

Mon-Sat 9:00am-7:00pm Closed Sunday

(inside Old Farm Shoppes next to Subway)

Gift Certificates Available

appointment & walk-ins welcome

Businesses Currently Accepting the Commerce Card:

Members can start accepting the Commerce Card at any time. For the most up-to-date list of participating businesses, visit

2017 Holiday Shopping Outlook Holiday shopping can be overwhelming for consumers and retailers alike. Each year it seems that shopping begins ealier and earlier. Many stores eager to get a jump start on holiday sales have begun opening for Black Friday sales on Thanksgiving day. Some stores have even extended their “Black Friday” sales to the entire week leading up to Thanksgiving. Although Black Friday has become the unofficial beginning of the holiday shopping season, consumers continue shopping throughout the month of December. “Christmas falls 32 days after Thanksgiving this year, one day more than last year, and is on a Monday instead of Sunday, giving consumers an extra weekend day to complete their shopping,” points out Ana Serafin Smith in an article for the National Retail Federation (NRF). The economic climate of 2017 has been steady allowing consumers to feel comfortable heading into the holiday shopping season. In fact, the National Retail Federation expects holiday retail sales in November and December (excluding automobiles, gasoline and restaurants) to increase between 3.6 and 4 percent total. Holiday spending has been consistently increasing since the economic recession of 2008.

“Consumers continue to do the heavy lifting in supporting our economy, and all the fundamentals are aligned for them to continue doing so during the holidays.” - Jack Kleinhenz, Chief Economist, National Retail Federation

Across the board, consumer spending looks to stay consistent with past trends. According to the NRF, “most consumers say they will spend about the same amount as last year.” However, reports from the NRF show that young adults (18-24 years old) are the most likely sector to increase spending. “As Gen Z and Millennials get older their purchasing power increases and the rise in their disposable income is sure to be seen by retailers,” adds NRF president and CEO Matthew Shay.

Overall, data and forecasts for this holiday season provide a positive outlook for retail businesses looking to capture consumer spending during this chaotic time of year. Those looking to increase sales should be sure to pay special attention to younger emerging demographics that now have the means to make an impact.

SAVE THE DATE: 2019 BOOKING DAY MARCH 5, 2018 Beginning at 9:00 a.m. Interested in hosting a First Friday Coffee or Business After Hours? These events give you great exposure to the business community - don’t miss your chance to host. Reservations will be taken on a first call, first serve basis via phone call ONLY. No walk-ins, emails or early phone calls will be accepted.

To book your First Friday Coffee or Business After Hours for 2019

Call Lindsay at 217.359.1791





Renew your membership today. Contact Caryn at or call 217.359.1791

Small business is big business.

We promise to keep your business successful and nimble. 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. 217.365.4500

Member FDIC

Cham ber Sto re Mailing Labels

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:


Long list (approx. 2,400 names and businesses): $175 Short list (approx. 1,000 names and businesses): $125

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.

Contact Caryn Isenhower to order, or 217.359.1791.

Header sponsorship (one wk.): $100

Email Blast Advertisement 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. Email Blast Advertisement: $500 Contact Lindsay Quick for more information, or 217.359.1791.

Commerce Connection

This is a bi-monthly publication that is distributed to over 2,400 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@ or 217.359.1791.


Contact Lindsay Quick for more information, LindsayQ@ or 217.359.1791.

Website Marketing With over 7,000 visits/month to the Chamber website, this is where you want to be. Market your business to locals and those looking to move and/or visit here. Want more information? Contact Lindsay Quick at

Event Sponsorship

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.). We have numerous opportunities throughout the year, here’s what’s coming up: • Breakfast Series - $1,000 per breakfast February 8 (available) • March 8 (available) • April 12 (available) • Golf Outing Title Sponsorship - $3,000 (only 1 available)

Email Footer Sponsorship

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 wk.): $75 (Add footer to the e-Connection for an additional $50.) Contact Lindsay for details at, or 217.359.1791.


Additional information for events such as Business Success and Solutions Seminars is available upon request. Contact ArielS@champaign or call 217.359.1791 with any event sponsorship inquiries.

Online Business Directory Enhancements 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

Value upgrade: $20/year

Deluxe upgrade: $50/year

Contact Lindsay Quick for more information, or 217.359.1791.

Complimentary services: rental of laptop computer; conference space and LCD projector; Certificate of Origin; Notary service; information, assistance and resources.


calendar of events Chamber Office Closed: • Monday, December 25 • Tuesday, December 26 • Monday, January 1 • Tuesday, January 2


Monday, February 12 Noon - 1:00 p.m. Giordano’s 2000 N. Neil St., Champaign

ATHENA Luncheon

Leading Ladies Communication Workshop

Thursday, February 15 11:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m. Champaign Country Club 1211 S. Prospect Ave., Champaign

Thursday, January 11 4:00 - 6:00 p.m.

Business After Hours

Thursday, January 18 5:00 - 7:00 p.m. Carriage Crossing - Champaign 1701 Congressional Way, Champaign


Monday, January 22 Noon - 1:00 p.m. Giordano’s 2000 N. Neil St., Champaign

First Friday Coffee

Friday, February 2 7:30 - 9:00 a.m. Heyl, Royster, Voelker & Allen, P.C. 301 N. Neil St., Ste. 505, Champaign

February Breakfast Tips for Measuring Online Success

Presented by Dave Delaney, Google Representative

Thursday, February 8 7:30 - 9:00 a.m. Stone Creek Country Club 2600 S. Stone Creek Blvd., Urbana

4.2% Champaign County Unemployment Rate in October 2017

38 business licenses applied for in Champaign County in November 2017

First Friday Coffee

Friday, January 5 7:30 - 9:00 a.m. Express Employment Professionals 1001 N. Mattis Ave., Champaign

Fast Facts


Sponsored by Spherion Staffing and Busey Wealth Management

Business After Hours Thursday, February 15 5:00 - 7:00 p.m. U of I Willard Airport 11 Airport Rd., Savoy

First Friday Coffee

Friday, March 2 7:30 - 9:00 a.m. Cunningham Children’s Home 1301 N. Cunningham Ave., Urbana

Booking Day 2019 Business After Hours & First Friday Coffee Monday, March 5 9:00 - 11:00 a.m. *Phone calls only. No walk-ins or emails will be accepted. Bookings will be taken on a first call, first serve basis.


November 2017 U of I Flash Index for Illinois

1,077,219 rides were taken on CUMTD in November 2017

5,116 visits to the Chamber’s page, in November 2017

10,414 average amount of referrals PER DAY the

Champaign County Chamber of Commerce Online Business Directory received via search engines and online sources in November 2017

2014 The year that the Champaign County

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

Business After Hours

Thursday, March 15 5:00 - 7:00 p.m. Clark-Lindsey Village 101 W. Windsor Rd., Urbana


Monday, March 19 Noon - 1:00 p.m. Giordano’s 2000 N. Neil St., Champaign

303 West Kirby Avenue Champaign, IL 61820 P 217.359.1791 | F 217.359.1809



RELIVE THE ICE AGE 217-367-4227 711 E Kettering Park Drive Urbana, IL 61801




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