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OCT/ NOV 2012





What CU thinks, p. 3


Presorted Standard US Postage

C h a m pa i g n C o u n t y ’ s

Preparing students to

Permit No. 29 Champaign, IL

t ru s t e d

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





Volume 19 | Number 5

Shop the Chamber Store,


Commerce Connection/

VIEWPOINTS In our mock election - we opted to see who the Champaign County business community would vote for if they were to vote a month prior to the elections, here’s what we found:


What would you consider the most important issue currently facing the nation? “Reinstating the role and responsibilities of citizenship.” “The economy. Our country is on the brink of an economical collapse if we do not address the problems we are facing.” “Drastically improve the economy and foreign policies which place the US in a world leadership position.” “Finding a way for politicians to work towards goals together. The country is suffering because parties completely nullify and refuse to negotiate on presidential initiatives.” “Becoming a welfare nation…the murder of the ‘American Dream.’”

75% voted Romney

22% voted Obama

Three percent of survey participants voted “other” or elected not to respond. WILL YOU VOTE IN THIS YEAR’S ELECTION? Yes 98% No 1% Not sure 1% DO YOU PLAN ON VOTING EARLY THIS YEAR? Yes 21% No 71% Not sure 8%

HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR PAST VOTING RECORD? Never vote 2% Vote occasionally 1% Vote half the time 1% Usually vote 22% Always vote 75%

What issues are most important to your business in this year’s local election? “Improving infrastructure and getting public employee unions and associated pension costs under control.” • “Raising the minimum wage proposed by Quinn, increase in taxes, proposed sin taxes.” • “State facility closures.” • “State and local tax rates.” • “Getting better representation in Springfield.” • “The economy.” • “Be aggressive in developing a business atmosphere that will attract all kinds of businesses including clean manufacturing. Also, the airport – what an embarrassment business leaders and education leaders must fly into an airport 60 miles away. We have the facility, but not the leadership.” • “Building Illinois’ reputation as a good economical state, not run by crooks.”.......... continued on page 26...

“Jobs. Too many are sent overseas or don’t pay a living wage. We need to quit making it profitable for employers to send manufacturing jobs overseas and we need to have our service jobs pay living wages. Job retraining and education are key.” “Economy. Our monetary system will collapse without getting a grip on our fiscal problems, including incentives towards success and paying down the deficit.” “War & economy.” “Deficit. Too much government interference in private business. Too much government, period.” “Moral character and economic growth.” “Energy development. We should drill, drill, drill. This would help the economy in many ways and end our dependence on the Middle East.” “There has been no budget for 3.5 years. Unbelievable. Get a budget. Balance it.” “Repealing Obamacare.”


Gold Busey Carle Presence Health

Silver BPC, Inc. University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

303 W. Kirby Ave. Champaign, IL 61820 P: 217.359.1791 F: 217.359.1809 www.champaigncounty.org chamber@champaigncounty.org

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

Karly Combest Event & Programs Manager KarlyC@champaigncounty.org

Nikolle Keeney Marketing & Graphic Design Manager NikolleK@champaigncounty.org

Michelle Luna Membership & Advertising Services Manager MichelleL@champaigncounty.org

Lynette Lykins Director of First Impressions LynetteL@champaigncounty.org

Christopher P. Sheppard Membership Development Director ChristopherS@champaigncounty.org

Paul Orama Public Policy Manager PaulO@champaigncounty.org

Norma Wesley Administrative Support & Reservationist NormaW@champaigncounty.org

FINANCIAL SERVICES Provided by CliftonLarsonAllen

Bronze A&R Mechanical Contractors Amdocs BankChampaign, N.A. Christie Clinic First Bank First Mid-Illinois Bank The Hilton Complex Kraft Foods, Inc. Supervalu Inc. Champaign Distribution Center University of Illinois Employees Credit Union Walmart Supercenters


Chairman’s Circle Illini Radio Group - MIX 94.5, WIXY 100.3, 92.5 The Chief, WIXY Classic 99.1, True Oldies 97.9, Extra 92.1 NewsTalk 1400 WDWS, Lite Rock 97.5 WHMS, U-Rock 107.9 SJ Broadcasting Chamber Circle WICD ABC NewsChannel 15 Fox 27 Illinois/ WCCU TV Business Circle Adams Outdoor Advertising

150 PERCENT CLUB Cooper Asset Management


Beth Auterman

Michael Wozniak

Diane Ruedi

Chair, Advanced Filtration Systems, Inc.

First Vice Chair, Livingston, Barger, Brant & Schroeder

Bill Walter

Second Vice Chair, A&R Mechanical Contractors

Treasurer, CliftonLarsonAllen Past Chair, FE Moran Alarm & Monitoring

Laura Weis

Secretary, Champaign County Chamber of Commerce

BOARD OF DIRECTORS Joe Alexander Mark Ballard

BankChampaign, N.A.

Mike Billimack Carle

Mike Brown

Provena Covenant Medical Center

Mike DeLorenzo University of Illinois

Stephen Flynn

Candlewood Suites

Perry Green

Cindy Guthrie YG Financial

Kurt Lenschow, State Farm

Dale Morrissey

Developmental Services Center

Dennis Riggs FIX-IT

Rod Roberts

Roberts Design Company, Inc.

Chris Shroyer Busey Bank

Stone Creek Golf Club

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.

Commerce Connection/


pathway to


CU Scholars / CU Schools Foundation Article by Allison Copenbarger Vance, Chamber Editorial Assistant

It was May and Ottmers was attending the Freshman Focus, a program run by the CUScholars program that aimed to encourage young students to succeed. “When he said that to the students, I was really touched,” Ottmers said. “Students don’t always realize that.”


anet Ottmers, VP of HR at Horizon Hobby, was at Parkland College among a sea of impressionable young students. She sat back as local football star, Nathan Scheelhaase, spoke to the students. “You’re going to have choices to make in high school and there are always going to be people that are going to try to get you to make the wrong choices,” Ottmers remembers he said. “Don’t do that. That will have a lasting impact.”

The event was just one portion of CUScholars – a program run by the CU Schools Foundation – that aims to better prepare Champaign-Urbana’s students. Officially launched in the spring of last year, the program is offered to every high school student. The students who choose to participate are held to a high standard – a rigorous academic schedule, 80 hours of volunteer service, attendance of 95% or better and participation in summer programs and a financial literacy class. While the program does ask much of its participants, organizers say it is in the students’ best interest to work hard and participate. “It used to be that a high school diploma was enough,” said Gail Rost, CUSchools Foundation Executive Direc-


(continued from previous page...)


tor. “These days it’s not, and our kids are finding that out the hard way.” The program, which currently has more than 600 kids enrolled, was started in response to the difficulties facing recent high school graduates. Champaign-Urbana’s graduation requirements are above state standards. But many graduates, even those going into trades, found they could not find a job after graduating from high school with only a high school diploma.



Exceptional customer service is critical to every business. Learn what it takes to give your business the “cutting edge”.

Tuesday, November 6 - Two sessions in one day!

“The public was surprised how poorly graduation standards prepare our children,” Rost said. “It was observed by those actually getting kids through the system.”

presented by:

In addition to preparing kids academically, the program also aims to help students develop “soft skills,” and to help them build relationships in the community. Rost said 90% of local graduates stay in Illinois with a large majority of people staying in the Champaign-Urbana area. Rost said essentially the program is helping to develop the local workforce.

MORNING SESSION: 8:30 TO 11:30 A.M. Part 1: Attitudes for Services

Several local businesses have partnered with the program including Herff Jones, Busey Bank and Ottmers’ organization, Horizon Hobby. As the person in charge of hiring for the company, Ottmers said a program like CUScholars is invaluable to students. “If every student were a part of CUScholars, we’d get graduates who knew the importance of coming to work every day, being on time and making better choices,” Ottmers said. “We don’t need everyone to have college degrees necessarily, but we need people who make good decisions.” To Ottmers, apart from helping the students in the community, it will also help businesses in the future. “Every business should support CUScholars,” Ottmers said. “It’s in all of our best interests.” Right now the program is offered to students beginning in 8th grade, but the ultimate goal is to start students in kindergarten. Rost said achieving this goal is going to require the community’s support. “The potential benefits are outstanding, but it’s new and it takes time,” Rost said. “Right now it’s not readily apparent, but we want to capture peoples’ imagination of what it could be. We are looking for local businesses to jump in.”

The foundation of creating a customer service culture is understanding expectations, going the extra mile and being a customer advocate. At the end of this session, participants will be able to asses customer services attitudes, understand how to build customer relations, manage their own attitude and use conversational language to keep interactions low pressure.

Part 2: Complaint Resolution

In this session, participants will be able to explore the variety of causes of complaints, identify ways to neutralize negative attitudes and follow a process that deals with both the emotional and rational elements of compaints. Participants will create approaches to maintain their own positive attitudes, even when dealing with difficult people and issues.

AFTERNOON SESSION: 1:30 TO 4:30 P.M. Part 1: Manage Customer Expectations

Your business has far more potential to develop lasting relations and future business by managing customer expectations ina realistic way. In this session, participants will learn how to assess the expectations of their customers, manage customer expectations in order to exceed them and utilize a customer expectations mangement process.

Part 2: Telephone Skills -- Inbound and Outbount

This session will help participants identify small changes that can make a big difference in customer service. At the end of this session, participants will be able to develop confidence in telephone interactions, apply human relations to deal with difficult customers and use an information gathering module to both understand customer needs and create favorable attention.

The cost to attend one session is $57 for members/ $74 for non-members. The cost to attend BOTH sessions is $99 for members/ $129 for non-members. All sessions will be held at the Champaign County Chamber of Commerce, 303 W. Kirby Ave., Champaign. Email NormaW@champaigncounty.org to register or call 217.531.4669.

Commerce Connection/ 7

WELCOME TO THE CHAMBER >> members who joined between july and august 2012 Advantage Auto Sales

Michael Noe 915 W. Bloomington Rd. Champaign, IL 61821 217.355.2323 mnoe@advantageautosales.com www.advantageautosales.com Automobile Dealers – Used Cars

All About Animals Pet Clinic Dr. Joella Koss 2012 Tin Cup Rd. Mahomet, IL 61853 217.586.4477 aaapetclinic@gmail.com aaapetclinic.com Veterinarians

All About Animals Pet Clinic is a full service veterinary clinic offering Western medicine as well as Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine including acupuncture, chiropractic, and herbal therapy. Dr. Joella Koss, who was born and raised in Champaign County, received her DVM degree from the University of Illinois. She decided to open All About Animals Pet Clinic after realizing that she could provide more complete pet care being the practice owner of an integrative veterinary medicine practice, rather than following a purely traditional medicine route. All About Animals Pet Clinic focuses on offering superb client service by providing hour-long inclinic appointments, house calls and equine farm calls.

All Foam Insulation

Amy Johnson P.O. Box 268 Sidney, IL 61877 (217) 202-2481 afinsulation4u@yahoo.com www.afinsulation.com Insulation Contractors – Cold & Heat All Foam Insulation is a family owned business with a combined construction and laborer experience of more than 20 years. We use two-pound closed cell

polyurethane insulation to stop moisture and air infiltration for all seasons. This type of insulation is energy efficient and environmentally friendly.

Altman’s Billiards & Barstools

Karen Altman 1006 N. Cunningham Ave. Urbana, IL 61802 217.365.9056 karen@altmansbilliards.com www.shopaltmans.com Billiard Equipment Supplies – Sales & Service Furniture Dealers – Retail Spas & Hot Tubs – Dealers Altman’s Billiards & Barstools have everything needed





Sam’s Club in Champaign held a ribbon cutting for their recent remodel on August 17, 2012.

Kemper CPA Group LLP held a ribbon cutting ceremony for their new location on August 23, 2012

to create a cozy home for anyone’s furnishing needs. They carry full lines of furniture for every room; specializing in game room furniture, kitchen barstools and dinettes, pool tables and bars, and home theater sofas and consoles. They also carry outdoor patio furniture as well as hot tubs and accessories. They have locations in Bloomington and Urbana.

Bacon Farmer Workman Engineering & Testing, Inc. Phillip Holthaus 505 W. University Ave., Ste 224 Champaign, IL 62182 217.433.1272 pholthaus@bfwengineers.com www.bfwengineers.com Engineers – Geotechnical Engineers – Professional

Bacon Farmer Workman Engineering & Testing, Inc., provides complete engineering design services which include: civil, structural, transportation, geotechnical and environmental. Services also include surveying and laboratory services consisting of construction materials testing and inspections. The lab is AMRL-AASHTO R18 certified and is validated by the Army Corps of Engineers. The firm strives to achieve the aesthetic and functionality goals

of each client with sensitivity and imagination. They believe good design is conceived and developed by dedicated, individualistic professionals who are leaders in their area of endeavor.

Binny’s Beverage Depot Stuart Stowe 802 W. Town Center Blvd. Champaign, IL 61822 217.355.0625 champaign@binnys.com www.binnys.com

Boltini Lounge

Robb Tobias 211 N. Neil St. Champaign, IL 61820 217.378.8001 info@boltinilounge.com www.boltinilounge.com Bars & Taverns Caterers Restaurants Boltini Lounge is a long-time watering hole on the Neil Street Strip in Downtown Champaign. Boltini offers a great selection of liquor, food, music and fun. The back bar of Boltini is stocked with a selection of distilled spirits. They have everything from small batch bourbons, single malt scotches, fine wine by the glass to a

huge selection of vodkas and gins. An extensive martini list (nearly 100) has something for nearly every taste. Their selection of craft beers from around the world is ever-changing. Boltini’s food menu offers an impressive selection of small plates, sandwiches, flatbread pizzas, salads, tacos, and desserts are available.

Bratcher Heating & Air Conditioning

Brian Houchin 2802 Hundman, Ste. B Champaign, IL 61822 brianh@bratcher-online.com www.bratchercomfort.com Air Conditioning Equipment & Systems Air Conditioning Repairs Heating Contractors Bratcher Heating, A/C & Geothermal, Inc. is a full-service HVAC company, providing 24-hour service and installations in both existing homes and new construction. They specialize in residential, light commercial and multi-family and serve all heating, air conditioning and service needs. The extensive list of customers includes individual homeowners, builders, property management companies, architects and businesses of all sizes.

Commerce Connection/ 9



Ichiban Buffet held a ribbon cutting for their grand opening on August 27, 2012.

Elite Bridal held a ribbon cutting and reception to celebrate their grand opening on August 29, 2012.

Champaign Gymnastics Academy Ian Dennehy 219 S. Mattis Ave. Champaign, IL 61821 217.398.3740 ian@champaigngym.com www.champaigngym.com Gymnastic Instruction

The mission at the Champaign Gymnastics Academy is to provide all athletes, competitive and recreational, with high quality gymnastics instruction in Champaign-Urbana. All programs are based around developing the core skills and values associated with gymnastics at all levels; skills such as physical fitness, motor development, strength, flexibility, as well as the values of education, self-esteem, selfdiscipline, and work ethic. They offer classes to children of all ages, starting with children 6 months all the way up to adult gymnastics classes.

Complete Nutrition

2000 N. Neil St., Ste.106 Champaign, IL 61820 217.355.1447 champaign@completenutrition.com www.completenutrition.com Complete Nutrition is a nutritional supplement retail store. Their goal is

to help each customer look better, feel better and perform better every day. Started in 2004, Complete Nutrition is now one of the fastest-growing franchises in the nation. The stores strive to eliminate the clutter and high pressure sales environment of typical nutritional supplement stores and instead focus on giving customers the best experience and results for the money. To that end, Complete Nutrition stores employ certified personal trainers, former strength coaches and other experienced fitness professionals in order to best assist customers in developing personalized nutrition programs. Complete Nutrition also works with various health care providers, nutritionists and chemists to develop the highest-quality formulations for supplements.

Discount Tobacco Ware House

Tonya Riggs 1722 W. Bradley Ave. Champaign, IL 61820 217.355.5699 dtwchampaign@att.net Cigar, Cigarette Tobacco Dealers – Retail Discount Tobacco Ware House is a new business in Champaign. It is owned by a former member of the

WARECO family of gas stations, Tom Ware. The chain consists of 13 stores located across Illinois and Missouri. The business offers low tobacco prices and a large selection of tobacco while offering exceptional customer service. This will be the companies ninth new store location in the past year.

Elite Bridal

Kaitlin Mennenga 106 S. Country Fair Dr., Ste. B Champaign, IL 61821 217.363.3200 info@elitebridalshop.com www.elitebridalshop.com Bridal Shops Elite Bridal brings a fresh perspective to the bridal store experience. Located at 106 S Country Fair in Southwest Champaign, the 6,000 sq foot store provides elegant looks for brides, bridesmaids, mothers, and flower girls. They have many features throughout the store, including a bridesmaid lounge and a bridal runway, which aim to create memorable experiences. They provide updated information on their Facebook page.

Engineering Resource Associates, Inc. Jake Wolf 3002 Crossing Ct.



CU Woodshop Supply, Inc. held a ribbon cutting to celebrate the opening of their School of Woodworking on September 18.

Discount Tobacco Ware House celebrated the grand opening of their new Champaign location on September 21, 2012.




Champaign, IL 61822 217.351.6268 jwolf@eraconsultants.com www.eraconsultants.com Engineers - Professional Engineering Resource Associates, Inc. (ERA) is a full-service consulting engineering, environmental science and surveying firm serving Midwestern clients. With offices located in Champaign and Warrenville, they have grown to provide services in transportation, structural design, forensic engineering, infrastructure, water resources, commercial and residential development, environmental services, recreation, construction, and surveying and mapping. The professional staff includes licensed professional and structural engineers, environmental scientists, surveyors, technicians, and support personnel. They are committed to providing high quality consulting engineering services to build and sustain long term relationships with a diverse clientele.

Energy Alliances

Brad Liegel 515 Sheridan Evanston, IL 60202 513.794.5555 memberships@energyalliances.com www.energyalliances.com Energy Management & Conservation Consultants

99 LuxuriouS guESt roomS 217-352-9970 www.champaignurbana . Stayhgi .com

98 ExtEndEd Stay SuitES 217-352-9960 www.champaignurbana . homEwoodSuitES .com

indoor pooL & Spa, cozy bEdS, ovErSizEd FitnESS cEntEr, FLat ScrEEn tELEviSionS 18,000 Sq. Ft . oF banquEt and mEEting SpacE . compLimEntary airport ShuttLE

Energy Alliances, Inc. was established in 1986 in Cincinnati, Ohio and provided energy studies throughout the Midwest, including energy audits for non-profit organizations in conjunction with Cincinnati Gas and Electric. EAI became agents for Integrys Energy Services in early 2000 and have been leaders in the aggregation marketing effort in Ohio since 2005. Energy Alliances maintains over 100,000 accounts and can provide both electric and natural gas products to help stabilize energy costs for home owners

Commerce Connection/ 10



Midland States Bank officiated the construction of their new building with a ground breaking ceremony on September 28.

A Ride to Remember Limousine Service celebrated their grand opening with a ribbon cutting ceremony on October 1.

and businesses in Ohio and Illinois.


cindywang814@yahoo.com.cn Restaurants - Chinese

Adrian Fortino 202 E. Huron St., Ste. 101 Ann Arbor, MI 48104 734.223.3051 info@flocktag.com www.flocktag.com Marketing Programs & Services

Island Bridal Travel, Inc.

FlockTAG brings big company marketing technology to small business. By creating the first of its kind, FlockTAG’s Intelligent Loyalty Network is helping local restaurants and cafés better compete by offering a more desirable solution to attract new customers and earn more from existing patrons. FlockTAG has combined the benefits of a high-tech universal loyalty/reward card, plus personalized deals delivered through a mobile app. Created by a small business owner, for small business owners, FlockTAG is designed help alleviate the sizable disadvantage small businesses have compared to large chains.

Jarro Designs Floral Studio

Ichiban Buffet

Anne Pan 105 N. Mattis Ave., Ste. D Champaign, IL 61821 217. 398.5650

Jennifer Wayland 2134 County Rd. 1800 E. Urbana, IL 61802 217.202.3406 romance@islandbridal.com www.islandbridal.com

Julie Odum 707 W. Main St. Mahomet, IL 61853 217.722.9998 jarrodesigns@gmail.com www.jarrodesigns.com Wedding Supplies & Services

Jarro Designs Floral Studio offers artful floral displays for weddings or special events/parties throughout Champaign County and Central Illinois. Jarro Designs owner and chief designer, Julie Odum, is a published and award winning floral designer. Julie comes from an extensive art background which lays the groundwork for all of her designs. Receiving professional training in floral design through college courses and collaborating with many award-winning designers has awarded her the ability to pursue a business specializing in weddings and

formal events. Julie takes great pride and pleasure in combining her love of design and flowers to create artful and unique floral pieces that excite the senses and celebrate the people they represent.

Jon’s Pipe Shop

Patrick Callaghan 509 E. Green St., Ste. 1 Champaign, IL 61820 217.344.3459 pipeshop@pipeline.com http://www.pipeline.com/~pipeshop/ Cigar, Cigarette Tobacco Dealers – Retail

Just Fore Fun Golf Center

Tom Herbert 301 Eisner Dr. Champaign, IL 61820 217.403.4653 manager@justforefun.com www.justforefun.com Golf Equipment & Supplies – Retail Just Fore Fun Golf Center boasts nearly 20 acres of a driving range: elevated bluegrass tees and targets, bentgrass putting green, sand bunker and a new covered tee line and patio area. Golf instruction is also available. Recently, Just Fore Fun Golf Center expanded with the addition of the Pro Shop and Golf Simulators. The

Pro Shop offers a full line of golf equipment and accessories from many of the top brand equipment manufacturers. To complete the golf amenities, they have 3 Golf Simulators that offer the ability to drive, chip and putt on 69 different courses from around the world at any time of the year. Winter golf leagues are also available.

Kraft Development Group

Eric Kraft 1512 River Bluff Dr. Mahomet, IL 61853 217.202.3869 ekraft@kraftdevelopmentgroup.com www.kraftdevelopmentgroup.com Business Consultants Kraft Development Group, Inc. develops world-class businesses by developing people and their processes. Kraft Development

Group has experience in agriculture, manufacturing, dealerships, service sectors, supply chain management, information technology, security and construction. As a strategist and change agent, Eric Kraft works to assess your current situation, identifies areas of improvement, charts a plan of improvement and comes along side to execute the plan. If additional resources or specialties are needed, there’s an alliance of partners that specialize in everything from human resources, information technology, accounting, etc. In addition they can assist with sales and marketing plans, the creation of sales pipelines, metrics and dashboards, energy efficiency, customer satisfaction and ultimately profitability.

Land of Lincoln Goodwill Industries Sharon Durbin

Personal Attention. Fast Answers.

114 N. Vine St., Ste. 114A Urbana, IL 61801 217.789.0400 info@llgi.org www.llgi.org

Lando Salon

Jessica Laley 707 S. 6th St., Ste. 1 Champaign, IL 61820 217.344.0097 j_laley04@yahoo.com www.lando-salon.com Beauty Salons Lando has been in business in Champaign Illinois for over 45 years. Lando originally started business as a barber shop in 1965. The salon now offers services to men and women of all ages. Lando still has some of its original barbers, but along the way has added some talented stylists. Lando is located in the heart of the University of Illinois campus; in turn all of Lando’s stylists stay very up-to-date with today’s modern trends.

Modern Nails

Michael Nguyen 1711 W. Kirby Ave. Champaign, IL 61821 217.954.0500 michaelkn@live.com www.champaignmodernnailssalon. com Nail Salons

At BankChampaign, we still believe banking is a people-to-people business. Contact Kay Machula at our downtown Champaign location to discuss your business banking needs. machula@bankchampaign.com N.A.

Main Bank 2101 South Neil • 217.351.2870 MarketPlace Facility 5 Convenience Center • 217.351.2876 M2 Facility Downtown 301 North Neil • 217.351.2877 www.bankchampaign.com

Modern Nails Salon strives to be a personal refuge for physical and spiritual renewal. They feel in a world filled with stressful deadlines and ever increasing demands it’s more important now than ever to make time to pamper the body and soul.

Monical’s Pizza

Jay Wheeler 103 W. Kirby Ave. Champaign, IL 61820 217.356.4243 www.monicals.com

Commerce Connection/

The Chamber Annual Meeting is fast approaching! #bethere

Sponsored by BPC, Inc., the 2012 Chamber Annual Meeting will be held Friday, October 26 from noon to 2 p.m. at the Hilton Garden Inn in Champaign. The 2012 Small Business of the Year Award will be presented at the event. Additionally, Rex Havens, a nationally acclaimed comedian and author, will speak and entertain guests. Seats may be reserved individually for $39 or per table sponsorship (seats 8) for $400. To reserve your seat, contact Norma Wesley via email, NormaW@ champaigncounty.org, or by phone, 217.531.4669.

Montague Brands

communications, constituent and volunteer relations, and fundraising. Montague Brands works with nonprofits to help them raise more money and diversify their funding sources which can include fees for service as well as charitable donations from individuals, corporations and foundations.

Montague Brands offers consulting services for nonprofits (charities, municipalities, schools, clubs, associations, etc.) throughout Central Illinois to help them grow and diversify their funding and revenue sources. Fundraising (AKA Development) has three components:

New Creations

Tim Montague 108 W. Vermont Ave. Urbana, IL 61801 217.722.0429 tim@montaguebrands.com www.montaguebrands.com Marketing Consultants Marketing Programs & Services

Eric Luedtke P.O. Box 1193 Mahomet, IL 61853 217.351.3065 newcreationsremodeling@yahoo.com www.newcreationsremodeling.com

In January of 1984, Eric Luedtke founded New Creations Contracting, Inc. NCC is a full-line Remodeling General Contracting Company, providing Custom Remodeling and New Construction Services to Champaign, Urbana, Mahomet, Monticello and greater Champaign County. The company is committed to providing the highest value to their clients for their investment, positive employment environment for their employees, and to reinvest the profits of their labor for the needs of families in east central Illinois and the world.

Pampered Pet Grooming & Dog Training Inc.


They are consulting and training specialists, facilitating professional growth for closely held, family owned and medium to large firms ready to go to the next level in their professional trek.

Robin’s Nest

Robin Nelson 515 W. Town Center Blvd., Ste. 511 Champaign, IL 61822 217.607.1074 Robin.nelson42@yahoo.com Clothes – Consignment & Retail Robin’s Nest is an upscale women’s resale and consignment boutique. They offer a wide variety of clothing in all sizes.

Rural King

Rhonda Grisamore 913 W. Marketview Dr. Champaign, IL 61822 217.403.1011 champaign@ruralking.com www.ruralking.com Department Stores Nada Cagle 2 Henson Pl., Ste. 2 & 3 Champaign, IL 61820 217.352.0595 cupamperedpet@gmail.com www.cupamperedpet.com Pet & Animal Sitting, Exercising & Day Care Services The Pampered Pet Boarding, Daycare, Grooming and Dog Training, Inc. staff are qualified and experienced in grooming both cats and dogs. They recently added a full service doggie daycare. All of the staff love animals and are involved in the day-to-day operations to ensure pets have the best of services. They specialize in small dogs and first time haircuts for puppies. They also take care of cats and large dogs too. Together they have over 30 years of grooming and animal care experience. The owners and employees promise to provide a safe and top of

the line “spa-like” experience for every client.

PRISMA International Consulting

Eric Luedtke P.O. Box 1193 Mahomet, IL 61853 217.586.5242 Prisma.coaching@yahoo.com Formerly New Creations Consulting based in Champaign Illinois, the company transformed into Prisma when they took their services internationally - into Europe in 2010. Senior Consultant, Founder and President Eric S. Luedtke, is an internationally requested executive management consultant and coach and keynote motivational speaker. The company consists of a team of highly respected colleagues from here in Central Illinois, Europe and Asia.

Rural King Supply is America’s farm and home store that still focuses on the farmer and his needs. They carry a varied product mix with items such as livestock feed, farm equipment, agricultural parts, lawn mowers, work wear, fashion clothing, housewares and toys. New to the store line up is Ashley Furniture. The store is dedicated to serving customers’ needs.

Savoy 16

Melissa Garske 232 Burwash Ave. Savoy, IL 61874 217.355.9718 savoy@gqti.com www.gqti.com Theatres - Movies Starting in 1930 with just a single screen in downtown Grand Rapids, Goodrich Quality Theaters has innovated, changed and grown with the industry to include theaters in

Commerce Connection/ 15

cities throughout Michigan, Indiana, Illinois, and Missouri. They are committed to good customer service, projection and sound in every theater and auditorium. The theaters feature comfortable, high-back Tempurpedic seats. All theaters feature digital surround sound to give that one-of-akind experience.

Sensenbrenner Family Dental Dr. William Sensenbrenner 3101 Village Office Pl. Champaign, IL 61821 217.352.4646 drwillsensenbrenner@gmail.com www.champaigndentaloffice.com

Champaign dentist, Kenneth Sensenbrenner, DMD has been offering quality restorative, family, and cosmetic dentistry using the finest state-of-the-art dental technology to the Champaign, IL area since 1978. The center welcomes patients of all ages to visit Sensenbrenner Family Dental and receive comprehensive

care. They seek to meet all dental needs, including providing same day emergency treatment. They offer an extensive list of state-of-the-art general, restorative, and cosmetic dental services to meet the needs of the whole family. Their goal is to assist each patient in achieving and maintaining long term dental health and a beautiful smile.

Smith Design & Consign

Heather Smith 41 E. University Ave., Ste. 1E Champaign, IL 61820 217.355.7610 smithdesignandconsign@hotmail.com www.smithdesignandconsign.com Consignment Services Smith Design & Consign offers new and used furniture and decor. They aim to be a place where clients imagine decorating possibilities. Whether someone is buying a new house or just revamping a single room, they strive to offer unique styles for a variety of


Starcrest Cleaners Tony Everett 611 S. Neil St. Champaign, IL 61820 217.352.4801

1125 Windsor Rd. Champaign, IL 61821 217.355.3415 tevrtt@msn.com www.starcrestcleaners.net Cleaners Starcrest Cleaners is a family owned and operated cleaning business. Everyday they strive to earn their customers’ business by providing professional, quality dry cleaning with the best service and amenities available. Starcrest has three locations to serve the Champaign area. They are proud to be part of the Champaign/ Urbana community and look forward to growing with the community in the years to come.

Enjoy wherever the road of life takes you. We’ll be there along the way. From buying a first home to enjoying your dream home. From sending the kids to college to planning for their wedding and beyond. Our banking and wealth management experts promise to help you every step of the way. Go ahead—enjoy the ride.

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busey.com 217.365.4500

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This section sponsored by:



ith every election, the Champaign County Business Empowered PAC stands behind candidates that will best support local business. A subsidiary corporation of the Champaign County Chamber of Commerce, the political action committee (PAC) operates from a fund which companies may make voluntary contributions to candidates for public office. A PAC allows a company to support candidates who share its legislative positions. It helps elect and retains officials who understand the business environment and who are more likely to have an interest in the Chamber’s legislative agenda and business agenda. A PAC is one of the most straightforward and transparent ways for a company to be involved in the political process. All contributions to the PAC are disclosed on the PAC’s reports. In addition, both the candidates who

receive contributions and the PAC itself disclose the contributions the PAC makes. In order for a candidate to be endorsed by the Business Empowered PAC, the candidate must respond to a questionnaire and go through an interview process with the PAC Board. PAC Board members make a decision on endorsements based on the questionnaire and interview, as well as several other key factors including an incumbent’s past voting record on business issues. Other factors range from knowledge and qualifications for the office being sought to the candidates desire to serve the community. Champaign County’s Business Empowered PAC made the following endorsements for the November 2012 election:

- Section sponsored by the Champaign County Business Empowered Political Action Committee -



CHAD HAYS FOR ILLINOIS REPRESENTATIVE - 104TH DISTRICT What are your top three accomplishments during your tenure in this office? “I am very proud of my sustained commitment to the business community. The Illinois Chamber of Commerce named me one of only seven House members a ‘Champion of Enterprise’ for my 100% voting record with the Chamber. I stood up and demanded that the state’s health plan be rebid when the original award included no Central Illinois hospitals, nursing homes or physicians. I also played a productive role in crafting $2 billion in Medicaid savings in 2012 alone.” What are your top three priorities for improving the business climate in Champaign County? “Real workman’s compensation reform, extension of enterprise zone and TIFF district legislation and stabilizing the Illinois budget and debt structure.” What do you believe are the biggest impediments to businesses surviving in Illinois and how would you address them and when? “The workman’s compensation situation in Illinois is the worst in the US. Primary causation must be on the table and from my perspective this issue must be addressed immediately when the spring session begins. Also, the unknowns in terms of the fiscal stability of the state and the enormity of the 2011 tax increase


are barriers. This does not lend itself to confidence in terms of investment. In the macro sense, regulatory and tax relief, signaling to businesses that it is safe to be in Illinois, to invest in our State and that we are open for business would be a tremendous start.”


What makes you qualified to serve in your position? “I have studied and worked in financial fields that are allied with-and complementary to- accountancy. At the U of I, I obtained my Bachelor’s degree in economics with a minor in finance and Master’s degree in Actuarial Science, a quantitatively rigorous analysis of risk in the finance and insurance industries. I have performed cash-flow testing, auditing, forecasting and financial reporting for health and life insurers.” What are your top three priorities for improving the business climate in Champaign County? “Instilling confidence among business owners by making sure that its expenditures are reported in an accurate and timely manner. In addition, as a budget expert, I would advise the County Board so that it can make as cost-effective as possible their decisions regarding large capital expenditures or sales and the financing.” What role do you see your office having with respect to the operation of Champaign County? “The role is to audit all claims against the county,

- Section sponsored by the Champaign County Business Empowered Political Action Committee -



collect and analyze information on the county’s expenditures, approve orders for supplies, maintain the file of all contracts and issue quarterly reports, among other duties.”

GORDY HULTEN FOR CHAMPAIGN COUNTY CLERK What are your top three accomplishments during your tenure in this office? Establishing seven new Early Voting locations across Champaign County. Implementing poll books (laptops) with software programmed in-house for more efficient, accurate and cost-effective processing of voters at Election Day. Also, printing of all ballots in-house ensures better quality, improved security and tens of thousands of dollars in cost savings annually.” What are your top three priorities for improving the business climate in Champaign County? “We will provide services efficiently and whenever possible online so that businesspeople can get the information they need from us as quickly as possible. We will identify operational improvements. I will continue to advocate our local, state and federal officials for public policies that support entrepreneurship and private sector employees.” What role do you see your office having with respect to the operation of Champaign County? “My record and goal is to be a model of integrity, in-


novation and independence. Additionally, we identify best practices in a number of areas and can provide information and implementation assistance to other county departments as we pursue improved performance.”

KATIE BLAKEMAN FOR CHAMPAIGN COUNTY CIRCUIT CLERK What makes you qualified to serve in your position? My background includes two degrees directly related to the office: a B.A. in Business Administration and an M.S. in Library add Information Science. My professional career began in the private sector, working for the Fortune 500 company, NewellRubbermaid. It was there that I gained experience in budgeting and personnel management, as well as a talent for providing outstanding customer service. In 2006, I joined the University of Illinois, where as a professional fundraiser, I was responsible for the stewardship of more than 100 different gift funds. I also improved my technological skills and assisted in the development of data management systems. What are your top three priorities for improving the business climate in Champaign County? “I am focusing my campaign on three primary areas of improvement: customer service, technology and accessibility. I believe that by making the office a regional and state leader in these areas will help attract and retain new business in Champaign County.”

- Section sponsored by the Champaign County Business Empowered Political Action Committee -

Don’t forget to


Election Day is Tuesday, November 6


What role do you see your office having with respect to the operation of Champaign County? “As one of the largest county departments, the success of the office is critical to the operation of Champaign County. It employs more than 30 full-time staff members and receipts more than $10 million annually. Serving as a diligent steward of taxpayer dollars assists in reducing the tax burden on local businesses and individual taxpayers.”

BARBARA FRASCA FOR CHAMPAIGN COUNTY RECORDER OF DEEDS What are your top three accomplishments during your tenure in this office? “When I first took office, it took as much as six weeks to get a document recorded and returned. Now someone can bring in a document, get it recorded and leave with the original. Champaign County was also one of the first counties to provide internet access. Now our records are available 24/7 online. We have also inducted electronic recording. Companies are able to submit documents electronically. They are received electronically, with the push of a button they are recorded, imaged, partially indexed and the document is sent back to the submitter.” What are your top three priorities for improving the business climate in Champaign County? “We need to work to stop unfunded mandates to local


governments. Unfunded mandates sent down from the state are generally passed on to the taxpayer, with businesses likely paying more than their fair share. We need to work actively to retail and grow existing businesses and recruit new businesses. We need incentives for businesses.” What role do you see your office having with respect to the operation of Champaign County? “The argument could be made that the Recorder’s office plays one of the most important roles. Property and the ability to capitalize it is the cornerstone of our economy and civilization.”

GARY MAXWELL FOR CHAMPAIGN COUNTY BOARD – DISTRICT 1 What are your top three accomplishments during your tenure in this office? “I worked with the County highway department to assume the maintenance responsibilities for a formal state maintained road in the village of Foosland. I helped shape a compromise that provided funds for repairs to the downtown jail. I have studied budget issues, the nursing home and jail needs and done my homework.” What are your top three priorities for improving the business climate in Champaign County? “Providing an efficient, responsive and predictable county government is one of the best ways the Board

- Section sponsored by the Champaign County Business Empowered Political Action Committee -

can assist businesses. Permitting, zoning and land use issues are other areas in which county government can improve the business climate. For example, the Board recently adopted two zoning map amendments to accommodate new businesses.” What are the top 2 infrastructure projects or issues the County needs to address? What is your plan to pay for these projects? “The top two are the maintenance of existing structures and jail space needs. Champaign County has a good set of buildings. They need to be maintained and the County must find the means to do so. I have proposed reserving 20% of the annual growth in revenues for this purpose. The jail space needs study will result in recommendations for modifications to our existing jails or new construction. We have limited ability to fund these improvements and I propose to keep the citizens informed and be prepared to go to them with a possible referendum request to provide the additional resources if needed.”

JEFF KIBLER FOR CHAMPAIGN COUNTY BOARD – DISTRICT 5 What are your top three accomplishments during your tenure in this office? “I started serving on the Champaign County Board within the last seven months. I focused on two pressing issues: the budget and nursing homes. Within the recent budgetary sessions, I worked with our administrator on addressing several concerns regarding department budgets. Going forward, I anticipate to push for more emphasis on budgeting and KPIs for our department. As my family has been involved within geriatric care for many years, I understand the concerns and issues facing nursing homes.” What are your top three priorities for improving the business climate in Champaign County? “Ultimately, the County needs to use the resources provided by local businesses in the most efficient manner. When possible, local governments should try to identify ways to reduce the tax burden on its taxpayers. Fiscal responsibility is a top priority. When government can be responsible, the overall community and business climate improves.”

What are the top 2 infrastructure projects or issues the County needs to address? What is your plan to pay for these projects? “As Southwest Champaign continues to grow, businesses will begin to congregate southwest of I-57 and Windsor Rd. We will need to work with the state to widen the road and overpass to allow for continued growth. Also, I believe we need to bring our fiscal house in order. We do not have a firm grasp on our debt service. We must work together to solve these very tough financial difficulties.”


What are your top three accomplishments during your tenure in this office? “In March 2012 I was appointed to fill a vacant seat on the board. This is my first election. But during my brief time, one main focus has been on the Champaign County Nursing Home. Another focus has been regarding using eminent domain to complete a section of Olympian Drive. Currently, we are focused on the budget.” What are your top three priorities for improving the business climate in Champaign County? “Economic development for the county. It is my intention to help lead the County Board with the assistance of the Chamber, University and local Economic Development into becoming more accountable to economic development. We also need to change the balance of the board to improve the business climate.” What are the top 2 infrastructure projects or issues the County needs to address? What is your plan to pay for these projects? “The past few boards have been on building sprees. In order to receive the best return on tax dollars, the county needs to roll all their property into a systematic maintenance program. Reduce bond liability is the best method for growth in the county. In today’s economic climate looking for ways to provide services more efficiently is the best approach.”

Is your inbox overflowing? The Chamber and Parkland are joining together for a FREE seminar to help!

MONDAY, NOVEMBER 12 6 to 8 p.m. Parkland College Business Training Center Between Black Friday and Cyber Monday is another day, one dedicated to the businesses that boost the economy and invigorate neighborhoods across the country. It’s Small Business Saturday, and this year it’s happening on November 24. To help raise awareness of businesses participating, the Chamber will be hosting a “Coffee Stop before you Shop” the morning of Small Business Saturday. In addition to free coffee, the Chamber will be handing out maps, coupons and discount information for area small businesses. This event will be promoted heavily through local media.

The class is split into two modules, called “Get Control of Email” and “Get Control of Information”. Module I: Get Control of Email Learn how to: cut email processing time; eliminate unncessary email; declutter your inbox; boost email quality; improve email etiquette and reduce legal liability when sending email. Module II: Get Control of Information Discover why storage systems fail; learn about “five file’; learn how to organize your information and make better decisions with the right information. The class is free but participants need to register in advance by contacting Norma Wesley at NormaW@ champaigncounty.org or 217.531.4669.

To place your FREE business lising on our map and receive promotion at the Chamber’s “Coffee Shop before you Shop”, contact Nikolle Keeney at NikolleK@ champaigncounty.org.



Starting a Small Business is an overview of the advantages, hazards and requirements of starting a small business. Content includes defining your business, company and competitive analysis, marketing, cash flow and tips for small business start-up.

Thursday, October 18, 3 to 5:30 p.m.; Saturday, November 3, 9 to 11:30 a.m. Writing a Business Plan is a review of the importance of writing a business plan. Content includes business plan format, financial analysis and securing financing. Thursday, October 25, 3 to 5:30 p.m., Thursday, November 15, 6 to 8:30 p.m. Workshops are $25 per one session or $60 for all three. All workshops are held at the Champaign County Chamber of Commerce, 303 W. Kirby Ave, in Champaign.

217.359.1791 eci-score.org

an added benefit...

...meeting new people, making new contacts, learning new things. Though the Chamber is an organization of 1,300+ businesses, it’s the PEOPLE that make up those businesses. Every month we host two regular networking events, First Friday Coffee and Business After Hours. We love to see new faces and new people out networking. If you haven’t stopped by for awhile, come to one of our networking events and say hello - we’re certain you’ll see lots of friendly faces!

First Friday Coffee

Business After Hours

Location varies

Location varies

Held the first Friday of every month 7:30 - to - 9 a.m.

Held the third Thursday of every month 5 - to - 7 p.m.

Of course, the Chamber offers MANY other networking opportunities - breakfasts and outings and meetings, etc - we’d love to see you at any! For more information, check out our website, champaigncounty.org.

Mailing Labels

Chamber Store

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. Two lists are available for purchase: Long list (approx. 2,500 names and businesses).............. $175 Short list (approx. 1,400 names and businesses)...............$125 Contact Norma Wesley to place your order, NormaW@ champaigncounty.org or 217.3531.4669.


Our electronic newsletter gets sent out to more than 4,000 businesses and businesspeople in Champaign County each week. Sponsor an e-Connection and get your business seen by THOUSANDS. Header sponsorship (rotates every four weeks)................$250 Sidebar sponsorship (rototates every four week ..............$150 Contact Nikolle Keeney for more information, NikolleK@ champaigncounty.org or 217.359.1791.

Website Sponsorship

The Chamber is planning a massive redesign of our website within the next year. There will be numerous opportunities for businesses to sponsor pages, host banners and showcase themselves on the Chamber site. More information will be available in the coming months. If you would like to express early interest, contact Nikolle Keeney at NikolleK@ champaigncounty.org.

Online Business Directory Enhancements

Enhance your listing on the Chamber’s online business directory. The directory gets hundreds of THOUSANDS of hits each day-- turn your standard (free) listing into an eye-catching, search engine optimized advertisement. Basic upgrade........................................................................$40 Value upgrade........................................................................$60 Deluxe upgrade.....................................................................$90 Contact Nikolle for more information, NikolleK@ champaigncounty.org or 217.359.1791.

Event Sponsorship

Email footer sponsorship

For only $75, your business can place a banner on every email that gets sent out of the Chamber offce... including our e-Connection and all email blasts! That’s an average of over 16,000 emails per week. You can’t get better (or cheaper) exposure! Email footer (one week)........................................................$75 Contact Nikolle Keeney for more information, NikolleK@ champaigncounty.org or 217.359.1791.

Commerce Connection Advertisement

The Commerce Connection is a bi-monthly publication that gets sent out to more than 3,000 businesses and businesspeople in Champaign County. Content always relevant to local business, the publication is full-color, full-gloss and all around awesome. Ads start at only $90 Contact Nikolle Keeney for more information - NikolleK@ champaigncounty.org or 217.359.1791.

From First Friday Coffee to our annual Golf Outing, the Chamber hosts a number of events each month! By sponsoring a Chamber event-- your business gets great exposure not only at the event itself but also within all our promotional materials (emails, mailings, e-newsletters, Commerce Connection, website, etc...) We have numerous opportunities throughout the year, here’s what’s coming up: Athena Award Luncheon Title sponsor...................................................................$2000 Lapel pin sponor...............................................................$850 Young Professional sponsor.............................................$250 Breakfast Series sponsorship (includes table of 8)........$1000 Business Expo : Title sponsorship, power lunch sponsorship, wine tasting sponsorship (prices available upon request) Additional sponsorship information for events such as the Annual Meeting, Golf Outing and Come Wine With Us is available upon request. Contact Karly at KarlyC@ champaigncounty.org or 217.359.1791 with any event sponsorship inquiries.

Some things you get free:











INFO - - A N D - -


For more information on any of these services, contact the Chamber at 217.359.1791. Services are available free to all Chamber members.

Commerce Connection/ 25

MEMBERSHIP NEWS CHRISTIE CLINIC produced and entered a video in the Pink Glove Dance Video contest to help raise awareness for breast cancer prevention. What started out as a small group wanting to come together as a team erupted into much more... an excited community of 242 Christie Clinic team members from 27 different departments across several locations. Voting for the Pink Glove Dance will take place from October 12 to 26. The first place winner of the contest will receive $10,000 to donate to a charity that supports breast cancer research. Christie Clinic has chose Susan G. Komen For the Cure. To vote, visit www.pinkglovedance.com. CU WOODSHOP SUPPLY, INC. is now offering woodworking classes at their new facility, down the street from their store. The business will host a Fall Woodworking Festival November 1-3, featuring classes by George Vondrisca (managing editor for the Woodworkers Guild of America), facility tours, demonstrations, door prizes and more. Check out cuwoodshop.com for more information. Local MCDONALD’S franchisee Dwight Miller was hailed as a high-energy, goal-oriented businessman in being named Parkland College Foundation’s Entrepreneur of the Year. About 250 people turned out on October 3, 2012 to honor Miller — whose company operates 10 area McDonald’s restaurants. OBITER RESEARCH L.L.C. has been accepted into the SHARP Program. Safety and Health Achievement Recognition Program (SHARP) recognizes small business employers who operate an exemplary injury and illness prevention program. Acceptance into the SHARP Program from OSHA, is an achievement of status that singles you out among your business peers as a model for worksite safety and health. Obiter Research is the 27th company in Illinois to be accepted into the SHARP Program and the only Chemical Research Facility. THE PAVILION has been named one of the nation’s “Top Performers on Key Quality Measures” by the Joint Commission, an accrediting organization for health care facilities. The Pavilion was one of 620 hospitals in the US that earned that distinction. Specfically, The Pavilion was recognized for exemplaray performance in using processes shown to improve care for certain conditions, including heart attack, heart failure, pneumonia, surgical care, children’s asthma, stroke and venous thrombo

embolism as well as inpatient psychiatric services. Sara Marshky, CIC, of SNYDER INSURANCE was recently recognized for professional leadership and advanced knowledge by the Society of Certified Insurance Counselors (CIC), a leading national insuraance professinal organization. Marshky was awarded a certificate marking more than fifteen years of participation as a designated CIC, which requires annual completion of advanced education and training.


Are you renovating your space or revamping your services? Have you won any recent awards or made any additions to your staff? Do you have news to share with the Champaign County business community? Tell us about it and get featured in the Chamber’s next Commerce Connection! Send an email with your news to Nikolle Keeney, NikolleK@ champaigncounty.org.

What issues are most important to your business in this year’s federal election?

...continued from page 3

(...in response to the question, “What issues are most important to your business in this year’s federal election?”): “Resolving the Illinois pension and budget crisis and how it affects the University of Illinois.” “Nothing matters locally compared to nationally.” “Controlled spending at all levels of government.” “Electing leaders who will invest in the future of ChampaignUrbana.” “Property and income taxes.” “Fiscal budget discipline in Springfield – using tax dollars efficiently and stop wasting money.” “Sales tax issues, real estate values, local business regulations.”

“Job creation, tax breaks and healthcare.” “Reducing the national debt and creating an economic environment which does not deter job creation.” “The miserable state of the economy and over regulation.” “Effort to repeal healthcare law, overall proposed tax structure for small business and regaining America’s position of leadership in world affairs.” “Re-electing President Obama.” “The economy in general, job growth and increase in production and tax incentives for charitable giving.” “Education funding and student loans, pension funding relief, lack of compromise in Congress.” “Women’s rights and the economy.” “A productive congress that cooperates, a reasonable budget, preserving important programs that build communities and more equitable taxes.” “Simplifying the tax structure.” “Lowering regulations, taxes, licensing fees and insurance requirements for small businesses.” DISCLAIMER: The statistics and opinions featured in “Viewpoints” do not represent the position of the Chamber. Responses were generated through a survey sent to all Chamber members.



August 2012 Flash Economic Index for the State of Illinois

of events

STARTING A SMALL BUSINESS - ECI SCORE WORKSHOP Cost is $25 per workshop; Call 217.359.1791 to register Thursday, October 18, 3 to 5:30 p.m. Held at the Champaign County Chamber of Commerce 303 W. Kirby Ave., Champaign BUSINESS AFTER HOURS Thursday, October 18, 5 to 7 p.m. Hosted by MSA Professional Services, Inc. 201 W. Springfield Ave., Suite 400, Champaign WRITING A BUSINESS PLAN - ECI SCORE WORKSHOP Cost is $25 per workshop; Call 217.359.1791 to register Thursday, October 25, 3 to 5 p.m. Held at the Champaign County Chamber of Commerce 303 W. Kirby Ave., Champaign CHAMBER ANNUAL MEETING Friday, October 26, Noon to 2 p.m. Held at the Hilton Garden Inn 1501 S. Neil St., Champaign FIRST FRIDAY COFFEE Friday, November 2, 7:30 to 9 a.m. Hosted by BankChampaign, N.A. - South Neil Street location 2101 S. Neil St., Champaign BUSINESS SUCCESS SERIES - CUSTOMER SERVICE See page 6 for details Tuesday, November 6, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Held at the Champaign County Chamber of Commerce 303 W. Kirby Ave., Champaign EARN: EXCHANGE AND REFERRAL NETWORK Thursday, November 8, starting at 7:30 a.m. (Registration opens Thursday, Nov. 1 at 3 p.m.) Held at the Champaign County Chamber of Commerce 303 W. Kirby Ave., Champaign “GET CONTROL OF YOUR INBOX” - SEMINAR Hosted by the Chamber and the Parkland College Monday, November 12, 6 to 8 p.m. Held at the Parkland College Business Training Center 2400 W. Bradley Ave., Champaign BUSINESS AFTER HOURS Thursday, November 15, 5 to 7 p.m. Hosted by the Parkland College Foundation Location TBA FIRST FRIDAY COFFEE Friday, December 7, 7:30 to 9 a.m. Hosted by First Financial Bank - Urbana location 2510 S. Philo Rd., Urbana

See a full list of events at champaigncounty.org.

39 Champaign County business licenses applied for in September 2012. Unemployment rate for Champaign County in August 2012



60% Percentage of new residents to Champaign County with a household income of over $60,000.


Individuals departing from Willard Airport in May 2012

Individuals flying into Willard Airport in May 2012



Rides were taken on CUMTD during September 2012

7 3,128

Number of visitors to the Chamber’s homepage in September 2012





www.ar-mech.com 217-819-5188


Profile for Champaign County Chamber of Commerce

Commerce Connection - Oct./ Nov. 2012  

Champaign County's premier business-to-business publication for more than 20 years.

Commerce Connection - Oct./ Nov. 2012  

Champaign County's premier business-to-business publication for more than 20 years.