Now in its third year, West Chicago’s Brilliance in Business recognition program once again shines a deserving light on six outstanding businesses helping to shape the community. The program is one more way in which the City hopes to build greater awareness and appreciation for the strides being made daily to industry best practices, innovation, creativity, and sustainability.
From a global leader in the energy economy, a manufacturer which prioritized a spirit of generosity, and an internationally recognized arborist to a family dentistry which has become a downtown mainstay, an innovative merger of two successful organizations which aims to advance economic prosperity in the larger business community, and a small but mighty not-for-profit whose core mission is one of nurturing the values of good citizenship and character-building in America’s youth, this year’s six winners set the bar high and surpassed it.
Green Initiatives Award: Siemens Industry, Inc., located at 1500 Harvester Road is a global company whose roots run deep in America, including here in West Chicago, Illinois. The company has been a leader in sustainability and green initiatives for decades and the West Chicago manufacturing plants are a perfect example of the changing landscape of manufacturing in America. Siemens recently invested approximately $10 million upgrading two buildings located on Harvester Road, one of which will support the growing demand for solar power in the United States – converting blue-collar jobs to green collar jobs. Its SINVERT solar inverters produced at this location are being shipped to solar projects across the country, allowing the power of the sun to be harnessed.
Community Service Award: Sleep Innovations, Inc., located at 1750 Downs Drive is being honored for its compassionate response to a devastating fire that swept through the 513/515 Carriage Drive apartment building in the Aspen Apartment complex in West Chicago on Monday, July 11, 2011. Fortunately, residents escaped the fire unharmed, however many suffered the trauma of seeing their possessions destroyed and finding themselves homeless. Upon learning of the tragedy, Sleep Innovations, Inc. stopped the production of customer orders and began producing 100 queen-size memory foam mattresses and pillows for donation to the victims of this fire. On July 14, 2011, a 53-foot semi-trailer was parked at the West Chicago Police Department for distribution to these families in need.
Community Image Award: Kramer Tree Specialists (KTS) has grown in stature since 1974 as a family-owned business committed to its philosophy of empowering the consumer in the role of caretaker of their trees for the benefit of future generations to the internationally recognized leader in the arboricultural industry that it is today. Owner Joe Kramer and family have built a state-of-the-art facility at 300 Charles Court that has advanced the image of the West Chicago business community and captured the attention of the International Society of Arboriculture (ISA). The ISA selected KTS from all the greater Chicago area tree care companies as the host company for its 2010 international conference tour. Closer to home, KTS contributed to the community’s annual Frosty Fest holiday event last year by donating its services to remove a 35’ live spruce tree that had become too large for the front yard of a West Chicago resident, transporting it and fully decorating it for the enjoyment of the entire community.
Small Business of the Year Award: Main Street Family Dentistry, office of Dr. Richard Smith, is located in the historic downtown district of West Chicago at 119 Main Street. The dental practice was originally opened by Dr. Wesley Watanabe and has served the community for several decades. The practice is an example of the staying power of a small business which has succeeded by providing quality care in a relaxed, friendly manner and by remaining committed to advancements in all phases of general dentistry including teeth whitening, veneers and implants. The office continues to be very involved in charitable and community events such as Blooming Fest, Frosty Fest, the downtown Trick or Treat, the West Chicago Public Library Children’s Summer Reading Program and the West Chicago Senior Fair, as well as community sporting events. Main Street Family Dentistry contributes time to the children in the community’s schools, teaching good dental health and providing them with dental products. Dr. Smith currently serves as President of the West Chicago Rotary Club. He has participated in charitable dentistry locally and abroad, and periodically provides care to military service personnel.
Economic Development Award: A strategic partnership between the West Chicago Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the Warrenville Chamber of Commerce earlier this year has resulted in the formation of the Western DuPage Chamber of Commerce, and now provides members with more contacts, a greater depth of service, additional programs and access to a dedicated staff with over 25 years of combined experience in the business of helping business. Through networking events, training grants, legislative advocacy, and more, the Western DuPage Chamber of Commerce is a strong business ally in today’s challenging business environment. It is an organization dedicated to helping their members succeed, which translates to healthy economic development for the communities it serves. Headquartered in downtown West Chicago at 306 Main Street in the Wayne and Helen Fox Community Center, the Chamber has recently overseen the renovation of an underutilized space at the Center and furnished it to create a boardroom-style setting which will be used to host member training sessions and committee meetings, among other things.
Outstanding Not-for-Profit Award: Since 1909 when W.D. Boyce brought scouting to America, the guiding principles of the Boy Scouts of America has remained the same; preparing young people to make ethical and moral choices over their lifetimes by instilling in them the values of the Scout Oath and Scout Law. Deicke Scout Shop, which is operated by the Boy Scouts of America Three Fires Council, supports the mission of scouting through its large inventory of uniforms, camping equipment, achievement recognitions and more. Plus, the shop serves as a resource center for information and registration of upcoming group outings and activities of the Three Fires Council. In 2010, 357 Eagle Scouts, 16,304 Cub Scouts, 6,574 Boy Scouts, 708 Venturers, and 1,547 Explorers were registered members; plus the Council is proud to serve one of the largest special needs packs in the country. Deicke Scout Shop, which is located at 155 West Roosevelt Road has become a regional destination, bringing scouting families from all over the western suburbs to West Chicago.
Special recognition will be held for the six winning businesses at the City Council meeting on Monday, December 5, 2011 at 7:00 p.m. at 475 Main Street and will feature a commemorative video highlighting their accomplishments which will be made available on the City’s website, www.westchicago.org after December 5th.
“By celebrating the success stories of these six brilliant businesses, we are trumping the perception that this economy has our businesses stalled in a survival-only mode and are acknowledging the reality that they are moving forward, and that we are moving forward. Our businesses have continued to contribute, create, innovate and invest in their future and ours,” said West Chicago Mayor Mike Kwasman.