Friday, February 22, 2019

Leadership Class Visits Springfield

The student's in the 2019 R. David Tebben Community Leadership Academy visited the Illinois State Capitol on February 21st.  They heard legislative updates from Senators Bill Brady and Dave Koehler, and Representatives Mike Unes, Tim Butler, and Keith Sommer.  They also spent additional time with Representative Unes on the House floor, and with Senator Koehler in the leadership offices.  Before arriving at the Capitol, the class visited the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum.   You can see more pictures from this event at:

Thursday, February 21, 2019

23rd Annual John M. Evans Scholarship Golf Tournament

Mark your calendar for this special event! Our outing will be held, Wednesday, June 19, 2019. Look for more information coming out March 15th.

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Seventh Annual “ICC Presents: Jim Maloof’s Legacy of Love for the Arts in Central Illinois” Returns to the East Peoria Campus April 15

Along with the Peoria Ballet, ICC Vocal Jazz and Hard Bop Band, the Penguin Project, Youth Music Illinois, and Peoria Players, the family of former Peoria Mayor Jim Maloof and others will join forces and talents to raise money in a one-of-a-kind showcase of entertainment for the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. The 7th Annual “ICC Presents:  Jim Maloof’s Legacy of Love for the Arts in Central Illinois,” takes place on Mon., April 15 at 6:30 pm, in the Performing Arts Center on the ICC East Peoria Campus. The doors will open at 6 pm.

This one-night only event is a family-friendly entertainment extravaganza designed to promote the performing arts in Central Illinois and highlight former Mayor Maloof’s local and national legacy with St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. The entire event is planned and executed by ICC students each year and is the kick-off event to ICC Arts Week.

Tickets for the event are $8 each. Tickets are required and limited to the first 500 people. Tickets can be purchased online at or via the ICC box office at (309) 694-5136. All proceeds from ticket sales will directly benefit St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

Special guests include ICC Board of Trustees Chair Gale Thetford, members of the Maloof family, and former St. Jude patient Tori Lodge.  A cookie and punch reception will be offered at the close of the program, and participating organizations will showcase upcoming and past performances through interactive displays located in the lobby.

For more information on the event, please contact Brent Goken at (309) 694-5107 or Tony Voss at (309) 981-9044. Visit the event's page on Facebook at and on Instagram at

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Welcome To Our Newest Member

Teen Challenge Illinois - Peoria
2400 N. 8th St.
Pekin, IL 61554
Randy Atchley, Executive Director
Joe Rogers, Director of Operations
Teen Challenge Illinois endeavors to help people become mentally sound, emotionally balanced, socially adjusted, physically well, and spiritually alive. They also desire to enrich the lives of our students by providing actual work experience so they can improve their work ethic and become productive members of society.

Illinois Central College Hosts Home Educators and High School-Aged Students for Informational Session

               Illinois Central College will host an informational session for home educators and their high-school-aged students on Fri., March 8 from 8 am to noon on the ICC East Peoria Campus. The event provides an overview of ICC and its programs, as well as discussing ways in which the College can partner with home educators to supplement and/or extend their home school curriculum.

               Topics will include information on financial aid and admission, including ICC’s home school admission policies, as well as an overview of student activities and other ways of getting involved on campus. Students also will have the opportunity to complete surveys at the Career Center to see how their interests align with career options.
The event is free, but space is limited. Reservations are required, as breakfast will be provided. For more information or to make a reservation, visit or contact Mandy Hidden at (309) 694-5228 by Fri., March 1.

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Miller Center Resources

Miller Center Upcoming Trips

Miller Center Ballroom Dancing

Miller Center Game Night


Well-known professionals Connie Barr and Beth Jones have joined MCB Trust & Wealth Management. 

“Beth and Connie have been building relationships with people in Central Illinois for years,” said Darrin Autry, President of MCB Trust.  “Both are highly-regarded for their skills in assisting their clients with long-term management of their assets.”

Connie Barr has been a Senior Private Banking Relationship Manager for the last 15 years, helping her clients maximize their assets and leading a team of experts.  A graduate of the Peoria Chamber’s Community Leadership School, Connie has devoted many hours and much talent to nearly a dozen not-for-profit organizations in our area.  Connie is a lifelong Peoria resident and currently lives in Peoria Heights.  She and her husband Jim enjoy traveling and spending time with family, friends and their beloved dog, Bodhi. 

Beth Jones has been a Private Banking vice president and loan officer for the last 14 years.  She currently volunteers in leadership roles for EP!C and OSF Legacy of Hope.  She is dedicated to strengthening her clients’ financial security and her community. Beth lives in Peoria Heights, loves to read, and spends her free time with family and friends.

Autry added that Barr and Jones have excellent reputations for strong customer service skills and a focus on treating their customers like family. “We recognize that trust and wealth clients can choose from many different sources,” he said. “What makes the difference for us is the overlay of professional expertise with strategic advice and local service.  We are delighted that Beth and Connie have joined our team and we invite people to call or stop in to see them anytime at our Clock Tower location in East Peoria.”

MCB Trust & Wealth Management is a division of Morton Community Bank, one of the largest privately-owned banks in Illinois.  With over $3.7 Billion in assets and over 40 locations throughout Central Illinois, Morton Community Bank offers comprehensive financial services for both business and personal clients.


Join us for the 2nd annual SENIOR DAY IN THE PARK! This is a senior resource fair that provides education, health screenings, bingo, prizes, entertainment and a FREE lunch for seniors! This year we have added a Cruise In, as well as a ceremony to honor our Veteran's.
DATE: Tuesday, April 23, 2019
TIME: 9:00 AM - 1:00 PM
(Vendor set-up is Monday April 22nd from 3:00 - 4:00 PM or Tuesday April 23rd from 7:30 AM - 8:30 AM)
LOCATION: Veteran's Memorial Arena, 250 Red Bud Drive, Pekin

Vendor tables are available for the resource fair portion of this event. Registration is required and payment is due by April 5th. Please bring a door prize and your own table coverings. You can collect names at your table, or pull one out of our bucket. Lunch is available to vendors for purchase of $8.00 and includes Avanti's spaghetti, salad and bread.

This event is hosted by the Pekin Park District Miller Center, Farmington Country Manor and John Evans Supportive Living.


The Farmers Automobile Insurance Association held its annual meeting on Tuesday, February 12, 2019, at their Home Office in Pekin, Illinois.

The following directors were elected for three-year terms: Scott A. Martin, Chillicothe, Illinois; and Thomas C. Hornstein and Christine A. Schwartz, both of Pekin, Illinois.
Subscribers elected, Scott A. Martin, Chillicothe, Illinois; and Thomas C. Hornstein and Christine A. Schwartz, both of Pekin, Illinois, to the Advisory Committee.
Pekin Insurance officers elected included: Scott A. Martin, Chairman of the Board, President, and Chief Executive Officer; Steven R. Anderson, Vice Chairman of the Board; Daniel V. Connell, Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer; Todd A. Clark, Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer - Property/Casualty; Brian K. Lee, Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer - Life; Amy M. Darling, Vice President - Life Claims; Curtis A. Eeten, Vice President - Claims; Gregory L. Feller, Vice President - Sales; Joel M. Jackson, Vice President - Marketing; Subhasis Mukherjee, Vice President - Chief Information Officer; Edward A. Mulvey, Vice President - Personal Lines Underwriting and Assistant Secretary; Tyler D. Petersen, Vice President - General Counsel and Secretary; Kimberly S. Remmert, Vice President - Human Resources; Joseph C. Ricigliano, Vice President - Commercial Lines Underwriting and Assistant Secretary; Diane K. Steiner, Vice President - Life Underwriting and Assistant Secretary; Michael A. Zabinski, Vice President - Controller; Amber J. Stenger, Assistant Treasurer; Michele E. Ginther, Assistant Treasurer; and Aaron Z. Potacki, Assistant Secretary.

Pekin Insurance is a group name adopted to designate the combined operation of The Farmers Automobile Insurance Association, Pekin Insurance Company, PAC, Inc., and Pekin Life Insurance Company.

Pekin Insurance has been in business since 1921, and is one of the leading insurers in the state of Illinois, providing multiple lines of insurance. Pekin Insurance offers insurance coverage in Arizona, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Ohio, and Wisconsin through its growing agency force which now totals 1,054 independent agencies and 8,300 insurance producers in the six-kstate area. The company is headquartered in Pekin, Illinois, with service offices at Phoenix, Arizona; O’Fallon, Rockford, and Warrenville, Illinois; Indianapolis, Indiana; Des Moines, Iowa; Columbus, Ohio; and Appleton, Wisconsin.

Debbie and Keith are excited to share the update from Dennis Triggs, Methodist Health Services Corporation (MHSC) Board.

Today, we are privileged to announce an important and exciting change for UnityPoint Health in Central Illinois. Later this year, Debbie Simon, who has positively impacted healthcare in the Greater Peoria area for more than four decades, will retire as chief executive officer, and will be succeeded by Dr. Keith Knepp, currently our president.

It is not possible to announce Debbie’s retirement without acknowledging her impressive 43-year career with our organization and expressing our gratitude for her passion and leadership over the years.  She began her career in 1976 as a nurse at Methodist Hospital. She rose through the ranks of clinical and operational leadership.  She was instrumental in leading Methodist’s affiliation with UnityPoint Health in 2011 and was named the regional president and CEO in December of that year. She has since fostered continuous growth and development of the greater Peoria market to ensure quality care for the people and families there. Simon led the integrations of Proctor Hospital in 2013 and Pekin Hospital in 2017, increasing access to UPH services and expanding our physician clinics throughout the Region.  Also, under her leadership, Methodist College has grown to more than 600 students pursuing certificate, baccalaureate and graduate degrees.

At a UnityPoint Health Regional Board of Directors meeting, the board voted to accept Debbie’s resignation and to appoint Keith Knepp, MD, as the president and CEO of the Central Illinois region. Keith, formerly a family medicine physician practicing in Eureka, IL, currently serves as president of UnityPoint Health’s hospitals and clinics in Peoria. He has spent most of his career with the organization and has held a number of leadership positions. Keith will assume the role of chief executive officer on April 1 and work together with Debbie on the transition and important strategic work for the organization until she officially retires on June 30.  

Please join us in congratulating Debbie on a retirement much deserved. And congratulations to Keith who is well positioned to lead the region into the future. We look forward to celebrating them both in the months to come.

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Quinn Johnston Announces New Attorneys in Peoria and Springfield

Quinn, Johnston, Henderson, Pretorius & Cerulo is pleased to announce the addition of three lateral attorneys to its team. The firm welcomes J. Matthew Thompson as a partner and Matthew Warner as an associate attorney to its Peoria offices, and Betsy Wirth as an associate attorney to its Springfield offices.

J. Matthew Thompson, of Morton, has more than a decade of experience in medical malpractice defense and healthcare litigation, earning the distinction of being named an Illinois Emerging Lawyer and Illinois Super Lawyers Rising Star. He is the Editor-in-Chief of Illinois Defense Counsel Quarterly and serves on the Illinois Cancer Care Young Leaders’ Board.

Matthew Warner, of Morton, will focus his practice in the litigation practice group. An honors graduate, De Paul University School of Law, he previously served as an Assistant Peoria County State’s Attorney, where he prosecuted misdemeanor and felony cases, trying multiple cases to verdict.
Betsy Wirth, of Springfield, has 10 years’ experience both defending personal injury lawsuits and handling family law matters. She has earned the distinction of the AVVO Rating Excellent and being named an Illinois Super Lawyers Rising Star.
“We regularly review the trending needs of our clients and evaluate the experience and capabilities of the Quinn Johnston teams that serve them. The experiences and diverse concentrations that these attorneys bring will further strengthen and broaden our client support” said John Kamin, Managing Partner at Quinn Johnston.

About Quinn Johnston
Quinn, Johnston, Henderson, Pretorius & Cerulo has built a reputation as a leading provider of comprehensive legal services. The firm advocates on behalf of its clients ranging from private individuals to large business entities. With 23 lawyers in offices in Peoria and Springfield, Illinois, the firm represents clients with a variety of legal issues, including but not limited to, transactional law, civil litigation and healthcare. The firm’s website can be found at

Gateway Foundation: Impact of Substance Abuse on Relationships

Relationship status and substance abuse
Our work touches more than just the lives of our patients, it impacts the lives of their loved ones. One of the many examples is Debbie, who has been engaged in the recovery community after her son successfully completed treatment at Gateway Foundation.

For more of Debbie’s story, click here

In addition to health, financial and legal consequences, substance use can also fracture relationships. Addiction takes a toll on more than just the person with the substance use disorder. In many cases, families and loved ones of the individual are also negatively impacted.

Addiction is isolating for those struggling with it and their loved ones, but Gateway Foundation is here to make sure no one has to overcome it alone. Our skilled staff specialize in substance use treatment for men, womenadolescents and patients with co-occurring substance use disorders. Our specialized treatment programs also include support for families and loved ones. We treat more than just the symptoms of addiction – we treat the whole person, which is why during treatment we take families and loved ones into consideration.

Our treatment programs engage families in educational and therapeutic services to support their loved one’s recovery. Through educational programming, families and loved ones can learn about the disease of addiction, family dynamics and ways to build a supportive relationship. Weekly visitation, recovery support education and family counseling sessions ensure each person touched by addiction has the greatest chance of a successful outcome.

About Gateway Foundation
Since 1968 our goal has been straightforward: to help clients get their life back on track and achieve a life of sobriety, free from drug use and symptoms of mental illness, that is productive, socially responsible and healthy. Gateway Foundation is the largest nonprofit treatment provider in the country that specializes in the treatment of substance use disorders, providing treatment for men, women, adolescents and clients diagnosed with co-occurring mental health disorders.

Gateway's professional clinicians help thousands of individuals successfully complete treatment by developing a personalized plan that treats the underlying causes of substance abuse—not just addiction to drugs or alcohol.

Call 877.505.HOPE (4673)
to learn more about our treatment programs.

Monday, February 11, 2019


Inked Entertainment, LLC has just announced 18 more artists that are set to perform for the 2019 Tailgate N’ Tallboys Music Festival. Tailgate N’ Tallboys will be held on the riverfront in downtown Peoria for the third year. In 2019, the series will span 7 dates. June 13, 14, 15 and 16 will be the first set of concerts and July 19 and 20 will follow. There will be a final concert on Saturday, September 14th. In addition to the main stage performances, there will be numerous local, and national performers on the Tailgate N’ Crusens Side Stage, as well as various festival activities throughout the series. CLICK HERE to purchase tickets!

Announced Performers:
• June 13 Kick-off Party –
o Headliner: Bret Michaels
o Support: Matt Stell and Seckond Chaynce

• June 2019 –
o Headliners (in alphabetical order): Brett Young, Brett Eldredge, Kane Brown
o Support (in alphabetical order): Ashley McBryde, Carter Winter, Dillon Carmichael, Jimmie Allen, Jordan Davis, Lauren Alaina, Logan Mize, Michael Ray, Mitchell Tenpenny, Muscadine Bloodline and Sweet Tea Trio.
o Crusens Side Stage (in alphabetical order): Aileeah Colgan, Devin Clemons Band, Joe Stamm
Band, Josh Phillips, and Tasji Bachman

• July 2019 –
o Headliner (in alphabetical order): Aaron Lewis, Clutch, Jamey Johnson, Tyler Childers
o Support (in alphabetical order): Bishop Gunn, Dallas Moore, Josh Card, The Sisterhood and The Steel Woods.
o Tailgate N’ Crusens Side Stage (in alphabetical order): Craig Gerdes, Billy Don Burns and Bryan James.

• September 14, 2019 – (more yet to announce including direct support)
o Headliner: Alabama
o Support (in alphabetical order): Diamond Rio, The NATU Band and Mason Ramsey.
o Tailgate N’ Crusens Side Stage: New City Road

June 13, 2019 will be the Kick-off Party to the festival. All Ticket holders (including multi day passes and single day passes) will receive free entry into the Kick-off Party. Single day tickets for the kick-off party will be $15 for those without festival passes. Those tickets are available now.
Inked Entertainment has also been working with the Peoria Area Convention and Visitors Bureau to set up discounted hotel rooms at many area hotels for concert goers. A link to the reservation system is be located on the festival website: (under the travel section) now. You can also find this link on There is a limited amount of rooms on hold at negotiated prices, once these are sold out they are gone. In addition to the hotel rooms, Tailgate N’ Tallboys has secured a new camping location for the 2019 June weekend, at the Heart of Illinois Fairgrounds. Full hookup and primitive spots for campers and tents is available. This will include shuttle service to and from the festival throughout the day. There will be onsite showers, security and festival personal 24 hrs from Thurs – Monday of the June weekend.

There will be multiple new amenities and logistical changes in 2019. The stage will now be south facing with the stage facing bridge on what was the backend of Festival Park (venue). This allows for more room for those with chairs and allows for the growing attendance that the festival has experienced over the past few years. The VIP section will have a full-service bar, air-conditioned restrooms and express entrances.

The new NASH Pass is available for all three weekends. Included in this pass is secure gated parking, a pre-show reception at Cumulus Studios (with drinks and food), a weekend VIP Pass, entry through a special VIP entrance that is close to parking and leads right into the VIP section.
The 6 Pack Pass is once again be available for the festival. This allows purchaser entry into all dates of the series for a deeply discounted price.

6 Pack Passes, June Weekend Passes and July Weekend Passes are currently on sale at Tier 1 Prices and slated to increase in price on March 4 (or when allotted tickets sell out at Tier 1 pricing). Single Day tickets are officially on sale now for each date. will become available in early Spring, when more artists are added to the schedules.

There are many more announcements in the works, including a new mobile app for the festival so keep up with the latest by following Tailgate N’ Tallboys on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, or by visiting the official website at

About Tailgate N’ Tallboys
Tailgate N’ Tallboys is Central Illinois #1 Country Music Festival. The Music Series is designed with the true Midwestern summer concert goer in mind. Boasting top country acts to span over the summer months all at one low cost ticket price. Our 6 Pack Pass allows entry to 6 concerts for practically the cost of one concert. This allows our Midwestern country music lovers the ability to attend one or all six shows on the calendar to keep the party going all summer long.


               Registration opens March 11 for the summer 2019 sessions of Illinois Central College’s popular College for Kids program. The summer program features fun and educational classes for students entering fourth through twelfth grades. Session 1 runs Monday –Thursday, June 10-21, and Session 2 runs Monday ─ Thursday, July 8-19. 
               Kids are sure to find topics to fit their interests, with classes available in leadership skills, French, chess, cooking, dance, science, art, Harry Potter, balloon artistry, computer design and coding, and much more. Several new classes are being offered this year. Some of these include: “The Price is Right!,” which teaches kids to earn, save and spend in a fun way; “Disney 101,” in which students will learn all things Disney-related; and “Python Programmers,” which explores coding with Python to create engaging apps and games.
Kids can extend their fun by participating in additional off-site Friday Fun Trips offered from 8:30 am to 2:30 pm on each Friday of College for Kids. Cost for these Friday fun sessions ranges from $75 to $95.
Two additional class options extend the day and accommodate working parents -- Early Bird Club, available Monday through Thursday from 7:15 to 8:15 am, and Club CFK, available from 3:15 to 5 pm. Both Early Bird Club and Club CFK feature games and computers. Cost for Early Bird Club is an additional $45, and Club CFK costs an additional $75.
Tuition per class varies for each class, based on instructional materials needed. Space is limited. Registration is available March 11 by phone at (309) 690-6900, or online at A complete listing of classes, descriptions and registration materials also will be available online.
               For questions, contact ICC Youth Programs Coordinator Steffi Xu at (309) 690-6916 or email                                                             

Illinois Central College “Between the Lines” Program Explores Extreme Portrayals of 1940’s African American Female Characters

               Join Illinois Central College’s “Between the Lines” program to discuss “The 1940’s African American Female Character: Gender Equality is Such an Illusion,” on Tues., March 5 from 7 to 8 pm in the Arbor Hall Auditorium on the Peoria Campus, located at 5407 N. University St., Peoria. Andrea Walton will lead the discussion.
               Female characters, much like real life, have been portrayed in seemingly radical (according to present-day norm) ways. Many times the "ideal woman" is one who submissively accepts her subservient plight in life, without much resistance. Yet readers find their interests pique by authors who dare to portray their heroine as one who bucks the system in an attempt to afford herself the same opportunities as male counterparts. In Ramona Lowe's “Woman in the Window” and Charles Chesnutt's “Uncle Wellington's Wives,” these two writers expose some of these extreme portrayals of African American women during the 1940's.
               “Between the Lines” is a lecture series presented by the faculty members of the English, Humanities and Language Studies Department at ICC. The goal of the series is to offer literary presentations that will interest students and people in the community, as well as promote reading literacy and scholarly study.
               The programs are free and open to the public.

               For more information, please contact Jim Sullivan at or

SCORE: Tax Planning for Small Businesses

SCORE Peoria has been invited to co-sponsor this workshop with the Turner Center for Entrepreneurship/Illinois Small Business Development Center at Bradley University. Please take a moment to review this invitation and consider attending this SBDC workshop.

Tax Planning for Small Businesses

Tax planning is the process of considering various tax options in order to legally conduct and operate your small business. Good tax advice is a very valuable commodity. If you are a start-up business or if you are considering starting your own business, then this training event is for you.

Date:  Wed, February 20, 2019

Location: PeoriaNEXT Innovation Center

Time: 11:30am – 1:30pm

11:30 – 11:45 Lunch & Networking
11:45 – 1:15   Introductions / Presentation
 1:15 – 1:30   Q & A, Adjourn
Discussion Points:
·     Determine when and how to eliminate or reduce taxes
·     Keeping accurate accounting
·     Improper allocation of income
·     How to lower your tax rate
·     Controlling the time when tax must be paid
·     Claiming tax credits
·     Avoiding the most common and costly tax planning mistakes
·     Learn ways to save on business income taxes
·     Planning and organizing for a new business

William Sharpe has been in the tax business since he was 8 years old, when he literally started in the mail room of the family enterprise. William has vivid memories of tagging along with his mother to help with whatever work needed to be done at the office. That’s how a family business operates…all hands on deck.
William started preparing tax returns in 1999. He spent the next several years shadowing his  read more...

Cost: (includes lunch & handouts)
Early Bird: $35/pp through February 10, 2019
$50/pp February 11 – February 17, 2019
Deadline to register: 5pm Sunday, February 17, 2019

 Questions, please call the Illinois SBDC at (309) 677-2992.