Wednesday, July 31, 2019

Prime Time Peoria

Maquet's Rail House Ribbon Cutting

The Pekin Area Chamber of Commerce was at Maquet's Rail House on July 26th to help celebrate the grand opening of their expanded space and their new brick oven pizza.  Owner Dustin Maquet was joined by his employees and representatives from the Pekin Area Chamber of Commerce for the event.  Dennis Short, Vice President of the Chamber, read a proclamation congratulating them on their accomplishments and proclaiming it "Maquet's Rail House Day" in Pekin.  You can see more pictures from this event at:

Pekin Estates Presents the Central Illinois Banjo Club

Teen Challenge Annual Banquet

Liberty Village Vintage Car & Motorcycle Show

National Black Chamber of Commerce Recognizes Illinois American Water with Inclusion and Diversity Award

Illinois American Water President Bruce Hauk was awarded the 2019 Inclusion and Diversity Award
by the National Black Chamber of Commerce (NBCC) during its annual conference held last week in Atlanta, Georgia. The award is presented annually to an individual who champions inclusion and diversity within his or her company.

NBCC President Harry C. Alford said, “Mr. Hauk’s focus on inclusion and diversity at American Water has played an instrumental role in increasing the company’s partnerships with minority businesses, diverse suppliers and diverse employee candidates. The National Black Chamber of Commerce was proud to present Bruce Hauk with the 2019 Inclusion and Diversity Award.”
American Water sees diversity as a vital element in creating an environment where differences are celebrated and contribute to success. This is why the company created a national Inclusion & Diversity Council. The Council is made up of executive sponsors, an advisory council and champions from across the workforce. Hauk is an Executive Sponsor of the Council. Hauk said of NBCC’s recognition, “I am honored to receive this award and I share it with the entire Illinois American Water team. Our focus on inclusion and diversity betters our organization and the water industry as a whole, while creating opportunities for others to also be successful in the communities we serve.”
Illinois American Water has taken a number of steps to further its position as a leader in inclusion and diversity. A strategic focus on events, relationship building and data improvement has resulted in the following results:

- In 2018, spend with diverse suppliers was 52% of overall spend. Since 2014, the value of goods and services Illinois American Water purchased from diverse businesses increased by 48% or over $68 million. This represents a 25x increased spend with MBE-certified suppliers and a 4x increased spend with WBE-certified suppliers. To help maintain a steady pipeline of diverse suppliers, the company meets annually with entrepreneurs, business owners and contractors.

- In 2018, Illinois American Water purchased more than $138 million in goods and services from certified diverse suppliers.

- Illinois American Water partners with organizations to host and attend diversity outreach events to identify potential new employees with diverse backgrounds.

- Total diverse population at Illinois American Water has averaged 30%.

- In 2015, Illinois American Water joined other Illinois utilities in forming the Illinois Utilities Business Diversity Council. This council is designed to grow business opportunities for diverse suppliers through closer collaboration, technical development and sharing of best practices.
Illinois American Water’s commitment to diversity and inclusion was also recognized last year by the Illinois Black Chamber of Commerce and by the East St. Louis Chapter of the NAACP in 2017 and 2018.

About Illinois American Water - Illinois American Water, a subsidiary of American Water (NYSE: AWK), is the largest investor owned water utility in the state, providing high-quality and reliable water and/or wastewater services to approximately 1.3 million
people. American Water also operates a customer service center in Alton and a quality control and research laboratory in Belleville. With a history dating back to 1886, American Water is the largest and most geographically diverse U.S. publicly traded water and
wastewater utility company. The company employs more than 7,100 dedicated professionals who provide regulated and market based drinking water, wastewater and other related services to more than 14 million people in 46 states. American Water provides safe, clean, affordable and reliable water services to our customers to make sure we keep their lives flowing. For more information,
visit and follow American Water on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

Illinois Central College Provides Support to Midstate College

Illinois Central College’s leadership team met with Midstate College’s President and Provost to offer support for Midstate students in light of the college’s recent closing announcement. 
Illinois Central College, believing in access to higher education for all, has first and foremost, committed to supporting Midstate students by providing options to complete a credential.  Additionally, ICC is exploring outplacement opportunities for Midstate employees, administrative support, and faculty to ensure there are no gaps in access to higher education in the district. 
ICC has created an online expedited admission process, in which students will be asked for a very limited amount of information.  This will allow Midstate to release students’ transcripts and records to ICC, available at
ICC will host an Open House on Monday, August 5 from 4 to 8 pm on the Peoria Campus at Arbor Hall.  ICC is prepared to provide Midstate students and their families’ information and assistance tailored specifically to their situation. However, any and all interested students, as well as adult learners looking to switch careers or retool their job skills, are welcome to attend the Open House. 
All Midstate students are welcome, including students at the beginning of their college education and those enrolled in a four-year program.  ICC transfer specialists will be available to provide assistance on the expedited admission process, financial aid, and advising specifically for Midstate students.  ICC will attend Midstate College’s transfer fair on August 13, as well.
Midstate students looking for information prior to the Open House can call ICC Admissions at (309) 694-5200 or
                For more information, visit

Monday, July 29, 2019

White Positioned to Succeed Mackaman at The Dirksen Congressional Center

Last week, The Dirksen Congressional Center’s Board of Directors approved a plan to hire Tiffany White to succeed Executive Director Frank Mackaman, who will retire in 2020. White is the current Chief of Staff to State Representative Mike Unes (R-East Peoria) and has served on The Center’s Board since last year. For the time being, Mackaman will remain on staff as The Center’s Historian and Archivist—a role that will be assumed by White at a later date. She will begin her work as Executive Director on Sept. 1.
“We knew that finding a replacement for someone like Frank was going to be a daunting task,” said Board President Timm Schwartz. “We were most fortunate to have an outstanding person right on our own Board. The Center is thrilled to have Tiffany to assume Frank’s position.”
The Dirksen Congressional Center was established in 1975. It is named for Everett McKinley Dirksen of Pekin, who served in the U.S. House of Representatives, as Minority Leader of the U.S. Senate, and who was instrumental in the passage of the 1964 Civil Rights Act.
The Center, a non-partisan, not-for-profit organization, promotes research and scholarship to advance the public understanding of the U.S. Congress. Among its more than 200 historical collections are the congressional papers of Dirksen, Harold H. Velde, Robert H. Michel, and Ray LaHood. The Center also has invested over $2,000,000 in research, publications, conferences, workshops, and scholarships—all dealing with the nation’s legislative branch of government.
“I am delighted that the Board of Directors has found such an experienced, talented, and enthusiastic person as Tiffany White to continue The Center’s important work,” said Mackaman. Reflecting on his more than 30 years at The Center, he added: “What began as a simple collection of papers in 1975 has grown to become a nationally acclaimed resource for scholars, teachers, public policy analysts, and students of government. With Tiffany at the helm, The Center’s future is bright.”
White is a 2005 Graduate of Pekin Community High School, and a 2008 Graduate of the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign where she studied both Political Science and Speech Communication. She has been highly active both personally and professionally in the local
community throughout her entire career, which began in the congressional office that has been served by the same public officials whose papers White will now oversee.
"The Dirksen Congressional Center represents many sources of my pride for our local community,” White said, “and I am so humbled to have been asked to assume this role. Helping to maintain the legacy of The Center—along with the legacy of great public servants whose influence is kept alive by The Center's mission—will undoubtedly be one of the highest privileges of my life and career. I could not possibly be more enthused about this opportunity, and am anxious to dedicate myself to this work."
White spent five years as a staff member in the 18th District Congressional Office before leaving to accept the role of Executive Director of Pekin Main Street. She has served on State Representative Mike Unes’s staff since 2015.
"Tiffany is a great asset to any organization,” Unes said. “Given her experience and passion for research and history, she is a natural choice for The Dirksen Center. I am happy for Tiffany and I am confident that The Dirksen Center will be pleased with her work."

Thursday, July 25, 2019

Boost Mobile Back to School Event

#Pekin #CentralIllinois join us on August 10th for Boost Mobile Pekin Back to School event! We will be providing the first 75 children with free backpacks with school supplies.

In addition we will have free prizes for all! FREE PHONES WHEN YOU SWITCH/FREE ACTIVATION. Bounce house and FREE ICE CREAM!

Free food and a HD TV GIVEAWAY! Live TV drawing at 3pm. You can stop by our location today and enter to win!

FREE: Bradley Senior Consulting Project

The Illinois Small Business Development Center, at Bradley University, is accepting applications for the Fall 2019 semester for anyone wanting to participate in a Senior Consulting Project at no charge.

Are you needing assistance in creating:

·     a marketing strategy;

·     a feasibility study;

·     a strategic growth plan;

·     or launching a new product or service?

Faculty-led, student-driven business consulting teams of graduating senior students in the Foster College of Business will act as business consultants to identify and solve your business dilemmas.

Teams of 4-6 students, from a mix of disciplines, work with small- and medium-sized businesses to develop a strategic plan. This plan contains:

·     an in-depth competitive analysis;

·     an assessment of the organization;

·     surveys/analyses of customers/potential customers;

·     recommendations and a timeline.

In early December, you will receive a written report during the oral presentation of the student team's recommendations.

Any business may apply; however, the projects tend to lean toward restaurants, financial institutions, retail stores, service establishments and manufacturers.

Don't wait, the Fall semester begins next month. Submit your application by Close of Business on Friday, August 2nd.

Fall 2019 semester runs August 28, 2019 - December 11, 2019.

For full consideration, applications must be received by:

5:00 PM (CDT)
Friday, August 2, 2019
Apply now at:

Wednesday, July 24, 2019

CASA of the Tenth Judicial Circuit in Need of Volunteers

CASA is looking for volunteer advocates to answer the call and speak up for an abused and/or neglected child. There is a critical shortage of volunteers to serve the nearly 1,800 children involved with the child welfare system in Peoria, Tazewell, Marshall, Putnam and Stark counties. After completion of a pre-service training, volunteers need only commit to a minimum of 5 hours a month on their own schedule. CASA volunteers are officers of the court and monitor the progress of a child’s case by speaking up for the best interests of the child. 

To learn more about how you can Change a Child’s Story™ please join us at a General Information Meeting in your area! Meetings are taking place July 25th from 5:30 – 7:30pm at the Peoria Public Library North Branch McKenzie Room, August 1st from 5:30 – 7:00pm at the Tremont District Library, and August 8th from 5:30 – 7:00pm at the Washington District Library. To get started immediately, contact us 309-669-2939 or Additional Information can be found at 

Illinois Central College Wetland Construction Field Day

Come see the installation of a constructed wetland on ICC’s East Peoria campus.  During the field day, the public can experience a guided tour of the construction site, with interactive stations along the way.  Experts also will be available to discuss agriculture, conservation, and pollinator initiatives.
Lunch will be provided free of charge during this event.  Farmers, land owners, agribusiness professionals and students, conservationists, and the public are encouraged to attend.

Available for interviews:
  • Pete Fandel, ICC Professor of Agriculture and Demonstration Farm project leader
  • Jill Kostel, PhD, Senior Environmental Engineer, The Wetlands Initiative
  • Additional industry experts

Thursday, July 25, 2019  9:00 am – noon

ICC East Peoria Campus
Demonstration Farm Area*

Kuhl Insurance: Employee Benefits

Businesses offer benefits and perks to their employees for a variety of reasons. Please join us to explore if your employee benefits program matches your reasons for offering them, protects your employees as intended, and ideas to close any gaps. Jeff Mohl, Executive Sales Consultant, of Guardian Life Insurance Company, will share some of the latest ideas in the ever-changing benefits arena.

Here are just a few of the topics to be covered:
Layering benefits for comprehensive protection
Hidden ROI of a comprehensive benefits program
Protecting your employees' income through disability coverage
Real life examples of how benefits save employees' physical, mental, and financial health


Employee Benefits - Protecting Your People from 'What if'

August 15, 2019
9:00am - 11:00am
Kuhl Insurance
632 W. Jefferson Street
Morton, IL 61550

It's never too early to register here!

Ronald McDonald House Charities® of Central Illinois Announces Five New Board Members

Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Illinois (RMHCCI) is pleased to announce five new members joining the RMHCCI Board of Directors.
Justin Ball, Vice President for Enrollment Management at Bradley University, has a passion for promoting access and affordability to higher education. He serves on the board of the Peoria Area Chamber of Commerce and is an active member of Redeemer Lutheran Church. Ball, born in Peoria, grew up in Canton, IL. He earned his M.B.A. from St. Ambrose University, Ph.D. in Educational Policy and Leadership Studies from University of Iowa. He lives with his wife, Jessica, and daughter, Chloe, in Mapleton, IL.

M. Jawad Javed, MD, FAAP
, Division Head and Medical Director of the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Children’s Hospital of Illinois, is a Midwest native. Javed grew up in Northwest Indiana and has been a resident of the Peoria, Illinois community for the past decade. He has been involved in the education and research of pediatricians over the past decade both regionally and nationally. In addition, he sits on numerous faculty committees on scholarship, quality, research, and patient outcomes both at Children’s Hospital of Illinois and the University of Illinois College of Medicine. He resides in Dunlap, IL with his wife, Zohra, who is also a pediatrician in the Peoria community.
MaryBeth Miller, Operations Manager, HSHS St. John's Hospital, Women and Children's Center, began her career in 1985 as a staff nurse in the neonatal intensive care unit. As the operations manager she supports the leadership team in the Women and Children’s Center. She has three adult children with her late husband Scott: Eric in Denver, Allison (husband Steve and daughter Claire) in St. Louis and Meredith in Rochester, IL.
Christopher Setti, Chief Executive Officer, Greater Peoria Economic Development Council (GPEDC), is responsible for the successful development, implementation, measuring and sharing of Greater Peoria's regional economic development strategy. He has worked for the City of Peoria for twelve years, the last five of which were serving as the Assistant City Manager and Director of Economic Development. He and his wife, Eileen, have two daughters and live on the West Bluff of Peoria.
David Matthews is a recently retired community banker from Prophetstown in northwest Illinois. For over 30 years, Dave was Executive Vice President and a member of the Board of Directors of a $600 million community bank… Matthews served for 25 years as President of a Community Foundation, helped to form an Education Foundation for the local schools and served on a number of boards and committees of various local community organizations. He and his wife, Cathy are members of Connect Church in Washington.

The Federal Correctional Institution in Pekin is Hosting a Career Fair

The Federal Correctional Institution at 2600 South Second Street in Pekin is Hosting a Career Fair Aug 28th 9:00 AM to 2:00 PM Immediate Openings Available

The Federal Correctional Institution in Pekin, Illinois, is actively seeking to hire qualified people as Correctional Officers.

Some BENEFITS Include:

- Starting salary: $41,868.00 per annum

- Pension with 25 years of service or 20 years of service at age 50

- 401k (Thrift Savings Plan) w/5% matching

- Supplemental Annuity upon retirement (replaced by Social Security upon reaching age 62)

- Health / Dental / Vison Insurance

- Life Insurance

- Vacation and Sick Time.

For questions, you may call Jeff Symons at FCI Pekin Human Resources at 309-346-8588 x 1112. All those interested should apply for Correctional Officer on USAJOBS.GOV.

Military Veterans please send in your DD-214 and a detailed resume to PEK/ for VRA consideration as well.

Tuesday, July 23, 2019

Savant Continues to be Recognized as a Top Investment and Accounting Leader

Savant Capital Management, a nationally-recognized fee-only wealth management firm headquartered in Rockford, IL, with locations in Peoria, Chicago, Downers Grove, Freeport, Hoffman Estates, Naperville, St. Charles, Sterling, and Wilmette, IL; Santa Fe, NM; McLean, VA; and Madison and Park Falls, WI, has been recognized by Financial Advisor, Financial Times, and InvestmentNews as a leading Registered Investment Advisor (RIA) firm and by Accounting Today as one of the nation’s leading CPA firms by assets under management (AUM).

Financial Advisor magazine has ranked Savant #48 in its 2019 list of top RIA firms. The list includes nearly 700 RIAs from across the nation and is based on a survey of the firms’ discretionary AUM. This is the tenth consecutive year Savant has made the list. To view the complete list, click here.

Additionally, Savant has been named to the Financial Times’ “FT 300: Top Registered Investment Advisers” list for 2019. Areas of consideration include adviser AUM, asset growth, the company’s age, industry certifications of key employees, SEC compliance record and online accessibility. This is the fifth year that Savant has been recognized. Click here to view the complete list.

The firm also was named by financial trade publication InvestmentNews as one of its 2019 nationwide ranking of leading RIA firms. Savant ranked #32 on the comprehensive list of more than 2,200 firms, climbing 15 spots from 2018. The list is based on total AUM and is the twelfth time Savant has been recognized. To view the full list, click here.

Accounting Today magazine has ranked Savant for the seventh time in its “Top Wealth Magnet” list. Savant was ranked #5 out of 150 leading CPA financial planning firms in the United States. Savant is part of the “Billion Dollar Club” category based on AUM, now managing over $6 billion in assets for its clients. Click here for the complete list.

“We are proud to be recognized by the industry’s leading trade media, alongside the nation’s most successful RIA and accounting firms,” said Brent Brodeski, CEO of Savant. “As we celebrate these achievements with Team Savant and with our clients, we will continue pursuing our vision of helping to build ideal futures for our clients, our team, and the communities we serve.”
For more information about Savant Capital Management, visit

About Savant Capital Management
Savant Capital Management is a leading independent, nationally-recognized, fee-only firm serving clients for 30 years with over $6 billion in assets under management. As a trusted advisor, Savant Capital Management offers investment management, financial planning, retirement plan and family office services to financially established individuals and institutions. Savant also offers corporate accounting, tax preparation, payroll and consulting through its affiliate, Savant Tax & Consulting.

Savant Capital Management is a Registered Investment Advisor. Rankings and/or recognition by unaffiliated rating services and/or publications should not be construed by a client or prospective client as a guarantee that he/she will experience a certain level of results if Savant is engaged, or continues to be engaged, to provide investment advisory services, nor should it be construed as a current or past endorsement of Savant by any of its clients. Savant did not pay to participate in these rankings and/or recognitions. Click here for more information about Savant or to view our Important Disclosures.

Monday, July 22, 2019

Welcome to Our Newest Member

Central Illinois Community Blood Center
2396 W. Nebraska Ave. 
Peoria, IL 61604
William Hudson
Central Illinois Community Blood Center was established in 1971. Now a part of the Mississippi Valley Regional Blood Center, they provide blood products and services to more than 90 hospitals. MVRBC collects blood from 18 sites and at more than 5000 mobile blood drives each year.

July Biz Barometer

R&B Productions Presents the 2019 HOIHA/PACVB Annual Golf Scramble

 R&B Productions Presents the 2019 HOIHA/PACVB Golf Outing on Wednesday August 28th.

Morningside of Pekin 10 Year Diamond Anniversary Celebration

Roger Goodson Leadership Role with Illinois American Water Expanded to include Eastern Division

Roger Goodson, senior operations manager for Illinois American Water’s Western Division, will now also provide leadership in the company’s Eastern Division of the state, effective July 8, 2019. In addition to managing operations in Illinois American Water’s Peoria, Pekin and Lincoln Districts,
Goodson’s expanded leadership role will include providing oversight in the Champaign County, Pontiac, Sterling and Streator Districts.

Goodson joined Illinois American Water in 2011 as an operations superintendent in Pekin. In 2012, he was promoted to overseeing both Pekin and Peoria operations, and, in 2015, he became senior manager of the Western Division. Prior to joining Illinois American Water, Goodson was director of operations for a large site development company and senior project manager for many affordable housing construction projects. He began his career in the water industry in 1992 with the City of Aurora, where he worked for over 14 years. Mike Smyth, Illinois American Water Vice President of Operations, said, “Roger is a trusted leadership at Illinois American Water. His leadership and expertise in the water industry will serve our customers well in this new, expanded role.”

Goodson has a bachelor’s degree in management and a master’s degree in business administration, both from Aurora University. He also holds a Class A Illinois water operators certificate.

About Illinois American Water - Illinois American Water, a subsidiary of American Water (NYSE: AWK), is the largest investor-owned water utility in the state, providing high-quality and reliable water and/or wastewater services to approximately 1.3 million people. American Water also operates a customer service center in Alton and a quality control and research laboratory in Belleville. With a history dating back to 1886, American Water is the largest and most geographically diverse U.S. publicly traded water and wastewater utility company. The company employs more than 7,100 dedicated professionals who provide regulated and market-based drinking water, wastewater and other related services to more than 14 million people in 46 states. American Water provides safe, clean, affordable and reliable water services to our customers to make sure we keep their lives
flowing. For more information, visit and follow American Water on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

Mackinaw Valley Vineyard

Vineyard News
July & August

Music in the Vineyard
7/20 Bubblegum Jack, 7pm
7/26 Brushville, 8pm Friday, $10
7/27 Jury's Out , 7pm
8/03 Phannie Rae &
the Soul Shakers
Hawaiian Shirt night for CRC LIFE in Honor of Paul Hahn
8/10 Whiskey's Gone
8/17 Champaign Freight
8/24 The Mystery Machine
Saturdays $5pp, 12& under free

7/21 ART & WINE FESTIVAL- free to attend
Shop for Art in the Pavilion building
Music by Greg Williams
                      Food- Lions Club, Gramma Nana Ice Cream
                   Sandwich Cookies & Treats,
Ropp Cheeses & Chocolatier Chocolates
Free Face Painting * Sidewalk Chalk Canvas for kids
CAR CRUISE IN- organized by Midstate Cruisers Car Club- bring your Ride and cruise in for some wine, food, art & FUN.

7/25 Mandala Wine Glass Painting Class, 630-8pm

8/16 PIN UP Contest with the
Whimsical Wine Woman
 and Rock'in Music to follow
with DJ- Tad Johnson- $5 pp, 7-11pm

9/01 Grape Stomp & Harvest Festival , 12-6pm
$5pp, 12 & under free- HELD RAIN OR SHINE

Click here for more information on how to attend or participate

Two Silver Medals at Illinois State Competition

Frontenac Red table wine-Dry and Delicious
Green Dragon-  Our NEW Fortified Wine made by combining Brandy that we had distilled from a red blend back into a finished red wine blend. A Very Rich and smooth aperitif 18% ABV.

 Good News -BACK ON THE SHELVES - Two Favorites
Edelweiss White Sweet Wine
White Dragon

glass of wine in the hands of friends at the restaurant on holiday

309-359-9463 or