Graybar Electric Inc. leases 32,000 SF of office space at Hamilton Lakes in Itasca

Hamilton Lakes Itasca IL

Hamilton Partners recently announced that Graybar Electric Inc., a Fortune 500 company that specializes in supply chain management services and is a leading North American distributor of high-quality components, equipment, and materials, has leased office space in Hamilton Lakes in Itasca, Illinois. As a leading distributor of electrical, communications, data networking and security products, Graybar helps its customers power, network, and secure their facilities with speed, intelligence, and efficiency. 

Graybar will be occupying 32,174 Square Feet, a full floor at One Pierce Place. One Pierce Place is located in the center of Hamilton Lakes Business Park, positioned between lakes and the 3 mile walking path. The location offers proximity to I-290, I-390 and O’Hare International Airport. 

Graybar Electric was represented by Jason Simon, of Colliers International. One Pierce Place, owned by Balfour Pacific & Hamilton Partners Inc., was represented by Patrick McKillen of Hamilton Partners. 


Hamilton Partners Inc., is one of the nation’s leading privately held commercial real estate development companies. The company is headquartered in Itasca, Illinois and has regional offices in Buffalo Grove, Downers Grove, Salt Lake City, Utah, Phoenix, Arizona, and Denver, Colorado. Hamilton Partners has full-service management offices in 15 additional locations throughout the Chicago area. Over the past 34 years, the company has developed over 39 million square feet and continues to own numerous prestigious and financially successful, commercial office, industrial, and retail projects. 

ComEd Recognized as National Utility Leader in Attracting Jobs, Investment to Region

 Electric utility ranked among top 1 percent of all American utilities for reliable and clean energy infrastructure 

 ComEd has been recognized again for its leading role in supporting economic growth and job creation across northern Illinois, according to new rankings by Site Selection Magazine, which named ComEd as one of the Top 20 utilities in economic development. Selected from more than 3,300 electric companies across the country, ComEd is among the top 1 percent of all utilities in attracting new businesses, jobs and investments. 

“Companies continue to invest in northern Illinois thanks to the unparalleled access to clean, affordable and reliable power that is essential for meeting the demands of today’s digital economy,” said Gil C. Quinones, CEO of ComEd. “With industry-leading reliability fueled by our investments in grid modernization, ComEd’s service territory is attracting investment from some of the most innovative and exciting industries in the nation. We are committed to continuing the grid investments needed to transition to a clean energy future and power growth of Illinois companies that bring jobs and opportunity into the communities we are proud to serve.” 

This marks the ninth year ComEd has earned the recognition – a testament to the company’s strong record in delivering clean, reliable and affordable power for 9 million people and businesses in the region, including some of the world’s largest companies. Last year alone, ComEd helped launch 16 new commercial projects – with commitments to invest $3 billion locally and create 4,700 new jobs. 

 “Just as utilities’ generation and distribution portfolios turn toward renewables and smart technologies, the economic developers at Top Utilities like ComEd are helping their communities pursue sustainable growth by cultivating the flow of smart capital and talent,” said Adam Bruns, managing editor of Site Selection. 

The magazine attributes ComEd’s investments to enhance grid infrastructure and promote reliable, clean energy service as key factors that are driving jobs and new business to Illinois. This includes: 

Reliability

ComEd has a key role to play in powering business, as it continues to make the investments necessary to enhance resiliency in the face of climate change, improve safety, and achieve new technology needs in an increasingly clean energy economy. These investments are paying off: ComEd’s overall reliability has improved 79 percent since investments began in 2011, avoiding more than 18.6 million customer interruptions and producing more than $3 billion in savings, including avoided business losses. ComEd’s industry-leading reliability performance continues in 2022, with the company providing its highest reliability on record for the first half of the year, and record storm restoration time amid an uptick in severe storms. 

Clean Energy Access

In support of Illinois’ goal of 100 percent clean energy by 2050, ComEd is working closely with a growing developer community to increase access to clean and affordable solar energy in the residential and commercial and industrial (C&I) sectors. Since the community solar program launched, subscribers have grown substantially – from 700 in 2016 to nearly 30,000 residential customers today. 

ComEd offers C&I customers a Distributed Generation (DG) Rebate of $250 per kilowatt of installed solar energy, which helps offset the out-of-pocket costs of installing a qualified renewable energy generating system. In the past four years, ComEd has provided close to $94 million in DG rebates to expand solar projects in northern Illinois. 

EV Expansion

ComEd has also proposed a Beneficial Electrification (BE) plan which commits $300 million over the next three years to help remove barriers to beneficial technologies, including electric vehicles (EVs). A mix of rebates and programs will help communities and customers advance toward clean transportation goals as outlined by the State of Illinois’ Climate and Equitable Jobs Act (CEJA) law, which seeks to put 1 million vehicles on the road by 2030. The plan also includes technical assistance for businesses with customized fleet assessments, and a new rate delivery class that would help large business customers offset the upfront costs of installing EV charging infrastructure at scale. 

Affordability

ComEd continues to expand programs that help customers save on energy, while keeping monthly bills among the lowest in the nation. ComEd customer bills today are in line with the past several years, and next year’s average bills are expected to remain below those of the 10 largest U.S. metropolitan areas. Recently, ComEd’s energy efficiency program hit a critical milestone, saving northern Illinois communities a total of over $7 billion on their electric bills – including nearly $3 billion in savings for businesses – since 2008. 

Workforce Development

To prepare communities for a clean energy future, ComEd is expanding workforce training programs that prepare more diverse, local workers with clean technology skills. Last year, more than 1,700 local residents participated in job training programs sponsored by ComEd, including programs to prepare residents for overhead electrical, construction and solar careers. These programs have a strong job placement rate, with close to 75 percent or more hired upon completion. 

“Access to reliable, affordable, and increasingly sustainable energy is key to companies making location decisions,” said Intersect Illinois CEO Dan Seals. “We’re pleased to see ComEd recognized for its commitment to economic development in Illinois.” 

“We congratulate ComEd on news that it is recognized as a national leader in economic development by Site Selection Magazine,” said Michael Fassnacht, President & CEO, World Business Chicago, Chief Marketing Officer, City of Chicago. “This recognition is well deserved and testament to ComEd’s long-term commitment to the Chicagoland region, strong performance and innovative energy efficiency programs, all of which are vital to helping local businesses thrive.” 

“ComEd’s track record on reliability, resiliency and affordability has been vital to the growth of our region, and will play a key role in driving economic investment and jobs here for many years to come,” said Will County Center for Economic Development CEO, Doug Pryor. “Businesses know that ComEd provides industry-leading reliability, low and stable pricing, business-focused energy efficiency programs and renewable energy solutions that are critical to businesses aiming for long term sustainability. This provides businesses confidence knowing that when they choose Will County and northern Illinois, they’ll remain competitive in an ever-changing climate.” 

ComEd’s year over year investments in grid modernization continue to drive new business to the area. This includes strong growth by sectors like data centers, logistics and manufacturing, all of which depend on a high volume of clean energy to power local operations and customers served around the world. 

To read the 2022 Top Utilities Ranking story by Site Selection magazine, click here. 

Crown Castle Joins Choose DuPage Board of Directors

Crown Castle DuPage County

Choose DuPage is pleased to announce Crown Castle has joined the Choose DuPage board of directors. Crown Castle, located in Downers Grove, designs and builds solutions for their clients’ unique connectivity needs. They own, operate and lease more than 40,000 cell towers and approximately 85,000 thousand miles of fiber supporting small cells and fiber solutions across every major U.S. Market.

“Joining the board of Choose DuPage is a commitment to advancing our region,” said Greg Bedalov, president and CEO of Choose DuPage. “We are excited to work with Crown Castle and our other private and public-sector leaders to promote DuPage as a premier global business location and support our local business climate.”

“We are thrilled to be joining Choose DuPage and their mission to make DuPage County a premier location for those who both work in and call the area home,” said Crown Castle Public Affairs Manager Renee Morales. “Our infrastructure connects communities to essential data, technology, and wireless service – bringing information, ideas and innovations to the people and businesses that need them. As new technologies continue to advance, we look forward to bringing connectivity to the region, ensuring DuPage County remains a strategic location for businesses to thrive.”   

Click here to view a full list of board members.

Endotronix Announces Expansion of U.S. Headquarters in Naperville, Illinois

Endotronix

The company is constructing a new commercial manufacturing facility and anticipates expanding its workforce to support the launch of its comprehensive patient management platform for heart failure

Endotronix, Inc., a digital health and medical technology company dedicated to advancing the treatment of heart failure (HF), today announced plans to relocate and expand their headquarters in Naperville, Illinois to support the full U.S. commercial launch of its Cordella™ Heart Failure System and Pulmonary Artery (PA) Sensor, pending pre-market approval (PMA) of the sensor by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA). The new building will significantly increase Endotronix’s manufacturing and operating capacity, allowing for a 30% workforce expansion as well as continued growth opportunities in the years to come. In addition to the U.S. office, Endotronix will maintain their European office in Ireland.

“This is an exciting time for Endotronix. As we approach full enrollment in our PROACTIVE-HF clinical trial, we are looking ahead toward scaling our manufacturing and operations in anticipation of commercialization of our proactive digital heart failure system,” stated Harry Rowland, CEO of Endotronix. “Naperville offers an ideal location to plant our roots, offering a skilled workforce, affordable quality of life for our employees, desirable proximity to Chicago, and strong sense of community.”

Headquartered in the Chicago-land area since 2013, Endotronix recently signed a lease for an 80,000+ square feet facility that will more than double their current footprint. The new facility is located in the HUB 1415 building (1415 Diehl Road, Naperville, IL) and is currently undergoing custom enhancements to include a state-of-the-art cleanroom, manufacturing, quality, and administrative space. The first phase of construction is scheduled to be completed in early 2023 with hybrid workspace specifically designed to accommodate a flexible workforce. The company is represented by Newmark.

“It’s a pleasure to welcome Endotronix to Naperville,” said Steve Chirico, Mayor of Naperville. “As a fiscally-sound, business-friendly community that provides an unparalleled quality of life to its residents, we are a premier destination for growing companies like Endotronix. We look forward to being the home of their expanded commercial manufacturing and operations.”

The safety and efficacy of the company’s novel Cordella PA Sensor is currently being studied in a global investigational device exemption (IDE) clinical trial called PROACTIVE-HF that is on track to complete enrollment in the coming months. In addition, the company recently announced positive clinical data for the Cordella Sensor from the European SIRONA 2 clinical trial that was presented at the European Society of Cardiology’s Heart Failure Association (HFA) in May.

About Endotronix

Endotronix, Inc., a medical technology company, delivers an integrated platform that provides comprehensive, reimbursable health management innovations for patients suffering from advanced heart failure. Their solution, the Cordella™ Heart Failure System, includes a cloud-based disease management data system and at home hemodynamic management with a breakthrough implantable wireless pulmonary artery pressure sensor for early detection of worsening heart failure. Learn more at www.endotronix.com.

The Cordella System, without the sensor, is available for commercial use in the U.S. and E.U. and is currently in cardiology centers across the U.S. The Cordella PA Sensor is currently under clinical investigation and is not currently available for commercial use in any geography.

ComEd Unveils Plan to Support Beneficial Electrification in Northern Illinois, Including Increased Adoption of Electric Vehicles

EV

Proposed plan would provide $100 million per year in incentives, education and infrastructure support to remove barriers to electrification and deliver significant environmental and air quality improvements for communities 

CHICAGO (July 6, 2022) —ComEd announced that it has submitted its plan to support the adoption of beneficial electrification (BE) technologies, including customer adoption of electric vehicles (EVs) to the Illinois Commerce Commission (ICC), which regulates the state’s public utilities. ComEd is proposing to commit $100 million annually over the next three years to promote beneficial electrification, with programs designed to reduce upfront costs of EVs and charging equipment; enable broad, equitable deployment of charging infrastructure and other electrification technologies; educate customers; and prioritize investments equitably for communities in need. 

This plan would significantly lower carbon emissions and provide invaluable health and human welfare benefits including air quality improvements derived from a reduction of harmful pollutants from vehicle tailpipes. The plan marks the latest milestone in the implementation of the Climate and Equitable Jobs Act (CEJA). ComEd’s plan advances the objectives of CEJA, including the law’s goal of having 1 million EVs on the road in Illinois by 2030 and reducing greenhouse gas emissions and improving air quality for communities across the state. 

Through a mix of incentives, new rate design options, and educational and technical support, ComEd’s plan would help promote the transition to clean transportation and other clean technologies. The proposed investments would prioritize low-income customers and customers residing in environmental justice Restore, Reinvest, Renew (R3) communities and, as defined by the State of Illinois. 

“ComEd is committed to supporting a clean energy future that promotes cleaner air and safer communities, and that helps all of our communities achieve the goals set forward by the state’s new clean energy law,” said Gil C. Quiniones, CEO of ComEd. “The threat of climate change requires us to take swift action to reduce emissions by moving faster to adopt cleaner technologies. Designed with input from a wide range of local stakeholders and experts, our plan will reduce barriers for customers and support broad adoption of electrification across homes, schools, and communities in our region – keeping the state at the forefront for clean energy while creating the infrastructure needed to eliminate harmful emissions across all our communities.” 

ComEd made the announcement during a ribbon-cutting ceremony at a recently installed Multi-Unit Dwelling (MUD) EV charging station at 43rd Street and Calumet Avenue in Chicago’s Bronzeville neighborhood. This installation is the first of five planned MUD charging stations that will serve residential properties with three or more units and enable research funded in part by a U.S. Department of Energy grant. EV charging infrastructure, and especially infrastructure designed to provide accessibility to all communities, is vital for the broad adoption of EVs. The new BE Plan, combined with state and federal programs, will further expand deployment of EV infrastructure across northern Illinois. 

“For too long, the health of our communities has been negatively impacted by harmful air pollution, but CEJA is giving us an opportunity to reverse that trend and accelerate the transition to EVs,” said Billy Davis, General Manager of Jitney EV and a member of the Bronzeville Community of the Future Advisory Council. “The Beneficial Electrification plan ComEd is proposing will give a much-needed boost to our efforts in Bronzeville and across the region to electrify transportation, eliminate charging deserts, improve air quality, and create economic opportunities for new businesses.” 

In support of the state’s goals, the plan will contribute to long-term air quality improvements by enabling EV adoption to lower carbon and air pollutant emissions. ComEd estimates that vehicle and other incentives and rebates as outlined in the plan would help remove 900,000 metric tons of carbon emissions, the equivalent of the amount of carbon sequestered by approximately 1 million acres of U.S. forests in one year, an area approximately the size of Glacier National Park. What’s more, the plan would avoid an estimated 4,000 metric tons of local pollutants emitted from vehicle tailpipes, providing health and human welfare benefits, especially for disadvantaged communities where vehicle emissions have the greatest health impacts. 

“CACC encourages the use of clean fuel vehicles, clean fuels, and advanced vehicle technologies to promote an improved environment, energy efficiencies, domestic and renewable fuels, and a reduction in the use of imported petroleum,” said John Walton, Chair of the Chicago Area Clean Cities (CACC) coalition. “Electric vehicles have a role in furthering our mission to improve air quality and reduce lung disease, and ComEd’s beneficial electrification plan will help expand access to infrastructure and encourage more robust EV participation for our region.” 

“While Illinois has dramatically cut air pollution from fossil fuel power plants, vehicles are now the number one cause of carbon pollution in Illinois” said Brian Urbaszewski, Director of Environmental Health Programs at Respiratory Health Association. “With a focus on getting more zero-emission electric vehicles in communities, ComEd’s Beneficial Electrification plan is a serious roadmap for improving air quality precisely where the combination of high lung disease rates and unhealthy air pollution levels present the greatest threat to area residents.” 

Earlier this year, ComEd participated in a series of workshops to engage regional partners, including 10 meetings hosted by the ICC, to formalize input from those representing communities, health advocacy, industry, local business, school districts and other customer groups and interests across the service region. ComEd embraced the feedback it heard and proposed a plan to address the priorities of the communities it serves. 

The key components of the BE Plan include:

Residential Program 

The BE Plan includes $15 million annually in incentives that will reduce upfront costs related to purchase and installation of EVs, in-home charging stations, and non-transportation electrification equipment (such as building heating and cooling, lawn equipment, electric stoves, etc.). Larger rebates will be available for low-income customers and those located in environmental justice and/or equity investment eligible communities. To ensure those with the greatest needs have access to resources, ComEd will target 50 percent of its residential program funds for customers in equity investment eligible communities. 

C&I and Public Sector Program

To reduce the cost barriers associated with purchasing fleet vehicles and installing charging stations, the plan proposes $63 million annually to support new rebates for fleet electrification, with the majority of funding going toward vehicle rebates for public transit, commercial and school fleets. Funding will also support charging installation costs for public sector customers and public charging providers in environmental justice or R3 communities. This is intended to provide additional support to accelerate the benefits of clean transportation to environmental justice and equity investment eligible communities. Across the C&I and Public Sector Program, ComEd will target more than 40 percent of funding for customers within or primarily serving equity investment eligible communities. 

“ComEd’s Beneficial Electrification Plan proposes strategies to accelerate electrification of transportation and buildings that are consistent with our Climate Action Plan for the Chicago Region,” said City of Geneva Mayor Kevin Burns, Chairman of the Metropolitan Mayors Caucus’ Environment Committee, Energy Subcommittee, and EV Readiness Advisory Committee. “The plan offers resources to help local governments, businesses and residents alike adopt new technologies that will reduce carbon emissions, reduce air pollution, and promote economic growth, particularly in communities that have faced barriers to electrification.” 

“Innovative manufacturers not only use emerging new technology like electric vehicles and charging infrastructure, we create it and produce it,” said Mark Denzler, President & CEO of the Illinois Manufacturer’s Association. “Since 1990, manufacturing has reduced emissions more than any other sector in the United States. The manufacturing sector is developing new technologies that make energy more affordable, reliable, and cleaner every year. This new program will incent our state’s leading economic engine to further invest in electric-powered transportation and support Illinois jobs.” 

New C&I EV Charging Class 

In addition to incentives, ComEd is proposing a dedicated EV charging delivery customer class for (commercial and industrial (C&I) customers. The new rate class would significantly reduce upfront infrastructure or “make-ready” costs and would provide members an alternative to the default demand-based rate structures, which, at low utilization rates, can make the cost of charging high for customers. These efforts reflect recommendations from stakeholders and are intended to reduce barriers to the deployment of charging infrastructure in ComEd’s service territory. ComEd expects the benefits of this new customer class to multiply the impact of federal funding that the Illinois Department of Transportation will employ to support the development of charging stations across the highway system. 

“We are pleased to partner with ComEd to help advance the move toward electrification and drive the expansion of green jobs in the region,” said Brian Robb, Government Relations Director at Lion Electric. “In the last several years, Lion has been working with the elected officials, advocacy groups, environmental justice groups and many organizations such as ComEd to demonstrate how electrification can deliver economic growth, benefit a community’s health and well-being, and help build a solid charging infrastructure network in the State of Illinois.” 

“Staying at the forefront of the emergence of electric-powered transportation options is important to the customers retailers serve and, therefore, important to us,” said Rob Karr, President, Illinois Retail Merchants Association. “This proposal by ComEd includes a provision that will make it more convenient and cost affordable for Illinois retailers to install beneficial electrification infrastructure such as charging stations.” 

Customer Education and Pilot Programs 

A $9 million community education program will empower customers to make the transition to electrification. This program will help residential and business customers understand the timeline and impact of electrifying personal vehicles and fleets, as well as how utility programs and rates can benefit them. ComEd is also proposing $5 million annually for pilots to study the benefits of various electrification strategies for customers and the grid. 

Non-Transportation Opportunities 

In addition to EV benefits, the BE Plan offers a broad opportunity to reduce carbon and other emissions across sectors. While most of the BE Plan focuses on clean transportation, ComEd is also proposing a set of non-transportation rebates to work in tandem with energy efficiency offerings to spur adoption of electric technologies in the residential, commercial and industrial sectors. 

Rate Impact 

ComEd is proposing a cost recovery plan that aligns benefits with costs, avoids large rate impacts, and that minimizes impact on low-income customers. Pending approval, the average residential bill won’t see an increase until 2025, with an average impact of 11 cents a month, and up to 21 cents a month by 2027. For C&I bills, customers would see a slow increase of 42 cents per Megawatt hour (MWh) in 2025, and up to 83 cents per MWh in 2027, year three of the program. 

“I appreciate ComEd’s Beneficial Electrification plan,” said Rockford Mayor Tom McNamara. “It puts $300M over three years towards educating consumers on the benefit of electric vehicles, making EV charging stations in residential homes more easily attainable regardless of income through incentives and rebates, and should spur the use of a cleaner energy for commercial companies. 

“The IEC Powered by Future Green is particularly excited with ComEd’S inclusion of a School Bus Vehicle-to-Grid (V2G) Pilot and a new rate class for electric school bus chargers that will alleviate the upfront cost burden of infrastructure upgrades,” said Tim Farquer, Administrative Lead for the Bus-2-Grid Initiative, a service of IEC Powered by Future Green, and Superintendent of Williamsfield Schools. “Add in ComEd’s proposed electric school bus/charger rebates, and the upfront cost hurdle of school bus electrification will become much easier to clear. We welcome the opportunity to explore a partnership with ComEd to implement these new programs alongside new solar installs that benefit our most vulnerable students & schools. These programs bring us one step closer to the day our kids no longer recognize the smell of harmful diesel emissions.” 

Business leaders gather to hear economic and business outlooks at the 12th Annual DuPage County Regional Business Outlook event

Regional Business Outlook

More than 400 of the region’s top business and civic leaders gathered Thursday, June 2, 2022, at the 12th Annual DuPage County Regional Business Outlook event held at the Drury Lane. Under the theme Better Together, the event shared actionable insights and valuable perspectives on the evolving business climate and how the community can work together for a better tomorrow. Scroll down to view a recording of the event.

Pictured above, left-right: Laurie Miller, Ice Miller LLP, Tim Crane, Jarrett Payton, Cara Esser, Natalie Brown, Mesirow, and Greg Bedalov, Choose DuPage

Cara Esser, CFA, Managing Director, Research and Portfolio Management, Retirement Advisory Services for Mesirow returned for the second year to deliver the Global Economic Outlook. Esser detailed current economic trends and the likelihood of a potential recession.

“The stock market isn’t the economy,” said Esser. “Estimates for U.S. GDP growth in 2022 remain strong. Americans are still spending, retail sales are rising, and restaurants are seeing more in-person diners than before the pandemic.” She continued, “Inflationary pressures are broadening out, but some formerly hot sectors are cooling off. Most U.S. consumers should be able to weather a modest downturn in the economy.”

Tim Crane, President of Wintrust echoed some of these perspectives in his Business Outlook, where he shared insights into how these economic trends and other factors are impacting the business community.

“We are still somewhat optimistic about the economy, but it’s going to be very choppy… things will remain turbulent for some time,” Crane said. He then outlined some of challenges the business community is facing now and, in the future, including cyber security and fraud prevention, the evolving use of office space and how it will impact real estate, and labor – particularly, young people.

Jarrett Payton, a television sports personality, philanthropist, and entrepreneur, concluded the event with a keynote address. Payton shared stories about some of the moments that have shaped his life and the importance of finding passion, having persistence, and being present.

The annual DuPage County Regional Business Outlook event, hosted by Choose DuPage, Ice Miller LLP, and Mesirow, brings together DuPage County’s business owners and executives, government and education leaders and other members of the local business community to gain key insights about the current regional and national economic landscape, as well as to discuss best practices and growing potential in today’s economy.

Watch a video of the presentations, below.


About Choose DuPage Economic Development Alliance

Choose DuPage is the regional economic development organization for DuPage County, Illinois. A public/private partnership, Choose DuPage is dedicated to advancing DuPage County as a premier global business location. Geographically desirable, with a highly skilled labor force, DuPage County offers a diverse economy, friendly business climate, and substantial transportation network. Choose DuPage leverages these benefits to retain and attract business, support local economic development efforts, and address policy issues critical to the needs of business.

www.choosedupage.com

About Ice Miller LLP

Ice Miller LLP is a full-service law firm dedicated to helping our clients stay ahead of a changing world. With over 350 legal professionals in seven offices, we advise clients on all aspects of complex legal issues impacting businesses each day. We serve emerging growth companies, FORTUNE 500 corporations, municipal entities and nonprofits.

www.icemiller.com

About Mesirow

Mesirow is an independent, employee-owned financial services firm founded in 1937. Headquartered in Chicago, with locations around the world, we serve clients through a personal, custom approach to reaching financial goals and acting as a force for social good. With capabilities spanning Global Investment Management, Capital Markets & Investment Banking, and Advisory Services, we invest in what matters: our clients, our communities, and our culture.

Mesirow was recently named one of the Best Places to Work in Chicago by Crain’s Chicago Business and one of the Top 100 RIAs for 2021 by Barron’s.

www.mesirow.com

Job Opening: Director of Membership

Choose DuPage, a 501(c)(6) organization seeks a qualified candidate to fill the role of Director of Membership. This position is responsible for designing and implementing the Choose DuPage membership growth and retention strategy that aligns with Choose DuPage’s strategic objectives.

The Director of Membership is responsible for leading the development, implementation and evaluation of membership growth strategies, as well as day-to-day management of Choose DuPage’s member engagement. They will also serve as the liaison for associated committees to build a strong membership culture within the organization; work closely with the President & CEO and Board of Directors to achieve the goal of Choose DuPage membership while delivering and ensuring the highest level of service to our members. This position reports to the President & CEO.

Responsibilities

  • Leads the association’s overall efforts to recruit, retain, and engage membership.
  • Collaborates with the CEO, all staff, and key members to:
    • Create a roadmap for sustainable membership growth;
    • Establish short- and long-range plans and goals to achieve organization membership objectives;
    • Outline a data-driven member engagement, retention, and recruitment strategy and implementation plan.
    • Develop strategies and programs to stimulate member engagement as a means of membership renewal.
  • Identify opportunities and collaborate with colleagues to enhance member benefits and services offered by Choose DuPage.
  • Develop strategies to measure and strengthen member engagement.
  • Work with both staff and members to develop and manage processes for feedback on Choose DuPage membership, programs, and services.
  • Oversite of all membership data, tracking and reporting, including but not limited to:
    • Accurate membership records
    • Membership trend analysis
    • Recruitment and retention reports
    • Current, new and prospective member information
    • Member experience throughout join and renewal process
  • Initiate and manage strategic partnerships with other auxiliary-related associations and groups to help recruitment and retention of membership; including, but not limited to, attendance at these types of conferences/events to represent the association.
  • Works with CEO to set annual membership goals. Provides monthly insight into membership revenue and tracking to annual goals.
  • Serves as staff liaison to the Membership and other Committees; assist the committee chairs in the planning of meetings, development of the agenda, and in the execution of all committee activities.
  • Functions as the staff liaison to the various leadership teams.

Qualifications

The items below are representative of the knowledge, skills, abilities, and experience required or preferred. This position requires the ability to effectively establish and maintain cooperative working relationships within a diverse multicultural environment.

Knowledge and Skill Requirements

  • Bachelor’s Degree required.
  • Minimum of three years of experience in membership or constituent management position preferred.
  • Demonstrated experience in growing membership/customers and strengthening membership/customer retention.
  • An understanding of the higher education industry preferred.
  • Demonstrate problem solving skills with stakeholders, anticipate needs, determine priorities and meet deadlines.
  • Exceptional organizational skills with attention to detail.
  • Experience with database management.
  • Experience with Microsoft Office Suite of tools.
  • Strong interpersonal skills and commitment to high level of customer service.
  • Demonstrates excellent oral and written communication skills in order to interact effectively with members and customers outside the organization.
  • Ability to prioritize and follow through effectively.
  • Ability to travel to represent Choose DuPage at professional conferences, leadership meetings, and in the normal course of membership development activities.

*Remote employment may be considered.

*Relocation expenses to DuPage County will be considered for the right candidate.

*Candidates will not be considered for an interview without a cover letter.

*Benefits include health insurance, dental insurance, retirement plan and paid time off.

Please note: This job description is not designated to cover or contain a comprehensive listing of activities, duties or responsibilities that are required of the employee for this job. Duties, responsibilities, and activities may change at any time with or without notice.

To apply, send resume and cover letter, including salary requirements, to tobrien@choosedupage.com.


About Choose DuPage

Choose DuPage is an Economic Development Corporation in partnership with business, government and non-profits dedicated to growing the economy of DuPage County Illinois through programs and services that result in business attraction, retention, and expansion. Website: www.choosedupage.com. 

Choose DuPage serves DuPage County, a county consisting of thirty-nine (39) municipalities with more than 900,000 residents. DuPage County consistently ranks in the top counties in the country.

This DuPage Business is Making a More Sustainable World, One Drop at a Time

When we think of sustainability, we sometimes imagine a tug-of-war between economic and environmental interests—a zero-sum game, with profits and businesses on one side and ecosystems and communities on the other.

That’s just the way it is, right?

Fortunately, that’s not the case.

In fact, many businesses and communities across the globe—and right here in DuPage—are finding that the opposite is true.

As events like World Environment Day (June 5th, 2022) remind us, there are billions of planets in our galaxy, but only one Earth. Earth can’t be replaced, and it’s in all of our best interests to be good stewards of this one-of-a-kind planet. Rather than a competition, sustainability can and must be a collaborative effort that includes ecosystems, businesses and communities.

To celebrate World Environment Day and collaborative sustainability, let’s head to DuPage County and take a closer look at one business that’s using smart science and advanced technology to create a positive future—one drop at a time.

Welcome to Water University

Water University Nalco Water

The center of the water universe just might be a one-of-a-kind ‘school’ in Naperville, Illinois.

This is Water University. Created by Nalco Water, an Ecolab company, in 2017, and located on the campus of the company’s Ecolab Industrial headquarters, the facility is a high-tech learning environment where Nalco Water customers and associates educate themselves on state-of-the-art technologies.

At this university, you don’t get degrees. However, as a business owner, engineer, technician, or official, you can learn best practices that help you minimize water usage, maximize the potential of the water you do use, lower your costs, and make your operations more efficient. This is the place where environmental stewardship meets smart business practices.

The moment you step into Water University, your education begins. As a ‘student,’ one of the first places you encounter is the Customer Experience Center. A futuristic installation that would feel right at home in Chicago’s Museum of Science and Industry, the Customer Experience Center teaches users about the role of water in business, and outlines the company’s key technologies and water innovations.

But that’s only the beginning. As you head deeper into Water University, the real, hands-on learning begins.

First, there’s the Training Facility. Here, you can run simulations of real-life challenges using interactive software, then experiment with various programs and technologies in the wet lab.

Then there’s an area dedicated to the Ecolab Global Intelligence Center, which provides a live link to a remote customer service team. Here, you can engage with more than 130 service professionals working 24/7 to identify and resolve issues with your water technology.

Of course, no university would be complete without a lecture hall. At Water University’s brand-new auditorium, which seats more than 100 guests, associates and customers can attend presentations, panel discussions and collaborative training sessions on water technology.

Beneath the Surface

Underlying the sleek technology and immersive experiences of Water University is a message and a mission.

The message? Smart business practices and sustainability are not at odds; in fact, they’re in sync.

Water University helps customers envision the potential of responsible water usage. It helps them visualize how they can shift their water management from a wasteful linear model—in which operations intake water, use it, then discharge it—to a circular model, in which businesses reduce, reuse and recycle their water.

Using immersive experiences, the facility helps key decision-makers not only learn but see, feel and understand how the right technology can help them practice more sustainable water management—and how that can be good for both the environment and their bottom line.

The mission of Water University is deeply rooted in the company’s history. Nalco Water is owned by Ecolab, a global leader in water, hygiene and infection-prevention solutions. Founded nearly a century ago, Ecolab began as a one-product, one-employee business. In the 1970s, as the environmental movement took off, the company emerged as a leader in the sustainability space. Today, they provide technologies, services and solutions that help customers around the world achieve both their business and sustainability goals. Their most recent effort has been to champion 2030 goals related to water, climate, food and health (check out this video to learn more.)

At the center of Ecolab’s mission is water. This year alone, the company’s technologies have helped save more than 43 billion gallons of it, the equivalent of the annual drinking needs of 4.4 billion people.

And that’s a very, very good thing. Right now, our world needs sustainable water solutions more than ever.

Water World

Water shapes our lives in ways we see and ways we don’t.

Some are obvious. There is the water we drink and bathe in, the water that cleans our dishes, washes our clothes, and fills our pools, lakes and rivers.

But much of the water that flows through our lives is invisible to the average person.

Take this blog, for instance. Water is a key ingredient in nearly all manufacturing processes; countless gallons of it were used to build the device on which you’re reading this. Countless more were used when shipping it to you, and there’s a good chance that at least some of the electricity powering your device consumes additional water, directly or indirectly.

Even the data itself, the raw information that composes the words you’re reading and the images you’re seeing, consumes water. All this info—and so much more—is stored in data centers. Data centers, the foundation of our increasingly digitized world, use immense volumes of water to prevent their servers from overheating. They offer a glimpse at one of the many roles of water in our future.

Water is essential for growing our food, manufacturing our goods, and keeping our businesses and communities running. In the U.S., 45 percent of freshwater withdrawals are used for thermoelectric power, 32 percent for irrigation (mostly agriculture), 12 percent for public supply, and five percent for self-supplied industrial operations.

But don’t be fooled: Just because water is everywhere doesn’t mean it is unlimited or even abundant.

In fact, less than one percent of the Earth’s water is available for human use. The rest consists of saltwater in oceans, freshwater frozen in polar ice caps, and water that is otherwise inaccessible to humans.

Despite how essential our water supply is to every aspect of our lives—and despite how limited we know this natural resource is—humans, historically, haven’t been good stewards of it.  

In addition to pollution, which has damaged ecosystems within and beyond our natural waterways, our insatiable thirst for water has brought us to an impasse; by 2030, demand for freshwater is expected to exceed supply by 56 percent. (Until recently, that number was 40 percent. However, in 2020, the World Resources Institute announced that the water crisis had been exacerbated from 40 to 56 percent.)

Meanwhile, less than 10 percent of freshwater in the U.S. is reused, and only three percent of wastewater across the globe is recycled. Our current approach is simply unsustainable. Populations are rising and demand for water is increasing; at the same time, the supply of water is the same as ever. We’re in a rocket ship, and we’re flying towards a ceiling.

What happens when we hit the ceiling? Already, we can see the consequences of our strain on the water supply. For most people, that means higher water prices and seasonal watering restrictions. For businesses, that means goods are more expensive to produce, leading to higher prices for consumers and stagnation across the economy.

For the environment, that means disruptions to numerous ecosystems. As water tables dip, concentrations of pollutants rise, disrupting food chains and sending shockwaves through animal populations and onto human communities. 

Ripple Effects

sustainability dupage

There’s a growing trend among environmental activists, businesses and communities to think differently about sustainability. And when you look at the urgency of the crisis and the success of Ecolab and Nalco Water’s business model, it’s easy to see why.

This trend hinges on an updated definition of sustainability, one that focuses on three pillars.

#1: Environmental Sustainability: This is all about good environmental stewardship—responsibly managing natural resources, respecting the natural world, and protecting ecosystems. When most people think of sustainability, they think only of this pillar. But this definition includes two more.

#2: Economic Sustainability: This refers to practices that support long-term economic health and enable businesses to succeed while doing good for people and the planet.

#3: Social Sustainability: This final pillar refers to practices that protect people and preserve our society. That includes ensuring that everyone has access to the basics: clean water, adequate food, quality education, healthcare and shelter, as well as human rights. It extends to the workforce, a community that practices social sustainability protects their workers from exploitation and discrimination.

As a society, we debate these three pillars all the time, often separating them, pitting them against one another, and arguing over which pillars are more important. However, by grouping them under one banner, the banner of sustainability, we can see that they are inseparable.

Not only do efforts to sustain the environment contribute to economic and social sustainability, and vice versa—you really can’t have one without the other. If we let the environment waste away, our quality of life will suffer, as will our businesses and our social fabric. If we ignore social justice, our workforce and consumers will be unhealthy, our economy will stagnate, and we will lack the social cohesion to mobilize for sustainability. Finally, if we ignore economic sustainability, we won’t have the resources to pursue our other goals. Each pillar is essential to the others.

Ecolab demonstrates how businesses and communities can pursue all three goals at once.

By improving their customers’ water management practices, they help these businesses reduce costs, protect the environment and improve their business’ public image. Meanwhile, as Ecolab has made the first two pillars core to their business model, the third is just as important to their business and culture. Recently, they have enriched their company’s diversity and inclusion practices, focusing on gender, racial and ethnic equity among their employees and serving as a role model for other businesses.

Ecolab inspires us. They show us how, rather than conflicting with one another, the three pillars of sustainability can together be the bedrock of successful businesses and strong communities.

We all share one Earth. We all share one future. And while each of us has our own perspectives, goals and abilities, creating a more sustainable world is one thing that can—and must—bring us all together.

Thank you for reading! For incentives, information and other resources for DuPage businesses practicing sustainability, start here.

 

Incentives & Resources for Sustainable Development

On April 28, 2022, Choose DuPage and the DuPage County Environmental Division hosted a Zoom & Learn as part of an ongoing, Sustainable DuPage program series. In the webinar, we learned about the incentives and resources available for energy efficiency, HVAC improvements, renewable energy, and other sustainable development projects. 

GUEST SPEAKERS

AnnaMaria Kowalik, Senior Vice President, Director of Business Development
The Illinois Energy Conservation Authority NFP

Lynette Ng, Outreach Manager, C&I Programs
Resource Innovations, ComEd

Dave Surina, Community Affairs Manager
Nicor Gas

Mike King, Director Energy Efficiency Program Operations
Nicor Gas

View Speaker Bios

View Webinar

Sustainable DuPage Program Series

In honor of Earth Month 2022 (April), Choose DuPage and the DuPage County Environmental Division have partnered to host a series of sustainability-focused events. Featuring fresh topics and guest speakers every Thursday in April, this series covers topics at the intersection of business, economic development, life, and sustainability, while focusing on the DuPage region. By bringing together local thought-leaders and influential members of the community, we hope to spark new connections and fresh thinking as we all work toward a brighter future—for our planet and for DuPage.

Sustainable DuPage

DuPage County to Host Inaugural Community Arts Festival

DuPage Community Arts Festival

DuPage County will host its inaugural DuPage Community Arts Festival to highlight the importance of arts in our community.

The event will take place from 10 a.m. to 11 p.m. on May 28 at the north grounds of DuPage County Fairgrounds, 2015 Manchester Road, Wheaton. There will be three stages providing musical acts, along with food trucks and a beer tent providing refreshments. Local community artists will be showcasing and selling their work throughout the festival.

Groups scheduled to perform during the DuPage Community Arts Festival include the headline act, Ides of March, and others including the Orbert Davis Quintet, Muriel Anderson, Ralph Covert and Ralph’s World, Son Monarcas, the DuPage Symphony Ensembles, the Chicago Jazz Academy, Vital Signs, the Road Show Inc. Show Choir, Elmhurst Symphony Chamber groups, and many more, including a visual performance by artist Lewis Achenbach.

DuPage County formed an Ad Hoc Fine Arts Committee to develop the festival as an opportunity to support local artists, many of whom have been devastated by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“This event will highlight the importance of the arts and the pivotal role they play in driving economic development. A thriving arts community means a thriving DuPage County,” said Lynn LaPlante, Chairwoman of the Ad Hoc Fine Arts Committee. “This brand-new initiative gives these talented artists a platform to promote the amazing work they’re doing. It’s a wonderful opportunity for us to come together and celebrate as a community after a very difficult two years.”

Presale tickets for the DuPage Community Arts Festival are currently available and cost $20 for adults, $10 for children ages 3 to 12, and free for children under the age of 3. A family pass will be available for $50. Tickets bought at the gate will cost $25 for adults, $12 for children ages 3 to 12, and free for children under the age of 3. A family pass bought at the gate will cost $60.

Funds raised through the festival will be used to support future arts-related efforts. To purchase tickets, or for more information, please visit the DuPage County Fair Association website at https://dupagecountyfair.org.