Special Thanks to our 2017 Annual Event Sponsors!

Special thanks to our Economic Outlook Luncheon Sponsors! 

Past Events

Economic Outlook Luncheon

On March 24, 2017, DCEDC held its annual Economic Outlook Luncheon at Faranda’s Banquet Center. Senior Economist Bill Strauss of the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago delivered an insightful presentation regarding the outlook of our economy. He presented data suggesting that the U.S. economy is expected to expand at a pace around trend through 2009. Additionally, Strauss stated that manufacturing output is expected to increase at a rate below its trend during 2017 and 2018 and the housing marketing is expected to continue improving through 2018. We thank the Daily Chronicle for their event coverage.

We were thrilled to have Bill Strauss back for another successful Economic Outlook Luncheon! We would like to thank Bill, the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, Faranda’s Banquet Center, our Economic Outlook Sponsors, and last but certainly not least, our Annual Event Sponsors!


Business Roundtable – INTERSECT Illinois

DCEDC held its first Business Roundtable this year on Thursday, February 9th, 2017 from 11:00 AM – 1:00 PM at Fatty’s Pub and Grille with a presentation from James Schultz about the recently formed economic development organization, Intersect Illinois. Prior to becoming the CEO of Intersect Illinois, Illinois Gov. Rauner named Schultz Director of the Illinois Department of Commerce in February 2015. Schultz is a fifth generation Illinoisan, agribusiness entrepreneur, and private equity executive. Learn more about Schultz by reading his full bio.

Within his presentation, Jim described the role and impact of INTERSECT Illinois on increasing Illinois’ competitiveness, focusing on business development, and job creation. Intersect Illinois works with the Illinois Dept. of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) and other economic development organizations throughout the state to promote Illinois’ strengths and resources. Audience members had an opportunity to engage in a question and answer session with Schultz as well as provide feedback about local economic development efforts and projects in DeKalb County.


DCEDC’s 2016 Annual Dinner and State of the County Event, November 2, 2016

DCEDC held its 2016 Annual Dinner and State of the County Event on November 2, 2016 at Faranda’s Banquet Center in DeKalb, IL. Paul Borek, DCEDC Executive Director, gave the State of the County address that highlighted the numerous economic development projects and initiatives within DeKalb County this past year. A copy of this year’s State of the County presentation is available for DCEDC members using their membership login.

This year’s keynote speaker was Jim James, Chairman and CEO of IDEAL INDUSTRIES, INC. James has served as IDEAL INDUSTRIES, INC. President and CEO since 2008 and Chairman and CEO since 2014. With more than a quarter-century of experience across several industries, including metal fabrication, aerospace, chemical adhesives and building components, Jim James leads IDEAL INDUSTRIES, INC. with a wealth of knowledge and visionary leadership. A graduate of Georgia State University (MBA) and the University of Wisconsin (BS in Industrial Technology), Jim also spent 16 years with Illinois Tool Works before joining IDEAL in 2008.

In his presentation, James discussed the importance of a company’s willingness and ability to change and grow. He noted that this often includes taking calculated risks to build on the company’s foundation as well as its operational processes and abilities.

To view our Annual Dinner Sponsors and Exhibitors, along with our participants you may click on this link- annual-dinner-slideshow-final-10-31-16


 Thanks to this years’Annual Dinner Sponsors, Exhibitors, Volunteers & Participants

Airport Business Roundtable: The Economic Role of the DeKalb Taylor Municipal Airport

Have you ever thought about how much of an impact the DeKalb Taylor Municipal Airport has on our economy? Jack Penning, Executive Director of Strategy & Development for Sixel Consulting Group, provided insights at our September 8th Business Roundtable Luncheon held on location at the airport. The DeKalb Taylor creates a total annual economic impact of $10.7 Million each year! This includes the direct impact of those using and operating the airport, the indirect impact of visitor and corporate spending, and the induced impact of downstream spending and payroll.
Having an airport like DeKalb Taylor is important in attracting business development. Companies using business aircraft outperformed those that do not by .5% to 2%, according to Penning. 3M, Target, Johnson Controls, Menards, Walmart and Monsanto all use the DeKalb Taylor. With a 7,026 foot runway, DeKalb Taylor Airport in among the most well-equipped in Northern Illinois to serve corporate jets. We express our appreciation to our guests, our keynote speaker Jack Penning, the City of DeKalb, Illinois,DeKalb Taylor Municipal Airport, Fatty’s Catering Group, and all of our Annual Event Sponsors (listed below) for contributing to the success of the DeKalb Taylor Airport Business Roundtable!




 DCEDC’s Technology Focus Luncheon

On Thursday, June 30th, DCEDC hosted the 2016 Technology Focus Luncheon. The focus of this event was to provide information on the emerging business technology needs and applications. With a combination of over one-hundred attendees from the community and DCEDC members, three presenters, Brett Coryell*, Tim Clark**, and Cohen Barnes***, shared insight on technology in the workplace. Coryell gave an overview of Regional Broadband and Fiber incentives, Clark spoke about the integration of IT, engineering, production, operation feedback and its importance, and Barnes provided information about Emerging Small Business IT Needs or Domestic IT Outsourcing Opportunities. Each demonstrated exceptional knowledge on the subject and delivery skills resulting in a well-received presentation. DCEDC President, Greg Millburg, proceeded to administer a question and answer session. The three presenters sat on the panel. Attendees inquired with detailed questions and the panelists engaged with thoughtful answers. The luncheon was hosted at 1312 W Lincoln Highway at Fatty’s Pub and Grille where DCEDC’s newest contributing member, Fatty’s Catering Group, provided delicious food, a lovely atmosphere, and spectacular service.

*Brett Coryell: Vice President for Information Technology and Chief Information Officer, Northern Illinois University

**Tim Clark: Corporate IT Director, IDEAL INDUSTRIES, INC.

***Cohen Barnes: Owner, Operator, SundogIT


“DeKalb County Thriving!” Summit

Tuesday, May 24th
8:00-9:30 AM
DeKalb County Farm Bureau
1350 West Prairie Drive
Sycamore, IL 60178
As a continuation of a joint economic development visioning process, NIU, DeKalb County Government, DCEDC, DeKalb County Community Foundation, and DeKalb County Farm Bureau will be holding a “DeKalb County Thriving!” Summit on Tuesday, May 24th from 8:00 – 9:30 AM at the DeKalb County Farm Bureau in Sycamore. The goal is to discuss suggested priorities for development and a draft economic development vision for the county with members of the public.

Please see the full Press Release from NIU Today.

2016 Economic Outlook Luncheon

Speaker: William A. Strauss, CBE,  Senior Economist and Economic Advisor

Strauss Bio

More photos from this event

DCEDC welcomed back Strauss as keynote speaker for their annual economic outlook luncheon. The event was held on Thursday, March 17th at Faranda’s Banquet & Conference Center at 302 Grove Street, DeKalb, IL. Within his presentation, Strauss stated that the US economy is expected to expand at a near trend pace through 2018 and employment is expected to moderately grow with the unemployment rate holding at the natural rate. Manufacturing output is expected to grow at a rate below trend in 2016 and into 2017.

More detailed information can be found within his slide presentation from the event, published in the Members Only area.

Strauss is particularly qualified to evaluate trends and forecast economic performance because he organizes the Fed’s Economic Outlook Symposium and Automotive Outlook Symposium each year while analyzing the performance of both the Midwest economy and the manufacturing sector. In addition, he conducts industrial and manufacturing roundtables throughout the year.

2016 EOL Sponsor Slideshow FINAL 3-14-16

DeKalb County Economic Summit

Speaker: Brian Richard, NIU Center for Governmental Studies

DCEDC collaborated with the DeKalb County Board, DeKalb County Community Foundation, DeKalb County Farm Bureau, and NIU Center for Governmental Studies in preparing a vision for countywide economic development. The summit featured a presentation from Brian Richard from the NIU Center for Governmental Studies and provided participants an opportunity to discuss and share feedback about economic development within DeKalb County. Two identical sessions were held on Tuesday, November 17th at the DeKalb County Farm Bureau.

2015 Annual Dinner/State of the County

Keynote Speaker: Gov. Bruce Rauner

Governor Rauner CC Pic Resized IL Seal

DCEDC held its 2015 Annual Dinner/State of the County presentation on Thursday, October 29, 2015 in the Duke Ellington Ballroom located in the NIU Holmes Student Center. Paul Borek, DCEDC Executive Director, gave the 2015 State of the County presentation, highlighting the economic development around DeKalb County.

A special presentation was given by keynote speaker Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner who complimented the achievements of DeKalb County and the value of its workforce.

For more information, click here.

DCEDC-thank you-V2

Business Roundtable and Panel Discussion – Arts, Entertainment, & Tourism

Guest Speakers: Debbie Armstrong, Executive Director, DCCVB; Brad Hoey, Director of Campus Communications, NIU; Alex Nerad, Executive Director, Egyptian Theatre; Heather Priest, Assistant Director of Marketing/Convocation Center, NIU

Northern Illinois University Convocation Center – Wednesday, September 30, 2015

A panel of DeKalb County arts, entertainment, and tourism industry leaders facilitated discussions on the economic impact of DeKalb County culture. Panelists’ presentations conveyed the importance of DeKalb County entertainment centers such as the Egyptian Theatre, Huskie Stadium, and the NIU Convocation Center on local job creation, tax revenues, and hotel/amenities spending. Discussion also included current initiatives underway including hosting the upcoming IHSA Football Championships and expansion of events/programming at the Egyptian Theatre and Convocation Center.

2015 Industrial Focus Reception

Guest Speakers: JD Heinrich, Forge Brewhouse; Rick Mamoser, Prairie State Winery; Andrew Nordman, Cademon Brewing Co. and Jamie Walter, Whiskey Acres Distilling Co.

Faranda’s Banquet Center 302 Grove Street, DeKalb, IL 60115. Click here to see photos and more from the event.

Abundant Resources available to DeKalb County Businesses from two tremendous assets, Northern Illinois University & Kishwaukee College

Guest Speakers: Jennifer Groce, NIU Director of Community Affairs & Dr. Tom Choice, Kishwaukee College President

DeKalb County Farm Bureau 1350 West Prairie Drive, Sycamore, IL 60178.  Click Here to read more about resources available to DeKalb County businesses!

Economic Outlook Luncheon 2015

Guest Speaker: William Strauss – Senior Economic Advisor, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago

DeKalb County Farm Bureau 1350 West Prairie Drive, Sycamore, IL 60178.  Click Here to see photos from the Economic Outlook Luncheon 2015.

Annual Dinner/State of the County

Keynote Speaker, Jim Dugan, Executive Support Manager for the office of the Chairman and CEO of Caterpillar Inc.

Faranda’s Banquet Center 302 Grove Street, DeKalb, IL 60115.  Click Here to read more about our Annual Dinner/State of the County.

 Healthcare Reform Business Roundtable with Panel ft. KishHealth System

Guest Speaker, Kevin Poorten, KishHealth System President & CEO and Joe Dant, KishHealth System Vice President of Business Development

DeKalb County Farm Bureau 1350 West Prairie Drive, Sycamore, IL 60178.  Click Here to read more about our Healthcare Reform Business Roundtable.

Say “YES” to Manufacturing!  Tour IDEAL INDUSTRIES, INC.

Guest Speaker, Jim James, CEO/Chairman of the Board, IDEAL INDUSTRIES, INC.

DeKalb County Farm Bureau & IDEAL INDUSTRIES, INC. Click Here to see photos from Say “YES” to Manufacturing! Tour IDEAL INDUSTRIES, INC.

Career Development and Business Growth: Enrich your Talent Pool with NIU Interns

Guest Speaker: Dr. Douglas Baker- Northern Illinois University with Analytical Interns; Timi Adeboje, Nestle USA and Tyler Hayes, FONA International

DeKalb County Farm Bureau 1350 West Prairie Drive, Sycamore, IL 60178 Click Here to see photos from Career Development and Business Growth: Enrich your Talent Pool with NIU Interns


For a list of our partner organization events please Click Here.