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BusINess » Community Service

Posts Tagged ‘Community Service’

Shannon Burhans

(Photograph by Tony V. Martin.)

(Photograph by Tony V. Martin.)

Like anyone who runs a small independent business and has young children, Shannon Burhans stays very busy. Paid vacations are hard to come by. When her young children aren’t in school, they’re probably with her—and need rides to sports or gymnastics practices.

That would be enough for most people, but not Burhans, who for the last seven years has run The eState, a jewelry, memorabilia and antiques shop in Portage, with her husband Dave. Throughout those years, the 38-year-old mother of two also volunteered for a dizzying array of positions in four organizations: the Portage Chamber of Commerce, the Portage Kiwanis club, Safe Sitter and the Portage Parks and Recreation Foundation.

“I really enjoy doing community service,” says Burhans, who’s originally from Schererville and went to Lake Central High School. Last year, she was named “Distinguished Club President” by Kiwanis International, which is dedicated to “changing the world, one child and one community at a time.” Burhans is the immediate past-president of the Portage club. She’s also served as the club’s secretary and vice-president, and is currently chair of its membership committee.

She also coordinates the club’s Dictionary Project, which she created while serving as vice president in 2006. Each year, the club fundraises to purchase dictionaries that are given to all third graders in Portage Township schools. “Most of us have the internet, so you wouldn’t think a dictionary would be such a big deal,” says Burhans, who lives in Portage. But children like having their own dictionary. “Every one of those kids is extremely grateful—they’re using it, they’re interested.”
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Mark Maassel

(Photograph by Robert Wray.)

(Photograph by Robert Wray.)

The last day of April, Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels traveled to Gary and delivered a clear message to a few hundred business leaders and officials gathered at the Genesis Convention Center: The people of Northwest Indiana, Daniels said, need to work harder to make the region an economic engine for the state.

It’s hard to imagine anyone working harder to reach that goal than Mark Maassel, who was of course in attendance at the luncheon. As the new president and CEO of the Northwest Indiana Forum, Maassel is uniquely positioned to help ensure the region emerges from the recession to become the economic engine that Daniels and Northwest Indiana’s 850,000 residents want to see power prosperity.

“This was a true recession—for the most part, it impacted everyone,” Maassel says. “But I think businesses here in Indiana have done better for a number of reasons.” The recession—from which most area business leaders now believe NWI is steadily recovering—would have impacted the region much more deeply if not for its basic strengths, Maassel says: a “superb” dedicated workforce bolstered by great educational institutions; close proximity to Chicago; excellent infrastructure; and business-friendly environment.

“The fact that Indiana has not raised taxes is very important,” says Maassel, who lives in Valparaiso, the school board of which he began serving on last year. “The last thing you want to do during a recession is raise the cost of doing business.”
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David Bochnowski

David A. Bochnowski, the newest board member of BusINess magazine, didn’t originally plan to be a banker.

“I always joke that I came up in banking the hard way. I had a great deal of exposure to the bank, and I remember the days of posting ledgers by hand, back when digitalizing was a revolutionary concept,” says the chairman and CEO of Northwest Indiana Bancorp and Peoples Bank, an institution started by Bochnowski’s grandfather in East Chicago.

“But as much as I enjoyed the banking environment, my family encouraged me to explore the world beyond. I credit my parents for piquing my interest in other cultures and specialties.” Bochnowski explored his interest in foreign service by spending the summer of 1967 in Lesotho, Africa, with a faith-based group called Crossroads Africa.

“It was a rewarding experience,” he says. “I enrolled in Howard University for a master’s degree in African studies.”
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Joe Morrow

(Photograph by Jessica A. Woolf.)

(Photograph by Jessica A. Woolf.)

Joseph Morrow began considering a political career while in an eighth grade civics class in his hometown of Huntington, Indiana. The idea of being elected to the U.S. Congress continued to appeal to him as he served in the United States Air Force, earned his business degree at Indiana University and while attending the IU School of Law in the late 1950’s.

“My plans was to move to a small county seat, practice law and run for Congress,” the 79-year old Morrow recalls.

“Then I began realizing that that wasn’t the way to conduct a lifestyle. To give back to the community, you have to be successful in some other endeavor.”

And he has been successful in two professions—the law and banking. Following his law school graduation in 1958, Morrow moved to Northwest Indiana and became law clerk to a judge in the Northern District Court of Indiana. In late 1959, he established his own law practice in Hammond.

“We did general counsel work for NIPSCO and the South Shore Railroad, basically utility and regulatory law,” he says.
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James W. Dye

(Photograph by Natalie Battaglia.)

(Photograph by Natalie Battaglia.)

James W. Dye, president of JWD Management, Inc. and president of the James W. and Betty Dye Foundation, both in Munster, had building in his blood from the beginning.

“I started working young and had a good work ethic. I started working at odd jobs at Standard Lumber and elsewhere. I worked as a block layer, soda jerk, had a paper route, delivered vegetables, raised chickens,” says Dye.

After Dye graduated from Hammond High School in 1949, he went on to attend Indiana University and is still very involved in the campus today. “I was active down there, in charge of student spirit and I was a basketball manager. I was a Sigma Chi while I was in school and graduated as a business major and studied real estate,” he says. Dye has since served on the board of trustees for Indiana University from 1984 to 1990 and last October received an Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters from the institution.

After college, Dye served with the Army Corps of Engineers and further honed his real estate skills, he says. “I was a real estate utilization and inspection officer and because the war was over I was very busy with releasing properties back to Korea and Japan,” says Dye.
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David Bochnowski

As chairman and CEO of Northwest Indiana Bancorp and Peoples Bank, David A. Bochnowski carries on the lessons taught by his grandfather and father and their legacy of customer service and giving back.

“Our philosophy is to treat customers with respect as individuals, build rapport with our customers and reinvest in the Northwest Indiana communities where our customers and employees work and live,” says Bochnowski, a third-generation banker, husband, father of four and a Munster resident.

“Fair and honest dealings are critical to the success of any enterprise, but especially critical in banking,” he says. “These are not just words. They’re a way of life.”

And being a banker means being in public service, Bochnowski says. His involvement in local, state and national issues is extensive.

A community activist, Bochnowski serves as treasurer for the Munster Community Hospital and on the board of the Community Health Care System. He is former chairman and current board member of the Legacy Foundation of Lake County; a director of the Northwest Indiana Quality of Life Council; a trustee of the Purdue University Technology Center and a trustee of Calumet College of St. Joseph.
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Rick Soria

(Photograph by Jon Luke.)

(Photograph by Jon Luke.)

Rick Soria of Valparaiso developed and initiated the acclaimed Mortuary Science Program at Ivy Tech’s East Chicago campus in 2002. Soria earned the college full accreditation for the program, which is one of 59 throughout the country.

Soria currently oversees the program, among others, as Dean of the School of Public and Social Service at Ivy Tech Community College in the Northwest Region.

“Through a collaborative effort from me coming on as program chair, along with the college administration and staff, we were able to bring the program to what it is now,” Soria says.
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Douglas Lewis

(Photograph by Natalie Battaglia.)

(Photograph by Natalie Battaglia.)

In 1998, Highland native Douglas Lewis had a life decision to make. A mechanical engineer with a newly-minted MBA from DePaul University, Lewis could have taken a position with a major engineering firm in Chicago and traveled around the world on assignments. He and his wife, Jill, were also expecting their first child.

“I sat down and asked myself ‘What am I passionate about?’,” Lewis recalls.

The answer: “I really enjoy helping people. And I understand how money and the markets work,” he says.

The solution: turn his talents to helping people manage their money for all the life choices they will make as a financial advisor with an investment firm.

After several years with another firm, Lewis came to Edward Jones as a financial advisor and an accredited asset management specialist.

“Now I have an office in my hometown,” Lewis says. “It’s easier to be involved with my community and my kids. I commute a half mile one way to work.”

As he once helped fellow high school students understand algebra, Lewis now helps investors understand how to make their money work for them.
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Calvin Bellamy

CONSISTENT SERVICE Whether at Bank Calumet or the law firm of Krieg DeVault LLP, Calvin Bellamy has made community service a hallmark of his work. (Photograph by Natalie Battaglia)

CONSISTENT SERVICE Whether at Bank Calumet or the law firm of Krieg DeVault LLP, Calvin Bellamy has made community service a hallmark of his work. (Photograph by Natalie Battaglia)

Work and community service go hand in hand for longtime banker and now practicing attorney Calvin Bellamy. Throughout his career as president and chief executive officer of the former Bank Calumet and now as an attorney with Krieg DeVault LLC, Bellamy served numerous Northwest Indiana organizations, from chairing boards to handing out awards to school children.

“What I’ve enjoyed the most is the ability to relate to the community,” said Bellamy, one of five Northwest Indiana business people named in February to The Times’ Northwest Indiana Business and Industry Hall of Fame.

Bellamy “has set an example of how someone gets involved and helps their community,” said William Nangle, The Times’ executive editor.

“It’s a great honor, especially being with the entrepreneurs that are the other inductees this year,” Bellamy said.

For Bellamy, community involvement has meant the opportunity to “in some way be sensitive to the needs that others were not addressing,” whether partnering with schools, working for affordable housing or helping to develop small businesses.

Bellamy said he looks back with pride on the opportunity while at Bank Calumet to “work with 450 people and share with them the profits of the company.”
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Don Burrell

 DEVELOPING GOOD WILL Don Burrell uses his business to support numerous charitable causes, including the Burrell Cancer Institute at St. Anthony Medical Center and the St. Jude women’s and children’s shelter. (Photograph courtesy Burrell Coulour Inc.)

DEVELOPING GOOD WILL Don Burrell uses his business to support numerous charitable causes, including the Burrell Cancer Institute at St. Anthony Medical Center and the St. Jude women’s and children’s shelter. (Photograph courtesy Burrell Coulour Inc.)

Don Burrell never forgot a promise he made years ago. The founder and president of Burrell Colour Inc. in Crown Point, Burrell started the business using $700 in proceeds from the sale of his car. Burrell promised St. Jude that if he could make it in business, he would pay it back through charitable acts, said Cindy Agans, Burrell Colour vice president and chief operating officer.

“He continues to do that,” Agans said.

Burrell’s commitment to the community helped garner membership this year in The Times’ Northwest Indiana Business and Industry Hall of Fame.

“It’s a great honor for him to be recognized,” Agans said.

Burrell founded his namesake business in 1960 and built it into a leading independent professional photo and imaging lab.

He sold the business in 2003 but repurchased it four years later, saying he missed an industry that had been part of his life for decades.

His community commitments include the founding and support of the Burrell Cancer Institute at St. Anthony Medical Center and the St. Jude House women’s and children’s shelter, both in Crown Point.
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