Tag Archives: Jim Shalek

Elburn networking group shoots off with a BANG

by Lynn Meredith
ELBURN—BANG stands for Business Alliance Networking Group, an off-shoot of an Elburn Chamber of Commerce group, that comes together twice a month to try to help grow each other’s businesses. The group under this name was officially formed in April, but it has a 10-year history among business people in the local area.

“The purpose of the group is to foster business growth, education of the members through networking and being able to refer our contacts to others in the group,” founding member Jim Shalek said.

Through meeting other business people face-to-face, new relationships are formed that can lead to more business for the parties involved.

“Instead of you being out there by yourself, you have these friends who will help promote your business,” Bo Smith of the Elburn Herald said.

The group began as the Elburn LEADS group that required that all members belong to the Elburn Chamber of Commerce. It grew so big that it split into two groups. But with the economic downturn in 2008, the second group folded, and the first group lost members. They decided to drop the requirement that members belong to the chamber, and the group itself became a chamber member.

BANG meets the second and fourth Friday, 8 to 9 a.m. at Papa G’s in Elburn.

“At each meeting, one member is given the opportunity to tell the others a bit of information that may be useful,” Shalek said. “We share ideas and concepts and have a time in the meeting for everyone to provide a lead, if they have one, to someone else in the group.”

With about 12-15 members, the group encourages business owners or people who would like to help promote the business they work for to attend. The network is made up of small business owners, real estate professionals, attorneys, financial services professionals and more.

“I would suggest to people that if they are interested that they come to a meeting. They can come two times without joining,” Shalek said. “It’s an inexpensive way to engage in business networking.”

The cost for membership is $30 for six months. Call BANG President Dave Dudzinski at (630) 224-6632, to make arrangements to attend.

Letter: Elburn chamber, leads group sets donation record

For the past several years, the Elburn Chamber of Commerce has worked in partnership with its leads group to donate as much money as possible to the Elburn and Countryside Food Pantry. This money has then been disbursed throughout the year and used during the times when it is most needed by the pantry.

A donation has been collected by the leads group and then matched by the Elburn Chamber. This year, a total of $1,370 was donated, which is the most that the chamber has ever contributed.

The leads group is just one of a number of benefits of chamber membership. Membership in the leads group is open to anyone who is a member in good standing of the Elburn Chamber of Commerce. The group is business category exclusive. New members are always welcome. For more information about the chamber and its leads group, contact the chamber office at (630) 365-2295.

To learn more about food distribution hours and how to donate to the Elburn and Countryside Food Pantry, call (630) 365-6655.

Jim Shalek
Elburn Chamber Leads Group