Chamber enters 2013 with new board

Staff Writer

Greg Guttman is the new board president of the Hyde Park Chamber of Commerce. Guttman, director of marketing at MAC Property Management, replaced Hyde Park Herald Vice President and General Manager Susan Walker. The chamber had a successful 2012 and plans to build on its strengths in 2013, said a chamber staff member.

Guttman, who has been at MAC for nine years, served as a member of the chamber for seven years before becoming board president.

“As director of marketing for MAC Property Management, I am responsible for recruiting Chicago’s apartment renters to move to Hyde Park,” Guttman said. “My involvement with the Chamber of Commerce has been a natural fit because a thriving business community is a critical component to MAC’s ability to present Hyde Park as the city’s best neighborhood to call home.”

Other board changes include four new members: Marylee Busssard, Chaturanga Holistic Fitness; Lawrence Damico, Hyde Park Produce; Paul Jones, Hyde Park Bank and Jonathan T. Swain, Kimbark Beverage Shoppe. Brad Jonas of Powell’s Bookstore and Marc Pribaz of Istria Café are no longer on the board.

Hyde Park Chamber of Commerce executive director Wallace Goode said the chamber is wrapping up its workplace violence seminars that were funded by a $75,000 grant the commerce received from the Illinois Violence Prevention Authority.

Wallace Goode, Hyde Park Chamber of Commerce executive director (left), and the 2013 Hyde Park Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors (left to right): Marylee Bussard, Chaturanga; Harry Parson, Velocity Marketing; Larry Damico, Hyde Park Produce; Patty Kidwell, Chant and Noodles Etc.; Susan Walker, Herald Newspapers Inc.; Joyce Feuer, Joyce’s Events and Party Planning; Kirsten Esterly, The Medici; Jim Hennessey, University of Chicago; Mike Davis, The Entrepreneur’s Source; Greg Guttman, MAC Properties; Jim Poueymirou, Wells Fargo; Paula Jones, Hyde Park Bank; Ken Sticken, Bank Financial; Greg Teague, Country Financial (in back); Denise Johnson, Museum of Science and Industry. (Not pictured: HPCC board members Jonathan Swain, Kimbark Beverage Shoppe and Jeannie Spurlock, Century 21 – Kennedy, Ryan, Monigal & Assoc.)
Spencer Bibbs

The workshops were designed to help owners identify, manage, and recover from violent situations in the workplace, Goode said.

“We were able to have four seminars that trained people on aspects of workplace violence such as intimate partner violence, gang violence, volatile employee violence and bullying and terrorism,” Goode said.

The chamber also created a violence prevention resource guide and mousepad with helpful tips and reminders for business owners. Goode said the chamber also trained four Hyde Park business owners to work as an ongoing task force to help other members facing workplace violence situations.

Goode said the chamber’s theme for 2013 would continue to be “Advocate, Expose and Inform” (AEI).

Guttman said this year the chamber will provide more opportunity for its member businesses to gain exposure.

The chamber will provide “additional networking events, mentions in social media that boost a business’ Google rank, and print ads will grow our member’s customer traffic and increase word of mouth referrals,” Guttman said. “We also intend to leverage our excellent relationship with local politicians and business leaders to advocate for small businesses who have less access.”