Chicago has numerous nicknames, one of which is Second City. While the entertainment at TEI's 65th Annual Conference featured the hilarious Second City Comedy Troupe, one thing is clear: The Institute's Chicago Chapter was absolutely second to none in its efforts to make conference registrants feel at home when TEI gathered in Chicago in late October. Members and guests who attended the conference are in their debt.
Far in advance of the conference, the chapter formed a Hospitality Committee to make plans--and implement them--to make this year's conference one that registrants would not forget. Cathy Stevens served as a chair of the Hospitality Committee, and she was joined by Chapter President Monica Melgarejo, and the following members of the chapter: John Boncuore, Karen Boyaris, Irene Brajner, Dorothy Chao, Mark Fadden Tim Kleespies, Rebecca Kline, Helena Klumpp, Janice Lucchesi, Rita Makaris, Cindy Malone, John Mann, Matt Patterson, Madeline Schneider, Tom Sturomski, and Judy Zelisko. The committee developed a plan to prepare gift bags for distribution at the conference and to hold a number of drawings at the Sunday Welcome Reception, and it undertook to collect items for distribution as well as well funds from professional service firms to purchase other items. The group also successfully importuned chapter members to have their companies contribute items for inclusion in the gift bags and drawings.
Finally, the chapter's plans came to fruition through the generous participation of not only several members, but also their spouses and significant others at the conference. The chapter has asked that the following individuals be recognized (the names in parentheses are of the members): Bobby Stevens (Cathy Stevens), Jay Miller (Madeline Schnider), Craig Stepnicka (Janice Lucchesi), Julie Patterson (Matt Patterson), and Scott Bozzi (Rita Makaris). These couples not only "talked the talk, but walked the walk" of staffing the hospitality desk at the conference.
Two more people deserve mention. Karen Repp and Olivia Makowski of the Brunswick tax staff contributed mightily. They kept inventory of all the items collected for the drawings and gift...