Over the next several days we will celebrate the founding of our nation and spend time in the company of family, friends and colleagues. Independence Day provides us with the opportunity to reflect on the freedoms we have and the sacrifices made by previous generations that afforded of us the liberties, prosperity and comforts we enjoy today.
At the Chamber’s offices we are constantly reminded of the inspiring contributions made by the members of our armed services and their families. Several staffers of the Hiring Our Heroes initiative of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce have been working out of our facilities for the past several months. Their presence in our office is great reminder that the freedoms we enjoy in our business and life are continuously defended by the noblest of citizens.
These brave men and women volunteer to go to some of the most dangerous spots on the planet and they – and their families – deserve our admiration and praise.
We live in the greatest country on the planet and with our freedoms, so many of us choose to give back to a cause. This sense of community giving is abundant in Naperville and over the next several days hundreds of volunteers will help the Naperville Exchange Club produce Ribfest.
In addition to providing families with a first-class entertainment activity, the event raises hundreds of thousands of dollars for worthy charities in our area. (In full disclosure I have been affiliated and involved with the Exchange Club for years and think they perform an excellent service for our community.)
Without the support of the volunteers, corporate sponsors and patrons these charities would have to turn to other sources for funding. There is a growing academic field of “social entrepreneurship,” and we can look back on the past 25 years of success of the Ribfest as a model for the future.
Naperville’s business and civic leaders have always taken the burden of solving problems and finding ways to help those most in need. While we are celebrating our nation’s independence, we should also recognize the talented and devoted members of our community that step up and give generously of their time, talents and treasure to helping those in need of assistance.
Naperville has always been home to business leaders who value others before self and strive to leave the community in a condition better than they found it. I find this characteristic to be worthy of honoring this holiday week and hope you do too.
Thank you for your continued membership and support.
Interim President & CEO
Naperville Area Chamber of Commerce