2018 Board of Directors

Executive Committee

Mark Kolar, Jones Lang LaSalle

Kashyap V. Trivedi, Trivedi & Khan, PC

Teresa Faidley, Schaumburg Bank & Trust

Immediate Past Chairperson
Mike Alagna, Alagna Consulting

Kaili Harding, Schaumburg Business Association

Vice Chairpersons
Matt Frank, Village of Schaumburg
Daryl Saylor, Chick-fil-A Golf Road

Board of Directors

Dave Behnke, Better Business Bureau

Katie Berganske Frank, AmCheck

Steve Burgess, Schaumburg Park District

Laura J. Brown, Harper College

Julie Cates, Muscle Activation Schaumburg

Roxanne Parikh, AMITA Health

Scott Felgenhauer, Plaidypus, Inc.

Allen Gabe, Allen Gabe Law, P.C.

Matt Hancock, Andigo

Scott Kay, IKEA

Julie Koelzer, Tenant Advisors

Heather Lloyd, Woodfield Mall

Brian McCue, Walgreen Co

Dave Parulo, Meet Chicago Northwest

John Reitz, Links Technology
Solutions, Inc.

Ron Roberti, Landmark Partners Commercial Real Estate

Pete Rosengren, Daily Herald

Pratik Trivedi, Trivedi Hospitality, LLC

Zach Youngblood, Country Financial


Rich Augustine Sr., R.J. Augustine & Assoc.

Brian Burke, Links Technology Solutions, Inc.

Raymond Horn, Meltzer, Purtill & Stelle, LLC

Jaci Kator, AT&T

Ben Olson, 3 Monkeys and an Aardvark

Tom Palmer, Meltzer, Purtill & Stelle, LLC

Brian Townsend, Village of Schaumburg

Jeff Miller, Divine Signs, Inc.

Meet the Staff

Kaili Harding President
(847) 413-1010, ext. 1012

Kaili joined the Schaumburg Business Association as president with one overriding philosophy: ensuring that the SBA’s activities remain acutely focused on its members and allowing those members to guide the initiatives of the SBA in order to promote and fulfill the interests of the members.

Prior to joining the SBA, Kaili worked as marketing director with one of the largest employers and retailers in the Schaumburg area. She partnered with the SBA as a sponsor of signature events, and volunteered her time to the association’s many events and committees. Kaili’s past professional experience is diverse and includes work in marketing, publishing and real estate, as well as significant chamber experience with the United States Army and the Clarksville, Tennessee, Chamber of Commerce and Economic Development Center.

Kaili has earned a reputation as a dedicated professional who cares about the business community that she works in, and she takes great pride in the connections that are facilitated by and through the Schaumburg Business Association.

Lisa Gilbert
Vice President of Membership
(847) 413-1010, ext. 1013

Lisa brings more than a decade of dynamic professional experience specializing in membership, events and strategic planning. She can assist with all aspects of membership and ensure you receive the most out of your investment with the SBA.

Lisa has been working with nonprofits over the past 20 years. Having received her master’s degree in nonprofit management and an undergraduate degree in education from Indiana University Bloomington. Prior to joining the Schaumburg Business Association, she was the membership director at the University Club in Chicago for nine years. Lisa obtained her master’s degree from Columbia College Chicago and her undergraduate from Indiana University, Bloomington.

Kyle Schulz
Director of Economic Development
(847) 413-1010, ext. 1014

Kyle joins the SBA team having spent the last 10 years in the economic development industry. He brings a diverse set of national economic development experiences to the position. Kyle has spent the last five years working in economic development in the Austin, Texas, area where he developed a recognized Business Retention and Expansion program that identified over $2 million in workforce grant funding, developed an award-winning crowdfunding portal and served as the lead business recruiter for the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce where he worked to attract national and international companies firms to the greater Austin area.

Carol Fiandalo
Director of Finance
(847) 413-1010, ext. 1017

Born and raised in Hampshire, Illinois, Carol joined the SBA in 2011 and is the longest 10-year employee of the SBA. She earned her bachelor’s degree in finance at Northern Illinois University. Carol has had various rolls in treasury and sccounting throughout the years. At the SBA, she is the “numbers lady.” Carol manages all finance and human resource functions. She spends her free time chauffeuring her kids to their various activities, and loves spending time with her family and friends.

Anne Esterquest
Director of Events
(847) 413-1010, ext. 1011

Anne brings a many decades of experience in coordinating fundraisers, event planning and special project management for many different industries. She moved here from Texas over 20 years ago and while she loves her Texas roots, she loves the Midwest more. She is a graduate of Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas, with a public relations degree and is a proud mother of two boys.

Anne is always enthusiastic about creating events that represent compelling topics, ensure excellent networking opportunities and create a platform for economic growth for our members.

Christina Cox
Membership Development Coordinator
(847) 413-1010, ext. 1018

Christina joined the Schaumburg Business Association staff in May 2017. As the membership development coordinator, she helps all members maximize the benefits of their SBA membership, as well as seeking out new companies to grow and diversify the membership. A Naperville native, she worked as a cosmetologist while attending Northeastern Illinois University, graduating with a degree in marketing.

Message from the Chairman

Dear Members

I am honored & excited to be your Schaumburg Business Association Board Chairman for 2018. Through my 15+ years of doing business in Schaumburg, I’ve advised clients through several economic cycles and am excited to say that this is one of the stronger business environments I’ve seen.

In joining the SBA, I was looking to find ways to become engaged and to give back to the collective Schaumburg business environment. I have a personal belief that active participation in the development of a positive & cohesive business community benefits all members.

We have the good fortune to take advantage of very connected and inclusive business community. This community has been developed over the years through the vision and hard work of the collective SBA Staff and membership. In moving forward, lets continue look for ways in 2018 to positively contribute to the growth and success of our community.

I look forward to working with you in 2018!


Mark Kolar
SBA Chairman

Maximize Your SBA Membership

The SBA embodies the spirit of our business community that includes a dynamic blend of corporate, commercial, retail, service and industrial businesses in the largest suburban economic center in the State of Illinois.

  1. Mailing labels to every SBA member (750+ companies in 100 zip codes)
  2. Inclusion in weekly Member News email sent to 4,000 individuals
  3. A detailed online profile with social media links, keyword search and multiple logos on the SBA website which has appoximately 6,000 unique visitors monthly
  4. SBA window decal and membership plaque
  5. Ambassador to show you the ropes and introduce you to the right people you need to meet
  6. Job postings
  7. New member orientations
  8. Networking groups for lead generation and / or business development
  9. Direct savings through affinity partnerships found on the SBA website

We look forward to a future of promise as we build upon the Schaumburg business community’s history of strength, leadership and accomplishment. We welcome you to join our association that includes business newcomers as well as the companies who have grown and prospered throughout Illinois history.

If you’re not yet a member, we offer this warm welcome to join us. The application can be found on the opposite page or completed online at our website.

  • Good Morning Schaumburg
  • Coffee and Contacts
  • Business After Hours
  • Leadership Luncheon
  • New Member Orientations
  • Ribbon Cuttings / Grand Openings
  • Economic Outlook
  • Corporate Culture
  • Women in Business
  • Technology Summit
  • Savour: Food & Drink Experience
  • Ladies Golf Outing
  • Golf Classic
  • Toast of Schaumburg

Networking Groups

CEO Forum

Meets: Second Thursday of every month from 8 to 10 a.m.

Description: We are a peer advisory group. Our objective is to be a place where members can bring problems or opportunities and get candid, objective feedback from fellow business leaders. Although members don’t have to carry the title of CEO, they do have to be the chief decision-maker for their organization and have bottom line P&L responsibility.

Membership view: Business owners, P&L responsibility/chief decision-maker

Open for new members: Non-compete


Meets: First and third Tuesday at 7:30a.m.

Description: Referral discussions and craft talks including a once-a-month self-promoted group business after hours, charity holiday party, baseball games (social activities)

Membership view: Business owners, decision-makers, sales executives, etc.

Open for new members: Non-compete

Dedicated Network Alliance

Meets: Every Thursday excluding the last from 8 to 9 a.m.

Description: Very power referral generation group, dedicated to aggressively providing members with quality business referrals. Large, diverse membership.

Membership view: Business owners, decision-makers, sales executives, etc.

Website: https://schaumburgdna.com

Open for new members: Non-compete

ROI – Results, Opportunities, Impact

Meets: First Wednesday of every month

Description: A non-compete group composed of business owners, decision-makers and executives designed to drive high level conversations and education. All serves as a medium for lead generation where applies.

Membership view: Business owners, decision-makers

Open for new members: Non-compete

SRE – Schaumburg Referral Exchange

Meets: Every Wednesday at 7:30 a.m.

Description: A non-compete, proactive group of business professionals whose objective is to provide a weekly networking program to generate new business through referrals from fellow members.

Open for new members: Non-compete

The FOCUS Group

Meets: Thursdays at 7:30 a.m.

Description: A non-compete group of business professionals dedicated to providing high-quality introductions that will grow our member businesses. Our primary FOCUS and passion is to make certain our members receive the highest quality introductions to grow their business and strengthen their network.

Website: https://schaumburgfocusgroup.com

Open for new members: Non-compete


Meets: Second and fourth Wednesday of each month
at 8 a.m.

Description: A non-competitive, proactive, serious-minded referral group focused on B2B members.

Website: www.b2bn.net

Open for new members: Non-compete

Schaumburg Business Builders

Meets: Every Thursday from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Description: A non-compete group that makes networking a positive, rewarding and fun experience by building relationships between members.

Open for new members: Non-compete

Health & Wellness Alliance

Meets: Every other Friday morning from 8:30 to 9:30 a.m.

Description: The Health and Wellness Alliance is a compete peer advisory group open to all health and wellness service providers in the Schaumburg Business Association.

Open for new members: Open for all Health and Wellness service providers

Community Partners

Schaumburg Park District
Premier facilities, parks, and recreational programs; register online for programs and events.

Meet Chicago Northwest
Tourism and visitors guide for the Northwest suburbs; hotel bookings, restaurant guides and activities.

Schaumburg Township District Library
Second-largest public library in Illinois; award-winning services, resources, and collections.

Prairie Center for the Arts
The hub of arts activities in the northwest suburbs: music, theater, dance and more; online ticket purchase and program schedules.

Schaumburg Boomers
Schaumburg’s newest minor league baseball team.

Village of Schaumburg
In partnership with the community, the mission is to provide the highest quality municipal service.

Schaumburg Township
Schaumburg Township is located in the Northwest suburbs of Chicago. The township serves in excess of 134,000 residents.

Renaissance Schaumburg Hotel & Convention Center
Luxury hotel and convention center near Woodfield Mall; more “a work of art” than architecture.

Schaumburg Regional Airport
Home to numerous businesses, including an award-winning restaurant, aircraft charters, flight training, airplane and helicopter rides, aircraft maintenance, local news helicopters and other aviation-related businesses.

Economic Devlopment

Bolstering economic development/activity in the Schaumburg area is one of the five pillars of the Schaumburg Business Association (SBA). Retaining existing businesses of all descriptions is paramount in order to keep local residents gainfully employed and to support community facilities and services like parks, police and fire, public education and public works (roads, water mains, sewers, parkway trees and even snow removal).

Without the funds and employment that businesses bring to the Schaumburg area, people would undoubtedly be much less interested in living in the Village.

“We, at the Schaumburg Business Association, are actively working to provide the globally-connected businesses that we have here with a well-trained and educated workforce so that they can continue to grow and meet their own goals,” said Kyle Schulz, economic director for the SBA.

“Today’s businesses are all about ‘globalization’ and while some American companies have chosen to move facilities to Mexico or China in order to take advantage of cheap labor, other industries understand that they need to stay here because they need a well-educated workforce to make their high quality products,” he added. “Schaumburg’s economy is literally based on its skilled workforce.”

From the time a child enters the local schools, to the time – years later – that they walk into a work facility, they are being educationally prepared to replace the Baby Boomers who have been working in local firms for years and now want to retire, Schulz noted.

The SBA works with partners across the local area, the region and even the state to recruit workers and fill jobs in Schaumburg, just as they try whenever possible to absorb workers whose companies have chosen to relocate out of Illinois. They also work in local high schools to create among teenage students an awareness of the opportunities and advantages of working in manufacturing (and to overcome prejudices about manufacturing being an undesirable field of endeavor).

The SBA organizes tours of local manufacturing facilities so that students can view them firsthand and see the real-life products they produce locally – like frozen pizzas and straws for WD40 cans.

“They are blown away when they see these facilities because they expect them to be dark and dirty and instead they discover that most local manufacturing plants are cleaner than local homes – especially those with pets,” Schulz said.

“During 2018 the SBA plans to focus even more on the challenges which businesses face when it comes to hiring and retaining qualified employees,” he added. “We must do this if we want to keep the local economy healthy. We need to be the local entity that connects everyone to resources and services offered by local, county and state governmental entities. We are kind of the traffic cop for all of those interactions in hopes we can add jobs and grow our local economy. By doing so, we control and shape our own local growth.”

One of the SBA’s best local partners is Harper College in Palatine, which is becoming nationally recognized for its non-traditional apprenticeships. For several years it has been providing a plethora of educational programs to train future employees for local manufacturers. But now it has further expanded its reach by offering apprenticeship programs in fields of study that have never before been considered for such work-study programs in the United States – like insurance, cyber security, graphic arts and banking/finance. In fact, community college leaders from across the country are coming to Harper to observe the programs in action and are seeking help in setting up their own programs.

Until two years ago, apprenticeships were not even in the lexicon of community colleges across this country, but since President Obama’s State of the Union Address in 2015 when he proposed them, they have been taking off across the country with the full support of the U.S. Departments of Labor, Commerce and Education, according to Rebecca Lake, dean of workforce and economic development at Harper. Obama’s interest in apprenticeships happened to coincide with Zurich Insurance Group’s interest in such a program.

“Zurich Insurance Group approached us in early 2015, wanting to create an apprenticeship program like they have in Europe, which would train students to become underwriters and mid-level claims adjustors,” Lake said. About two-thirds of high school-aged students in Switzerland opt for such a vocational training program, which combines work experience with higher education.

“Soon afterward, the Illinois Bankers Association also came to us wanting to start an apprenticeship program for loan officers and managers and other companies have followed, asking about apprenticeships in fields like supply chain management, graphic arts, cyber security and several other areas,” Lake said. As a result, by fall 2018, apprenticeships are expected to be offered at Harper in a total of nine fields and students who participate will graduate after two years with Associate of Applied Science degrees.

But while they are studying, they will be simultaneously working for their sponsoring firm. They will work in the firms on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays and study at Harper on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Their employers will pay them a salary and will simultaneously pay their tuition. In addition, the credits they receive from their Harper efforts will be transferable if they later choose to study for a bachelor’s degree at a four-year university, Lake said.

Harper currently has 92 registered apprentices in four different programs. Apprentices mirror the diversity of the college’s overall student body, representing high school graduates and older career changers spanning a wide range of ages – from 18 to 57 years old – and a variety of racial and ethnic populations.

Among current apprentices, Harper College enjoys an 84 percent retention rate and the average student grade point average is 3.61, which is excitingly high.

“We have an academic coach who regularly meets with each apprentice and with members of the faculty to monitor how students are doing in their studies and who also regularly visits their employers to see how they are doing on their jobs,” Lake said.

“In addition, we welcome our cooperating companies to send their on-the-job mentors to four training sessions each year. We teach them how to both assess and motivate their apprentices, breaking the instruction down into basic, easy-to-follow steps.”

“We feel that these apprenticeship programs are a win for the sponsoring companies, for the students and for Harper College, too.” Lake said.

In fact, the White House awarded Harper at $2.5 million federal grant in 2015 to support the Harper “Apprenticeships on Demand” initiative, calling them the “ultimate learn and earn” opportunity.

And then-Deputy Secretary of Labor Chris Lu hailed Harper’s white-collar apprenticeship efforts, stating that “this model is what post-secondary education has to be about in this country.”

Global Reach

The Schaumburg area is one of the most vital, exciting and diverse business regions in the world and has been an example that other communities envy and emulate.

“Schaumburg is a global business community. We have major businesses here from Europe, from Asia, from Africa, from the Caribbean, from South America,” said Kaili Harding, president of the SBA. “You see that global influence in everything from our fantastic restaurants to our retail environment. There are so many business services here that are tying us to this global network.”

It all works because Schaumburg is located within the Chicago market’s transportation hub that includes railway, air freight and major interstates and allows products produced in the northwestern suburb to be transported around the country and allows components produced elsewhere to be easily brought in.

“Schaumburg is easily accessible and great for moving products and services,” Harding added. “It is so nice to see the world come together, right here in Schaumburg.”

Members agree.

“We are located four exits from O’Hare Airport. We are located next to the sixth-largest shopping center in the United States. It is also an architecturally fantastic facility, so we have many advantages over other convention centers in the United States,” said Dieter Heigl, general manager of the Renaissance Schaumburg Hotel Convention Center.

“It’s convenient. You can eat here, sleep here and can even go shopping nearby since there is a local shuttle to Woodfield Mall,” he added. “We offer all that under one roof.”

“We want to be a partner and to help our small businesses in the Schaumburg area which we cater to,” Heigl said.

Ashraf Tbakhi, owner of the Pita House restaurant, has been a member of the SBA since 2006 and swears by the benefits of that membership.

“It helps a lot,” he said of the SBA. “Schaumburg is a very good area for our business with lots of people from around the world who live here.”

Pita House actively markets its Middle Eastern and Assyrian food to employees of international businesses in Schaumburg. So the Pita House has become well-known for consistent, quality products, good service and healthy foods, Tbakhi noted.

International manufacturers are also flocking to the Schaumburg area. For instance, Kuriyama of America, Inc., which produces a complete line of thermoplastic, rubber and metal hose products and accessories including couplings and fittings, for use in industrial and commercial applications, has its sales and marketing headquarters for North America in Schaumburg. The firm will celebrate its 50th anniversary in 2018.

“We have over 5,000 distributors in North America and are branching out more globally because we are looking to expand our overseas reach,” said Tim O’Neill, marketing manager.

“One thing that we really like about Schaumburg is that it has many resources to offer us. We have our manufacturing nearby, our warehouse regularly purchases its equipment within Schaumburg and we work with three different temp agencies in Schaumburg to help with our staffing needs,” O’Neill said.

“Being part of the SBA has been really beneficial. It has helped us integrate more into the greater Schaumburg business community. Its manufacturing summits have been very good, as well,” he added. “There are nice people there and we have learned a lot of great things.”

The Swedish retailer IKEA also has a strong presence in Schaumburg. In fact, the local store is one of only two stores in the world that feature a unique octagon layout, according to Scott Kay, store manager. IKEA currently has a presence around the world with 400 stores in 28 different countries.

“As a Swedish company, we bring our identity within our product range all across the world through our unique product line and our furniture,” Kay said. “We also offer a Swedish restaurant, bistro and food market. You can get a taste of Sweden – all under one roof. When you walk in the door, you can smell the Cinnabuns, one of our best-selling, most notable products. We have regulars who come in every morning for our 99-cent breakfast before work.”

“We take great pride in being not just a global partner, but in being a local partner, too,” he added.

Schaumburg’s global diversity even reaches into its banks. MB Financial Bank in Schaumburg has a native of Poland, Marcin Bos, as its vice president/banking center manager.

“It is a very exciting point of pride for us to become a part of the communities we serve,” Bos said. “We partner with the SBA which is an exciting group with at least 10 to 20 different cultures coming together. This gives us an amazing opportunity to network for mutual causes and to try to cater to all of those cultures by having a diverse staff in our branch. One of the reasons we joined the SBA was for the diversity of its clients and the diversity of its members,” he added.

By engaging the community in the work of economic development and aligning public and private sector leadership, the Harding and the SBA feel that the Schaumburg region will continue to strengthen its status as a premier international corporate headquarters location and as a major retail destination in the U.S.