President’s Letter: November, 2018

As I teased in The Pallet, November's a big month for voting. On the first Tuesday of the month, we vote for state and federal candidates. On the second Tuesday of the month, we vote for board positions for the IACAC. It is humbling to see new faces running for the board - it tells us that the energy the group is generating makes people want to be part of it and advance us even further. We are fortunate to have guidance, advice and support from many past presidents and board members - and what those people have to say and offer is extremely valuable and informs us as we debate and consider new opportunities for our members.

The annual election luncheon will be held Tuesday, November 13th, at the Department of Aviation. We encourage all our members to attend not just to network, but to meet our candidates, all of whom will be speaking and presenting themselves at the event. If you can't make the event in person but are a member in good standing of the IACAC, you can vote for the candidates by absentee ballot.

All you need to register for the luncheon or download and submit your ballot can be found right here.

December Holiday Luncheon

Mark your calendars for Tuesday - December 11th - a little over a month from now - to join us for our annual Holiday Luncheon at Belvedere Events & Banquets in Elk Grove Village. As always, we encourage everyone to bring an unwrapped toy for the Toys for Tots collection that IACAC Board Member (and Marine) Maureen Schmitt arranges. Please also bring items that we can raffle off to raise money for our Scholarship Fund. Tickets are a very affordable $35 for members and non-members alike and we encourage everyone to join us and participate. Registration is open for the luncheon at this link.

IACAC Board On The Road - TIACA and WESCCON

Chuck Menini and I were both in Toronto for TIACA's Air Cargo Forum 2018 - it was extremely informative and gave us a few great ideas for topics to have for our upcoming luncheons, including UAV's and explosive-sniffing dogs. Along with this were very interesting sessions, some of which are available on TIACA's Periscope page that were live-streamed or by going back through TIACA's Twitter feed from those few days. 

If you're interested in hearing what Chuck and I had to say, why not check out this video from the IACAC Facebook page? 

I was also fortunate enough to score an interview with TIACA's Secretary General Vladimir Zubkov. That video is also on the IACAC Facebook page - but go ahead and use this direct link.

Meanwhile, on the West Coast, Brian Bartolotta was exhibiting at WESCCON and the word everybody was buzzing about was tariffs and what it has meant for importers as well as freight forwarders.

Join us (or join us again) in 2019

We are very excited to be kicking off membership renewals for 2019. We have plenty of great things planned for 2019 including members-only events, discounts and service offerings from vendors who want your business. We're extremely affordable at only $130 for a corporate membership and $50 for an individual membership. Don't wait - renew today.

President’s Letter: October, 2017

As you saw from the cover picture, we had a great time at Church Street Brewing Company for our networking event. I was unable to make it due to a commitment at my eldest daughter's school, but those who were there reported having a great time. If you didn't go check out the pictures, visit the Facebook gallery. Like the page as well - we post our events there for people to see and share.

Hurricane Maria and Puerto Rico

I have no words for the people suffering the effects of the three hurricanes which have struck the US mainland and Caribbean. Hardest hit was Puerto Rico and the health and safety dangers are real as people are getting by without electricity, clean drinking water and food. If you feel it in your heart to donate, Business Insider had a very good list of Puerto Rican charities who can benefit from your donation of money or supplies and are working to get them to those affected, which is the entire island territory.

Out & About: Freighters World Conference and WESCCON.

This week, I attended the Freighters World Conference in Chicago as a guest of the presenting sponsor. As it turns out, I was volunteered and asked to participate in a forwarder panel as well with representatives from Dachser and Flexport. It was an honor to represent the IACAC at this very prestigious, global event held downtown at the Intercontinental Hotel on Michigan Avenue.

Not only was I there waving the flag, but long-time IACAC members Ken Ryan and Sharon Roman were there representing their companies who were sponsors, Quick Caller and Rockford International Airport. Also attending were Caroline Pappas from AirBridge and Gina Summerford of Cargolux. Cargolux took home some hardware at the awards dinner on Tuesday night. On Wednesday, Shawn McWhorter of NCA was on an airline panel talking about the unique challenges of freighter airlines.

In October, Brian Bartolotta and I will both be at WESCCON where I was asked to participate in a panel representing the view of forwarders. I'll also be attending the TIACA Executive Summit in Miami.

Don't forget to apply for the Scholarship!

We put it in The Pallet and I'll remind everyone again here: This. Is. Free. Money. If your company (or you, the individual) are members of the IACAC, immediate family members are eligible to submit an application for consideration. We require a copy of the applicant's transcript, a completed application and written responses to three essay questions. The deadline is the end of October and we'll be reminding everybody throughout the month. Winners will be announced at the Holiday Luncheon in December.

The rest of the 2017 calendar (for now).

We've got a few more events planned before the end of the year, but stay tuned because we can always try to sneak something additional on to the calendar before all is said and done.

  • October 10th - Monthly luncheon. We're all tired of congestion at the airport and we're going to hear from someone who thinks they have a solution. We need to think ahead, we need to imagine being ready to load and unload before the truck is even backed in. We're talking congestion avoidance. We're at the Holiday Inn. Register today here.
  • November 14th - Elections! The IACAC elections take place in accordance with our by-laws on the second Tuesday in November. If you're interested in running for one of the available positions for a two-year term, please contact Brian Bartolotta for more information and to put your name into consideration.
  • December 12th - IACAC Holiday Luncheon. We'll be at Belvedere Banquets again collecting donations for Toys for Tots and looking for raffle prizes. Mark your calendars.

 

 

 

President’s Letter – August, 2017

Just because it is a summer month, doesn't mean that we're taking a break. To the contrary, between vacations (we're checking out the upper parts of Michigan as a family this week) and back to school for the kids, the IACAC has an active slate this month and into the fall. Let's dive into the upcoming and look back at what happened.

Early bird ends today for our golf outing and slots and sponsorships opportunities remain.

When we talk about the golf outing, I cannot stress enough that we do it for the students. The golf outing, along with our holiday luncheon, are the primary fundraising vehicles where we generate money that provides money to our annually awarded IACAC Scholarships. We're accepting submissions for 2017, so be sure to take a look. 

This year, the IACAC has worked to set up an IRS-recognized 501(c)(3) charitable organization so any contributions to sponsor the event or raffle prizes at our luncheon afterwards are a legally recognized tax deduction.

Don't let a tax break be the only reason you donate - do it so we can help defray the cost of education for worth students. 

Through today, registration is $400.00/foursome which includes golf, cart and lunch afterwards. Tomorrow, the cost goes up to $500.00/foursome. Single golfers are $125.00 for golf and lunch and lunch only is $35.00.

We also have hole and bridge sponsorships where for $150.00 and $100.00, respectively, we will place a sign with your company's name and/or logo where golfers will see it as the travel the course for the outing.

Register at this link to secure your golf spot or to sponsor today.

Rare opportunity with O'Hare at the end of August.

We could not be more thankful for the contributions and help of 2017 new member Adam Rod and the City of Chicago's Department of Aviation. Working with Adam, we scheduled an event open to everyone with Ginger Evans on August 29th. We'll have a Q&A session with Ginger about all things O'Hare. If you're curious about passengers, cargo, future plans, surrounding infrastructure, new carriers or flights, she is the person to ask. And if she doesn't have the answers I trust that she and her team can get them for us.

After the Q&A, a limited number of seats are available to tour O'Hare inside the fence line. On a narrated tour, we will cruise the taxiways and ramps only seen for most of us from inside a plane as we're departing or arriving. Because of the security component, registrants will notice some additional and different questions and we must submit an attendee list for screening to the Department prior to the event. 

It's free to attend the Q&A, $65.00 for the bus tour. We'll be providing continental style breakfast prior to the event which begins at 10:00 AM.

Click here to join us August 29th.

Other past & upcoming events:

  • Thank you to BCS Placement and Position : Global for your sponsorship of our July networking event at MB Financial Park at Rosemont. Rush cover band, food & beverage from Adobe Gila's and some amazing fireworks afterwards. The people in attendance really enjoyed their time and the consensus was to do this event annually.
  • Mark your calendars for our September events: September 12th will be our monthly luncheon and will be education-focused. Olya Lebedyeva is running point on this and there will be more details to follow, but know that we're going to seek participation from surrounding universities and colleges to promote their job and placement departments. 
  • September 21st we're back at Church Street Brewing for another networking event. We're looking for sponsors, so if you're interested, contact IACAC to help sponsor the event.

President’s Letter: January, 2017

Happy New Year, everyone! As my tenure as the President of the IACAC begins, I wanted to take a moment to introduce myself and talk about what I hope will happen in 2017 for the IACAC.

My name is Scott Case, and I am the President of Position : Global, a company that is focused on marketing and branding for companies in the logistics sector. I was fortunate to have been selected to design the new IACAC website several years ago and served on the Board of Directors last year. It is a pleasure to serve the Association as your President and I look forward to building on the work of the past Presidents.

2017 Events:

We are going to continue to build on the success of educational, social and professional networking events that took place in 2016. We are planning our usual series of luncheons, most of which will be held on the second Tuesday of the month. January will be an outlier because of the way the calendar is falling with everyone getting back to work and school winter vacations. We'll be on Tuesday, January 17th, so watch this space for more information.

We'll of course have our March Madness event, as well as our golf outing and holiday luncheon. There is the potential to add other events, such as bowling in Rosemont, a Wolves game or reprising some fun summer nights spent at Church Street Brewing Company.

Scholarship and giving back:

We recently learned about the young woman who won the IACAC Scholarship at Harper College this year. In the late 90's, the Association endowed a chair with nearly $10,000 in donations. We'll be telling her story in a post later this month, but what's important to know is that we are focused on scholarship this year, both our own and the ones we've endowed at Northwestern, Harper and Oakton. We are also working to create a separate 501(c)(3) charitable organization to pursue greater opportunities to raise more money to award students looking to continue their education.

Vendor partnerships to benefit IACAC members:

We value our members who spend their time to come to our events and be involved. We know it is commitment of both time and money, and want to make sure that we are delivering value. This is why in 2017 we are focused on identifying companies who serve the air cargo community and securing agreements that provide services, offer discounts or other considerations exclusive to our membership. We will have one such announcement later this month that is important for anyone who works with hazardous materials. Stay tuned.

Join or renew for 2017 today!

We'll be beating the drum for this, but with all these exciting things coming this year, don't miss out! Membership is only $50 for individuals and $130 for corporations with up to three votes and points of contact. You can do it online or do it on paper. Either way, do it today!

IACAC Special Election – March 8, 2016

The IACAC Board of Directors, in accordance with the association by-laws, is holding a special election to fill the vacancy of the office of President that was created when Sam Krouse resigned shortly after his election. Sam left the industry and took a job in another city.

We have two candidates who have declared for this special election, Brian Bartolotta of BCS Placement and Herman Ruiz of Channel Distribution.

Their biographies are reprinted below:


Brian Bartolotta

Brian has been a member of the IACAC for several years and has been very active in the international transportation and logistics communities and associations including the CCBFA, IACAC, the Traffic Club of Chicago and the CSCMP.

Brian is currently President of BCS Placement, which focuses on recruiting, education and consulting for the international transportation, freight forwarding, air cargo and logistics industries.

Brian has consistently increased revenues annually for BCS since 1997 and has advised and implemented successful growth strategies for other local private corporations. He has very strong business contacts including Fortune 500 executives and professionals.

By leveraging his diverse business network and analyzing social and data trends, Brian’s contributions will include increasing IACAC membership, IACAC revenues and participation.

Brian attended the University of Illlinois at Urbana-Champaign where he majored in Economics. Brian was an Evans Scholar, a full tuition scholarship based on academic and scholastic performance. Brian was also a member of the Illinois Men’s Wrestling team.

Mr. Bartolotta is active in several local charities including the Special Olympics. He is married with three children, ages 10, 8 and 5.

 

Herman Ruiz

Herman Ruiz, Jr., began working for the airlines in 1966 with Flying Tiger Line and in 1968 moved to Airlift International working in STL/IAH/SFO/LAX and IND. While with Airlift, he was their Chief Cargo Agent then Cargo Supervisor. He later moved to being a loadmaster working on MAC flights out of Travis Air Force base (SUU). He moved back to Chicago to work for Air Wisconsin International setting up their Road Feeder Service within the Midwest. He also worked for Airmax then moved to Alliance Airlines to handle their cargo claims and teach their hazmat classes.

He moved to International Express to run their bonded warehouse and handle ocean imports and exports. From their he moved to Gotoh Distribution and ran the FTZ, Bonded warehouse and G. O. department.

He then left to work for Garrison CFS and ran the Bonded warehouse and G.O. Department working with the rail lines and steamship lines.

He now works at Channel Distribution Corp. working in sales and running the Bonded warehouse and G.O. Department. He also teaches G.O. Classes for the industry working closing with CBP.

Herman is active with the Knights of Columbus, Boy Scouts of America and the American Legion along with the IACAC.

He is a past President and Chairman of the Board of the IACAC.


 

Members in good standing are eligible to vote in the election, including those who have joined since our last election in November, 2015.

There are two ways to vote:

  1. Click here or on the picture of the ballot to download and submit your ballot to me no later than midnight, Monday, March 7th.
  2. Attend our March luncheon on Tuesday, March 8th to tender your ballot in person. Click here for more details and to register to attend. Seating is limited.

The ballots will be counted and the winner announced at the conclusion of the March meeting.

Click here to download the special election ballot for IACAC President.
Click here to download the special election ballot for IACAC President.

CBP Updates ACE Deployment Timeline

In what can only be called great news for the trade, CBP has come to their senses and made a change in their deployment schedule, no longer focusing on February 28, 2016, as the drop-dead date to be filing entries in ACE. They have instead opted for a more graduated timetable. Their announcement is reprinted below:

______

Working in close coordination with the Department of Homeland Security, the Border Interagency Executive Council, and the White House, U.S. Customs and Border Protection has been actively tracking and assessing stakeholder readiness for the mandatory filing of all electronic entries and corresponding entry summaries in the Automated Commercial Environment (ACE). While significant progress has been made, continued concerns about stakeholder readiness have necessitated an updated timeline for the mandatory transition to ACE for electronic entry and entry summary filing.  This updated timeline continues to align with our December 2016 deadline for full implementation of the Single Window via ACE.

Taking into consideration the input from our stakeholders, CBP has implemented a staggered approach to the mandatory filing of electronic entries and corresponding entry summaries in ACE, and the decommissioning of electronic entry/entry summary filing capabilities in the Automated Commercial System (ACS). For further information on the dates and impacts, please visit www.cbp.gov/ace.

UPDATED ACE TRANSITION TIMELINE

February 28, 2016

Beginning February 28, 2016 CBP will start divesting the legacy Automated Commercial System (ACS) by:

  1. Offering limited Client Representative and Technology Service Desk support to the trade for ACS entry/entry summary types that are available in ACE.
  2. Performing ACS maintenance during peak business hours.
  3. Providing processing priority to ACE entries where corresponding ACS entries are still available.

March 31, 2016

Filers will be required to file in ACE and no longer permitted to file in ACS the following transactions.

  1. Electronic entry summaries, associated with the following entry types, with no PGA data:
    • 01 - Consumption
    • 03 - Consumption - Antidumping/Countervailing Duty
    • 11 - Informal
    • 23 - Temporary Importation Bond (TIB)
    • 51 - Defense Contract Administration Service Region (DCASR)
    • 52 - Government - Dutiable
  2. Electronic entries and corresponding entry summaries, associated with the entry types above, with data for the following agencies:
    • Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) for Lacey Act, unless paired with other Partner Government Agency (PGA) data
    • National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), unless paired with other PGA data

The implementation of these capabilities through ACE means that the filing of the following transactions will no longer be accepted in ACS:

    • Electronic entry summaries (Entry types 01, 03, 11, 23, 51 and 52) with no PGA data
    • Electronic entries and corresponding entry summaries (Entry types 01, 03, 11, 23, 51 and 52) with APHIS Lacey Act data, unless paired with other PGA data on the same transaction
    • Electronic entries and corresponding entry summaries (Entry types 01, 03, 11, 23, 51 and 52) with NHTSA data, unless paired with other PGA data on the same transaction

May 28, 2016

Filers will be required to file in ACE and no longer permitted to file in ACS the following transactions:

  1. Electronic entries, associated with the following entry types, with no PGA data:
    • 01 - Consumption
    • 03 - Consumption - Antidumping/Countervailing Duty
    • 11 - Informal
    • 23 - Temporary Importation Bond (TIB)
    • 51 - Defense Contract Administration Service Region (DCASR)
    • 52 - Government – Dutiable

Required filing of these entries includes those with APHIS Lacey Act and NHTSA data, unless paired with other PGA data.

  1. Electronic entries and corresponding entry summaries for the following transactions:
    • Entry type 06 - Consumption - Foreign Trade Zone (FTZ) with no PGA data
    • Entry types 01, 03, 06, 11, 23, 51, 52 with APHIS Lacey Act data, unless paired with other PGA data on the same transaction.
    • Entry types 01, 03, 06, 11, 23, 51, 52 with NHTSA data, unless paired with other PGA data on the same transaction.

Required filing of this entry type includes entries with APHIS Lacey Act and NHTSA data, unless paired with other PGA data.

The implementation of these capabilities through ACE means that the filing of the following transactions will no longer be accepted in ACS:

    • Electronic entries associated with entry types 01, 03, 11, 23, 51 and 52 with no PGA data.
    • Entries and corresponding entry summaries associated with entry type 06 with no PGA data.
    • Electronic entries/entry summaries, associated with entry types 01, 03, 06, 11, 23, 51 and 52, with APHIS Lacey Act data, unless paired with other PGA data on the same transaction.
    • Electronic entries/entry summaries, associated with entry types 01, 03, 06, 11, 23, 51 and 52 with NHTSA data, unless paired with other PGA data on the same transaction.

Food and Drug Administration (FDA) filings will continue to be allowed in ACS to provide more time for industry to transition to ACE.  Further information will be provided on the mandatory filing in ACE for FDA data.

Summer 2016 (Specific dates to be provided)

Filers will be required to file in ACE and no longer permitted to file in ACS the following transactions.

  1. Electronic entries and entry summaries, associated with the following entry types, with no PGA data (except for APHIS Lacey Act or NHTSA) will be deployed and must be filed in ACE:

Entry Types:

    • 02 - Consumption - Quota/Visa
    • 07 - Consumption - Antidumping/Countervailing Duty and Quota/Visa Combination
    • 12 - Informal - Quota/Visa (other than textiles)
    • 21 - Warehouse
    • 22 - Re-Warehouse

Entry Summary Types:

    • 02 - Consumption - Quota/Visa
    • 07 - Consumption - Antidumping/Countervailing Duty and Quota/Visa Combination
    • 11 - Informal
    • 12 - Informal - Quota/Visa (other than textiles)
    • 21 - Warehouse
    • 22 - Re-Warehouse
    • 31 - Warehouse Withdrawal Consumption
    • 32 - Warehouse Withdrawal - Quota
    • 34 - Warehouse Withdrawal Antidumping/Countervailing Duty
    • 38 - Warehouse Withdrawal - Antidumping/Countervailing Duty & Quota/Visa Combination
  1. Throughout summer 2016, the following agencies will provide, if they have not already done so, functionality for filing electronically in ACE:
    • Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS);
    • Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms and Explosives (ATF);
    • Remaining APHIS data (APHIS Core);
    • Centers for Disease Control (CDC);
    • Defense Contract Management Agency (DCMA);
    • Directorate of Defense Trade Controls (DDTC);
    • Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA);
    • Enforcement and Compliance Commission (E&C);
    • Environmental Protection Agency (EPA);
    • Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS);
    • Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS);
    • National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS); and
    • Alcohol and Tobacco, Tax and Tariff Bureau (TTB).

Agencies will provide further information regarding the conclusion of their pilots.  For details on the current deployment status and how to participate in PGA pilots, please reference the PGA documentation at cbp.gov/ace-pga.

The implementation of these capabilities through ACE means that the following transactions will no longer be accepted in ACS:

    • Electronic entries associated with entry types 02, 07, 12, 21, or 22
    • Electronic entry Summaries associated with entry types 02, 07, 12, 21 and 22, 31, 32, 34 or 38

Further information will be provided on the deployment of remaining core trade processing capabilities in ACE, and the mandatory use of ACE for all remaining electronic portions of the CBP cargo process.

Optional and Available ACE Functions during Transition

In addition to the specified filing requirements for each mandatory date, electronic filings will be permitted for those wishing/opting to file in ACE prior to the mandatory filing requirements in ACE for the following:

  • Entry summaries associated with entry types 01, 03, 11, 23, 51, and 52, until March 31, 2016 when they are required in ACE
  • Data for APHIS Lacey Act or NHTSA, until March 31, 2016 when it is required in ACE
  • Entries associated with entry types 01, 03, 11, 23, 51, and 52, until May 28, 2016 when they are required in ACE
  • Entries and entry summaries associated with entry type 06, until May 28, 2016 when they are required in ACE

We would like to reiterate that the updated transition timeline aligns with the December 2016 deadline for full implementation of the Single Window via ACE.  CBP appreciates all efforts from the CBP, trade community, and PGA stakeholders as we continue to work together toward the complete and successful transition to ACE.

Truck congestion at O’Hare – We want your comments

It's not the queue to get into the cargo areas of O'Hare, but it's what it looks like all the time right now.
It's not the queue to get into the cargo areas of O'Hare, but it's what it looks like all the time right now.

 

Things are a mess at O'Hare right now, and we want your feedback.

The lines to access the cargo areas are horrible. Once you're in the facility, the service doesn't get people handled quickly, politely or respectfully.

Air cargo is the most expensive mode of transport, but the way it is being handled right now at O'Hare is far from a premium service.

The IACAC, along with the Chicago Customs Brokers and Forwarders Association, are working to find solutions to this problem. We make no promises, but we are at the earliest stages of engaging all the stakeholders to better share our concerns and suggestions to take steps towards improving things.

If you have specific comments or suggestions, or would like to share something that you've experienced, please leave a comment below and we'll include these concerns as part of our discussions.

IACAC President’s Letter – December, 2014

This is the final President's letter that I will write. Next month, this space is turned over to the 2015 IACAC President, Jim Wilbrandt, who was elected to the position last month.Thank you!

It has been a year of change at IACAC, and to go back and look at what we accomplished as an organization month-by-month amazes me. None of it would have happened without a tremendous board of directors; people who give tirelessly of themselves for our members and the air cargo industry in general. Many of those people will be continuing on next year, some will be retiring at the end of this year. All are to be thanked for their hard work, dedication and service to the community.

When I look back on my tenure as President, there are a few things that happened of which I am most proud.

  1. A new iacac.com website. This new site did wonders for us. Unveiled in February along with a rethink of our monthly Pallet and a push into social media that we previously did not use to the fullest extent, we expanded the reach and message of the Association. Presently, The Pallet is sent to close to a thousand people in Chicago and around the globe. The new site also generated marketing revenue that eclipsed the previous four years combined.
  2. A renewed airline focus. Our name tells our charter; the International Air Cargo Association of Chicago. Look back at our past presidents list. There are countless names there who came from the ranks of airlines, and this year we worked hard to re-engage carriers and had their participation both as speakers at our monthly luncheons and as sponsors of numerous events. To those carriers who have been involved, please accept my thanks and I encourage you to continue to engage with the new board in 2015 and beyond. The number of airline members eclipses the total of the past eight years.
  3. A successful golf outing which generates scholarship dollars. Our golf outing was a great success and we surpassed last year's attendance in what was a continuing tough climate for social industry outings. The money raised at the golf outing (and at our upcoming holiday luncheon) goes right into the scholarship fund for students to continue their studies; look for the announcements again next Spring when we call for applications and look forward to helping defray the cost schooling for worthy recipients.
  4. An increased membership. Between people signing up for the early bird specials and our push to get people to join, we have added fifty more new members to the Association. We realize that with businesses consolidating into larger and larger companies, some long-time members go away. However, it seems like that when a larger company closes, a few smaller ones open as talented men and women take on new opportunities. For them, we are here to support and help them grow.

Our holiday luncheon next Tuesday, December 9th, is important for three reasons. Well, maybe four.

First and most importantly, it is a chance to bring a toy for our annual Toys for Tots drive that is spearheaded by Maureen Schmitt of Mallory Alexander. We've partnered with the Marines for many years in the past and our community's generosity is a wonderful thing to behold. Please come help a child have something under their tree this Christmas. Second, we raffle off some really great prizes, including a pair of tickets to Paris donated generously every year by Air France. (Note, the winner is responsible for the taxes which are approximately $200 per ticket). The money from those raffles benefits our scholarship fund. Third, come and socialize with your fellow IACAC members before the holidays and commitments overrun us all. Fourth and finally, it's a chance to RENEW YOUR MEMBERSHIP FOR 2015. Get started, be one of the first to be on the 2015 membership rolls.

For more information and to register, click here.

This year's board was one of the strongest boards I have ever worked with. We made a lot of changes internally which positively affected how we are seen externally, and I can say we are heading in the right direction. I will return next year as Chairman, after which I will step down and remain involved as a paid member.

For me personally it was an exciting year of change as well. I departed my previous company to start my own place in August called The Chit Chat Group. Chit Chat opened with a focus on education, training and consulting logistics companies. In October, Chit Chat signed a two-year deal to exclusively represent Atlas Logistic Network throughout the Americas. This put the company rather quickly on the global stage, representing the third largest exclusive network in the world.

While the Chicago agencies are filled, we're looking for members in other gateway cities throughout the United States.

For more information on Atlas as well as our ongoing classes, check us out at www.thechitchatgroup.com.

Once again, thank you for the opportunity to serve as your President for 2014, and I am eager for the leadership that Jim Wilbrandt and the new board will bring in 2015. This new board is equally as strong and forwarding thinking and I'm looking forward to their certain success.

2015 IACAC election absentee ballot available

Members of the IACAC:

You may now download the 2015 Absentee Ballot for the IACAC elections.

If you will be unable to attend next Tuesday's luncheon meeting (registration open here), then you may download, complete and email this ballot to Christine Aguirre.

Absentee ballots must be received by November 10, 2014, to be counted at the meeting on Tuesday, November 11th.

Note the following for the ballots:

  • If your company is a corporate member with TWO contacts, you are allowed two votes.
  • If you have joined as an individual or have only one person listed on your IACAC record, you are allowed one vote.
  • Each position allows for the submission of a name for a write-in candidate.
  • Winners will be announced at the IACAC luncheon next Tuesday at the Holiday Inn, Elk Grove Village.

If you have any questions, you may contact Christine Aguirre by email at chragu27 (at) yahoo.com.