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CEO Class of 2017 Finishes Strong


Personal Businesses Come Alive At CEO Trade Show

The 9th Annual Trade Show at the Keller Convention Center received huge support from the community. All the preparation and energy the students created for their personal business came to life as each student greeted potential customers who were interested in their products and services. 

Dustin Gurley won the 2017 John H. Schultz Scholarship. This was created in memory of John H. Schultz and his wife Fran, an Effingham area entrepreneur and businessman. It was presented by their son Bob Schultz to Dustin as a $1,000 annual scholarship.

Sidney Webster and Alex Denoyer were voted on by their CEO peers as "Entrepreneurs of the Year". Congratulations to Dustin, Sidney, and Alex. They each had an entrepreneurial attitude throughout their journey alongside their peers. Each week in CEO, they were asking questions, eager to meet guests who visited the class, and when given an expectation would exceed what was expected. 

It was a wonderful evening showcasing all of the student's personal businesses.  This year demonstrated so many creative and well thought out business plans. Everything that the CEO Journey processed over the past eight months provides the Trade Show with so much energy. We wish the CEO Class of 2017 continued success in all their future endeavors.


CEO Investor Breakfast Was Well Attended

Special Recognition given to CEO Founding Investors

The attendance at the CEO Investor Breakfast was outstanding despite the heavy rain. The Firefly Grill prepared a delicious breakfast and the networking between students and investors at the end of their CEO Journey was the perfect last chapter.

Steve Witges, CEO Chairman presented 36 CEO Founder Investors with appreciation awards for their 10 year investment into the Effingham County program. He also honored Kent Probst, retiring CEO Facilitator, with a Crystal Award recongnizing his years of dedication in building the next generation of business leaders for Effingham County.

This breakfast event also allows the students to share their personal journey and to say thank you to our investors. Many of the investors commented that hearing the personal stories and meeting the students provides evidence that their investment is impacting our future with strong business leaders for our county. A big thank you goes out to Niall Campbell and his team in making our morning so special. 


Last Day of CEO (Cincinnati Reds Stadium Tour)


Student Journal Highlights for this week

"Being the last journal, I thought I would add some thoughts about the entirety of CEO. CEO has without a doubt created an impact on me in various ways. This impact is able to be felt every day when I go to school or am in public talking with adults. I feel as though CEO has prepared me to excel in college or anything else that I will do. I have made some new friends and countless connections and I gained some new mentors. I have been exposed to aspects of life and business that I probably would not have until much later. I really enjoyed CEO and I will remember its lessons and experiences forever."

Jacob Crow

Jacob Crow
Wednesday, May 10, 2017Learn More About Jacob

"CEO was such a beneficial class for me. I loved every minute of it. There were times that I was definitely pushed outside my comfort zone, but that’s how you grow and learn more about yourself. I really wish this class could continue for another year with all the same students, but I know that one day all the students will be able to interact again as community leaders! Thank you for this amazing opportunity and for impacting my life in such a positive way, and I hope to continue the relationships that I have made in this class! “Once a CEO student, always a CEO student” is my only motivation to finish the rest of my senior year."

Jacob Bushue

Jacob Bushue
Wednesday, May 10, 2017Learn More About Jacob

"And just like that I am writing my last weekly CEO journal. At the beginning of the year, I could not imagine how quickly this program would have gone. I have learned so much over the past eight months that has given me such a great foundation for my adult life. Whether it is learning different business concepts, practicing communication skills, or discovering how amazing my county is, this program has given me so much. I don’t think I understand yet how much I have received in this year. I believe that in the next few years, and as I start my career, I will have CEO to thank for such an incredible set of skills. While this year wasn’t all rainbows and butterflies, I am so happy that I decided to apply for this program last spring. I could not imagine a better way to spend senior year."

"Man, I sure will miss CEO. Cincy was just a great day to spend time with a few CEO friends before not ever having CEO again. I was really impressed with the stadium. I was interesting to compare it to the other baseball parks I have visited. We listened to the presenters for quite some time, but I personally found it really interesting. Especially when the Digital Media manager spoke. I could see myself in a career like hers. It was a long day, but a great one! Like I said, I am going to miss CEO greatly, but I cannot wait to see where the next chapter of my life takes me. I am ready to take the tools I have gained through the program and utilize them elsewhere.  CEO is an unforgettable experience."


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The manner in which the CEO program is funded is critical to its success and sustainability. All funds raised are used exclusively for the Effingham County CEO Program. To participate, a 3-year $1000 per year commitment is required. Business Partner Investors commitments of time and energy are also critical to the program's success. Contributions may be tax deductible, as our organization is a 501(c)(3) not for profit organization.

Click here to download the Effingham CEO Pledge Card

When we are not touring local businesses, we need a place to host the class. During that time, the 40 CEO students and their Facilitator would meet at your site where they would also have guest speakers and guests from the community attend. Hosting requires a facility with internet access and adequately accommodates up to 45 people.

We are looking for people to share real-life stories about the concepts of running a business, from strategic thinking, product development to marketing, and cash flow management. Also, sharing your personal successes and failures are what recent classes have enjoyed the most.


If you are interested in participating in any of the above programs, use our contact form to send us a message


Jacob Guy - Effingham County CEO

Jacob Guy

About Me

Jacob Guy attends St. Anthony High School. He plays both fall and spring varsity baseball for and is an active member of his church youth group. Other extracurriculars at school include being the secretary of science club, and a member of history club, and Catholic Athletes for Christ. He likes volunteering at Catholic Charities and baseball camps. In the summer he works at Effingham Asphalt. In his free time he enjoys spending time with his family and friends and enjoying the outdoors. After high school, he plans to study business at a four-year university and later attend law school.

“Through this class I hope to attain a skillset that will give me a headstart in the business world unlike any other class. I’m very excited to have the opportunity to expand my network and learn as much as I can from the many successful business owners in our community.”


Learn More about Jacob

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