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The CEO Class of 2019 Begins August 21st


CEO Orientation for Incoming 2019 CEO Class

Steve Witges, Karen Etter, & Bill Fritcher

On April 25th, the CEO Board addressed the incoming 2019 CEO Class at Heartland Dental’s training room. They were welcomed by Steve Witges, Board Chair where he shared the history and the importance of the CEO culture. Karen Etter then emphasized the dress code and why this is so important when making first impressions. Bill Fritcher also discussed travel expectations and keeping the various school administrators informed throughout the year.

As you know the program is funded by community business owners and individuals as the main stake holders. This year Wanda Pitcher, owner of Tuscan Hills Winery, provided her personal testimony as a parent of an alumni, mentor, ambassador, and investor in the program. It was beneficial that the incoming students have an understanding that the community is investing in their future and care about the results of their journey.

Also, it was wonderful to have Megan Hodge and Truman Rhodes speak on their recent experience from the 2018 CEO Class and CEO Alumni Braydan Bushue on how CEO prepared him for college and life. They could give a personal testimony that we are sure left a big impression on the incoming 2019 class and their parents.

The class was given a summer assignment to read Craig Lindvahl's book Things You Wish You Knew Yesterday, How to Wins Friends and Influence People- Dale Carnegie, QBQ Question Behind the Question- John G. Miller and a few more if they wish to start strong in CEO. A new handbook was also handed out to both parents and students this year, so everyone is aware of the expectations needed to succeed in this experience. 

It is with much anticipation that the CEO Family looks forward to welcoming the following students this Fall into the class:

Jacob Blanchette

Mikayla Blankenship

Kaitlyn Bloemer

Alexander Brandenburger

Nathan Budde

Megan Bushue

Nicole Deters

Ansh Dogra

Dylan Guy

Liam Hammer

Abby Hartke

Caralee  Hayes

Colby Heaton

Rachel Higgs

Keira Hirtzel

Elizabeth  Kelly

Donovan Kitten

Colin Koester

August Laatsch

Luke Ludwig

Ethan McWhorter

Sophia Moore

Allie Niebrugge

Julia Schmid

Grant Schmidt

Nathan Schultz

Joseph Siemer

Abby Stock

Andres Trevino

Hayden Voelker

Jenelle Vogt

Bryson  Wall

Becca Webster

Madison Westendorf

Elizabeth Will

Anthony Zaccari


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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.

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    When we are not touring local businesses, we need a place to host the class. During that time, the 0 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 5 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.


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