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December 2016

February 22nd
Jeff Reed  Ariel Premium Supply, Inc.

Sam Reed  Pacesetter Awards

12:30pm TBD
1:15pm TBD



Register to attend!



Jen Mendoza
Executive Director
:: 630-983-7722
New Directors Join PPAChicago Board
Promotional Professionals Association of Chicago (PPAChicago) has welcomed Ben Turry of Leader Promotions, Dawn Ruler of Geiger, and Matt Staff of Logomark, Inc. to its board of directors, effective January 1, 2017. In addition, Matt Gallegos of Staples, Colleen Krause of Summit Group, and Bob Notter return for a second term.
The incoming board joined the current PPAChicago Board for a day of strategic planning on November 18 in Oak Brook. The meeting was facilitated by PPAI Member Engagement & Regional Relations Carol Gauger. Gauger led the group through extensive analysis underlining the association's strengths, revealing areas of opportunity and setting goals for the year ahead.
"PPAChicago has always been fortunate with a wealth of knowledge and experience from our volunteer board members," says Matt Gallegos, 2017 board president. "With the addition of our newest directors, I am fully confident that we have all the right people and tools in place to better our association far past where it has been. That statement in it of itself is  very bold, but with the mixture of newer younger board members, and some of our more experienced industry professionals,  I don't see how it can go any other way."

PPAChicago 2017 Board: Director Matt Staff , Executive Director Jen Mendoza, PPAI Staff Carol Gauger, Outgoing President Kamil Dys, Vice President Colleen Krause, President Matt Gallegos, Director Ben Turry, Director Melissa Kopf and  Secretary Jason Emery. (not pictured; Treasurer Bob Notter & Director Dawn Ruler)

2017 Supplier Registration

Don't miss your chance to register for the largest Client Show in the Midwest! 
March 9, 2017
 Bringing in over 1,500 qualified Distributors and Clients, together in one place, this is one show you cannot afford to miss.

Winter Fest Fun !

Thank you to all of our members, board, volunteers, sponsors and scholarship winners for making this year's Winter Fest loads of fun! This year's Winter Fest was held on November 10th at Five Rose's Irish Pub in Rosemont.

Thank you so much for your continued board service over the years and as 2016 President Kamil Dys. We hope enjoy your personalized putter and think of PPAChicago with every swing!

Congratulations and a big round of applause to  the 2017 PPAChicago Continuing Education Scholarship winners;  Becky Webel of E xceptional Specialty P romotions, Inc., Lori Dobrez of Gemline, and Sandra Lumpkin of West Suburban Showcase!

Also, a big thank you for our awesome hats donated by KC Caps!
Congratulations to our raffle winners Brenda Sheridan walking away with the Cubs Jersey and Sam Reed winning our Apple Watch.

We're pleased and excited for 2017 as we'll be celebrating our 60th anniversary. If you haven't been as involved as you'd like in past years, 2017 is the definitely the year to start!
[2016 PPAChicago Director; Ben Prasad, Executive Director; Jen Mendoza, Treasurer; Bob Notter, Director; Melissa Kopf, President; Kamil Dys, Vice President; Matt Gallegos, Secretary; Colleen Krause, and Director; Jason Emery]

Supplier Member Call for
2017 Lunch & Learn Spots!

These are the available dates and times to present: 

  Wednesday, February 22: 12:30pm & 1:15pm
 Wednesday, April 19: 11:00am, 11:45am, 12:30pm & 1:15pm 
 Wednesday, June 21: 11:00am, 11:45am, 12:30pm & 1:15pm 
Wednesday, August 23: 11:00am, 11:45am, 12:30pm & 1:15pm 
 Wednesday, September 27: 11:00am, 11:45am, 12:30pm & 

If you would like to book a date and time please email Jen at today.
Spaces fill up quick!
2016 Leadership Development Workshop

This year at PPAI's Leadership Development Workship (LDW), in Dallas, TX,   PPAChicago was represented by Executive Director Jen Mendoza, incoming Vice President Colleen Krause,  RAC Delegate Jennifer Savor and President Matt Gallegos.  The group spent two full days  training and brainstorming on new ideas in which to better the association and its membership.

PPAChicago's Executive Director Jen Mendoza was asked to present an Ignite Speech, at the opening dinner, showcasing the association's 2016 Promotional Products Work! Week (PPW!W) strategy and successes. PPAChicago won 2nd place in this year's regional challenge out of 27 regionals.

Mrs. Mendoza was also asked to be an advocate in the PPAI's new initiative SPARK lead by PPAI's Diversity Development Manager Seth Barnett.
SPARK events provide opportunities for young professionals to become educated and engaged with topics that are specific to the promotional products industry and the beginning stage of a successful career.

If interested in becoming more familiar with the group, please contact Jody Mello at

Register  to attend the first SPARK event here:   SPARK @ Expo: Empowering Future Leaders

PPAChicago 2017 ZOOMcatalog Coupon Request 

As a supplier member of PPAChicago you are invited to participate in the Regional Association Digital Coupon Book program  for 2017. This is a no-charge opportunity for you to gain exposure among thousands of distributor companies across the country and help them do more business with you.
Deadline to submit: December 16th, 2017
DOL Final Overtime Rule Delayed

On November 22, 2016, a federal judge temporarily blocked the Department of Labor from implementing and enforcing a final rule that would have raised the minimum salary required to be classified as exempt from overtime under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). This means the rule has been delayed and will not go into effect on December 1, 2016 as expected. 

What you need to know:
Employers that haven't made any changes can use this time to review their workforce under current FLSA requirements and determine what actions to take in case the rule does become effective at a later date. If you already made or communicated a change, it may be difficult to reverse that change. Consider consulting legal counsel for additional guidance. 
PPAChicago Treasurer Bob Notter of alphabroder represented the industry at this year's L.E.A.D. When news surfaced of this his response was, "This is the #1 thing we fought for at LEAD. This is great news for small businesses!"


San Diego, CA - Terry Town, the industry's most admired supplier of Towels, Blanket & Robes, has intensified their sales coverage in the Midwest with the hiring of Chris Sinatra. He will represent Terry Town in the states of Illinois and Wisconsin.
"The growth potential is so high in this region", began VP Sales Michael Del Bucchia. "With the expansion of our blanket line and the strength of our Sublimation program on both towels and blankets, we have year round assets these distributors need to be made aware of. Having a locally-based sales presence will expedite the infiltration of these markets into something great for Terry Town".
Terry Town is a supplier of Towels, Blankets, Robes and other related items, based in San Diego, CA. The company continues to rapidly rise in influence within their product categories, mostly though strict adherence to quality, product innovation, safety & compliance and customer service. Since being the first supplier company to introduce edge to edge sublimation print to the towel and blanket categories back in 2010, Terry Town has continued to expand the horizons of the promotional distributors of how these items are presented into the corporate marketplace.