Chicago, IL-February 24, 2010 – Bill Kurtis, well-known media personality, newsman and business owner, will be the featured speaker at the 83rd Annual Dinner Meeting of the Better Business Bureau serving Chicago & Northern Illinois (BBB) on Wednesday, March 10 at the Sheraton Chicago Hotel & Towers.
Bill Kurtis will speak on the importance of an ethical marketplace where buyers and sellers can trust each other using examples from his news reporting and business background. In addition, he will discuss the BBB mission and the fact that ethical business actions are good for business especially in today’s economic climate.
“It’s really an honor for the BBB to have Bill Kurtis speak on ethics in today’s society at our Annual Dinner Meeting,” said Steve J. Bernas, president & CEO of the Better Business Bureau serving Chicago and Northern Illinois. “Kurtis is well-known to Chicago area TV viewers for his long-running news anchor duties with Walter Jacobsen at WBBM-TV, as well as his work at the CBS network and on the A&E channel. What aren’t as well known are his business ventures. This combination makes him uniquely suited to speak on the topic of business operations and ethics.”
The 83rd Annual Meeting of the BBB will be emceed by Allison Rosati and Rob Stafford, NBC 5 Chicago News Anchors with the dinner followed by the awarding of the coveted Torchbearer of the Year Award to Allen Rodriguez, a Senior Vice President at Charter One and valued member of the BBB Board of Directors. This award is presented annually by the BBB to recognize the efforts of an individual business leader in our community.
“We are especially appreciative, not only of the excellent work Allen has done for the BBB during the past several years, but also for the gracious support of Charter One as the presenting sponsor for our annual meeting,” noted Bernas.
Several other award presentations will be made on March 10th, including the Diogenes Award for Excellence in Media to Pam Zekman to honor her exceptional work on CBS TV Chicago which helps to educate consumers in our community.
Bernas said: “Pam Zekman is a Pulitzer-prize winning reporter serves on CBS 2 Chicago's investigative team, a position she has held since 1981. For almost 30 years, her thorough investigations have resulted in benefits to consumers, in governmental reforms and in criminal indictments. Through these years the BBB has been proud to assist Pam in her efforts.”
Also recognized at the meeting will be Assata N. Peterson as Better Business Bureau Arbitrator of the Year for the BBB. Peterson’s efforts include accomplishing more than 35 arbitrations helping companies and consumers come to amicable agreements without legal costs and issues, in difficult cases.
Two Special Membership Awards will be presented; the Chicago Automobile Trade Association and American Sale will be recognized for their years of Accreditation and upholding the highest standards in business practices in the community.
For the first time, the BBB is presenting a new award, the James E. Baumhart Lifetime Achievement Award, to Jerry H. Cizek III, retired president and general manager of the Chicago Auto Show and the Chicago Automobile Trade Association. This award is named for the BBB’s past president Jim Baumhart who dedicated 43 years of service to the BBB, consumers and businesses.
The 83rd Annual BBB Dinner Meeting is made possible through the generous support of presenting sponsor Charter One.
As a private, non-profit organization, the purpose of the Better Business Bureau is to promote an ethical marketplace. BBBs help resolve buyer/seller complaints by means of conciliation, mediation and arbitration. BBBs also review advertising claims, online business practices and charitable organizations. BBBs develop and issue reports on businesses and nonprofit organizations and encourage people to check out a company or charity before making a purchase or donation.