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White County CEO Students Preview Annual Trade Show; Recap Year at Kiwanis Thursday

The 8th year White County CEO Class is finalizing preparations for the annual Trade Show.  Half of them attended the Carmi Kiwanis Club’s weekly meeting to talk about their experience in the program, answer questions, and talk a little about their individual businesses.  Class Facilitator Tracy Orr set the stage.

April 29th, and it’s at the floral hall this year.  It’s from 5-7pm and if you’ve never been, it’s quite an experience.  All 18 of these guys will have their own booth set up to figure out how to advertise, how to get you into their booth, how to sell to you, how to decorate, all those things to present their product in the best way that they can.

A handful of what you can expect to see at this year’s trade show…

My name is Kadie Simmons and I’m the owner of Step of Faith which sells a faith-based crewneck and fun printed, comfortable crew socks.

I’m Annaleise Shorb and I’m the owner of Easy Listening Conversation Cards, where I sell cards for friends, relationships, or youth group settings that help alleviate the fears and struggles with social anxiety.

I’m Brook Hineman and I’m the owner of Fruitful where we make jams, jellies, and preserves in all kinds of flavors.  There’s traditional and non traditional flavors and they go great on different breakfast foods and desserts.

I’m Joseph Gates, owner of Gates Ministries where I’ll be selling devotional books written by different members of the community.

I’m Briley Burchfield and I’m the owner of Bloom Boutique.  Bloom Boutique creates and sells hand painted flower pots; also flower seed giving cards, cacti, succulents, and flower related stickers.  There will be a few selections of flower pots at the 103.  You can find me on facebook and Instagram, and at the trade show.

My name is Maggie Gross and I’m the owner of Just In Case Sublimation Solutions. I design phone cases, air pod cases, and card holders that can be customized for the customer.

Students were then peppered with questions from the audience ranging from “how do you manage inventory and overhead?” to “how are you advertising your business?”.  When asked about the most surprising thing they learned throughout the year, class CEO Maggie Gross said it was how business leaders arrived at their career.

Probably like the path that people have taken to get to the job they’re in.  Because they tell us their life story starting at high school or college, so many people you think ‘oh they work here, so they probably went to college and started working there’ but no some of them even went through like three different job types, I think someone went from a nurse to working in marketing.  So that was surprising seeing the path that so many people have taken to get where they are.

The White County CEO program has already seen dividends paid here at home.  Gaetano Dimaggio’s class business Gae Sticks have become a staple, popular item at his family’s restaurant.  Another former class leader, Emmy (Pruitt) Williams launched the Norris City Chamber of Commerce and is now the owner of her own company, WP Meat Co.  Regardless of whether the young entrepreneurs become business owners later in life, the program provides invaluable, irreplicable experiences that serve them well into adulthood.

Students were also asked to give advice to the next generation’s leaders as Mrs. Lacey Moore had the 3rd Quarter 3rd Grade Most Valuable Bulldogs in attendance.

Cabella Emery, Owen Lingafelter, Axel Beasley, Felle Esteban, and Trace Flowers were recognized for their excellent behavior, solid decision making skills, kindness, and exemplary pattern of being good students.

In club business, Past President Emily Williams recapped the Kiwans Daddy/Daughter Dance held on Saturday.  She called it a stirring success with more than 60 dads and 80 daughters in attendance.  Daughters ranged in age from a year old to in their 30s and more than 250 picture memories were snapped during the event.  The event was also financially prudent producing a $1,200 profit which will in turn go right back into the community mainly aimed at helping youth in the community.


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