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Sept. 16, 20135:00 a.m.
WICHITA — Last year, Have You Heard? reported that Peterson Publications no longer would produce the Kansas Official Visitors Guide, much to the disappointment of the Topeka-based company’s president, Jeff Peterson.
Now, the company is no longer going to produce the Go Wichita visitors guide, but Peterson says that was his choice.
“We’re just reorganizing some of the things that we are doing here,” he says. “This was really strictly a business decision.”
Peterson says he hopes the convention and visitors bureau would hire a local company to do the work.
“With the Wichita guide, it really takes … going and seeing a lot of the smaller businesses there. We’re not right in Wichita, so it was quite a bit of travel for our sales manager.”
Peterson says it may have been different if the company still was producing the state guide.
Go Wichita has hired Arizona-based Madden Media, which also produces the state guide.
“They did excellent work with the state, so we included them in the opportunity to bid,” says Go Wichita spokesman James Williams.
Aug. 21, 20133:36 p.m.
“I know you are all wondering if that beautiful new red car parked over there is a door prize. It’s not. It’s the speaker’s gift.”
May 1, 20132:54 p.m.
WICHITA — For the second time in less than a year, GLMV Architecture has laid off employees.
In August, the cutbacks affected a half dozen employees. This time, it’s about a dozen. Some employees also will now be working reduced hours.
“Nobody saw this coming,” says one laid-off worker. “Everybody’s so shocked.”
Neither Chairman Bill Livingston nor CEO Jeff Van Sickle returned calls for comment.
Sources say that in some ways, the company seems to have had more work lately. The issue may be that some of GLMV’s clients have had difficult first quarters.
The layoffs affected GLMV’s Wichita, Kansas City and Houston offices.
In January 2010, Gossen Livingston merged with McCluggage Van Sickle and Perry. In 2012, GLMV moved into a prominent new home in the Douglas Design District at 1525 E. Douglas.
The Wichita Metro Chamber of Commerce recently awarded GLMV the Keeper of the Plains award during its annual Honors Night for the firm’s work restoring the 30,000-square-foot 1930 building that originally was home to J. Arch Butts’ Packard dealership.
“If you have two of the longest firms in Wichita merge (and) they just won an award for a building, and now you’re laying off another round … it doesn’t add up,” one former employee says.
“That plus the last round is a pretty big hit.”
Jan. 3, 20137:32 a.m.
Michael Monteferrante, the turnaround specialist who first came to Wichita in 2003 as CEO of Optima Bus, is returning as the new president and CEO of Envision.
“It’s a nonprofit, and we didn’t know if someone with as entrepreneurial spirit as Michael has would want to make the leap to the nonprofit world,” says Sam Williams, chairman of Envision’s board.
“This opportunity I’m looking at completely different than I have at previous opportunities of employment,” Monteferrante says. “I can’t be more excited than to take all the things I’ve learned over the years and apply it to a company that helps people.”
In addition to serving the blind and low-vision community through services and education, Envision is the second-largest employer of blind and low-vision people nationally. Envision Industries has a number of production and distribution divisions.
“I’ve always been extremely passionate about the mission of Envision,” Monteferrante says.
He still remembers his first tour of the Envision plant on Water Street years ago.
“I could not tell who was blind and who wasn’t, and I just said, ‘Wow. I want to be a part of this. This is one of the most inspirational plant tours I’ve had.’”
Monteferrante sees bigger things for Envision, though.
“While it has grown – it’s grown tremendously over the years – I believe that the boundaries of growth for the mission of Envision … are endless,” he says. “I’ve always felt that the mission at Envision could be more than a Wichita-based, Kansas-based situation.”
Aug. 3, 20121:57 p.m.
UPDATED — Former U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates is going to be this year’s speaker at the Wichita Metro Chamber of Commerce’s annual meeting.
Gates, a Wichita native who has served under eight presidents, is likely to get a far friendlier reception in his hometown than another former defense secretary did.
The chamber invited Donald Rumsfeld to be its speaker in 2007 and then cancelled his appearance. That followed some criticism of his selection. The chamber never commented on why it cancelled or if ticket sales were slow.
This years tickets, which can be ordered here, range from $10 for general admission to $115 for dinner and reserved seating.
Nov. 4, 201111:06 a.m.
“For those of you who have read the book, thank you. For those of you who haven’t, there is ample inventory.”
— Former President George W. Bush, speaking at the Wichita Metro Chamber of Commerce’s annual meeting Thursday about his book, “Decision Points”
Oct. 28, 20113:38 p.m.
“The legislators, they’re like, ‘Send me to the orthodontist first,’ or, ‘Send me to the dentist without any painkillers.’ ”
— Gov. Sam Brownback, speaking Friday at a Wichita Metro Chamber of Commerce forum about the enthusiasm of Kansas legislators for the upcoming debate on school finance reform
Oct. 5, 20116:37 p.m.
“The early bird in this case gets the ticket.”
— Wichita Metro Chamber of Commerce chairman Lynn Nichols on how George W. Bush’s Nov. 3 talk at the chamber’s annual dinner sold out of 4,900 tickets (which is the first time in the event’s history, including when George H.W. Bush drew 4,000 people in 2005)
Aug. 11, 20112:03 p.m.
“It’s like a theme park for guys.”