Category Archives: Connecting Thought Leaders with Socially Responsible Organizations and Communities

Social and Professional, Creative idea-Exchange

Join Melissa G Wilson and Four Great Authors for an Invigorating Evening with the Written Word!

When: Wednesday, October 15th, 5:30 – 8:00 p.m.

Where: Space (a most unique connection space!) 444 N Wabash, Chicago, IL, 5th floor

Have you been longing for a fun, more connective way of meeting new people?

Do you like to learn new things in a warm, inviting social setting?

Are you ready for a very unique, interactive experience?

Then you will want attend this first of its kind authors roundtable adventure.

What to Expect

  • You will start by arriving at 5:30 where you will meet me as one of your hosts as well as other hosts who will introduce you around the room to others attending as well as the authors.
  • At 6:00 p.m. We will have a brief introduction to the authors and their tables of conversation around each of their books.
  • At 6:30 you will choose your first table to sit down at. Note that once a table is full you will have to go to one that has openings. At your table you will get the chance to not only listen to the author’s overview of his or her subject but also get to meet the other participants at your table and exchange ideas and ask questions to create great, stimulating conversation.
  • At 7:00 you will again switch to another table of your choice and, once again, meet new people and have create a great exchange of ideas.
  • At 7:30 you will have your third and final opportunity to sit down and converse with an author.
  • From 7:30 – 8:00 we will have an open room conversation sharing the insights and highlights from the authors and you and the other participants.
Note: This event is not just for other writers or people who want to be authors. It’s a social and professional, creative idea-exchange. My goal is to provide an environment where you can experience what I hope will be a more rich and beneficial way to connect to other.
Did I Hear Food and Wine?
We will have a nice amount of both red and white wines as well as water. However, if you wish to drink something else feel free to BYOB (eg your own fun wine or beer to share).
Food? We will have tasty and healthy food (and some sweets) to hopefully satisfy your hunger. It won’t be a heavy dinner but one that we think will be sufficient. Again, if you wish to bring something for yourself that would be just fine and/or something to share.
Anyone who knows me knows that I am about paying it forward and giving back. So, with this in mind half of the money made this evening will go to a very worthy cause called A Silver Lining Foundation. This organization ensures dignified, respectful and equal access to quality cancer education and services for all and is located right here in Chicago.
Our Great Roster of Authors

Craig S Wilson, Author of Dating for Life (

John St. Augustine, Author of Notes from the North, Living an Uncommon Life and Every Moment Matter (www.johnstaugustine)
Dan Tepke, Author of Hatching Your Million Dollar Business (
Dan Weinfurter, Author of Second Stage Entrepreneurship (
Mike Klein, Author of Million Dollar Sales Conversations (
What’s Next?
We hope to make this a regular event so let us know what you would recommend to make it even better once you have had the opportunity to experience it!
Maestro of the Event
Melissa G Wilson, Author of Networlding and 15 other books on leadership, networking, social media and publishing (
FINAL NOTE! – Only a few seats available for the optimum connective experience!


DIVVY Bike Sharing Program for Chicago Launches in June

When I was Paris  France a couple years ago, I thought their  bike rental program was pretty cool, with rental stations all over the city. 

Now, Chicago launches DIVVY bike sharing program , that will allow people to use bikes for $75 a year!

Divvy is expected to launch downtown around Bike to Work Day on June 14, with about 75 stations.
  By 2014, they want to have 400  stations all over the city. 

Now dubbed “Divvy” to reflect the nature of bike sharing, the program is launching more than 28 kiosks
where Lake View neighbors can pick up bicycles. The new cycles will
also be painted the iconic “Chicago Blue” to “provide a high level of
visibility on the street,” Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel said. 
How cool is that?!

Chicago Low Wage Workers STRIKE Today

EARLIER THIS MONTH  lower wage workers in New York City striked – today, it was Chicago’s turn.  Workers at McDonalds, Macy’s, Sear’s, Victoria Secrets  and Subway took to the picket lines!

WAGES IN OUR COUNTRY truly do suck! And I for one am happy to see people fighting back. It is almost impossible to find a job for $10-$15. And event at $15 an hour, that is barely a livable wage. 

Hundreds of employees from stores
 walked off the job today in Chicago for higher wages, three
weeks after a similar strike by fast-food workers in New York.

The employees marched in the Chicago Loop and near the
Magnificent Mile shopping area, calling for $15-an-hour pay,
82 percent more than the state’s minimum wage, and the right to
form a union without intimidation. The one-day strike was
arranged by the Workers Organizing Committee of Chicago, a group
of retail and food workers, according to a statement yesterday. 

There are more than 2.9 million food preparation and
serving workers in the U.S., including those who work at fast-
food restaurants, according to a report by the Bureau of Labor
Statistics in May. The median wage for those workers is $8.78 an
hour, or about $18,260 a year, the data shows.  MOST BUSINESSES would only have raise the price of items by pennies, to make up for a better wage!
read more  

18 Day Lakefront Event Coming Summer 2013


        Chicago Uptown Lakefront Carnival
& Entertainment Festival

June 20th – July 7th,

From Lawrence to Wilson, from Lake
Shore Drive to Lake Michigan

18 days of fun for all ages


Food, Drinks, Amazing Carnival Rides

Music and Entertainment, Arts and Crafts and More!

  • There will be
    Police, Fire and Union Weeks, 
    bringing in thousands of families, friends and
    supporters in celebration of our City’s Heroes.
  • There will
    be 2 senior citizen areas, tented with games and entertainment, food and drink.
  • A HUGE Carnival with awesome state-of-the art rides and Midway of Games

Ten beer

Music:   A DJ / dance area

A children’s
stage and game area.  With clowns,
magicians and entertainment. Carnival area for kids with blow ups.

Food court
area with all kinds of  restaurants serving hot and cold food. 

Artisans; Arts
and Crafts displays and sales. 

There will
be a “Green” area with vendors showcasing local produce, health conscious and eco-friendly products and services.

An animal
rescue and vendor area at the Dog Beach. A special fund raising beer garden.

2 stages; A
major entertainment stage as well as an LGBT and multi-cultural stage, which
will feature music and entertainment from a diverse array of communities. 

FREE Pizza – Pizza for a Purpose with Home Run Inn

Home Run Inn (HRI), Chicago’s Premium Pizza, is proud to partner with The West Suburban Community Pantry for “Pizza for a Purpose.”  Help fight hunger on Friday, Dec. 14 from noon – 3 p.m. at HRI’s Corporate Headquarters located at 1300 Internationale Parkway in Woodridge, IL. 


Bring in any combination of 10,  pre-approved items listed and receive a FREE case of Home Run Inn Thrift  Pizzas valued at up to $45. Thrift pizzas have minor imperfections, but they are nutritionally correct.
Pre-approved combinations include: Hearty Soup (i.e. Progresso, Chunky,
etc.), Canned Chicken (i.e. white chicken, etc.), and Peanut Butter.
You also can purchase
a case or cases of Home Run Inn Thrift Pizza, and Home Run Inn will
donate all net proceeds to the West Suburban Community Pantry.



What: All pizza sales are full cases only (12 pizzas per case of the same variety).

·         6″  HRI Ultra Thin Thrift Pizzas* $20

·         6″  HRI Classic Thrift Pizzas*  $25

·         12″ HRI Ultra Thin Thrift Pizzas* $35

·         12″ HRI Classic/Signature Thrift Pizzas* $45

·         12” HRI Ultra Thick Thrift Pizzas* (10 per case) – $45

·         12” HRI Bulk Pack Pizzas** – $60


*Up to a $45 value.  CASH ONLY.  No checks or credit cards will be accepted. No presales.  Tax included.

supplies last.  Varieties/supplies are limited.  Limit 2 Free Cases of
Pizza per customer.  HRI reserves the right to change the date of this
promotion due to inclement weather. 



With the vision for a community without hunger, the West Suburban Community Pantry
offers food for the hungry and resources to empower persons to improve
their quality of life. They have fed nearly 45,000 duplicated persons,
including nearly 19,000 children and over 3,000 senior citizens in 2012.
Unduplicated numbers were nearly 10,000 persons including over 4,000
children and over 500- senior citizens.



Home Run Inn
is considered Chicago’s very own. The traditional style, all natural
pizza is recognized for its irresistible flavor, featuring a hand-pinched buttery crust, tasty sauce, plentiful cheese and homemade sausage. Family-owned and operated, Home Run Inn
is the number one selling frozen pizza brand in the Chicagoland area.
Produced at its own manufacturing facilities and distributed through its
partnership with Jay Williams of Power Play Distributors, the
quality-controlled pizza company has expanded to stores in over 28


With its loyal Chicago customers in mind, Home Run Inn
continues to serve their favorite pizza and other specialties at nine
locations: two in Chicago; Addison; Bolingbrook; Darien; Melrose Park;
Westmont; Hillside; and Beverly, IL.  For further information, visit or call 630-783-9696. For up to the minute news, join on Twitter and Facebook.

Leadership in New Orleans – Brad Pitt Helps Make It Right

Last night, while watching IDOL GIVES BACK, they highlighted several great programs that are happening around the world. Programs that started really out of frustration for lack of government concern.  Everyday people and celebrities are now taking leadership roles with idea’s that can and will  make a difference.

As we know, Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans. The slow reaction to the initial emergency and to the ongoing crisis exposed troubling realities about the response capabilities of the American government when the citizens of our most culturally diverse city were in desperate need of help.

When Brad Pitt visited the Lower 9th Ward for the first time after the storm, he was shocked by what he saw: the remnants of people’s lives strewn across the streets and an entire neighborhood torn apart and turned upside down. Pitt was even more disturbed by the lack of a clear plan to address the situation. Many were quietly saying there was no chance the Lower 9th Ward would ever be re-built.

Inspired by the courage and hope of the residents he met, Pitt resolved to do whatever he could to help them rebuild. Just as importantly, he wanted to help recreate and nurture the unique culture and spirit of the Lower 9th Ward, which symbolizes the soul of New Orleans. He understood instinctively that a New Orleans rebuilt without the Lower 9th Ward would never be whole. MAKE IT RIGHT was  born.

He began by working with Global Green to sponsor an architecture competition aimed at generating ideas about how to rebuild sustainably. Pitt worked with local community leaders as well as experts from around the world to develop viable ideas for the Lower 9th Ward. That successful project inspired Pitt’s new focus: Make It Right.

The Mission of Make It Right is clear: It is to be a catalyst for redevelopment of the Lower 9th Ward, by building a neighborhood comprised of safe and healthy homes that are inspired by Cradle to Cradle thinking, with an emphasis on a high quality of design, while preserving the spirit of the community’s culture. The goal is to accomplish this quickly, so that the first residents can begin returning to their homes as soon as possible.

Without Pitt’s dedication and concern – this would NOT be happening. In all likelihood, government officials would be standing around bickering about what to do.

Idol Gives Back Foundation is a new not-for-profit organization established by the producers of American Idol and FOX to raise money and awareness for children and families living in poverty and at risk in the U.S. and abroad. Idol Gives Back Foundation is harnessing American Idol’s ability to capture America’s hearts and the power of entertainment to benefit some of the poorest and most vulnerable people in the world.

Groups like this and  ONE, are going to change the world. WE CAN make a difference!

brad pitt idol gives back make it right hurricane katrina one Turbo Tagger


i.c.stars executes on its mission by providing IT career programs and services that strengthen the leadership potential of inner city young adults in Chicago.
i.c.stars offerings focus on providing social and economic value to participants, communities and industries.

7 years ago, i.c.stars began it’s first training Cycle amidst the dot com boom. Slowly, the industry took a turn.
However, today, i.c.stars is still training future technology and community leaders!

Tucked inconspicuously inside a trendy Chicago loft in the upscale River North district, known for its art galleries, chic restaurants and tech startups, i.c.stars is a three-month boot camp designed to develop computer programming skills, business savvy and leadership. – Writer Michael Bitoun Blecher did a great article about ic stars for Graduatingengineer.

Volunteers are always needed!

leadership chicago chicago leadership i c stars Turbo Tagger

XO Laptop: Giving every child in the world access to Social Media

MIT Professor Nicholas Negroponte experienced first-hand how connected laptops transformed the lives of children and their families in a remote Cambodian village. A seed was planted: If every child in the world had access to a computer, what potential could be unlocked? What problems could be solved? These questions eventually led to the foundation of One Laptop per Child, and the creation of the XO laptop.

OLPC’s mission is to provide a means for learning, self-expression, and exploration to the nearly two billion children of the developing world with little or no access to education. While children are by nature eager for knowledge, many countries have insufficient resources to devote to education—sometimes less than $20 per year per child (compared to an average of $7,500 in the United States). By giving children their very own connected XO laptop, we are giving them a window to the outside world, access to vast amounts of information, a way to connect with each other, and a springboard into their future. And we’re also helping these countries develop an essential resource—educated, empowered children.


For more information visit! give one get one Negroponte Turbo Tagger

Discovery Acquires Treehugger Site

Discovery fits these criteria to a T.”

* They reach 1.5 billion (yes, billion!) cumulative subscribers around the world with top quality, often nature related non-fiction content

* They have commitment from the top of the company for over $50M to create content including programming for the world’s first 24 hr green channel and in addition have allocated significant budget aimed at building the leading green web portfolio on the Internet

* They already have web properties serving hundreds of millions of pageviews per month

* They are looking to the TreeHugger team to help drive the direction of their green efforts online

“By teaming up with Discovery, we believe we can more effectively play a critical role in this mission.”

Discovery Treehugger Green Turbo Tagger

Michael Moore, Sicko and My Aetna Blues

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