New chamber president, executive director in Jefferson Park

The Jefferson Park Chamber of Commerce will become a small business development center that helps local businesses increase their client base and answers questions about obtaining permits and licenses, according to new chamber president Lionel Rabb.

“It’s about filling seats in your business,” Rabb said at the chamber’s Nov. 13 membership meeting. Rabb, who is owner of Catalyst Group Global, also serves as president of the Jefferson Park Memorial Advisory Council and is one of the founders of the Ed Paschke Art Center, 5415 W. Higgins Ave.

At the meeting, Rabb introduced new chamber executive director Amie Zander, who has 10 years experience at the same post with the West Ridge Chamber. Former Jefferson Park Chamber executive director Anne Kamykowski recently resigned to take a position with another non-profit agency.

At West Ridge, Zander increased the number of members from six to about 200 and started a Special Service Area, Rabb said. An SSA is a local taxing body that funds improvements in the commercial area.

“We’re here to help your business grow,” said Zander, a lifelong Jefferson Park resident who attended Saint Pascal School and Resurrection High School.

The chamber’s monthly general meetings are open to the public and usually are held at 8:15 a.m. the second Thursday of the month at the Gale Street Inn, 4914 N. Milwaukee Ave.

The chamber can be reached at 773-736-6697 and The chamber plans to launch a new Web site early next year.

2014-15 Jefferson Park Chamber Board of Directors and Officers:

  • Lionel Rabb, President
  • Brian Nadig, Co-Vice President
  • George Karzas, Co-Vice President
  • Juan Aramburu, Secretary
  • Dr. Cesar Lau, Treasurer
  • Gregg Kobelinski, Chairman
  • Amie Zander, Executive Director
  • Dave Myer, Director
  • Susan Jablonski, Director
  • Mary Beth Gerlach, Director
  • Shanna Karamaniolas, Director
  • Jeff Merritt, Director
  • Frank Suerth, Director
  • Jeff Morris, Director
  • Nick Black, Director
  • Larry Fisher, Director
  • John Garrido, Director
  • Bruce Barnes, Director
  • Judy Skotzko, Director
  • Alex Perry, Director
  • Dobra Bielinski, Director

Honorary Board Members:

  • Alderman John Arena (45th)
  • Dr. Cory Chen
  • Ralph Carstensen
  • Alderman Timothy Cullerton (38th)