South KC News / Member News

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  • 13 Sep 2013 11:25 AM | Vickie Wolgast (Administrator)
    Saint Luke's Health System (SLHS) announced this week it will consolidate its corporate offices into a single corporate headquarters, to be located at 901 E. 104th St. Kansas City, MO. 64131. This move will represent the first time in the history of the health system that all corporate functions will be located at a single site. 

    The new system headquarters will ultimately occupy over 120,000 square feet and will be home to more than 600 employees who now provide shared services to the ten hospitals and ancillary services groups that make up SLHS in the bi-state Kansas City region. SLHS currently employs more than 9,600 people in Missouri and Kansas. The multi-phased move will be timed to maximize efficiency and save costs with departments being relocated as current leases expire. The consolidation is expected to result in more than $5 million of lease costs savings over the next fifteen years.

    "This move provides tremendous benefit to the entire health system and the goals and objectives we have set to reduce cost and improve efficiency and collaboration," said Melinda L. Estes, M.D., president and CEO of SLHS. "Health care today requires all of us to be looking to streamline our processes, reduce waste, and enhance collaboration, productivity and communication. This move allows us to do all of those things and I personally am very excited about this next chapter in the history of Saint Luke's Health System."

    Approximately 325 employees, including SLHS executive leadership, will move in phase one, which will involve nearly 70,000 square feet of leased space. It is expected to begin in the first quarter of 2014. Departments to be consolidated at the new site include legal, finance and accounting, marketing and public relations, and materials management, among others. 

    "The decision to select this particular site was the result of a very deliberate and thoughtful process and we made our selection based on a set of very specific criteria," said Dr. Estes. "It was important to us to affirm our commitment to Kansas City and select an environment and workspace where we could create a true culture of collaboration and enhance our employees work experience."
  • 08 Mar 2013 11:41 AM | Vickie Wolgast (Administrator)

    The South Kansas City Chamber Board of Directors recently had a unanimous vote to support the passage of a $9 million no-tax-increase general obligation bond that the Grandview C-4 School District Board of Education has placed on the April 2, 2013 ballot.


    If the proposed bond issue is approved, funds will be used to continue the renovation and remodeling of existing school facilities. The projects initially proposed include such areas as safety and security enhancements, classroom renovations and improvements, restroom renovations, athletic and fine arts facility improvements, roof repairs/replacements, parking lot improvements and heating, ventilation and air conditioning improvements.The district’s facilities improvement team (consisting of district administration, staff, board members and community members) will review and prioritize the proposed projects.


    District voters approved a $7 million bond issue in 2011. These funds were utilized in 2012 to fund numerous projects throughout the district. There are some funds remaining, which will be used to support projects this summer. Voter approval of the $9 million no-tax-increase general obligation bond issue will allow the district to continue making improvements to district facilities. Additionally, the current economic climate is favorable for borrowing money.

  • 08 Feb 2013 1:41 PM | Vickie Wolgast (Administrator)

    The Chamber's 82nd Annual Dinner held on February 7, 2013 at the Armacost Car Museum featured a fun evening of great networking and food as well as the announcement of the 2013 Board of Directors and the presentation of the 2013-2017 Strategic Plan.

    The Strategic Plan includes three critical goals to be met over the next five years, plus the various committee goals for 2013.  The critical goals set by the Chamber include growing the Chamber by 400 members, adding additional staff and driving more revenues to our business members which would include creating a "Shop South KC" promotion among other things.  Click here to see the complete Strategic Plan.

    Outgoing Chairman of the Board, Rick Lavelock from Honeywell FM&T, recognized the following retiring board members for their service and dedication to the Chamber: Regina Taylor - Hickman Mills C-1 Schools, Jim Brandmeyer - Rosehill Gardens and Gianina Clark - National American University.  He also introduced the 2013 Chairman of the Board, Shelley Wales from DeVry University.

    Wales introduced new members of the board this year including Chuck Robinson - Rosehill Gardens, Kathleen Coleton - Heartland Yoga & Acupuncture and Stella Crewse - Morgan Miller Plumbing.  Returning board members include:

    • Paul Bookmeyer, Avila University (Chair Elect)
    • Aaron Dawson, UMB Bank (Treasurer)
    • Linda Smith, St. Joseph Medical Center (Secretary)
    • Rick Lavelock, Honeywell FM&T (Past Chair)
    • Rick Chambers, Center Education Foundation
    • Suzanne Forbes, Blue River Rehabilitation
    • Verdis Green, KCP&L
    • Kellie Johnston-Dorsey, City of Kansas City Missouri
    • L.J. Klein
    • Mark Long, Zimmer Real Estate Services
    • Shirley Phenix, Resources Management & Consulting
    • Kevin Rowe, iPlanTables
    • Kerry Triplett, Time Warner Cable
    • Jabbar Wesley, Missouri Gas Energy
  • 29 Jan 2013 3:32 PM | Vickie Wolgast (Administrator)

    The City of Kansas City, Mo., Special Committee on Small Business has worked with City staff, the City Council and the local small business community to successfully implement 62 of the 67 recommendations made by the committee one year ago.

    "This is remarkable progress considering there have been a variety of tasks to complete in such a short time," said Committee Chair and Councilman Scott Taylor. "The committee, working with small businesses and City staff, has been focused on getting results as quickly as possible."

    For example, the launch and success of the Justine PETERSEN microlending program through the Small Business Administration marks a key accomplishment for the committee. This microlending program provides access to capital for both start-up and existing small businesses and helps small businesses overcome barriers that may exist when seeking financing from mainstream institutions. 

    In July, the City Council added $110,000 from an old Tax Increment Finance project surplus to the loan loss reserve creating a total fund of nearly $1.5 million in loans for small businesses. This microlending program has also spurred other successful initiatives, including the KC Storefront Initiative, a veterans' microloan program and a Northeast-area business microloan program. 

    Other examples of recommendations recently implemented include:

    BuyLocalKC - The Buy Local KC campaign was launched in November 2012 in partnership with KCSourcelink, ChooseKC and Kansas City Metro Area Cash Mob. This campaign helps area small businesses connect with each other and encourages residents to shop locally.

    Customer Service Initiative - The committee announced several customer service initiatives that improve City staff customer service, including expanding the City's Secret Shopper program and permitting City employees to use eight hours of paid leave each year to participate in charitable activities through organizations connected with the City Charitable Campaign.

    Web enhancements - The KC BizCare Web page,,  has been linked to the City's homepage Business button, increasing Web page visits from 200-per-month to 4,000-per-month. The KCBizCare Web page has also been updated and features a new Resource Guide, helpful videos, a Twitter dialog box and more.

    Open Data Catalog - The City launched an Open Data Catalog concurrently with the release of the City's submitted budget in January 2013. This catalog, located at, will provide Kansas City entrepreneurs with data needed to develop new concepts to complement the City's high-tech community and the Google involvement in the community. 

    Resource Guide in Spanish - The KCBizCare Business Resource Guide is now available in Spanish. This translation and publication was a partnership between the City and the Hispanic Economic Development Corporation. City staff is now working on additional information bulletins and documents for translation.

    The remaining five items not completed are still in process and on schedule for implementation as soon as possible.

    For a complete listing of all of the Special Committee on Small Business's 67 initiatives, please visit

  • 06 Apr 2012 11:37 AM | Vickie Wolgast (Administrator)

    The National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) announced today that the federal agency is working with a small group of interested companies to further develop their approaches in support of potential reuse opportunities for the Bannister Federal Complex in south Kansas City.

    “We’re very excited about the level of interest we’ve had so far, and we look forward to future conversations with these companies about options for transferring the property to benefit our community,” said Mark Holecek, site manager for the NNSA’s Kansas City Site Office.

    In October 2011, the NNSA issued a Notice of Availability for the transfer, sale, or lease of its property at the Bannister Federal Complex. As a result, the NNSA received a substantial response from various companies, which included redevelopment plans that extended beyond the bounds of the NNSA property to include the GSA property. The current proposals include plans for the entire Complex, including NNSA’s portion and the portion owned by the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA).

    “We will continue to work diligently to ensure our portion of Bannister is available for reuse or redevelopment,” said GSA Regional Administrator Jason Klumb. “We look forward to helping with a process that will meet the dual needs of our community –environmental sustainability and help bring future economic benefits to the surrounding south Kansas City community.”

    NNSA, with GSA as a cooperating agency, is currently working on a National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) study, which is analyzing multiple disposition plans related to the Bannister Federal Complex. Under NEPA, the study will consider the impact of each proposed federal action on the quality of the human environment. As part of this regulatory process, a Record of Decision must be made before making any other decisions about the future of the property. A Record of Decision is expected in December 2012. Completion of the study is part of a larger effort to work effectively with the Environmental Protection Agency and Missouri Department of Natural Resources to ensure that the consideration of environmental issues is an integral part of planning.

    Consistent with the NEPA process, NNSA will work with the small group of companies to further develop their approaches in support of potential reuse opportunities. This approach allows conceptual design and feasibility studies to be performed while not limiting the choice of reasonable alternatives available to the agency.

    NNSA’s Kansas City Plant is moving to a newly constructed industrial complex about eight miles south of the current Kansas City Plant beginning in January 2013. Earlier this year, GSA announced its plans to vacate the property by the end of 2014, but they haven’t identified a future location for its employees.

  • 24 Jan 2012 12:34 PM | Vickie Wolgast (Administrator)
    NNSA awards $80 million in relocation contracts for one of nation’s largest and most complex moves.

    When it comes to planning one of the largest and most complex industrial relocations in the nation, every day counts.  In just one year, the National Nuclear Security Administration’s (NNSA) Kansas City Plant (KCP) will begin a carefully orchestrated move to its new location with the help of six relocation firms who were recently awarded contracts valued at about $80 million.

    In one year from today,  January 23, 2013, KCP will begin the complex task of moving manufacturing, laboratory and office equipment from its current location at the Bannister Federal Complex to a newly constructed National Security Campus eight miles south at Botts Road and 150 Highway in South Kansas City.  The move will involve approximately 2,800 pieces of large capital equipment and over 40,000 moving crates filling approximately 2,600 semi-truck loads.

     “The one-year countdown to moving into the National Security Campus is an exciting and challenging time for all of us at the Kansas City Plant,” said Mark Holecek, manager of NNSA’s Kansas City Site Office. “This new facility offers tremendous advantages to the Nuclear Security Enterprise in flexibility, cost savings, and energy conservation. It is a key element of NNSA’s transformation efforts.”

    KCP selected CB Richard Ellis (CBRE), the world’s largest commercial real estate company, to plan and manage the monumental task of relocating the nearly 3 million square feet facility, including manufacturing, engineering and administrative offices, to the new location. Additional supporting contracts to execute the move were awarded to P1 Group, Inc., Foley Company, Fry-Wagner, Graebel, and Daniels.  The total contract value is over $80 million and is one of the largest purchasing contracts awarded by Honeywell FM&T, the managing and operating contractor for KCP.

    In January 2013, when construction of the new, state-of-the-art manufacturing and engineering campus is complete, the relocation contractors will begin moving the KCP operations in a phased-in approach.  The move will take place over a 19-month period and will allow for dual operations at both facilities to ensure continued delivery of product in support of national security.

     “We have been preparing for this move for several years,” said Chris Gentile, President of Honeywell FM&T. “Many talented people across NNSA have spent countless hours ensuring that our extensive detailed planning will minimize disruption to operations during this historic move.”

    The new smaller, more efficient facility maintains the capability to assure the reliability, safety and security of the nation’s defense systems while enabling NNSA to recruit and retain the next generation of scientists and engineers. KCP remains committed to supporting the President’s nuclear agenda which includes enhanced safety, security and takes advantages of opportunities to reduce the number of warhead types.

  • 11 Feb 2011 10:54 AM | Vickie Wolgast (Administrator)

    Marriott International, Inc. is proud to announce that the 149-room Courtyard by Marriott Kansas City South, located at 500 East 105th Street, has completed a major renovation of its lobby. The hotel will now feature the brand’s new Refreshing Business lobby concept, designed to give travelers the flexibility to work and socialize however they choose while on the road.

    “From day one, Courtyard has prided itself as a brand that listens to what travelers want from a hotel,” said Janis Milham, vice president, Global Brand Manager, Courtyard by Marriott.   “Guests want more control and choice with services and amenities that create a healthy balance between working and relaxing. We redefined the Courtyard lobby so it invites guests to get out of their rooms to work, socialize or for entertainment, whether traveling alone or with colleagues.” 


    The open, bright and contemporary new Courtyard hotel lobby welcomes guests with vivid contrasting colors, including blue, green, orange and red.  The traditional front desk has been replaced with separate welcome pedestals to create more personal and private interactions when guests check in.  This will allow staff to move about to show guests the lobby features and provide assistance.  Flexible seating options range from a communal table in the middle of the action, to more private media booths with high-definition televisions, to a more intimate, semi-enclosed lounge area.


    A signature element of the new lobby is the exclusive GoBoard® technology, a 52-inch LCD touch screen packed with local information, maps, weather, and news, business and sports headlines.  Guests can navigate using the touch screen to find restaurants, local attractions and directions.


    Guests can connect to free WiFi and there will be ample electrical outlets throughout the lobby to power digital devices.  The enlarged business library will feature several complimentary computer terminals along with a free printer and separate computer stations dedicated to printing airline boarding passes and checking flight status.


    Dining has been completely redesigned with The Bistro – Eat. Drink. Connect.; offering casual, flexible seating; easier access to food and higher quality, healthier menu options for breakfast; and light evening fare, including snacks, wine and beer so guests can unwind.  The MarketTM, a 24/7 shop for snacks, beverages and sundries, is always open for late-night cravings or the toothpaste you forgot to pack.


    Green has been Courtyard’s signature color since Marriott launched the brand 25 years ago.  Now it is even greener with the introduction of a guest recycling program for the environment. Receptacles for paper, glass, plastic and metal are conveniently located by side exits.


  • 12 Jan 2011 11:29 AM | Vickie Wolgast (Administrator)

    Affordable Elegance Catering has been selected by KC Small Business Magazine, from over 1,000 nominations, as part of the 2011 class of 25 Under 25.  Each year the magazine honors twenty-five businesses with this award which recognizes companies with under twenty-five employees who have demonstrated a pattern of success as well as corporate, social and civic responsibility.  

    To be considered for the award companies must meet three basic requirements: 1) Have 25 or fewer full-time employees, 2) Operate a for-profit business for three or more years and 3) Be located in the Greater Kansas City area.  Companies are also judged on their financial stability, ability to overcome adversity and challenges, community involvement, distinguishing or defining characteristics and company vision. 

    This year's celebration marks the 10-year anniversary of the event and a black-tie gala celebration, "A Decade of Thinking Bigger", will be held on February 26, 2011 at the Grand Ballroom of the Kansas City Convention Center to honor the companies.

    Affordable Elegance is located in Raymore, Missouri and is owned by Dee-Dee and Greg Stokes.  They have been active members of the South Kansas City Chamber of Commerce for over ten years and Dee-Dee currently serves on the Board of Directors and was the Chairman of the Board in 2010.

  • 03 Nov 2010 6:00 PM | Vickie Wolgast (Administrator)

    This year marks the 65th year of business for Peterson Manufacturing Company. Known locally as the "Quiet Giant" in the Kansas City suburb of Grandview, Peterson has evolved with little fanfare from a tiny, retail-oriented manufacturer to a quarter-billion-dollar, multi-faceted corporation whose safety lighting products and other services reach millions of customers worldwide. Today the family-owned company headquarters on a 44-acre corporate campus in a state-of-the-art, 670,000-square-foot facility housing all departments of Peterson's vertically integrated operations.

    Tobe Tennyson, longtime Peterson Associate and Archivist, recently compiled a timeline marking significant milestones in the history of the company. "I've been fortunate to be in the middle of so much change and growth at Peterson," he said. "And this is just the beginning -- we will continue to grow."

    Among the many milestones that mark Peterson history are the following:

    1945 - Company is founded in downtown Kansas City by Wilbur "Pete" Peterson; manufactures taillights for the automotive aftermarket.

    1956 - Kansas City businessman Don Armacost Sr. buys the company from Peterson.

    1960 - Peterson moves to a 35,000-square-foot facility in Kansas City.

    1961 - Peterson makes industry news with its innovative VIBAR® socket.

    1968 - FMVSS 108 sets new industry standards for safety lighting; Peterson commits to exceeding those standards by 25% or more. Peterson also introduces the popular 107 Mini-Lite for the trailer market.

    1970 - Rapid growth prompts relocation to Peterson's current site in Grandview, Mo.

    1974 - The legend of Grandview's "Quiet Giant" is born as Peterson embarks on the first of several facility expansions.

    Peterson launches a landmark product for trailer markets: the classic 440 S/T/T Light.

    1978 - Peterson launches the model 426 Series, its first sealed lights.

    1980 - Booming business drives another major plant expansion.

    1986 - NHTSA orders all new cars to sport a third, center-mounted brake light, driving explosive sales of Peterson's V300 Retrofit Lights.

    1991 - More plant expansion as Peterson subsidiary, Mission Plastics North, moves operations to the Grandview campus.

    1995 - Peterson leads industry in earning ISO 9001/QS-9000 registration. Company introduces Piranha® LED lights with a 36 LED S/T/T model.

    1996 - Vector Tool & Engineering joins the corporate family.

    1999 - Another industry first: the 10-diode LED S/T/T.

    2003 - More innovation: the industry's first multi-function Strobe & Turn LED.

    2005 - Custom wiring harness subsidiary, Maxi-Seal, moves to Grandview campus.

    2006 - Growing customer demand drives the latest major plant expansion.

    2010 - Grandview's "Quiet Giant" is now one of America's top three safety lighting manufacturers, offering a line of over 2,200 lighting-related products.

    "We're proud to be celebrating our 65th anniversary," said Peterson President and CEO, Don Armacost, Jr. "While much has changed here, one thing that hasn't is a tradition of square dealing that my father established in the early days. It's brought this company a long way, and will continue to guide our relations with customers, suppliers and employees as we move ahead."

    Peterson Manufacturing Company is a world-leading innovator in the production of a complete line of vehicle safety lighting, mirrors, reflectors, antennas and related products. As an ISO 9001:2008 certified company, Peterson Manufacturing is a key subsidiary of Peterson Corporation, 12 highly specialized companies and over 3,000 people working in global transportation-related industries.

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South KC Chamber of Commerce

406 E. Bannister Road, Suite F
Kansas City, MO 64131-3028

Phone: (816) 761-7660
Fax: (816) 761-7340





South Kansas City is one of the fastest growing areas in the KCMO metropolitan area. Millions of investment dollars are being spent in this region, which makes it a prime location for businesses to grow and prosper. 

The South KC Chamber is dedicated to working with KCMO's city leadership, our business members, and local community organizations to create a positive, growth-oriented business environment in South Kansas City. We would love to support your company's growth too! 


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