Top ValpoLife.com Business Articles for 2012

By: Brett Fuller Last Updated: December 7, 2012

It's that time of year again where we wrap up 2012 by looking back at some of the best stories we published on ValpoLife.com throughout the year.

It was a great year for the Business section on our site with articles highlighting areas of business development, staff motivation, legal tips and news, market and investing news and information, real estate updates, and technology.

Check out the 2012 Best of ValpoLife.com Business below!

The State of LIFE - Letter to the Community
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Volt Across America - Spring Break 2012 with the Family in Arnell Chevy Volt
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My family and I joined our extended family on a trip down to Florida for Spring Break this year. One great reason was obviously to spend some good, quality time with everyone after a busy and work-filled winter. A second reason was to spend some good, quality time driving down the 2012 Chevy Volt that we already are driving around Northwest Indiana, and testing how that would fare on a trip down south.

The Volt is already an absolutely incredible car to drive around town with 35 miles of spirited, gas-free driving each day after a charge as an electric vehicle. But I could only describe what is it like driving this bundle of technology and efficiency from the Chicago area - Valparaiso Indiana, to southwest Florida with your family in one word: awesome.

Take a Walk Back in Time on Mini-Main Street at Flanagin's Bulk Mail
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At Flanagin’s Bulk Mail Service, you can take a walk back in time and view a little bit of hidden history with Flanagin’s Mini Main Street of Hidden History.

Donna Flanagin, along with daughters/co-owners Erica George and Monica Decker, have created this walk back in time by designing store fronts, a post office, and a railway station down to the tiniest details. Almost every item on Mini-Main Street has a special meaning to the women. You might just see an iron scroll on a shelf, but Donna Flanagin sees a hidden Mickey Mouse.

NIPSCO CEO Discusses Powering Lives and Businesses, Looks Toward the Future with Porter County Chamber Members
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“We have been a part of the fabric of this community for 100 years and we’re excited ,” stated Jimmy Staton, Chief Executive Officer for NiSource Gas Transmission & Storage, during a presentation in front of the Porter County Chamber Coalition at Strongbow Inn on May 17, 2012.

The NIPSCO CEO spoke in front of about 150 of members in Strongbow Inn’s Charles Room of their banquet hall. The Porter County Chamber Coalition includes the Chesterton/Duneland, Hebron, Kouts, Portage, and Valpo Chambers of Commerce.

The event, sponsored by the Porter County Community Foundation, touched on NIPSCO’s role in providing access to utilities to hundreds of thousands individuals, powering their lives and their businesses.

My Mobile Fans and ValpoLife.com Partner in Development of New Mobile App
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Ideas in Motion Media and My Mobile Fans have partnered to deliver the Northwest Indiana community a new ValpoLife.com mobile app, now available on the Apple and Android platforms.

The app is designed to be an easy way to view and share good news on the go, with access to ValpoLife.com’s over 20,000-deep archive of good news stories, 84,000 photos, and 500 videos from the past three years, with every piece of content available since the online community’s launch in March of 2009. The app also will allow users to utilize their mobile device to share photos and stories directly to the ValpoLife.com editorial staff, expediting the process of sharing good stories currently taking place in the community.

Family Express Welcomes Ruth Keefover to Social Media Community Manager Position
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Family Express, is excited to announce the hiring of Ruth Keefover as Social Media Community Manager. Ruth will be responsible for managing the daily functions of social media, which includes actively participating in a wide variety of activities such as Family Express’ social space, blogging, community development as well as being connected with the broader social media world. She will also work with employees to generate stories that happen in their stores as well as their community while growing and building a more online presence through social media.

“As a lifelong resident of Northwest Indiana, I’m excited for the opportunity to engage and build relationships with our customers, communities and employees by being an ambassador of our “Living Brand”.

Steindler Signs Wraps Yet Another Ideas In Motion Media Vehicle, A 2012 Chevy Volt in "Connect to Good News" Partnership with Arnell Chevy-Kia
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Have you seen the highly decorated and detailed vehicles that belong to Ideas in Motion Media? They sport our logos with colorful designs displayed all over, making quite a positive statement as they cruise down the street. Well, meet the newest addition to the fleet Chris Mahlmann, Publisher and CEO of Ideas in Motion Media, took his Arnell Chevy-Kia Chevrolet Volt to Steindler Signs & Graphix in Wanatah, IN to get a custom car wrap.

"This will be the fifth car wrap that they have done on our behalf and we love working with them,” said Mahlmann. “We are more excited about this one than any other as it really focuses on our core messages and ties into what is awesome about the Volt being plugged in to good news," Mahlmann said.

Ideas in Motion Media Launches Third Good News Online Community with LaPorteCountyLife.com
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Ideas in Motion Media, publishers of ValpoLife.com and PortageLife.com, have launched their third exclusively-positive online community network, LaPorteCountyLife.com, dedicated to sharing the good news stories of people, organizations and businesses throughout La Porte County.

The new online community network, encompassing the website, email newsletter and social networks, officially launched Wednesday, August 15, 2012, allowing users to access the full multimedia experience of stories, articles, photos and videos, all promoting good news throughout La Porte County.

Porter County Chamber Coalition Network Night Rocks the Expo Center!
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Welcome to Chamber Network Night! It’s the only night of the year where dressing in costume for professional business purposes is totally acceptable. Being the biggest networking event in Porter County, over 150 businesses from all over Northwest Indiana came and set up booths in the spacious rooms of the Porter County Expo Center. Everyone had a fun and productive time chatting with the other exhibitors, learning about new products and services, playing games, and eating LOTS of candy.

As stated before, many businesses attended. Read what some of them had to say about why they love coming to the Porter County Chamber Coalition Network Night. "Frontier is huge into community involvement and networking with other businesses. It's natural to be part of this night. It benefits current and potential customers," Todd Pence of Frontier Communications said.

2012 E-Day Award Winners Honored for Excellence in Entrepreneurship
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A large cast of entrepreneurial-minded business folks gathered at the 21st Annual Entrepreneurial Excellence Awards this week for E-Day. The Northwest Indiana Small Business Development Center honored nine individuals who have demonstrated the vision, discipline and leadership that it takes to make a lasting impact on small business, often the driver for our economy in the region and beyond.

Jim Oberweis kicked off the event with an energetic recap of “the good, the bad and the ugly” of building, rebuilding, and adapting companies in changing economies and evolving markets, from financial services to his family’s signature ice cream at Oberweis Dairy. His business story, along with his political one, with him recently elected to an Illinois Senate position, is one of perseverance.