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VHS hosts Business and Community Leaders Dinner, March 31




Vienna High School will host its 2nd Business and Community Leader Dinner at the end of the month.

Kimberly Barr, Voyage Senior Living’s Chief People Officer, will be there. Ken Stoner, an Illinois Small Business Development Center employee, will also be present. Steve Penrod, the Vienna Mayor, will speak about the New Home Development Program.

The meal will begin at 6 p.m. on Thursday, March 31, in the high school commons.

Joshua Stafford, VHS superintendent, said that “we have a wonderful community.” “Bringing together business leaders and community leaders is an important step to encourage continued growth. All business leaders and community leaders are invited to join us for an evening of fun and learning. Stafford explained that Vienna High School had been working hard to create programs


Kimberly Barr

that would connect students with meaningful careers. We have the vision to create a chamber-of-commerce style group to help businesses in the community. This will also be a win for students.

The Business and Community Leaders Dinners are the first step. The first dinner was held in September 2021. It featured State Senator Dale Fowler (R–Harrisburg) and State  Rep. Patrick Windhorst (R–Metropolis), who spoke about legislative issues relating to community and business.

Stafford stated that the dinners are open for all business owners, business leaders, community leaders, elected officials, and anyone interested in the growth and employment of the community.#

He said, “The agenda for these meetings includes a great dinner along with discussion                                                        about how the school’s careers programming and students can help facilitate the group                                                        and  move it forward.”


At the March 31 meeting, featured:

  •   Barr is The Voyage Senior Living’s Chief People Officer in Marion. Her experience in business spans over 30 years, with 20 of those focused on human resources. She holds the SHRM-CP and PHR certifications. Barr is a problem solver who can train managers to be effective leaders with their direct reports. Her experience includes telecommunications, financial and insurance, and assisted living for seniors. She believes that leadership begins within the company, and HR is responsible for protecting employees and the company.


  • Stoner is active in helping small businesses in Illinois as part of his role at the Illinois Small Business Development Center (SIU). He is a former teacher and business owner who turns his real-life experience into concrete advice and training. Stoner has assisted over 500 local business owners during his nine-year tenure with the SBDC. Stoner’s dual focus on education and business, especially experiential education, led him to serve as a Jackson CEO Program board member. This program helps young entrepreneurs become strong business owners.


  • Penrod was a member of the Vienna City Council before he became mayor. He is a Johnson County resident and retired vice president at USEC, a leading global energy company that supplies enriched uranium and related services to commercial nuclear power plants. Penrod has been working closely with the city council to find innovative ways of developing and growing Vienna. Penrod will be discussing the city’s New Home Development Program, which provides a $10,000 incentive for anyone who builds a new home within the city limits.

Nargis Abbasi

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1 Comment

1 Comment

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    March 21, 2022 at 7:29 am

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Realm Scans: Navigating the Uncharted Territories of Digital Discovery



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