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FACES & PLACES POW                                                                                  
There were many new faces last Wednesday at the Job Links EXCELerator meeting, hosted this month by Texas Wesleyan University. With a full house (literally, Lou's Place -- a tiny house across campus -- was packed!), guests were quick to mingle with each other and enjoyed delicious breakfast bites and coffee before sharing job opportunities and current workforce information. L to R: Rick McIlvoy, Vincent Smith, Tiffany Smith, and Daphne Brookins with City of Fort Worth.

View additional photos of the event here.

Click on the links below to enter for prizes

Bowled over: Before he dies or retires, whichever is better financially, Mr. B hopes to walk out of Empty Bowls Fort Worth with a Dirk Nowitzki-autographed bowl (or anything Dirk for that matter if you are reading, Mark Cuban). It was there for the taking during the Tarrant Area Food Bank fundraiser one year, but Mr. B hadn't paid for the VIP ticket and lost out to someone who thought they were buying the autograph of a star at the Berlin Wall takedown dunking contest. This event has grown and grown, from dish bowl to salad bowl to bowl-ing center big. Francie Cooper got us a VIP ticket for two readers to go Friday Feb. 20. These tickets get you early entry, early eating from a zillion chefs and early selection of a take-home, hand-crafted bowl.


Fairest of them all: B2B Insider has given out roses, dinners and lingerie in past weeks trying to keep you out of trouble with your bestie. That did not stop 61 of you from emailing until 10 p.m. last night asking for last-minute Valentine's giveaways so you could save a few shekels.  62 if you count Son NoBGood, who is ineligible to win. Linda Franko and April Dalton feel your pain. The Fairest of them all at Fairfield Inn & Suites Fort Worth (I-30), where everybody wears roses-colored glasses, have a luxurious two-night stay, including a daily buffet breakfast, outstanding fitness center, an indoor pool and Lockheed Martin flyovers saluting your stay. 


4 ur BRITts & BRITtanys: Who knew the Botanical Research Institute of Texas planted a summer hit with its Camp BRIT, weekly camps designed for four different age groups. Children spend the week inside the BRIT/Fort Worth Botanic Garden complex working alongside BRIT botanists investigating BRIT's unique prairie habitat. Registration began Monday and Mr. B avoided the cactus and rose thorns among the long line of Brown Bettys and Black-Eyed Susans and grabbed two reservations for BRIT Camp. One is a spot in the middle school leadership camp July 20-24. The other is for the pre-school Bella Goes to (half-day) Camp. You can choose between June 15-19 or June 22-26.  
$5 billion swan song: If there were a contest for Most Interesting Man in the World, Jon Winkleried would be in the discussion. Winkleried is the guest at the Tandy Executive Speaker Series presented by The Neeley School of Business at TCU. He was co-President of Goldman Sachs Group from 2006 to February 2009. Yes, those beginning recession years. He retired at 49 but not before securing a $5 billion investment from Berkshire Hathaway to keep Goldman solvent. TCU's all-time Homer, Dean Erekson, will interview Winkleried Feb. 18 during breakfast and you can think about your retirement while at the Chamber table.


Congratulations to Feb. 4 Prize Winners:

  • Kimberly Perkins, RCO
  • Michael Barnett, Sterling, Barnett Little
  • Marguerite Jones, City of Fort Worth
  • Ilka Maneice, The Fulcrum Group
  • Cindy Olivera, Boxer Retail

Winners will be announced weekly 

Thanks to our sponsors:

Sweet sentiment: Kristen Laramore of Ideal Partners IS an ideal partner. She was attempting to win some Valentine's Day roses and wrote, "Hubby (Monte) refuses to buy flowers... I'm overdue after 23 years of marriage." Mr. B asked if she were overdue for flowers or a new hubby? "HA! I'm keeping the hubby. He's prettier than the roses."

Plane spoken: Allisen Prigel is a third-generation family employee at Broadie's Aircraft, an aviation service and parts company at Meacham International Airport. Broadie's, a Chamber Small Business of the Year finalist, was started by her grandfather in 1946. Her parents, Ken and Kay, are top guns today.   

Name game: Sara Waskow works for FranNet. Please, her name is not Fran.             


Welcome to the Chamber: Mr. B was asked by new member Kelly Wheat of Mackie Brown College about content for B2B Insider. He explained that he takes innuendo and rumor and exaggerates it a bit to try and entertain readers. Said Kelly: "Oh my gosh! My life needs some of that."   


Will this tip be weekly? For your hardscrabble, cracked skin on your hands, knees, elbows and feet, try this lemon and sugar scrub, a moisturizing mix courtesy of Lisa Artman at The Skin Clinic. Mix 1/2 cup of organic sugar with 1 tablespoon each of organic honey, extra virgin olive oil and fresh lemon juice (half a lemon) and rub it in.  


Skechers: Mejo Okon, a talented artist of western lore working with the Riverside Arts Gallery, was the sketch artist during the Warren Jeffs trial. Jeffs was the leader of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and convicted in Texas of two felony charges.  


Wired for sound bites: Claire McGarry is a very funny woman when she isn't being all about her business, Chamber Small Business of the Year finalist Interconnect Wiring. "It's been a long 22 years working with my brother (co-founder John Ashour)," she said. She concluded her elevator speech by saying, "If you need your F-16 re-wired, call us."   


Smile, you're on ...: Gorrondona & Associates recently purchased some mobile scanning equipment and Kathy Stern says "when we use it in the Metroplex, everyone thinks we are Google! You should see the way people act when they think they are on camera!"  

"Fort Worth is a city on the MOVE! And I'm glad to tell you I was driving I-35 this morning and it was moving!"
                                                        -- Fort Worth Mayor Pro Tem Sal Espino
Ya'll come down: The Fort Worth Convention and Visitors Bureau held its Annual Report breakfast last week. Visitors to Fort Worth in 2014 numbered 6.5 million, which is 20 percent growth since 2010. Other themes? A makeover of the Convention Center Arena will do wonders for southeast downtown and there is a need for 1,000 more hotel rooms to handle larger conventions.
  • A most pertinent quote came from keynote speaker and travel association president Roger Dow -- "Dallas + Fort Worth = 3 or 4 or 5." He was discussing how the cities' working together on DFW International Airport and tourism in general has a multiplier effect.
  •  The Quantas flight to Australia and the American Airlines flights to Shanghai, Hong Kong and (coming soon) Beijing each has a $200 million dollar economic impact.
  • This is mind boggling! The travel association says more than 400 million paid vacation days go unused annually.
Care package: Demographers say the folks needing home care services will double in 10 years. That has Mr. B written all over it. David Laurenzo owns a Synergy Home Care franchise and is the regional franchiser. How big is demand? He says there are 12 franchises remaining in north Texas starting at $45k.

Trash talk: The Chamber's Membership Event, during which dozens of volunteers will compete over two days next week to sign up new members, is not without taunting among captains. Mark Nurdin, Bank of Texas, Rosa Navejar, The Rios Group, Kelly Decker, Decker Jones, P.C. and Tom Galbreath of Dunaway Associates, L.P., have delivered declaratory prediction notes of victory. Nurdin delivered a shovel because his team will be mining for gold.

Survey says...: Pretty opinionated? The Fort Worth Transportation Authority (The T) has built Online options include a survey that allows you to provide feedback as a passenger or someone who has used The T's transit services. The other is the project's MindMixer Town Hall site, which provides an online forum for participants to share their thoughts on the vision for transit in Tarrant County.

r u kidding? smatwebdesign is owned by Laurie Smat and Scott Carr. Laurie says people always ask if she forgot an 'r.' "I just tell them we're the smart company without the 'r.'' However, if you took the extra 'r' from Scott's name and gave it to Laurie, they would be a Smart Car. Smat is a Chamber Small Business of the Year finalist.

Presented By


Fort Worth: Energized for the Future Coffee Table Book 


The Chamber's 200-page coffee table book tells the story of our city's remarkable growth and opportunity. This hardcover book highlights Fort Worth's people, companies and diverse culture through richly photographed pages. Purchase it today for $35.00* 

Contact Christine Gores

*Member price. Price excludes tax and shipping.

For sponsorship inquiries, contact Jennifer Vuduris or call (817) 338-3335

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