Schaumburg Business Association promotes Lisa Goranson Gilbert to President

Schaumburg Business Association promotes Lisa Goranson Gilbert to President

Schaumburg Business Association promotes Lisa Goranson Gilbert to President

Schaumburg, Illinois—Lisa Gilbert officially takes the “Interim” qualifier off her title as of today. Having served in the role as President since May of this year, Gilbert now ascends to the role in her own right, and she has set a vigorous agenda for the continued growth and prosperity of the 800-company organization.

The Schaumburg Business Association’s Board of Directors conducted an executive search to assure a thorough understanding of the competitive landscape. In the end, it was Gilbert’s wealth of technical knowledge and deep portfolio of experience that earned her the final nod.

Beyond her five years of service to the SBA, her previous experience managing not-for-profit organizations is characterized by year-over-year growth and strong advocacy for members. Her experience prior to joining the SBA— nine years in roles progressing to the Director of Membership for the University Club of Chicago—was highlighted by the acquisition and retention of more than 3,400 members and annual growth averaging 10%. Gilbert has also worked with not-for-profit organizations as diverse as the Chicago’s Lookingglass Theatre, the Swedish American Museum Center and the Metropolis Performing Arts Center.

During her tenure as SBA’s Vice President of Membership, the organization has grown by more than 30%. The variety of programs offered by the various committees within the SBA has expanded significantly—a reflection of the thriving corporate environment in the greater Schaumburg area. Advocacy has blossomed during this time, as well, with efforts that have engaged agencies at local, national, and global levels.

In addition to her formal training, a master’s degree in arts, entertainment & media management from Columbia College in Chicago, Gilbert credits her own entrepreneurial experience as crucial to her understanding of SBA members’ priorities. She is an owner of the Tuscan Market & Wine Shop in Arlington Heights, a wine bar, gastropub, and retailer that is also an SBA member.

“I also think about my very first job, helping my father at his manufacturing firm,” Gilbert adds. “I was eight years old, but I could already appreciate his entrepreneurial spirit. I think about that strength every day; it leads me to have conversations with businesses of all sizes about how they do business and what a chamber such as the SBA can do as their advocate.”

Gilbert has set an ambitious agenda for her first year as President, and the themes are clear: Connect member businesses of all sizes with one another, provide programming that is responsive to their evolving needs, and ensure that the local, regional, and national levels of government hear members’ concerns with an unequivocal voice.

“The Schaumburg Business Association’s strength lies in its members,” Gilbert says. “We represent the second-largest economy in the state of Illinois and have the strength and stability our membership deserves. That is a testament to my predecessors, our staff, our Board of Directors and the Village of Schaumburg. Because we are strong and stable, we are also nimble enough to shape and mold our services—always improving, always staying relevant to our members as they grow and our membership grows.”

The 2019 strategic plan will bring greater clarity to programing with regard to different market segments, business sizes, and levels of management represented in the SBA membership. “There will be new outlets and services for small businesses. There will be new channels for the leadership of larger corporations to connect. Decisionmakers will have even better, more direct access to one another. It’s certainly about generating leads and opportunities, but a greater emphasis will be brought to deeper collaborations,” Gilbert explains.

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