Pandemic shines ‘great spotlight’ on Illinois’ digital divide

Matt Schmit, head of the office of broadband within the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, speaks Wednesday, Feb. 5, at Ridgely Elementary School in Springfield to announce the release of the first phase of funding for a matching grant program to increase broadband internet access in the state. (File photo. Capitol News Illinois…

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Girl Scouts name chief operating officer, round out executive team

The Girl Scouts of Southern Illinois has announced the promotion of Jessica Upchurch to chief operating officer. Upchurch (top) joined the council in 2017 as the director of volunteer experience. Two years later she became vice president of membership development and support. Now, she oversees the daily operations of most customer-facing departments including membership, program,…

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Here are the 12 semifinalists in SIUE Metro East Start-Up Challenge

Small-business start-ups vie for $10K prize A dozen Southwestern Illinois-based entrepreneurs and their innovative business concepts have been selected to move into the second round of the 7th annual Southern Illinois University Edwardsville Small Business Development Center Metro East Start-Up Challenge business plan competition. More than 25 entrepreneurs expressed interest in the regional competition this…

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Group says there’s potential energy in Illinois’ wind sails

By MARY SCHUERMANN KUHLMAN, Public News Service – Illinois SPRINGFIELD – There’s encouraging news about Illinois’ potential for wind energy development in a new analysis. The 17 states spanning the central U.S. are known as the “Wind Belt,” with roughly 80 percent of the nation’s current and planned wind-energy capacity. And Jeff Walk — director…

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Website aims to help area construction industry navigate COVID challenges

ST. LOUIS – While the construction industry has been deemed an “essential industry” during the pandemic, the daily stress of navigating Covid-19 has created some unique challenges.  In response,  the nonprofit Construction Forum has created a website with helpful resources and videos to support industry efforts to better manage stress on the job and other…

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Greensfelder partners with Homethrive to offer elder care benefit to employees

Greensfelder, Hemker & Gale, P.C., which has offices in the area, including in Belleville, announced it is partnering with Homethrive, a family elder care coordinator, to offer all of its employees a fully covered family caregiver service benefit as part of the firm’s broader benefits package. The benefit is available immediately to all employees across…

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Judicial circuit to create domestic violence outreach program with new grant

The 3rd Judicial Circuit comprised of the courts in Madison and Bond counties, has received a grant from the Illinois Supreme Court Commission on Access to Justice. The grant funds will be used to create a domestic violence services outreach program. Self-represented litigants throughout Madison County will be provided with current information, resources, and procedures…

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Law enforcement to support Special Olympics Illinois

Special Olympics Illinois will once again partner with the Law Enforcement Torch Run to host #LETRDays at Schnucks grocery stores located across Illinois. Special Olympics is the charity of choice for local law enforcement as they volunteer to raise awareness and funds to support individuals with intellectual disabilities. Law enforcement and Special Olympics Illinois volunteers…

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RiverBend Growth Association urging businesses, residents to mask up

The RiverBend Growth Association is encouraging area businesses and residents to mask up and help slow the spread of the novel coronavirus. “All we’re asking is for people to do their part to keep businesses open,” said John Keller, president of the RiverBend Growth Association. Due to the resurgence of the virus in the Riverbend…

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