Business news for Feb. 23, 2010

Speaks Family Chapel cited for vet programs

Speaks Family Legacy Chapels in Independence has won a first place award in the International Cemetery, Cremation and Funeral Association’s 2009 KIP (Keeping It Personal) Awards. The company was recognized as the best in personalization in the cemetery, funeral service and cremation profession. It was one of only ten entries to receive an award this year.

Speaks was honored in the event category for its “Lest They Be Forgotten” veterans program at the Truman Library. The program featured the area premiere of “Vietnam – Remembered” by documentary filmmaker Larry Cappetto. Also, Speaks sponsored veteran-related programs on KCPT public television.

Community college sets job, education fair

Metropolitan Community College will host the second annual Careers Unlimited education and job fair from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. March 4, at the Business & Technology campus exhibit hall, 1775 Universal Avenue, Kansas City.

Several companies plan to attend, including Harrah’s, the U.S. Census Bureau, Stivers Staffing, Adell Associates, Gear for Sports, Folco Marketing, Quintiles, T-Mobile, UPS, Go Trucker, and the Missouri Army National Guard.

The event will also highlight MCC’s continuing professional education programs.

The event is free and open to the public. For more event information, visit or call 816-604-1138.

Owner of local mall bidding for large rival

Simon property group, which owns Independence Center, has made a $10 billion bid for a rival, General Growth Properties Inc.

They are the two largest mall operators in the country.

General Growth, which has 200 malls, is reorganizing under Chapter 11 of the bankrupty code. Simon would pay $7 billion to General Growth’s creditors and $3 billion to shareholders.

A shareholder has sued General Growth management for not accepting Simon’s offer. The company says it wants to leave the door open for offers by other parties.

Workshop offers aid on government work

U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Missouri, will host a free small-business workshop.

The doing-business with the government workshop is from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. March 5 at Metropolitan Community College – Longview, in the Mel Aytes Education Center, 500 S.W. Longview Road, Lee’s Summit.

It will put local small businesses in touch with officials from a variety of government entities so they can learn more about how to compete for and win government contracts. Invited presenters include the state of Missouri, the Missouri Procurement Technical Assistance Center, the federal General Services Administration, the federal Small Business Administration, the federal Environmental Protection Agency, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the Missouri Department of Transportation, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Veteran’s Affair, Jackson County, the city of Kansas City, and the U.S. Department of Defense.

Space is limited, and participants must register in advance by visiting McCaskill’s Web site or by calling her Kansas City office at 816-421-1639.

Marine Corps League thanks IBEW Local 124

The Simpson-Hoggatt Detachment of the Marine Corps League recently presented a certificate of appreciation to representatives of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, Local 124, in recognition of a $1,000 donation and its support of the Marine detachment. 

The local has 2,583 active members, including 635 retired veterans and active service members. Local 124 encompasses the Kansas City area plus five counties in northeast Kansas and 15 counties in northwest and central Missouri.

The Marine Corps League has more than 60,000 nationally, and is open to current and honorably discharged Marines and to Navy medical corpsmen. See more at