I Saved Tens-of-millions of Dollars of Inventory, and it Forever Changed the Way We Do Business


THE PRESIDENTS FORUM is proud to bring together industry leaders for CEO events. Our attendees are fully immersed in interesting environments and experiences when attending one of our executive events.

Smiling Manager Wearing Blue Suit


Business and politics have intersected through programs, regulations, and policy. As both worlds become exceedingly more complicated, it is critical that both business and political leaders have more dialogue to ensure positive outcomes for people and communities.

To further this interaction, THE PRESIDENTS FORUM connected several of its member leaders with state legislators in Springfield during the current session to discuss the critical issues impacting them. Hosted by State Representative Martin McLaughlin (R-52), the group and the Illinois business and entrepreneurial community as a whole were recognized on the House floor for the significant impact and contributions made to the citizens and communities of the state.

The group discussed current concerns and needs with both legislators and with Mark Denzler, President and CEO of The Illinois Manufacturers’ Association. Forum members were able to provide critical perspectives on issues impacting their businesses in the areas of talent development through educational programs, the continuing needs for infrastructure and transportation investment, and creating avenues for ongoing dialogue between the businesses that want to continue to invest in Illinois and support its position as a leading state economy.

Beyond those pertinent discussions, the group was also fortunate to experience a “behind the scenes” visit to the Illinois State House and get a view into the history of state government as well as current action on the House floor.

THE PRESIDENTS FORUM thanks Representative McLaughlin, Mr. Denzler, and our participating members, who made this a productive and enjoyable day in support of Illinois business.

THE PRESIDENTS FORUM is proud to bring together industry leaders for CEO events. Our attendees are fully immersed in interesting environments and experiences when attending one of our executive events.


THE PRESIDENTS FORUM tour of Cape Canaveral is something that will be remembered for a lifetime. A year and a half in the making, the day exceeded expectations in terms of the full and dynamic itinerary, the sites we visited, and the high-level personnel we met throughout the day who spent ample time with us, including a NASA astronaut.

The experience, knowledge, and enthusiasm of the “top brass” we met both at the Kennedy Space Center and the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station were impressive and inspiring. We learned a lot about the US Space program from a historical, current, and forward-looking perspective. We also gleaned a much keener appreciation for the interdisciplinary and highly complex challenges of space travel. Rocket science is truly science at the highest level. The expression exists for a reason.

The day then culminated as fortuitously as could be imagined with an actual launch of a SpaceX Falcon 9 Rocket sending a satellite into orbit, which, of course, was an unforgettable experience all its own. Being able to witness firsthand the end result of what the space program is all about was the penultimate icing on the cake of our Cape Canaveral tour!

Manager Having a Meeting With Her Team
CEO Executive in Though at the Company Office Location


May 2014 was our 50th Anniversary, so we decided to do something memorable. For our May Presidents Forum meeting, we went to Minneapolis to visit 3M for the day.

It was a three-pronged day. For the first section, we spent a few hours with seven of their most senior executives. With 85,000 employees, one would imagine that their top team would be extremely capable and enthusiastic, and they did not disappoint. During our candid Q&A, we learned about how they cross-train, motivate, and maintain their highly innovative culture. We also learned how they develop their top people, placing them at various facilities around the world to help round out their skill sets.

For the next section of the day, we toured one of their large plants, which is over 700,000 square feet. Our tour was led by the Plant Manager and several of their key cell leaders as we visited three or four focused factories within the plant. We then had an engaging Q&A session with that management team.

For the third section of the day, we visited their Innovation Center. They have about 30 product platforms, and it was especially inspiring to learn how they cross-pollinate between those platforms to create new products.

We look forward to an ongoing relationship with 3M in which we share best practices and learn from each other.

Overall, the 3M tour exceeded our expectations, and it was a meaningful way to celebrate THE PRESIDENTS FORUM’s 50th anniversary.


After years of being on the Navy’s waitlist, THE PRESIDENTS FORUM was finally approved for a Naval Embark tour aboard an aircraft carrier out to sea. This spectacular tour was an eye-opening, educational experience, providing the opportunity to see the Navy up close, demonstrating their wide range of capabilities in detail.

Our group had the pleasure of meeting three one-star Admirals and being briefed as to what the Navy perceives as the current array of threats to our country, as well as how this elite fighting force will defend against such threats.

In addition, we met numerous key personnel ranging from Hornet F18 fighter pilots, nuclear engineers, chief ordinance officers, and the Master Chief to electricians, plumbers, and new seamen. In an experienced civilian’s eyes, these dedicated and hard-working men and women were committed not only to the mission of their ship but to the Navy as a whole.

To see planes land on the carrier from just a few feet away and then experience an arrested landing ourselves was an intense experience that will not be forgotten anytime soon. To feel the power of being catapulted off an aircraft carrier was unlike any experience any of our members have ever had.

The precision teamwork needed to recover, land, maneuver, load, and unload entire air squadrons on the flight deck of an aircraft carrier was awe-inspiring. It was fast-paced, dangerous, and loud. Observing the flight deck crews communicate and interact in a safe and efficient manner was a powerful testament to the Navy’s ability to effectively train and manage its people.

This trip not only gave our group a more complete picture of the Navy and its many capabilities, but it also confirmed our faith and confidence in the young people of America. The average age of crew members on board the ship was about 22, and there was no sign of an entitlement mentality. Everyone we met worked very hard, often for 10- to 12-hour shifts, for days at a time. We saw an enthusiastic and well-trained young crew with great pride in their country who performed their jobs relentlessly.

You can rest assured that our country is well defended by the U.S. Navy. Our group felt proud to be Americans

Young African American Man Business Leading A Team


Our Presidents Forum VIP Tour of the Boeing factory in Everett, WA, was extraordinary. With 494.68 million cubic feet, it’s the largest building in the world by volume. It’s where Boeing produces the 787 and 777 commercial aircraft.

Normally, Boeing does not allow for this type of up-close tour. We had an opportunity to see their advanced manufacturing techniques and met with their global supply chain expert to learn how they manage their global supply chain.

The scale of their facility and production lines was amazing! We had ample opportunity to ask lots of questions about aerospace, aviation, and all of their products.

This was an unparalleled opportunity to see a world-class company manufacturing world-renowned products up close.


Every member participates in an informal rotating Board of Directors once a month. Advisory Council members meet with 6 to 8 CEOs from non-competing firms for a confidential, detailed analysis of any concerns raised by the meeting’s host.

To learn how to become a part of this active group of local business leaders and participate in CEO events in Chicago, find out how you can join THE PRESIDENTS FORUM today.