Utah’s biggest international sporting event since the 2002 Winter Olympic Games

Friday, May 28th, 2010


Memorial Day weekend brings a nice break from work as we take time to enjoy all our state has to offer. We fire up the grill, take the camping trip and enjoy some well-deserved rest and relaxation.

We’re also hosting our largest international sporting event since the 2002 Winter Olympic Games.

The Lucas Oil Utah USA Round of the FIM Superbike World Championship Presented by HANNspree runs Saturday, May 29th through Monday May 31st at Miller Motorsports Park.

The Superbike World Championship is the third biggest racing series in the world. Each race is broadcast over 95 television networks to 175 countries and 120 million viewers. By comparison, 13.3 million viewers viewed this year’s Daytona 500.

The Miller Motorsports Park stop is the series’ only appearance in the Western Hemisphere. They also race in Australia, Portugal, Spain, the Netherlands, Italy, South Africa, Czech Republic, England, Germany and France.

If you like speed, this is the event for you. Supersport bikes have 600 cc engines that top out at 175 mph and Superbikes have 1200 cc engines with a top speed at of 200 mph.

The weekend kicks off today with a motorcycle parade from the State Capitol through the streets of downtown to The Gateway where the pre-event party includes an autograph session, skydivers, stunt bikes, live music as well as interactive displays and exhibits.

Since it’s Memorial Day, the weekend includes a major tribute to both military (active-duty and veteran) and civilian-service personnel (including police, firefighters, teachers, paramedics, etc.).  There will also be a Tribute Field of 2,010 American flags erected in the track’s infield with a huge display of equipment and exhibits from all branches of the armed forces at the track throughout the weekend.

Miller Motorsports Park is also hosting a classic rock concert, titled “United in Rock” at the track on Saturday night from 6-10 pm featuring Styx, Foreigner and Kansas. Concert-only tickets are available.

There will also be plenty of fan-friendly activities during the weekend, including stunt bike demonstrations, BMX demonstrations, Lucas Oil Stunt Plane flyovers, car show, barbecue competition, pit walks, autograph sessions, Lucas Oil Off-Road Racing Series demonstrations, karting, free access to the paddock/teams and skid car rides.

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Business leaders discuss progress of Downtown Rising vision

Thursday, May 27th, 2010

The construction and economic development of Salt Lake City’s downtown core is on schedule, and Utah’s Capital City has become a destination for businesses looking to relocate. That was the message that surfaced during a roundtable discussion sponsored by the Downtown Alliance, held today in the law offices of Holland & Hart LLP, located at 222 Main.

Roundtable panel members included economic development, real estate, legal, and commercial development experts and interests downtown:

Mark Gibbons, President of City Creek Reserve

Mark Gibbons – Downtown Roundtable from Salt Lake Chamber on Vimeo.

Mark Bouchard, Senior Managing Partner of CB Richard Ellis

Mark Bouchard – Downtown Roundtable from Salt Lake Chamber on Vimeo.

Carl Barton, Partner at Holland & Hart LLP

Carl Barton – Downtown Roundtable from Salt Lake Chamber on Vimeo.

Bob Springmeyer, Principal of Bonneville Research

Bob Springmeyer – Downtown Roundtable from Salt Lake Chamber on Vimeo.

Jim Tozer, Managing Director & President of Vectra Investments

Jim Tozer – Downtown Roundtable from Salt Lake Chamber on Vimeo.

Jeff Edwards, President & CEO of the Economic Development Corporation of Utah

Jeff Edwards – Downtown Roundtable from Salt Lake Chamber on Vimeo.

Bruce Bingham, Partner at Hamilton Partners

Bruce Bingham – Downtown Roundtable from Salt Lake Chamber on Vimeo.

Lane Beattie, President and CEO of the Salt Lake Chamber.

Lane Beattie – Downtown Roundtable from Salt Lake Chamber on Vimeo.

Most noteable among the 30-plus downtown construction projects, the City Creek Center is less than two years away from completion.

“Will be completed on schedule in March 2012. We’re now down to our last 22 months before the entire project is completed,” said Mark Gibbons , president of City Creek Reserve. “If you put it in the context of a marathon, which is 26 miles, we’ve passed the 20 mile mark. What’s interesting is that the milestones we’re passing now are more visible and more exciting than any of the milestones we’ve had through the last 20 miles.”

The panelists agree something special is going on in Salt Lake City as the Downtown Rising vision becomes a reality.

“We talk ‘location, location, location,’ and Salt Lake City is the location,” said Jim Tozer, managing director and president of Vectra Investments, which owns the Walker Center. “This is the best location between the Mississippi River and the west coast. We have superior education, superior arts and a transportation system that on the ground is going to be extraordinary.”

“What’s occurring today in Salt Lake is going to be looked at, both domestically and globally, as legendary,” said Mark Bouchard, senior managing partner of CB Richard Ellis. “We are evolving as a community with a significant investment at a time when no one else in the world is doing that.”

Downtown Alliance Executive Director, Jason Mathis, who served as discussion moderator, provided a summary of important progress milestones downtown:

  • In the past year, a total of 30 new storefront retail businesses, including restaurants, pubs and nightclubs have opened on or around Main Street.
  • 222 Main; Salt Lake City’s first LEED certified high-rise, and Utah’s fourth LEED Gold certified building, has opened its doors and welcomed several new tenants.
  • The pedestrian bridge recently placed across Main Street; mid-block between South Temple and 100 South is a visual indictor of construction progress.
  • Downtown related investment between 2005 and 2012 will total approximately $5 billion. There is no period in the history of Salt Lake City with equivalent investment activity in such a concentrated time frame.

Salt Lake City among Kiplinger’s Five Best Cities for the Next Decade

Wednesday, May 26th, 2010

Salt Lake City is an innovate kind of place and one of the ten best for the next decade according to Kiplinger’s Personal Finance. SLC made came in number five just behind Austin, TX, Seattle, WA, Washington, D.C. and Boulder, CO.

Kiplinger’s has high praise for Utah’s Capital City: “Home to the University of Utah, internationally recognized for its research in genetics and health sciences, Salt Lake City is a hotbed of new-business creation. Plus, the local talent pool is tops for its technical knowledge and outstanding work ethic. Utah’s relatively low wages, taxes, and operating costs create an ideal haven to run a business—and you can’t beat the easy access to myriad ski resorts.”

This year’s picks are profiled in the July issue of Kiplinger’s Personal Finance magazine, on newsstands June 8, and online with additional interactive features.

To identify the winners, Kiplinger’s teamed up with Kevin Stolarick, research director at the Martin Prosperity Institute, a think tank that studies economic prosperity.

“New ideas generate new businesses,” says Stolarick, who this year evaluated U.S. cities for growth and growth potential. “In the places where innovation works, it really works. People in fields such as science, engineering, architecture, and education are catalysts of vitality and livability in a city.”

“It’s no coincidence that economic vitality and livability go hand in hand,” says Kiplinger’s senior editor Robert Frick. “Creativity in music, arts and culture, plus neighborhoods and recreational facilities that rank high for ‘coolness,’ attract like-minded professionals who go on to cultivate a region’s business scene. All of these factors make our 2010 Best Cities more than just great places to live. They’re also great places to start a business or find a job.”

Kiplinger’s Best Cities of 2010:

1. Austin, TX

2. Seattle, WA

3. Washington, DC

4. Boulder, CO

5. Salt Lake City, UT

6. Rochester, MN

7. Des Moines, IA

8. Burlington, VT

9. West Hartford, CT

10. Topeka, KS

Governor hosts business leaders at Governor’s Mansion

Monday, May 24th, 2010

Governor Gary Herbert hosted The Salt Lake Chamber Board of Governors and the Capitol Club at the Governor’s Mansion yesterday. The Governor praised the business leaders for their perseverance during difficult times and shared some positive business news.

“We all appreciate the importance of the private sector and the opportunites provided to the people of our state,” said Gov. Herbert. “The risk of capitalism is what has made America great and we understand that in Utah.”

Local business leaders also had a chance to share some good news with the governor. Jonathan Johnson, president of Overstock.com, told the group his company just reported the strongest quarter in its history.

Lew Cramer, president of the World Trade Center reported that Utah merchandise exports are up 65 percent over last year, tops in the nation.

“You are the cornerstone of our efforts,” said the governor. “Our job is to stay out of your way and to help you prosper. My goal is to keep that commitment to you.”

The governor also applauded the Chamber for its leadership. He shared the story of Boise St. running the hook and ladder with the game on the line against Oklahoma in the Fiesta Bowl. The governor pointed out that the play was called by the back-up quarterback.

“It is a team game and we all play a role. We are all on team Utah,” said Gov. Herbert. “We have to get contributions from everyone. The engine that drives our team and our economy is our business community.”

Bishop Irish becomes first female Giant In Our City

Friday, May 21st, 2010

The Rt. Rev. Carolyn Tanner Irish delivers her acceptance speech after being named A Giant In Our City

Last night, the Rt. Rev. Carolyn Tanner Irish officially became the first woman honored as a Giant In Our City. As she pointed out in her acceptance speech, she isn’t the first woman to be a Giant In Our City, she’s just the first to be so honored.

The Giant In Our City award is presented by the Salt Lake Chamber Board of Governors and is recognized as the most prestigious business award given in Utah. Bishop Irish is the first woman to be honored so honored in the 40-year history of the award.

Chamber President and CEO Lane Beattie said: “Those who have been named as A Giant In Our City are more than just successful business people. Bishop Irish has overseen a remarkable business, served as a spiritual leader and greatly enhanced our community. She is the very definition of A Giant In Our City.”

Bishop Irish has succeeded in the business, she’s the chair of the board of directors of the O.C. Tanner Company, which was founded by her father, Obert Tanner. But succeeding in business isn’t by itself enough to be named a Giant In Our City. Bishop Irish has contributed to the community as a spiritual leader. She is the 10th Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Utah, the first female leader of a major denomination in the state.

‘The real Giant is the enormous community that forms and sustains our lives, and we are all a part of it,” said Bishop Irish. “There is a whole network of relationships in this gigantic community to which we belong—mutually giving and receiving for the common good.  Each of us does our part, often in critical times or in hidden ways.”

Bishop Irish’s ability to reach out and build a sense of oneness between the religious and the secular, commerce and community, makes her A Giant In Our City.

Also during the award ceremony, Beattie took time to honor former Giant In Our City B.Z. “Bud” Kastler who passed away in November. Kastler served as Chamber president in 1977, a position now equal to chair of the Salt Lake Chamber Board of Governors. A decade later, in 1987, he was awarded the Chamber’s highest honor, being named a Giant In Our City.  Kastler was director and former chairman, president and CEO of Questar Corp., Mountain Fuels Supply Co. and its subsidiaries.

Beattie also took a moment to honor Fred Ball, who served as Chamber president for 26 years and was also named A Giant In Our City in 1995. Ball recently retired from Zions Bank where he was the voice of the popular “Speaking on Business” segments.

The Salt Lake Chamber Board of Governors established the Giant In Our City award in 1969. The award was created to honor the lives of exceptional and distinguished public service and extraordinary professional achievement. It is considered the Chamber’s most prestigious award and is given periodically by the Chamber Board of Governors. Bishop Irish is the first individual woman to be named A Giant In Our City.

The Epitome of a Giant In Our City

Friday, May 21st, 2010

Prepared remarks given by Lane Beattie at the Giant In Our City awards May 20, 2010

Since 1970, when Eric C. Aaberg was named the first Giant In Our City, we’ve honored many remarkable business leaders.

In recent years, we’ve honored President Gordon B. Hinckley, Jon Huntsman, James Sorenson, Larry H. Miller and Bill Nelson. Just last year, we honored both Ellis Ivory and Roger Boyer.

Each of these names represents more than just a person; it represents a contribution that will outlive the individual.

Since we last met to honor A Giant In Our City, our community lost one of its Giants. B.Z. ”Bud” Kastler, passed away in November. He was 89 years old. Bud was director and former chairman, president and CEO of Questar Corp., Mountain Fuels Supply Co. and its subsidiaries. Bud was a great businessman and a stellar individual and he is greatly missed. Born in Billings, Montana, Kastler came to Utah to pursue his education and became a pillar of the community.

Another of our Giants, Fred Ball, recalls that “Bud was very knowledgeable, very capable and a champion of the free enterprise system.”

Bud served as Chamber president in 1977, a position now equal to chair of the Board of Governors. A decade later, in 1987, he was awarded the Chamber’s highest honor, being named a Giant In Our City.  He was a giant in our community and a major force for good and growth for our state.

We are also honored to have several “Giants” here tonight.

Would you please stand and be recognized as I read your name?

G. Frank Joklik
Verl Topham
Roger Boyer
Spence Eccles
and Fred Ball

It is wonderful to have all our Giants with us this evening— but if I may, I want to say it is particularly nice to have former Chamber President Fred Ball with us.

Fred was the president of the Salt Lake Chamber from 1971 until 1995 when he was named a Giant In Our City.

You may have noticed something about the honorees we just recognized… they all have something in common.

Tonight we add to our esteemed group of Giants, the first female honoree.

The Giant In Our City award was created in 1969 to honor lives of exceptional and distinguished public service and extraordinary professional achievement.

It is the Chamber’s most prestigious award and is given periodically by the Chamber’s Board of Governors.

To say the Right Reverend Carolyn Tanner Irish is a deserving recipient of this award would be an understatement.

She is the epitome of all that the Giant In Our City Award was created to honor.

Civic engagement, service to the community and a love for our great state are all qualities that distinguish a successful individual from a one worthy to be counted as A Giant In Our City.

Clean Air is key to economic growth

Friday, May 21st, 2010

Clean Air is key to economic growth from Salt Lake Chamber on Vimeo.

Bryce Bird, planning branch manager at the Utah Department of Air Quality sat down to discuss the importance of air quality to public health and the strength of the economy.

For more information on air quality in Utah, please visit airquality.utah.gov or cleanair.utah.gov.

Under Secretary of Commerce discusses international trade

Tuesday, May 18th, 2010

Under Sec. of Commerce discusses international trade from Salt Lake Chamber on Vimeo.

Francisco J. Sanchez, under secretary of commerce for international trade sat down to discuss exports an the President’s plan to double exports over the next five years.

Sanchez was recently appointed by President Obama to lead the International Trade Asministration, which assists in developing U.S. trade policy in the global economy and administers U.S. trade laws.

As a senior policy advisor to President Obama during the 2008 campaign, he served as the chairman of the National Hispanic Leadership Council.

Honoring our newest Giant In Our City

Friday, May 14th, 2010

I’m looking forward to an historic evening this Thursday as we honor Bishop Carolyn Tanner Irish as a Giant In Our City.

Bishop Irish will be the 30th person honored by the Chamber Board of Governors as A Giant In Our City, and she will be the first woman.

The 29 previous recipients, as well as Bishop Irish, constitute a remarkable group of individuals who have been presented the most prestigious business award given in Utah for their success as business leaders and for something more.

Those who have been named as A Giant In Our City are more than just successful business people. Just in the past decade we’ve named Giants including Spencer Eccles, Mitt Romney, Don Cash, Nick Rose, President Gordon B. Hinckley, Jon M. Huntsman, James LeVoy Sorenson, Larry H. Miller, William H. Nelson, Ellis Ivory and Roger Boyer. Going through that list you can see these names are all synonymous with business leadership. They are also the business leaders who have made contributions to our community that transcend the ledger sheets of their organizations.

The work of A Giant In Our City is to make our community better, to improve lives and to help others succeed.

Bishop Irish is a perfect example of everything A Giant In Our City should be. As the chair of the board of directors at O.C. Tanner, she has overseen a remarkable business; as the Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Utah she has served as a spiritual leader and greatly enhanced our community.

The Chamber is proud to honor Bishop Irish as A Giant In Our City. We’re looking forward to a wonderful event this week.

Expo MarketPlace helps Utah businesses connect

Thursday, May 13th, 2010

The Salt Lake Chamber Expo MarketPlace helped Utah businesses connect, network and strength their bottom lines today at the Salt Palace Convention Center.

“Times have been pretty challenging for many of these businesses,” said Lane Beattie, president and CEO of the Salt Lake Chamber. “I’ve heard more optimism from our exhibitors and the attendees today and that’s a positive sign for our economy.”

In its 22nd year, the Expo MarketPlace, previously called the Business-to-Business Expo featured 150 exhibitors ranging from small to big organizations. Approximately 800 people attended the event.

Bill Manning, president of Major League Soccer Cup Champion Real Salt Lake, was the keynote speaker at the Expo Forum, a luncheon hosted prior to the opening of the Expo MarketPlace show floor. Manning shared the keys to building a championship organization.

The Expo MarketPlace is held semiannually with the next installment set for October 28, 2010 at the Salt Palace Convention Center. Registration for the next even is open now.

Video Courtesy of KSL.com