Category Archives: Poverty

THIS AIN’T NO LEMONADE STAND

20160402_143634-JAJ TLoop Lonagan—Verbatim

What if y’could combat starvation by producin’ yer own meat ‘n potatoes—and do it right at da local food bank? Hey, I’m lookin’ at a real working prototype here.  What about a solution to student debt?  Or, maybe fer yer next birthday party, ever’body plays laser tag with drones?  Or learns music real fast?  Or gets a little help rememberin’ stuff.  I can use summa that. Continue reading

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A LOOP LONAGAN CHRISTMAS

Clamps Portrait TJohn Jonelis

This is outrageous. I’m concentrating on my computer screen when a huge mitt grabs me by the back of the belt and plucks me from my chair. Next thing I’m dangled high over the desk, arms and legs flailing till I steady my balance and end up nose-to-nose with Big Bill Blair, our urban Paul Bunyan.

“‘Scuse me, Mr. Jonelis,” he says in a slow polite rumble that carries with it a stale smell of corned beef and cigar.

Big Bill slowly chews gum. Looks disinterested. Acts like nothing’s unusual. Continue reading

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ARISE 2.0

DSC_5954by Loop Lonagan

Whadaya think happens when 15,000 people get behind the entrepreneurs in their own neighborhood? Good things—that’s what happens! Energy. Enthusiasm. Stuff gets done! Lemme tell you about it: Continue reading

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TOUGH LOVE

Sandee 15TTechbash – Part 5

John Jonelis

This is a story about raw love. Tough. Rugged. Unashamed.

I’m at i.c.stars—the premier social incubator in Chicago—and I find myself a bit overwhelmed by it all. I stop in to thank Sandee Kastrul, their President and Co-founder and she pours me some hot coffee.

“I think,” She says, “that at the end of the day, there are three things that you should know about us:

  • We’re positioned as an opportunity, not a charity.
  • Rather than exploit our interns, we exploit our CIOs.
  • We’re funded by the technology industry—not the government.

Those seem to me rather interesting assertions for a social venture. But she goes on to explain: Continue reading

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THE APPRENTICE MEETS DIGITAL BOOT CAMP

icstarg 1Techbash – Part 3

VERBATIM – John Jonelis

This is a story of high expectations, high reality, and high energy. I may as well give it to you straight, because Loop Lonogan would want it that way. He’s in the lockup. Too much hard partying on Twelfth Night. His guests spilled into the street and all kinds of trouble erupted—part of it involving a policeman he knocked cold. So I’m here at i.c.stars headquarters. Here to finish Lonagan’s series of articles. I’m talking to the president and co-founder, Sandee Kastrul. Continue reading

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GIVING BACK

DSC_0911 TTechBash – Part 2

by Loop Lonagan

as told to John Jonelis –

Seems to me Christmas is all about givin’ to other people and I say we keep it that way. I love Christmas. Ever’ year I start my celebration on Thanksgiving and don’t take the tree down till January the Fifth. That’s Twelfth Night fer youse guys that don’t know. That night I throw a big party, hire cooks, a piano player, ‘n’ ever’body burns a branch from the tree before they leave.

There’s an outfit right here in Chicago that keeps the spirit o’ giving alive all the yearlong. They find people with talent, creativity, intelligence, hard knocks ‘n’ plenty o’ moxey. Then they pay ‘em to train fer big-time jobs. That’s one o’ the nicest gifts you can give a person with them kinda attributes—a chance to use what they got inside themselves. Think about it—all that potential just waitin’ to burst out so bad a guy could explode. Continue reading

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TALENT HIDES

icstarg 10aTechBash – Part 1

By Loop Lonagan,

as told to John Jonelis –

I feel the bite of Christmas in the air. It’s the season o’ giving. I’m here at TechBash coverin’ fer Da May Report but I never seen an event like this before. Right away, I get hit with pounding music, flashing lights and maybe a couple thousand er more people. Place is fulla bigshots. So many C-level execs at one party—mosta them CIOs o’ big corporations. And the food and open flowing bar. I mean, this is a HUGE party that puts Dennis Koslowski and Tyco to shame—but this one’s legit. Lemme tell you about it: Continue reading

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HEART OF GOLD

Heart of Gold TJohn Jonelis – I knew something outstanding was going on, but when a friend raved about it, I had to stop procrastinating and find out more. Continue reading

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VAST PILES OF MONEY

Chicago Social Enterprise Eyes a Trillion Dollar Market

Piggy BankImpact Engine Part 9 – by Jeff Segal, Message Therapist –

“Anyone who has ever struggled with poverty knows how extremely expensive it is to be poor.”— James Baldwin Continue reading

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BNC TUESDAY NIGHT SMACKDOWN

WeDeliver T2 - photo courtesy TechweekTechweek Part 3 at BNC Venture Capital –

John Jonelis –

The audience roars! This roomful of raucous investors demand answers the way hungry wolves tear at meat. Men and women shout as if in the trading pits of the CME. I see wallets wagging in eager hands, but the kids presenting tonight are unprepared for such a high level of scrutiny and the questions keep coming—one louder than the last. Now the speaker shouts to be heard as the meeting spirals out of control. Continue reading

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KILLING IT

Impact the World TImpact Engine – Part 8

By Jeff Segal – message therapist

Less than a year ago, I asked a prominent figure in Chicago’s startup community about local investors’ interest in the social enterprise model.

She told me flatly, “No one cares.”

Well, they care now. Continue reading

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WHAT’S CLEAN

Impact Engine – Part 6

John Jonelis

~ VERBATIM from a special correspondent ~

PortaPure WaterChildLoop Lonagan here. I’m at a place where my natural greed ‘n’ avarice can do some good fer dis poor worn-out world. This is the Chicago CleanTech Competition—what you might call a race between high-tech global janitorial services. Ten distinguished judges will pick the best o’ da best—companies that’re really doin’ somethin’ to deal with the mess we’re makin’ outa our little corner o’ God’s creation. What we got here is da last ten finalists in our great city and tonight that gets cut down to five. Continue reading

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