CEO: Know Your Trade

CEO Business Visits


Alan, Joanne, and David Roth

Roth Stoneworks

Roth Stoneworks is a family owned business that is centered around engraving. It started as a wood engraving business and has added stone engraving, decorative brick engraving, and headstone engraving. They pride themselves on the custom work that they do and fill a need for many people local and afar. They work with such integrity in what they do. They pride themselves on standing behind their work and doing the very best that they can. If you want, they will even build you a custom stone sign that looks real but is made of concrete. Very interesting business, located in a town with less than 700 people. You can have a great business and be in a small town.  Joanne, and David shared all about designing and setting up the stones for engraving, and even did some wood engraving while the students were there. 


Brian Schieler

Homeway Homes

Brian Schieler, president and general manager of Homeway Homes gave the CEO students a tour of their construction facility. They kept repeating terms like strength, quality, controlled environment, and safety. Walking through the facility watching the homes being built gave a real sense of pride in what was happening. The plant has so many systems and processes that make the operation move efficiently. The houses start as nothing and work their way down the line from framing to drywall to electrical and plumbing to insulation, and so on. It’s interesting to see a very different concept in the world of home construction.


Trade Show Committee

On Tuesday the 27th, the members of the Tradeshow Committee came to present to the class just what we have to look forward to come May 2nd! Just like previous years, the American Legion will be our host for the Tradeshow from 4:00pm-6:00pm. The class received a lot of very helpful advice and information on what to expect, what to do and how to make the booth their own. They provided themthe trade show program from last year's CEO Trade Show so we could get a visual on just how big the event is! The CEO group has been putting a lot of hard work towards their individual businesses and planning just how they’re all going to shine at this year’s Tradeshow! The team is very excited to see each other’s outcome and ready to bring their businesses to life, as well as present them to the community in the Tradeshow!


Thirty One

Kara Schmidt

Kara Schmidt came in ready to tell the class how to deliberately put yourself in advantageous positions and how to effectively sell yourself. The number one way to begin selling yourself is by either doing or selling something you believe in. She explained that if your product sold itself you would simply need to focus on selling yourself. With this came an importance of brand management. In daily life she advised that you carry three products on you at all time. Finally she offered some advice to the students about their upcoming bank appointments. “Confidence is key.” Without it, even if your product or service is revolutionary, your first impression will hinder your overall potential.


CEO Alumni

Trent Whitham

Trent Whitham is an Alumni of the Land of Lincoln CEO program. Currently in the military, Trent was on leave and wanted to come share with the current students, how CEO has impacted his life. Self confidence was and good communication set him apart from other recruits. His ability to look someone in the eye, shake their hand and speak with a tone of assurance. Trent attributes much of his success to the life lessons that he experienced in CEO. Valuing others, learning the art of listening, and understanding that leaders are pushers, not pullers give great empowerment to an individual.  He also offered advice to the students as they are preparing to launch their individual businesses.  


Donor Relations Director WCIC

Brian Miller

Brian Miller of WCIC spoke to the group about the functions of a non profit organization and the ways in which they strive to make a difference all across the world. With the slogan “faith, hope, family” this Christian radio station works towards saving people from slavery, suicide, and other life threatening situations. Brian discussed the importance of effective marketing and how to create value for your listeners.  In WCIC's case, it's all about peoples listening experience.  He explained strategies such as persuasively turning a “no”
into a “maybe”, and being able to pull in an audience by telling a story 10 different ways.


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The manner in which the CEO program is funded is critical to its success and sustainability. All funds raised are used exclusively for the Land of Lincoln CEO program. To participate, a 3-year $1000 per year commitment is required. Business Partner Investors commitments of time and energy are also critical to the program's success. Contributions may be tax deductible, as our organization is a 501(c)(3) not for profit organization.

When we are not touring local businesses, we need a place to host the class. During that time, the 9 CEO students and their Facilitator would meet at your site where they would also have guest speakers and guests from the community attend. Hosting requires a facility with internet access and adequately accommodates up to 14 people.

We are looking for people to share real-life stories about the concepts of running a business, from strategic thinking, product development to marketing, and cash flow management. Also, sharing your personal successes and failures are what recent classes have enjoyed the most.


If you are interested in participating in any of the above programs, use our contact form to send us a message

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