Market News

Small Business Owners: The Ones Who Get It Done

You’ve probably heard it said that small business is the lifeblood of a community. They provide essential services, create jobs, attract visitors, and together, they create the unique place that people come to know and love. We are incredibly grateful for our large companies like State Farm, Country Financial, and Rivian. They are the economic drivers that allow small businesses to flourish. But small businesses are the color, the creativity and the personality of a community.


As a commercial real estate broker, I am blessed to work with many local small business owners, and they are the some of the most incredible people I know. Successful owners are smart, creative, extremely hard-working, and almost without fault, incredibly generous.


My beautiful friend, Ann Charback, passed away suddenly in April (2022). It was a shock, and it was felt throughout the community. Ann owned JMC Productions, a small, local business, and she was vibrant and involved. She was all the above things and more. Ann showed up! Whether it was a volunteer opportunity, fundraising event, social gathering, or just another “meeting,” you could always count on Ann to be there.

Like Ann, small business owners tend to show up.  In less than a month’s time, the Bloomington-Normal Sunrise Rotary club planned a dinner/auction fundraiser for Ukraine, raising over $45,000. This happened in large part thanks to local small businesses who generously donated auction basket items, food, and cash. There were at least sixty-one small businesses that contributed towards making the event happen. But they didn’t just donate. Small business owners had boots on the ground, helping set up and tear down. They helped serve food and helped take tickets. They used their resources and connections to get things done, from setting up the bar, to catering a meal for 150 people, to finding entertainment and setting up a sound system. They showed up!


Bloomington-Normal is a thriving community, and we are blessed with the stability of large businesses that allow our small businesses to flourish. I am honored to have the opportunity to work with so many small business owners on their commercial real estate needs, but even more importantly, I’m honored to call so many of them friends.


Next time you run across a small business owner, please thank them. And if you need something done, ask a small business owner. It might not be remotely related to their business, but I’ll bet they get it done.