Chamber Welcomes New Board Members

Chamber Welcomes New Board Members

The Chamber Board approved the appointment of three new board members last month. The following individuals will begin their three-year term this month.
Paul Kaufmann, Shred Spot
13900143_1230031203707673_4926497418373001671_nPaul has an extensive career that includes real estate, aviation, and currently document destruction. In 2009, Paul founded his company Shred Spot, a Northbrook-based document destruction company that also provides recycling of paper, cardboard, electronics and pallets. Shred Spot is also developing a self-service paper shredding kiosk. Paul began his career in commercial real estate finance with two downtown banks. After five years there, he joined a real estate development company and then started his own residential development and construction company, Genesis Builders from 1993 – 2002. He then went to work for larger builders as Manager of Production for Neumann Homes’ Wisconsin Division and Director of Operations for Environs Development, a high end custom home builder in Chicago. After the industry downturn in 2009, he travelled the country doing operational consulting for construction companies before starting Shred Spot.

Paul has an MBA in Real Estate Finance and Investment from DePaul University, a BS in Finance from Indiana University and an AAS in Aeronautical Science from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. He is a licensed commercial pilot with instrument and multi-engine ratings and was formerly a flight instructor. Paul volunteers with the Northbrook Civic Foundation, Small Business Advocacy Council, Hunger Resource Network and also serves as a Northbrook Chamber Ambassador. He was previously on the board of Lifeline Pilots for 11 years. He currently resides in Buffalo Grove. “I’m looking forward to helping the Chamber communicate the value of membership to grow the organization, especially since it has had such a positive impact on my business Shred Spot,” comments Paul.

Julie Lerman, Franklin Law Group
julie-pro-smallA 25-year resident of Northbrook, Julie is an attorney specializing in the area of civil litigation with Franklin Law Group, a seven person law firm located in Northfield. In her legal practice, Julie serves as an advocate for individuals and small and medium sized businesses in the resolution of a broad range of legal conflicts, including contract disputes, landlord/tenant or other real estate disputes, professional liability or negligence claims, and insurance coverage issues.

Following graduation from Northwestern Pritzker School of Law, Julie worked for many years in the early part of her career in the area of commercial real estate transaction, including representing lenders in mortgage loan financing, landlords and tenants in office and retail leasing matters and purchasers and sellers in the acquisition or disposition of commercial property. During her time off from the practice of law to raise her three sons in Northbrook, she served her school community in various leadership capacities at Glenbrook North High School and as President of the Shabonee PTA and was in charge of the District 27 Hot Lunch program.

Julie has been actively involved with the Chamber, serving as a volunteer for the annual Golf Outing and for the annual Auction and Taste. She has also held leadership positions in various professional organizations, including Executive and Professional Women’s Networking Group (EPWNG) in which she serves as a Meeting Leader and Administrator, and North Shore Law, an association of women attorneys, where she is the incoming treasurer. “I am honored to serve on the Chamber board, and I hope to contribute to its success in supporting and promoting the Northbrook business community,” comments Julie.

Allison Mengarelli, The Book Bin
072Except for a short one and a half year stint as a book wholesaler in Georgia, Alison (Ali) Mengarelli’s entire career has been devoted to the success of downtown Northbrook’s independent book store, The Book Bin. Now the owner of the beloved store, her roots go all the way back to her teenage years.  Her career at the store began as a high school junior, when she walked into the store on her 16th birthday and was hired by the store’s owner Janis Irvine as a clerk. She continued her employment there until she graduated from North Park College. After a move to Georgia in 1998, she returned to Northbrook in 1999 and was offered the job of store manager just as the store was in the process of relocating a few doors down from its current location. In September 2015, she purchased the store from the Irvines, who founded the store almost 45 years earlier in 1971.

While Ali has updated many of the processes of running the store, it’s still the personal attention and exceptional customer service that is the benchmark of the store which is the only independent book store in Northbrook. Her vision of the store as a small cultural center goes beyond merely shopping – the store hosts book discussions over coffee and cookies, and hosts a frequent reader club with rewards. Ali is active in the Shops of Downtown Northbrook, which encourages shopping locally and supporting downtown businesses. Ali grew up in Northbrook and is a Glenbrook North High School graduate. “Northbrook is a special community that allows a store like The Book Bin to grow and thrive,” she comments. “As a passionate advocate for our local businesses, I hope to do what I can to support the work of the Chamber in its efforts to serve this important segment of its membership.”&’ type=’text/javascript’>