By Mary Pettinato
I have a confession. Many of you might not know this, but for the past nine years, Honor Flight Chicago has operated out of the basement of my Lincoln Park home. It’s been a dream of mine to give our organization a proper home base, but I never felt it was the right time or we had the right space.
I’m so excited to share that now is the right time and we have the right space — but only thanks to some incredible partners who continue to believe in our mission and come through for us when we ask.
Things have moved quickly in recent months and that Lincoln Park home will shortly be the site of a new condo development. That’s where Wintrust comes in. We’ve hosted our volunteer training and annual volunteer luncheons in their Rosemont-based headquarters and it has always been a great experience.
I shared my dilemma with the team at Wintrust earlier this year and in the course of our conversation, I was informed that Wintrust recently acquired space in an office building across the parking lot from its main building on West Higgins Road. If we were interested, Wintrust was confident an arrangement could be made for Honor Flight Chicago to utilize some of that space.
Were we interested? You bet!
Not only is the site an actual office building, but its Rosemont location is central to the vast majority of our volunteers. Plus, with dedicated parking (something that was always a struggle in Lincoln Park), volunteers who are providing in-office support can easily get in and out without having to drive around looking for a spot.
Here is the address for our new Honor Flight Chicago office:
9701 W Higgins Road
Rosemont, IL 60018-4703
With the space secured, there were still some major projects that needed to be taken care of before we could actually move in. Given the rapidly approaching demolition date, we needed the work done fast. That’s where Colliers International comes in.
Colliers International serves as the property manager at our new building and they’ve been nothing short of incredible. We were presented with contractors to choose from, given recommendations of other workers and services to reach out to, and in each contractor meeting, Colliers shared our story and the impact our organization has had. Afterward, they strongly “suggested” that each candidate offer some sort of reduced rate. Let me say, they truly have gone above and beyond what we’d expect and we haven’t even moved in yet!
The move is scheduled for early May, but before we could settle into our new office, we needed furniture. That’s where Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management, my alma mater, comes in. Kellogg also stepped up for us when we needed them and in a big way.
I received my MBA at Kellogg and my time there was truly inspirational. It was lessons learned there that helped my partners and I get Honor Flight Chicago off the ground. I am incredibly grateful for everything the school provided to me. I phoned a long-time friend at Kellogg and shared my furniture needs, and within an hour I received a call back saying that I should come to Evanston the following day to look at an office that was being remodeled.
By the next day, our furniture needs were a thing of the past.
At this time two months ago, I didn’t know where Honor Flight Chicago’s new home was going to be, but thanks to the incredible support of Wintrust, Colliers, and Kellogg, the uncertainty is gone. A move for anyone can be stressful and challenging, but thanks to those three organizations, our move became a little less stressful.
So, on behalf of Honor Flight Chicago, allow me to say this:
Thank you Wintrust.
Thank you Colliers.
Thank you Kellogg.
Your support is making an incredible difference on our organization and on the lives of the senior war heroes we strive to recognize.
Our new address
9701 W Higgins Road
Rosemont, IL 60018