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Braley Visits African American Museum in Cedar Rapids to Celebrate Black History PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Jeff Giertz   
Friday, 24 February 2012 15:24

Braley presents museum with several documents relating to black Iowa’s history

Cedar Rapids, IA – Rep. Bruce Braley (IA-01) today traveled to the African American Museum of Iowa in Cedar Rapids to celebrate the rich history of African Americans in Iowa.  February is Black History Month.

“African Americans have left an indelible mark on the history of Iowa, and I’m proud to commemorate their legacy,” Braley said.  “From the Iowa Supreme Court decision in 1839 outlawing slavery – 26 years before the end of the Civil War – to the integration of Iowa universities in the 1940’s to LaMetta Wynne’s election as Iowa’s first black mayor in Clinton, black Iowans’ struggles and milestones continue to this day and deserve celebration.  Black history is truly American history.”

 

Braley presented the museum with a copy of the book, Black Americans in Congress: 1870 – 2007. Braley also presented the museum with poetry written by Dr. Robert M. Carney, his family doctor in Brooklyn, Iowa, and one of the first African-American doctors to practice in rural Iowa.  Finally, Braley also presented an article from Sports Illustrated called “Invisible Men,” which documents the career of Joe Lillard, an early NFL star from Mason City, Iowa, who was known as the “Midnight Express” at a time when NFL owners imposed a “gentlemen’s agreement” to prevent African-Americans from playing professional football.  Lillard and other black players fought to play.

 

The African American Museum of Iowa was founded in 1994 by members of the Mount Zion Missionary Baptist Church in Cedar Rapids in celebration of Black History Month.  Construction on the museum’s permanent home began in 2002, which opened in 2003.

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National Survey Reveals Genders DRASTICALLY Clash Over How They Would Spend More Free Time PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Emily Reass   
Friday, 24 February 2012 15:09
Men head to the bedroom for fun, women for sleep!

(February 22, 2011) – The bedroom is the first place both men and women would go if they had more free time in a day. The catch - men go there for sex, women for sleep!

In a survey, Great Clips, the first ever hair salon brand to introduce time saving online check-in, asked 316 Americans how they would spend 15 minutes of more time in a day. (15 minutes is important to Great Clips because Online Check-in has trimmed average haircut wait times by 15 minutes to five minutes or less, giving customers 15 more minutes of time in a day.)

1. Survey recipients were given a list of options and asked to choose what they would do with 15 minutes of extra time in a day.

THE #1 CHOICE FOR MOST WOMEN IS SLEEP (Ranked #1 by nearly 1 in 4 women, 24%)

  • Most Often Ranked in The Top 5 were Sleep, Clean (organizing closets, dust baseboards, mop floors), Read, Watch TV and Exercise.
  • Have Sex was lower on the list after Sit There and Do Nothing with No Disturbances and Cook.


THE #1 CHOICE FOR MOST MEN IS HAVE SEX (Ranked #1 by 28% of men)

  • Most Often Ranked in the Top 5 were Have Sex, Sleep, Listen to Music, Exercise, Sit There and Do Nothing with No Disturbances


2. When survey recipients were given a list and asked to rank the 3 most annoying time wasters of their spouses/significant others:

THE #1 CHOICE FOR WOMEN AS THE MOST ANNOYING TIME WASTER of THEIR SPOUSE/SIGNIFICANT OTHER is PLAY VIDEO GAMES

  • Most often Ranked as the Top Choice is Play Video Games, Work Too Much and Do Nothing (Tie) and Zone in front of the TV


THE #1 CHOICE FOR MEN AS THE MOST ANNOYING TIME WASTER of THEIR SPOUSE/SIGNIFICANT OTHER is PRIMP AND GET READY

•    Most often Ranked as the Top Choice is Primp and Get Ready, Complain/Whine/Stress, and Stare at a Closet Full of Clothes and Whine “I have nothing to wear.”

3. When Both Men and Women were asked to rank the Most Annoying Time Waster in Your Own Life?

Most often ranked as the Top Choices:
#1) Being Placed on Hold
#2) Waiting In Line
#3) Traffic

4. When both men and women were asked What Do You Want More of? and asked to pick one from Time, Money, Sleep, Exercise and Sex:

Respondents Chose:
#1) Money (70%)
#2) Time (13%)
#3) Sleep (9%)
#4) Exercise (8%)
#5) Sex (0%)
NONE CHOSE SEX (0%)

“In all our research, in focus group after focus group, we heard that today’s busy families are stressed out, exhausted and short on time – and today time is money,” says Rhoda Olsen, CEO of Great Clips. “We had to figure out a way to cut wait times and give our customers more free time to have fun and do the things they love to do. Online check-in allows people to check in from their desks or from their smart phones so when they get to the salon they have little or no wait and have more time.”

Other survey findings:

  • 87% of respondents say they would use a technology that kept them from waiting in lines at retail stores if it saved them 15 minutes waiting for an appointment.
  • When a retail business makes them wait more than 15 minutes:
  • 63% say it shows bad customer service and a lack of respect for their time
  • 52% of respondents say they don’t go back and take their business elsewhere
  • 48% say they assume the business is poorly managed
  • Only 19% say they get annoyed with the people in line with them.
  • 9 out of 10 respondents (93%) said a reasonable amount of time to wait at a retail business is 5 – 10 minutes or less.
  • 2 out of 3 respondents say they would use a check-in or download app that saved their place in line at a retail business.

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Use Tax Season to Organize for the Future PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Ginny Grimsley   
Friday, 24 February 2012 14:46
Financial Planner Shares Tips for a 21st-Century Filing System

Jane was not looking forward to going through her parents’ belongings to get their house ready to sell. Their health had been failing for some time and they finally agreed to move to a retirement community. Now that they were both comfortably moved into their new apartment, it was up to Jane to get rid of the things they no longer needed.

Her parents had lived in the same house for more than 50 years, so Jane expected to find things that should have been tossed out years ago.  But she was amazed to discover 50 years of tax returns and bank statements carefully stored in boxes in the attic. Her parents had saved all their financial records!

Many people are confused about what records they need to keep and for how long. They hold onto tax returns, bank records, brokerage statements and other financial information simply because they don’t know if they’ll need it again. Like Jane’s parents, the documents get packed in boxes that eventually take over valuable living or storage space.

Financial planner Rick Rodgers, author of The New Three-Legged Stool: A Tax Efficient Approach To Retirement Planning (www.TheNewThreeLeggedStool.com), says tax time is a great time to get organized.

“Most people are going through their records to get ready to file their return,” he says. “This is the time to get smart about what you need to keep and then set up a system to store it efficiently going forward.”

Rodgers suggests these five steps to help you effectively organize your finances for 2012 and beyond:

1. Out with the old – Discard the records you no longer need: Tax returns older than seven years; bank records and credit card statements that are not related to the tax returns you’re keeping; brokerage statements that aren’t related to purchases of current holdings. Be sure to shred all your old documents before throwing them out.

2. Go digital – Convert the documents you plan to save into digital images that are stored on your hard drive. Invest in a good scanner and scan as you go through your paperwork, shredding and tossing the hard copies as you go. On your computer, file by tax year, so your 2011 folder will contain your tax return for 2011 and all pertinent bank records and receipts. Organize the previous six years the same way. Next year you can delete the oldest folder when you add the 2012 folder.

3. Save a forest – All of the financial institutions you deal with would prefer to send your statements electronically. Stop receiving paper statements. Instead, download your statements electronically and store them in your new filing system.  Most banks and credit card companies keep at least a year’s worth of statements available.  You need to download these files only once a year to complete the year’s file.

4. Save backups in case of emergency – Make backup copies of your files on a CD. Choose a CD-R (recordable) as opposed to a CD-RW (rewriteable), because CD-R cannot accidentally be overwritten. Depending on your computer operating system, you may be able to continue adding data to a CD-R each year, until the CD is full. However, some operating systems won’t allow that, so you’ll need a new CD for each year.

5. Go paperless – Your new electronic filing system can be expanded to include all your financial records, from car maintenance receipts to pay stubs.  Wills and insurance policies can also be scanned and stored but, of course, keep the originals of those in a safe deposit box or fireproof safe.

Gone are the days of saving your financial documents in box and shoving it into the attic.  Technology advances have made organizing your personal finances easier with minimal cost.  Make 2012 the year you get organized by moving your finances into a 21st century filing system.

About Rick Rodgers

Certified Financial Planner Rick Rodgers is president of Rodgers & Associates, “The Retirement Specialists,” in Lancaster, Pa. He’s a Certified Retirement Counselor and member of the National Association of Personal Financial Advisers. Rodgers has been featured on national radio and TV shows, including “FOX Business News” and “The 700 Club,” and is available to speak at conferences and corporate events (www.rodgersspeaks.com).

 
Governor Quinn Dedicates Tuskegee Airmen Memorial Trail in Honor of Black History Month PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Nafia Khan   
Friday, 24 February 2012 09:57
Highway Will Honor Unit’s Service, Bravery and Sacrifice

 

MARKHAM – February 20, 2012. Governor Pat Quinn today joined local leaders to dedicate the Tuskegee Airmen Memorial Trail, which honors the fighter group’s valiant service to the United States during World War II. Presented to the Chicago “DODO” Chapter of Tuskegee Airmen, this dedication celebrates the Airmen’s commitment to our country and important place in black history. State Representative Marlow H. Colvin (D-Chicago), State Senator Kwame Raoul (D-Chicago), Illinois Department of Transportation Secretary Ann Schneider and Markham Mayor David Webb joined Governor Quinn in commemorating the Tuskegee Airmen’s achievements.

 

“As Illinois observes Black History Month, I am proud to honor these men as an important part of Black history and American history,” Governor Quinn said. “It is important to recognize our men and women who sacrificed to so much defend our rights. Their service to our country will always be remembered."

 

Formally known as the 332nd Fighter Group, the Tuskegee Airmen were the first group of black pilots to ever fly for the U.S. military. Overcoming prejudice and discrimination, this elite group played an integral role in the Allied victory in World War II. The unit flew more than 15,000 combat sorties for more than 1500 missions and by the end of the war had earned more than 900 citations, including 150 Distinguished Flying Crosses. Today, the Tuskegee Airmen continue to serve our country as an organization working to provide youth with education opportunities.

 

Pursuant to House Resolution 28, sponsored by Rep. Marlowe Colvin (D-Chicago), the Tuskegee Airmen Memorial Trail will be the stretch of Interstate 57 between Exit 339 at Sauk Trail Road and Exit 358 at Wentworth Avenue in Chicago. IDOT will place signs at these points to mark the historic trail. A copy of the resolution is attached.

 

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Start Closing the Income Inequality Gap Yourself PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Ginny Grimsley   
Friday, 24 February 2012 09:50
Expert Offers Tips for Taking Charge of Your Life

The memes for the current economic recession have been “income inequality” and “the 99 percent versus the 1 percent” as the 106 million Americans earning $45,000 or less each year feel the most pain from job loss, foreclosure, underwater mortgages and inflation.

Some say the solution is for the government to redistribute the wealth, perhaps by taxing the top money-makers at a higher rate. Real estate businessman Trevor Bolin, author of Take Charge and Change Your Life Today (www.bolininternational.com), says there’s a better way and it’s one that will make more people happier – and wealthier.

“I went from the bottom 10 percent at age 17 to the top 2 percent at 28 by making some changes in my life,” says Bolin, who owns three realty companies in British Columbia.

“The system is very simple, but not all of the steps are easy. It requires self-discipline and changing bad habits, but it’s all possible if you follow the steps. And I promise, following through on just one will dramatically affect your life.”

Some of Bolin’s strategies:

• Commit. Vow right now that you will follow through 100 percent on every step you take toward changing your life, whether it’s making more money, losing weight or becoming a better parent. Commit to succeeding, not just surviving. Know that luck has nothing to do with it – it’s hard work, attitude and giving back. Committing 100 percent means that, if you decide to read a book on investing, you won’t quit after three chapters. If your goal is to drop 20 pounds, don’t stop after 10.

• Change your attitude. Just as negative thoughts have the power to negatively affect outcomes, so do positive thoughts. Start each day with positive thoughts, and change negative thoughts to positive ones throughout the day. This may be hard at first, but the more you work at it, the easier it gets. Rather than wake up cursing the rainy day, be grateful for it. Water is one of our most valuable natural resources, and rain is cleansing. Remind yourself each morning of all the good things in your life – your health, your home, your spouse. Tell yourself that your meeting today is going to be engaging and productive, or your job interview is going to go well.

• Figure out your “Y.” Your Y is your reason for everything. It’s shaped by the past, formatted for the present and goal-formatted for the future. It’s reflected in every decision you make. If you don’t know your Y, your decisions will be made on the basis of habit, what you learned growing up, and what your immediate needs are. But if you’ve decided your Y is that you want the peace and security of financial success, you’ll be guided by that every time you make a choice.

• Set goals. On a piece of paper write down all of your goals, short-term and long-term. Next, number them 1, 3, 5, 10 or 20 based on how many years it should take to achieve them. Losing 20 pounds? That might be a 1. Buying a new car? That could be a 3. Now, take your top five 1 goals and write down why you want them and how you plan to achieve them. Do the same thing for each set of goals. Having goals is vital and keeping them in front of you will help keep you on track toward achieving them. Most important – be sure to cross each one off as you achieve it. Take it from me, there’s no better feeling.

Paying yourself first – saving a portion of every check – and giving back to society, whether through service or philanthropy, are also key to Bolin’s roadmap for changing your life.

“It’s all about having a plan,” he says. “You can create success as long as you’re putting a plan into motion.”

About Trevor Bolin

Trevor Bolin owns three realty companies in British Columbia, including one in his hometown of Fort St. John, which was named the No. 1 RE/MAX small-density office in the world. He’s also chairman of Bolin & Co. International Training, which offers coaching and seminars for business people. He has served three terms on the Fort St. John City Council.

 
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