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IBR announces 2015 CEO of Influence names

IBR CEOs of influence through the years (L-R): Charley Jones, Stinker Stores Inc., 2013; A. Scott Anderson, Zions Bank, 2011; George Iliff, Colliers International, 2012; Bill Whitacre, J.R. Simplot Co., 2014; Jim Everett, Treasure Valley Family YMCA, 2011; Sylvia Hampel, Clearview Cleaning, 2014; Scott Kreiling, Regence BlueShield of Idaho, 2014; and Chris Taylor, Fishers Technology, 2014. Photo by Pete Grady

IBR’s CEOs of influence through the years (L-R): Charley Jones, Stinker Stores Inc., 2013; A. Scott Anderson, Zions Bank, 2011; George Iliff, Colliers International, 2012; Bill Whitacre, J.R. Simplot Co., 2014; Jim Everett, Treasure Valley Family YMCA, 2011; Sylvia Hampel, Clearview Cleaning, 2014; Scott Kreiling, Regence BlueShield of Idaho, 2014; and Chris Taylor, Fishers Technology, 2014. Photo by Pete Grady

Now in its fifth year, the Idaho Business Review CEO of Influence program recognizes Idaho’s best business and nonprofit select few whose commitment, performance and excellence exemplify effective leadership.

From 18 candidates representing large and small private companies, small businesses, and large and small nonprofit organizations, eight are the IBR 2015 CEOs of Influence. A selection committee of mostly past honorees rated each one in five categories: leadership, awards and achievements, setting and meeting goals, community service, and the “wow” factor, with “of influence” being the overarching requirement. Each candidate was reviewed by at least four people.

The selection committee was a venerable “who’s who” of Idaho leaders lauded as CEOs of influence over the last four years: from the class of 2011 – Jessica Flynn of Red Sky A Strategic Communication Agency, and Rick Ritter of Idaho TechConnect, now with New Ventures Lab Inc.; George Iliff of Colliers International, Michael Ballantyne of Thornton Oliver Keller Commercial Real Estate and Bill Connors of the Boise Metro Chamber of Commerce representing 2012; Bea Black of the Women’s and Children’s Alliance for 2013; and Connie Miller of Icon Credit Union and Scott Kreiling of Regence BlueShield of Idaho from 2014. Cece Gassner, counsel for Perkins Coie, the program’s presenting sponsor, also participated.

All selection committee members said their work was challenging. Ballantyne said he was very impressed with this year’s candidates, “especially those working in the nonprofit world – they are rock stars!”

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Connie Miller, Icon Credit Union, speaks at the CEO of Influence awards event in 2014. Photo by Pete Grady

Connors said being part of the review process was an honor, but “difficult to stratify the nominees as they are all great business leaders and community builders.”

“I am proud to be in a community like ours with leaders that roll their sleeves up and do what is right for Idahoans,” Kreiling said, “even when it doesn’t always appear to make the most financial sense for their business, but it does make sense from taking care of our community and doing what is right.”

Ritter said he had to read through the candidates’ information three times as he worked through the review process. “Each of the candidates are clearly top-notch in their fields of endeavor.”

Black said it was inspiring and humbling to participate in the review process. “I never cease to be amazed by the caliber of community-minded individuals that live and work in our community.”

This year’s Idaho leaders will be feted with an awards dinner open to the public at the Riverside Hotel May 19, and a magazine featuring their profiles will be published with the Idaho Business Review May 22.

IBR’s 2015 CEOs of Influence

J. Thomas “Tommy” Ahlquist, Gardner Company, Boise

John Cunningham, Block 22 LLC, dba Grove Hotel, CenturyLink Arena and the Idaho Steelheads, Boise

Ted D. Epperly, Family Medicine Residency of Idaho Inc., Boise

Jason Fry, Wood River Community YMCA, Ketchum

Richard Johnson, Family Advocates, Boise

Susan Morris, Albertsons Intermountain Division, Boise

Kâren Sander, Downtown Boise Association, Boise

Bob Schwenkfelder, Commercial Tire, Meridian

About Jeanne Huff

Jeanne Huff is the special sections editor at IBR, editor of Women of the Year, Accomplished Under 40, CEOs of Influence, Money Makers, Leaders in Law, Corporate Guide to Event Planning as well as editor of custom publications including Welcome to Boise, Dining Decisions, Idaho Heartland Living and Travelog.