Big Stories: April, 2019   
 Business Links:
Coldwell Banker
    - Equity Group

1st Premier Properties
Capitol Cadillac
Contract Servicing
City Of Salem
Elsinore Theatre
Etcetera Antiques
Freeman Motor
George Fox University
Glance Eyewear
Graham Aviation
Kwans Original Cuisine
The Lighting Gallery
Lady Web Pro
Mercedes-Benz of Salem
The Meridian Building
Marion County
     Public Works

Oregon Smile Care
     Business Journal

Personnel Source
Rushing Group
Salem Blue Printing
Skyline Ford
Sperry Van Ness,
     Commercial Advisors

SMI Commercial
John L Scott Realty
Salem Downtown

Withnell Auto
Rudio Creek Ranch
Columbia Bank
Fidelity National Title
United Health Care
Universal Life Church
Valley Motor Company
Valley Credit Union
     Public Relations

Willamette Valley

Windermere Properties

  Oregon Business Journal
  P.O. Box 93
  Salem, OR 97308
  (503) 365-9544

Full April 2019 Issue * Salem Weather * Past Issues * About Us * Ad Rates * Contact Us


Rotary Selects Salem Contractor
for Amphitheater Project

"It is fitting that Dalke Construction,
a local company celebrating its 100th year
in business, should construct an iconic
building that commemorates 100 years of
community service by the Rotary Club of Salem"

    The Rotary Club of Salem has chosen Dalke Construction of Salem as the general contractor for the Gerry Frank Salem Rotary Amphitheater. Construction of the new Riverfront Park amphitheater is envisioned to begin in the first half of next year with completion later in 2020. Rotary Club President Rus McCracken noted that Dalke is a highly regarded local business that will lead construction of the unique basketweave structure, patterned after the open weave baskets used by the Native American Kalapuya who were historic occupants of the site.
    "It is fitting that Dalke Construction, a local company celebrating its 100th year in business, should construct an iconic building that commemorates 100 years of community service by the Rotary Club of Salem," McCracken said.
    Dalke Construction President Larry Dalke expressed gratitude for the opportunity to lead such a one-of-a-kind construction effort. "The Gerry Frank Salem Rotary Amphitheater will be a landmark that will serve this community for generations. I got chills upon learning we will have an opportunity to build such an extraordinary project."
    CB Two Architects of Salem designed the performance stage and cover that will host a variety of entertainment and cultural events for the region. CB Two's Kirk Sund commented, "Our firm is excited to work with the great team at Dalke Construction as they bring into reality our vision of Rotary's legacy gift to Salem."
    Named in honor of Gerry Frank for his lifetime of service to Oregon and his 60 years of service as a Rotarian, the amphitheater will occupy the southeast corner of Riverfront Park near the Peter Courtney Minto Island Bridge.
    For more information, or to donate to this community project, visit www.


Local Business Professionals Leading by Example in the Community

Don Sturgeon, Elizabeth Rhoades and TJ Sullivan

    You would think that the busiest, hardestworking people generally don't have the time to give back to their community. However, a few exceptional Salem leaders carve out space from their packed schedules to pursue what's truly important. That is why the Salem Chamber of Commerce First Citizens award is so special.
    On March 8, under the glimmering lights in the Salem Convention Center, hundreds of guests gathered to celebrate the outstanding philanthropic efforts of their peers. The event acknowledges individuals who, through their investment in the community, volunteering and hearts for service, improve the lives of those in Salem.
    This year, the First Citizen was Ken Jundt, senior vice president and regional manager at Columbia Bank. Mary Louise VanNatta, CEO of VanNatta Public Relations, and Elizabeth Rhoades , president of C&R Remodeling, were honored with the Distinguished Service Award. Alvin Klausen , the owner of Vagabond Brewing, received the Outstanding Young Professional award. Jundt has had a long history of advocacy for children through his involvement in the Crystal Apple Awards, Hoopla, and Boys and Girls Club, to name a few. The list of boards he has served on and nonprofits he has supported is far-reaching. He is beloved in the Salem community and was an extremely popular choice to be Salem's First Citizen. Entering to the song, "I Left My Heart in Oregon," by Mat Kearney, Jundt brought his entire family up to accept the award with him.
    VanNatta Public Relations has been part of the Salem community for over 50 years. VanNatta was recognized for her commitment to the Chamber and for promoting local businesses. In addition to her volunteer work, she has donated services to groups like the Salem Fire Foundation, helping them get started and raising hundreds of thousands of dollars for community health and safety initiatives. In her presentation, she spoke fondly of the late Chamber executive Mike McLaran. She dedicated her award to her father, company founder, Fred VanNatta.
    The other distinguished service award winner, Rhoades, was recognized primarily for her outstanding devotion to volunteering. Rhoades donated huge amounts of her personal time to helping important causes in Salem and has been a true example of what a leader should be.
    Klausen used the valleys in his life to build mountains. With a deep draw toward the city claimed as Oregon's Capitol, he has invested in the business community, using his talents build people up. His acceptance speech recognized other downtown business owners who were working to make Salem a better place.
    It is hoped that the First Citizen's Banquet and its honorees act as a catalyst, inspiring the attendees and business owners alike to be servant-leaders in the city of Salem. The Chamber will be accepting nominations for the 70 th First Citizens event at the end of this year.
    Learn more at

Ryan Dempster
President and Chief Financial Officer
Willamette Valley Bank,

    Willamette Valley Bank recently announced the appointment of Ryan Dempster as President and Board member. Mr. Dempster, who began serving as the Bank's Chief Financial Officer shortly after he joined the Bank in 2007, will assume responsibility for day-to-day operations while retaining his duties as Chief Financial Officer. Neil Grossnicklaus, who has served as the Bank's President and Chief Executive Officer since 2001, will continue as Chief Executive Officer and lead the institution's strategic direction.
    "The efforts of Mr. Grossnicklaus and the entire Bank leadership team have led to the development of a strong foundation and solid reputation as a great community bank," commented Ed Martin, Chairman of the Board of Directors. "We are excited about Mr. Dempster's promotion as it ensures a seamless leadership transition that will allow the Bank to continue its position as one of the state's leading community banks.
    "Mr. Dempster is a strong leader who is an active member of the Salem community and we feel he is an excellent selection to lead the institution long into the future."
    Mr. Dempster has been active member of the Salem community since earning his Business Administration degree from Corban University and serves as a Board member for several non- profit organizations. Mr. Dempster is a Certified Public Accountant and graduate of Pacific Coast Banking School at the University of Washington. He and his wife, Emily, live in Salem with their two children.
    Over the past several years, Willamette Valley Bank has been acknowledged nationally for their financial strength and performance. They were recently named one of the country's top 200 performing community banks by American Banker magazine and top community bank in Oregon.