The keynote speaker at Thursday night's Rockford Chamber of Commerce dinner brought a powerful message to town.
"So what I'm doing tonight I'm showing everyone a different perspective," said Vinh Giang, a motivational speaker. "So that they can see how it's actually done. What I find interesting is that often the reason we can't solve problems is not because there's no solutions. It's because the magician or the problem has trapped us into looking at things from only one perspective."
Giang captivated more than 800 people with that message at the Chamber's annual membership dinner. There was a bit of business to tend to as well.
Chamber President and CEO Einar Forsman updated members on what's to come in 2017.
"Eighty percent of the Chamber's membership are small businesses," said Forsman. "So we're going to open up a small business development center and bring it back to our community and help grow and inspire new businesses in Rockford.
The center left Rock Valley College two years ago. Forsman said the Chamber's been working since then to bring it back. He said they're on the cusp of doing that in 2017.
The chamber also recognized the Citizen of the Year. It's Brent Brodeski. The CEO and Co-Founder at Savant Capital. He wasn't able to be at the dinner, but 13 WREX did get to speak to him by phone.
"I've gotten involved in a lot of organizations over time," said Brodeski. "When you find the intersection of something you believe in and something where you can contribute, the opportunity is significant."
Brodeski couldn't be at the dinner because he's currently taking an MBA class at Harvard.