VIDEO: Homeless LGBTQ youth find unique home in Humboldt Park

By Rachel White

A free independent housing facility in Chicago’s Humboldt Park neighborhood offers a safe haven for the city’s homeless LGBTQ youth. One resident describes his life in foster care and on the streets before he found a home at a place called El Rescate.

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Rauner’s call for union reform stirs talk before state address

By Emily Hoerner

Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner ignited conversation by sending a memo to the Illinois legislature, calling on lawmakers to prune union rights and government spending just two days before Wednesday’s State of the State address.

The memo prefaced the governor’s cost-saving measures, including state employee rule reforms that Rauner described in the memo as “fair to both state workers and taxpayers.” The note pointed out that federal workers are prohibited from striking and bargaining over wages, benefits and pensions. Illinois union workers are not.

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Chipotle stock falls after sales fall shy of expectations

By Alysha Khan

Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc. cracked the billion-dollar earnings mark with a 52. 3 percent increase in earnings for the fourth quarter but sales fell just short of analyst expectations and the stock fell 6.42 percent to $679.85 in after-hours trading.

“Quite simple, I do not think that we would be able to deliver these results without such a compelling and relevant vision,” said CEO Steve Ells on a conference call with analysts.

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CSO at the Movies presents ‘The Godfather’

By Antoinette Isama

On Tuesday and Wednesday the Chicago Symphony Orchestra goes to the movies, presenting, The Godfather, with members of the CSO playing Nino Rota’s original score.

For the 7 p.m. performance in Symphony Center, Francis Ford Coppola’s mega-hit will be shown on a giant HD screen hanging above the stage, while conductor Justin Freer leads the orchestra in Rota’s score. The performances are among the few taking place worldwide since the world premiere of this combination screening and live performance at London’s Royal Albert Hall in December 2014. Continue reading

Potbelly insiders sold stock as price fell

By Alysha Khan

As Potbelly Corp.’s stock fell throughout 2014, company insiders at the Chicago-based restaurant chain were selling the stock.

Potbelly went public October 4, 2013 at an initial offering price of $14. The stock peaked at $32.40 two days later. It closed Monday at $13.95.

At the beginning of 2014, former CEO Bryant Keil owned more than 1 million shares of Potbelly stock. The chain began as a lunch counter at an antique store on Lincoln Avenue. In 1996, Keil purchased the original location and expanded the neighborhood haunt into a nationwide chain with more than 280 locations. He served as CEO till 2008 and chairman till 2011. He now sits on the Potbelly board of directors.

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Air sick passengers force emergency landing at O’Hare

By Margaret Anderson

What’s a traveler’s worst nightmare? Is it a sudden drop in cabin pressure with oxygen masks falling like dangling jellyfish above the passengers’ heads, or is it no masks at all?

That’s just what happened Tuesday morning when a United flight made an emergency landing at O’Hare International Airport after a pressurization issue sickened passengers. Continue reading

Women on Illinois corporate boards: one is the loneliest number

By Kate Morrissey

When Victoria Medvec heard a recent Catalyst report about the small percentage of women on corporate boards, she had one question, “Who are they?”

She wanted to call the two companies in Illinois that had no women.

Medvec, the executive director for the Kellogg Center for Executive Women at Northwestern University, said companies that include women on their boards end up with a higher quality board because they are pulling from a larger talent pool that includes greater diversity in experience and perspective. The center offers leadership workshops to executive-minded women and keeps a database of attendees to help board searches find qualified women.

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Jazz dance company makes history at Auditorium Theatre

By Megan Kramer

Giordano Dance Chicago performed their first full-length evening at the Auditorium Theatre Saturday, including the premiere of “Shirt Off My Back” by Ray Mercer as part of the theater’s new “Made in Chicago” series.

The performance was a huge milestone for artistic director Nan Giordano, whose father Gus Giordano formed GDC in Evanston in 1963.

“It is a very honored, exciting opportunity for our company,” Giordano said. “We have been on the Auditorium stage numerous times, but we’ve never had our own evening.”

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Chicago blizzard takes social media by storm

By Laura Furr

Chicagoans took to the snow-filled streets this week to capture the realities of the fifth-largest blizzard to ever strike the city.

The 19.3 inches of snow recorded at O’Hare International Airport, according to the National Weather Service, inspired nearly 100,000 Instagram photos using the popular hashtag #chiberia. Almost 3,000 Instagrams were tagged #chicagoblizzard as of Tuesday morning.

Some took to the video-looping app, Vine, to share their playful snow days, while others tweeted of both the struggles and the beauty Chicagoans see each winter.

Here’s how some Chicagoans made the best of the blizzard:

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AbbVie expenses yield loss, stock falls

by Jin Wu

AbbVie Inc. (NYSE: ABBV), the Illinois-based biopharmaceutical company separated from Abbott Laboratories in 2013, reported lower profits in both the fourth quarter and the full year due to foreign currency volatility and expenses of the terminated acquisition of Shire Plc., a specialty biopharmaceutical company headquartered in Ireland. The stock dropped 4.3 percent.

For the quarter ended December 31, AbbVie swung to a loss of $810 million, or 51 cents per diluted share, from earnings of $1.13 billion, or 70 cents per diluted share, in the year-earlier quarter. The diluted EPS missed the negative 44 cents consensus estimate. Continue reading