About six months ago, some executives at Huntley-based Genesis Medical Imaging Inc., a provider of CT scanners and other medical equipment, received a call.
It was about mummies. They were more than 2,000 years old from Egypt and Peru. And The Field Museum needed help on its tight budget.
"I wasn't surprised," said Genesis President and CEO Robert Dakessian, of South Barrington. "I watch these shows on TV about Egyptian mummies and how they scan them to study them. I knew it was done, but it's not as routine as you would think."
It was logistically complex and the museum got back to the company several months later with all of their approvals. But the mummies were too fragile to move far, so Genesis provided a mobile CT scanner for free.
Several of the museum's specimens were moved to the museum's parking lot where they passed through an advanced multi-slice computer tomography scanner in a 53-foot semi-truck trailer. It provides 3-D images that can be stored on computers, and the images could be rotated to allow researchers to examine them more closely, the company said.
Field scientists found a skull and legs inside one set of wrappings and the baskets of four other mummies were empty. One 2,300-year-old mummy revealed that it didn't have a torso and had been unwrapped, possibly hundreds of years after it was buried. The peek inside the mummies was enlightening for all involved and provided more material for the museum's exhibit.
This wasn't such an unusual request, Dakessian said.
Another time, a dog food company asked for a scanner to do before-and-after shots of pets to examine their growth and muscle mass after eating new food products.
But it was good to be able to donate something back to the Field Museum, Dakessian said, after it has provided so many hours of interest for people. It was intriguing to provide 21st century technology to discover such antiquities, Dakessian said.
"I've been going to the Field Museum since I was a kid and I've taken my own kids there," said Dakessian. "So we decided to tell them we'll do it at no cost."
Expect Schneider Electric's U.S. President Jeff Drees to start house hunting in coming months to be closer to his Palatine headquarters. His wife of 22 years, Amy, and their twin sons and two daughters are still in Dallas, while he commutes here and to other company locations worldwide. He said the company doubled its workforce in the last four years and he plans to hire even more workers by the end of the year.
All that traveling isn't new for Drees. While serving for six years in the U.S. Air Force, the staff sergeant was an engineer who helped to design and build power plants while based in Turkey, Egypt, Korea, Spain, Greece and elsewhere. Champion owner: Leanne Stevens of Carpentersville is the new general manager at Fox Lake Theatre in Fox Lake. She first joined Classic Cinemas as a booth technician at Charlestown 18 Theatres in St. Charles, then transferred to Fox Lake as a regular manager. But once the lights go on and she goes home, she's the owner of a thoroughbred racehorse she bought in 2002. She has since trained the horse to jump and has done some shows. She comes from a family of horse owners, including her parents and an aunt.
One search ends: Charles W.B. Wardell III, who lives in Greenwich, Conn., and Oak Brook, has been appointed president and CEO of Oak Brook-based Witt/Kieffer, a nationwide executive search firm that specializes in health care, higher education and not-for-profits. He was former chairman of Emerging Markets and senior adviser to Korn/Ferry International.
Paul J. Pearson, a heart and thoracic surgeon from Wheaton, will head the cardiac surgery division at Evanston-based NorthShore University HealthSystem. He previously practiced at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, N.Y., and at St. Joseph's Hospital in St. Paul, Minn. ... Communications strategist Laura Ortoleva of Crystal Lake has earned the Distinguished Achievement Award from Re/Max. She works at Elgin-based Re/Max Northern Illinois.
Phil Rutledge of Deer Park, an Allstate agency owner in Barrington, was honored by The Allstate Foundation with the Agency Hands in the Community Award. He also received $1,000 for the American Cancer Society in Lincolnshire, where he volunteers. ... Dave Cusick of Mount Prospect is the new central regional sales manager for Lenbrook America, the U.S. distributor of specialty audio video brands NAD and PSB.
Steve Piper of Geneva, owner of Wireless Zone in Naperville, has opened his second store in Plano. He plans to open eight to 10 more stores in the Chicago and suburban area. ... Alex Geier of Hinsdale becomes a managing director at BMO Harris Bank. He'll lead a team that focuses on providing senior financing to private equity investors in the health-care industry.
Mike Drews of Aurora and Piero Orsi of Long Grove have been recognized as 2011 Realtors of the Year by the Mainstreet Organization of Realtors and the Realtor Association of NorthWest Chicagoland. The two associations plan to merge later this summer, creating a 16,000-member organization, the fourth-largest nationwide.
• There's more to business than just the bottom line. We want to tell you about the people that make business work. I'm Anna Marie Kukec and I'd like to hear from you. Send news about people in business to firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow me on LinkedIn and Facebook and as AMKukec on Twitter.