Roscoe Co. Featured in Column on Neighborhood

Posted May 6, 2015 at 5:59 pm

Jim Buik, president of the Roscoe Co., Chicago, recently was interviewed by a columnist for the Chicago Tribune in a piece about efforts to revive the Lawndale neighborhood, where the third-generation industrial independent is based.

Bernard Jennings, who runs the Lawndale Business Renaissance Association, led columnist Mary Schmich on a “seeds of hope” tour of this West Side neighborhood that was damaged by rioting in the 1960s and has never fully recovered. Various businesses, however, such as Roscoe, have stuck with the area, and are working together with Jennings to help make things better. That was the reason for the tour that Schmich chronicled in her column. The first stop was Buik’s plant.

“We climbed the indoor stairs of an old brick building, the kind that looks impenetrable and grim when you’re whizzing past on the Eisenhower Expressway, but it was pleasantly airy up in Jim Buik’s office,” Schmich wrote. She quoted Buik as saying that, “I could sell this business to one of the nationals and walk away a multimillionaire. But I like it here.”

The column went on to describe the work Buik and other business operators in Lawndale are doing to help encourage renewed private-sector development in the neighborhood, with help from Jennings and the association.

And sources said Lawndale is drawing some new businesses – along with a recent proposal by the University of Illinois at Chicago to build President Barack Obama’s future presidential library on a vacant site in the neighborhood. Click here to learn more.