Illinois-educated YouTube founder reinvests in home state

Steve Chen, one of the co-founders of YouTube is helping make sure that Illinois stays at the forefront of education and technology by investing $1 million in the Illinois Math and Science Academy in Aurora.

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In a report largely overlooked when it was published on December 30, a story analyzed the U.S. Labor Department’s year-to-year unemployment rate changes for metro areas. The total U.S. unemployment rate shrank 1.1 percentage points. The ten metro areas with the fastest-shrinking unemployment rates ranged from 2.8 to 4.3 point improvements.

Illinois claims four of the top five spots. Decatur leads with 4.3, along with Danville’s 4.1, Kankakee-Bradley’s and Rockford’s tie at 3.3 point drops.

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Illinois is home to many culinary traditions, from deep-dish pizza in Chicagoland, horseshoes in Central Illinois to barbecue in Southern Illinois.

Illinois is also home to many other diverse culinary traditions, thanks to the influx of residents from all over the world who have made Illinois home.

Sergio De Los Santos opened Sergio’s Cantina in Geneva eight years ago with his wife, Lindsey.

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While same-sex marriage has been legal for less than a year, some wedding planning businesses in Illinois are already seeing an economic impact.

Crafty Broads, a full-service wedding planning business based in Chicago, has seen a dramatic increase in the number of same-sex weddings.

“A few years ago, around 5 percent of our weddings were same-sex couples – today, that number is probably 50 percent,” Cindy Savage said, co-owner of Crafty Broads. “It has really increased quite a bit.”

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Illinois has long been a leader in manufacturing operations, with chemical, auto and food production well established industries throughout its history. While traditional manufacturing as a whole has decreased in the United States, Illinois still maintains a diverse array of manufacturing operations.

Power Solutions International, based in Wood Dale, started as a diesel engine distributor but has since expanded into the alternative fuel market.

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