Morrison helps save Des Plaines based clothing store

Morrison helps save Des Plaines based clothing store

Morrison helps save Des Plaines based clothing store

Commissioner Morrison’s efforts help keep 131 year old Hart Schaffner Marx suit company from leaving Illinois — Saving over 300 manufacturing jobs in Cook County

Hart Schaffner Marx suit company has been manufacturing men’s suits in the Chicago area since 1887, including a suit for President Obama when he accepted the Democratic Party’s nomination for president in Denver in 2008.

The Des Plaines based company which was facing an end to their current lease in mid-2018 had the difficult task of finding a new and economically viable location in the Chicago area or cease operations and relocate to Ohio.

Hart Schaffner Marx which has been located in Des Plaines (1700 E. Touhy Ave.) for more than 50 years, will now move to a new location in Des Plaines (901 W. Oakton St.) with operations starting in fall 2018.

HSM’s Chief Operating Officer Ken Ragland (L) and Commissioner Sean Morrison (R) inspect one of the new HSM sport coats from the production line.

Hart Schaffner Marx (HSM) Chief Operating Officer Ken Ragland (L) and Commissioner Sean Morrison (R) inspect one of the new HSM sport coats from the production line.

This relocation would not have been possible without the assistance of a Class 6b tax incentive supported by Cook County Commissioner Sean Morrison and the city of Des Plaines, and approved by the Cook County Board of Commissioners at their July 25 board meeting.

“Without the determined efforts of Commissioner Sean Morrison to assist Hart Schaffner Marx with obtaining a much needed economic tax incentive, it would not have been possible for our company to secure a new location and remain in Des Plaines. Relocating outside of Illinois was a real likelihood for us. Hart Schaffner Marx has a long and rich history of producing high quality men’s suits in the Chicago area since 1887 and we look forward to carrying on this tradition for years to come right here in Des Plaines,” stated Kenneth Ragland, COO/CFO for Hart Schaffner Marx, a W Diamond Group Corporation.

Hart Schaffner Marx will bring 350 jobs to their new location with a target date of October 2018 to have the new manufacturing facility up and operational. With one-third less square footage than its existing plant, the new facility will create a more modernized production line footprint which will greatly improve production efficiencies for the company.

Hart Schaffner Marx (HSM) Chief Operating Officer Ken Ragland (L) and Commissioner Sean Morrison review the floor plans for HSM’s new Des Plaines facility.

Hart Schaffner Marx (HSM) Chief Operating Officer Ken Ragland (L) and Commissioner Sean Morrison review the
floor plans for HSM’s new Des Plaines facility.

“It’s essential for us to continue to work hard to improve economic conditions for businesses to grow and thrive in Cook County, especially for our manufacturing base which provides good paying jobs for many families. That’s why it’s so critical that we do everything we can to keep manufacturers like Hart Schaffner Marx right here in Cook County. I’m proud to have been able to assist them in their efforts to secure a new location in Des Plaines with the help of an economic tax incentive which will allow them to streamline their operations and remain competitive in the global marketplace while remaining in Cook County and preserving hundreds of jobs for our residents,” added Commissioner Morrison.

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Ray Hanania

Ray Hanania is an award-winning columnist, author & former Chicago City Hall reporter (1977-1992). A veteran who served during the Vietnam War and the recipient of four SPJ Peter Lisagor Awards for column writing, Hanania writes weekly opinion columns on mainstream American & Chicagoland topics for the Southwest News-Herald, Des Plaines Valley News, the Regional News, The Reporter Newspapers, and Suburban Chicagoland.  

Hanania also writes about Middle East issues for the Arab News, and The Arab Daily News criticizing government policies in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

A critic of mainstream news media bias, Hanania advocates for peace & justice for Israel & Palestine, & the empowerment of Arabs in America. 

"I write about three topics, the Middle East, politics and life in general. I often take my life experiences and offer them in an entertaining way to readers, and I take on the toughest topics like the Israel-Palestine conflict and don't pull any punches about what I feel is fair. But, my priority is always about writing the good story."

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His columns are archived here. Hanania was named "Best Ethnic American Columnist" by the New America Media in November 2007, and is the 2009 recipient of the SPJ National Sigma Delta Chi Award for column writing.

Email Ray Hanania at rghanania@gmail.com.

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