Thursday, August 2, 2018

Responsibilities of a Cub Scout Den Leader

Mike Loftus is the president of MLE Merchandising and Sign Solutions, a provider of turnkey solutions for large-scale renovation, installation, and signage projects. Beyond his work for MLE in Elk Grove Village, Illinois, Mike Loftus serves as a Cub Scout den leader. 

Cub Scout leaders work directly with scouts, their parents, and other den leaders and pack leaders to carry out scouting activities and ensure the success of their dens. The Boy Scouts of America (BSA) defines a den as a group of six to eight boys of similar grade level who meet multiple times a month between larger division meetings, called pack meetings. 

A den leader’s responsibilities include planning and conducting meetings, attending pack meetings, and leading their dens during monthly pack activities. Leaders also help scouts with the transition to a den of the next rank at the end of each year.

To become a Cub Scout den leader, applicants must be at least 21 years old and receive a recommendation from the Cubmaster after meeting with the parents of scouts in a den. Potential leaders must register with the BSA and obtain approval from the local pack committee and chartered organization.

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Nico Hoerner Highlights Cubs 2018 MLB Draft Class

Mike Loftus is an entrepreneur who founded Elk Grove Village, Illinois' MLE Merchandising & Sign Solutions in 2002 and has since led the company past the $25 million revenue mark with more than 100 people employed in 14 states. Outside of his responsibilities with MLE, Mike Loftus is a passionate sports fan who counts the Chicago Cubs as his favorite Major League Baseball (MLB) team.

The 2018 MLB Amateur Draft was held in early June and the Cubs added 42 players, 28 of which were out of college, while the remaining 14 players were drafted out of high school. With its first-round pick, the team selected Stanford shortstop Nico Hoerner, who is regarded as a contact hitter with good patience at the plate. In his last season with the team, Hoerner recorded a .345 batting average to go along with 2 home runs and 40 runs batted in. He also had 17 doubles and 6 triples to go along with 20 walks and 22 strikeouts.

Chicago used its next two picks to add high school players Brennen Davis, an outfielder from Basha High School in Arizona, and Cole Roederer, an outfielder from Hart High School in California. The team rounded out its top five selections with University of San Diego right-handed pitcher Paul Richan and Duke outfielder Jimmy Herron.

Thursday, February 15, 2018

Chicago Bears Hire Former Chiefs Offensive Coordinator as Head Coach

Mike Loftus is the founder, owner, and president of MLE, Inc., a nationally recognized brand services company based in Elk Grove Village, Illinois. When he's not busy with his responsibilities at MLE, Mike Loftus enjoys following the Chicago Bears.

Following a disappointing 2017 season in which the team finished 5-11, the Chicago Bears announced on January 8 that they had hired Matt Nagy as head coach. Nagy replaced John Fox who was let go one week prior to the announcement.

Nagy previously served as offensive coordinator of the Kansas City Chiefs. Under his direction, the team finished fifth overall in offense over the 2017 NFL season. Nagy’s offensive prowess was particularly apparent after the Chiefs head coach, Andy Reid, handed him play-calling duties with five games remaining in the regular reason. During this time, scoring jumped by 10 points per game, and Kansas City finished 4-1.

Nagy looks to bring similar results to the Bears team who finished last in passing in 2017. His efforts will notably involve developing quarterback Mitchell Trubisky, who is entering his second year in 2018.

Friday, February 2, 2018

Expansion of NCAA March Madness Field Remains a Possibility

For more than 15 years, Mike Loftus has led operations at MLE Merchandising and Sign Solutions, Inc., in Elk Grove Village, Illinois, as company president. Beyond his work at MLE, Mike Loftus enjoys following professional and collegiate sports, including the NCAA March Madness basketball tournament.

In 2010, the NCAA opted to expand March Madness from 65 to 68 teams through a series of play-in games. The organization had considered expanding the field to 96 teams as part of a 14-year deal with CBS and Turner Broadcasting, valued at nearly $11 billion, but the concept was met with derision from coaches and fans alike. The smaller 2010 expansion was the first since 2001, when the field grew from 64 to 65 teams.

However, the current broadcast deal continues to provide the NCAA with the option of expanding the tournament at any point, and the attraction of a 96-team field, which would mean more games and increased participation at college campuses around the nation, remains on the table. Critics, meanwhile, point out that expanding to 96 or 128 teams renders the conference tournaments, which are currently very competitive and dramatic, essentially pointless, as virtually every moderately talented team in the nation would qualify for March Madness. 

For now, the NCAA has no immediate plans for growing the tournament outside of continuing to televise every game over the course of the competition, though a middle ground, such adding four more teams for a total of 72 colleges, might be an option.

Saturday, January 20, 2018

Five Ways Pets Improve Mental Health

Mike Loftus is an Illinois-based entrepreneur who founded MLE Merchandising & Sign Solutions in 2002, and has since expanded its operations across 14 states. Outside of work, MLE's Mike Loftus has several pets at home, including two Great Danes. 

Studies have shown that owning a pet is good for your health. Here are five ways pets can improve your well-being.

1. They can decrease stress levels.
Grooming and touching a pet can be comforting and calming, which stimulates the release of oxytocin, a hormone that reduces blood pressure, anxiety, and tension. Oxytocin also suppresses cortisol, a hormone released in response to stress.

2. They provide a distraction from issues that are bothering you.
Spending time with your pet helps to keep you in the present moment and prevents you from dwelling too much on negative issues.

3. They can reduce feelings of loneliness.
Pets make good company and are often intuitive enough to seek you out when they recognize you are feeling sad.

4. They offer unconditional love.
Pets are happy to be with you just as you are and don’t pass judgment.

5. They give meaning to your life.
Caring for a pet gives you a purpose and allows you to reduce your focus on yourself.