Businessman Arn supports community organizations

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Shelly Birkelo
Tuesday, May 6, 2014

JANESVILLE—Janesville businessman Jamin Arn said he feels lucky to have been the financial force behind the YMCA of Northern Rock County's Healthy Kids Family Day since 2006.

Other businesses have pulled or reduced their sponsorships, but not Arn.

“Arn has remained committed to this successful annual event that draws 1,500 people to the downtown YMCA,” said Tom Den Boer, YMCA CEO.

Arn said he feels blessed.

"For us to be able to have the ability to give back on any level, we just feel like the luckiest company in the world. We're not a big corporation, but when I have the opportunity to give back, I like to do that," said Arn, owner of OfficePro, 615 N. Parker Drive.

Without Arn's sponsorship, which pays for about 75 percent of the community wellness and healthy kids day, “It's likely the Y would not be able to continue hosting this event or on as large of a scale as it does,” Den Boer said.

The afternoon event is free. It offers classes, demonstrations, workshops, healthy snacks, health screenings, swimming, a bounce house, tours of the facility and use of the YMCA all day, he said.

"Jamin's contribution is really supporting a major health wellness initiative through this event every April along with support our scholarship program. I'm tickled to death that he has not only maintained but also increased his contributions over the past several years. I take that as a compliment that he believes in what the Y does," Den Boer said.

Arn is a small businessman with a lot of energy and passion for development, who looks for projects that makes an impact on the local level, he said.

"When you run your business in that kind of demeanor, it's a natural flow into your personal life how you manage and work with family, philanthropic and community interests. When he does something, there's meaning, thought, care and respect behind it," Den Boer said.

Arn said he receives thousands of impersonal requests for money daily. But Den Boer reached out to him to see if there was any interest in partnering with the YMCA, doing some sponsorship and being a little more involved.

"It wasn't an impersonal request like you get from other entities," Arn said.

Arn, a member of the YMCA, advocates for other local organizations.

"We support KANDU financially and with some in-kind donations, I've done numerous Rock Soccer Club sponsorships and offered free shredding to the community where 50 percent of the proceeds benefited ECHO, KANDU and Friends of Noah, a local animal rescue."

OfficePro also allows Friends of Noah to use some of its warehouse space for donated pet food storage and distribution.

"I'm working with directors and individuals I know who are doing a good job," Arn said.

"We don't think we're special at all, just a small business that feels blessed by a community that has continued to support us," he said.

Den Boer sees it differently.

"I've been here almost nine years," he said. "OfficePro is very consistent in supporting community initiatives and in this case the Y. I sincerely appreciate Jamin's effort and the support for the Y.”

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