Katie Arnholt Kim: Renaissance Woman

Big-picture brilliance, sharp business acumen, and streamlined internal systems are just the beginning

July 13, 2015
Katie Arnholt Kim, CEO at The Kim Group, in Peoria, Ill., 2015 Professional Remodeler 40 Under 40 awardee

CEO

The Kim Group, Peoria, Ill.

Age 36

Katie is actually many people rolled into one: visionary leader, real estate professional, technology expert, designer, and construction manager. Her knowledge and business acumen have made The Kim Group a significant presence in its market. Yet it’s Katie’s management style that really keeps the company on track.

One example of many is the way she handles problems brought to her attention. Rather than simply give an answer, Katie will ask the team member for a solution. She will then talk through different ideas, and eventually it’s the employee, not Katie, who solves the issue. Next time a similar problem arises, the staff member will recall the conversation and make a decision based on that process. This has helped field crews become effective managers.

In addition to her big-picture brilliance, Katie’s computer science background allows her to streamline internal systems for increased efficiency, and her understanding of economic development has led her and her team to submit a proposal to restore a 1920 vaudeville theater with the goal of helping to revitalize downtown Peoria with energy, youth, and economic stimulus for local businesses. The proposal includes recommendations for rehabbing not only the theater but an adjacent lobby and storefront, as well as a nearby tower that would host retail establishments, a 250-room hotel, commercial offices, residential suites, and a parking garage. Katie has also outlined how several incentive programs could be leveraged to help finance the project, and she’s creating a 501(c)3 foundation to own and operate the theater as a “theater by the community for the community.” 

Read more about the 2015 Professional Remodeler 40 Under 40 awardees.

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