Salem Area Chamber Of Commerce Announces CEO
The Salem Area Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors announced today that Dan Clem has been selected to serve as the organization’s chief executive officer.
Clem has experience with local and state government legislative affairs, small business administration, economic development projects, as well as membership and association management. He previously served as the Director of the Oregon Department of Aviation, and as a Salem City Councilor for Ward 8 for more than 10 years. Most recently, he served as the legislative affairs coordinator for the Oregon State Chambers of Commerce.
“We’re excited to have such a long-standing community servant with a passion for our region and our mission,” said Salem Chamber Board President Brent DeHart.
“I am excited how strong this Chamber of Commerce is, in membership and community leadership,” said Clem. “We are about people earning a good living, developing future leaders and qualified employees, advocating for our businesses, and leading the charge in future planning and quality of life in the Salem area. I sit on the shoulders of giants before me – and am grateful for the trust and confidence that Chamber leadership has in me.”
Clem replaces Jason Brandt, who stepped down earlier this year to take the position of President and CEO at the Oregon Restaurant and Lodging Association.
Fitness No-Brainer Redux
Landon and his wife Aubrey
with their son Gage Burningham
I wrote my original column on Landon Burningham and his PhysiQ Fitness Club last July. Now that a year has passed and I’ve experienced the club 5 to 6 times a week every week during that year, I’m ready to grade its performance. But first, let me recap a few things.
Burningham’s life goal is to be able to train people in physical fitness for free! Especially people who have a hard time making ends meet. Yes, that’s right. His life’s goal is to be able to train people in physical fitness for FREE!
A lofty goal indeed, but don’t underestimate this now 30 year old energetic young man. What he’s done so far is quite remarkable. And, what started as just an idea inside a Gold’s Gym in Utah in 2004 has resulted in not one but two impressive fitness centers here in Salem.
PhysiQ Fitness membership has grown exponentially since the opening of gym number one in downtown Salem in July, 2010. Membership growth at the South Commercial site in the past 12 months has increased by a whopping 50%! How could this upstart from Utah have pulled this off in a city already replete with fitness centers led by one that has five locations and a tennis facility? Here’s an update of the story I wrote a little over a year ago.
Landon Burningham is the founder, co-owner and head trainer of Physiq Fitness’ two clubs. He was born in Sandy, Utah in 1985.
His mom, Cheryl, aka Charlie, was primarily a home maker but also operated a cleaning business for a few years. In addition to that she helped Landon’s dad, Todd, with their construction company, “B Remodel”.
Burningham has a younger brother, Skylar, who works in the car business in Texas.
Landon participated in football, wrestling, and track and graduated from Alta High School in 2003. His relay team won the state championship when he was a junior. After high school, due to an illness, he took a year off from school.
In 2005, on a division 1 track and field scholarship, Burningham enrolled at Utah Valley University (UVU). He majored in exercise science and pre-med and ran the 200 meters, the 400 meters and the 4x400 meter relay in track. Among the numerous awards he received at UVU, was his 2005 (he qualified for it 3 separate times) selection as an NCAA Independent National All-American.
UVU is also where he met his wife, Aubrey Burningham, a Sprague High School athlete and 2004 graduate. And yes, Burningham, unbelievably, was her maiden name. What are the odds? Aubrey does education enrollment with Nationwide Financial. They met in 2007 and married in 2008. And she didn’t even have to change her name.
In Utah, Landon had been a personal trainer, then a master trainer inside the largest Gold’s Gym there until 2008. It was then that he first entertained the idea of a PhysiQ Fitness gym model. That same year they both quit school and moved to Salem to pursue their dream.
In Salem they lived with Aubrey’s parents, Randy and Brenda. To pay the bills, Landon provided physical fitness training in customer’s homes. Business grew. Incredibly, his entire arsenal of fitness equipment consisted of a single resistance band!
Eighteen months later, Landon returned to school at Western Oregon University majoring in exercise science with a minor in human biology.
In 2009, he rented space in Snap Fitness with the continued goal of owning his own gym.
In 2010, the Burningham’s had a horribly painful experience. Aubrey lost a baby. But good news came just 4 years later. Son, Gage, was born 11 months ago. And, there’s more. Aubrey is pregnant again with a due date of March 14th, 2016. It’s not been decided firmly yet, but they may have a “reveal party” on the sex of the baby sometime in the future. But back to my recap story.
Armed with financial backing from his in-laws and the help of his parents, a co-signed loan was granted. On July 31st, 2010, he bought the late Sam Monroe’s Downtown Fitness Center, next to the post office, from Sam’s mom, Linda. He remodeled it, added new equipment and renamed it PhysiQ Fitness, a gym that would provide a beautiful and cutting edge fitness experience. Joe Wales runs the downtown gym.
During those early days, Landon and Aubrey even shared a car in order to make ends meet. With the help of 3 others, he managed, trained and janitored the gym 6 days a week. With their strong Mormon faith, working on Sunday was never an option.
It was a very dark day in 2011 when, tragically, Aubrey’s mom and dad were both taken in a motorcycle accident. Landon had the awful task of breaking the news to Aubrey. It’s taken all of their collective resolve and religious faith to recover from that loss. But, with a huge hole in their hearts, life has gone on.
Inspired by TV’s “Biggest Loser”, Burningham’s goal and passion has always been to change people’s lives through physical fitness! His ultimate goal is, again, to be able to train people for free!
With unique branding to build a name recognized and respected in the Willamette Valley, on January 23rd 2014, following 3 years of planning, Burningham and his team opened a second PhysiQ Fitness in the old GI Joe’s spot at 4825 Commercial St. SE. And with this new gym came a greater opportunity to help more people in the community. He was thrilled and excited.
The South Commercial gym is managed by his old high school buddy, Brandon Bennett, who, years ago, got Landon his first training job back in Utah. They’re tight. Bennett is not only his best friend but was his best man at his wedding. Brandon, who was only 102 pounds in high school, (175 now) is also a competitive, all natural, body builder as you might guess when you look at his calves. He and wife, Haylee, have two children. Tyce is a 5 year old boy and Haven was just recently born on August 3rd.
Another old high school buddy, Austin Holman, is a trainer in the downtown gym.
Burningham’s and the PhysiQ Fitness philosophy is best summed up on their web site (physiqfitness.com) and I quote extensively: “PhysiQ Fitness is in the business of changing lives. In order to accomplish that, we needed to change the business. How have we done it? For too long a gym membership has been a luxury. PhysiQ believes that in order to help our community be more healthy then access to a health club is imperative. With rock bottom prices, fitness is available to all members of our community.
Dropping prices should not lead to the loss of all amenities. When a potential member walks into our club the goal is that they are surprised by just how far their money will take them. Want to keep your group classes? We have it. Access to a personal trainer? We pride ourselves in having some of the best trainers in the business.
But it does not end there. Look at our amenities and it will become evident that fitness in Salem, Oregon has been revolutionized! PhysiQ will never ask you to agree to a long term membership contract. We believe in keeping your business through professionalism, impeccable customer service and amenities that put you in awe, not by force.
The South Commercial PhysiQ has some very unique features. For instance, it’s the home of Oregon's first cardio theater, Q Max. This is the experience where cardio training meets ultimate entertainment. You can watch an entire movie while exercising in comfort.
Strength training faces the same cutting edge overhaul with new, incredible Hoist equipment that’s like nothing like you’ve seen before. Ask a member of team Physiq for details”. Unquote.
Lofty goals expressed there on their website and Landon Burningham believes they’re meeting them. He currently employs 24 people at the South Commercial club and 3 at the downtown club. He’s hired new personal trainers bringing the overall total to nine and is looking to hire two more. But that’s not all. They have just signed to expand the south club into the available area next to the club that will increase the total square footage by 3000 feet by the end of the year! His five year goal is to open yet another PhysiQ Fitness in Oregon, maybe Salem, and, more importantly, grow his family to, perhaps, 3 or 4 children.
He envisions his employee’s as members of an extended family patterned much like the teams you would see working at a Dutch Bro’s coffee stand where interaction between them and the customer is on a much more personal level. If you’ve been to a Dutch Bro’s stand, you know exactly what this means.
Burningham works hard to hire people who genuinely care about their customers and makes sure customers know that they are there to help them lead a healthy lifestyle. He emphasizes to his team members that they are not there to, “merely sell services”. And he’s quick to reward them for “a job well done”. He recently paid for his trainers to attend the L.A. Idea World Fitness Convention week because they all met their goals and earned a nice pay-off. Ninety percent of his staff has been there since opening day where they worked together through the freezing rain and cold to get the gym up and running.
He, Brandon and Austin ensure that their trainers are educated in the most advanced techniques in the industry as well as modified techniques based on injury or disability. They want to increase client retention through results based programs and more efficient communication between trainer and client.
Repeatedly, during the interview, Burningham stressed his appreciation for his business family who, he knows, has made PhysiQ the success that it is today. In fact, he insisted that I include this in the column: “I want to publicly thank all my trainers, front desk people, day-care staff and anyone else working for PhysiQ. You have all contributed to making our gyms successful for our customers and for us. Thank you!”
And all the hard work and commitment by Landon and his team has paid off, not only in incredible membership numbers but PhysiQ has, also, received a number of local awards.
Chief among all the awards bestowed upon them are the Statesman Journal “Best of the Mid-Valley” 2013, 2014, and 2015 Gold Awards for Best Fitness Center. That’s “Best Fitness Center” in the Mid-Willamette Valley for the last three years for two clubs that didn’t even exist a little over 5 years ago! They also received, not to be overlooked, the 2014 “Best Smoothie/Juice Gold Ward.
Other interests for this work-a-holic, besides 5 to 6 days at the gyms are coaching, boating, wake boarding, running competitions in open track meets, and of course, the most important priority to he and his family, participation in his Mormon Church, in particular, youth work. He’s a busy guy!
I’m a member of the South Commercial PhysiQ Fitness Club. One visit to the South gym last year blew my mind. I’d heard it was an unbelievable “no-brainer” membership fee but I had to see for myself what a small monthly fee was buying me. And, boy, did I! And it’s still true over a year later.
PhysiQ Fitness, has, overall, the best layout, the best and newest equipment on the market, and extremely friendly team members throughout the gym. But I have to cite one in particular because he’s earned it as far as I’m concerned. No matter what the workload, he speaks to me when I arrive and when I’m on my way out the door, without fail. Gill Salcido is the quintessential customer service leader every single time I go to PhysiQ Fittness. Thanks, Gill!
For the cost of two lattes, you can buy a month’s worth of fitness opportunity with NO CONTRACT!
Since that day, I’ve doubled my workouts, in large part because of the pleasure I have training in such a fine facility with such great people. I love PhysiQ Fitness!
The downtown PhysiQ has a slightly different fee structure than the South Commercial gym starting at $35 a month (still a major bargain), but you also have additional features built in such as, among other things, 24 hour access to your fitness training.
Burningham’s passion for fitness helping people is obvious when you meet him, and it does change their lives. He’s a “people person”! One last time, his life’s goal is to be able to train people in physical fitness for free! Don’t doubt that he can figure out a way to do that. It’s almost free right now. I went from paying $137 a month for a family membership at my previous gym to paying $20 a month for me and my daughter, Taylor! And, as I said earlier, I enjoy it so much that I have doubled my workouts which, according to my doctor, Laslo Kolta, has resulted in me being in my best physical shape in 25 years!
So, if you’re not a member of PhysiQ Fitness and you’re seeking a healthy lifestyle, what are you waiting for? Do yourself a favor. If nothing else, take a tour. Tell them, “Wild Bill sent me”. Afterwards, I think you’ll see what I saw. If you understand value, it’s a fitness no-brainer!
Bill Isabell is also chief meteorologist for KBZY Radio, Salem’s First Choice, 1490am
How a Salem Business
is Helping Change
the Way We Look at RV Parks
If you haven’t looked lately,
it’s time to change
your image of an RV
By Ryan Gail
When we think about RV (recreational vehicle) Parks, certain images may come to mind. Some preconceptions come from a misunderstanding of the RV lifestyle and some come from images on television. The idea of a “five-star RV park” would almost seem to be an oxymoron. However, this is the exact level of quality found at Phoenix RV Park on the corner of Silverton Road and Lancaster.
RV enthusiast, Todd Call, sought to provide his clients a five-star experience when he purchased Phoenix RV Park in 1997. Considered to be one of the best RV parks in the Northwest by leading RV ranking services, Phoenix RV Park offers travelers and monthly residents a large variety of amenities in a clean and safe environment. Many of the park’s services mirror the kind one would find in a hotel. Guests and residents of Phoenix RV Park have access to fitness centers, meeting rooms, wireless Internet, cable television, on-site laundromats, dog runs and a store to purchase needed RV supplies.
In addition to the rise of high quality RV facilities, RV living has seen a dramatic increase in quality. RVs are now beginning to mirror upscale apartments. “If you haven’t looked lately, it’s time to change your image of an RV,” says Call. “You can now live on wheels with all the amenities of home.” Modern RVs are far from the uncomfortable, low tech vehicles of yesteryear. “Today you can have every comfort with multiple flat screen TVs (with in-travel or mounted satellites), full showers, refrigerators, ice makers, unlimited hot water and more. The family type can sleep up to eight people. Higher-end fifth wheels and motor homes accommodate four people or a couple very comfortably.”
Call says that people from all walks of life utilize RV parks, like the one in Salem, to meet their lifestyle needs. Many RVers are retirees or couples who have bought an RV in order to travel more. RVs are also very attractive to people who work long-term jobs far from home. He added, “In fact, it isn’t uncommon to see a state legislator utilize RV living as a way to stay closer to the State Capitol.” People going through extensive house remodels also find RVs a good form of transitional housing. Todd Call notes that what people find most appealing about life in RV parks like Phoenix is its social nature, attracting residents and travelers alike. Call finds that most RVers are outgoing, adventurous and love to travel. This naturally leads itself to a strong sense of community. While RV life may not be for everyone, the improvements in quality created by the luxuries of modern trailers and a positive community sends the stereotypes of the lifestyle home packing.
Phoenix RV Park is located at 4130 Silverton RD NE in Salem. www.PhoenixRVPark.com or 503-581-2497.