Class of 2022
Starting off as a maintenance technician when he was just 17, Dwayne Hallan has dedicated his entire career to Long Grove Confectionery Co. and currently serves as vice-president of production and innovation.
Dwayne was born on November 1, 1960, in Libertyville, IL, to Willian and JoAnn. He attended Mundelein High School from 1974 until 1978 and later went on to receive a management degree from the College of Lake County, in Grayslake, IL.
He has held a number of roles within Long Grove Confectionery during his tenure, including production supervisor, operations manager and director of operations. In his current role, he oversees the day-to- day operations of the entire organization, which includes production, purchasing, sales, shipping and receiving, HR and retail operations.
Under his leadership, the company has undergone two major expansions turning what once was a 2,500-square-foot retail store into an 85,000-square-foot facility. The expansion allowed the company to scale and increase profitability and it is now capable of producing in excess of 50,000 pounds of confectionery each day.
Dwayne spearheaded the installation of enrobers and large tanks, which improved efficiency and increased production, and helped design a factory tour to show consumers and industry insiders how the company’s confectionery products are created, including the cooking of caramel, chocolate enrobing and moulding, and packaging.
Dwayne has been a member of the Candy Production Club of Chicago for seven years and co-hosted the organization’s first annual Food Packing and Holiday Cheer charity event to benefit Rise Against Hunger and The Greater Chicago Food Depository. He has also been active in AACT Chicago and Retail Confectioners International for 20 years.
Giving back to his community, Dwayne volunteers at the local library and various elementary, middle and high schools where he talks to kids about how chocolate is made. Within the historic Village of Long Grove, he has organized annual festivals for more than 30 years, including Chocolate Fest, Strawberry Fest and Apple Fest.
These events increase revenue for the village and local retail stores, and provide residents with the opportunity to learn how popular confectionery treats are created. Dwayne’s extensive skills in recipe development and formula creation led to him being called upon for a project documenting the candy industry in Chicago. He was tasked with recreating a Lanzi’s Candy recipe without using any of the original equipment. As a result of this project, a documentary titled “Shelf Life – The Story of Lanzi’s Candy” featured Dwayne as one of the people on the quest to recreate Lanzi’s cashew nut crunch.
Honesty, fairness and hard work are attributes Dwayne believes have led to his success. He says his ability to build a strong team that works together, his creativity, his ability to curate ingredients to help clients turn their ideas into reality, and his passion all play a role in his longevity in the confectionery industry.
Dwayne currently lives in Wauconda, IL, with his wife Jody, who he met on a blind date. Together they have three children: Nicole, Eric and Ashton, and one grandchild. When he is not working, he enjoys sporting clays, woodworking and golfing.