Biz buzz for Feb. 6, 2012

HIRES AND PROMOTIONS Andrea Williams was named the regional sales and marketing representative at Fitger's Brands LLC Coffee Co. in Duluth. She works with prospective companies and purchasers at many regional locations and nearly all supermarkets...



  • Andrea Williams was named the regional sales and marketing representative at Fitger's Brands LLC Coffee Co. in Duluth. She works with prospective companies and purchasers at many regional locations and nearly all supermarkets. Williams is a Duluth native and attended the University of Wisconsin-Superior. She previously was a manager for many years at Black Woods Grill and Bar in Duluth.

  • Mary Anderson, a certified management accountant, was promoted to controller at Members Cooperative Credit Union. She supervises all aspects of the accounting department, oversees the preparation of financial statements, periodic reconciliations, and internal and external reporting. Anderson joined MCCU in 2007 as staff accountant. She is a graduate of the

    University of Minnesota Duluth, Labovitz School of Business, and has completed LEAN Certification through Lake Superior College. She also is a member of the Institute of Management Accountants, the Professional Women's Network and is a volunteer first responder for Kerrick Fire and Rescue.

  • Range Mental Health Center announced the following new hires. Connie Larson was named director of human resources and will work out of the W.J. Bell Building in Virginia. Larson earned a master's

    degree in management from the College of St. Scholastica, her senior professional in human resources certification from the Human

    Resource Certification Institute and a basic safety certificate from the Minnesota Safety Council. She serves as director-elect of Minnesota Society of Human Resource Management State Council and is a past board member of the United Way of Northeast Minnesota and Arrowhead Human Resources Association.

    Celin Manlove, an Ely native, joined RMHC as an outpatient therapist at the Gov. Rudy Perpich Building in Hibbing. Manlove, a licensed graduate social worker, earned her bachelor's

    degree in social work from Bemidji (Minn.) State University and her master's degree in social work from the University of North Dakota. She has experience in geriatrics and health-care settings, has worked with Fairview Grief Services in Minneapolis and continues in its mission by volunteering at Camp Erin.

    Range Mental Health Center also welcomed the following additions to staff over the last quarter of 2011: Caryn Walters and Nicolette Cook in the ADAPT program; registered nurses Angela Bowman and April Monetti; licensed practical nurses Melissa Mayry and Vanessa Hirsch; Russel Jones joined the Hibbing kitchen; mental health practitioners Michael Koskela and Heather Hashey; human service technicians Stephanie Ebnet and Victoria Londo; and administrative assistant Susan Garrett.

  • The Minnesota Medical Foundation at the University of Minnesota hired Heather Heart to serve as director of development for the Medical School-Duluth campus. Heart has 17 years of fundraising and public relations experience and will be responsible for fundraising initiatives critical to the Duluth campus. Heart, of Superior, previously spent eight years as the director of university advancement with the University of Wisconsin-Superior Foundation. She also has been a self-employed fundraising consultant, served as the director of major gifts with the College of St. Scholastica, worked in media relations with the Marshfield Clinic Health System and in the Wisconsin State Legislature.

    She holds a bachelor's degree in political science and communications from Carroll University in Waukesha, Wis.


  • Tick Tock Benefits announced agent Lisa Winter reached her Tier 4 Sales Award in January.
  • The American Society of Training and Development participated in a program to enhance the learning opportunities for employees nationwide. The ASTD Lake Superior Chapter has been awarded the Champion of Learning Certificate for putting in place a program that sent out motivational, educational e-mails each morning during the week of Dec. 5-9 to more than 200 employees in Duluth, Superior and surrounding areas.
  • Dennis W. Archer was named the Members Insurance and Investments Financial Advisor of the Month from CUNA Mutual Group. The award is presented to individuals who demonstrate sales success with Members Annuities from CUNA Mutual Insurance Society, Members Mutual Funds and Members Managed Accounts, as well as a passion for meeting the investment and insurance needs of their clients.

    Archer is a financial advisor with the Superior Choice Credit Union's Retirement and Financial Advisors program in Superior and the Life Time Financial Services Program at Minnesota Power Employees Credit Union in Duluth.

  • The Minnesota Association for Children's Mental Health awarded Kris Lofgren with an Outstanding Service Award for extraordinary achievement and/or leadership in the field of children's mental health. Award recipients will be celebrated during the MACMH's Fine Art and Award Celebration on Friday at William Mitchell College of Law in St. Paul. Lofgren has served children and families in northern Minnesota for nearly

    20 years. She is employed by Range Mental Health Center in Virginia as director of school and community-based children's mental health services.

    In 1992 while working at RMHC, she developed and directed a new school-based mental health program named Accept Differences and Pull Together, which today provides child and family services in 13 school districts throughout the Arrowhead Region. Lofgren was instrumental in designing the integrated funding model to support the school-based services of ADAPT.

  • Erik Peterson, a financial representative with Country Financial in Virginia, earned a position on the insurance group's distinguished All American team for the 15th consecutive year. Peterson also was named to the Executive Club and Agent Advisory committee in 2011.

    The All American is awarded each year to agency managers and financial representatives who have excelled in identifying insurance products and financial solutions that fit the needs of their clients.

  • Chester Creek Technologies in Duluth earned Bronze Awards in the third annual New Product and Technology Awards program presented by the Mature Market Resource Center. The program, a national clearinghouse for the senior market, is the first awards program of its kind to recognize the most innovative products and services for older adults and their families.

    The Bronze Awards were received for Chester Creek's Wireless VisionBoard and Wireless Mouse Bundle, and the Large-Key Numeric Keypad, both listed under the category of Computer Technology.

    Chester Creek Technologies manufactures an innovative line of large-key and standard-key computer keyboards, small mice, headphones and headsets, a large-key standalone numeric keypad, and more for any age and any ability.

  • Ron Tondryk was named top listing and selling agent for December by Coldwell Banker East West Realty in Cloquet.

  • Denise Ducart of Coldwell Banker East West Realty Superior was named top selling and listing agent of 2011. CLERGY

  • The Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago announced the Rev. David Carlson of Gloria Dei in Duluth was awarded the Excellence in Parish Ministry Award for 2012. The award is presented to distinguished alumni in various categories and its legacy institutions who have distinguished themselves in faithful service to the Gospel and to the body of Christ.

    Carlson will receive the award in March.


  • Women's Health Center of Duluth has met all criteria for Laboratory Accreditation by COLA, a national health-care accreditation organization. Accreditation is given only to laboratories that apply rigid standards of quality in day-to-day operations, demonstrate continued accuracy in the performance of proficiency testing and pass a rigorous on-site laboratory survey.

    Women's Health Center of Duluth has earned the accreditation as a result of a long-term commitment to provide quality service to its patients. Women's Health Center of Duluth also passed the validation survey by the Minnesota Department of Health and is in compliance with the Clinical Laboratory Improvement Act.

  • Rosella Bradley of the Community Health Informative Collaborative in Duluth graduated from the Nonprofit Administration Certificate Program offered through the Center for Continuing Education/

    Extension at the University of Wisconsin-Superior.

    The program provides training specific to managing a not-for-profit organization or government agency. Participants complete 14 to 17 full-day workshops (a minimum of 100 hours of training) aimed at strengthening their skills in a variety of areas including: strategic planning, financial management, fundraising, human resources and

    program evaluation.


  • Grand Rapids State Bank re-appointed its board of directors during the bank's annual meeting Jan. 25. Steven M. Wilcox remains chairman of the board, while Noah W. Wilcox was elected president and CEO and vice chairman of the board. Joseph C. Maher, Stephen R. Welliver and Edward M. Zabinski were elected directors for a one-year term.

    Steven Wilcox has been associated with Grand Rapids State Bank since 1964 and serves as president of the bank holding company, Wilcox Bancshares Inc.

    Noah Wilcox joined the bank full time in 1999 and was elected to the board of directors in 2005. He serves on the executive committee of the Independent Community Bankers of America; as vice chairman of the Independent Community Bankers of Minnesota; as a board member of ICBA Bancard, and locally as chairman of the Grand Rapids Area Community Foundation.

    Welliver, a lifelong Grand Rapids resident, is the principal of Wellson Group Inc. and has served Grand Rapids State Bank as a director since 1996. He is president of the city of Grand Rapids Public Utilities Board.

    Maher is the general manager at UPM-Blandin Paper, a position he has held since 2000. He serves as vice chairman of the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce and Minnesota Forest Industries.

    Zabinski has served on the Grand Rapids State Bank board of directors since 1996 and has worked as an employee since January 2008. During his career he has operated a consulting practice and co-founded a software development company. Before those ventures he worked 20 years at Blandin Paper Co. in various management roles. He was elected to a seat on the Grand Rapids City Council in November 2008 and serves as a trustee of the Northland Foundation in Duluth and as a board member for Northspan.


  • Complete Nutrition, an upscale nutritional supplement retail store, has opened in Suite 200 of 1405 Miller Trunk Highway, next to Buffalo Wild Wings. Complete Nutrition stores employ certified personal trainers, former strength coaches and other experienced fitness professionals to best assist

    customers in developing personalized nutrition programs.

    Store hours are 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday; 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday; and noon to 6 p.m. Sunday. The phone number is (218) 722-1817.


  • Vein Clinic PA will hold a grand opening celebration from 2-4 p.m. Feb. 13 at 1804 Maple Grove Road in Duluth. Refreshments will be served, and tours will be provided. Vein Clinic is Duluth's first and only medical practice to offer laser treatments for varicose veins. The clinic's vein specialists use ultrasound and laser technology to treat the diseased veins.

    The telephone number is (800) 955-VEIN (8346) and the website is VeinClinic


  • The American Society of Association Executives announced Karen Rockwell, formerly of Duluth, earned the certified association executive credential. The CAE is the highest professional credential in the nonprofit association industry. Fewer than 5 percent of all association professionals earn the CAE. Rockwell got her start with Grandma's Marathon and has spent more than

    15 years in the nonprofit

    sector. She received her bachelor's degree in public relations from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire and a master's degree in nonprofit management from Hamline University in St. Paul. She is executive

    director of the Chippewa Valley Home Builders Association in Eau Claire, Wis.

    Biz Buzz is a collection of business news tidbits from around the region. Send your business openings or closings, personnel changes or other news of interest in the business community to Biz Buzz, Duluth News Tribune, 424 W. First St., Duluth, MN 55802, e-mail biz@duluth, or fax (218) 720-4120.

  • Related Topics: BIZ BUZZ
    What To Read Next
    Bankruptcy information gathered from cases filed in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Duluth.
    Recently sold properties from St. Louis County.
    While traffic has roughly doubled since 2020 — the heart of the pandemic, when there were 14.9 million passengers — it’s still not at pre-pandemic levels: In 2019, there were 39.6 million passengers.
    The addition of 72 Poplar River Condos units nearly doubles the vacation rental company's North Shore portfolio.