Weather Forecast




Mille Lacs Band appoints Palomaki

ONAMIA — The Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe named Michele Palomaki as assistant commissioner of administration.  

She was sworn into office on Aug. 12.

Palomaki will act in a deputy-level capacity to the commissioner of administration to help manage the day-to-day operations of the Mille Lacs Band government.

Palomaki joined the Mille Lacs Band in 2001, first serving in the office of management and budget. Most recently, she was the director of Circle of Health, a program that pays for deductibles, copays and health insurance premiums for Band members. Before working for the band, Palomaki was in several positions in the accounting and medical industries in Michigan. 

Palomaki has an associate of science degree from Northern Michigan University and an associate of arts degree from Central Lakes College.

The Corporate Commission reappointed board member Band member Arlene Weous, who was sworn in as a District I member of the Mille Lacs Band’s Corporate Commission Board of Directors on Aug. 12. Weous previously was one of two at-large positions on the board since 2006. 

Dolezal, Miles join CTC

Consolidated Telecommunications Co. recently announced Eddie Dolezal and Chris Miles joined the company.

Dolezal joined CTC as assistant network engineer. He graduated from MSCTC (Wadena) with a degree in telecommunication engineer and technology, and has more than seven years of experience as an engineer with Cooperative Network Services and Compass Consultants Inc. As network engineer, Dolezal will lead all new fiber optic staking processes, in addition to keeping the CTC network maps and records up to date. 

Miles joined CTC as a network analyst I. Previously he was a part-time employee at CTC for one year as a systems administrator intern. Miles has his degree in network administration and has past experience working at Best Buy.  

Bristow gains promotion to program director

PINE RIVER — Happy Dancing Turtle, Pine River, announced the promotion of Steffanie Bristow to program director.

Bristow joined the firm in 2006.  

Bristow will be working to foster the growth and development of HDT programs and activities in local and surrounding communities. .

Zupko named LF outstanding employee

LITTLE FALLS — Carrie Zupko was named Little Falls Area Chamber of Commerce Outstanding Service Committee Employee of the Month for September. 

Zupko is an office operations manager at the St. Francis Campus Credit Union. She started working there in November of 1996. Zupko was described as being willing to take on new challenges and someone who possesses a vast knowledge of the operation. 

Satre joins Deerwood Technologies

Shelly Satre joined Deerwood Technologies as service/project coordinator.

Satre has 10-plus years experience in technology support and 20 plus years of customer service experience in retail and technology business models.  

Her education includes majoring in mass communications at Bemidji State University; travel agent certification from Carlson Travel Academy, Bloomington; and A+, Microsoft, and Cisco certifications from Connecting Point ITS, Duluth.

Podiatrist begins serving Aitkin, Crosby communities

Cuyuna Regional Medical Center and Riverwood Healthcare Center announced a new podiatry services with the addition of Dr. Bradley McCusker, podiatrist. 

McCusker will begin seeing patients in Aitkin and Crosby in early September.

McCusker, an Iowa native, obtained his bachelor’s degree from Minot State University from the Iowa Physician Assistant Program, and his doctor of podiatric medicine degree from the College of Podiatric Medicine and Surgery in Des Moines. Board-certified in foot surgery, he has 19 years of experience in treating patients with a variety of foot problems. He has lived and provided foot care to the people of Minot, N.D, and Iowa City, Iowa.

McCusker will be moving to the Aitkin/Crosby area soon. His brother, Shawn McCusker, works as a pharmacist at Riverwood’s hospital in Aitkin.

Ketchum joins LarsonAllen as staff accountant 

Brendin Ketchum recently joined LarsonAllen, Brainerd, as a full-time staff accountant after successfully completing his internship with LarsonAllen last tax season. 

Ketchum graduated from Bemidji State University in May 2011 majoring in accounting and business administration with emphases in accounting information systems and finance. 


CLC offers QuickBooks Pro accounting class

Central Lakes College has scheduled a two-night, computerized QuickBooks Pro Accounting Basic course of the Brainerd campus.

The first opportunity is  6 to 9 p.m. Sept. 7 and Sept. 14 and the second will be Nov. 9 and Nov. 16. All run from in C221 and cost $99.

This class will provide the basic skills necessary to implement computerized accounting using Quickbooks Pro. The student will learn the basics of system set up, chart of account customization, item detailing, invoicing (accounts receivable), cash receipts, deposits and bill paying (accounts payable). The instructor is Jay Bock.

Please register at least seven days in advance.

For more information, call (800) 933-0346 ext. 8142 or 855-8142, or email, with online registration at

Boiler operation workshop scheduled at CLC

A 15-hour boiler operator exam preparation workshop will be held Mondays and Thursdays starting Sept. 15 in the Business and Industry Center (Entrance No. 6) at Central Lakes College in Brainerd.

This course offers attendees an opportunity to prepare for taking the special and second class boiler exams. Instruction will include industry attendance requirements for heating Boilers, safety issues and state boiler rules.

Dave Horn is the instructor for the class, which meets Sept. 15, 19, 22, 26, and 29 from 6 to 9 p.m. 

The fee is $165. Please register at least seven days in advance. For more information, call (800) 933-0346, ext. 8142 or 855-8142, or email

Online registration is available at


HealthSource offers free health check 

BAXTER — HealthSource, 7656 Design Road, Suite 100, Baxter, is recognizing National Cholesterol Education Month by offering a free Health Check throughout the month of September.

The Health Check includes a blood pressure check, a Body Mass Index analysis, postural analysis, the “HealthSource Simple Steps to Lower Your Cholesterol and Weight” booklet.

Nominees sought for annual Minnesota Pork Board awards

 The Minnesota Pork Board is seeking nominees for its annual award program recognizing individuals, families and groups who have made important contributions to the state’s pork sector. The five award categories are distinguished service, environmental steward, pork family of the year, pork promoter of the year and swine manager of the year.

Nominations may be made by anyone — individual pork producers, county pork associations, allied industry and agribusiness members, and pork producers’ neighbors and friends. The applications are available online at or by calling the MPB office at (800) 537-7675. Nominee applications may be submitted even if you are unable to complete all the questions on the form. Award categories are: Distinguished service, environmental steward, family of the year, pork promoter of the year, swine manager of the year. 

 The deadline to return the nomination forms is Oct. 3. The winners will be recognized at the 2012 Minnesota Pork Congress. For additional information on the program, contact MPB Director of Education Jill Resler, at (800) 537-7675 or

MPCA enforcement actions total more than $470,000

The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency concluded 47 enforcement cases totaling $474,720 in penalties during the second quarter of 2011. 

The cases occurred at facilities in 33 counties throughout Minnesota, including  area cases: $45,675 — Cass County Highway Department, Tri-City Paving, Pine River, for stormwater violations; $5,500 — City of Long Prairie wastewater treatment facility, Long Prairie, for water-quality violations; $1,000 — George Sandy, Long Prairie, for individual-septic-treatment-system violations.

Conditions slowly improving at Minnesota banks

MINNEAPOLIS — Profits and growth remain weak at Minnesota banks, but conditions are slowly improving, according to a Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis report based on June 30 data from the 375 banks in the state. 

“Banking conditions in Minnesota improved at a gradual pace in the second quarter of 2011,” said Ron Feldman, senior vice president for Supervision, Regulation and Credit at the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, in a news release. “There was a small improvement in overall asset quality, but critical metrics like earnings and loan growth remain weak. This quarter was better than last quarter, but the pace of improvement remains slow.” 

Asset quality improved overall and was similar to the previous quarter for commercial real estate loans and loans to finance construction and land development. However, asset quality measures in Minnesota were worse than those in the country overall. 

Measures of earnings-the return on average assets and net interest margin-increased slightly for Minnesota banks, but remain around the same level as in the nation. The year-over-year change in the amount of outstanding loans for Minnesota banks was nearly -5 percent. The same figure for the nation was about -2 percent.

There was continued improvement in the capital and liquidity position of Minnesota banks. Total risk-based capital increased by less than half a percentage point to about 14.5 percent. Banks in Minnesota increased their use of stable funding.

Denton (Denny) Newman Jr.
I've worked at the Brainerd Dispatch with various duties since Dec. 7, 1983. Starting off as an Ad Designer and currently Director of Audience Development. The Dispatch has been an interesting and challenging place to work. I'm fortunate to have made many friends, both co-workers and customers.
(218) 855-5889