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Business Notes Sept. 9

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Desing hired as lab assistant at CLC

Eric Desing of Baxter was hired as a lab assistant in the diesel and heavy equipment technician and technology programs at Central Lakes College.

Desing will work 20 hours per week during the academic year in the part-time, seasonal position at the Staples campus.

From 2002-2012, Desing was a branch and service manager for Road Equipment Parts and Service, Brainerd. He has also worked for Transcom Parts and Service, Heartland Truck and Trailer, Hawkeye Truck and Equipment, and Inland Truck Parts.

He received an associate in applied science degree from Des Moines Area Community College, Ankeny, Iowa, in 1982.

Oeltjenbruns earns CNE status

Laura Oeltjenbruns of Brainerd, an associate degree nursing faculty member at Central Lakes College (CLC), recently completed the requirements to attain the designation of Certified Nursing Educator (CNE).

“The certification process is rigorous,” said Connie Frisch, CLC director of nursing. It is offered through the National League of Nursing.

Oeltjenbruns is a 2002 graduate of the CLC Nursing program and a 1999 graduate of Brainerd High School.

CRMC gains Women’s Choice Award

CROSBY — Cuyuna Regional Medical Center (CRMC) received the Women’s Choice Award from WomenCertified distinguishing it as one of the 2012 America’s Best Hospitals for Patient Experience.

The award is based on robust criteria that consider female patient satisfaction and what women say they want from a hospital, including quality physician communications, responsiveness of nurses and support staff, cleanliness and trusted referrals from other women.

This is the second consecutive year the medical center was awarded the honor, John Solheim, CEO of CRMC, said in a news release adding the award demonstrates CRMC is keeping the patient experience at the forefront.

Women make or influence more than 90 percent of healthcare decisions for themselves and their families, according to a study published by the American Academy of Family Physicians.

The scoring incorporates a national, standardized survey of patients’ perspectives of hospital care reported by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems) and an analysis that weighs criteria identified as the most important to women for patient satisfaction. Additionally, the scoring incorporates WomenCertified’s in-depth research on customer satisfaction among women, including a joint study on customer satisfaction by gender conducted with the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. The 100 best scores in four hospital size categories determine the Award winners. WomenCertified reports it accepts absolutely no payment in exchange for placement on the list.

Jindra, Digiovanni attend

international conference

Brenda Jindra and Tanya Digiovanni were two of about 1,500 attending the International Association of Administrative Professionals (IAAP) Educational Forum and Annual Meeting in Grapevine, Texas.

The week-long international gathering featured keynote speakers, educational workshops, association business, and leadership development. Jindra acted as delegate for the Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota division and Digiovanni acted as delegate for the Brainerd chapter during the association’s formal international business meeting.

Jindra, Brainerd, will serve as the 2012-2013 president of the division. She was installed at the division’s annual meeting held in Roseville. She has been a member of the IAAP and the Brainerd chapter since 1998. She previously served as the division’s secretary, treasurer, and president-elect, and she has served as the Brainerd chapter’s president. She also co-chaired the 2011 Division Annual Meeting which was hosted in Brainerd. The division currently has 16 chapters and 495 members.

Jindra is currently grants compliance manager with the Mille Lacs Band of Objibwe.

Digiovanni was one of 19 recipients awarded a scholarship offered to first-time participants by the IAAP Research & Education Foundation. This is the first year the Research & Education Foundation has awarded scholarships. Digiovanni addressed participants on behalf of the scholarship winners during the event’s annual closing banquet.

Digiovanni, Breezy Point, is the land listing and closing coordinator at Close-Converse. She has been a member of the IAAP and the Brainerd chapter since 2008; obtained designation as a certified administrative professional-organizational management in 2009; served as president of the Brainerd chapter for the year 2010-2011; and currently serves as chair of membership, nominations, and public relations/webmaster for the Brainerd chapter.


Event explores Crosslake business climate

CROSSLAKE — Find out what Crosslake’s business community is all about from 8 to 9 a.m., Tuesday, at Golden Horizons Assisted Living Center, 13631 East Shore Road, Crosslake. The Brainerd Lakes Chamber invites members and future members who have an interest in the Crosslake business environment to the Chamber’s Explore Crosslake Business Committee meetings. The purpose of the Explore Crosslake Business Committee is to create programs that ultimately promote or provide exposure for Crosslake businesses; encourage volunteerism within the business community to have a more active role in promoting Crosslake; encourage educational components to bring a greater benefit to our businesses; increase regular attendance at monthly meetings; and continue to grow our successful Crosslake events, such as WinterFest, St. Patrick’s Parade & Celebration, Retail Tour, Crosslake in Bloom, Fourth of July and Crosslake Days.

Bremer Bank-Brainerd hosts

Business After Hours

Bremer Bank-Brainerd is hosting a Business After Hours event from 5 to 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, at 321 South Seventh St., Brainerd.

The networking event includes hors d’oeuvres and beverages.

Chamber members are invited to register and attend this free event. Advanced registration is recommended. For more information, call 829-2838.

ChamberNet lead-sharing

group hosts open house

BAXTER — ChamberNet, a lead-sharing group, will host an open house from 7:15 to 8:30 a.m. Thursday, at Country Inn & Suites in Baxter.

Any business person interested in joining a lead-sharing group is invited to attend this informational meeting. The objective is to build strong partnerships with participating member businesses and provide consumer referrals. Guests are welcome to attend up to two meetings before joining. Traditional ChamberNet meetings are held from 7 to 8:30 a.m. the second and fourth Thursdays each month at Mills Ford of Baxter.

Lakewood Health System

Rehab Department Open House

STAPLES — The Rehabilitation department at Lakewood Health System will be having an open house 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., Sept. 19, in the Rehab department on the lower level of the main campus.

Refreshments will be served for the event, which includes celebration of National Rehab Awareness Week, which is Sept. 16-22.

For more information, contact Emily Waldahl at 218-894-8579 or


Mille Lacs Band Of Ojibwe donates $58,880

ONAMIA — The Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe donated $58,880 in monetary and in-kind contributions to a variety of nonprofit organizations and other charitable causes in July. Each month the band and its businesses make contributions to community organizations including schools, hospitals, law enforcement agencies, food shelves, and others in Minnesota and nationwide.

The Mille Lacs Band contributed $1,000 to the Epilepsy Foundation of Minnesota to support the expansion of the Seizure Smart Communities Initiative to make all communities of 15,000 people or more in rural Minnesota and eastern North Dakota “seizure smart.” In order to achieve this, community leaders, members and schools in these regions must receive adequate training about how to respond to a seizure.

The band also donated $1,000 each to several outdoor construction projects in July including the construction of a new basketball court at Unity North Church in Coon Rapids, a new outdoor sports pavilion for the Friends of Camp Knutson program in Crosslake, and a new fence at St. Michael’s Church in Buckman.


Initiative Foundation hosts

Grocery Store/Co-op workshop

LITTLE FALLS — In an effort to emphasize the importance of grocery stores, especially in rural areas, the Initiative Foundation is hosting the Save Your Hometown Grocery Store workshop from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., Wednesday, in Little Falls.

Participants will hear from industry experts as they present information about organizing and financing food cooperatives and other ownership models. A panel of rural grocers will also share their experiences and lessons learned.

“When local grocery stores close, people are forced to travel farther and/or buy less healthy, fresh food. If this happens, the odds are good that other businesses in the community will also experience declining sales,” said Don Hickman, vice-president for community and economic development at the Initiative Foundation, in a news release. “For many rural towns, a locally-owned grocery store or co-op can be their primary anchor business.”

Community and business leaders who are interested in establishing or sustaining grocery and food retail in rural areas are especially encouraged to attend. Registration is $25 and includes lunch and materials. To register, visit: or contact Sharon Gottwalt at 320-632-9255 or Deadline to register is Friday.

‘Serving It Safe’ is offered Sept. 20 in Brainerd

A ‘Serving It Safe’ review course will be hosted from 5 to 9 p.m., Sept. 20, in the Business and Industry Center at Central Lakes College, Brainerd.

This course provides four hours of continuing education for certified food managers. It will address food sanitation and safety, emerging trends in food preparation and handling sanitation and prevention of food-borne illness.

Colette Pohlkamp is the instructor. Tuition is $70.

Deadline to register is Thursday.

Participants may park in the main entrance parking lot near the Business & Industry Center at Central Lakes College, 501 W. College Drive. Enter Door #6 (Business and Industry Center). Register for this workshop online at and click on courses. For more information, email or call 800-933-0346, ext. 8142, or 855-8142.

Workshop to explore Exporting Basics and Beyond

LITTLE FALLS — Exporting Basics and Beyond is the subject of a workshop from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Oct. 12 at the Initiative Foundation, 405 First St. Southeast, Little Falls.

In just the second quarter of 2012, exports in Minnesota’s manufacturing, mining and agricultural industries reached a record $5.4 billion, up $64 million from the same period a year ago.

Katie Clark, Minnesota Trade Office executive director, is the keynote speaker. Earl Potter, St. Cloud State University president, plans to lead a panel of business leaders as they share their first-hand experiences, and a group of partner organizations plan to provide one-on-one access to their wealth of planning and financial resources.

The event is hosted by the Initiative Foundation and Minnesota Trade Office.

How to submit a business note

The Dispatch welcomes business notes submissions via email to, or online at or by fax to (218) 829-0211, by mail to Brainerd Dispatch, P.O. Box 974, Brainerd, MN 56401 or use the drop-off box in the alley next to the Dispatch building on James Street.

Questions are welcome to Renee Richardson at 855-5852.

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