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Business Notes May 12


■ Atomic Learning gains award

LITTLE FALLS — The Software & Information Industry Association (SIIA) presented the 2013 CODiE Awards in education technology on May 6, during SIIA’s annual Ed Tech Industry Summit.

Atomic Learning’s Tech Skills Training Plus solution was named best postsecondary learning solution in its entry category, as well as being awarded two of the top overall awards, best postsecondary solution and best education solution.

Atomic Learning offers training on more than 250 education-specific software applications and devices to simplify campus technology integration, training and support.

“SIIA’s 2013 CODiE Award winners show that innovation and growth is alive in many areas of the educational technology industry,” said Karen Billings, vice president for the education division at SIIA, in a news release. “Among these 28 visionary winners, you’ll find many of the most exciting ed tech products and services out there.”

Overall, 28 winners were recognized for their products and services deployed specifically for the education technology market. SIIA is the principal trade association for the software and digital content industry. The organization provides global services in government relations, business development, corporate education and intellectual property protection to leading companies that are setting the pace for the digital age.

All of the education technology nominated products and services were reviewed by a group of tech-savvy educators from across the nation, whose evaluations determined 82 finalists. SIIA members then reviewed the finalists and voted to select 28 CODiE Award winners.

“We are extremely excited to be selected for these distinguished awards,” said Lisa Barnett, CEO of Atomic Learning. “We appreciate the efforts of the SIIA and are honored to accept these accolades.”

The SIIA CODiE Awards are the premier award for the software and information industries, and have been recognizing product excellence for 27 years. The awards include more than 75 categories organized by industry focus of Content, Education and Software.

■ First hospital in Minnesota to be recognized

Essentia Health-St. Joseph’s Medical Center is the first hospital in Minnesota to receive accreditation in hip fracture care from the Joint Commission.

Patients with hip fractures often are older and have other health issues, which makes their care even more challenging, said Dr. Benjamin Robertson, an orthopedic surgeon at Northern Orthopedics, St. Joseph’s partner in the Joint Wellness Center.

Part of the accreditation process tracked patients as they recovered at home and monitored the long-term impacts of their care at St. Joseph’s.

As the local population ages, the Brainerd hospital is treating more hip fractures. Essentia Health-St. Joseph’s Medical Center joins just 14 other hospitals in the entire country that have received the accreditation. The Joint Wellness Center was also recently renewed as a “Blue Distinction Center + for Knee and Hip Replacement” by Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota.

The not-for-profit Joint Commission is the nation’s oldest and largest standards-setting and accrediting body for healthcare organizations. To maintain the hip fracture care accreditation, St. Joseph’s will have ongoing on-site surveys and monitoring.

“This is a really strong collaborative effort from almost every department in our hospital,” said Christina Liane, St. Joseph’s Joint Wellness Center coordinator.

■ Thompson begins counseling practice

Andy Thompson, a licensed psychologist, started a counseling practice at Andy Thompson Counseling, 823 Kingwood St. Brainerd.

He sees adults, adolescents and children. Thompson has a master’s degree in community counseling from St. Cloud State University. He has been a licensed psychologist since 1990 and has been employed in the Brainerd area since that time.


■ MnDOT updates Pequot Lakes businesses, residents about 371 project

PEQUOT LAKES — The Pequot Lakes office of the Brainerd Lakes Chamber and the city of Pequot Lakes are inviting business representatives and community members to informational meetings with Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) officials regarding the Highway 371 four-lane expansion and realignment project.

Jim Hallgren, MnDOT project manager, will share information about right-of-way acquisition, construction schedule, design, accesses, and turn-back improvements.

Two meetings are scheduled May 30 at the Cole Memorial Building in downtown Pequot Lakes. The first meeting, intended for business representatives, will be at 5:30 p.m., and the second meeting, intended for community residents, will be at 6:45 p.m. Due to the limited time in both meetings, comments or questions will be limited to the targeted audience identified at the two meetings.

Advance registration is not required. Business questions about the meeting may be directed to Jenna Crawford, the chamber’s Pequot Lakes area director, at the Pequot Lakes Welcome Center or by calling 218-568-8911. Resident questions can be directed to Mayor Nancy Adams at Pequot Lakes City Hall or by calling 218-568-5222.

MnDOT is proposing a Highway 371 reconstruction project in 2018 that would expand and realign the highway in Pequot Lakes.

■ Camp Ripley’s museum to

host Friday Morning Coffee

LITTLE FALLS — The Little Falls Area Chamber of Commerce invites all chamber members, employees and guests to Minnesota Military Museum from 7:30-9 a.m. Friday at Camp Ripley, 15000 Highway 115, Little Falls, for Friday Morning Coffee.

Announcements are at 8:15 a.m. Sponsoring this month is Minnesota Military Museum and Col. Scott St. Sauver.

■ Nationstar Mortgage hosts

Business After Hours Tuesday

BAXTER — Nationstar Mortgage is hosting a Brainerd Lakes Chamber networking event Business After Hours from 4:30 to 6 p.m. Tuesday at 13432 Elmwood Drive, Suite 3, in Baxter.

The free event includes hors d’oeuvres and beverages. Chamber members are invited to register and attend. Advanced registration is recommended. For more information, call 822-7112.

■ Area young professionals

learn about personal finance

The Brainerd Lakes Chamber’s Lakes Vybe luncheon will next meet from noon to 1 p.m. Thursday at Holiday Inn Express Hotel & Suites, 15739 Audubon Way in Baxter.

During the May luncheon, Vybe members and guests will learn personal finance tips/budgeting and about improving fiscal fitness while enjoying pasta, salad and bread sticks. Cost for this event is $10.

The Lakes Vybe group links people ages 21 to 40 by offering educational programs and networking opportunities in order to enhance professional skills and create a sense of belonging within the business community.

For more information, contact Holly Holm at 822-7112 or

■ Brainerd Lakes Chamber

lead-sharing group meets May 23

The next meeting of ChamberNet is 7 to 8:30 a.m. Thursday, May 23, at Mills Ford, 14858 Dellwood Drive in Baxter.

Chuck Cole of Mills Ford will be the featured presenter.

ChamberNet is a lead-sharing group that meets the second and fourth Thursdays of each month. The objective is to build strong partnerships with participating member businesses and provide consumer referrals.

Cost is $75 annually, but Brainerd Lakes Chamber members are invited to attend up to two meetings free. For more information, email Matt Perrine at or call him at 822-7107.

■ Party Time Rental to

host May 23 CHOW luncheon

The staff at Party Time Rental is hosting a Brainerd Lakes Chamber CHOW luncheon from noon to 1 p.m. May 23 at 4750 White Gables Road off Highway 371 north of Brainerd.

During CHOW, Party Time Rental will provide chamber members with lunch, information about its business and door prizes.

Participants may register to win a private aerial tour of the Brainerd Lakes Area by float plane.

Cost to attend is $5. As a courtesy to the event host, all guests who are pre-registered by noon on the day before the event will be eligible for door prizes. For more information, contact Holly Holm at 822-7112 or


■ CenterPoint Energy

surpasses $1 million milestone

CenterPoint Energy’s Community Partnership Grant Program, a program that awards grants to local communities to fund safety-related equipment and projects, recently surpassed $1 million in donations. During the past 10 years, the program has helped communities throughout the company’s service area fund more than 500 projects designed to enhance their safety initiatives.

The Dispatch welcomes business notes submissions via email to, or fax to 218-829-0211, 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.
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