Business Notes Dec. 13

CAREER Dens awarded fellowship in national organization Kevin Dens was awarded fellowship in the American College of Dentists on Nov. 5 during the organization's annual meeting and convocation in Washington, D.C. Dens practices as a partner at Co...


Dens awarded fellowship in national organization

Kevin Dens was awarded fellowship in the American College of Dentists on Nov. 5 during the organization's annual meeting and convocation in Washington, D.C. Dens practices as a partner at Cosmetic and Family Dentistry in Baxter.

The American College of Dentists is the oldest national honorary organization for dentists. It was founded in 1920 to recognize dentists who have made significant contributions to the advancement of dentistry. The mission of the American College of Dentists is to advance excellence, ethics, professionalism and leadership in dentistry. Fellowship in the College is by invitation and based on demonstrated leadership and contributions to the dental profession and society. Dens is also currently serving as president-elect of the Minnesota Dental Association which serves more than 3,000 dentists in Minnesota.




Highway 25 Liquor receives award

Paul "Cowboy" and Christa Andersen, owners of Highway 25 Liquor, located in northeast Brainerd, recently received Package store of the year award from the Minnesota Licensed Beverage Association.

The couple has owned the Highway 25 Liquor Store since 1997, have been members of the beverage association since 1998 and Paul Andersen has been a member of the board of directors since 2002. According to the association, the Andersens have never missed an association event and are always willing to help out their fellow fellow retailers. They consistently keep the membership updated regarding legislation and industry trends from central Minnesota.

HealthPartners Awards Essentia Health for Quality and Patient Involvement

Essentia Health's caregivers play a vital role in helping to make a healthy difference in people's lives. Recently, HealthPartners awarded Essentia primary care and pharmacy teams 11 awards for quality and innovation.

The awards celebrate medical, specialty and pharmacy groups for their innovative efforts to transform the healthcare delivery system. More than 34 entries were reviewed by a panel of healthcare professionals, as well as employer and patient representatives.

"This year's class of applicants builds upon an impressive body of work as healthcare teams work to achieve the Triple Aim," explains Dr. Andrew Zinkel , HealthPartners' medical director for quality. "It's all about improving health outcomes, increasing patient satisfaction and making healthcare more affordable. This group has proven that with hard work and collaboration, it's possible to achieve all three for our members and our patients."


Essentia Health's primary care efforts to increase patient participation in childhood immunizations received a Preventive Care Recognition Award. A goal to increase the number of children fully immunized by the age of 2 was established. Essentia teams locally increased that percentage from 75 to 83 percent.

The awards recognize clinics and health systems that perform well on Minnesota Community Measurement (MNCM) standards, HealthPartners quality metrics and the HealthPartners patient satisfaction survey.

The awards validate work being done across Essentia Health to improve the health and well-being of our patients, says Dr. Patrick Twomey, Chief Medical Officer. "It brings the goals of the Triple Aim - a better patient experience, improved population health and reduced costs - to life in the communities we serve."

CRMC Receives the 2016 Women's Choice Award

Cuyuna Regional Medical Center recently received the 2016 Women's Choice Award®as one of America's Best Hospitals for Obstetrics.

This evidence-based designation is the only award that identifies the country's best healthcare institutions based on robust criteria that consider female patient satisfaction, clinical excellence, and what women say they want from a hospital.

The list of over 400 award winners, including CRMC represents hospitals that offer exceptional obstetric services which ranked above the national average for patient safety, thereby supporting a woman's decision when choosing the best for her maternity needs.

"New moms have many choices when it comes to having their baby, so choosing the best birthing experience is right up there with choosing the best doctor. We've made it easy for moms to vet out the hospitals proven to deliver an outstanding experience," says Delia Passi, CEO and Founder of the Women's Choice Award.


The America's Best Hospitals for Obstetrics scoring process is unique in that it is the only national list that is evidence-based and focuses on female patient satisfaction. Awarded hospitals ranked above the national average for patient recommendations, as indicated by the data reported by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services in Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems surveys. Additional requirements included: having a NICU on-site, low rates of early elective deliveries (between 0-1%) as well as ranking above the national average for patient safety.

Go to for more information on the 2016 America's Best Hospitals for Obstetrics.


December event set for Young Professionals

Lakes Ignite: Brainerd Lakes Young Professionals is gearing up to celebrate the holiday season at their December event next week. The young professionals group, established in February of 2015, will be gathering at Shep's on 6th at 6 p.m. Dec. 17 to don their ugliest Christmas sweaters, celebrate Christmas and socialize with fellow emerging leaders in the Brainerd Lakes Area. Activities will include prize drawings for everyone in holiday apparel, entertaining games and the highlight of the night: a contest to find the "Ugliest Christmas Sweater."

The Lakes Ignite council wanted to gather everyone together in the spirit of the season for a night full of fun, celebrating the Brainerd Lakes Community and making new connections. The council consists of Elise Ristau (Atomic Learning), Aeli Wiebolt (Glynlyon, Inc.), Tom Whiteside (Office of Rep. Rick Nolan), Ashley Martel (Widseth Smith Nolting) and Chet Bodin (Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development).

Visit the group's Facebook page and events at , send an email to or get a business card, supported by Lakes Printing, from a council member for more information. Businesses looking to get involved are also welcome to contact us regarding hosting, sponsorships and employee outreach programs.

Lakes Ignite is a mixed group of young locals that range from new residents to those who grew up in the Brainerd Lakes. It was established to allow emerging leaders in the community an opportunity to meet (whether it be for business or personal reasons), to share their experience in the region, and try new things within the area. Lakes Ignite meets every third Thursday of the month at various locations.

The Women's Choice Award® sets the standard for helping women make smart choices through education, empowerment, and validation. Awards are determined by evidence-based research and identify the brands, products and services most recommended and trusted by women. Visit to learn more.


Otto Bremer Trust awards $8.4 million in grants

The Otto Bremer Trust, formerly the Otto Bremer Foundation, awarded $8,447,908 million in grants as part of its most recent grantmaking cycle.

The Otto Bremer Trust is a private charitable trust, established in 1944 by founder Otto Bremer, a successful banker and community and business leader. The trust is the 92 percent owner of Bremer Bank and also manages a diversified investment portfolio, and the returns on these holdings provide the funding for trust's grantmaking, which supports regional and local resources that benefit the communities that are home to Bremer banks.

"The variety of organizations and the diversity of grant requests we are funding is impressive,"

said Charlotte S. Johnson, co-CEO and Trustee, Otto Bremer Trust. "We are inspired by these organizations who are doing vital work every day in Bremer communities across three states."

Area projects include:

• Aitkin County Habitat for Humanity, Aitkin, $6,000. General operating support for administration and fund development to create affordable housing in Aitkin County.

• Mid-Minnesota Women's Center, Brainerd, $42,500 for emergency repairs to keep the shelter open.

• Legal Aid Service of Northeastern Minnesota, Duluth, $150,000 to provide civil legal services to low-income residents and establish a domestic violence court in Crow Wing County.

• Minnkota Health Project, Wadena, $20,100 for general operating support of the organization, which serves people living with HIV/AIDS in greater Minnesota.

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.

More business notes may be part of the Business Extra section in Monday's edition.

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