Change Ups: Bauer earns Trailblazer Award


Lakeshore Advantage president Jennifer Owens presents Fred Bauer with the Innovation Trailblazer Award.

Zeeland-based Gentex Corp. chairman and CEO Fred Bauer recently received the Innovation Trailblazer Award during Lakeshore Advantage’s annual meeting that celebrated innovation in West Michigan. Of the top ten manufacturing employers in Ottawa County over the past 30 years, Gentex steadily climbed to the top, rising from the 10th-largest manufacturing employer in Ottawa County in 1996 to the county’s largest manufacturing employer in 2016. Gentex develops products for the aerospace, fire protection and automotive industries.


Better Business Bureau Serving Western Michigan announced this year's recipients of its fourth annual Torch Awards for Ethics: Arie Nol Autor Center; Everdry Waterproofing; Trivalent Group; and YMCA West Central Michigan.

Experience Grand Rapids and the Kent County Hospitality Association announced the 2016 winners of the ninth annual Way Above Visitor Expectations Awards at the recent Impacting Hospitality Celebration: Restaurants & Breweries: Diego Calderon,; Lodging 150+ Rooms: Fayez Radwan, CTA, Amway Grand Plaza; Lodging Less than 150 Rooms: Iesha Young, Sleep Inn & Suites; Retail & Service: Erin Alley, Malamiah Juice Bar; Attractions & Events: Don Dekker, Meyer May House Steelcase Inc.; Volunteer in Hospitality: Tom McGrail, CTA, Experience Grand Rapids; and CTA Star of the Year: Norina Cadili, CTA, JW Marriott. The seven winners also will be nominated in their respective categories for the Stars of the Industry Awards.

Gilda’s Club Grand Rapids honored Gilda Radner’s brother, Michael Radner, with the Spirit of Gilda Award at Gilda’s Night of Gratitude for supporting GCGR through openly sharing the mission of cancer and grief support with his friends, colleagues and the community.

SUBWAY restaurants of Grand Rapids awarded White Cloud Elementary $1,000 worth of sports equipment for winning the local SUBWAY Fit For Life Challenge.

The Michigan West Coast Chamber recognized Jon Lanning of Inontime Inc. as the 2016 Small Business Person of the Year. 


Attorney Mark Periard joined Legacy Trust as the director of wealth management.


Edify North in Holland announced the additions of Christy Weenum, account manager and Lacie Perkins, group benefits consultant and lead specialist in ERISA compliance.


Betsy Hauter joined Kentwood Office Furniture as a sales administrator.

Muskegon Area First Procurement Technical Assistance Center director Pamela Vanderlaan-Poort was elected president of Procurement Technical Assistance Centers of MI Inc., a nonprofit organization consisting of 10 regional PTACs across all of Michigan’s 83 counties that assist businesses in selling their products and services to government markets.


CSM Group in Kalamazoo announced the promotion of Kristin Kremer to director of human resources.

Vos Glass welcomed Mike Zuspann to its residential/service department and Ron Terpstra to its commercial construction department.


The Grand Rapids Community College board of trustees named Dr. Bill Pink, GRCC’s current vice president and dean for Workforce Development, as the college’s 10th president. Pink previously served as vice president for academic affairs at Oklahoma State University-Oklahoma City; he has been an educator for more than 25 years and has taught or coached in Oklahoma, Nebraska and Oregon.


Food For Thought, an organic specialty foods company, launched its new website to allow for ease of ordering directly. Details:


The Kent County Board of Commissioners unanimously passed the 2017 annual budget, with the general fund just over $166.8 million, a slight increase of 1.7 percent from the previous year. The budget is projected at $342.4 million and includes more than $5.3 million for capital improvements.


Michael Quinn from Miller Johnson and Richard Roane of Warner Norcross, representing the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers Michigan Chapter, presented checks for $5,000 to the Children’s Assessment Center and the Legal Assistance Center.

Grand Rapids Community College was awarded a $6 million grant through the U.S. Labor Department's America's Promise grant competition to address West Michigan's crucial need for skilled health care workers by strengthening its Medical Assistant program and working with area employers on new programs, including ones for certified nursing assistants and sterile processing technicians.


Cottman Transmission and Total Auto Care announced Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital is among 30 children’s hospitals coast to coast that will receive its new coloring book for children, featuring the Cottman Man character to further ingrain itself into the communities it serves during this holiday season.

Mary Free Bed Medical Group announced the additions of Dr. Lisa Voss, a specialist in pediatric rehabilitation; Dr. Rebekah Rajlich, a family medicine physician who specializes in pain management; and Doris Jacobs, a physician’s assistant.

The Michigan State University College of Human Medicine is the recipient of the Spencer Foreman Award for Outstanding Community Service from the Association of American Medical Colleges for its diverse partnerships in Flint and in rural Michigan areas that focus on improving health care across the state.


Sunset Retirement Communities & Services in Jenison announced director of development Daniel Gowdy earned a Certified Fund Raising Executive designation. Emily Foster was promoted to assistant administrator of its Rose Garden community and Angela Russo was promoted to director of recreational therapy of its Brookcrest campus; both are located in Grandville.


Smith Haughey Rice & Roegge announced Angela Kaku joined the firm’s Muskegon office as an associate attorney.


Battle Creek-based Kellogg’s Rice Krispies announced it is partnering with Toys for Tots and Instagram Star Misterkrisp (aka Jessica Siskin) to benefit the Treats 4 Toys program. For every Rice Krispies treat made and then original photos posted to Facebook, Twitter or Instagram through Jan. 1, using #Treats4Toys, Rice Krispies will donate $10 to Toys for Tots (up to $50,000 total), to help buy toys for children in the U.S.

Feeding American West Michigan in Comstock Park is the recipient of a $75,000 grant from the Morgan Stanley Foundation to fund its School Mobile Pantry program that distributes healthy foods at Grand Rapids-area schools.

Mel Trotter Ministries collected more than 1,400 turkeys over the course of 48 hours during its Turkey Drop donations, a partnership between MTM, Celebration! Cinema North &

South and WOOD Radio, that included 5,000 pounds of turkeys and nonperishable food items. It served more than 2,000 Thanksgiving meals that were open to everyone during its 20th Annual Thanksgiving Banquet.


Freddy’s Frozen Custard & Steakburgers broke ground on Grand Rapids’ West Side at 25 Lake Michigan Drive NW, with a projected early spring opening. This marks a second area location for the fast-casual concept, which made its Grand Rapids debut earlier this year at 3777 Plainfield Ave.


Nails by Katie will relocate to a larger 1,100-square-foot space at 381 Baldwin in Jenison with a projected January opening.


Neil Brown and Wade Thompson purchased Central Interconnect Inc. from Arlen Smith with an eye to double annual revenues from the current $5 million level within five years with expanded offerings in products and services.

PRO-VISION Video Systems in Byron Center announced it is the only mobile video system manufacturer to be named to the 2016 Deloitte Technology Fast 500. The award highlights the 500 fastest-growing technology companies in North America.

SpinDance Inc. in Holland hired Tom Miller as its first vice president of sales and marketing.

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