Change-ups: Droppers named Go To Lawyer for business law

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Michigan Lawyers Weekly named Varnum partner Jake Droppers a Go To Lawyer for business law. Droppers is a member of Varnum’s corporate services and M&A team. His focus is in business and transactional work with a strong emphasis on mergers and acquisitions, private equity, family office, venture capital and other commercial transactions. He has represented and advised clients in negotiating, structuring and documenting hundreds of M&A transactions, involving billions of dollars in enterprise values.

ARTS

Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park appointed Suzanne Ramljak as chief curator. Ramljak will oversee Meijer Gardens’ expanding exhibition program and acquisitions for the permanent collection.

The Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra hired Sydney Schless as director of marketing.

AWARDS

Kalamazoo-based Arbor Financial Credit Union presented the 2022 James E. Fetterolf Distinguished Service Award to Carolyn Hande.

BANKING

Kalamazoo-based First National Bank of Michigan announced the promotions of Greg Accardo, Patty Barnas, Jennifer Nemecek and Shaunna Padgett to senior vice presidents.

Union Bank in Lake Odessa announced the promotions of Peter Rossi as officer, information technology administrator; Kimberly Cox as vice president, loan operations manager; and Janet Torres as senior vice president, retail and deposit operations director.

Sparta-based ChoiceOne Bank announced the promotions of Walter Bargen to vice president, municipal and public funds officer; Eric Dyson to vice president, head of loan operations; Aaron Griffin to vice president, small business administration lending; Gary Hall to vice president, mortgage sales manager; Josh Hucul to vice president, senior credit manager; assistant vice president Tim Shangle will head the newly formed Innovation Department; and Mackenzie Woodward to Rockford branch manager.

BUSINESS SERVICES

Alyssa Hill, manager, human resources solutions, and Renee Looman, manager, membership services, joined The Employers’ Association to serve the local business community and TEA members by providing HR solutions that promote operational excellence and organizational sustainability.

Inc. Magazine announced Holland-based FlexPost Inc. is included on its 2022 Inc. 5000 Regionals: Midwest list, after ranking both regionally and nationally in 2021.

Sara Vereeke joined HR Solutions Group of West Michigan as HR consultant.

Zeeland-based ODL Inc. named Dan Volkema vice president of finance.

CONSTRUCTION

Ada-based Erhardt Construction earned a National Excellence in Construction Pyramid Award, presented during Associated Builder and Contractors Convention 2022 for its construction of the Amy Van Andel Library and Community Center in downtown Ada. Nick Haglund was Erhardt’s project manager and Brian Darling was the superintendent on the job.

EDUCATION

Ferris State University’s Division of Academic Affairs appointed Logan Jones, an educator, administrator and researcher, as its new dean of the College of Business.

Hope College in Holland named Dr. Gerald Griffin, an accomplished scholar in neurology and psychology, as its provost.

The U.S. Green Building Council of West Michigan recognized Grand Rapids Public Schools as the Green Schools Champion Award winner at USGBC-WM’s Annual Party & Leadership Award Ceremony. GRPS was chosen for its efforts to provide healthy learning environments and establish energy-saving practices.

FINANCIAL SERVICES

NPF Investment Advisors promoted David Hodge to partner.

FOOD & BEVERAGE

Revolution Farms in Caledonia added MJ McDonald as VP of sales. McDonald will lead sales operations, with a focus on expanding the farm’s retail relationships, specifically in foodservice.

Stephanie Kempa joined Saranac-based Herbruck’s Poultry Ranch as vice president of human resources as part of the executive team at the fourth-generation family business.

GRANTS

Disability Advocates of Kent County received a $975,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development that will enable the organization to make safety and functional home modifications and limited repairs to meet the needs of low-income senior homeowners that allow them to age in place. The three-year grant will help 150 seniors in Allegan, Ionia, Mecosta, Montcalm and Osceola counties.

The YMCA of Greater Grand Rapids is the recipient of a $355,000 grant from the Michigan Department of Education to provide out-of-school-time learning. The funding support is part of $3.3 million awarded to YMCAs across the state that have united to deliver impactful non-classroom programs.

HEALTH

Holland Hospital announced Dale Sowders has been named CEO and vice chair of the board of directors; Patti VanDort has been named Holland Hospital’s president; and Mark Pawlak is now executive vice president.

The American Association of Critical-Care Nurses recently granted a silver-level Beacon Award for Excellence to both the pediatric and cardiac intensive care units at Spectrum Health Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital. Only 29 pediatric intensive care units in the country have achieved Beacon Award status, and Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital’s units are the only ones in Michigan to receive the designation, both for the second time.

HOSPITALITY

Northgate Resorts announced the additions of Katy Hallgren, David Stafford and Addison Wittry as directors who will be based at the company’s home office in Grand Rapids.

LEGAL

Warner Norcross + Judd LLP for the ninth year has been recognized as a national leader in client service among law firms by the BTI Client Service A-Team survey conducted by BTI Consulting Group. The law firm was judged on 17 activities, including dealing with complexity, providing practical solutions, fielding the absolute best team and delivering value.

Michigan Lawyers Weekly announced Varnum attorney Staci DeRegnaucourt has been named a Go To Lawyer for intellectual property. DeRegnaucourt is a registered patent attorney with an engineering background.

MANUFACTURING

General Motors recognized Grand Haven-based Shape Corp. as a 2021 Supplier of the Year for providing GM customers with innovative technologies among the highest quality in the automotive industry.

MEDIA

The Michigan Association of Broadcasters recognized WGVU Public Media PBS NPR as Public Radio Station of the Year for the eleventh time. WGVU Public Media also received 13 other awards, including three Best in Category Awards as well as six Merit Awards in recognition of the station’s reporting, use of new media, community involvement and membership appeals, in addition to other categories.

NONPROFITS

The UMRC & Porter Hills Foundation added board members Reezie DeVet of Portage and Barbara Hohman of Grand Rapids.

REAL ESTATE

Colliers West Michigan hired Delores Crosby as client services coordinator.

RESTAURANTS

Columbus, Ohio-based Condado Tacos promoted Christina (Tina) Femeyer to assistant regional manager, overseeing its Michigan region.

RETAIL

Byron Center-based SpartanNash announced the promotion of David Sisk to the new position of chief customer officer. Also, the U.S. Defense Commissary Agency has extended its contract with the food solutions company to provide private label products to all DeCA commissaries through Dec. 15, 2025.

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