Change Ups: Mel Trotter hires VP, director


Mel Trotter Ministries has hired Bert Elliott as vice president of development and Abigayle Sladick as director of community relations. Elliott will oversee strategies to increase financial support from donors and community partners, and will manage staff in the donor relations, volunteer and marketing departments. Sladick is responsible for media relations for the mission and developing relationships with corporations, foundations and developing community partnerships.


Larry Alman of the Greenville Lion’s Club received the Secretary of State’s Shining Star Award for his work promoting organ, tissue and eye donation.


Lake Michigan Credit Union and United Federal Credit Union announced their intent to merge, subject to regulatory and other approvals. The merger will serve approximately 500,000 members and the combined organization will have total assets of more than $6 billion, with more than $8 billion in its mortgage servicing portfolio.


Kentwood Office Furniture has appointed Robert Von Kaenel Jr. president. He succeeds Art Hasse, who will remain as chief executive officer. Von Kaenel will have full responsibility for all company operations for all Kentwood Office Furniture ESOP locations. 


CSM Group in Kalamazoo announced the additions of John Eagerton, construction manager, and John VanDyke, IT intern, and the promotion of Joe Bailey to executive vice president.


Grand Rapids Community Collegeand the Ottawa Area Intermediate School District celebrated the 15th anniversary of the Patrick A. Thompson M-TEC facility, which was Michigan's second technology education center when it opened in 2000 in Olive Township. It was named for the founder of Trans-Matic Manufacturing Co.


Charles Hoebeke II, director of the Turnaround and Receivership Group at Rehmann in Grand Rapids, has received CIRA certification from the Association of Insolvency and Restructuring Advisors.


Allegan Farmers Market will offer free rides within a 10-mile radius to the market in 2016-2017 because of a partnership with Allegan County Transportation, after receiving funds from a USDA Agricultural Marketing Services Farmers Market promotion program grant.


Ottawa County officials announced the M231 Grand River Bridge Non-Motorized Pathway in Nunicahas been named Sgt. Henry E. Plant Memorial Grand River Bridge Non-Motorized Pathway in honor of the first Medal of Honor recipient in Ottawa County. Henry enlisted in the 14th Michigan Infantry during the first year of the Civil War and was wounded in 1862. The pathway was made possible in part with funding from the MDOT Transportation Alternative Program.


Friendship Village in Kalamazoo achieved a deficiency-free rating from the State of Michigan’s Bureau of Health Services Licensing & Regulatory Affairs division, one of the highest designations of quality care and services to its residents.


Aon Risk Solutions announced the addition of Bob Jones, strategic account manager, in its Grand Rapids office.


Foster Swift has added three videos to its Legal Basics Videos intended to answer entrepreneurs’ and business owners’ frequently asked questions. The videos are: “Classifying a Worker: Employee or Independent Contractor?”; “Record Retention Policies: Advice for Small Businesses”; and “Do it Yourself: Michigan Small Claims Court.” The videos can be found at

The Miller Johnson transaction “Turnaround and Sale of Heeren Brothers” was named a finalist in the 14th annual M&A Advisor Awards in the following categories: Restructuring Deal of the Year (from $10MM to $100MM); Corporate and Strategic Acquisition of the Year (from $10MM to $25MM); and Consumer and Retail Products of the Year (from $10MM to $500MM).

Secrest Wardle attorneys Henry S. Emrich, executive general partner, and Amanda B. Fopma, partner, were presenters at Insurance Institute of Michigan’s 13th Annual Claims Seminar at Michigan State University in East Lansing. Emrich discussed “Meeting Increasingly Aggressive Plaintiff’s Attorneys Head On; Dealing with Reptilian Trial Strategy”; and Fopma presented “ACV vs RCV: We Owe Replacement Cost Coverage but the Insured Hasn’t Replaced.”

Varnum tax attorney Wayne Roberts received the L. Hart Wright Service Award, presented by the Taxation Section of the State Bar of Michigan in recognition of his service and contribution to the Taxation Section, the Section Chair, and the legal and tax community in Michigan.

Warner Norcross & Judd LLP was recognized with a 2015 Your Honor Award from the Legal Marketing Association. The firm took first place in the annual report category for its 2014 Diversity and Inclusion annual report and was also recognized as a finalist in the advertising, firm brochures and newsletters categories.


Columbian Logistics Network will present an educational session on supply chain food safety practices at the 2015 Safe Quality Foods Institute International Conference in Indianapolis. The Nov. 3-5 conference focuses on providing food safety professionals with education and training resources to improve and protect supply chain safety practices.


Kevin Young has joined Baker Perkins, a food-processing equipment supplier,as shipping and receiving coordinator.


Dwelling Place is celebrating the 35th anniversary of its Herkimer Block Revitalization, 309 S. Division Ave., with an open house at 11 a.m., Oct. 29.


Gov. Rick Snyder announced the reappointment of Timothy Pietryga, of Grand Rapids, to the Michigan Film Office advisory council, and the appointments of Steve Johnson, of West Olive, and Tammy Yeomans, of Grand Rapids, and the reappointment of Heidi DeVries, of Kentwood, to the Developmental Disabilities Council.


Quality Car Wash, in partnership with Elzinga & Volkers, announced it will begin construction of a new location at 2925 44th St. in Grandville. The building will feature Totally Tommy building architecture and will be the seventh Quality Car Wash in West Michigan and the 25th Totally Tommy in the country. 


Varsity News Network announced the addition of Lucian Taylor, vice president of product. Taylor will direct VNN’s current product lines and lead development of VNN 2.0, the company’s new product initiative.


X-Rite Inc. and its subsidiary Pantone LLC reported Dave Hunter, one of five G7 Expert Trainers in the world and founder of Pilot Marketing Group, has added the X-Rite exact spectrophotometer with Scan Option to his portfolio of product offerings.

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