Change Ups: Restaurant Week generates $16,000 for SICE


(L-R) Secchia Institute for Culinary Education students who received $1,000 scholarships from funds generated by RWGR: Justin Back, Sarah Rae Samrick, Ryan Wall, Kalee Mulder, Mike Aswani and Emily Niergarth.

Sixty-plus restaurants donated $1 each from meals sold during the recent 12-day Restaurant Week Grand Rapids, which will help make a difference with area culinary students’ education. The largesse resulted in a $16,000 check being presented to the Grand Rapids Community College Foundation, which grew its Secchia Institute for Culinary Education Student Scholarship Fund to $126,906. Six SICE students also received RWGR 2016 scholarship awards. RWGR contributions to SICE began in 2010, the year RWGR launched.


Baker Holtz partner Lori Baker announced she will transition into an “Of Counsel” role beginning Dec. 31. She will work on special projects for clients and continue to share her substantial expertise by continuing to serve as a firm-wide resource.


The Grand Rapids Public Museum announced the newest acquisition to its collections is an American LaFrance “Tiller” Fire Truck, originally from the city of Grand Rapids. With an 85-foot extension ladder, the truck was purchased new and placed in service by the Grand Rapids Fire Department in 1937 from one of America’s oldest manufacturers of fire equipment.


MiASLA VIRIDIS Design Group is the recipient of the Firm of the Year Award from the Michigan Chapter of the American Society of Landscape Architects; MCASLA also named VDG’s SuLin Kotowicz the Distinguished Professional of 2016.

The following are award recipients at the recent 12th annual César E. Chávez Hispanic Excellence Scholarship and Community Awards Gala: Youth Award, Averica Lopez; La Familia Award, Jose Martin and Leticia Pérez; Golden Citizen Award, Rev. Theodore James Kozlowski; and the Distinguished “Aguila” Award, Miguel Ángel Ramírez.


Greenleaf Trust in Kalamazoo announced Fortune and Great Place to Work ranked it 24th on the country’s Best Small and Medium Workplaces.

Independent Bank closed its offices Columbus Day so staff could participate in an all-employee volunteer day across the state.


NPAworldwide had its 60th anniversary. Based in Grand Rapids, the global recruitment network has 500 member firms and more than 1,400 recruiters across six continents.


Baker College surgical technology graduates earned the Muskegon campus its 20th consecutive annual Merit Award from the National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting. The organization provides the certification exam for surgical technologists.

Muskegon-based Baker College’s Culinary Institute of Michigan 2014 associate degree graduate Dylan Donovan was awarded the first $6,900 Chicago JBF Eats Week Scholarship by the James Beard Foundation to continue his culinary studies. He is pursuing a bachelor’s in culinology at Dominican University, River Forest, Illinois.


Greenleaf Companies in Kalamazoo announced Ronald A. Elenbaas retired as the president and CEO of Greenleaf Hospitality Group.


Catholic Charities West Michigan received an $11,250 donation from SpartanNash as customers at three of its stores — Family Fare on Leonard, D&W of Cascade and Forest Hills Foods — made donations to support local food pantries as they checked out after shopping.


The Kent County Board of Commissioners authorized Phase 2 of the county’s Limited Full Faith and Credit pledge to the city of Grand Rapids for the issuance of about $10 million in bonds toward the Grand River Floodwalls and Embankments Drain Bonds project, estimated to save the city more than $340,000. The first phase of improvements and $4.725 million in bonds was issued in 2014 when the county made its Limited Full Faith and Credit pledge.


Pine Rest Christian Mental Health Services added Pax Crisis Response services, which specializes in the delivery of psychological and spiritual first aid to organizations and provides training, consultation and service via telephonic, video live feed and on-site mechanisms. The service is managed by Bob VandePol, Pine Rest’s executive director of Employee, Church and School Assistance Programs.

Healthgrades 2017 Report to the Nation, an online consumer resource, recognized Spectrum Health Butterworth and Blodgett hospitals as America’s 100 Best Hospitals for Critical Care for the fifth consecutive year (2013-17); America’s 100 Best Hospitals for Cardiac Care, General Surgery and Gastrointestinal Care for the fourth year in a row (2014-17), America’s 100 Best Hospitals for Coronary Intervention for the third year in a row (2015-17) and America’s 100 Best Hospitals for Pulmonary Care for the second consecutive year (2016-17). In addition, Spectrum Health Butterworth and Blodgett were recipients of the Outstanding Patient Experience award for the third consecutive year (2014-16). 

Tobacco Free Network Coalition, formerly known as Tobacco Free Partners, now is housed within Health Net of West Michigan.


Attorney Adrian A. Copeland joined Sinas Dramis as an associate in its Grand Rapids office, where she will focus her practice on auto liability, auto no-fault benefit and personal injury cases.

The Michigan State Bar Foundation announced Alfred M. Butzbaugh, of Saint Joseph, was elected president for the 2016-17 year. Butzbaugh was chief judge of the Berrien County Trial Court.

Plunkett Cooney partner Lisa A. Hall was designated a Rising Star in Michigan Super Lawyers magazine. Hall focuses her practice in the areas of creditors’ rights, bankruptcy, collections, commercial litigation and real estate law.

Tyler Stewart has joined Kalamazoo-based Levine & Levine as an attorney with a focus on business law, appeals and estate planning.


Watermark Properties announced it will become the new owner of The Golf Club at Thornapple Pointe, effective Jan. 1. It will continue operating as a public course and banquet facility under the new ownership and will operate separately from Watermark’s private course model.


The Michigan Economic Development Corporation announced Rochester Hills-based Coastal Automotive LLC will establish a new manufacturing facility in Holland, investing nearly $6.5 million and creating 110 jobs and has been awarded a $436,000 Michigan Business Development Program performance-based grant; IP Consulting Inc. plans to expand in the city of Kentwood that will generate a capital investment of $699,000 and create 25 jobs. The company has been awarded an $180,000 MBDP performance-based grant to help offset recruiting and training costs.

PRO-VISION Video Systems in Byron Center recently featured its BODYCAM BC-300 and its full line of Reliable, Simple and Affordable products at the 2016 International Association of Chiefs of Police Annual Conference and Exposition in the San Diego Convention Center.


WOOD TV8 announced the following: Teresa Weakley joined the 24 Hour News 8 Daybreak anchor desk with a newscast that will include more news; 24 Hour News 8’s Tom Hillen now is the dedicated traffic reporter; Emily Linnert will work as a health and education reporter and also will join Susan Shaw as co-anchor for 24 Hour News 8 at Noon; new graphics on the newscasts and technology upgrades have been made for the Storm Team 8 Tracking Center; and 24 Hour News 8 at 7 recently was launched.


Ottawa County’s deputy Shane Ryke is the recipient of the quarterly Outstanding Customer Service Award. 

Gov. Rick Snyder announced Jessica Ann Tyson, of Kentwood, was appointed to the Building the 21st Century Economy Commission.


Signature Associates’ Kalamazoo office hired Tom Hohm as a sales associate.

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