Change Ups: WMU alumnus to direct flight operations



Capt. Russell Kavalhuna has been named executive director of flight operations for the Western Michigan University College of Aviation at W.K. Kellogg Airport in Battle Creek. Kavalhuna is an alumnus who is an established aviation and legal professional. He holds an Airline Transport Pilot Certificate and is a former airline captain and flight instructor. He also is a licensed attorney and comes to WMU having served since 2009 as a federal prosecutor in the Western District of Michigan. 


The Grand Rapids Public Library Board of Commissioners announced the addition of members Sophia Ward Brewer, who was elected to a six-year term as a write-in candidate, and Rachel S. Anderson, who was appointed to fill a seat vacated by Anne Armstrong Cusack.


Birgit Klohs, president and CEO of The Right Place Inc., will be honored May 6 with the 2016 Peter C. Cook Excellence in Business Award at Davenport University’s 19thAnnual Excellence in Business Gala at DeVos Place. Anderson Cooper, of CNN’s“Anderson Cooper 360,” will be the featured guest speaker.

Life EMS Ambulance has been named one of the country’s Best and Brightest Companies to Work For by the National Association for Business Resources.


First National Bank of Michigan welcomed Jennifer Nemecek, vice president and treasury management officer.

Calvin College president Michael K. Le Roy has been appointed to the board of directors of Macatawa Bank Corp. and Macatawa Bank.


D.K. Security announced it was awarded a three-year contract to provide weekly guard hours and event security for special events at Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park.


CSM Group in Kalamazoo has promoted Ryan Long to group vice president, and Kevin Kirk to vice president of environmental, health and safety.

Triangle Associates has presented Jim Van Beek, project superintendent, with the Golden Hard Hat Award, and Nicole Arthur, project coordinator, with the Community Steward Award.


F. James Cummins, who has worked for Baker College for nearly 30 years, retired as president of the Baker College system. Bart Daig, a 25-year veteran of Baker College, will succeed him.

Hope Network, in partnership with Integrated HealthAnalytics, has been named Internship of the Year by Grand Valley State University.

Western Michigan University advertising and promotion student Carlos Pinon, of Coldwater,is one of 50 students nationwide selected by the American Advertising Federation to participate in its Most Promising Multicultural Students Program for 2016.


The Kent County Parks Foundation announcedthe election of its officers and board members. Officers: president, Jim Conner, Triangle Associates; vice president, Denise Kolesar, Kohler Expos; secretary, Tom Amon, Warner Norcross & Judd (also a new board member); and treasurer, Betsy Haller, Chemical Bank. Board members: Shelley Irwin, WGVU; Ellen Bristol, Metro Health Hospital; Todd Harvey, Fifth Third Bank; Lynn Jarman-Johnson, Consumers Credit Union; and Bob Karel, CQL.

The Wege Foundation announced the promotion of Katy Furtado to grants manager.


Hope College in Holland has received a $500,000 grant from Lilly Endowment Inc. to establish Awakening, a summer institute.


The Gerald R. Ford Airport Authority and the Kent County Board of Commissioners have reached three agreements that move the airport closer to federal approval for having its own governance: a Lease and Asset Transfer Agreement; an Assignment and Assumption Agreement; and an Intergovernmental Services Agreement.

The Kent County Board of Commissioners joined the Community Mental Health Authority Board (network180) and other partners in signing a Call to Action to reduce the number of people with mental illnesses in the Kent County Jail by participating in a national initiative called Stepping Up.

Kent County Parks received an additional $500,000 in grants and donations from Peter Secchia to expand and develop the Meadows at Millennium Park. In August 2015, the board approved an agreement with the Secchia Family Limited Partnership to finance approximately $3 million in improvements to the Meadows area; construction projects led to higher-than-expected bids.

WalletHub, an online professional financier, named the City of Grand Rapids one of the top 10 U.S. cities having the best Return On Investment on police spending.


Mercy Health announced the members to its regional governance board: Jose Infante, Independent Bank; Jean Nagelkerk, Grand Valley State University; Stephen Zonca, Muskegon Surgical Associates PC; Canetta Reid, Meijer; and Dale Nesbary, Muskegon Community College.

The Western Regional Area Health Education Center, located in Western Michigan University's downtown Grand Rapids location,has partnered with providers across Southwest Michigan to play an integral role to increase the size and diversity of the primary care workforce in medically underserved and health-care-provider shortage areas.


Miller Johnson announced the addition of Matthew B. Van Dyk as a member in its Kalamazoo office. Van Dyk has practiced real estate law since 2004. 


Bates, a division of Wolverine Worldwide in Rockford, has been awarded contracts to manufacture Temperate Weather Combat boots by the U.S. Defense Logistics Agency to outfit allied forces in Afghanistan.


The American Heart Association received a grant from the Greater Grand Rapids 100 Women Who Care to train Kenowa Hills Middle School students in CPR, expected to take place in conjunction with physical education classes in 2016.

Kathy “K.P.” Pelleran has joined the staff at United Way of the Lakeshore in Muskegon as director of planning, advocacy and grants.


Vanguard Public Affairs in Lansing announced the addition of veteran Michigan journalist and columnist Andrew Heller as vice president. 


Gov. Rick Snyder announced the appointments of Travis Weber, of Grand Rapids, to the Michigan State Capitol Commission; John Mulder, of Spring Lake, to the Advisory Committee on Pain and Symptom Management; Nathan Karnemaat, of Fremont, to the Michigan Carrot Commission; and the reappointment of Kelly Mitchell, of Grand Rapids, to the Board of Barber Examiners.


Registration for the Feb. 19-21 Meijer State Games of Michigan Winter Games is open. Information is available at


Trivalent Group Inc. in Grandville announced it has attained Microsoft’s Gold MidMarket Solution Provider competency and a Silver Hosting competency, demonstrating a “best-in-class” ability and commitment.

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