Change Ups: WZZM 13 wins 12 Emmys


WZZM 13 snagged 12 Emmys at the 39th annual National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, Michigan Chapter held at the MotorCity Sound Board Theater in Detroit. WZZM 13 was the most-awarded station in West Michigan. Award-winning stories ranged from 13 On Your Side Watchdog investigative and consumer stories, to crime and health coverage, to the Our Michigan Life feature storytelling franchise. The Michigan Emmy Awards represents television professionals from all industry disciplines in all of Michigan’s 11 television markets.


West Olive-based ACRE AgTech, formerly the Great Lakes Ag-Tech Business Incubator, has a new client, Ann Arbor-based Digested Organics LL, whose system can take different organic waste — manure, vegetable scraps, beverage waste — and digest it into a fiber component, a nutrient component and a reusable water component.


Bergmann Associates relocated to 560 Fifth St. NW, Suite 305, Grand Rapids, 49504.


The Grand Rapids Art Museum announced contemporary artist Alexis Rockman’s exhibit The Great Lakes Cycle will open Jan. 27 and continue through April 29, 2018. The exhibition is anchored by five new mural-sized oil paintings, each accompanied by a key that illustrates and notates the species, artifacts and historical references within the painting. The panoramas reveal timelines of geology, climate and human history related to the Great Lakes.\


The National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors – West Michigan Chapter announced the election of its officers: president, Norman Woltjer, Insurance Navigation Group; president-elect, Lynn Hopkins, Alta Professional Insurance Services; vice president, Sarah Porter, AFLAC; community service; Zac Woodward, Watermark Employee Benefits; IFAPAC, Mark Staat, Northwestern Mutual; young advisors team, Sarah Porter, AFLAC; membership, Harvey Nuttall, New York Life; national committeeman, Michael Michalak, New York Life; and government affairs chair, Scott Embree, MassMutual MidMichigan.

The Small Business Association of Michigan announced the appointment of board members Doyle Hayes, dhayesGroup, Grand Rapids; Park Kersman, Lorin Industries, Muskegon; Erick Stewart, STEWART Industries, Battle Creek; Sue Tellier, JetCo Solutions, Grand Rapids; and Sheri Welsh, Welsh & Associates, Kalamazoo.


Consumers Credit Union in Kalamazoo hired Mark W. Aronoff, mortgage sales manager; Lori Hoeksema, mortgage loan officer; Doug Poynter, mortgage loan officer in Consumers’ Holland office; and Kara Harmsen, financial advisor in the Kalamazoo/Portage market.

Matthew Harris joined Independent Bank as a senior residential loan officer who will work from the bank’s Caledonia loan production office.


Grand Rapids Opportunities for Women announced local entrepreneur Julie Burrell, creator and owner of The Pumpndo, is the local winner of the InnovateHER Challenge. Julie won local service package worth over $8,000, and she is being submitted for a national pitch opportunity.

VARGO in Walker hired Omar Eissa as an engineering project manager.

Zeeland-based HR Solutions Group of West Michigan celebrated 10 years in the HR consulting and outsourcing industry. 


Grand Valley State University assistant professor of liberal studies Danielle Lake was awarded the John Saltmarsh Award for Emerging Leaders in Civic Engagement from the American Association of State Colleges and Universities.

Lake Michigan Mailers donated $10,000 to Southwestern Michigan College to support the expansion of its nursing and health education project on the college’s Dowagiac campus.

Western Michigan University’s Richmond Institute of Product Design and Innovation named Michael Elwell as its director and WMU’s Gwen Frostic School of Art as an associate professor of art.

Zeeland East High School graduate Darci TerHaar is the recipient of National Vision Inc.’s 2017 National Vision College Scholarship Program. TerHaar received $2,500 to support her college education. The reward is renewable up to three years for a total scholarship of up to $10,000 per student.


Boxed Water appointed Joe Jankowski as national account executive grocery mass. In this role, Jankowski will lead all sales efforts with large grocery chains nationwide.

Long Road Distillers released Perrin Black Malt Whisky made in partnership with Perrin Brewing Co. This is the second release of the Long Road Beer City Whisky Series, a lineup of whiskies collaboratively made with four local breweries that have helped earn Grand Rapids the title of Beer City, USA.


The Grand Rapids Art Museum is the recipient of a $35,000 award from the National Endowment for the Arts to support the museum’s 2018 exhibition Alexis Rockman: The Great Lakes Cycle 


LINC Up Executive Director Jeremy DeRoo was named to Michigan’s Environmental Justice Work Group, which was formed early in 2017 as a result of direct recommendations from the Flint Water Advisory Task Force and the Flint Water Interagency Coordinating Committee’s Policy Subcommittee, in response to the Flint water system crisis.

The Ottawa County Clerk’s Office, together with the state of Michigan, purchased new voting equipment from Hart InterCivic, a federally certified elections software vendor based in Austin, Texas. The purchase marks the county’s first major upgrade of voting technology in 13 years. Voters will use the new equipment the first time in the August election.


Varnum attorney Melissa Papke was elected to the American College of Real Estate Lawyers Class of 2017. A formal induction ceremony will be held in Los Angeles during the annual meeting in October. Papke has practiced real estate law for more than 15 years and leads Varnum’s Real Estate Group.

Varnum was ranked by Chambers USA in the areas of Banking & Finance (one of seven firms ranked in Michigan), Corporate/M&A (one of 11 firms), Labor & Employment (one of 13 firms) and Real Estate (one of 11 firms). Chambers also recognized Varnum attorneys as notable practitioners: Nyal Deems (Real Estate); Firm Chair David E. Khorey (Labor and Employment): Richard Hooker (Labor and Employment); and David McLeod (Banking and Finance).


DeWys Manufacturing Inc. in Marne announced the addition of Amy Hatfield as inside sales coordinator.

Steelcase announced it won the 22nd annual IIDA/Contract Magazine Showroom and Booth Design Competition for large showrooms at NeoCon 2017. Steelcase showroom featured Creative Spaces, a range of technology-enabled workspaces designed to foster creative thinking at work, which were jointly developed with Microsoft. Creative Spaces include places for individually focused work, pair-based collaboration, group ideation and experimentation as well as diffused thinking.


BISSELL Pet Foundation’s recent Blocktail Party raised $677,000 to support the lifesaving work of animal welfare organizations and EMPTY THE SHELTERS free adoption events


RestaurantWeek Grand Rapids announced nearly 70 restaurants, including 10-plus new participants, in the greater Grand Rapids area will take part in Restaurant Week GR 2017, scheduled Aug. 9-20. New to the event are more than 25 participating locations that will offer a lunch option. Details:


Mr. Alan’s Sneaker and Sportswear opened a new location at 1254 28th St. SW, Wyoming. This is the second store in the Grand Rapids area for the 43-year-old family-owned company; the first was in Kentwood.


Trivalent Group in Grandville was named a Michigan Economic Bright Spot for 2017 by Corp! Magazine for the ninth consecutive year.

Worksighted in Holland was awarded the Community Partner of the Year Golden Datto at the fifth annual DattoCon, Datto’s annual partner conference.

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