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On the Street - July 19, 2013

--B.M. Gagnon and Associates Inc., an independent insurance broker and health care consulting firm, is new to Alexandria. B.M. Gagnon president Brenda Gagnon has more than 23 years insurance experience.

Located at 2075 Fairview Beach Road, B.M. Gagnon and Associates offers services such as strategic program assessment of health care benefits, monitoring of health care costs, Affordable Care Act guidance, and performs as an extension of an employer's human resources department.

As an independent broker, B.M. Gagnon and Associates offers employers freedom, flexibility, industry knowledge, resources and unbiased opinions.

It also facilitates the insurance company to give an employer all the benefits to which they are entitled.

For more information, call B.M. and Associates Inc. at (612) 751-2168 or visit

--During the eighth annual Bremer Bank Hunger Campaign, the $2-for-$1 donation match-up to $30,000 was met and exceeded. In total, approximately $103,350 was raised during the two-week campaign for local Feeding America food banks and local food shelves.

This total includes an additional $4,886 donated by Bremer as a result of a $1 donation per view of its hunger awareness video featuring senior performance group Alive and Kickin'. The Bremer Hunger Campaign all-time donation totals have now surpassed $1 million raised to end hunger.

During the campaign, Bremer employees raised money by sponsoring bake sales, as well as hosting cookouts and food drives. They also donated their time and energy to stock local food shelves and prepare food packages in various communities.

--The dental practice of Lowell Einerson welcomes Dan Einerson to the dental staff. Dan grew up in Alexandria, as did his wife, Angie, and after completing dental school at the University of Minnesota, he did a one-year general practice residency in Chicago, Illinois.

During the residency, Dan gained advanced skills in oral surgery, including implant placement and surgical extractions, Invisalign treatment and also working with special needs and underserved populations.

--Desiree Wiita, PTA, is a recipient of Knute Nelson's (KN) Tree of Excellence award. This award is the highest level of recognition through the KN Employee Recognition Program. Wiita has been employed at KN for more than three years.

She was nominated by her peers who said that she is "very tactful and articulate when discussing a patient with a family member," has "great customer service," and "has great time management and never slacks."

--Kevin Klepper of the financial services firm Edward Jones in Alexandria recently won the firm's Jim McKenzie Award for his exceptional achievement in building client relationships. Klepper was one of 1,099 of the firm's 12,000 financial advisors to receive the Jim McKenzie award.

Edward Jones provides financial services for individual investors in the U.S. and through its affiliate in Canada.

--The board of directors of the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) elected Larry Puls of Garfield to be a life director at the association's spring board of directors meeting in Washington, D.C. on June 8.

Puls is the president of LRP Construction Services in Garfield. He has been a member of NAHB for 16 years and served as a voting director for 10 years. He has also been a member of Vikingland Builders Association since October of 1997 and currently sits on its board of directors.

In order to be eligible for election as a life director, NAHB builder and associate members must have served as a voting director for more than 10 years, have attended at least two board meetings each year, and be recommended by their local or state association.

--Laura Hagstrom has joined the water resources department of Widseth Smith Nolting's (WSN) Alexandria office. She has a Bachelor of Science in civil engineering from the University of North Dakota.

As a water resources engineer for WSN, Hagstrom is responsible for hydrologic and hydraulic analysis of watersheds and river systems, surface water modeling, water quality control design, open ditch repairs and improvements design, culvert sizing and floodwater storage impoundments design.

--Marco, Inc. received the 2013 Break Away Partner of the Year Award from Cisco. The award was presented at Cisco's Annual Partner Summit in Boston in June. Marco is the only Minnesota headquartered company to win an award at this year's event.

Cisco honored Marco for its commitment to planned and well-executed accelerated growth. Marco was recognized for its investment in several specializations.

Marco is a Cisco Premier Partner, meeting standards set forth by Cisco for networking competency, service, support, and customer satisfaction.

--Marco Inc. received the state's top workplace awards and its highest employee satisfaction score in the wave of its largest employee growth in the company's history. The St. Cloud-based technology provider has added 310 employees in the past year.

The company was named one of the Top 100 Workplaces in Minnesota by the Star Tribune and Minnesota Business this summer and also received the 2013 Best Place to Work by the Minneapolis-St. Paul Business Journal.

The results of Marco's annual employee survey scored the company 4.62 in work satisfaction on a 5-point scale, up from 4.22 a year ago and the highest value in the survey's 25-year history.