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On the Street - November 2, 2012

--At this year's Minnesota Collegiate DECA Professional Development Conference, Bob Friederichs was awarded the Honorary Life Membership. Consideration for this award includes a minimum of five years of services with Minnesota Collegiate DECA with an expectation of continued service and at least seven years of service as a marketing instructor.

Friederichs has been a faculty member at Alexandria Technical and Community College (ATCC) for more than 18 years. He has also been actively involved in Collegiate DECA, serving several terms on the board. Friederichs was recognized in 2005 as Advisor of the Year by DECA.

--Glacial Hills Elementary in Pope County has been selected as a winner of a $10,000 grant in America's Farmers Grow Rural Education. Farmers were able to nominate their public school district to apply for a $10,000 or $25,000 merit-based grant to enhance math and science education.

The grants are available through the Monsanto Fund. After a three tier grant review process, Glacial Hills Elementary was selected as one of eight winners in Minnesota.

--Joey Fleming, born and raised in Alexandria, is the West Central Minnesota Communities Action (WCMCA) Art in the Halls featured artist for the month of October. He graduated from Jefferson High School in Alexandria and later earned a Bachelor of Arts in studio art at St. Olaf College in Northfield. He then studied art at Liceo Artistico, F. Archangeli, in Bologna, Italy and in Florence, Italy. He continued his education at Christ College in Bangalore, India.

Fleming's art experiences include working as a studio potter in Northfield and studio assistant at Eureka Pots in Farmington. He was awarded an art apprenticeship with a focus in ceramics at St. Olaf College. He was the scenic designer in the production of Arabian Nights at St. Olaf College.

Fleming continues to create ceramics, canvases and sketches in Missouri.

--Rural Minnesota author Kelly Aul's Christian historical romance novel Audrey's Sunrise is now being sold at The Mustard Seed book store in Alexandria.

Aul lives in Elbow Lake with her parents and two younger siblings. They were homeschooled together, which made their family very close. Growing up, Aul had a vivid imagination. She was always pretending, making up games with her siblings and finding adventure around her home.

Aul is enthralled with European history, especially the 19th century. She is in full-time ministry, along with her family, studying to be a pastor. She also works part-time as a pharmacy technician.

--maurices has teamed up with the American Cancer Society for October's National Breast Cancer Awareness Month to promote education and early screenings.

maurices just launched the "Shop Pink. Give Hope." in which 50 percent of the sale price of limited-edition items supports breast cancer research and other early detection programs through the American Cancer Society. Also, maurices associates will be on the front lines at Making Strides Against Breast Cancer walks.

maurices, a brand of Ascena Retail Group, Inc., is a hometown specialty store that stands for fashion, quality, value and customer service.

--Michelle Erickson was recently hired at Racquetball Plus and Body Spa. She is a graduate of the health and fitness program with a degree in exercise science from Alexandria Technical and Community College, graduating top of her class.

Erickson brings more than 16 years of coaching experience, as well as certifications in personal training through the National Academy of Sports Medicine and certifications in kettle bell, indoor cycling and fitness nutrition through the National Strength and Conditioning Association.

Erickson is teaching several classes, as well as doing personal training at Racquetball Plus and Body Spa.

--Private Joseph Didier, age 18, of Alexandria earned the title U.S. Marine upon graduating from Marine Corps recruit training in San Diego, California on October 12.

Didier completed 13 weeks of Marine Corps boot camp. The training honed vital military skills such as marksmanship, first-aid, martial arts and leadership.

Following 10 days of leave, Didier will attend school to learn his occupational specialty and then report to his first duty station to serve with a Marine Corps unit.

Didier is a 2012 graduate of Jefferson High School in Alexandria. He was enlisted by Staff Sergeant Kirk Ryan from the Marine Corps recruiting office in St. Cloud.

--Rebecca Wuebkers has joined Widseth Smith Nolting's Alexandria office as an administrative assistant. She has an associate of applied science in office management from Alexandria Technical and Community College.

As an administrative assistant, Wuebkers' responsibilities include document and data entry, telephone reception, scanning and copying documents, taking inventory, receiving and sending mail and other general administrative tasks.

Widseth Smith Nolting is a multi-disciplined firm providing engineering, architectural, land surveying and environmental services.

--Air Force Staff Sergeant Matthew Westad, the son of Lynn and Julie Westad of Parkers Prairie, was promoted to the rank of technical sergeant in the U.S. Air Force. His wife, Rebecca, is the daughter of Steve Winter of Alexandria.

Westad is a trainer development team subject matter expert assigned to the 628th Air Base Wing at Charleston Air Force Base, South Carolina. He has served in the military for 10 years.

Westad graduated in 2001 from Parkers Prairie High School. He received an associate degree in 2005 from Avionic System Technology, Charleston and an additional associate degree in 2010 from Instructor of Military Science, Charleston.

--Air Force Reserve Master Sergeant Ronald Helgeson, the son of Marian Helgeson of Villard, has retired from the U.S. Air Force Reserve after 28 years of honorable service.

In his last assignment, Helgeson served as a section chief assigned to the 446th Maintenance Squadron at McChord Field, Washington. He graduated from Villard High School in 1977.

--Sue Rusch has joined Tastefully Simple as the senior director of executive development. In this role, Rusch will coach and develop top-level independent consultants, lead the coaching team and serve as an advisor to Tastefully Simple's vision team.

Rusch has more than 25 years of direct sales experience. Early in her career, she developed and led a $19 million direct sales team. Rusch was the vice president/general manager for Big Yellow Box by Crayola and most recently a speaker, consultant, coach and author through Sue Rusch and Associates, LLC.

Tastefully Simple is a national home tasting party company featuring easy-to-prepare foods and gifts.

--Alexandria Industries recently announced that Tom Jensen has joined the company as director of business development. Jensen has extensive experience in aluminum extrusions, secondary machining and finishing operations, as well as in sales and business management. He previously directed his own renewable-energy company where his team created and globally marketed an extruded aluminum- and steel-based racking solution.

Prior to his renewable-energy venture, he worked with Alexandria Industries as a manufacturing representative in the western U.S. region and as a market sales leader for the company's durable medical equipment business. Jensen is a graduate of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and will office out of Denver, Colorado.

--Bremer Bank recently announced the promotion of Vicki Berberich to mortgage loan officer in the downtown Alexandria office. Berberich has spent the past 16 years at Bremer as a personal banker. A U.S. Marine Corps veteran, she started her banking career at Bremer in 1995.

Berberich is active in the community and has volunteered with local events and organizations such as Habitat for Humanity, Impact Alexandria, the Douglas County Hospital Ball, the Veterans Program and VFW (as a member).