On the Street - April 27, 2012Loren R. Backlund has been named the Legionnaire of the Month for March.
• Amanda Totz was recently promoted from barista to manager of Dunn Brothers Coffee in Alexandria.
Along the way, her career path took some interesting turns. She was a senior in high school when she was first hired at Dunn Brothers and thought it would just be another temporary job. “Six months into working here I thought it would be pretty neat to own a coffee shop,” she recalled.
A year and a half later, her life changed when she moved to Fargo, North Dakota and found out there were three Dunn Brothers locations there.
Seven months later, she decided to transfer back. “The Alexandria location just felt too much like home for me to stay away,” she said.
Totz was rehired in June in 2011 and a few months later she was promoted to manager.
Customers are invited to stop in Dunn Brothers next week, April 23-27, when the coffee shop is celebrating its four-year anniversary in Alexandria.
• Dakota Supply Group (DSG) has named CEO Todd Kumm as chairman of its board of directors. He replaces Ben Herr, who recently retired. In addition, Mike Tupa and Todd Eber have joined DSG’s board of directors.
Along with serving on the board, Tupa serves as DSG’s electrical group manager, and Eber is the president of W.A. Roosevelt, which was recently acquired by DSG.
DSG is one of the Midwest’s fastest-growing distributors of innovative electrical, plumbing, HVAC/R, communications, utility, metering technology, automation and waterworks products. Established in 1898, the employee-owned company has 21 locations throughout Minnesota, North Dakota and South Dakota, including five W.A. Roosevelt locations in Wisconsin. With nearly 400 employees throughout its organization, DSG’s headquarters is in Fargo, North Dakota.
• Debbie Story is a recipient of the Knute Nelson’s (KN) “Tree of Excellence” award. This award is the highest level of recognition through the KN Employee Recognition Program. Story has been employed at KN for more than three years and is currently the payroll specialist. Story was nominated by her peers who had this to say about her: “Always has a positive attitude even under pressure and stress… Is welcoming and friendly when assisting coworkers with questions… Is very accurate and detailed in her work… Always brings joy to a job that is challenging and meticulous… Provides excellent customer service… Has a bubbly personality and enjoys sharing a smile with everyone she encounters.”
• American National Bank of Minnesota (ANB) has promoted Stacy James to vice president/branch manager of the Alexandria location. James, who joined American National Bank 11 years ago, will continue to serve in her lending role as a commercial loan officer but will take on additional management responsibilities as branch manager.
American National Bank of Minnesota is a $275 million community bank with offices throughout central Minnesota. ANB has been providing banking services in Alexandria since 1984.
• A.M. Best has affirmed it’s A++ rating for Thrivent Financial for Lutherans in Alexandria, as well as its stable outlook. The A++ rating is the highest of the ratings agency’s 16 ratings categories. A.M. Best cited Thrivent Financial’s strong capitalization and earnings, positive operating results, higher assets under management, increased scale in its core lines of business, and its strong market presence within the Lutheran community as the primary reasons for its affirmation.
• The 3M Foundation has donated $250 to Zion Lutheran School, in recognition of Karen Nolz’s commitment to the community. Nolz has donated more than 22 hours at Zion Lutheran School. As a volunteer, Nolz served on the School Bazaar and Gala Committee.
“3M employees and retirees generously give their time and skills to help others” said Robin Torgerson, vice-president, 3M Community Affairs. “We are pleased to recognize and support their commitment to helping others.”
As part of the 3M Volunteer Match, the 3M Foundation will donate $250 to eligible non-profit organizations for which a 3M employee volunteers 25 hours or more per calendar year. For more information on this program, contact 3M Community Affairs at (651) 733-0144.
3M Community giving consists of product donations and cash grants by 3M and the 3M Foundation and bolstered by employee and retiree volunteerism. In 2011, more than $60 million was awarded to education and charitable organizations. Since 2000, volunteer matches totaling more than $4 million have gone to more than 2,600 schools or non-profit organizations in 50 states plus the District of Columbia.
For more information on the 3M Community Giving, visit www.3Mgiving.com.
• Loren R. Backlund has been named the Legionnaire of the Month for March. Backlund graduated from high school and enlisted in the U.S. Navy on September 16, 1968 because of the Vietnam War. He went through basic training at the Great Lakes Training Center in Waukegan, Illinois. Following basic training, Backlund was trained in aviation electronics at NAS Memphis, Tennessee. He then spent two years at NWS Concord, California testing air to air missiles, before being assigned to VQ-1, home ported out of Agana, Guam. Backlund was discharged on August 25, 1972, having obtained the pay grade of E-4. Following his active duty service, Backlund obtained a Bachelor of Science degree. He has been a Legion member for at least 40 years. Backlund is an honor to Alexandria and to Legion Post 87.
• Lynette Kluver of Alexandria Industries recently completed the comprehensive Velocity Leadership training and certification program in Chicago.
Completion of the certification equips Kluver with a clear roadmap to create leadership strength and agility for businesses.
The Velocity tools enable Kluver to lead businesses through identifying the competencies leaders need to grow the business, applying those unique competencies in assessing what leadership development is needed, creating development plans, offering and facilitating nearly 50 training sessions and applying the competencies to hiring and succession planning.
“Because the speed and direction of an organization is driven by leadership, I am excited to have the ability to offer the comprehensive leadership program, Velocity,” said Kluver. “What makes this program especially notable is it is designed from years of experience with clients and based on best practices.”
Backed by more than a decade of research and development, the Velocity Leadership program meets a critical need to develop the skills and those dynamic systems that underlie organizational performance in growth-oriented businesses. The Velocity leadership development programs provide a competency identification tool and a series of trainings designed to unleash potential needed to drive growth.
• Bremer Bank loan officers Cindy Maanum and Douglas Jossart were recently named top producing loan officers by Minnesota Housing. Maanum and Jossart were recognized for their work on first-time homebuyer loans completed in the third and fourth quarters of 2011.
“Cindy and Doug have helped numerous families and individuals with mortgage loans for more than 20 years at Bremer,” said Karen Gajeski, senior vice president of residential real estate operations at Bremer Financial. “Their dedication in meeting with clients and servicing their mortgage needs from top to bottom is among the best I’ve worked with over my career.”
Maanum is a vice president and mortgage loan officer with 35 years of banking experience at Bremer, including 26 years in the mortgage industry. Jossart is a mortgage loan officer with 31 years of banking experience, including 25 years working in the mortgage industry. He has been working in mortgage at Bremer for six years. Maanum and Jossart currently serve the western Minnesota communities in the Alexandria area.
Minnesota Housing started tracking all first-mortgage loans originated by individual loan officers January 1, 2010. The program is designed to recognize individual loan officer production for first-time mortgage loan programs.
Minnesota Housing finances and advances affordable housing opportunities for low and moderate income Minnesotans to enhance quality of life and foster strong communities. Minnesota Housing invests more than $1.4 billion in affordable housing each biennium with total agency-wide assets of $3.6 billion as of June 30, 2011. Find out more at www.mnhousing.gov.
Bremer Financial Corporation is a privately-held, $8 billion regional financial services company jointly owned by its employees and the Otto Bremer Foundation (OBF). Founded in 1943 by Otto Bremer, the company is headquartered in St. Paul and provides a comprehensive range of banking, investment, trust and insurance services to locations in Minnesota, North Dakota and Wisconsin. OBF uses its share of dividends to distribute charitable grants to Bremer bank communities.
• Savanna Steidl, RN 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. Steidl has been employed at KN for almost seven years and is currently a registered nurse in home care. Steidl was nominated by her peers who had this to say about her: “Goes above and beyond to help other co-workers understand their job and assist wherever needed… Takes charge and does her job efficiently and productively… Strives for great patient care, always putting the customer first… Maintains a positive attitude during busy times… Every client can’t say enough great things about her care; she shows compassion, care and knowledge.”