On the Street business news, Oct. 14

Awards, promotions, grants and other business related items.

EP Business News
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Nelson joins Minnesota Eye Institute

Dr. Patricia Nelson recently joined Minnesota Eye Institute in Alexandria.

Nelson is a board-certified ophthalmologist with more than 10 years of experience in eye surgery. She recently moved to Alexandria. She completed her medical training in Texas, and served eight years of active duty in the U.S. Army.

Nelson specializes in cataract, refractive (LASIK), and oculoplastic surgery. After her Army service, she worked at Texas Tech University in El Paso, teaching and serving a diverse border population for five years.

Patricia Nelson

In addition to her clinical experience, she serves on the ophthalmic advisory council and young fellows governing council for the American College of Surgeons, a national organization devoted to improving the care of all surgical patients.

She is accepting new patients, appointments can be made by calling 320-759-2020.


Minnesota Eye Institute located at 3401 S Broadway St, Alexandria has served the Alexandria area for more than 25 years.

McKirdy, Stanek join Coldwell Banker Crown Realtors

Lucas McKirdy and Rich Stanek have joined Coldwell Banker Crown Realtors as full-time independent sales associates working out of the Alexandria office.

Prior to joining Coldwell Banker Crown Realtors, McKirdy worked in residential real estate sales. He was raised in Alexandria and is a graduate of Jefferson High School. He is a veteran of the U.S. Marine Corps. He also owns McKirdy Services, a small maintenance business. McKirdy enjoys playing with his family, working on home improvement projects, reading and working on puzzles.

Before joining Coldwell Banker Crown Realtors, Stanek worked as a master electrician and has been an electrical contractor. He truly knows houses “inside and out,” said Brandon Johnson, president and CEO at Coldwell Banker Crown Realtors.

Stanek has been in real estate for a year and a half.

Johnson said both McKirdy and Stanek have excellent backgrounds in residential sales, and are extremely knowledgeable about the Alexandria market.

Coldwell Banker Crown Realtors located at 625 Broadway St, Alexandria, MN, can be reached at (320) 762-2172. Coldwell Banker Crown Realtors has been an affiliate of the Coldwell Banker system for 55 years.

Zimny Insurance named ‘Best Practices Agency’

Zimny Insurance Agency is part of an elite group of independent insurance agencies around the United States participating in the Independent Insurance Agents and Brokers of America (the Big “I”) “Best Practices” Study Group.


Each year since 1993, the Big “I” and Reagan Consulting, an Atlanta-based management consulting firm, join forces to study the country’s leading agencies in six revenue categories. The agencies comprising the study groups are selected every third year through a comprehensive nomination and qualifying process and awarded a “Best Practices Agency” designation. The selected “Best Practices” agencies retain their status during the three-year cycle by submitting extensive financial and operational data for review each year.

More than 2,600 independent agencies throughout the U.S. were nominated to take part in the annual study, but only 282 agencies qualified for the honor. To be chosen, the agency had to be among the top-performing agencies in one of six revenue categories.

The agency was nominated by either a Big “I” affiliated state association or an insurance company and qualified based on its operational excellence. The annual survey and study of leading independent insurance agencies documents the business practices of the highest performing agencies and urges others to adopt similar practices.

The Zimny Insurance agency was founded in 1984 and can offer insurance products from several different companies. For more information, contact the Zimny Insurance Agency in Alexandria at 320-762-2124.

ASB raises money for Someplace Safe

American Solutions for Business in Glenwood recently raised money for a local 501c3 organization, Someplace Safe of Pope County.

“Someplace Safe has done amazing things in our community,” said Founder and CEO of American, Larry Zavadil. “The individuals they serve get a new opportunity at life through community help and donations. We are so proud to be part of their legacy.”

ASB sales associate breaks his record

American Solutions for Business sales associate Rod Kuncaitis achieved his personal best in sales this year.

Kuncaitis has been with ASB since 1993. With customers in a wide variety of industries, Kuncaitis is able to adjust and evolve as his customers’ needs change, according to Amy Spychalla, vice president of ASB’s strategic operations support. He serves customers in insurance, retail, medical, religious/non-profit, education and manufacturing markets.


Kuncaitis started his career selling print and has expanded to include everything from branded merch to office products, PPE, kitting, signage and more.

After 29 years, Kuncaitis broke his own record and has his best year ever, qualifying for ASB’s recent Sales Summit in Chicago.

MN Credit Union offers scholarships

Applications are now being accepted for the Minnesota Credit Union Foundation Scholarship Council scholarship program. As part of Mid Minnesota Federal Credit Union’s continued efforts to support students and their families in their financial education journey, the credit union encourages those that qualify to apply for this scholarship opportunity available exclusively to Minnesota credit union members.

This year the council will be awarding eight $1,000 scholarships to traditional applicants and eight $1,000 scholarships to non-traditional applicants. Any member of a Minnesota Credit Union Network affiliated credit union pursuing post-secondary education in the fall 2023/spring 2024 or a high school senior graduating in 2023 is eligible to apply.

You can find more information and a link to the application at Applications are being accepted online with a submission deadline of November 30, 2022.

To apply, submit an essay not exceeding 500 words answering the following essay question: “With rising costs of living, how has this impacted your financial goals and how can your credit union help you achieve them?”

The FSC has awarded over 340 scholarships totaling over $200,000 since its inception in 1997.

Our newsroom occasionally reports stories under a byline of "staff." Often, the "staff" byline is used when rewriting basic news briefs that originate from official sources, such as a city press release about a road closure, and which require little or no reporting. At times, this byline is used when a news story includes numerous authors or when the story is formed by aggregating previously reported news from various sources. If outside sources are used, it is noted within the story.
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