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• The Women in Business Expo to be held from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 26, at the Marriott Hotel in downtown Knoxville. This event is designed to help and provide a place for women in small or home-based businesses to market their industry. The cost to vendors is minimal, while it remains no cost to the public. Free parking and door prizes will also be available to those who attend. The goal is to have around 30 vendors, offering a variety of services and opportunities to folks. For more information, call 865-693-6408.

• Baptist Health System of East Tennessee has selected Triad Hospitals Inc. of Plano, Texas, to be its capital partner. The two entities have signed a letter of intent to form a joint venture company that will run Baptist’s four hospitals in Knoxville and Newport — Baptist Hospital of East Tennessee, Baptist Hospital West, Baptist Hospital for Women and Baptist Hospital of Cocke County. Triad Hospitals, Inc., through its affiliates, owns and manages hospitals and ambulatory surgery centers in small cities and selected larger urban markets. The company currently operates 51 hospitals and 12 ambulatory surgery centers in 16 states with approximately 9,300 licensed beds. In addition, through its QHR subsidiary, the company provides consulting, education, intensive resources and management services to hospitals and health systems throughout the United States. The selection of Triad came after an extensive nine-month process led by a strategic planning task force made up of board members and physicians. The task force reviewed many options for Baptist including not-for-profit and for-profit partners, as well as continuing operations as usual. The new partnership is a joint venture, not a sale. Triad will have 80 percent ownership and Baptist will retain 20 percent in the new company. Baptist and Triad will share 50/50 governance of the new company, which will retain the Baptist name. All employees of Baptist will be retained and employed at their current compensation and comparable benefits, which was an important point for the task force. Physicians will make-up at least 50 percent of the Board of Trustees at each hospital. Physicians will also be given the immediate opportunity to invest in the new joint venture. The transaction will not be finalized until it has been approved by the Executive Board of the Tennessee Baptist Convention and by the State Attorney General.

• Catholic Charities of East Tennessee announced Freddi Birdwell has been named as the new community relations and development director. Birdwell received her bachelor’s degree in English education and speech communications from the University of Memphis and completed additional coursework in public relations communications at the University of Tennessee at Knoxville. Formerly the Tennessee director of health initiatives for the American Cancer Society, Birdwell has 15 years of experience in non-profit management.

• April M. Fugate of Kingston, was promoted to branch manager for the West Knoxville Cedar Springs branch of K-25 Federal Credit Union at 9210 Kingston Pike following the transfer of Suzie Warren to the North Knoxville branch. Fugate joined K-25 Credit Union in 1998 as a teller in the Kingston office. Since joining the credit union Fugate earned the distinction of Certified Credit Union Executive, Certified Financial Services Provider and was voted Employee of the Year in  2005.

• Tastefully Simple is celebrating its 11-year anniversary. There are currently 16 members on the Knoxville area team. For more information, call 865-671-3083.

• Image Matters was recently honored for its outstanding contribution to Muratec’s Success.  Bob Lovelace attended the  Muratec Imagemakers Club in Hualalai, Hawaii, in May. Image Matters, locally owned and operated by Bob Lovelace and J.D. Sullivan, received  this award in its first year carrying the Muratec multifunction equipment line. Image Matters is the only Knoxville dealership to receive the award.

• United Community Banks, Inc. recently announced record financial results for the first quarter of 2006. Compared with the first quarter of 2005, United Community Banks achieved a 21 percent increase in total revenue, a 19 percent rise in net income and a 15 percent gain in diluted earnings per share. For the first quarter of 2006, net income rose to $16 million compared with $13.4 million a year earlier. Diluted earnings per share increased to $.39 from $.34 a year ago. Total revenue, on a taxable equivalent basis, was $68.0 million compared with $56.1 million for the first quarter of 2005. Return on tangible equity was 17.66 percent and return on assets was 1.09 percent, compared with 19.86 percent and 1.06 percent, respectively, a year ago.

• A taste of authentic Mexico is coming to Knoxville this spring with the opening of a new Abuelo’s Mexican Food Embassy Restaurant, located at 11299 Parkside Drive in Turkey Point. The new restaurant, which is currently under construction and scheduled to open in June, will be Abuelo’s second location in Tennessee and the company’s 36th site nationwide. Abuelo’s also has a restaurant located in Bartlett, outside of Memphis. The new 7,700-square-foot restaurant will include seating for approximately 240 guests and will employ a staff of approximately 100 employees. The decorative interior features an open-air courtyard atmosphere complete with hand-carved statues and hand-painted murals depicting the history of Mexico. The exterior finishes of the building will include brick and cantera stone trim. Abuelo’s, which blends the best of Mexico through art and fine dining, is well known for its creative, made-from-scratch Mexican dishes and superior service. House Specialties made using beef tenderloin, jumbo shrimp, mahi-mahi, salmon and other top-quality ingredients with unique, homemade sauces and side dishes have earned Abuelo’s the reputation of “raising the bar” and setting a new standard for Mexican food restaurants. Abuelo’s restaurants, which were recently listed in Restaurants & Institutions’  “Top 400 Sales Growth Leaders” annual ranking, are owned and operated by Food Concepts International of Lubbock, Texas. Abuelo’s also recently ranked number 18 in Restaurant Business’ “Top 50 Growth Chains” listing.

 • Lattimore Black Morgan & Cain, has added LaSheryl Jones-Hall, Terri Ott and Machelle Anderson to its Brentwood office. Jones-Hall, previously a trainer at Valley Forge Life Insurance, has been hired as a learning coordinator in the human resources department. She received her Bachelor of Arts and science degree from Tennessee State University. Ott, previously a senior tax associate with Kraft CPAs, has been hired as a staff accountant in the Family Office Department. Ott will be working closely with high wealth families and entrepreneurial businesses. She earned Bachelor of Science and master of accounting degrees from the University of Tennessee-Knoxville.

Anderson, previously a senior accounting clerk with Old Time Pottery, Inc., has been hired as a staff accountant in the internal accounting department. She received her associate of applied science degree from Motlow State Community College.

• Business and Community Services at Pellissippi State Technical Community College is offering an eight-hour ServSafe food handlers course that meets the requirements for manager certification in the food service industry. It will be offered at the Pellissippi Campus on Hardin Valley Road from 8:30 a.m to 5:30 p.m. on June 17. The course provides food safety information that can be used in the food service industry, day cares, schools and other facilities. Certification is achieved by passing an approved multi-choice exam and a ServSafe certificate is attained upon successful completion. Those who complete this course will receive recognition from the International Food Council and permanent registration in the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation’s National Registry. The ServSafe training and certification program is recognized nationally by public health departments in 95 percent of American jurisdictions with training requirements. It provides the resources to help keep food safety as an essential ingredient in every meal. The instructor is Kashi Farmer, owner of White Glove Restaurant Solutions. The fee for the course is $125 plus books. Participants must register 10 days before the class begins by calling Pellissippi State’s Business and Community Services at 865-539-7167 or 539-7166.

• The Farragut Chapter of Business Network International (BNI), a national business referral organization, meets 7:30 to 9 a.m. every Wednesday at Ruby Tuesday’s on Lovell Road.  For more information, call Aleex Conner at 865-691-6083.

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• If you need to learn how to manage projects of all types and sizes, a three day course at Pellissippi State Technical Community College can help. Entitled “Essential Skills for Managing Projects,” the course is presented by the school’s Business and Community Services Division. It will be held June 14-16 at the College’s Pellissippi Campus on Hardin Valley Road. The school has partnered with the East Tennessee chapter of the Project Management Institute to present the course. The cost is $860. For more information about the course, call 865-539-7167.

• Two hundred sixty Knox County eighth-graders spent May 31 and June 1 in 41 area businesses learning what it’s like in the world of work as interns in the Schooled for Success program. Students had the opportunity to explore various careers, accomplish appropriate employee tasks, be mentored by employees and employers, build a work record, and have a real work experience. The internship culminated a year-long program in which students complete a portfolio focusing on self-assessment, career exploration, career planning, pre-employment and employment skills development. Students from all 14 Knox County middle schools interned with many of Knoxville’s businesses, organizations and government agencies.

• Rodefer Moss & Co. PLLC, an accounting firm that has grown in 10 years from 11 employees in one office to more than 150 employees in four Tennessee offices, has been cited as one of the 50 fastest-growing private companies in Tennessee by Business Tennessee Magazine. Rodefer Moss’s sister company, RM Technologies Group, LLC, was also named to the Fast 50 list. RM Technologies provides information technology business solutions. The two companies earned the designation based on their percentage of revenue growth. Rodefer Moss, RM Technologies and other Fast 50 companies will be profiled in the August edition of Business Tennessee Magazine. A company can be considered for the Fast 50 list if it has been in business for three years, generates more than $750,000 in revenue, and employs five or more people.

• The Fresh Market’s Farragut store will celebrate its re-grand opening on June 28. The Farragut Fresh Market’s re-grand opening festivities will include a complimentary coffee brick to the first 1,000 shoppers, sampling stations through-out the store, expert produce, seafood and food connoisseurs from around the country to answer our customer’s food and cooking questions, complimentary barbecue ribs prepared on an oversized outdoor grill and a live jazz band.


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