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• Lalka Tax Services, Inc. recently opened a new branch office in Nashville to reach out to the expanding market in that area.

• Parkwest Medical Center has been recognized by the Tennessee Hospital Association for its long-term growth plan for an employee base of nurses and allied health professionals. The five major elements of the plan are: structuring for effectiveness; targeting specific compensation strategies; hardwiring leadership standards; expanding employee skills; and growing the external talent pipeline. 

• Pellissippi State Technical Community College pumped an average of $117 million each year into the local economy over the past five years, a new study shows. The 19th annual analysis of the economic impact of the college on the Knox and Blount County area revealed that the value of business volume, jobs and individual income amounted to about $586 million in the 2001-2006 period, or $117 million each year.

• Ken Barry, P.E., an environmental engineer with S&ME, Inc., has been recognized by the American Academy of Water Resources Engineers Board of Trustees as having met the requirements for the Diplomate, Water Resources Engineer credential. This achievement signifies an advanced expertise in water resources engineering, superior experience, strong ethics and a commitment to life-long learning and continuing professional development.  Barry is a senior engineer in the Knoxville branch of S&ME, specializing in hydrology and hydraulics, erosion control, stream restoration, solid waste and mining design.

 • The Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance, Board of Pharmacy, announced the statewide launch of the controlled substance database, a tool that will identify prescribing patterns of health care professionals, dispensing patterns of board of pharmacy licensees and usage patterns of Tennessee patients.

• National  Coal  Corp. announced its wholly-owned subsidiary, National Coal Corporation, has terminated discussions with the seller of a surface mining operation in West Virginia. The company entered into a non-binding letter of intent to acquire the facility from an undisclosed seller in November 2006. The proposed purchase was valued at approximately $60 million and the assumption of certain liabilities.

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

• A nanotechnology-oriented forum bringing together academia, industry and budding entrepreneurs will be held April 2-4, at Oak Ridge National Laboratory. For more information, see

• Effective fall 2007, Pellissippi State Technical Community College will combine four business-related programs into one as a way to increase job opportunities for graduates, benefit employers and make more efficient use of resources within the college. Students in business administration will graduate with an Associate of Applied Science degree. The individual A.A.S. degree programs are accredited by the Association of Collegiate Business Schools and Programs and the combined program will continue to be accredited. For more information on the college’s programs, visit

• Carolyn Pendergast, an occupational therapist at The University of Tennessee Medical Center, recently achieved the distinguished designation as a Certified Hand Therapist from the Hand Therapy Certification Commission. Pendergast, one of just six local therapists to earn this credential, completed a series of examinations and clinical studies in order to earn certification from HTTC, the only organization that grants hand therapy certification in the United States, Canada, Great Britain, Ireland, Australia and New Zealand.

• Pellissippi State Technical Community College offers an Occupational Safety and Healthy Administration training course from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., March 1-2. Benefits of this Occupational Safety and Healthy Administration training course can include reduced accidents, worker compensation and premium costs and fines from OSHA. The workshop will be facilitated by David Drinnon, founder and managing partner of Design Management and Associates in East Tennessee. The two-day workshop is $295, and those interested should register by Feb. 26. To learn more or to register, contact LouAnn Vahcic at 865-539-7167.

• Managers, supervisors, team leaders and others wanting to learn about leadership development should plan to attend a workshop at Pellissippi State Technical Community College from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Feb. 9. Facilitating the class is David Drinnon, founder and managing partner of Design Management and Associates in East Tennessee. To learn more or to register, contact LouAnn Vahcic at 865-539-7167.

• Knoxville swim instructor Ed Pemberton was a key speaker at a seminar for swim instructors in Portland, Ore. Seminars were held with lectures provided by key speakers including Pemberton, on subjects pertaining to rationale and technique for advancing a child’s skill level in the water and maximizing their


• Johnson & Galyon Inc. of Knoxville recently received awards for two projects named Best of 2006 by South Central Construction Magazine. Johnson & Galyon was awarded Best Sports and Recreation Project for the renovation of Neyland Stadium at The University of Tennessee. The $20 million project includes new luxury club seating and the addition of new concession and restroom areas. The firm also received an Award of Merit in the Public Building category for the W.L. Mills Auditorium project in Gatlinburg.

• First Tennessee’s parent company, First Horizon National Corp. has continued its decade-long tradition of earning a spot on Fortune magazine’s list of the nation’s 100 Best Companies to Work For. First Horizon is only one of 18 companies to make the list every year since its inception 10 years ago. This year 446 companies vied for a slot on the list, up from 161 in 1998.

•BB&T Corporation reported earnings for the fourth quarter and the full year 2006. For the fourth quarter, net income totaled $250.8 million, or $.46 per diluted share, compared with $429.6 million, or $.78 per diluted share, earned during the fourth quarter of 2005. For the full year 2006, BB&T’s net income was $1.53 billion compared to $1.65 billion earned in 2005. Diluted earnings per share for 2006 totaled $2.81, a decrease of 6.3% compared to $3.00 earned in 2005. Excluding net after-tax merger-related charges or credits, equity-based compensation and nonrecurring items from 2006 and 2005, operating earnings for 2006 totaled $1.74 billion, an increase of 4.1 percent compared to operating earnings of $1.67 billion in 2005. Diluted operating earnings per share totaled $3.20 in 2006, an increase of 5.3 percent compared to $3.04 earned in 2005.

• Collin Cope, owner of Gridiron Burgers, recently opened a location on Clinton Highway. Cope spent 16 years with Ruby Tuesday, Inc., one of the largest casual dining restaurant companies in the United States.

• Determining with some precision when and where disasters are likely to strike is the focus of an Oak Ridge National Laboratory effort that ultimately could save lives. The project takes advantage of a combination of tools developed by a team of researchers headed by Auroop Ganguly of the Department of Energy lab's Computational Sciences and Engineering Division. Ganguly believes the effort could have tremendous significance.


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