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• Safety Smart, 10412 Kingston Pike, will be holding a self-defense awareness class from 9:30 am to noon, Saturday, Sept. 6. Taught by N.S.D.I. Self-defense Awareness and Familiarization Exchange-certified instructors, this class incorporates the S.A.F.E. program. Personal safety information, prevention, options and introductory physical techniques are taught using various methods with hands-on practice. Class registration is $25, and all participants will receive a complimentary pepper spray. Call 865-539-3434 to register.

• Parkwest Medical Center recently recognized past and current volunteers with a new plaque highlighting volunteers with more than 2,500 hours of service.  This plaque honoring their exceptional service is on permanent display near the main entrance. 

• “Striving for Excellence” is the theme of this year’s annual education forum jointly sponsored by the Knoxville, Maryville and Oak Ridge Chapters of International Association of Administrative Professionals, Tuesday, Oct. 14, at the Pellissippi State Performing Arts Center. Registration for the seminar begins at 8:30 a.m. Cost of the seminar is $35; Chapter students are given a discount rate of $10. Early deadline for registration is Sept. 30. Registration information is available on the Oak Ridge Chapter’s Web site at

• The Oak Ridge Chapter, International Association of Administrative Professionals met to install the incoming year’s officers for 2008-2009. Cristal Case CPS, was elected the incoming Oak Ridge Chapter president. Other officers installed were: Daisy Mullins, treasurer; Lynn Christman, secretary; Sherry Tipton, board member; Delaine McGhee, advisor; Nancy McElmeel CPS, board member; Brenda Lee CPS, vice president; and Rita Ayers CPS, president-elect.

• A new financial group assembled at Smith Barney’s Knoxville office has brought together a local team with client assets expected to eventually reach $1 billion. The newly assembled team is the Venable, Cantey, Erickson Group at Smith Barney. The new group, which brings together a planning practice and a portfolio management practice, will be the largest financial advisor team in the community.

• First Tennessee recently named Mark Sluder as manager of its new Hardin Valley financial center. Located at 10606 Hardin Valley Road, the center is First Tennessee’s 40th financial center in the greater Knoxville area. Sluder joined First Tennessee in 2006. He previously served for four years in retail management, preceded by five years as a U.S. Naval officer. He is a Farragut resident.

• Fleet Feet Sports is proud to sponsor the Marine Corps 2008 Mud Run, beginning at 9 a.m., Saturday, Sept. 13, at Melton Hill Park. The challenging course consists roughly of three miles of off-road running, including obstacles, hills, and mud pits. Fleet Feet recommends wearing old clothing and shoes and long pants.

• Gary Moss, a 24-year realtor, opened a new Knoxville real estate company, Keller Williams Realty. Keller Williams was founded in 1983 by Gary Keller and Joe Williams in Texas, who began franchising in 1991.

• Responding to consumer demand, Check ‘n Go, a leading provider of consumer financial services, announced the launch of a new product offering, check cashing. Check cashing services are being piloted in 170 Check ‘n Go stores in Michigan, Kentucky and Tennessee, with plans to expand the offering to more than 1,300 stores nationwide through early 2009.

• BB&T Corporation announced longtime Chief Executive Officer John A. Allison will retire as CEO Dec. 31. He will continue as chairman of the BB&T Corporation board of directors until Dec. 31, 2009. The board recently voted unanimously to promote Chief Operating Officer Kelly S. King, the No. 2-ranking executive manager at BB&T since 2004, to succeed Allison as CEO and president. King also was elected to the board. BB&T will name a successor to King as COO at a later date.

• The board of directors of BB&T Corporation declared the 2008 fourth-quarter dividend of $0.47 per share, a 2.2 percent increase over the $0.46 paid in the fourth quarter of 2007. The dividend will be paid Nov. 3 to shareholders of record as of Oct. 17.

• Jeff Grebe, Mike Grebe and Dan Evans of Weichert, Realtors Advantage Plus recently completed the Weichert Management Academy, four days of educational sessions covering all aspects of the Weichert way of doing business. Held at corporate headquarters in Morris Plains, N.J., the Academy program is a requisite training course for new members of the Weichert Real Estate Affiliates network.

• Mountain Commerce Bank has announced the relocation of the current branch located at 249 N. Peters Road to a new location at 320 N. Cedar Bluff Road, Suite 101. The new branch opened for business on Sept. 2.

• The following physicians have joined the Association of University Radiologists, P.C., which provides coverage for UT Medical Center, Morristown Hamblen Healthcare System, Hawkins County Hospital, Hancock County Hospital, and University Radiology at Turkey Creek Imaging Center: J. Mark McKinney, M.D., who will serve as the chairman of the department of radiology at UT; James Boyd, M.D. and Stephen Brown, M.D., neuroradiologists; Geoffrey Laing, M.D., Deanna Taylor-Gantte, M.D., and Rong Zeng, M.D., body imaging specialists.

• Laura Braden, a 1999 graduate of Farragut High School, is serving as vice president of Mercury Public Affairs in Sacramento, Calif. From 2006-2008, Braden served as deputy communications director for Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger. Braden also previously served as deputy director of operations and planning for John McCain for President 2008.

• The Department of Religious Studies at The University of Tennessee has been selected to host a 2008-2009 Schusterman Visiting Israel Professor. Rivka Ribak, senior lecturer in the department of communication at the University of Haifa, will teach and lecture at UT and in the Jewish community and act as a liaison between several constituencies on and off campus. She will teach two classes each semester, including “Israeli Filmmakers: Cinema and Society” and “Israeli Media Scholarship: Cultural Approaches.”

• Jameson Inn hotel brand was once again ranked No. 1 in customer satisfaction nationwide in its segment through the second quarter of 2008 according to the Market Metrix Hospitality Index. Jameson Inn has earned this ranking every year for the past four years.

• Knoxville/Knox County Metropolitan Planning Commission presented 13 awards for development and environmental excellence at its 27th annual awards dinner Thursday, Aug. 21. Winners for outstanding development are: residential use: covered bridge at Hardin Valley Subdivision; commercial, industrial or office: Sysco Food Systems; historic restoration: Knox Heritage Restore America Project; renovation: Burlington Branch Library; special use: Victor Ashe Park; neighborhood/civic achievement: Lonsdale United for Change and Knoxville South Waterfront Vision Plan. Winners for environmental conservation achievement: covered bridge at Hardin Valley Subdivision, Turning Leaf Trails Subdivision, Sysco Food Systems, roundabout at Concord Road and Knoxville South Waterfront Vision Plan.

• Dr. Stephen Boyce recently became a Bronze Level Chairman’s Council member with the Obesity Action Coalition.

• Knoxville-based Mediapulse recently earned international recognition for its redesign of the Web site of the Knoxville chapter of the American Marketing Association. Mediapulse’s work on the site earned a bronze award in the Summit Creative Awards, under the category of Membership Web site.

• Elmer Pinzon, MD, MPH, recently opened University Spine and Sports Specialists, PLLC, 11440 Parkside Drive, Suite 302. Pinzon is Board Certified in physical medicine and rehabilitation and fellowship-trained in minimally-invasive, interventional spinal procedures, musculoskeletal and sports medicine. For information, call 865-305-6333 or


• Muscular Dystrophy Association will launch its first-ever national online auction at in conjunction with the 43rd annual Jerry Lewis MDA Labor Day Telethon. The auction features an array of unique specialty items, including more than 2,500 items donated by celebrities, sports figures, MDA sponsors and other friends of the Association. All proceeds benefit the Association.

• Medi-Spa, a division of Knoxville Dermatology Group, has achieved “Diamond Status” with Allergan, the makers of Botox Cosmetic and Juvéderm.   Medi-Spa is the first dermatology practice in the state to receive the “Diamond Status” distinction. Botox Cosmetic and Juvéderm are injectable fillers that reduce the signs of fine lines and wrinkles.

• Betty Sonnenfeldt, RN, team Leader of the Cardiac Rehab Center at Baptist Hospital Riverside, was selected as a national winner of the 2008 Sydney & Helen Shuman Nurse Recognition Award. It is given each year by the national headquarters of The Mended Hearts, Inc. to recognize a nurse in the cardiac field for outstanding performance and support to Mended Hearts. Betty was nominated by Knoxville Chapter 24 of Mended Hearts for her 20 years of outstanding service to the chapter.

• Carlton M. Long has joined the Mercy Health Partners Foundation as the Regional Vice President for Philanthropy. Previously with Brown Group in Chattanooga, Long has served on various boards including the Knoxville Museum of Art, Salvation Army, Juvenile Diabetes Foundation, University of Tennessee Alliance of Women Philanthropists and the Knoxville Botanical Garden Arboretum.

• Gables & Gates, Realtors congratulates Janet DeBusk Hensley, agent of the month for July. Janet chose the National Multiple Sclerosis Society Mid South Chapter as her charity of choice. Society helps East Tennesseans affected by MS by funding cutting-edge research, driving change through advocacy, facilitating professional education and providing programs and services that help people with MS and their families move their lives forward. Susie Lash, owner and president of Gables & Gates, presented a $1,000 check to Deanna Jones of the NMSS Mid South Chapter.

• Lewis Group Architects has welcomed two members to its team: Kevin Siddel has joined the architectural staff and Stacey Brockman has been hired as office manager.

• Hope Resource Center has scheduled its “Walk for Life,” Saturday, Sept. 6. Four walk sites are: Kingston Pike Baptist Church in Lenoir City, Lakeshore Park, Chilhowee Hills Baptist off Asheville Highway and Grace Baptist Church off Oak Ridge Highway. Registration opens at 8:30 a.m. and the walk begins at 9 a.m. For more information about the walk, call 865-525-4673.


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