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business briefs

• Conway Marketing recently hired J.D. Sizemore as a copywriter. In addition to writing copy for clients’ advertising, public relations, Web sites and direct mail programs, Sizemore also will serve in an account service role for Conway.

• SunTrust Mortgage, Inc. welcomes Senior Mortgage Loan Consultant Debbie Windisch to the SunTrust Farragut Branch, 11441 Kingston Pike.

• Realtor Mike LeGate has joined the growing sales team at Weichert, Realtors - Advantage Plus. Serving East Tennessee, he specializes in residential, commercial and farm sales. He is a member of the Knoxville Area Association of Realtors and the National Association of Realtors.

• Katie Allison Granju has joined Ackermann PR in the newly created position of Director of Social Media. Katie brings a wealth of experience in technology, interactive media, journalism and online community building to the firm.

• Trade-bank of Knoxville received several national Achievement Awards in a competition between Tradebank locations in the United States, Canada and Europe. Marc Davis received the Ace Award for extraordinary vision, dedication and commitment. Jeff Jones received the Bronze Sales Award for top sales. Winners of the Million Dollar Circle Award for brokers producing over one million dollars in trade volume were Vanessa Caja, Connie Caple, and Tonya Wilde. Tradebank’s Knoxville location also received the President’s Award for outstanding excellence of operation, the Century Club Award for exceptional achievement in acquiring 141 new accounts for the year, and the Millionaire Club Award for producing over 4.7 million dollars in trade volume.

• Morris Barocas, MD, received a certificate of achievement from Trustees of the Tennessee Medical Association in recognition of contributions and participation in Physician Leadership College.

• Top agents from Weichert, Realtors Advantage Plus in Knoxville took bows at the annual banquet hosted by the Weichert Tennessee-Kentucky-Alabama Broker Council. Christie Sox, Mary-Ann Linkowski and Terry Patton stood out as inductees into the national organization’s ambassador club. Joining the 2008 executive club were Carol Zimmerman, Marcy Halberstadt, James Corbitt and Elizabeth McDaniel. Agents named to the certificate club, receiving Sales Achievement Awards were Regina Oster, Dottie Webb and Ted Fisher.

• Lilly Rayson, a specialist in residential sales, has joined Weichert, Realtors - Advantage Plus in Knoxville. She serves Knox, Loudon, Blount and Anderson counties as a member of the Knoxville Area Association of Realtors.

• Kroger’s Knoxville customers and associates have stepped up to help those in need with the donation of 1,343 cases of non-perishable food – worth almost $25,000 – to the Second Harvest Food Bank of East Tennessee. Knoxville residents donated the food through Kroger’s 2008 “Can Hunger” program, which also raised an additional monetary donation of more than $14,000. Kroger delivered the truckloads of food March 31.

• Weichert, Realtors Advantage Plus has added two new Realtors to its sales team, Keith and Dorothy Allison. The husband and wife team serves the residential needs of clients in Knoxville and surrounding areas. Both are members of the Knoxville Area Association of Realtors.

• Dennis Rowe, market general manager for Rural/Metro, recently was named president of Tennessee Ambulance Service Association at its annual banquet in Gatlinburg. Rowe will serve as president of the association for two years and as past-president the following two years.

• Kroger brands experienced their strongest year-over-year growth during the fourth quarter of fiscal 2008. Approximately 27 percent of its fourth-quarter grocery revenue came from sales of its exclusive Kroger brands, which reached a record-high of 35 percent of grocery unit sales, with exceptionally strong growth for the Value and Private Selection tiers.

• SunTrust Banks, Inc. has announced that veteran SunTrust banker, R. King Purnell, retired March 31 after 34 years of service. Purnell was named group executive vice president for the Central Group Commercial Real Estate Division of SunTrust Banks, Inc. in 2002. Purnell is active in the Knoxville community, currently serving as chairman for the Partnership for Neighborhood Improvement, a board member for Mercy Health Partners Foundation Board and treasurer for the YMCA.

• Pinnacle Financial Partners has recruited long-time financial services professionals Michelle Carr and Natalie Readett to serve as senior vice presidents and financial advisors. Carr brings more than 20 years of experience from First Tennessee Bank. Readett brings more than 23 years of experience from Regions Bank (formerly AmSouth First American National Bank).

• SunTrust Bank recognizes SunTrust Mortgage Loan Consultant Wendy Gibbs as winner of the Women’s Impact Award. SunTrust East Tennessee Diversity Site Council Women’s Sub-Committee presents the award, inspired by women’s history month. Gibbs is the first ever to receive this honor, which will be given to a SunTrust employee each quarter.

• The Heart of Knoxville Career and Resource Center will host the 2009 Spring Job Fair/Mas Trabajos from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., Thursday, April 16, at the Magnolia Avenue Campus of Pellissippi State Technical Community College, 1610 E. Magnolia Ave. The job fair is free and designed to attract both English- and Spanish-speaking candidates. The Spring Job Fair/Mas Trabajos is a three-pronged effort by the Career Center, Pellissippi State and the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of East Tennessee.

• Jonathan Dee, MD recently joined Summit Medical Group at the Northshore Drive office and is welcoming new patients. Dee attended medical school at James H. Quillen College of Medicine at East Tennessee State University in Johnson City and completed his internship and residency at the Spartanburg Regional Family Medicine Residency Program in Spartanburg, S.C. Dee is Board Certified in Family Practice.

• Knoxville Association of Women Executives is offering $1,000 college scholarships to two female students. Requirements are as follows: a student must have completed at least one semester at a four-year accredited college and currently be enrolled to take classes, be female, be available for an interview, provide a copy of a current college transcript, not be an immediate family member of a KAWE member and meet the May 1 deadline. For more information, e-mail

• First Tennessee recently promoted Michelle Hardin to senior vice president in the private client services division. Hardin, a relationship manager for First Tennessee, has been with the bank since 1988.

• FirstBank has hired Jon Fox to fill the new position of chief information officer. Fox will lead the IT division of the bank, ensuring efficiency and overseeing help-desk support, network services, IT operations and application management.

• BusinessTN magazine recently released a list of Tennesse’s “Accounting’s Finest.” Among those listed were Mike Cain, Steve Dodson, David Morgan, Sid Pilson, Danny Pressley and David Wood of Lattimore Black Morgan & Cain, PC (LBMC). This peer-review list is compiled based upon recommendations of Tennessee businesses, attorneys and accountants.

• Matt Noss, president of Senior Accessibility Contractors, recently earned the Certified Aging-In-Place Specialist designation, identifying him as one of the building industry’s top professionals with skills and knowledge specific to home modifications for aging-in-place.

• Pellissippi State Technical Community College’s Business and Community Services is offering industry employees the opportunity to prepare for the shorter Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design AP exam.

• LBMC Employment Partners, LLC has added Katie Berk in its Knoxville office. Berk will join LBMC Employment Partners, LLC as an HR assistant, providing assistance to clients as well as internal support in the area of human resource consulting.


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