Faces and places

Deborah Rector has been named medical unit director at Lawrence Memorial Hospital. Rector’s duties include managing the 48-bed medical unit, leading the department’s 73 employees, and assuring the delivery of quality nursing care.

Rector previously was assistant director of the medical unit. She has five years of hospital management experience and graduated from Washburn University with a Bachelor of Science degree in nursing.

¢ Dr. Ron Weiner presented information about asthma at the Asthma Educator Workshop in November in Overland Park.

The workshop was designed for physicians, physician’s assistants, nurses, respiratory therapists and pharmacists seeking to develop an asthma education program for patients. It was sponsored by the American Lung Association of Kansas.

He also gave an asthma update for staff physicians at Atchison Hospital and attended the national conference of the American College of Asthma, Allergy and Immunology in Anaheim, Calif.

Weiner is a partner in Asthma, Allergy and Rheumatology Associates in Lawrence and Topeka.

¢ Several area residents have been distinguished as exceptional technical service professionals by achieving the highest certification level – master technician – from DaimlerChrysler. Only 5 percent of service professionals nationwide achieve this status.

The following service professionals, of Jim Clark Motors Inc., Lawrence, received the certification: Gary Connelly, P. Greer, D. Hackathorn, Randy Hans and Rick Schlotman.

Earning master technician status reflects years of dedicated effort to complete hundreds of hours of training and achievement of exceptional customer satisfaction scores.

¢ Rob Wendland, owner of Wendland Performance Services in Lawrence, has been appointed to serve as a member of the Business Advisory Council of the National Republican Congressional Committee.

Council members work with committee officials to see that small businesses have a voice in Washington, D.C. Council officials say Wendland has supported Republican ideals, particularly debt reduction and tax reform.

Wendland also has been recognized as a “2005 Businessman of the Year” by the council. He was among a dozen winners of the award, given to “the top U.S business leaders who have successfully integrated business and financial success with the support of Republican ideals.”

¢ Peggy Johnson, a senior financial adviser for Ameriprise Financial Services Inc. in Lawrence, rated among the top 27 percent of advisers participating in a client-satisfaction survey whose clients ranked them highly in areas including overall satisfaction and financial knowledge.

Johnson was among 2,814 advisers to participate in the annual Ameriprise survey. A key measure on the survey is each client’s overall satisfaction with an adviser, which covers the adviser’s knowledge of financial products and the economy, providing high-quality advice and proactively contacting clients.

Johnson’s office is at 3200 Mesa Way, Suite B.

¢ The Eldridge Hotel sponsored the 11th annual Eldridge Gingerbread Festival & Auction on Dec. 7. More than 120 graham cracker and gingerbread homes were donated. This year’s festival has generated more than $20,000 in donations for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Douglas County. Winners in the graham cracker divisions were Mason Denneler, 5-8 age group; Ashley Beiter, 9-12 age group; Ainsley Burke, BryAnn Burke and Cali Burke, 13-18 age group. Winners in the gingerbread division: Jeannie Robinson, first; Helen Benefiel, second; and Toni Detherage, third.

¢ Douglas County Extension Council elected new officers and board members during its annual meeting Dec. 1. The new officers: Frank Male, chairman; Gary Price, vice chairman; Annette Larson, treasurer; and Cheryl Hunsinger, secretary. Other board members elected during the meeting: Jana Dunbar, Bruce Flanders, John Bradley, Doug Gaston and Lori Queen.

Ralph and Gloria Leonhard received the Certificate of Appreciation by the Douglas County Extension Council for their years of service.

The following retiring members of the council received Extension Recognition Certificates for their service and dedication: Ron Baker, Mariann Bradley, Sue Ashcraft, David Nutt and Peach Madl.

¢ Roger Martin, a longtime editor and writer at Kansas University, has taken a new job with the Kansas Health Institute, a Topeka-based independent nonprofit health policy and research organization.

Since 1980, Martin has been a writer and editor for KU. He worked in the offices of University Relations and of Research, Graduate Studies and Public Service, as well as for the KU Center for Research.

He has written about research at KU for various media. He also has worked as a reporter and taught composition and science writing.

Martin started his new job as creative director earlier this month.

¢ Dave Hill, Baldwin, was elected to serve on the Valley Hope Assn. board of directors during the organization’s annual meeting in Norton. Valley Hope is a nationally-recognized chemical dependency treatment provider with 23 centers in seven states. Hill filled the expired term of Tony Jewell, Garden City, who retired from the board after 33 years of service.

Hill is president of MidAmerica Bank in Baldwin and Hilco Mortgage Corp., which has offices in Baldwin, Lawrence and Topeka. He is an active member in several community organizations including the Baldwin Chamber of Commerce, Lawrence Chamber of Commerce, Lawrence Home Builders Assn., Battle of Blackjack & Nature Park Board and the Lumberyard Art Center Board.

¢ Karmel Astarae has joined the Midland Healing Institute as Reiki practitioner. The institute, a program of Midland Hospice Care, focuses on healing grief and transforming losses. Grief and loss can occur from various life situations, such as illness, death of a loved one or pet, divorce and other major life transitions. Astarae’s specialty is working in the field of energy medicine to balance mind, body and spirit.

Astarae is owner of Spirit Whispers Holistic Health and Intuitive Counseling. She has 12 years of experience in alternative healing modalities and has assisted clients in self-empowerment and creating optimum health. She is a certified EMF balancing technique training teacher and iridologist.

Coming events

The Lawrence Workforce Center and the Kansas Department of Commerce are sponsoring an employer workshop, “Kansas Business Development Incentives,” from 8:30 a.m. to 11 a.m. Jan. 19 at the Lawrence Workforce Center, 2540 Iowa, Suite R.

The seminar will address tax credits and exemptions, industrial training of new employees and retraining existing workers, trade show assistance, and other incentives available to businesses. No fee will be charged but space is limited. To make reservations, call Rodney Carr at 840-9675 or e-mail him at rcarr@kansascommerce.com.