Keeping Up with People, December 2008


Unity Group congratulatesPoehlman, Billingsley

The Unity Group congratulates Greg Poehlman, commercial insurance broker and partner, on successfully completing the Certified Risk Management designation.

The Certified Risk Management program involves academics as well as practical application and is offered by the National Alliance for Insurance Education & Research.

With 20 years of insurance experience and a concentration of risk management, Poehlman works closely with local and regional firms to evaluate risk through programs such as safety programs implementation, labor and industries consulting, and risk transfer methods.

Andy Billingsley of The Unity Group has received The National Underwriter Company’s Group Benefits Disability Specialist designation. Billingsley earned the designation after attending The Hartford’s Group Benefits Disability School called the “Vault” program in Chicago. from Sept. 29 to Oct. 2.


New sales associate joinsBrooks Manufacturing

Brooks Manufacturing has announced the addition of Elizabeth Toney as a sales associate.

Toney graduated in 2001 from the University of Central Arkansas at Conway with a bachelor’s degree in fine arts. After college, she worked for four years at Moore Electronics, a cable manufacturer for the electronics industry.

She most recently held the position of account manager for Celerity, Inc., a manufacturing company out of Portland, Ore., that produces precision instruments for the global semiconductor industry.

As a sales associate, Toney coordinates client accounts, schedules company events and meetings, provides purchasing assistance, and fulfills a variety of additional office duties. She began her new position at the beginning of September.


Gov. Chris Gregoire announces appointments

Timothy Douglas of Bellingham has been appointed to the Whatcom Community College board of trustees effective Oct. 1 and ending Sept. 30, 2013. Douglas was mayor of the city of Bellingham and a Peace Corps director. He has been a board member for organizations such as Kulshan Community Land Trust and Whatcom Coalition for Healthy Communities.

Sonia Arevalo-Hays of Ferndale has been reappointed to the Community College District No. 25 board of trustees effective Oct. 1 and ending Sept. 30, 2013. Arevalo-Hayes is the co-owner of TC Trading Company. She is a member of the Marine Hotel Association, Whatcom Hispanic Organization and Washington Latino Business Association.


Brooks Manufacturing appoints new plant managers

Brooks Manufacturing has promoted Philip Reeck to plant manager and Marla Anderson as assistant plant manager.

Reeck has been with Brooks Manufacturing for more than seven years, serving as assistant plant manager for the 18 months prior to his promotion. Before his experience at Brooks, he spent more than 22 years working in Georgia-Pacific’s shipping department.

As plant manager, Reeck is in charge of overall production, orders and quality control.

Anderson started with Brooks in January of 2008 as a shipping manager until being promoted to assistant plant manager. She also comes to Brooks from Georgia-Pacific, after working for 18 years in a variety of roles that ranged from accountant to shift supervisor. As assistant plant manager, Anderson will supervise employees as well as monitor overall plant production and overflow.


Physical therapists join Lynden Therapy Specialists

Lynden Therapy Specialists has added Cheryl Batty and Michael Hawaka to its team of physical and occupational therapists.

A doctor of physical therapy for more than 12 years, Batty specializes in foot and ankle rehabilitation as well as running, biking and lower back issues. She is a manual therapist that provides hands-on techniques and is trained in the Maitland and Mulligan methods. She is an American Physical Therapy Association certified clinical instructor and also performs injury prevention screenings at Fairhaven Runners.

Hawaka has been a physical therapist for 16 years and is licensed in nine states. He most recently worked with Northwest Physical Therapy Sports Rehabilitation in Mount Vernon. While Hawaka has experience in treating a wide mix of injuries and disabilities, he particularly enjoys working with neck, shoulder, lower back and vestibular (inner ear) problems.

While at Northsound Physical Therapy in Marysville, he launched a community program called Return to Running to help recreational and competitive runners prevent injuries. He spent four years as an on-call traveling physical therapist, which allowed him to work from Sitka, Alaska, to Yuba City, Calif., to help patients in home health, acute care, skilled nursing and outpatient facilities.


Health and Exercise Prescriptions hires personal trainer

Health and Exercise Prescriptions has added personal trainer Brian Hargrove to its team. A local Bellingham resident, Hargrove has been involved in the fitness industry for more than three years and has experience with a wide variety of clients, ranging from healthy individuals to those with special medical needs. His experience comes from a unique one-on-one setting where the relationship between client and trainer becomes a team effort in achieving health goals and fitness.

Hargrove currently holds certification as a personal trainer through American Council on Exercise.


Personal trainer completes 4-day advanced seminar
in Florida

Susan Guttzeit, licensed massage practitioner, stretching specialist and ACE-certified personal trainer, has completed a four-day advanced active isolated stretching and strengthening seminar in West Palm Beach, Fla. Guttzeit assists clients in stretching in her private practice located in Fairhaven and teaches active isolated stretching classes at Bellingham Tennis Club/Fairhaven Fitness.

Active isolated stretching is a gentle and effective way to release muscle tension and promote recovery from injuries.


Dr. Roy Taylor earns phlebology certification

Roy Taylor, M.D., of Bayside Vein and Laser Center, is among the first group of physicians in the U.S. to earn board certification from the American Board of Phlebology.

Phlebology is a new specialty recently approved by the American Medical Association in recognition of the advanced technology supporting innovative in-office treatment of varicose veins and other vein diseases.

With Dr. Taylor’s knowledge and experience in providing patient care in the treatment of vein disorders, he is one of only two physicians in Washington state and 248 nationwide who hold this certification.


Hotel Bellwether’s Harborside Bistro welcomes new executive chef

Hotel Bellwether’s Harborside Bistro has announced Robert Pinski as its new executive chef.

Pinski rose to the position after spending six years in the kitchen at the Harborside Bistro. Methodically rising up the ranks, Pinski held the positions of sous chef, lead line cook, grill cook and pantry cook before his recent promotion.

His menu, which will launch in winter 2008, will feature Pacific Northwest cuisine created with the freshest local ingredients.

Pinski graduated from Lake Washington Technical College and also trained at the Seattle Art Institute’s Culinary Academy.


Peoples Bank announces new management

Peoples Bank has appointed Jan Armstrong to manage the new Barkley Village Financial Center, and Troy Wills has been promoted to manager at the bank’s downtown Bellingham office.

Armstrong started at Peoples Bank in 1992 at the Cordata office with more than 19 years of experience in financial services. She was promoted to vice president and in 2001 became branch manager of the bank’s Bellingham Financial Center.

Armstrong has been named Affiliate of the Year by the Washington State Association of Realtors and has been a member of the Kiwanis for 17 years. She has also been the active treasurer for Whatcom County Association of Realtors for the past six years.

In her new position, Armstrong will lead business development programs and oversee branch operations at both the Barkley center and the existing Barkley Village office inside Haggen.

Wills joined Peoples Bank in 2005 with more than 14 years of banking experience as branch manager of the Barkley Village office. He was promoted to assistant vice president and is active in the local community as an ambassador for Whatcom Chamber of Commerce, the vice president for Whatcom Young Professionals and a board member for the Barkley Merchant Association.

In his new position, he will lead business activities in downtown Bellingham.


Peoples Bank promotes Repanich, Guildner to executive vice president

Peoples Bank has promoted Anthony Repanich to executive vice president of retail banking and marketing, and Charlie Guildner has been promoted to executive vice president of real estate and marine lending.

Repanich joined Peoples Bank in 1993 and has held several positions for the bank, including financial services representative, branch manager and vice president of retail sales and marketing. He was named senior vice president in 2001.

Under his new position, Repanich oversees operations of the bank’s 27 branch locations and directs corporate marketing efforts.

Guildner joined Peoples Bank in 2000 with 15 years of mortgage lending experience. He has supervised the bank’s marine lending division and became department manager of the bank’s real estate division in 2005. He has been a senior vice president as well.

Now, in his new position, he manages the bank’s eight home loan centers and two marine loan centers located throughout Washington.


Lisa Crosier Skincare and Beauty Boutique welcomes aesthetician

Lisa Crosier Skincare and Beauty Boutique, a Bellingham business since 1994, recently expanded its services with the addition of aesthetician Erin Koidal.

Koidal has five years of experience at a Bellingham spa and specializes in European spa facials, ultrasonic/microcurrent skin treatments and paraffin treatments for hands and feet.


Sunrise Rotary Club elects Smith as board president

The Bellingham Sunrise Rotary Club has selected Michael E. Smith, FAIA from Zervas Group Architects, as board president for 2008-2009. Smith is a charter member of the Sunrise Rotary Club, which was founded in 1990 under a joint sponsorship by the Bellingham and Bellingham Bay Rotary Clubs.

Rotary is an international service organization consisting of 1.2 million business and professional leaders in over 200 countries around the world.


Personal chef service opens in Blaine

Executive chef Gail Walker has opened The Everyday Gourmet, a personal chef service for Christmas parties, private parties, brunches or special dinners for two to 100 guests.

The Everyday Gourmet specializes in quality, gourmet and low-cost parties. In this service, the client buys the food and Walker prepares it in the convenience of the host’s home. Full service and cleanup are also offered in the low price.

For custom-designed menus for special occasions, shopping lists, wine and beverage suggestions, contact executive chef Gail Walker and the Everyday Gourmet at 392-8527.

Gail Walker was featured on Comcast’s popular show “A Taste Of,” during her ownership of Emerald Bay Events.


RE/MAX agents rank in regional top 100

Chris Weitzel, Pete Coy and Brandon Nelson have all ranked in the top 100 in the Pacific Northwest Region for total commissions earned through August 2008 for RE/MAX International. The Pacific Northwest Region consists of Idaho, Montana, Oregon and Washington.

Weitzel works out of the Sudden Valley RE/MAX office and has been working in the real estate industry for more than 20 years in Whatcom County. He joined RE/MAX in 2000.

Coy and Nelson both work out of the Lakeway RE/MAX office. Coy has been in the industry for more than 20 years as well and joined RE/MAX in 2007. Nelson joined in 2007 and was newly licensed previous to that.


WWU Ross Distinguished Professor tours
Western Canada

Western Washington University professor Stephen Blank, WWU’s Ross Distinguished Professor of Canada-United States Business and Economic Relations, recently toured Western Canada as part of the United States Speaker and Specialist Program.

The Bureau of International Information runs the program, which selects U.S. experts to act as consultants, give lectures and lead seminars pertaining to their specialty.

During his week-long trip, Blank met with members of government, chambers of commerce, media, and the academic community to discuss transportation and trade challenges facing Canada and the United States.

Blank is the co-chair of the North American Transportation Competitiveness Research Council and serves as a senior fellow at the North American Center for Trans-border Studies at Arizona State University; at Columbia University’s Center for Energy, Marine Transport, and Public Policy; and at the Centre for International Governance Innovation.

The Ross Chair engages in teaching, community outreach, and scholarly activity related to business and economic relations between Canada and the United States.

This fall, Blank is teaching MBA 539, Topics in International Business.


Sales associates earn designation

Patty Gray and Sheri Hasselswerth at Fairhaven Realty have recently earned the Certified Negotiation Expert Designation.

The designation is awarded to practitioners who complete two eight-hour classes. The certified negotiation expert professional has been trained in advanced negotiation techniques and approaches. This training enables agents to better help clients achieve their goals.


Interconnect hires account professional

Herman Laninga has joined Interconnect Systems as a senior account representative.

Laninga most recently served as general manager and senior account representative for Network Solutions NW and Office Systems Northwest. In his new position, he will assist businesses with the selection of telephone systems as well as infrastructure cabling and wiring projects. Laninga was raised in Whatcom County and received his degree from Western Washington University.


Piano teacher elected president of Washington State Music Teachers Association

Piano teacher Mary Walby has been elected president of the Bellingham chapter of the Washington State Music Teachers Association.

Walby oversees the duties of the chapter’s multiple committees that bring educational and performing opportunities to students and teachers in Whatcom County. Members include mostly private teachers as well as faculty from Western Washington University.

One of Walby’s goals during her term as president is to increase the diversity of the group’s membership. She has more than 25 years of experience in teaching and performing. After completing piano and pedagogy studies at Washington State University, she moved to Bellingham and established her local studio.

In addition to providing piano instruction, Walby plays for weddings and other special events.


Lee, Grimstead complete certifications
as business advisors

Debra Lee and Eric Grimstead have recently completed their certifications as certified business advisors for Western Washington University’s Small Business Development Center.

Sponsored by the Washington Small Business Development Center network in Spokane, the Washington Certified Business Advisor Certification program is designed to create a common body of knowledge and standards of performance among a diverse group of professionals.

For more information, contact the SBDC at (360) 733-4014 or visit


Pioneer Ford in Lynden increases service
department staff

Pioneer Ford in Lynden recently expanded its service department by appointing a service manager and two service consultants.

Jim Botts has been named manager of Ford’s service department, which includes nine technicians and handles all makes and models. Botts brings 22 years of experience in vehicle service departments with Ford and Chevrolet dealerships.

Pioneer Ford has also hired Luke Croney and Brian Smith as service consultants, who frequently communicate with customers on the needs and status of their vehicles from the first inquiry until they’re ready for pickup. Croney, a Lynden resident, spent the last 10 years in the service department of a Bellingham dealership.

Smith, a longtime Whatcom County resident and a Sehome High School graduate, also has 10 years of experience in service departments.


Bellhaven Yacht Sales adds Oberlander to staff.

Alan Oberlander has joined the team in the yacht sales division of Bellhaven Yacht Sales and Charters.

Oberlander brings 23 years of yacht experience in both sailing and power boating. He started out working for Ron Pearson marine fueling in Southern California, which led to the exposure of multiple power and sailboats throughout the California marine industry.

Oberlander has also worked as a staff photographer for the San Diego Log, one of the largest marine publications on the west coast. He freelance writes about West Coast and Northwest cruising and is a cruising consultant about local and offshore cruising.


Sterling Real Estate agents awarded with designation

Brian and Shenandoah Myrick, Nancy Nelson and Valerie Hauter from Sterling Real Estate Group have been awarded the Certified Negotiation Expert designation.

The designation is achieved by real estate professionals who have obtained formal training in the art of negotiation. The certification puts them as agents in the top one percent of all agents nationally.


Whatcom Women’s Network announces changes

Whatcom Women’s Network, a networking and support group for local business people, now meets at noon each Thursday at On Rice in Fairhaven.

Members welcome guests to attend and invite business owners and community leaders who would like the opportunity to be guest speakers.

New officers are director Julie Carpenter, RE/MAX Realtor, and treasurer Brenda Bringhurst, co-owner of Creative Mortgage Solutions. Continuing as secretary is Chris Hansen, an independent beauty consultant with Mary Kay Cosmetics.

Outgoing officers are director Virginia Malmquist, counselor-therapist, and longtime treasurer Judy Paulson, Paulson Financial Services.


Barron Heating managers earn certifications for testing duct systems

John Bateman and Bryant Mattson, operations managers for Barron Heating and Air Conditioning, have earned certifications for testing the efficiency of duct sealing in homes and buildings.

The Performance Tested Comfort Systems certification ensures that Bateman and Mattson are qualified to test duct systems and make appropriate recommendations for improving their energy efficiency. The Barron Heating managers completed a class taught by David Hales, a Washington State University building science and energy specialist.

Bateman has more than 30 years of experience related to heating, ventilation and air-conditioning systems, including the last six years at Barron Heating.

Mattson has been with Barron Heating for 13 years and has more than 20 years of experience.


Edward Jones Office in Lynden adds Hendricks, Mouat

The Edward Jones office in Lynden’s Bender Plaza has appointed financial advisors Brett Hendricks and Will Mouat.

Hendricks, born and raised in Lynden, graduated from Lynden Christian High School and earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Dordt College. He managed a local construction company for five years and served in sales and marketing for three years at a local lumberyard.

Mouat transferred from the Edward Jones office in La Grande, Ore., to return to the area where he was raised as a youth. Mouat worked previously as a high school teacher, then joined the U.S. Navy after the 9-11 terrorism attacks and served as a naval intelligence officer for five years.

Both Hendricks and Mouat will be assisting clients formerly served by Brian Smith, who has accepted a promotion to an Edward Jones office in Crescent City, Calif., to be closer to family members.

Edward Jones assists clients with plans for investment, retirement and education accounts. Its wide range of financial products includes stocks, bonds, mutual funds, annuities, certificates of deposit, life insurance and long-term-care insurance.


Evergreen Team Concepts appoints Weaver, Beaulaurier to management

Evergreen Team Concepts, specializing in training, consulting and staff development for organizations of all types, has appointed Paula Weaver, Ph.D., and Joe Beaulaurier to management positions at the Bellingham-based company.

Weaver has been named chief learning officer and is responsible for the development and presentation of the company’s proprietary programs. Weaver has implemented training and certification programs in high-tech, international and academic sectors. During her faculty tenure at The University of Texas at Arlington, she was a co-founder of The North Hills School, which was honored as the 12th-best high school in the country.

Beaulaurier has been named chief marketing officer and will expand training programs and resources into new and existing marketplaces, both locally and worldwide. Beaulaurier has more than 20 years of experience in financial services, mainstream media publishing, technology and Internet-based companies.

Weaver and Beaulaurier also are assisting clients through the Evergreen Team Concepts’ 2010 Service Initiative, which is designed to raise the skill levels of owners, leaders and all employees as businesses prepare for opportunities that arise around the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, B.C.


Mother Baby Center announces 2008-2009
board of directors

Mother Baby Center has announced Joseph Correa, Ph.D. and retired professor, as president for the 2008-2009 board of directors. Tracy Pippard of MSW has been named vice president, Jeff Keown of Ameriprise Financial Services is treasurer and Maryann Angus, Realtor, has been named secretary.

John Raasch, Annette Kraft and Elizabeth Page are returning members of the 2008-2009 board of directors.

Correa is new to the board, and all others are returning board members. Correa retired from the Uneversity of Pittsburgh as professor and dean of the graduate school and moved to Bellingham in February of 2007. He served as executive director of continuing education and study abroad programs in the ’70s at Western Washington University and specializes in turnaround strategies of businesses and nonprofit organizations.

Correa has also worked at the University of Washington, University of Puget Sound, Seattle University and institutions outside the State; has served in the Diplomatic Corps for several years at the United Nations; and served as assistant general manager of a manufacturing plant in the aerospace industry.

Recently, Correa has spent most of his time assisting companies establish or improve international trade in foreign markets. He travels considerably and often leads groups abroad on business trips.

He has served more than five years on the governing board of the Horticultural Society of Western Pennsylvania that established the new 300-acre-botanical garden in Pittsburgh and served as president of the Sweetwater Center for the Arts in Sewickley outside Pittsburgh.


NorthStar Medical Specialists promotes new administrator

Alyson Carlyon has been promoted to Administrator of NorthStar Medical Specialists, a medium-sized medical practice focused on sleep medicine, bariatric medicine and pulmonary rehabilitation.

With her new position, Carlyon will oversee the practice’s day to day operations and management of personnel. Carlyon has served in several roles during her three-year tenure with NorthStar and her strengths are in streamlining processes and managing employee and patient concerns.


Sustainable Connections announces new members

Sustainable Connections has recently welcomed new members Michele Sanger of Living Earth Herbs, Linda Gilese of Life Inspired, Duane and Mancy McNett of the McNett Corporation, Brent Biermann of Northwest MetalWorks, Drew Schmidt of San Juan Cruises, Rick Gates of True Stone Enterprises, Inc. and Jeff Braimes, independent realtor with Coldwell Banker.

Sustainable Connections is an innovative non profit business membership organization of more than 650 local business owners and community leaders. Members represent every sector of the economy and share in common a commitment to transforming and modeling an economy built on sustainable business practices.


Chrysalis Inn and Spa promotes three spa professionals

In coordination with the recent remodel of the Spa at the Chrysalis Inn in Fairhaven, three spa professionals have been promoted to lead positions.

Bellingham native Amber Maurer, a graduate of Ashmead College as well as a former teacher in spa and body work, has been named lead licensed massage practitioner. Maurer has extensive training in pre-and post-natal treatments, hot stone, deep tissue and spa body treatments.

She previously worked in spas in Seattle and Oahu, Hawaii, and joined the Chrysalis Spa in 2008. She was voted best therapeutic masseuse in Seattle magazine in the February 2007 issue.

Debbie Lease has been named lead aesthetician & makeup artist. Lease joined the Chrysalis after 18 years in the cosmetic industry in the Seattle and Portland areas as an educator and trainer, account coordinator and makeup artist. After she had an experience at the Chrysalis Spa, it solidified her desire to continue her education and she decided to pursue her aesthetics license.

Carmel Hudson has been named lead nail technician. Hudson learned salon and spa services at The Northwest Hair Academy and apprenticed at an Aveda Concepts Salon and Spa in Seattle, before going to work at The Chrysalis Spa at The Majestic Inn in Anacortes.


Swan named vice president for WWU relations

Steve Swan has been named the vice president for university relations at Western Washington University, President Bruce Shepard announced.

Swan, assistant chancellor for university advancement at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, will start at Western on Jan. 5. He succeeds Robert Frazier, who resigned last summer, and will have responsibility for the University’s overall external relations, marketing and communications.

The position title has also been changed from vice president of external affairs to university relations, with expanded responsibilities that include presidential initiatives such as the waterfront development project and enhancement of the transparency and effectiveness of decision-making.

Swan is in the fifth year of his second tenure of leading the advancement division at UW-Green Bay. He supervises the alumni, development, government relations and marketing and communications offices and is the leader of the University’s $25 million capital campaign, which is now in its final stages.


Gene Bell & Associates adds two new professionals
to staff

Gene Bell & Associates is excited to announce the addition of Scott Blanchard and Debbie Missiaen to it’s team.

Scott Blanchard is a registered representative through H.D. Vest Investment Services. He is insurance licensed in the state of Washington and is currently working toward earning his credentials as an income tax preparer.

Debbie Missiaen is also a Registered Representative through H.D. Vest Investment Services, and is currently working towards her Washington state insurance license and tax preparer credentials.

Both Blanchard and Missiaen will assist in tax and financial service projects.


Local author announces release of e-Book

David A. Czuba has announced the release of his e-Book, entitled “Distance Learning for Adult Students,” which was Oct. 30 on Amazon’s Kindle and as an Adobe PDF document through the author’s Web page.

Distance Learning, or online education, allows busy professionals, rural residents, military families and others to acquire an education unrestricted by school schedule and location by using computer technologies.

Czuba is an information technology professional with more than 25 years of experience. He earned his undergraduate degree through the State University of New York at Empire State College, Center for Distance Learning, located in Saratoga Springs, NY. He is currently studying toward an online MBA in Sustainable Business through Green Mountain College in Poultney, Vt., and resides in Bellingham.




Three local remodeling companies receive
excellence awards

The Master Remodelers Council of Whatcom County has awarded top remodelers DreamMaker Bath & Kitchen, TPS Services Inc., and HB Hansen Construction Inc. with Remodeling Excellence awards.

The awards recognize remodelers that follow good business practice and excel in their fields. DreamMaker Bath & Kitchen won three awards in the categories of Residential Bath Remodel $25,000-$75,000, Residential Kitchen Remodel under $30,000 and Residential Kitchen remodel $30,000-$60,000.

TPS Services received the award for best Residential Whole House Remodel over $150,000 and HB Hansen Construction was awarded best Residential Whole House Remodel over $500,000.

For more information on entering a project for next year, contact Diana Bailey at


Chamber announces green, nonprofit award winners

The Bellingham/Whatcom Chamber of Commerce & Industry has selected their winners of the Non-Profit and Green Business of the Year awards.

The 2008 Green Business of the Year, sponsored by Sanitary Services Company, is Woods Coffee, whose mission statement is “Serve others, make a difference and eliminate waste.” Woods Coffee started in 2002 with one location on Badger Road. They currently have seven locations throughout the region and follow LEED guidelines in all of their construction projects and use products that are sustainable.

The 2008 Non-Profit of the Year, sponsored by Wal-Mart, is the Opportunity Council, a community action agency that has been serving Whatcom County for more than 40 years. Services range from grass roots or locally supported programs such as Maple Alley Inn to federally funded contracts such as Head Start or Energy Assistance.

The Opportunity Council provides basic human services that range from short-term emergency assistance for families to long-term services such as 2-year transitional housing for victims of domestic violence.

These winners, along with the Large and Small Businesses of the Year, and the and Man and Woman of the Year awards will be announced at the Annual Awards Banquet on Dec. 8 at Lakeway Inn and Conference Center. For ticket information, contact the Chamber at 734-1330.


Matt McBeath wins WCAR Honor

Matt McBeath, of RE/MAX Whatcom County, Inc., has received the Realtor of the 3rd Quarter award from his real estate peers Oct. 1 at the Whatcom County Association of Realtors awards breakfast.

McBeath is a fourth generation in Whatcom County and began his real estate career in 2003. He is currently serving as a local director, chairs the 100 Year Anniversary committee, worked on the revision of by-laws during 2007 and works full time as a real estate agent for RE/MAX Whatcom County, Inc.


Audio Video Excellence celebrates 25th year in business

Audio Video Excellence of Bellingham will be celebrating its 25th year in business this year.

Founded by Clark Cyr and Darrel Mendelsohn as Satellite Entertainment, Inc. with roots in the satellite industry, the company has evolved into a nationally recognized audio video retailer/installer.

Audio Video Excellence serves Whatcom, Skagit, San Juan and Island counties as well as traveling nationwide at the customer’s request. Visit their website at


TPS Services wins Whatcom County BIA
remodeling award

TPS Services Inc. has been awarded its second BIA Remodelers in Excellence award, this year the “Residential Whole House Remodel $150,000-$500,000” category.

The remodeled home was transformed from a once small, foreclosed, drug dealers’ house that was the scourge of a great neighborhood into one of the nicest, virtually new homes in the Alabama Hills neighborhood. Amenities of the home include a Four Seasons Sunroom/family room; a stone and vertical grain, fir wood-burning fireplace with disappearing plasma TV above the mantel; high quality Canyon Creek cabinets; granite countertops; cherry and tile floors; sound system; steam shower and large jetted tubs; a composite deck; and accessory dwelling unit.

TPS Services, is locally owned and operated by Dan Moore and specializes in meeting its clients’ needs through home renovation, remodeling, and installation of sunrooms.


Washingtonians recognized for their contributions

At their annual meeting in Victoria, British Columbia, on Sept. 18, the Pacific States/British Columbia Oil Spill Task Force gave its 2008 Legacy Awards to five individuals, including David Sawicki of BP Cherry Point Refinery and Harriet Spanel, retiring Washington state senator.

Sawicki and Spanel have been awarded for their accomplishments and leadership in oil spill prevention, preparedness, and response activities resulting in enhanced environmental protection.

For more information about the Washington Legacy award winners, contact Curt Hart, media relations, Washington Department of Ecology; 407-6990.

Industrial Credit Union’s marketing coordinator awarded

Matt Vance, marketing coordinator for Industrial Credit Union, has recently received two awards from the Washington Credit Union League.

Vance was honored with first-place Spectrum Marketing awards in the categories of annual reports with ICU’s 2007 annual report and coordinated campaigns with Saturdays with Santa. Vance, a Western Washington University graduate, credited Credo Graphics of Mount Vernon for its significant contributions in both entries.

Entries from credit unions throughout the state were judged on design, content and promotion results. The credit union competed with other credit unions in the class of $50 million to $150 million in assets.


Local author wins spectrum book award

Bellingham resident Ginn Hale has won the 2008 National Spectrum Book award for best LGBT science fiction novel with her book, “Wicked Gentlemen.”

The nationally acclaimed award was presented at an awards ceremony in Bethesda, Md. on Oct. 12.

The Gaylactic Spectrum award honors outstanding works of science fiction, fantasy and horror which include significant positive depictions of gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgendered characters, themes, or issues. “Wicked Gentlemen,” published by the Bellingham-based independent press Blind Eye Books, was also a Lambda Literary award finalist for 2008.

Hale is also the author of the novella “Feral Machines,” published in the science fiction/fantasy anthology “Tangle,” also through Blind Eye Books, and a novella in the collection “Hell Cop,” available through e-book romance publisher Loose Id.

For more information, visit the Spectrum Award Web site at or the Blind Eye Books Web site at

For more information about Ginn Hale, visit her Web site at


DreamMaker Bath & Kitchen of Bellingham wins remodeling awards

DreamMaker Bath & Kitchen of Bellingham, part of the national DreamMaker Bath & Kitchen franchise network, has received three 2008 Excellence in Remodeling awards.

Sponsored by the Building Industry Association of Whatcom County, the Excellence in Remodeling awards are given annually to remodelers who demonstrate a superior level of project design and execution.

DreamMaker Bath & Kitchen won first place in Kitchen Remodel Under $30,000, Kitchen Remodel Over $65,000 and Bathroom Remodel Over $65,000. Entries were judged based on the use of appropriate building materials, quality of workmanship, special or unique design solutions and aesthetic consideration.

DreamMaker Bath & Kitchen of Bellingham is located at 3311 Northwest Ave. in Bellingham and was also a 2008 finalist for Small Business of the Year sponsored by the Bellingham/Whatcom Chamber of Commerce.


Whatcom Women in Business name 2008 Professional Woman of the Year

At their 26th annual banquet and auction Oct. 21, Whatcom Women in Business awarded Lynne Henifin the title of Whatcom County Professional Woman of the Year.

Henifin is manager and co-owner of NW Safety Signs, Henifin Construction, Complete Trade Services and two real estate development LLCs. She manages finances and oversees operations for Safety Signs, security, taxes and rental properties and is also involved in a variety of volunteer projects in the community.

Her nomination came from a field of six finalists.

Becky Rainey, co-owner of Print and Copy Shop and a longtime member of Whatcom Women in Business, was awarded the Member of the Year award for her service to the group in a variety of roles.

The sold-out event held at the Bellingham Country Club raised more than $l5,000, which is used to provide scholarships for local women pursuing higher education.

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