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• The Utah Valley Chamber has hired Andy Pierucci as new director of public policy and business development. Pierucci has spent the past four years working for the Utah Department of Agriculture and Food in several different policy and market-enhancement roles. Most recently, he was the director of the Marketing, Communications and Economic Development Division, where he oversaw all department communications, the Utah’s Own program, and the international trade program. Pierucci also has experience in political campaigns and the policy process. He was campaign manager for U.S. Rep. Rob Bishop for three years and has worked on campaigns at every level of government. Pierucci’s education includes an undergraduate degree from Utah State University in political science and a Master's in Public Administration at the University of Utah with an emphasis in international management.
• Zions Bank has named Neelam Chand as diversity and inclusion officer. She will be responsible for developing holistic diversity, equity and inclusion strategies and promoting cultural awareness throughout the company. Chand will provide workshops and trainings that enable best practices on issues of implicit bias, discrimination, workplace barriers and inclusive environments. Chand has a decade of experience formulating strategic plans, implementing inclusive messaging campaigns, facilitating critical dialogue on issues of equity, and leading training and workshops on best practices. Prior to joining Zions Bank, she was director of marketing and communications for the University of Utah’s Office for Equity and Diversity. From 2009-2013, Chand was executive director of Ten Thousand Villages, a nonprofit fair-trade retailer. She holds a bachelor’s degree in public relations and marketing from the University of Utah.
• Pat Holmes has retired from Visit Salt Lake (VSL) after 32 years. Holes, vice president of partner development, worked in hotel sales in Kansas City, Missouri, and Tulsa, Oklahoma, before coming to Utah. At VSL, she held five positions: convention services manager, director of conventions, director of marketing, vice president of marketing and vice president of partner development. While also directing the membership department and the VSL advertising program, she served as 10-year director of the Utah Arts & Cultural Coalition, a nonprofit focused on promoting arts and culture that operates NowPlayingUtah.com. She recently was awarded the Dianne Nelson Binger Sales Leadership Award, presented to Visit Salt Lake’s top salesperson.
• Nu Skin Enterprises Inc., Provo, has added Laura Nathanson to its board of directors. Nathanson is Disney Advertising Sales’ executive vice president of revenue and operations. Her career spans three decades, including 21 years at The Walt Disney Co. Prior to her current position, she served as executive vice president of sales and marketing for ABC Family, now Freeform. She has held sales and advertising positions with Fox Broadcasting and media agencies. Former board members Nevin Andersen and Neil Offen retired from the board and did not stand for re-election at the company’s annual meeting.
• Utah is ranked No. 49 among states in a new study about women’s rights, undertaken by Security.org. The study used the most recent data from the U.S. Census Bureau across four key categories: economic freedom, education, health and reproductive freedom, and political participation. The state rankings and scores were determined by calculating a total of 12 sets of metrics. Three sets of metrics were used in each of the four categories. The 10 states with the highest rankings for women’s rights are the District of Columbia, Maine, New Hampshire, Oregon, Iowa, Washington, New Mexico, Hawaii, Nevada and Colorado. The worst-ranked are Louisiana, Arkansas, Utah, Texas, Oklahoma, Mississippi, South Carolina, Indiana, Tennessee and Georgia. Utah had the lowest score in economic freedom, which used employment, earnings and business ownership as metrics. Utah was No. 26 in education score. Utah was No. 43 for health and reproductive freedom. Utah was No. 45 for political participation.
• Utah is ranked No. 15 among states in a new study about life expectancy, at 79.6 years. The study was released by SeniorLiving.org following analysis of reports from the Centers for Disease Control and the Journal of the American Medical Association released in 2018. Utah is ranked No. 33 for heart disease, last for cancer deaths, No. 6 for suicides, No. 22 for drug overdoses and No. 43 for liver disease.
• Bottega, an accredited school of software engineering in the United States, has committed to partner with Paul Ahlstrom, managing director of Lehi-based venture capital fund Alta Global Ventures, to train 5,000 Coding Foundations apprentices and 1,000 full-stack engineers in Jamaica out of Bottega’s Perpetual Endowment Fund, with a special regional endowment. Graduates of the engineering program commit a small percentage of their future technology income for three years to replenish the “pay it forward” education fund to make the opportunity available to additional Jamaican citizens.
• ProLung Inc. has announced it has started construction on a new office and laboratory location at “The Labs at Northgate” in Salt Lake City. The company said it is expected to provide significant cost reduction benefits and to be well-suited for its research and development efforts. Construction is expected to be completed in the second half of 2019. ProLung will be the anchor tenant at The Labs at Northgate, which is a new incubator for early-stage medtech companies. ProLung develops, tests and commercializes solutions which are designed to accelerate the time to diagnosis and expand the therapeutic window for lung cancer patients.
• Med One Group, a Sandy-based medical equipment leasing, rental and sales company, has appointed Sheri Thomas and Leslie Snavely to its board of directors. Thomas is the vice president of finance and accounting at Coherx Medical, a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson. Ms. Thomas began her career with Price Waterhouse in San Francisco, where she started in auditing and later transferred into consulting. She also has worked for WordPerfect, later acquired by Novell, and Phone Directories Co. She joined Coherex Medical in 2009 as controller and was promoted to vice president of finance and accounting in 2010. She also has served the past seven years as an adjunct professor at Brigham Young University, where she graduated with a master’s degree in accounting. She continues to teach a variety of School of Accountancy bachelor and master level classes. Snavely is the chief digital officer at CHG Healthcare. She previously was senior vice president of marketing and business development for CHG.
• Dwelo, a Draper-based smart-technology solutions company focused on the multifamily industry, has completed an extension to its Series A funding round led by existing investors Wasatch Venture Holdings, with participation from Perot Jain and several customers. Dwelo’s total investment in developing smart technology for apartments now exceeds $20 million. Dwelo said the new funding will allow it to expand its operational footprint, including expanding its engineering and product team and invest in sales and marketing. Founded in 2014, Dwelo has more than 200 apartment communities as customers, totaling nearly 50,000 apartment units.
• Skip, Salt Lake City, recently activated its 300th convenience store with its Frictionless Checkout service. This includes chain-wide rollouts at Enmarket, Cruizers, and High’s stores during the second quarter.
• Utah Food Bank has announced that the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has officially declared sponsorship of its Summer Food Service Program. The program will extend Utah Food Bank’s Kids Cafe program by providing free meals to children 18 years of age and under in both “Open Sites” and “Enrolled Programs.” Over 100,000 meals will be served at 50 sites through the program. Utah Food Bank will prepare meals for “Open Sites” and “Enrolled Programs” throughout the state. Details are at www.UtahFoodBank.org/SummerMeals.
• “5 for the Fight,” a global movement inviting everyone to give $5 for the fight against cancer, raised $1 million worldwide in May to fund cancer research. The organization was started by Qualtrics, a Salt Lake City-based experience management company, in 2016. It designed May as its first-ever “5 for the Fight” Month, a campaign inviting companies to raise funds for the effort. The campaign included a virtual 5K run with over 1,200 participants in more than 25 countries and 30 cities.
• Century Communities Inc. recently had the grand opening of its new Palisade model single-family home at the new Canyon Springs community at 905 S. 950 W., Springville. Canyon Springs offers a variety of two-story and rambler floor plans ranging from 1,610 to 2,320 square feet.
• Maxtec, a Salt Lake City-based company focused on oxygen analysis and delivery products, has been named a recipient of the 2019 President’s “E” Awards by the U.S. Department of Commerce for its export growth over the past year. Forty-eight other U.S. companies earned the honor, the highest recognition a U.S. entity can receive for making a significant contribution to the expansion of U.S. exports. Maxtec has been in business more than 15 years and has expanded its sales into India, China, South Korea and the UAE by leveraging opportunities made possible through World Trade Center Utah’s grants and foreign networks, as well as training and counsel directed toward strategic planning, increasing exports and overcoming international barriers.
• The University of Utah’s Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute has announced the recipients of the 2019 Informed Decision Makers of the Year awards, designed to recognize individuals and organizations that are helping the community prosper. Honorees are Beth Ehrhardt, Senior Charity Care, which improves the lives of Utah’s seniors in care facilities and senior apartments; Globus Relief, which aims to improve the delivery of healthcare worldwide; Giv Development, a creator of sustainable and innovative structures; Michelle Kaufusi, Provo mayor; and Spice Kitchen Incubator, which brings together refugees and other disadvantaged community members interested in starting a full- or part-time food business.
• The Utah Restaurant Association (URA) recently honored several companies and individuals at its 2019 Utah Restaurant Industry Awards Gala. Winners include URA Silver Platter Award, Lyft; Golden Spoon Award (Restaurateur of the Year), Ryan Lowder, Copper Onion, Copper Kitchen, Copper Commons and The Daily SLC; Chef of the Year, Jodie Rogers, Deer Valley Resorts; Lifetime Achievement Award, Missy Cannella, Cannella’s; Hall of Fame Award, Neil Wilkinson, Temple Square Hospitality; and Restaurant Bartender/Bar Program of the Year, Tupelo. “Heart of the Industry” Awards were presented for Front of House, Skyler Morris, SLC Eatery; Back of House, Jinan Abou-Ismail, Mazza & Rawtopia; MVP, Clint Hollingsworth, Copper Onion, Copper Kitchen, Copper Commons and The Daily SLC; and Vendor Appreciation Awards for Sysco Intermountain, Heartland Payment Systems, AJ Gallagherm Nicholas & Co., Model Linen, Bintz Restaurant Supply Co. and WCF Insurance. Workplace Safety Awards were presented to Talisker Club, Diamond; Deer Valley Resort, Platinum; Wingers, Gold; HB Boys, Silver; and Chartwell’s Dining Services, Bronze. Chairman’s Awards were presented to Terry Capener, past URA chairman and general manager and vice president of Lagoon; and Mark Eggett, president of Sysco Intermountain. Best Concept Restaurant Awards were presented to Tona Sushi, Five 5eeds, Table X and The Daily SLC. The National Restaurant Association’s Restaurant Neighbor Award was presented to Utah Del Taco Inc.
• Joann has opened a store at 2330 E. 3300 S., Salt Lake City. It offers craft supplies, fabrics, finished home goods, seasonal merchandise and more. The store is one of the first with innovative features seen in Joann’s Concept Store. Some new store elements include The Creators’ Studio, a large open community space where customers can take classes, host events and work on projects inspired by the latest trends; tools available for rental, including a high-end long-arm sewing machine, Cricut machines, and 3D cutting and engraving technology Glowforge, which cuts anything from wood to acrylic; a modernized cut bar experience, which allows customers to “check in” and continue shopping until a text message alerts them a team member is ready to cut their fabric; and concierge service called Sew & Go, which offers custom sewing services for anything from suit tailoring to home décor.
• The Governor’s Office of Economic Development (GOED) board, at its June meeting, endorsed a pair of Rural Fast Track capital investment grants, each for $50,000. United Minerals LLC, in Emery in Emery County, was endorsed for a grant to help it build a steel building to house settling tanks and holding tanks for mineral extraction and production. The $350,000 project is expected to result in two new full-time positions at the company, which currently has 14 employees. The company will qualify for a reimbursement of up to $3,000 if it retains the two new positions for at least 12 consecutive months. Double Bb Transportation, in Bluebell in Duchesne County, was endorsed for a grant to help it build a steel building. The company has six employees currently and the $108,000 project is expected to result in one new full-time position. The grants had previously been approved by the Governor’s Rural Partnership Board.
• Clearent, a St. Louis-based payments solutions provider that is the parent company of SPOT Business Systems, Draper, has acquired a minority stake in CleanCloud, a London-based global software-as-a-service (SaaS) business that services dry cleaners and laundromats in 70 countries. Financial terms were not disclosed. The transaction bolsters Clearent Software Holdings’ portfolio of independent software vendors in the dry-cleaning industry and helps further its goal to become the leading player in the U.S. laundry software market. CleanCloud will operate alongside SPOT Business Systems, benefiting each other by sharing best practices and lead generation, while continuing to operate as independent companies, Clearant said.