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Posted on Thu, Jan 19, 2012 : 5:15 a.m.

People & achievements in the greater Ann Arbor area, including American Aqua Inc. and Uproar Communications

By Staff


Darwin Watts

From new hires and promotions to industry awards, read on to learn about achievements by businesses and individuals in the greater Ann Arbor area:

Darwin Watts, head of Saline-based American Aqua Inc., was recently appointed president of the Water Quality Association. WQA is a not-for-profit international trade association that represents more than 2,500 members in the residential, commercial and industrial water treatment industry worldwide. As WQA president, Watts now leads the organization as it provides public information about water treatment issues while educating, training and certifying water treatment professionals.

• Ann Arbor-based marketing firm Uproar Communications designed and project-managed the DMC Surgery Hospital website that recently won the platinum eHealthcare Leadership award (the highest honor), in the Best Web 2.0 category. The award was announced in November 2011. The eHealthcare Leadership Awards program was developed and presented by eHealthcare Strategy & Trends, published by Health Care Communications.

Hyundai, working with regional economic development nonprofit Ann Arbor SPARK, secured more than $2.5 million in new business development incentives from the State of Michigan and Superior Township. Hyundai will use the funding to expand an environmental chamber for extreme temperature testing at its technical center just outside of Ann Arbor. Hyundai is investing over $15 million in the expansion project, which it anticipates will create 50 new high tech automotive research and development jobs over the next three years.

• Ann Arbor-based Con-way Freight, a less-than-truckload carrier and subsidiary of Con-way Inc. was named Walmart's 2011 National LTL Carrier of the Year. Walmart presented the award to Con-way Freight in December at its carrier conference at the company's Home Office in Bentonville, Ark. following an annual performance evaluation of its trucking and logistics service providers. It's the third time in five years Con-way Freight has been recognized as Walmart's top-performing national LTL carrier. The company also won the award in 2005, 2007 and 2008.

• SmithGroupJJR, a Detroit-based architecture, engineering and planning firms, has promoted David Frassrand to principal. Frassrand is a network analyst in the company's Information Technologies department. He is a resident of Ann Arbor.

• Modern Healthcare Magazine has awarded the SRSLY Coalition and Chelsea Community Hospital the Spirit of Excellence Award for Community - Honorable Mention for their accomplishments in supporting the community of Chelsea. As winners of the Spirit of Excellence Award for Community - Honorable Mention, the hospital and SRSLY were featured in the Dec. 12, 2011 issue of Modern Healthcare. In addition to being featured in the magazine, SRSLY will receive a $1,500 cash prize.

• Dentists Ralph G. Silvey, Kevin M. Sloan and Kevin T. Cook, have merged their dental practices and now are doing business as Ann Arbor Dental Care PLLC. Dr. Silvey has been providing general dentistry in Ann Arbor for more than 40 years, and Dr. Sloan has been providing general dentistry in Ann Arbor for over 26 years. Dr. Cook is currently an adjunct clinical assistant professor at the University of Michigan School of Dentistry. The practice has two Ann Arbor locations: 1717 Pauline Blvd. and 1821 W. Stadium Blvd.

• The Veterans Affairs Ann Arbor Healthcare System has chosen the University of Michigan-Flint Physical Therapy Department for a program aimed at developing advanced physical therapy practitioners who care for the whole patient and are prepared for board certification in cardiovascular and pulmonary physical therapy by the American Board of Physical Therapy Specialties. UM-Flint is the first university in the country to work with the VA on the Cardiopulmonary PT Residency. Only six universities were selected this year to provide special training. • The Ann Arbor Area Board of Realtors installed its 2012 board of directors Jan. 12, 2011. Linda Lombardini of Trillium Real Estate, a resident of Ann Arbor, is the 2012 AAABoR board president. Jason Boggs of The Charles Reinhart Co., a resident of Ann Arbor, is the president-elect for 2012. Marian Gregor of Keller Williams, a resident of Ann Arbor, is the 2012 treasurer. Vance Shutes of Real Estate One, a resident of Saline, is the 2012 treasurer-elect.

• Attorney Joseph W. Iskra, a resident of the greater Ann Arbor area, joined law firm Butzel Long as an associate based in the firm’s Bloomfield Hills office. Iskra concentrates his practice in the area of intellectual property law, with a specific emphasis upon the preparation and prosecution of both domestic and foreign patent applications before the United States Patent and Trademark Office.

Dan Milstein's new book, "The ABC of Sales," was among the winning entries honored at the 2011 New England Book Festival. An honorable mention recipient, Milstein was recognized at a ceremony on Jan. 14 in Boston. Milstein is CEO of Ann Arbor-based Gold Star Mortgage Financial Group.

• The 16th annual coat drive sponsored by Ann Arbor real estate company Charles Reinhart Co., Realtors collected a record number of coasts this year. The drive ran through the end of December, with Reinhart employees collected new and gently used winter coats at all of the Reinhart sales offices as well as during Sunday open houses. With the help of area dry cleaners, Reinhart was able to donate a record-breaking 1,552 winter coats to more than 20 local agencies. Capitol Cleaners, Chelsea Cleaners, Forbes Cleaners and Gold Bond Cleaners donated their services to professionally clean the coats before they were distributed to local agencies. The Charles Reinhart Co. has collected more than 15,500 coats throughout the 16 year-history of the coat drive.

Learning Express Toys will donate 20 percent of all sales to Girl Scouts Heart of Michigan to provide financial assistance for girls, starting Thursday, Jan. 19 and continuing through Sunday, Jan. 22. Shoppers should bring in the Learning Express voucher available at to credit 20 percent of each purchase to GSHOM. The store is located at 2465 W. Stadium Blvd., Ann Arbor, in the Westgate Shopping Center.

• The Huron Valley Chapter of the American Institute of Architects recently announced the names of its board of directors for 2012. Andrew G. Hauptman of Ann Arbor is the president; Daniel E. Whisler of Ann Arbor is the vice president/president elect 2013; Michael P. McCulloch of Ann Arbor is the secretary; and Wayne E. Chubb of South Lyon is the treasurer. The Huron Valley Chapter of the American Institute of Architects includes architects from Washtenaw, Jackson, Livingston, Lenawee and Monroe counties.

Javier Ortiz has joined Ann Arbor-based Architectural Resource as a project designer.

• Prudential Snyder & Co. Realtors, based in Ann Arbor, recently added two new Realtors: Nancy Parsons and Suzanne Warling.

Cleary University's online bachelor’s degree as well as its online MBA program were named honor roll programs in the first-ever edition of Top Online Education Program rankings by U.S. News & World Report. Cleary’s online bachelor’s degree earned the #16 spot out of 172 schools in the Student Engagement and Assessment category and the #30 spot out of 179 schools in the Student Services and Technology category. The university’s MBA program ranked #62 out of 161 schools in the Student Services and Technology category at the graduate level and #121 in Student Engagement and Assessment category out of 156 universities and colleges nationwide. Cleary is a business university with campuses in Ann Arbor and Howell.

Tiffany Ford has joined the University of Michigan Credit Union as president and chief executive officer. UMCU serves the employees and students of the University of Michigan, University of Michigan Health System, Washtenaw Community College and other area select employer groups.

• The Bonnie J. Addario Lung Cancer Foundation announced Jan. 17 that it has awarded more than $1 million in grants for lung cancer research in 2012. Among those receiving award money was Guoan Chen, assistant research professor in Thoracic Oncology at University of Michigan in Ann Arbor for work that could lead to earlier detection of lung cancer.

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