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Posted on Thu, Nov 24, 2011 : 5:15 a.m.

People & achievements in the greater Ann Arbor area, including of Homeowner Services of America and TLC Eyecare & Laser Centers

By Staff


David Rhoads

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

David Rhoads, owner of Homeowner Services of America and First Design Cabinetry in Saline, was recognized by the Michigan Association of Home Builders as the 2011 Remodeler of the Year. Rhoads received the honor for his commitment to the building and remodeling industry and a high level of civic involvement. He has been a member of the Builders and Remodelers Association of Greater Ann Arbor for more than 30 years, and, in that time, he served in various positions including president, director, Michigan Association of Home Builders director, National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) director and chair of the Washtenaw Remodelers Council, an affiliate of BRAG Ann Arbor. Locally he has been named Builder of the Year (2007) and has earned Life Director status on the BRAG Ann Arbor board of directors.

• Due to the expansion of three offices, TLC Eyecare & Laser Centers has added new staff at their corporate headquarters, located in Ann Arbor. The company added four staff members in the areas of patient and affiliate relations.

• Designer and web developer Nick Conflitti has join the creative team at re:group, an Ann Arbor-based marketing firm.

Nu2U Resale Store celebrated its grand opening in October with a Saline Area Chamber of Commerce ribbon-cutting ceremony. Nu2U is a resale store located in the Country Market shopping center in Saline. All the money brought in above operating costs for the nonprofit store goes to Washtenaw Christian Academy in Saline.

• Founders of a community-based micro-philanthropic organization called A2Awesome recently announced the organization’s launch in the Ann Arbor-Ypsilanti area. The group, composed of 12 individuals, is organizing under the banner of the Boston-based Awesome Foundation and will make one grant a month for the foreseeable future, with the first being awarded in early December. All grants will be in the amount of $1,000. Those with creative, inspired ideas are encouraged to apply for the grant online. The first grant deadline for participation is Nov. 30. Created in 2009 in Boston, the Awesome Foundation now has chapters in more than 20 cities. Projects funded have included efforts in a wide range of areas including technology, arts, social good and beyond. Anyone with inspiring ideas is encouraged to submit proposals at (Click on “Ann Arbor” in the drop-down menu.)

• Edward Surovell Realtors agent Michelle Henderson has received the 203k Specialist designation after completing the real estate industry’s most comprehensive training in the use of the U.S. Government’s FHA 203k Home Purchase and Renovation Loan program. With this designation, she becomes a member of REbuildUSA, a nationwide organization of real estate, lending and home improvement professionals.

• Leaders from the University of Michigan Medical School and MedImmune, the global biologics arm of AstraZeneca, have signed a new agreement to work together in a three-year strategic collaboration. UMMS and MedImmune scientists will cooperate on studies that aim to translate scientific discoveries from the laboratory into new candidates for treating cancer, heart disease, digestive disease, lung disease and diseases caused by inflammation. MedImmune is headquartered in Gaithersburg, Md.

• Ann Arbor-based pharmaceutical company Cerenis Therapeutics recently announced the appointment of Dr. John F. Paolini, as chief medical officer. Paolini will be responsible for the strategic planning and execution of the clinical trials for Cerenis’ portfolio of novel cardiovascular therapies and Cerenis’ lead product, CER-001, treatment being studied in Phase II clinical trials for patients with acute coronary syndrome.

• The Accelerate Michigan Innovation Competition awarded more than $1 million in cash and in-kind services Nov. 17 to the winners of North America's largest business plan competition. The competition's grand prize of $500,000 in cash was awarded to Ypsilanti-based DeNovo Sciences, and the grand prize of $25,000 for the student portion of the competition was awarded to University of Michigan's students for their company "are you a human." The three-day competition was held Tuesday, Nov. 15 until Thursday, Nov. 17 at the Eagle Crest Conference Center at Eastern Michigan University.

DTE Energy was recognized by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) for its leadership in promoting renewable energy through the company's GreenCurrents renewable energy program. DTE Energy was presented with the Green Power Leadership Award as "Utility Green Power Program of the Year" at the 2011 Renewable Energy Markets conference in San Francisco. GreenCurrents provides DTE Energy's 2.1 million electric customers the option of "greening up" their power with renewable energy created from wind, biomass and other environmentally friendly sources. To help promote its new renewable energy program, DTE Energy partnered with numerous community events, organizations and schools. Successful partnerships include The Ark, a landmark music venue, and the Michigan Theatre, both in Ann Arbor, where concert-goers are invited to sign up for GreenCurrents.

• Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan recently awarded $1 million in grants to 53 clinics caring for uninsured and homeless Michigan residents as part of its annual Strengthening the Safety Net" program. Among the recipients was the Shelter Association of Washtenaw County, based in Ann Arbor.

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