Archive | February, 2017

Rihm adds major acquisition to start its 85th year

Rihm adds major acquisition to start its 85th year

Posted on 06 February 2017 by Calvin

Rihm Family Companies also building two new facilities and puts University Ave. property up for sale

Rihm Family Companies, Inc. (RFC) – owner of one of the oldest Kenworth truck dealers in the world – kicked off its 85th anniversary by acquiring LTX, Inc. LTX owns Lawrence Leasing Inc., the operator of Lawrence NationaLease, a commercial truck leasing company with 15 locations in Minnesota, Wisconsin, and South Dakota.

Feat7_14Rihm1RFC, 2108 University Ave. W., also announced plans to build new facilities in South St. Paul and Coon Rapids, where the family-owned business will sell and service The World’s Best® Kenworth trucks.

Photo right: Kari Rihm stands in front of one of the trucks her company sells, as son JB and daughter Libby join her. (File photo)

“Like Rihm, Lawrence NationaLease has been family-owned and operated for multiple generations, and is a leader with a trusted legacy in the truck leasing and rental market,” said Steve Lawrence, former CEO of Lawrence NationaLease. “Our employees and assets are in extremely capable hands under the leadership of Kari Rihm and her family. This acquisition is a win-win for both of our companies.”

Lawrence NationaLease is a 15-location truck leasing company headquartered in Red Wing. Its 110 employees and management team will all remain employed under RFC’s ownership. Steve Lawrence will serve RFC as a consultant. Other Minnesota locations include Owatonna, Rochester (two locations), Sauk Centre, Winona, Northfield, and Cloquet; Wisconsin locations include Barron, Durand, Eau Claire/Chippewa Falls, LaCrosse, and Madison; and South Dakota locations include Volga/Brookings and Sioux Falls. For more information, visit lawrencenl.com.

RFC’s new facility in South St. Paul at Concord Blvd.. and Armour St. totals 68,000-square-feet and will serve as RFC’s new headquarters and offer sales, parts, and service. A new location in Coon Rapids near Highways 610 and 47 totaling 75,000-square-feet will serve as a body shop, in addition to offering sales, parts, and service.

Construction of both facilities will run on concurrent schedules, with groundbreakings planned for spring 2017 and grand openings in late 2017.

RFC is currently in the process of selling its Saint Paul facility on University Ave. There will be no changes to the company’s other facilities in Minnesota (Albert Lea, Sauk Centre, Lake Elmo, and Bemidji) or its Superior, Wisconsin, facility.

For more information on Rihm Family Companies, visit rihmkenworth.com.

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Thao honored for keeping kids from smoking

Posted on 06 February 2017 by Calvin

Ward 1 Council Member recognized for leadership at 2017 Tobacco Control Conference

ThaoMinnesotans for a Smoke-Free Generation (MSFG), a coalition of 50 organizations working to prevent youth smoking in our state, honored St. Paul Council Member Dai Thao (photo right) with the Inspiring Bold Action award at the 2017 Minnesota Tobacco Control Conference. The award recognizes bold efforts to protect future generations by restricting the sale of flavored tobacco products.

Alicia Leizinger, Policy and Program Specialist at Association of Nonsmokers-Minnesota, presented Thao with the award. “During his time in office, Council Member Thao has championed two major ordinances to protect the health of young people and promote health equity—an ordinance to set a minimum price for cigars and an ordinance to restrict the sale of flavored tobacco. He has shown great dedication to reducing the influence of the tobacco industry and creating a healthy community for all its residents.”

Award were former Shoreview City Council Member Wickstrom, Minneapolis Ward 2 City Council Member Cam Gordon, and Ward 5 Minneapolis City Council Member Blong Yang.

MSFG believes the tobacco industry uses menthol and candy-flavored tobacco products to attract the next generation of smokers. These products mask the harsh taste of tobacco and have packaging that is hard to distinguish from candy or gum. Young people also believe that flavored products are less dangerous or addictive, but they are just as deadly as other tobacco products. Because of these factors, an increasing number of young people are using menthol, candy and fruit-flavored products:
• 42% of students who smoke use flavored products.
• Menthol cigarette use by Minnesota high school smokers increased from 20% to 44% from 2000 to 2014.
• More than 35% of Minnesota students have tried flavored cigars.

Each year in Minnesota, tobacco use is responsible for more than 5,100 deaths and almost $3 billion in preventable health care costs—and 90 percent of adult smokers started before the age of 18.

Other recipients of a 2017 Minnesotans for a Smoke-Free Generation is a coalition of Minnesota organizations that share a common goal of saving Minnesota youth from a lifetime of addiction to tobacco. In addition to limiting access to candy-, fruit- and menthol-flavored tobacco, the coalition supports raising the tobacco sale age to 21, keeping tobacco prices high and funding future tobacco control programs. Find out more at www.smokefreegenmn.org.

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Hamline president named to Wilder Foundation Board

Hamline president named to Wilder Foundation Board

Posted on 06 February 2017 by Calvin

Dr Fayneese Miller sliderDr. Fayneese Miller (photo right), President of Hamline University (HU), has joined the Amherst H. Wilder Foundation’s Board of Directors. Dr. Miller joins 11 other Board members comprising the governing body of the Wilder Foundation.

Miller joined HU July 1, 2015, becoming Hamline’s 20th president. She is the first African-American president in the history of HU and the university’s second female president. She has 30 years of academic and higher education experience. Miller was the first coordinator of education studies and the founding chair of ethnic studies at Brown University, where she served on the faculty for 20 years. More recently she served as the dean of the College of Education and Social Services at the University of Vermont for nearly ten years.

Miller is a social psychologist who specializes in the psychosocial development of adolescents, with a focus on socio-political and identity development. She has authored or co-authored numerous books and an extensive number of journal articles, research reports, and conference presentations. She has been an invited lecturer at institutions throughout the U.S. and in Saudi Arabia, Thailand, China, Australia, and the United Kingdom.

As HU president, she serves on the boards of the Minnesota Private College Council, the New American Colleges and Universities consortium, and the Associated Colleges of the Twin Cities. Since coming to Hamline, she has been elected to the national board of the National Association of Schools and Colleges of the United Methodist Church (NASCUMC), and the NCAA Division III Presidents Council. In the Twin Cities, she serves on the board of Twin Cities Public Television.Minnesota Governor Dayton appointed her both to the Minnesota Governor’s Residence Council and to the Young Women’s Initiative of Minnesota, a public-private partnership with the Women’s Foundation of Minnesota to improve the lives of young women.

“We are excited to have Dr. Miller join our Board of Directors,“ says Alex Cirillo, Wilder Foundation Board Chair. “Her extensive experience in education and youth and her broad perspective will undergird our work with children, youth, and families. We are extremely pleased to have this tie with Hamline University, another longtime Saint Paul institution. Dr. Miller’s commitment to community will help guide Wilder’s mission and increase its impact today and into the future.”

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Hamline Elementary library art show

Hamline Elementary News

Posted on 06 February 2017 by Calvin

Hamline Elementary library art showStudent art displayed in community settings
If you’ve noticed more art in the Midway recently, it might be because the talented young artists at Hamline Elementary (photo right) have a champion in visual art teacher Katie Laubenstein. In just her second year at Hamline, she is building a meaningful, high-quality art program for students in kindergarten through fifth grade. Her enthusiasm for art is contagious, and her ability to teach and inspire students creates opportunities for artistic success and joyful learning.

Hamline Elementary art showThanks to Laubenstein’s efforts, Hamline Elementary student artwork is going public. In January, students showcased their work at Anderson Center on the Hamline University campus (photo left), featuring art inspired by India including beautiful representations of mandalas, henna, dhurrie rugs, elephants, and banyan trees. And neighbors who have been to the Hamline Midway Library recently have been treated to a rotating art exhibit featuring the work of Hamline Elementary students. Keep checking back to see what’s new!

“I Heart Hamline”
All are welcome to stop by Hamline Elementary on Tue., Feb. 14, 9am-1pm, for our “I Heart Hamline” event. We’ll have coffee and cookies and another chance for prospective parents and neighbors to take a tour and chat with Hamline staff and families about why they chose Hamline Elementary and why they stay. Call the school at 651-293-8715 for more information about this, or other programs, or to schedule a tour.

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CRWD Watershed Stewardship Awards note area leaders

Posted on 06 February 2017 by Calvin

Locals are the main recipients of Capitol Region Watershed District’s (CRWD) Watershed Stewardship Awards

CRWD hosted its annual Watershed Stewardship Awards in December 2016. The awards honor individuals or organizations that exemplify watershed stewardship through activities, projects or policies, which demonstrate a commitment to protect, manage and improve water resources of the District. Each year, this event brings CRWD staff, board and Citizen Advisory Committee members together with our partners to reflect, share and celebrate our accomplishments.

Watershed District Citizen of the Year Awards
Working with neighbors, Janna Caywood helped establish the Como Active Citizen Network (CACN) in Saint Paul. CACN organizes annual leaf clean-ups to prevent phosphorous from getting into Como Lake and causing algae blooms. In 2016, 223 households participated in clean-ups, removing more than 11 pounds of phosphorous. Janna’s leadership has inspired many others to get involved in watershed protection efforts.

Patricia Ohmans is a resident of Saint Paul’s Frogtown neighborhood who has been instrumental in many gardening and water protection efforts. She was a co-founder of Frogtown Farm and Park, which converted office space to green space including a large community garden. Patricia also helped establish FrogLab, an education program at Hmongtown Marketplace, focused on Bringing the Frogs Back to Frogtown. Patricia is a visionary and does an excellent job of creating opportunities for community-led environmental education and activism.

Watershed District Partner of the Year Award
The District 6 Planning Council represents residents of the North End community in Saint Paul. They have worked closely with CRWD and the City of Saint Paul to complete a natural resource inventory, establish plans for a community rain garden and advocate for the restoration of Willow Reserve. They also supported efforts to transform a brownfield site into an environmental treasure known as the Trout Brook Nature Sanctuary. District 6 is a valued and trusted partner in the North End.

Project of the Year Award
The owners of Bang Brewing, 2320 Capp Rd., have shown a commitment to sustainability in their choice of building materials, brewing techniques, recycling and composting practices, and rain gardens on site. They have created a little oasis that is both beautiful and functional. Bang Brewing is an excellent example of how to thoughtfully redevelop a site with sustainability in mind.

Young Watershed Stewards of the Year Award
Olive Murdoch Meyer and Bridget Moynihan served as student representatives and advisors for clean water projects at Central High School. They donated countless hours to rain garden maintenance, raised money to help cover project costs, and offered suggestions for how to best connect students with the project as part of their work with the Roots and Shoots club. CRWD hopes to use their work as a model for future partnerships with schools.

Lifetime Stewardship Award
David Arbeit has been an integral part of CRWD since the beginning. As a longtime member of the District 10 Environment Committee, David has a history of working for clean water in Como Lake. He was intimately involved in the creation of CRWD and has been a dedicated member of its Citizen Advisory Committee since the District was founded in 1998. The District values his thoughtful participation in and knowledge of CRWD programs and projects. We feel very fortunate to have him on our team.

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