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Business Briefs

Farmers Union lauds Johannes

WILLMAR -- Paul Johannes, Farmers Union agent in Olivia and Willmar, was honored as the 2010 Agent of the Year by Farmers Union Agency Inc. in St. Paul.

Johannes was selected for this honor from 40 agents throughout Minnesota who represent Farmers Union Agency. This recognition is the result of outstanding agency performance and consistently high level of exceptional service which Johannes provides to his customers.

Johannes has represented Farmers Union Agency since 1992.

"Paul's commitment to his agency, community and the consistent focus on giving the best service to his policyholders is a great example to the rest of us at Farmers Union Insurance. This is an exceptional award for an exceptional individual," said Jim Frederickson, Farmers Union Agency president.

Farmers Union Agency is a full service insurance agency writing auto, home, farm, crop, commercial, agribusiness, life and health coverage in Minnesota.

Beccue opens new law office

WILLMAR -- Willmar attorney Boyd Beccue has opened a new office at 2015 First St. S. in Willmar. Beccue, who served as Kandiyohi County attorney from 1991 to 2011, will be engaged in the general practice of law with emphasis on family law, criminal law and governmental issues including land use, condemnation and ditch law.

A 1979 honors graduate of the University of Minnesota Law School, Beccue has practiced law in Willmar for 31 years. A former president of the Minnesota County Attorneys Association, Beccue brings to his new office wide ranging knowledge and experience in governmental regulation, criminal, civil commitment and child protection matters.

Beccue has been a frequent presenter in continuing legal education classes, most recently during the summer of 2010 when he presented a session on civil commitment issues in Willmar.

VanderBeek joins Hair & More

WILLMAR -- Carrie VanderBeek, a certified massage therapist, has joined Hair & More. She specializes in integrative massage, blending Swedish, deep tissue and neuromuscular massage techniques to provide relaxation and healing.

VanderBeek also provides prenatal, hydrostone and lymphatic drainage massages. A variety of morning, afternoon and evening appointments are available Monday through Saturday. For availability and to schedule an appointment, call 320-231-2082. Walk-ins are also welcome as availability permits.

VanderBeek is a native of Brooten and lives in Willmar. She earned her 700-hour certificate in massage therapy in June 2005 from the Colorado School of Healing Arts in Lakewood, Colo. In 2006, she added a certificate in lymphatic drainage to her repertoire. She is also trained in hydrostone massage and prenatal massage.

Silva's Auto Repair opens

WILLMAR -- Silva's Auto Repair has opened at 1605 Lakeland Dr. S.E. in Willmar.

Owner is Maria Silva. Ben Silva has 25 years of experience in auto repair.

For more information, call 320-235-0505.

Lavin opens retreat center

GRANITE FALLS -- Chiropractor Betsy Lavin has opened her new business called Life Purpose Retreat and Coaching Center, a Christian women's retreat center in Granite Falls. Dr. Lavin said the retreat center is a first-of-its-kind in the area and she hopes to attract women from around the state.

Lavin said she is creating a variety of retreats with the goal of bringing hope and renewal to women seeking more purpose out of life. She offers several types of retreats including spiritual and spa, life purpose, gratitude and life makeover. All retreats are designed to help women have a day of rest and renewal.

As a licensed chiropractor with expertise in wellness and natural health, Lavin gears her programs toward living a holistic approach to mind, body and spirit.

She will hold a grand opening open house from 10 a.m. to noon on March 19. She can be called at 507-476-0026 or 320-564-1870.

Going Places

- Roberto Valdez, program coordinator and community leader for the Willmar Area Multicultural Market, participated in the National Association for Latino Community Asset Builders fellowship program Feb. 23-25 in Kansas City, Mo. The program offers an opportunity for rising leaders to learn about the challenges and successes faced by experts and scholars in the field of community development and focused on the role of Latino leaders in the public, private and nonprofit sectors. As part of the program, Valdez is required to complete a comprehensive program or project analysis for Willmar and the local community, offering innovative methods to meet the increasing range of needs facing the community.

- Laura Lindeman, coordinator of the Kandiyohi County Drug-Free Communities Coalition, and coalition member Rick Loseth recently traveled to Washington, D.C., to attend the 21st annual national leadership forum of the Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America.

The event was attended by nearly 3,000 substance abuse prevention treatment specialists and advocates. Guest speakers included Gil Kerlikowske, director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy, and Dr. Howard Koh, assistant secretary of health for the U.S. Health and Human Services Department.

Lindeman and Loseth also had the opportunity to meet with the staff of Rep. Collin Peterson, D-Minn., to share some of the local prevention work and activities.

City of Willmar Building Permits

Feb. 21 to 28, 2011

Arlen Roesner, 915 Becker Ave. S.E., interior drain tile, $3,000.

Matt Oakland, 623 13th St. S.W., interior drain tile, new sump and basket, $4,704.

Dave Evenson, 1304 Seventh St. S.W., interior drain tile and sealed basket, $1,814.

Kelly Fernandez, 402 14th St. S.E., interior drain tile, sump pump and basket, $4,956.

Jerod Wendt, 1309 10th St. S.W., new sump pump and basket, $900.

All information is from the City of Willmar Building Inspection Report. The value of the project is rounded to the nearest dollar. Building removals have no dollar value.