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Business Briefs for March 12

Davis joins ACMC Family Medicine

WILLMAR — Affiliated Community Medical Centers in Willmar announces the addition of Dr. Ryan Davis, who will join the family medicine team this August in Willmar.

Davis received his bachelor’s degree from Bethel University in St. Paul. He then earned his medical degree from Des Moines University-Osteopathic Medical Center in Iowa. He is completing his family medicine residency with Franciscan Skemp Healthcare-Mayo Health System in La Crosse, Wis.

Davis, his wife, Andrea, and their two young sons will relocate to the Willmar area.

Jennie-O promotes Uecker, Venenga

WILLMAR — Jennie-O Turkey Store announces the promotion of Aubrie Uecker to associate food technologist in the research and development department at the corporate offices in Willmar.

Jennie-O also announced the promotion of Shelly Venenga to associate product manager at the Willmar corporate offices.

Uecker was hired in 2007 and most recently worked in live production as quality assurance and research coordinator assisting in salmonella sampling and farm audits.

In her new position, Uecker will be responsible for formulating new products, improving existing products, cost-saving initiatives and exploring new food safety processes.

Uecker graduated in 2011 from Kansas State University with a bachelor’s degree in food science.

Venenga began her career with Hormel Foods — Jennie-O Turkey Store’s parent company — in 1996 in various positions in production and quality control. She came in 1998 to Jennie-O Turkey Store where she worked in various quality control and production positions at the company’s Montevideo plant before being promoted to quality control manager at the Willmar Avenue Plant in 2000.

In 2003, she accepted a position as a food technologist/scientist and was promoted to senior food technologist/scientist in 2007. Most recently, she has worked in corporate quality assurance.

Venenga will be responsible for managing a variety of products within the retail business unit. She will lead projects for new product development and maintain current products as well as manage consumer promotions.

Dykema, McCain join local office of Ameriprise

WILLMAR — Luther Dykema and Amanda McCain have joined the practice of John D. Holthusen of Holthusen, Madden and Associates, a financial advisory practice of Ameriprise Financial Services Inc.

Dykema, an associate financial adviser, began his career in the financial services industry in 1989. He obtained his bachelor’s degree from Minnesota State University Mankato. He resides near Willmar with his wife.

McCain, an associate financial adviser, began her career in the financial advisory industry six years ago. She is a New London-Spicer High School graduate and received her bachelor’s degree in finance from St. Cloud State University. She resides near Spicer with her husband and children.

For more information, contact Dykema or McCain at 320-235-5600. Their office is located at 776 Business Highway 71, Willmar.

New ag specialist joins EDC

WILLMAR — Leroy Petersen has joined the Kandiyohi County and City of Willmar Economic Development Commission as the newly hired agriculture and renewable energy specialist.

He brings extensive practical experience enhanced by undergraduate degrees in general and international business management from Southwest Minnesota State University and an executive master of business administration degree from Carlson School of Management, University of Minnesota Twin Cities.

Specializing in collaborative business planning and development, his practical experience includes commercial, production and alternative agriculture ownership and operation; project management; business planning and implementation; and a host of other value-added interests.

Petersen held an agriculture expert appointment for the United States Department of Agriculture, Foreign Agricultural Service, in Helmand province, Afghanistan, where he collaborated with multiple military and civilian entities to develop and manage projects to build capacity in local government, agricultural extension and to renew key economic drivers for the Afghan people.

He most recently completed an assignment in Takhar, Afghanistan, as agriculture development manager and also provided ongoing consulting services for NGO Shelter for Life International.


Whitcomb Angus of Lake Lillian is a new member of the American Angus Association, reports Bryce Schumann, CEO of the national association headquartered in Saint Joseph, Mo.

The American Angus Association, with more than 25,000 active adult and junior members, is the largest beef breed association in the world. Its computerized records include detailed information on more than 17 million registered Angus.


Paul White, Atwater, a financial consultant with Thrivent Financial for Lutherans, has qualified for the Pinnacle Council conference by providing financial guidance and solutions to members of the organization in 2012. Of Thrivent Financial’s nearly 2,300 financial representatives, only 165 qualified for this honor. White has been with Thrivent Financial for 13 years. He has been recognized for his performance 13 times.

The Tribune publishes news about businesses in the region and their employees each Tuesday.

Topics such as the launch of a new business, a change in ownership or management, a new location or a significant expansion are welcome, as well as announcements about new employees or employees who have earned significant promotion. Photos may be submitted as well.

A person’s continuing education, advanced certification and significant awards also may be considered for publication.

Information and photos may be emailed to Forms are available by request at the above email, and questions also may be submitted there. Or call the newsroom at 320-235-1150.