Business and professional briefs, Feb. 9, 2014

Business and professional briefs, Feb. 9, 2014

New jobs

Bauer establishes law firm. Attorney Wendy Shields Bauer has established the Law Office of Wendy Shields Bauer at 505 W. University Ave., Suite 201, C.

She concentrates her practice in real estate, estate planning, estate administration, corporate and business law.

Bauer was a founding partner of the law firm of Nally, Bauer, Feinen & Mann in 1996 and has practiced law in Champaign County since 1989.

Hortenstine joins Mattoon practice. Jason L. Hortenstine has joined the law firm of Heller, Holmes & Associates, Mattoon, as an associate.

His areas of practice include estates and estate planning, personal injury, wrongful death, real estate, business litigation and family law.

A native of Cooks Mills, Hortenstine graduated from Mattoon High School in 2006, received a bachelor's degree in finance from Eastern Illinois University and received a law degree from Southern Illinois University in May 2013, graduating magna cum laude.

While in law school, he was editor of the Southern Illinois University Law Journal, clerked at Heller, Holmes & Associates and was founder and operator of Hortenstine Wealth Management, a financial planning service.

Whitsitt & Associates adds Denby. Wade Denby has joined Whitsitt & Associates, Champaign, as a commercial real estate appraiser.

He is completing educational requirements through the Appraisal Institute and is an Illinois state-licensed associate real estate appraiser trainee.

Denby was previously a commercial loan officer in Champaign-Urbana and has been in the banking field for more than 25 years.

Listing partners join Dallas team. Angela Unzicker of White Heath and Stacy LaCour of Mahomet have joined the Ryan Dallas team of Keller Williams Realty as listing partners, working exclusively with sellers.

Unzicker has experience in both sales and business. Before getting a real estate license, she worked as a business development associate and sales representative for Northstar Lottery Group and was the establishing owner of Evolve Fitness Club in downtown Champaign.

LaCour was previously a sales representative at WCIA-TV, Champaign.

Mingee named Lakeview president. Sheila Mingee of Georgetown has been promoted to president of Lakeview College of Nursing, Danville.

She succeeds Dick Shockey, who has been the college's chief executive officer since 2005.

Mingee has worked at the college since 1989, having been administrative assistant to the dean and president, resource assistant, director of administrative services and facilities management and associate CEO.

She plans to focus her first-year efforts on student achievement, relationship building, organization and communication and professional development.

Cargo joins Frasca International. Shannon Cargo has joined Frasca International, Urbana, as staff accountant.

She will analyze financial information and prepare financial reports.

Cargo was previously employed by Vesuvius, Champaign, as a financial accountant.

Realty firm adds Henderson. Laura Henderson has joined Re/Max Realty Associates, Champaign, as a sales associate.

She has been a full-time real estate agent in the Champaign-Urbana area for 13 years, helping both buyers and sellers and dealing with new construction. She also has a working knowledge of sign language.

Henderson has lived in Champaign-Urbana since 1994 and was a teacher for 15 years.


Hernandez advances in meat cutting contest. Abelardo Hernandez, who hand-cuts steaks at Texas Roadhouse in Champaign, has advanced to the regional competitions of Texas Roadhouse's A1 National Meat Cutting Challenge.

He will compete Feb. 25 at The Ice Factory in Kissimmee, Fla., with the top 24 participants moving to the semifinals on Feb. 26. There, eight finalists will qualify for the finals April 27 at Amelia Island, Fla.

The winner of the national competition will receive a grand prize of $20,000 and will be crowned Meat Cutter of the Year.

Each participant receives 30 to 40 pounds of beef, consisting of two sirloins, one filet and one rib-eye, to cut. The winner is the cutter who yields the most steaks, with the highest quality cut in the least amount of time.

Clanin joins UBA board. Scott Clanin has joined the board of directors of the Urbana Business Association.

He is marketing manager for JSM Commercial and has served on the Champaign Center Partnership marketing committee and Visit Champaign County's Tourist Council.

Whitsitt receives designation. Mark Whitsitt has received the SRA designation from the Appraisal Institute, conferred for competence, experience and education in residential real estate appraisals.

Whitsitt is the residential supervisor at Whitsitt & Associates, Champaign, and works on a combination of residential and commercial appraisal assignments.

Thoma honored for 25 years. Arthur J. Thoma Jr. was recently honored by Coldwell Banker Commercial Devonshire Realty, Champaign, for 25 years of service.

Thoma received his Illinois real estate license in 1975, got his Certified Commercial Investment Member designation in 1981 and became a member of the Society of Industrial and Office Realtors in 1998.

Amjad receives Avvo award. Steven A. Amjad has received the Clients' Choice Award from the Avvo attorney rating service for the second year in a row.

He received an 8.6 ("excellent") rating out of a possible 10 and was a featured attorney in the personal injury practice area.

Amjad is an attorney with the Meyer Capel law firm, Champaign.

Agency recognized as 'Gem.' Clodfelder Insurance Agency of Mahomet has been selected by personal and commercial insurance provider IMT Group as one of its 2014 "Gem" agencies.

IMT Group recognized Clodfelder as one of the highest-performing IMT and Wadena Insurance agencies in its six-state territory, which includes Iowa, Illinois, Minnesota, Nebraska, South Dakota and Wisconsin.

Of approximately 860 IMT Group agencies, only 83 received Gem distinction. Criteria included outstanding performance in rank, growth, loss ratio and profitability.

Bill Clodfelder is owner of the agency.

Lake Land claims marketing awards. The Communications and Creative Services Department at Lake Land College, Mattoon, recently won District 3 Medallion Awards from the National Council for Marketing and Public Relations.

Jennifer Forneris received first place in news writing for a story featuring veteran supports and services at the college.

Forneris and Jenny Osborn took second place in the academic schedule category for the college's publication, Full Circle, which is distributed three times a year.

Megan Nelson received second place for her work creating a branding identity and marketing campaign for the college's Community and Professional Programs.

The District 3 competition includes entries from Illinois, Indiana, Wisconsin, Michigan, Ohio and the Canadian province of Ontario.

Other business news

Area banks reduce energy consumption. Bement Bancshares is competing in the 2013 Energy Star National Building Competition to reduce energy consumption, and results have been announced at the midway point.

Of 3,313 participants, the State Bank of Bement drive-thru location placed 105th, having reduced its energy consumption by 16.3 percent.

The bank's main bank location placed 988th, having decreased its consumption by 5.5 percent.

The bank's Ivesdale branch placed 1,409th, having decreased consumption by 2.4 percent.

The State Bank of Cerro Gordo was not far behind, placing 1,429th and having decreased consumption by 2.2 percent.

The "Battle of the Buildings" competition ends in April 2014. To learn more about the competition, visit

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