Grand Rapids Business Journal

GRBJ 10-20-14

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October 20, 2014

Volume: 31
Edition: 42
Since 1983, Grand Rapids Business Journal has been West Michigan's primary and most trusted source of local business news. The weekly print edition of the Business Journal, a must-read for the area’s top decision-makers, is known as the business newspaper of metro Grand Rapids, Holland, Muskegon and all of West Michigan.

October 20, 2014

MCOY Awards names familiar winner

O-A-K’s win is first under its new president, Frank Stanek.

October 17, 2014
At an event that’s been referred to as the “Golden Globes for general contractors," Michigan’s longest-standing commercial contractor took home the big prize. Read More

Inside Track: Perseverance trumps upbringing for Blackford Capital director

Jeff Helminski experienced being poor as a youngster and decided that would not be his lot in life.

October 17, 2014
In high school, Jeff Helminski told his class he was going to be an entrepreneur like Donald Trump. Read More

Davenport launches online competency-based MBA degree

Program puts more emphasis on business experience than classroom time.

October 17, 2014
Business professionals interested in earning an MBA can now be graded based on their proficiency of material rather than time spent in a classroom. Read More

Second Grand Rapids BRT route is in motion

October 17, 2014
The Rapid is one step closer to bringing a second bus rapid transit line to Grand Rapids. Read More

GR Forward is now open for business

Temporary information center will solicit opinions on how region should grow.

October 17, 2014
Downtown Grand Rapids Inc. has opened its temporary GR Forward Open House center in downtown Grand Rapids, where the public can learn about plans for the future of downtown as well as the Grand River corridor and GR Public Schools Museum School and Innovation Central High. Read More

Online strategy is essential element of education

Colleges say student-faculty engagement and assessment tools contribute to success.

October 17, 2014
The online platform for education is a tool academic institutions can use to meet the needs and expectations of their students in an increasingly data-driven world, while providing an opportunity for nontraditional students or professionals to pursue a higher education. Read More

Brewers join push to save Great Lakes

Water conservation conference is coming to Grand Rapids this week.

October 17, 2014
Grand Rapids is a hub of water conservation efforts this year. Read More

Building company earns B-Corp designation

October 17, 2014
Long focused on the triple bottom line, Bazzani Building Co. recently decided to see if it was really walking the walk as a sustainably minded and socially responsible business. Read More

Muskegon Chamber aims to keep cash in community

October 17, 2014
(As seen on WZZM TV 13) Repurposing a local tradition, a lakeshore chamber of commerce is bringing its gift certificate program to an online platform to keep cash in the community. Read More

Life in the fast lane might be two-wheeled in the future

Grand Rapids is going all out to increase use of bicycles in place of cars.

October 17, 2014
The word is out from Grand Rapids City Hall to all motorists: As of Nov. 1, don’t even think of parking in any of the new bicycle-only lanes on the streets. Read More

Not everybody is gung-ho for bike-only lanes

October 17, 2014
First Ward City Commissioner Walt Gutowski Jr., who owns a business on Bridge Street NW in Grand Rapids, was asked what he thought of the city’s explosion of bike-only lanes, which tend to eliminate some curbside parking. Read More

West Michigan scores national sports competition

The State Games of America will come to Grand Rapids in 2017.

October 17, 2014
The Meijer State Games of Michigan received a shot in the arm last week. Read More

Fuel shortage addressed

October 17, 2014
Crystal Flash, the West Michigan-based heating and transportation fuel company that is one of the largest family-owned propane distributors in Michigan and 22nd in the nation, says it is ready for a repeat of the winter of 2014. Read More

Private aviation firm joins market

Specialty will be charters within 200 to 400 miles of West Michigan.

October 17, 2014
A new private aviation firm has joined the West Michigan market. Read More

New apps wow state officials

Winning team creates software that tracks snowplows and cleared roads.

LANSING — A team of software engineers from Grand Rapids won the state’s second web application design contest with an app to keep drivers up to the second on snow removal conditions. Read More

New uses sought for outdated newspaper buildings

Former Grand Rapids Press building will be used by Michigan State University.

LANSING — As some Michigan newspapers downsize to smaller offices, they are leaving behind massive buildings that are outdated but still critical to the communities they cover. Read More

Practice group focuses on Supreme Court cases

Warner attorney has experience working with the nation’s highest court.

October 17, 2014
With eight merit cases under his belt, attorney John Bursch said it made sense for him to start a practice group focusing on the U.S. Supreme Court upon his return to Warner Norcross at the end of last year. Read More

Cost of disease, suffering escalates with ignorance and fear

October 17, 2014
The Ebola crisis makes obvious the interconnectedness of the human race Read More

Investment in electronic transmission infrastructure powers growth

October 17, 2014
I noted with great interest that the leading mandate out of the 2014 West Michigan Policy Forum was a call to action on needed investment in the state’s infrastructure. Read More

Teacher pension plan is shortsighted

October 17, 2014
Editor: Sen. Mark Jansen is proposing a further way to degrade the ability of public school employees to make a secure life for themselves and their families. Read More

Family-owned businesses need family meetings

October 17, 2014
Research tells us there are three key factors for the perpetuation of a family-owned business: having a strategic plan for the business, using a board that includes outside directors, and holding family meetings. Read More

How’s your networking? Better if you follow the rules

October 17, 2014
I went to a networking meeting this month hosted by a formal networking organization called Business Network International. Read More

WMU’s aviation capital outlay receives endorsement

Labor council backs plan for $19M expansion using state appropriation.

October 17, 2014
A university nationally recognized for its aeronautics program is pursuing state funding for a $19 million expansion and renovation project for its aviation facility to accommodate projected industry growth for maintenance technicians. Read More

Northwood incorporates cohort approach in online MBA program

It’s the same process the university uses in its traditional advanced-degree classes.

October 17, 2014
A business school is adding a new MBA program to its repertoire with the launch of a fully integrated online curriculum for students in January. Read More

Change Ups: Posh Petals opens in remodeled storefront

October 17, 2014
Elizabeth Schenk launched her business, Posh Petals, as a home business but recently opened a remodeled storefront at 2050 Plainfield Ave. NE. Read More

Local economy is on faster track than national numbers

October 17, 2014
September is always a back-to-work month, and this year is no exception. Read More

Public Record

October 17, 2014
October 17 — Mortgages Read More

Street Talk: The parable of Noah as a 21st century contractor

Ford after 40.

October 17, 2014
Where several contractors are gathered, jokes are sure to follow. Read More