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Dakota Electric has been named Minnesota's Outstanding Philanthropic Organization. Pictured are Mike Ferber (left), president of Fundraising Solutions; Janet Lekson and Greg Miller of Dakota Electric; Heidi Droegemueller, president of Association of Fundraising Professionals; and Jim Sheldon of Dakota Electric.

Sorting through the many nominees

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Red Wing Area Chamber of Commerce will again recognize outstanding manufacturer, newcomer to the chamber, restaurant, retailer and service business of the year.

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"We're very excited because we've had an overwhelming number of nominees," President Patty Brown said. There were nearly 60.

Chamber staff members are complying profiles on each nominee. The recognition banquet will be Jan. 16.

Manufacturer nominees are Automated Equipment, Capital Safety, Hydratight, Nestle Purina PetCare Co., Norwood & BIC Graphic North America, Red Wing Shoe Co., SCS-AIM, Sturdiwheat and Welchwoods Custom Cabinetry.

Newcomer nominees are All Creatures Veterinary Clinic, Cut-N-Edge, Enhanced Image, Excel Financial, Goodhue County Habitat for Humanity, Main Street Car Wash, Patterson Chiropractic, Pearle Vision, Red Wing Area Seniors and United Way of Goodhue, Wabasha & Pierce Counties

Restaurant nominees are Brickhouse Pub & Grill, Culver's, Fiesta Mexicana, Jimmy's Pub, Liberty's Restaurant and Lounge, Marie's Underground Grill & Tap House, Provenzano's Ristorante, Randys, Smokey Row Café and the Port.

Retail nominees are Bella Casa Interiors, Buchanan Grocery, Christian Book Store, Chuck & Don's Pet Food Outlet, Econo Foods West, Josephson's Clothing, Meatheads Meats & Deli, Moments on Main, Nesbitt's Nursery, Red Wing Ace Hardware, Red Wing Shoe Store, River Valley Landscape/Power & Sport, Slumberland, the Levee, Uffda Shop and West End Liquor.

Service nominees are Alliance Bank, Anchor Promotions/Underground Graphix, Body Kneads Massage & Wellness Centerm Confluence Marketing, Essential Chiropractic, Express Employment Professionals, Hiawatha Broadband Communications, Marketplace Commercial, Neufeldt Industrial Services, Patterson Chiropractic, Pearle Vision, Potter Ridge Assisted Living, Red Wing Trolley Co., Sonus Hearing Carem White Rock Bank and Will-Do-Truckin'.

• The Association of Fundraising Professionals has named Dakota Electric Association the Outstanding Philanthropic Organization for 2011.

As a not-for-profit cooperative, Dakota Electric takes the seventh cooperative principle seriously as it shows support for community through employee volunteer efforts and contributions, President Joe Miller said.

While the cooperative doesn't have a large budget for donations, it does stretch what it has to spread the donations around its service territory, providing support for youth clubs, sporting activities, school districts, non-profit organizations, health and human services, emergency responders, special fundraising activities and more, he said.

Each year, through the company's internal Dakota Cares campaign, employees donate approximately $20,000 to local charities through the United Way, Community Health Charities and a local food shelf.

• Pat Irrthum of Wanamingo was elected by her peers to represent Minnesota Farmers Union at the National Convention in Omaha, Neb. The event will be March 4-7, 2012.

Delegates will be advocating for meaningful payment limitations, a strong safety net for all crops when prices are low, as well as for dairy farmers when the farm gate price falls below production.

• Todd Siewert from Siewert's Garage in Red Wing received the American Towman ACE Award for achievements in service performance. The American Towman Magazine each year recognizes the top 1 percent in the towing industry. Major motor clubs and dispatch centers including GEICO, National Automobile Club, National Motor Club and National Safe Drivers nominate people.

• Charlene Rigelman of Old Frontenac has been named to New York Life Insurance Co.'s 2011 President's Council, placing her in the top 8 percent of the company's 11,900 licensed agents.

• Dr. Leroy Otto has been appointed to the International Board of Chiropractic Examiners. He will be primarily responsible for developing examinations for licensure in Central and South America.

Otto also serves as vice president of the Federation of Chiropractic Licensing Board. He is president of Lake City Chiropractic Clinic and Downtown Chiropractic in Red Wing.

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Anne Jacobson
Anne Jacobson has been editor of the Republican Eagle since December 2003. 
(651) 301-7870
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