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  • March 2019

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    Beasley Allen Celebrates 40 Years

    County Commission Chairman Elton Dean, Mayor Todd Strange, Chamber of Commerce Executives, Beasley Allen attorneys, staff and other distinguished guests came together in January to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the firm now known as Beasley, Allen, Crow, Methvin, Portis & Miles, P.C. Chairman Dean and Mayor Strange read proclamations announcing Jan. 7, 2019, as Beasley, Allen, Crow, Meth-vin, Portis & Miles, P.C. Day and encouraged residents to recognize the positive impact of local and national service this firm and its founder, Jere L. Beasley, have provided for the last 40 years.
     
    The firm was founded in 1979 by Jere L. Beasley. The firm was established to provide legal service to both individuals and businesses who have been wronged by no act of their own, a protection provided by the Seventh Amendment to the United States Constitution, and that is a principle that still holds true at Beasley Allen. The firm has a national reputation for being at the forefront of Consumer Litigation, having se-cured more than $26 billion in verdicts and settlements for its clients as well as helping improve workplace safety and the safety of myriad products for consumers worldwide.
     
    What started as a one-lawyer firm has grown to a firm of more than 85 lawyers and over 200 support staff in Montgomery and Atlanta. Attorneys and support staff have been an integral part of the community, providing hundreds of hours of pro bono legal work, donating millions of dollars to charitable organizations and committing countless hours to community service as well as time and resources to revitalization efforts in the city’s downtown area. 
     
    New Insurance Option

    Guardian Credit Union recently announced the launch of Guardian Insurance Services, LLC, a wholly owned company that is a credit union service organization. It will offer property, casualty (home, auto, boat, motorcycle, etc.) and life insurance beginning in March 2019.  It’s available to members and non-members throughout the state of Alabama. Torey Hatfield will serve as the Vice President of Insurance Services and is also a member of the 2019 Montgomery Chamber Chairman’s Circle.
     
    Dreamland Bar-B-Q Marks 10 Years

    Dreamland Bar-B-Q Managing Partner Bob Parker is planning to celebrate the restaurant’s 10th anniversary April 9-12. There will be food giveaways, gift cards and merchandise giveaways. A lot has changed during the past 10 years when Dreamland first opened its doors and was the only business at The Alley in downtown Montgomery. It was located down the street from Riverwalk Stadium. The opening night was the same day as the Biscuits’ home opener.
     
    During the past 10 years, Dreamland had undergone multiple changes. Due to pit and chimney issues in its original location, it moved a block away in June 2017. It now has a brewery in its new location, has added two venues in the basement for private parties and has tweaked its menu. The one constant has been the employees, and Parker gives his 42 full- and part-time employees all the credit. “We have 224 years of Dreamland experience at this store,” Parker said. “Every manager here at some point started out as cook or server,” Parker said. “It’s the people who work here who have made us successful.”
     
    Today, when customers order takeout from the bar – and 25 percent of the business is takeout – there is a familiar face. There are a lot of familiar faces. The restaurant’s average employee has been there for 5.6 years.
    Parker also credits the Dreamland experience for its 10 years in downtown Montgomery. “Dreamland is a 60-year-old brand. It’s a 60-year-old tradition. People know about Dreamland. I don’t have to educate you about what Dream-land is,” he said. “It’s part of the culture in this state.”
     
    Baptist Health Named One of the Only Most Wired Hospitals in Alabama

    Continuing the commitment to digitally enabling the improvement of patient care, Baptist Health is among the top health systems in the country when it comes to using technology. The River Region’s largest healthcare organization recently received the distinct honor of being named one of College of Health- care Information Management Executives (CHIME) HealthCare’s Most Wired Hospitals.
     
    According to The College of Healthcare Information Management Executives (CHIME), the Most Wired list recognizes hospitals and health systems that are “at the forefront of using healthcare IT to improve the delivery of care.” The most successful organizations not only adopt technology but apply it strategically to achieve great outcomes, according to an analysis of the survey results. Baptist Health leaders have committed more than $10 million each year for the past two years to provide a generational infrastructure that is scalable to meet current and future technology needs. These needs change and grow every year, but Baptist Health’s promise to its patients and team members remains the same.
     
    “We are dedicated to equipping our clinicians with the latest tools available to ensure the delivery of high-quality care,” said W. Russell Tyner, CEO Baptist Health. “We are committed to delivering excellence and compassion to our patients; this includes using technology to enhance their patient experience.” 
     
    Healthcare is extremely information intensive, which goes hand-in-hand with the demanding work performed daily by Baptist Health’s team members. Baptist Health leaders say they will continuously work to keep up with this demand, but the underlying technology foundation is firm. Some of the advancements that led to the CHIME Most Wired Recognition include MyHRNow, a project that digitally enabled the recruiting and Core HR processes; Smart Square, which led to improved management of the nursing workforce; SpaceLabs Patient Monitoring & Waveform Integration, a project to improve patient monitoring capability; and more.
     
    “We believe in the last 18 months, we have significantly enabled Baptist, through technology, clinical and business innovation, to provide care and interoperability at a level comparable, or superior to, those of the top healthcare organization in the nation,” said Steve Miller, Baptist Health Chief Information Officer.
     
    BurgerFi Opening at The Shoppes at EastChase

    The Shoppes at EastChase recently announced that BurgerFi, a gourmet burger chain, is set to open its first Montgomery location at The Shoppes this summer. BurgerFi is a Florida-based concept with more than 100 locations nation-wide and this location will be the fourth to open in Alabama. The 3,200-square-foot space will seat more than 90 people between the inside area and patio. 
     
    The chain offers both meat-lover and vegetarian burgers like the VegeFi with crispy quinoa or the Beyond Burger with a veggie-based protein patty. Meaty varieties are made with black angus beef free from steroids, antibiotics, growth hormones, chemicals and additives. Diners can also enjoy smothered hot dogs, free-range chicken sandwiches, onion rings and fries mashups, plus custard cups and shakes.
     
    Caddell HR Director Adding to AGC Duties

    Matt Abele, Director of Human Resources at Caddell Construction, has been elected to serve as the 2019-2020 President of the Montgomery Chapter of the Alabama Associated General Contractors (AGC). Abele is already serving a three-year term at the national level as Chairman for AGC’s HR Forum Steering Committee—AGC’s voice for human resources issues, policies and practices. AGC of America is the leading association for the construction industry, rep-resenting more than 26,000 firms, including over 6,500 of America’s premier general contractors, and over 9,000 specialty-contracting firms.
     
    Organizations Honor Care Partners

    In November, Dementia Friendly Alabama partnered with AARP and First United Methodist Church’s RESPITE Ministry for the second annual Celebrating Care Partners Luncheon. Since caregivers deteriorate 75-percent faster than those they are caring for, the event is held to shed light on the importance of supporting caregivers.
     
    Speaker Anne Elizabeth McGowin, an attorney at Senior Law Solutions, shared her story with more than 20 attendees and offered her humorous and heart-felt “10-Steps to Caregiver Sanity.” McGowin also elaborated on why she feels driven to help the senior population.  
     
    Local Media Company Expands

    exploreMedia recently announced its partnership with Joy to Life magazine, a quarterly health-focused lifestyle magazine produced by the Joy to Life Foundation. exploreMedia will be handling the advertising sales and distribution of the magazine, helping the publication reach even more people with its engaging, informative content and helping spread the message of Joy to Life Foundation, a non-profit founded by Montgomerians Joy and Dickie Blondheim to promote breast cancer awareness and provide mammograms and other preventative screenings for uninsured (and underinsured) through-out Alabama.
     
    Charter Schools Approved

    Mayor Todd Strange recently joined state and local education officials to announce the Montgomery Education Foundation's formal approval on December 19 by the State Department of Education to create Alabama's first conversion charter schools by fall 2019. 
     
    The Montgomery County Board of Education and MEF must enter into a contract to drive the development of the charter schools. Once formalized, Davis Elementary, E.D. Nixon Elementary School, Bellingrath Middle School and Lanier High School will convert to charter schools over a four-year period, while still remaining part of the Montgomery Public Schools system. All schools will remain MPS property and the Board of Education will still maintain many fiscal and administrative duties. However, MEF will manage the schools and assume instructional delivery duties. School names will be retained, and the same students zoned to attend these schools today will have a seat at these schools tomorrow.
     
    MEF plans to forge a formal partnership with the Alabama Department of Education, Montgomery Public Schools and the greater Montgomery community to provide new and innovative learning environments, increased accountability, improved teacher support and raised expectations in the proposed con-version charter schools. Leading up to their launch, ongoing community listening, learning and planning sessions will be conducted.
     
    As of press time, the Montgomery County BOE had failed to vote on the contract with MEF, putting the charter school plans on hold.
     
    Self-Pour Beer Concept Coming

    Montgomery will become home to the first self-pour beer concept in Alabama. Tower Taproom, located in Montgomery’s Alley Entertainment District and occupying the former Dreamland location at 101 Tallapoosa Street, will feature more than 40 beers, wines and ciders allowing patrons to pour by the ounce using an RFID card. Tower Taproom is set to open first quarter 2019.
     
    Upon entrance, patrons wishing to enjoy the self-pour beer experience will be required to present a valid ID before being issued a unique custom tap card with a 32-ounce limit. The card will allow guests to pour anywhere from 1 ounce to 16 ounce with each pour. After the 32-ounce limit is reached, guests have the option to renew the card or settle their balance. Tower Taproom will also be a dining destination.
     
    “The popularity of craft beer continues to increase and has become a passion for many consumers. We are excited to bring the “pour-my-beer” self-pour technology to Alabama and especially downtown Montgomery,” said Jake Kyser, Owner of Kyser Property Management, LLC and Owner of Tower Taproom.
     
    New Outpatient Dialysis Facility in Montgomery

    Physicians Choice Dialysis recently announced its new, state-of-the-art, free-standing outpatient dialysis clinic located at 8149 Decker Lane in Montgomery. The clinic is open to all qualified nephrologists who wish to refer their patients and will offer all modalities including hemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis. Its offerings include onsite, full-time, local nephrologists; a full range of social work and dietitian services; and state-of-the-art equipment and technology.
     
    SACSCOC Reaffirms AUM’s Accreditation

    Auburn University at Montgomery’s accreditation was recently reaffirmed by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) for the next 10 years. AUM is accredited by SACSCOC to award bachelor’s, master’s, educational specialist and doctoral degrees. AUM first earned accreditation from SACSCOC in 1973, earning reaffirmation in 1978, 1988, 1998 and 2008.
     
    “We are quite pleased that the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges did not return any recommendations,” said Auburn University at Montgomery Chancellor Carl A. Stockton. “That is uncommon and speaks to the high quality of Auburn University at Montgomery’s academic programs, faculty and staff. The reaffirmation of accreditation is important for a variety of reasons. In addition to reinforcing the value of an Auburn University at Montgomery degree, the process offers an opportunity for self-study and examination of university standards, governance and finances, academic programs and student services. The results clearly show that we are on the right track.”
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