Business Insider

Achievements by Treasure Valley people at work: June-July 2016

To see photos of people in this roster, see Business Insider’s print edition (after it is published June 15), e-edition (subscription required) or digital-replica “flipbook” available on the Business Insider page.


Mike Kerby has received the American Advertising Federation’s Silver Medal for achievement in the industry and contributions to the community. Kerby is president of c308 Marketing, a digital marketing agency he founded in 2003.


Eric Bastian has joined the United Dairymen of Idaho as vice president of industry relations. He was vice president of research and development for Glanbia Nutritionals and Glanbia Foods. Bastian earned a bachelor’s degree in dairy science and master’s and doctoral degrees in nutrition and food sciences at Utah State University.

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Don Riffle, executive vice president of sales, marketing and global supply chain development at Clear Springs Foods in Buhl, plans to retire at the end of November. Kurt Myers was promoted to vice president of sales and marketing effective June 1. Myers joined Clear Springs Foods one year ago with 20 years of experience in the food industry.

Jessica Henry has joined Clear Springs as director of marketing. Henry has six years of marketing experience and graduated from the University of Oregon with a bachelor’s degree in social science.


CTA Architects Engineers of Billings, Mont., has added three employees in Boise to its associate ownership group. They are Lindsay Erb, project architect, who joined CTA in October 2006; Chris Goslin, refrigeration team leader/project manager, who joined in October 2009; and Spencer Shepard, regional mechanical department manager, who joined in October 2010.

Jim Otradosky, has been elected a principal stockholder with Boise’s CSHQA. Otradosky has 26 years of experience, joined the firm in 2000 and joined its board in 2012.

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Joe Bruce of Insight Architects in Boise has completed his intern development program and architectural registration exams. He has 16 years of experience, including 10 at Insight.

Arts and Culture

Opera Idaho has three new members of its board of directors: Dr. N. Anjum Fazlani, Sharon Hubler and Dr. Kevin McCusker.

Fazlani, who recently joined Saint Alphonsus Medical Group, received his medical degree from Dow University of Health Sciences in Pakistan and an MBA from Xavier University in Cincinnati. Fazlani has been associated with the Cincinnati Opera for the last 25 years.

Hubler grew up in Caldwell and earned a bachelor’s degree from The College of Idaho. She was executive director of the Idaho Foundation for Parks and Lands from 1976 to 2010.

McCusker moved to Boise in April 2014 to join the Keystone Medical House Calls practice. He dances Argentine tango and salsa and recently participated in an Opera Idaho Iron Chef competition.


The Meridian Chamber of Commerce and Leadership Meridian have announced the second inductee to the Leadership Meridian Hall of Fame: Leah Shotwell, a partner at Foley Freeman PLLC and 2013 graduate of Leadership Meridian.

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The Boise Metro Chamber of Commerce launched a series of events to welcome and introduce new Treasure Valley business leaders to their peers in the community.

The executives in the second event, held in May, included Pete Battista, president, Boise Office Equipment; Karen Bilowith, president and CEO, Idaho Community Foundation; Aaron Black, general manager, Inn at 500 Capitol; Odette Bolano, president, Saint Alphonsus Regional Medical Center; Sheri Davis, president and CEO, Junior Achievement of Idaho; Lynn Hightower, executive director, Downtown Boise Association; Richard Jalichandra, CEO,; Amy Little, executive director, Idaho Nonprofit Center; Charlene Maher, president and CEO, Blue Cross of Idaho; Tara Miceli, executive director, Carrington College; Rob Perez, regional president, Bank of the Cascades; Brent Taylor, executive director, Wyakin Warrior Foundation; and Breanna Vanstrom, CEO, Boise Regional Realtors.

In the first event last November, the chamber honored Debra Leithauser, president and publisher, Idaho Statesman; David Duro, president and CEO, Treasure Valley Family YMCA; and Brad Wilson, general manager, Bogus Basin.


CapEd Credit Union has announced new branch managers for Nampa, Eagle and Boise.

Ana Moroshan is manager of the new South Nampa Member Convenience Center. Moroshan has 16 years of experience. A Nampa High School graduate, she received a bachelor’s degree from George Fox University.

Debbie Arant is manager of the Eagle Branch at 80 E. Riverside Drive. She has 26 years of experience.

Melanie Richey is manager of the branch McMillan and Cloverdale roads. She has 16 years of experience and joined CapEd four years ago.

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Don S. Evans III has been appointed to the board of family-owned D.L. Evans Bancorp and D.L. Evans Bank. Evans is vice president and branch manager of the Cole and Emerald branch in Boise and has been an employee of the bank since 2004.

Also serving on the board of directors are Don S. Evans Jr., the chairman; John V. Evans Jr., the vice chairman; Martha E. Gilgen, secretary; and David L. Evans IV, Larry L. Evans, Paula D. Evans, Susan Evans Scarlett and Glen Kunau.

Brenda Sanford, chief administrative officer of D. L. Evans Bank, has been recognized as an outstanding alumna by the College of Business and Economics at Boise State University. Sanford began her career with the bank in 1986 and earned her bachelor’s degree in business administration from Boise State.

Jim Reames has been promoted to senior vice president and branch administrator for D.L. Evans Bank at the Downtown Boise branch, 890 W. Main St.. Reames has been with D.L. Evans since 2015 as vice president and manager at the Nampa Karcher branch.

Tony Vahsholtz has been promoted to vice president and manager at that branch at 1536 Caldwell Blvd. He joined the bank in 2014 with 16 years of lending experience.

Diane Moffat has been appointed commercial loan officer at the Nampa Karcher branch. She has 16 years of banking experience.

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Carla Easterday has been promoted to internal audit manager for Idaho Independent Bank. Easterday joined the bank in April 2006 as an Internal Auditor and was promoted to Internal Audit Supervisor in 2009.

Lacy Makovsky to been named customer support manager for Idaho Independent Bank. She joined IIB in February 2008 as a Teller and was promoted several times.

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David C. Cooper has been named senior relationship manager for Key Private Bank’s Idaho market. A lawyer, he has 20 years of experience in financial services.

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David Hall has joined the Meridian commercial banking team of Washington Trust Bank as vice president and commercial real estate relationship manager. He has 10 years of commercial real estate banking experience.

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Bank of the Cascades has expanded its Southwest Idaho home lending team to include a regional mortgage manager and six mortgage loan officers. They are:

Rich Johnson, the regional mortgage manager, has 20 years of residential lending experience in Southwest Idaho, most recently as regional manager of Axia Home Loans and previously as leader of U.S. Bank’s home-lending efforts in Boise.

Erik Vanderwiel, the mortgage loan officer for the Eagle branch, has 21 years of local experience, most recently at Zions Bank.

Patricia “Trish” Christensen, serving the Meridian-Silverstone, Kuna and Ustick branches, has been in local lending for 20 years, most recently at U.S. Bank Home Mortgage.

Shawn Graham, serving the Boise, Meridian and Broadway branches, has 14 years of home lending experience and another 14 as a business owner. He most recently was Idaho area manager for Castle & Cook.

Marty Lytle, serving the Eagle and Garden City branches, has 10 years of experience, having worked for Benchmark Mortgage, Les Bois Credit Union and Sterling Savings Bank.

Sylvia Boyer, serving the Mountain Home branch, has 22 years of experience.

Jedd Fly, serving the Nampa, Fruitland and Emmett branches, was assistant branch manager for the Idaho Central Credit Union in Nampa since 2012.

Virginia Godina-Ortiz, serving the Nampa-Karcher and Caldwell branches, has 25 years of banking experience, the last 13 at Zions Bank.


Boise State University has hired Tammi Vacha-Haase as dean of the Graduate College to start in early August. She succeeds Jack Pelton, who stepped down after 15 years to return to teaching in the Department of Geosciences.

Vacha-Haase has served as associate dean at Colorado State University since 2013, where she previously directed the Aging Clinic of the Rockies and was a psychology professor.

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The University of Idaho has named Alison Carr-Chellman dean of the College of Education, effective July 1.

She comes from Penn State University, where she has worked for 20 years. She is a professor of learning, design and technology in Penn State’s College of Education and heads the Department of Learning and Performance Systems.

The College of Education is moving into a renovated building this summer.

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Two University of Idaho faculty members have received the National Science Foundation awards for early career scholars. Tara Hudiburg, an assistant professor of forest science in the College of Natural Resources, and Craig McGowan, an assistant professor of biological sciences in the College of Science, earned Faculty Early Career Development awards, and through them a combined $1.7 million in research funding.

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The University of Idaho Alumni Association inducted three members into its Hall of Fame: John Ford Elsaesser Jr., Mark Hedge and Brian Oswald.

Elsaesser received his law degree from the U of I College of Law in 1977. He co-founded a Sandpoint law firm now known as Elsaesser Jarzabek Anderson Elliott & Macdonald. Elsaesser has been the bankruptcy professor at the College of Law for 10 years.

Hedge grew up in St. Anthony and graduated from the College of Engineering in 1985 with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering. In 1995, he co-founded Lochsa Engineering with fellow alumnus Jess Haldeman, ’84 and ’86. Hedge previously served on the U of I Foundation board.

Oswald received his doctorate from the College of Natural Resources in 1992. He has been a forestry professor at Alabama A&M University in Huntsville, is a professor in fire ecology, silviculture and range management at Stephen F. Austin State University in Nacogdoches, Texas, which he joined in 1995.

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Barbara Petty has been named University of Idaho extension director after 18 months as interim director. She is an 18-year member of the U of I faculty.

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Alex Bollinger, professor of the Idaho State University College of Business, has been recognized as the Faculty Member of the Year by the Associated Students of ISU. Bolinger has been with the College of Business for five years teaching courses in organizational behavior, negotiation and strategic management.

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Mary Nies, director of nursing research at Idaho State University, received the 2016 Distinguished Nurse Alumna Award from the University of Illinois College of Nursing in Chicago, where she earned a doctorate in nursing science.

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Idaho State University psychology professor Tera Letzring has received a $406,358 grant from the National Science Foundation to study whether making accurate judgments of emotions helps people make accurate judgments of trait. Letzring and her team will conduct four studies over three years looking at observers’ judgmental focus and manipulating the validity of affect and trait information.

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American Falls native Juan Martinez, a recent graduate from the College of Arts and Letters at Idaho State University, was awarded a Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship in Mexico slated to begin in August. A spring 2015 political science graduate, Martinez will teach English to students and utilize his political and legal work experiences. While Martinez does not know exactly where he will be assigned yet, but his duties will last nine months.

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Idaho State University psychology professor Joshua Swift will receive the Early Career Award from the American Psychological Foundation and the Society for the Advancement of Psychotherapy this August. Swift’s research is on psychotherapy process and outcome.


Breckon Landdesign in Garden City has added Matthew Derr to its project management team. Derr has 17 years of professional consulting experience in civil engineering design and construction.

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Parametrix has hired Josh Thomas and David Longenecker to support the Boise office with design and inspection on highway projects for the Idaho Transportation Department and local governments in the Treasure Valley.

Thomas has 14 years of experience in roadway and industrial rail design and plan preparation and four years in roadway materials testing and quality control/quality assurance procedures. He comes from AECOM.

Longenecker has 34 years of experience as a project inspector and has worked for Ada County Highway District for 30 years.

Financial Services

Kevin Learned, past president of the Boise Angel Alliance, has been elected to the national board of the Angel Capital Association effective July 1. He is an administrator of the alliance’s three angel funds and a partner in Loon Creek Capital Group, which helps communities create angel funds.


Terry Little, the Ada County Highway District’s traffic services manager, has been named Engineer of the Year by the Southern Idaho Section of the American Society of Civil Engineers. Little has been a civil engineer for 43 years and an ACHD employee for 24 years.

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Mike Lock, an officer with the Meridian Police Department who was a student resource officer in the Meridian schools, has retired after 24 years.

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Gary Mahn, Gavin Gee and Warren Bakes have been named by Gov. Butch Otter to new four-year terms on the Idaho Endowment Fund Investment Board, ending in 2019.

Mahn, of Boise, is a retired businessman and former director of the Idaho Department of Commerce who was appointed to the board in 2012.

Gee, of Boise, the board’s vice chairman, is a lawyer and the director of the Idaho Department of Finance, which regulates state-chartered financial institutions, the mortgage and securities industries, and other financial-service providers. Gee was first appointed to the board in 1995 by Gov. Phil Batt and subsequently reappointed by Govs. Dirk Kempthorne and Otter.

Bakes, of Hayden, is a faculty member at the University of Idaho and previously served for 32 years as a teacher, principal and superintendent in Idaho schools.

The nine-member board manages $2.5 billion in investments including several endowment funds and the assets of the State Insurance Fund.

Health Care

Joe Rudd has been named executive director of Life Care Center of Boise, a skilled nursing and rehabilitation center at 808 N. Curtis Road that is one of nine centers in Idaho operated or managed by Life Care Centers of America. He comes from Marquis Cos., where he was administrator for facilities in California and Idaho for 15 years.

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Dick Armstrong and Dan Schmidt have been recognized by the Idaho Academy of Family Physicians. Armstrong, director of the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare, received the IAFP Health Care Policy Award. Schmidt, a family physician and state senator from Moscow, received the IAFP Award for Legislative Advocacy.

Hospitality and Tourism

The Courtyard by Marriott Boise West-Meridian has promoted Kelly Dickson, former assistant general manager, to lead the hotel’s management, and hired Megan Heiman as catering manager.

Dickson has four years of experience at the 145-room hotel, beginning in 2012 as executive chef of its restaurant.

Heiman has six years of experience in catering and event management, most recently in Des Moines, Iowa.

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The Inn at 500 Capitol has hired Jessica Ray to lead hotel operations and Curt Asmussen to direct sales for the Downtown Boise boutique hotel, which is expected to open later this year.

Ray has been employed with Obie Development Partners, the Eugene, Ore., developer of the Inn at 500 Capitol, for two years. She recently transferred to Boise.

Asmussen has 10 years of sales and management expertise, most recently at a hotel in Illinois. He previously directed sales at The Boise Hotel and Conference Center, the Marriott TownePlace Suites Meridian and the Doubletree Riverside Hotel.


United Heritage Mutual Holding Co. has added Boise executives John W. Holleran and Michael M. Mooney to the Meridian company’s board. They also joined the boards of two subsidiaries, United Heritage Financial Group and United Heritage Life Insurance Co.

Holleran has 20 years experience as general counsel for public companies. He recently retired as executive vice president and chief operating officer of Itron Inc., a Nasdaq-listed technology company in Spokane. He previously was executive vice president, general counsel and chief administrative officer for Boise Cascade Corp. and Boise Cascade LLC.

Mooney recently retired as president of the Bank of the Cascades, Idaho Region, after a 42-year banking career.

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United Heritage Insurance has named Steven D. Hauschild of Spokane to succeed Richard E. Hall of Boise as chairman of United Heritage Mutual Holding Co. and its subsidiaries, United Heritage Financial Group and United Heritage Life Insurance Co.

Lawyer Diane L. Polscer of Portland was named to succeed Hauschild as vice chairman.

Hall joined the board of United Heritage Mutual Life Insurance Co. in 1990 has been chairman of the holding company since its formation in 2001. He continues in his practice as an attorney with the law firm of Duke, Scanlan and Hall PLLC in Boise.


John A. Bush, of Boise, has been selected as Idaho’s 2016 James J. May Trial Lawyer of the Year by the Idaho Trial Lawyers Association. Bush and his longtime law partner, David Comstock, have a law practice in Boise focusing on medical malpractice, seeking to obtain justice for plaintiffs. The award is named after a retired Idaho judge who was ITLA’s first president.

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Tom Dvorak, Judd Montgomery, Deborah Nelson and Bob White have been selected by their partners in Givens Pursley LLP for the Boise firm’s executive committee.

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Kris Ormseth, a partner with Stoel Rives LLP in Boise, has received the 2016 Legacy of Leadership Award from the Leadership Boise Alumni Association. Ormseth is the immediate past chair of the Boise Metro Chamber of Commerce and was the office managing partner from 2003 to 2009 and 2012 to 2015.


Arlene Schieven, the first president and CMO of the Sun Valley Marketing Alliance, also known as Visit Sun Valley, is resigning in July to return to her native Canada to become president and CEO at a tourism-promotion agency for Sun Peaks Resort in British Columbia.


Logan Osterman has been promoted to advertising director at the Idaho Statesman. For the past three years he has led the Statesman’s digital sales team.

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Nichole Santa Maria has been appointed digital sales manager for KTVB News Group. Previously, she was KTVB/KTFT senior digital account executive and KTFT digital sales manager. KTFT airs KTVB’s signal in Twin Falls with local commercials.

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Tom Michael, founder and general manager of Marfa Public Radio and West Texas Public Radio, will take over as general manager at Boise State Public Radio beginning July 6. Marfa is a town in West Texas.

Real Estate

Elizabeth Walker has joined Coldwell Banker Tomlinson Group in its Downtown Boise office. Walker has been in Boise for 22 years and is a graduate of the University of Idaho.

Mandie Metier has joined the agency’s Meridian office as a Realtor. She is an Idaho native with 15 years of customer-service experience.

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Ron Berning, a Realtor with Century 21 Magellan Realty since 2015, recently became a certified military residential specialist. An entrepreneur and nonprofit leader in Boise since 1986, he previously was the founder and director of META, a nonprofit microbusiness agency serving disadvantaged entrepreneurs in southwest Idaho.

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Knipe Land Co. is expanding to include a residential division, Knipe Residential, in the office at 860 Beacon St. in Boise. Janey Knipe will head the division, and Jenny Nelson will be her licensed real estate assistant.

Knipe, raised on a ranch in Parma, has associate degrees in drafting technology and accounting and has worked for Knipe Land Co. for 12 years.

Nelson received a bachelors degree in interior design from Seattle Pacific University and a master’s degree in design for sustainability from Savannah College of Art and Design in Georgia.

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Aaron Nemec, of Boise, has joined Academy Mortgage as executive vice president of production. Nemec has nearly two decades of experience, most recently at Guild Mortgage, where he spent two years as executive vice president and national retail manager.


Albert and Jill Dickson have opened Caring Transitions of Treasure Valley, a Caring Transitions franchise, to serve Meridian, Nampa, Caldwell, Boise and surrounding Ada and Canyon counties. Caring Transitions manages senior relocations, downsizing and estate liquidations and prepares homes for market.

Albert Dickson spent 32 years in health care, including 10 in the U.S. Navy. He spent the last 25 years as a cardiovascular specialist and the last 13 of those at St. Luke’s Regional Medical Center.

Jill Dickson has 30 years of experience in sales and finance, mostly in the automotive industry.

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The Idaho Nursery and Landscape Association says eight Treasure Valley residents became Certified Nursery Professionals in May:

Stacie Gombert, of Boise, self-employed with SolScape; Bev Van Engelen, of Meridian, working at FarWest Garden Center; Rebecca S. Terry, of Boise, employed at North End Organic Nursery; Jennifer M. Down, of Nampa, employed at the Potting Shed and the Valley Club in Hailey; Heather LaRocco, of Boise, employed with Franz Witte; Natalie Kravtsov, of Boise; Christian Allen, of Nampa; and Shawn Gayner, of Meridian.


Jon D. Osburn, of Boise, has been recognized by the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association for 28 years of safe, accident-free driving of a commercial tractor-trailer.

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Professional truck drivers from Idaho competed in May in Meridian for honors and the chance to represent the state and their companies at the National Step Van and Truck Driving Championships in August in Indianapolis. Among the highlights:

David Murphy, Meridian, repeated his 2015 victory in the five-axle class. Kevin Winn, Twin Falls, took home top honors in the three-axle class for the second year in a row.

Old Dominion Freight Lines made a strong showing, including having drivers awarded two of the event’s special awards. William Hill Jr., Marsing, took home the best pretrip award, and Ryan Matos, Meridian, was named rookie of the year.

Hill also captured the Grand Champion award for the best overall performance.


Idaho Power has recognized employees with 25 or more years of service:

Mike Spengler was hired June 3, 1985, as a groundman; rehired July 14, 1986, as a custodian in Boise and now works as a power quality tech in Boise.

Darrin Stewart was hired May 28, 1991, as a control wiring electrician helper in Boise and now works as project solutions and estimation leader at the CHQ.

Idaho Power announced the retirements of Steve Carson, 43 years; Jeff Hickey, 39 years; Steve Browne, 35 years; Greg Said, 35 years; Scott Larrondo, 34 years; Marie Koger, 24 years Darrell Berg, 23 years; Dave Brown, 22 years; Michael Andrews, 10 years; and Ron Stockdale, 10 years.

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Byron Defenbach, manager of energy utilization for Intermountain Gas Co, is retiring after 28 years with the company. He will be succeeded by Cheryl Imlach, a 24-year Intermountain Gas veteran who has been manager of revenue accounting for the past 11 years.

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