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November: Briefly in the News

Landmark Holds County Deposits

Boone County selected Landmark Bank as its holder of deposits for the next two years. A county panel analyzed the costs and income of three depository proposals before selecting Landmark.

Tom Schwarz, senior vice president for commercial sales and strategy, said in a press release, “As a local community bank, Landmark Bank greatly values the opportunity to work with the County of Boone as their banking partner.”

MU Nursing Innovation

The Sinclair School of Nursing’s Doctor of Nursing Practice program has found success in technology integration: using cost-effective strategies to bring quality graduate education to nursing students on campus and online. The program received the Central Region Excellence Award from the University Professional and Continuing Education Association. The award is given spontaneously, based on merited nominations, rather than on a regular basis.

Sinclair Dean Judith Fitzgerald Miller said, “This award reflects the able leadership of DNP program director Robin Harris, the focus area and specialty option coordinators, as well as the hard work and dedication of the entire faculty to achieve excellence.”

McDavid Will Not Run Again

Columbia Mayor Bob McDavid announced he will not seek re-election in April. McDavid was first elected in 2010, and he is in his second three-year term as mayor. Mayoral candidates may file for office until January 12, 2016.

Mediacom Launches 1-GIG

Mediacom, a cable and communications provider in Columbia and Jefferson City, is introducing high-speed, 1-gigabit Internet to their residential network in mid-Missouri. Mediacom’s previous top residential speed was 150 MB per second, and with 1,000 MB in a GB, the new service should be noticeably quicker.

Mediacom’s main area facility is in Columbia, where the company has made a “substantial financial investment” for 1 GB capacity. Mediacom will make the service available to customers in Columbia, Jefferson City and Holt’s Summit. Mid-Missouri will be Mediacom’s first area with residential 1-gig capacity.

Phyllis Peters, Mediacom communications director, says the company has provided business customers with up to 16 GB speeds.

Film Festivals Among The Best

Stephens College’s Citizen Jane Film Festival was selected for MovieMaker magazine’s 2015 list of the 25 coolest film festivals in the world. The True/False Film Fest made its second appearance on the list, giving Columbia two 2015 winners. Austin, Texas is the only other city to do so.

MU Biomed Grants

MU awarded five grants to accelerate biomedical research projects with potential for consumer application. As part of the school’s ongoing effort to help research projects become profitable businesses, the MU Coulter Translational Partnership awarded approximately $500,000 in grant money to five biomedical projects.

Among the funded projects is a hands-free device, made with Google Glass, for first responders in mass casualty disasters and an improved salmonella testing system. MU’s partnership with the Wallace H. Coulter Foundation is one of 16 such relationships in the country. The program will also help researchers make connections in the private industry.

Chick-Fil-A Opens

Columbia’s first Chick-Fil-A franchise opened on Stadium Boulevard. The Restaurant is owned by Jeremy Stouder, who has been working with Chick-Fil-A’s corporate grand opening team, which helps launch franchisees around the country; he’ll now focus on operating a restaurant himself. Chick-Fil-A plans to open 88 new locations in 2015.

As part of the grand opening, Stouder held a book drive benefitting the Boys and Girls Club of Columbia.

Hancock Symposium

Westminster College held their annual lecture series in September, bringing in a number of speakers to discuss the 2015 theme, “Security vs. Liberty: Balancing the Scales of Freedom.” The school’s Churchill Institute invited lecturers including the U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security, Jeh Johnson.

911 Center

The county celebrated the groundbreaking for the new 911 call center on the campus of the Boone County Sheriff’s Department. The building will be funded by a 3/8 cent sales tax approved by voters in April 2013.

CoMo Startup Teams Up With Bayer

Elemental Enzymes, an agriculture science company that works out of the Missouri Innovation Center, announced a research partnership with Bayer CropScience. The two companies want to improve the life of crops by using licensed Elemental Enzymes technology.

Soil microbes developed by Elemental Enzymes will be used to improve crop health and productivity, using the Bayer platform to introduce the product to farmers around the world.

Elemental Enzymes was founded with research done in MU’s Bond Life Sciences Center. Drs. Brian and Kate Thompson founded the company in 2011, and they won the Missouri Small Business and Technology Development Centers’ Rising Star of Innovation award in 2012.

Startup Weekend Winners

Startup Weekend Columbia, a three-day contest to launch new businesses with local entrepreneurs, celebrated its fifth year in September.

The first place prize, which comes with $2,000 in seed money and a package of startup resources, went to StaffedUp, a web platform for small and midsize businesses to recruit and compete for talented employees. The company is tailored to retail and service employers and wants to provide efficiency and user-friendliness in staffing.

The second and third place prizes respectively went to Tenant Loop and eSportsBooth. Tenant Loop provides mobile communication between tenants and landlords to make property management easy and personal; eSportsBooth is an online sportswear marketplace for the gaming community.

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