Names and Notes, Jan. 22, 2017

Barajas joins board

Marshalltown Regional Partnership CEO David Barajas Jr., was recently selected to serve on the board of directors of the Greater Des Moines Partnership.

The GDMP board is made up of 73 business and economic development leaders from throughout the Greater Des Moines region. As a member of the board, Barajas will be representing the Marshalltown region and areas outside of the Des Moines metro in helping to set the direction of the Greater Des Moines Partnership.

Area contractors recognized as State’s Construction Safety leaders

DES MOINES — The Associated General Contractors of Iowa announced the winners of the AGC of Iowa Recognition of Safety Excellence Awards, awarded to contractors who demonstrate a cultural commitment to safety and proudly sponsored by Arthur J. Gallagher Risk Management Services, Inc. This year’s award winners were announced at the ROSE Awards luncheon during AGC of Iowa’s 95th Annual Convention in Des Moines, Iowa.

Winners have innovative safety programs and strive towards zero work site fatalities and multi-catastrophic injuries. Top safety programs also have active employee participation, safety training, and work site hazard identification and control.

First place ROSE Award winners include:

Peterson Contractors, Inc., of Reinbeck, Grading & Underground Utilities Division. Greater than 1 Million Work Hours

Second place ROSE Award winners include:

OEL Construction Services, Inc.,of Steamboat Rock, Portland Cement Paving Division. Less than 100,000 Work Hours

Johnston writes second novel

In Cherish: Behold, I Knock, Debby L. Johnston offers the second installment in her Christian-fiction novel series about Reverend Andy Garrett and the endearing members of his small-town church in Cherish, Ill.

Life is never dull for the unflappable faithful who calmly eradicate bats from their sanctuary, patiently endure the musical uncertainties of a deaf substitute pianist and affectionately celebrate a wild-haired, poetic church secretary. As a new minister, Garrett also finds out what happens when the water of the baptistry boils over the night before a baptism, how his unchurched bartending background can be used by God to bring hope to a drug-addicted teen and how members of Garrett’s own family can be redeemed and healed from a dark tragedy of the past.

Cherish: Behold, I Knock is published by WestBow Press, a division of Thomas Nelson and Zondervan. It may also be purchased or ordered from the local Stepping Stones Christian Bookstore in Marshalltown.

Debby L. (Langland) Johnston grew up in Marshalltown and graduated from Marshalltown High School in 1967. She also attended Judson University in Elgin, Ill., and graduated with a B.A. in Fine Arts. She and her husband, Rev. D. Scott Johnston, have served in churches for 40 years. Both are now retired and live in Ohio. For more information on the author go to:

Nord and Thurston attend retreat

Coldwell Banker Premier real estate agents Fauna Nord and Kelli Thurston, of Marshalltown, recently attended the Mike Ferry Production Retreat in San Diego, Calif.

At the retreat, they were trained in more home buying and selling techniques, while brushing up on their skills of negotiating contracts, customer service, working with buyers, pricing properties and selling and closing skills.


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Potential subjects of these business briefs include announcements of new businesses, branch acquisitions, departures of longtime employees, employee recognitions or new hires. Submissions will be edited and run on a space-available basis. Items must be received by 5 p.m. Thursday for consideration in Sunday’s column.

Submit brief articles and JPEG headshots to: Names & Notes, Newsroom, Times-Republican, 135 W. Main St., Marshalltown 50158, or call Kathy Beane at 641-753-6611 or email