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Briefly in the News: February

Briefly in the News: February

Chamber Showcase 2014

Be sure to purchase booth space to participate in this year’s Chamber Showcase, presented by William Woods University, March 4 at the Holiday Inn Expo Center from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. As of mid-January, more than 90 percent of available booths were already sold, with only a dozen still available for purchase.

“Booth space at this event sells very quickly every year, but we are always glad to have just a few left open at the beginning of the year for new businesses and those last-minute planners,” says Teresa White, Chamber Showcase co-chair. Each year, renewal efforts begin in August and new sales, November.

White recommends preplanning for the event so promotional materials will have arrived and work schedules can be set. “Choosing the right employees to man the booth is a huge factor in representing the best aspects of your business,” she says. It’s also important to have a plan of action to follow up on new contacts and leads from the Showcase, she adds.

The day will begin with the Chamber breakfast, break for the Women’s Network luncheon and keynote speaker and conclude with the Columbia Business Times mixer.


BHC, Top Three

Boone Hospital Center was recognized for its success in minimizing complications following hip and knee surgery. Based on newly released government data, BHC is one of 97 hospitals nationwide — and one of only three in Missouri — to receive the recognition.


2013 Infrastructure Report

The Columbia City Council approved the 2013 Infrastructure Report Dec. 16, 2013. The report is intended to better inform citizens of completed and upcoming infrastructure projects and can be viewed at:



More than 2,300 graduates received degrees during the University of Missouri’s winter commencement ceremonies.


Saving Sight

Missouri Lions Eye Research Foundation, a regional nonprofit founded in Columbia in 1960, changed its name to Saving Sight. According to a press release, the new name more effectively reflects the organization’s mission: “We change lives by saving sight.”


Mandela, on a Local Level

In the wake of Nelson Mandela’s death Dec. 5, the University of Missouri’s College of Education has found its own way to give back. The school has begun a partnership with the University of the Western Cape in Capetown and the Robben Island Museum in South Africa to digitize thousands of historical papers, photos and more related to the political prisoners held at Robben Island.
Mandela himself was incarcerated at Robben Island, along with former Archbishop Desmond Tutu and South African Constitution author Albie Sachs, for opposing Apartheid.


$416.5 Million

On Nov. 19, 2013, a deed of trust was recorded in Boone County regarding the sale of State Farm’s Columbia campus to LSREF2 Tractor REO (Direct) LLC. Dallas-based private-equity firm Lone Star Funds formed the LLC, which borrowed $416.5 million from the Royal Bank of Canada to purchase 23 State Farm properties in 18 cities across the United States, including Columbia, in a package deal.

The CBT previously reported State Farm’s intentions to begin leasing its facility in August. At the time, local State Farm spokesman Jim Camoriano said the plans to sell and lease back the Columbia office were part of a policy the company was implementing across the United States.


6 in 1 Year

MFA Oil Co. acquired Smoky Mountain Propane Dec. 5, 2013, the sixth company it’s acquired since January. Smoky Mountain Propane is based out of Sylva, N.C., and has been owned and operated by Darrell and Lisa Pruett for 12 years.


100 Mbps

Residential and business customers in Columbia can now connect to CenturyLink high-speed Internet. The company has expanded its services and now offers connection speeds up to 100 Mbps.


We’re No. 1!

Columbia has been named the No. 1 small city based on performance in a number of categories, including growth of jobs, GDP and salaries. Columbia jumped nine spots, coming in 10th in 2012, according to


All Booked Up

The City of Columbia celebrated the full occupancy of retail space within the Fifth and Walnut parking structure Dec. 6.


Faster Pharmaceuticals

MU researchers Gavin King and Krishna Sigdel have developed an advanced 3-D microscope that could help pharmaceutical companies bring drugs to market faster.


2,927 Pounds

Employees at Boone County National Bank competed in a bankwide food drive and collected 2,927 pounds of food for the Food Bank for Central and Northeastern Missouri. The drive coincided with its annual employee appreciation breakfast.


33 Acres

MFA Oil Co. purchased the 33-acre commercial site where Mamtek U.S. Inc. had planned to build a sucralose production facility in Moberly, Mo.


One in Five

The MU School of Medicine is one of five recipients of a national award for innovation in medical education and research. Linda Headrick, senior associate dean for medical education at the MU School of Medicine, led MU’s application for the Learning Health System Challenge Award.


Got Trust?

According to a recent MU study, social trust and community connectedness may have a positive effect on entrepreneurship within a community.

Colleen Heflin, an associate professor at MU’s Truman School of Public Affairs, along with Seok-Woo Kwon of Temple University and Martin Reuf of Duke University, analyzed U.S. Census data and community surveys to find that communities with higher levels of perceived social trust had a higher rate of self-employed residents than communities with lower levels of social trust.


Top in Tech Transfer

The Association of Public Land-grant Universities has distinguished MU for its efforts in innovation and entrepreneurship, technology transfer, talent and workforce development and community development.

MU, along with 16 other public institutions, received the designation as an Innovation and Economic Prosperity University. Since 2008, MU has filed 278 U.S. patents and signed 204 options and licenses for new technologies developed at the university that, in total, account for around $1 billion in sales revenue, according to an MU News Bureau press release.



Toronto based Bio Pharma Services Inc. announced its expansion into the United States by establishing a new 48-bed Phase I Clinical Facility in Columbia at 300 Portland St.


IT in Elderly Care

Researchers at MU will be the first to study the current relationship between IT systems and quality of nursing home care across the country. The study will examine how IT affects different aspects of nursing home care, such as resident care, administrative activities and clinical support.

Greg Alexander, associate professor at the MU Sinclair School of Nursing, is the lead researcher of this study.


Adaptive Design Grant

Two MU researchers recently received the Richard Wallace Faculty Incentive Research Grant to continue a project designing clothing for individuals with disabilities, such as formal wear for wheelchair-bound individuals or clothing for amputee victims.

Kerri McBee-Black, an instructor in the textile and apparel management department, and Allison Kabel, an assistant professor in the department of health sciences, believe the grant will assist them in publishing their research and creating tangible products.

Since the project began in 2012, more than 80 students have participated in the adaptive design process.


10 Percent

According to Missouri REALTORS sales data, both the average and median prices were up 10 percent and 9.8 percent, respectively, from October 2012 to October 2013. The time it took to sell a home dropped 10 days in that same period. The only negative trend was in overall home sales, which slowed 2.7 percent compared to October 2012.

For November, average and median prices were up 5.1 percent and 1.6 percent, respectively, from November 2012 numbers. The average time it took to sell a home decreased 11 days from November 2012 to November 2013.


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