[ {"id":"afc4a969-2aa5-581c-af46-ff21a7ff6e02","type":"article","starttime":"1490504400","starttime_iso8601":"2017-03-26T00:00:00-05:00","sections":[{"business":"business"}],"application":"editorial","title":"DEE F. BRUEMMER: THE TRAILBLAZER","url":"http://qctimes.com/business/article_afc4a969-2aa5-581c-af46-ff21a7ff6e02.html","permalink":"http://qctimes.com/business/dee-f-bruemmer-the-trailblazer/article_afc4a969-2aa5-581c-af46-ff21a7ff6e02.html","canonical":"http://qctimes.com/business/dee-f-bruemmer-the-trailblazer/article_afc4a969-2aa5-581c-af46-ff21a7ff6e02.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":1,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"byline":"Jan Touney\nnewsroom@qctimes.com","prologue":"\u00a0\u00a0Dee F. Bruemmer learned the art of workplace management and organizational teamwork from someone very close to her\u00a0\u2014 her mother, Mildred \u201cTootie\u201d Fischer. The lessons came at a factory in Quincy, Illinois, where Bruemmer\u2019s mother was a supervisor for Motorola, and later, Matsushita Electric, which purchased the television manufacturing component of the company.","supportsComments":false,"commentCount":0,"keywords":["f. bruemmer","economics","politics","mildred fischer","work","public works","management","tim schiffer","davenport"],"internalKeywords":[],"customProperties":{},"presentation":"","images":[{"id":"e895d844-5a45-5ee8-9a25-a21fc3150039","description":"Dee Bruemmer in front of a 1943 painting by Max Beckmann at the Figge Art Museum in Davenport. Her nominator says: \u201c\u201cDee Bruemmer is known as an effective administrator who made significant innovations in efficiency, financial stability and environmental stewardship.\u201d","byline":"JEFF COOK, QUAD-CITY TIMES","hireswidth":1832,"hiresheight":1130,"hiresurl":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/e/89/e895d844-5a45-5ee8-9a25-a21fc3150039/58d0b69c1237d.hires.jpg","presentation":"","versions":{"full":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1832","height":"1130","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/e/89/e895d844-5a45-5ee8-9a25-a21fc3150039/58d0b69c1108d.image.jpg?resize=1832%2C1130"},"100": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"100","height":"62","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/e/89/e895d844-5a45-5ee8-9a25-a21fc3150039/58d0b69c1108d.image.jpg?resize=100%2C62"},"300": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"300","height":"185","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/e/89/e895d844-5a45-5ee8-9a25-a21fc3150039/58d0b69c1108d.image.jpg?resize=300%2C185"},"1024":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1024","height":"632","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/e/89/e895d844-5a45-5ee8-9a25-a21fc3150039/58d0b69c1108d.image.jpg?resize=1024%2C632"}}}],"revision":4,"commentID":"afc4a969-2aa5-581c-af46-ff21a7ff6e02","body":"

\u00a0\u00a0Dee F. Bruemmer learned the art of workplace management and organizational teamwork from someone very close to her\u00a0\u2014 her mother, Mildred \u201cTootie\u201d Fischer.

The lessons came at a factory in Quincy, Illinois, where Bruemmer\u2019s mother was a supervisor for Motorola, and later, Matsushita Electric, which purchased the television manufacturing component of the company.

\u201cThey brought in the total quality concept,\u201d said Bruemmer, who worked at the factory for several months before starting college at Illinois State University, Normal. She observed her mother\u2019s management style up close.

Her mother was the kind of supervisor \u201cthat when you needed help, they would stand next to you. Her whole role was to make sure that everything went smoothly and that people could keep up.\u201d

The nurturing, yet goal-oriented style, was not lost on her daughter.

\u201cWhen I went to public works (for the City of Davenport), I saw how that worked and what you meant to people around you.\u201d

Bruemmer, a 2017 Athena honoree, retired in 2016 after a 38-year career in the public sector. Her professional successes are many, ranging from being the first woman to be elected president of the Iowa City & County Management Association, to helping reorganize and streamline city operations with the City of Davenport, and, as Scott County administrator from 2008-2016, implementing processes that saved taxpayers millions of dollars.

Those paper yard waste bags that we set out at the curb? Bruemmer is responsible for bringing that concept to the community in response to a state mandate to reduce the amount of yard waste going into landfills.

The Davenport Public Works center on East 46th Street that was constructed during her tenure as public works director is named in her honor. It also is home to two sculptures that connect Bruemmer\u2019s public service to her love of art, a passion that was instilled in her by her father, Irwin Fischer, who encouraged her to sign on for a tour of Europe after she completed high school a semester early.

That trip, which included stops in London, Paris and Rome, she said, \u201cis where my world opened up.\u201d

The sculptures, Sophisticated Lady by Clement Meadmore and The Tuning Fork by Beverly Pepper, were formerly on the grounds of the Davenport Museum of Art. Bruemmer had oversight over the museum, including during construction of its successor, the Figge Art Museum, in her role in city management. Today, she is president of the Figge Art Museum Board of Trustees.

Figge Executive Director Tim Schiffer, who nominated Bruemmer for the Athena honor, noted her many accomplishments in public service.

\u201cDee Bruemmer is known as an effective administrator who made significant innovations in efficiency, financial stability and environmental stewardship,\u201d he said in his nomination. He said her long history with the art museum and her results-oriented management style have given her a unique perspective as a board member.

As she was completing a masters of public administration degree from Northern Illinois University, she spent three years as the administrative assistant to the city manager in Northfield, Illinois, an affluent suburb north of Chicago.

And while she described her time there as \u201ca great learning experience,\u201d she ultimately wanted to work for a community \u201cthat was not wealthy, had all income levels and was diverse.\u201d

Davenport fit the bill, and the city lifted a hiring freeze to get Bruemmer on board as assistant to the city administrator.

She credits her one-time boss, City Administrator Cowles Mallory, with being a mentor to her.

\u201cHe knew what he needed to do to change the culture of the organization,\u201d she said. \u201cHe allowed me to go to all kinds of classes\u00a0\u2014 on performance benchmarks, culture change, and organizational development.\u201d She was able to attend the prestigious John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University.

Female mentors in her line of work didn\u2019t exist at that time.

\u201cThere were none,\u201d she said, recalling a stormwater conference she attended in Ames, Iowa. The only other woman at the conference was the person at the registration desk handing out badges.

As she progressed through her career, she said, \u201cI didn\u2019t even know I was breaking barriers.\u201d

In retirement, Bruemmer remains active in the community, including being a member of the Quad-Cities Chamber of Commerce Q2030 Advisory Committee and on its Mississippi River Work Group.

It\u2019s a logical involvement for the woman who was born in a Mississippi River town and made her professional mark in another.

\u201cI cannot imagine living anywhere else but along the Mississippi,\u201d she said, when asked about the connection. \u201cIt was another one of my reasons for applying at Davenport so many years ago \u2026 It is the region\u2019s most valuable resource and its further investment will be a difference maker for our communities.\u201d

"}, {"id":"c01afa04-9a94-5320-bf61-57081c77cf7f","type":"article","starttime":"1490504400","starttime_iso8601":"2017-03-26T00:00:00-05:00","sections":[{"business":"business"}],"application":"editorial","title":"IWLC, Women's Connection move forward together","url":"http://qctimes.com/business/article_c01afa04-9a94-5320-bf61-57081c77cf7f.html","permalink":"http://qctimes.com/business/iwlc-women-s-connection-move-forward-together/article_c01afa04-9a94-5320-bf61-57081c77cf7f.html","canonical":"http://qctimes.com/business/iwlc-women-s-connection-move-forward-together/article_c01afa04-9a94-5320-bf61-57081c77cf7f.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":1,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"byline":"Jennifer DeWitt\njdewitt@qctimes.com","prologue":"Iowa Women Lead Change, or IWLC, a statewide women's leadership organization, has put down roots in eastern Iowa\u00a0and western Illinois\u00a0with its merger with the Quad-Cities' 20-year-old Women's Connection. In February, leaders\u00a0of IWLC and Women's Connection announced a new alignment in which the Cedar Rapids-based IWLC brought Women's Connection under its umbrella. The affiliation creates IWLC-The Women's Connection in the Quad-Cities and gives IWLC a presence across the state of Iowa with regional offices in Des Moines, Sioux City, Dubuque and now the Quad-Cities.","supportsComments":false,"commentCount":0,"keywords":["iowa","iwlc","deanna woodall","diane ramsey","tiffany o'donnell","iowa women lead change","women's connection","quad-cities","athena awards","work","company","industry","organization","economics"],"internalKeywords":[],"customProperties":{},"presentation":"","images":[{"id":"8fbb9f61-3be0-58d7-bbcc-56d9c3faecf1","description":"Woodall","byline":"","hireswidth":1481,"hiresheight":1399,"hiresurl":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/8/fb/8fbb9f61-3be0-58d7-bbcc-56d9c3faecf1/58cd96384423b.hires.jpg","presentation":"","versions":{"full":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1481","height":"1399","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/8/fb/8fbb9f61-3be0-58d7-bbcc-56d9c3faecf1/587d6ba72a010.image.jpg?resize=1481%2C1399"},"100": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"100","height":"94","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/8/fb/8fbb9f61-3be0-58d7-bbcc-56d9c3faecf1/587d6ba72a010.image.jpg?resize=100%2C94"},"300": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"300","height":"283","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/8/fb/8fbb9f61-3be0-58d7-bbcc-56d9c3faecf1/587d6ba72a010.image.jpg?resize=300%2C283"},"1024":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1024","height":"967","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/8/fb/8fbb9f61-3be0-58d7-bbcc-56d9c3faecf1/587d6ba72a010.image.jpg?resize=1024%2C967"}}}],"revision":5,"commentID":"c01afa04-9a94-5320-bf61-57081c77cf7f","body":"

Iowa Women Lead Change, or IWLC, a statewide women's leadership organization, has put down roots in eastern Iowa\u00a0and western Illinois\u00a0with its merger with the Quad-Cities' 20-year-old Women's Connection.

In February, leaders\u00a0of IWLC and Women's Connection announced a new alignment in which the Cedar Rapids-based IWLC brought Women's Connection under its umbrella. The affiliation creates IWLC-The Women's Connection in the Quad-Cities and gives IWLC a presence across the state of Iowa with regional offices in Des Moines, Sioux City, Dubuque and now the Quad-Cities.

\"We had intentionally not been in the Quad-Cities because Women's Connection was there and women were served,\" said Tiffany O'Donnell, IWLC's chief operating officer, and a Bettendorf native.

But as Women's Connection saw its staff dwindle to its executive director and funding sources shift, she said the organization was more taxed to retain its same level of services. O'Donnell credits Heidi Parkhurst, a former Athena honoree who served on the board of both organizations, with planting the seed for a consolidation. After much discussion, both boards approved the merger. \u00a0

\"We have the infrastructure, marketing and public relations, and logistics already in place,\" O'Donnell said. \"Now we can focus on the work in the Quad-Cities.\"

Since the merger announcement, IWLC has hired Deanna Woodall as its first Quad-City regional manager. In addition, IWLC recently unveiled a leadership succession plan, in which, co-founder and CEO Diane Ramsey will transition to a part-time role and O'Donnell will succeed her as CEO.

Here's a look at the new developments:

Q-C manager hired

An experienced fundraiser and events planner, Deanna Woodall will be responsible for all IWLC-The Women's Connection programs and events. IWLC has committed to retaining the signature events of Women's Connection, including the Athena Awards, the International Author event and the mentoring program Seat at the Table.\u00a0

Woodall founded her Event Solutions Group in 2013 after she and her husband, Rob Woodall, manufacturing director for\u00a0Arconic Davenport Works, returned to the Quad-Cities. The couple lives in Bettendorf and together have three children.

Woodall is thrilled by what the affiliation with IWLC will mean to raising the profile of Women's Connection. \"IWLC brings such a great name and great reputation,\" she said. \"Diane Ramsey is such a great individual to watch and learn from and what she's done for IWLC is amazing.\"

With some of the largest non-profit organizations in the region as clients, Woodall has\u00a0chaired fundraising events such as Share The Power of a Wish Gala for the Make-A-Wish Iowa Riverbend Committee, Opening Doors Gala for Family Resources, and Recycle the Runway event for Dress for Success Quad-Cities. She also is public relations and events director for the Niabi Zoological Society.

IWLC leadership shift

As part of a planned leadership succession two years in the making, Diane Ramsey will move from the helm of the organization she helped create to a part-time role overseeing some of its strategic initiatives, including the EPIC Corporate Challenge.

\"In the last 10 years, we have seen tremendous growth in our organization,\" Ramsey said. \"From my standpoint, I have really looked at how do we take this organization\u00a0\u2014 that started out as one event (a women's leadership conference) \u2014 to really being the thought leader for women to create these inclusive cultures where everyone can succeed.\"

Ramsey, who will relocate to Santa Fe, New Mexico, will focus her attention on the EPIC Corporate Challenge, a statewide initiative led by IWLC. Supported by Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad and Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds, the program's aim is to enlist Iowa companies and organizations to commit to the leadership of women and to track their progress on that commitment.

To date, she said nearly 50 Iowa organizations have signed on to commit to promoting women into leadership as well as measuring their success. But by 2025, IWLC has set a goal of signing on 500 member organizations. Through EPIC, the members are asked to track one or more of these metrics: the retention of women; the number in leadership; the number in senior leadership; women on their corporate boards;\u00a0pay equity.\u00a0

\"We found that the states that were having the greatest impact were those getting organizations to commit to what they were going to do to advance women,\" Ramsey said. \"We firmly believe for our state and region to be successful, we need to be very intentional about what organizations are doing to recruit, develop and retain the best talent they can.\"

"}, {"id":"577a1417-7306-5edc-a824-7e2c39d9a281","type":"article","starttime":"1490504400","starttime_iso8601":"2017-03-26T00:00:00-05:00","sections":[{"business":"business"}],"application":"editorial","title":"NANCY RENKES: THE CHAMPION","url":"http://qctimes.com/business/article_577a1417-7306-5edc-a824-7e2c39d9a281.html","permalink":"http://qctimes.com/business/nancy-renkes-the-champion/article_577a1417-7306-5edc-a824-7e2c39d9a281.html","canonical":"http://qctimes.com/business/nancy-renkes-the-champion/article_577a1417-7306-5edc-a824-7e2c39d9a281.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":1,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"byline":"Jan Touney\nnewsroom@qctimes.com","prologue":"Those who know Nancy Renkes and have worked with her during a career that has spanned positions in media advertising sales and fundraising for nonprofits might find it hard to believe she was classified as an \u201cintrovert\u201d during a pre-employment screening test. \u201cMy mother would tell you that I was the shyest human being,\u201d Renkes chuckles during an interview about her selection as one of the 2017 Athena honorees.","supportsComments":false,"commentCount":0,"keywords":["nancy renkes","work","commerce","economics","job","professional life","colleen rafferty","food","sales","terry wilson"],"internalKeywords":[],"customProperties":{},"presentation":"","images":[{"id":"e3b64355-e203-5cb0-8cf3-b7684e524cf2","description":"Nancy Renkes in the warehouse at River Bend Foodbank, Davenport. Her nominator says: \u201cShe has a way of making others around her believe they will succeed and then shows them by example how they can.\u201d","byline":"JEFF COOK, QUAD-CITY TIMES","hireswidth":1716,"hiresheight":1207,"hiresurl":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/e/3b/e3b64355-e203-5cb0-8cf3-b7684e524cf2/58d0b38fbfad9.hires.jpg","presentation":"","versions":{"full":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1716","height":"1207","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/e/3b/e3b64355-e203-5cb0-8cf3-b7684e524cf2/58d0b38fbe752.image.jpg?resize=1716%2C1207"},"100": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"100","height":"70","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/e/3b/e3b64355-e203-5cb0-8cf3-b7684e524cf2/58d0b38fbe752.image.jpg?resize=100%2C70"},"300": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"300","height":"211","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/e/3b/e3b64355-e203-5cb0-8cf3-b7684e524cf2/58d0b38fbe752.image.jpg?resize=300%2C211"},"1024":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1024","height":"720","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/e/3b/e3b64355-e203-5cb0-8cf3-b7684e524cf2/58d0b38fbe752.image.jpg?resize=1024%2C720"}}}],"revision":5,"commentID":"577a1417-7306-5edc-a824-7e2c39d9a281","body":"

Those who know Nancy Renkes and have worked with her during a career that has spanned positions in media advertising sales and fundraising for nonprofits might find it hard to believe she was classified as an \u201cintrovert\u201d during a pre-employment screening test.

\u201cMy mother would tell you that I was the shyest human being,\u201d Renkes chuckles during an interview about her selection as one of the 2017 Athena honorees.

The accomplishments of the 56-year-old Davenport native, who is development director at River Bend Foodbank, are hardly indicative of someone who\u2019s shy.

Renkes has spent most of her professional life in goal-oriented sales and fund-raising positions. As an advertising executive at the Quad-City Times and Muscatine Journal early in her career, it was her job to drive customers to her clients. At River Bend, her efforts put food on the tables and into the mouths of thousands of hungry people in a 22-county area served by the foodbank.

It is a mission she speaks of with intensity. She sees the faces of the people her efforts directly assist at mobile food pantries held monthly at the sprawling River Bend warehouse in west Davenport.

She tells of one child who asked, \u201cCan I have an apple?\u201d The child asked again, \u201cCan I have an apple?\u201d

Says Renkes, \u201cI know that child was hungry.\u201d

\u201cFood insecurity,\u201d or not knowing where your next meal is coming from, hits disproportionately at the elderly and children, she said.

\u201cHere I know that if I raise one dollar, it will provide five meals,\u201d she says.

And she has raised considerably more than that.

Colleen Rafferty, who was one of two people to nominate Renkes for the Athena honor, was co-executive director of The Women\u2019s Connection with her from 2011-15. She noted in the nomination that prior to Renkes joining River Bend, \u201cit raised roughly $1 million each year. This year, under Nancy\u2019s leadership, River Bend Foodbank will raise $1.7 million, a 70 percent increase in just three years.\u201d

Rafferty cited an example of Renkes\u2019 initiative to raise money for a program to provide backpacks of nutritious food for children to take home for the weekend. Filled backpacks similar to the ones provided to children were delivered by Renkes on Fridays to corporate executives with a note that said: \u201cImagine if you were still a child and this was all you had to eat over the weekend. For 1 in 5 children in the QCA, that\u2019s a reality.\u201d

She followed that up with\u00a0phone calls on Mondays.

\u201cNeedless to say,\u201d Rafferty wrote in the nomination, \u201cdonations skyrocketed.\u201d

Renkes smiles when reminded of the story, but quickly turns serious.

\u201cPeople can visualize a child eating that food,\u201d she said.

She characterized her job as \u201calways to get in front of people.\u201d

And she says that asking for money, whether in advertising sales or raising money for a nonprofit, is not a job for everybody.

\u201cIt has to not make your stomach hurt,\u201d she says is her advice for those wishing to get into a profession\u00a0that relies on raising money to be successful.

\u201cI\u2019m probably still a sales person at heart,\u201d she says.

Renkes attributes her career successes to being surrounded by strong women, beginning with her mother, Judy Crowley, who raised five children who were close in age, while her father, Tom, worked long hours.

\u201cI knew at some point I would have to step out of my comfort zone,\u201d she said. \u201cI have had some of the best mentors and friends. I can pick up the phone anytime and call someone for a bit of advice.\u201d

She admits her professional path was \u201cpretty unconventional.\u201d

\u201cI didn\u2019t go to college,\u201d she said. \u201cI wish I could say I had a plan. I just observed people who led me. The beauty of that is being exposed to many different management styles. I just found I liked helping people succeed.

\u201cMy unconventional path, it\u2019s not wrong. For me, it was being true to myself in how I like to learn and what energizes me. I want to know at the end of the day that I made a difference,\u201d she said.

Terry Wilson, an executive at Moline Dispatch Publishing Co., attests that she has. Wilson also nominated Renkes for the Athena award. They first met as co-workers at the Quad-City Times in 1985.

\u201cI have personally seen other women grow in confidence due to Nancy\u2019s resolve to lead them to success,\u201d he wrote. \u201cShe has a way of making others around her believe they will succeed and then shows them by example how they can. And most importantly, they do!\u201d

Renkes says her \u201cdown time\u201d is spent relaxing with friends and family, reading and exercising.

Looking back on a professional life full of meeting financial and strategic goals and helping others, she summarizes her philosophy: \u201cDo what\u2019s right for you. You have to pick your own path.\u201d

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The value of good work ethic has been with Beth Darnell since childhood.

A principal partner and founder in DMW Design, Davenport, Darnell was nominated for the Aethna Award by Jay Justin, with Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Mississippi Valley. Darnell said she is humbled by the nomination and learned about it when Justin called her to say, \"This has your name written all over it.\"

Darnell grew up in Rock Island, the eldest daughter of six children born to\u00a0 Ben and Barb Newcomb, both teachers. The fact she and two partners started their own business in 1993 should come as no surprise.

Darnell was just\u00a06 years old when, as a crafts enthusiast, she made and sold potholders in her neighborhood. \"We kids had to earn our own money for extras,\" she said.

To this day she enjoys craft and sewing projects, and lives about a block from the home where she grew up.

At the same time Darnell helps to run a $2 million local business that partners with some of the largest manufacturers and strongest organizations in the Quad-Cities.

After graduating from Rock Island High School, she entered Augustana College with the intention of becoming an industrial psychologist. She eventually dropped out of college, married and had a child.

Just over two years passed when Darnell, divorced, returned to the workplace.\u00a0In 1980 she started as a proofreader at the firm\u00a0that then was located in Rock Island and called McGladrey, Hendrickson & Pullen.

At McGladrey, she was given a chance to work in marketing, and was made an assistant in marketing while attending college full-time. She and the department's director developed brochures, promotional materials and training aides.

This became the basis for her professional interest in marketing, graphics and communications.

In 1987, Darnell got her degree in business administration and joined Vicomm, Moline. It was a new position and she was responsible for growing the business, as well as marketing the company.

Vicomm was a full-service design firm, and even had a dark room for photography, and typesetters for design work. \"I really enjoyed the work at Vicomm, and was good at it,\" Darnell said. Clients were Deere & Co., Alcoa, now Arconic, and local suppliers to the large manufacturers.

There was a great group of folks at Vicomm who enjoyed working together, Darnell said, including Sue Munz and Brent Wessels. In the early 1990s, after seven years at Vicomm, Darnell, Munz and Wessels took the plunge and formed DMW Design.

Darnell specializes in marketing and customer service, Munz in creative design, and Wessels in sign graphics. \"The three of us have similar approaches to our work, and to people,\" she said.

The first office was on State Street, Bettendorf. Darnell's daughter, Andrea, was 8 years old at the time. She'd bring home projects and spend time with Andrea and then complete the work after the child went to bed.\u00a0

In addition, DMW Design had strong client relationships that lasted when the trio started the new firm. \"We were blessed,\" Darnell said. \"It all worked out well.\"

The design firm stayed in Bettendorf until the location was demolished. They moved to the current location, 5000 Tremont Ave., Davenport, and have been there 10-15 years.

People are the most important part of the business, said Darnell, who still values face-to-face relationships.\u00a0

Among her customers is Kathy Wine, of River Action Inc. Darnell has served on River Action's marketing committee for three years.

She was introduced to Wine when River Action was working on a way-finding system. These, Wine said, are the historic marker panels and interpretative signage, set up along the Mississippi River, and in other locations.

River Action uses DMW Design for banners, signs and stickers. \"They are a one-stop shop,\" Wine said. \"They not only design well, they figure out how to get things built, and installed.

\"Beth,\" Wine said, \"is very talented. She's just excellent, and such a sweet person. She is very, very generous with her time.\"

Nominator Justin said Darnell is the first person he calls when he needs to bounce off an idea. \"I have used her help with several projects and every time, Beth has a new and creative way of looking at how we solve a problem or develop an opportunity,\" Justin wrote on the nomination form.

In 2014, Darnell won the Iowa Volunteer Service Award from Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad. More recently, in 2016, she was given the Big Impact Award from Bis Brothers Big Sisters.

Big Brothers Big Sisters, Darnell said, shows the power of mentoring. She thinks about her daughter, who now works at DMW Design. \"You only get a few moments to make a difference, and the years just fly by,\" she said.

This thinking has made Darnell a role model to Justin for more than 20 years. \"Her approach to work and life are the same, which I have used her example to motivate me. She is without a doubt one of the most special people I have ever met,\" he wrote in the nomination.

"}, {"id":"42d5e3b3-54c9-555b-8629-f82c4c32e19c","type":"article","starttime":"1490504400","starttime_iso8601":"2017-03-26T00:00:00-05:00","sections":[{"business":"business"}],"application":"editorial","title":"ANN O'DONNELL: THE COMFORTER","url":"http://qctimes.com/business/article_42d5e3b3-54c9-555b-8629-f82c4c32e19c.html","permalink":"http://qctimes.com/business/ann-o-donnell-the-comforter/article_42d5e3b3-54c9-555b-8629-f82c4c32e19c.html","canonical":"http://qctimes.com/business/ann-o-donnell-the-comforter/article_42d5e3b3-54c9-555b-8629-f82c4c32e19c.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":1,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"byline":"Doug Schorpp\nnewsroom@qctimes.com","prologue":"After working 11 years as a registered nurse, Ann O\u2019Donnell decided to apply to medical school to become a doctor. When she was accepted, she remembers telling her grandfather, Dr. Jack Sunderbruch, about that decision. \u201c \u2018It\u2019s about time. You have been a frustrated doctor since you got into nursing,\u2019\" he told her at the time.","supportsComments":false,"commentCount":0,"keywords":["ann o'donnell","medicine","hospital","work","jack sunderbruch","julie c. delaney","davenport","doctor","care","hospice"],"internalKeywords":[],"customProperties":{},"presentation":"","images":[{"id":"cbff9ab5-ec39-5c67-b17a-22ada0585649","description":"Dr. Ann O\u2019Donnell in the chapel of the Clarissa C. Cook Hospice House in Bettendorf. Her nominator says: \u201cHer leadership style demonstrates caring and compassion along with an effective, no-nonsense ability to get the job done.\u201d","byline":"John Schultz, QUAD-CITY TIMES","hireswidth":1836,"hiresheight":1129,"hiresurl":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/c/bf/cbff9ab5-ec39-5c67-b17a-22ada0585649/58d03c09a5aaf.hires.jpg","presentation":"","versions":{"full":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1836","height":"1129","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/c/bf/cbff9ab5-ec39-5c67-b17a-22ada0585649/58d03c09a4d0f.image.jpg?resize=1836%2C1129"},"100": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"100","height":"61","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/c/bf/cbff9ab5-ec39-5c67-b17a-22ada0585649/58d03c09a4d0f.image.jpg?resize=100%2C61"},"300": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"300","height":"184","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/c/bf/cbff9ab5-ec39-5c67-b17a-22ada0585649/58d03c09a4d0f.image.jpg?resize=300%2C184"},"1024":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1024","height":"630","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/c/bf/cbff9ab5-ec39-5c67-b17a-22ada0585649/58d03c09a4d0f.image.jpg?resize=1024%2C630"}}}],"revision":8,"commentID":"42d5e3b3-54c9-555b-8629-f82c4c32e19c","body":"

After working 11 years as a registered nurse, Ann O\u2019Donnell decided to apply to medical school to become a doctor.

When she was accepted, she remembers telling her grandfather, Dr. Jack Sunderbruch, about that decision.

\u201c \u2018It\u2019s about time. You have been a frustrated doctor since you got into nursing,\u2019\" he told her at the time.

That relationship with\u00a0the legendary west end Davenport physician played a major role in her career choice and her approach to her profession. That especially impacts her now as medical director of Genesis Post-Acute Care in the area of hospice care for those facing the end of their lives.

\u201cI worked with him for a couple of years before he retired,\u201d she said.\u00a0Sunderbruch died in 2006 at age 95.

\u201cVery little of that is what we learned in medical school,\u201d she said. \u201cYou can learn to be a hospice doctor. But unless you feel compassion, your feelings will not continue. Some may attribute that to being a nurse.

\u201cBut some of that is being a woman. You have to show some vulnerability with families when they lose a loved one.\u201d

Those qualities, plus dedication and hard work, were noticed by Julie C. Delaney, principal at St. Paul the Apostle Catholic School, Davenport, who nominated O\u2019Donnell for the Athena Award.

\u201cDr. O\u2019Donnell generously gives of her time and energy in a variety of capacities at St. Paul\u2019s, as a parent volunteer, as our board of education president, in her role as a physician in coordinating efforts to vaccinate all of our kindergarten through eighth grade students, and within the church community,\u201d Delaney said in her nomination letter.

\u201cWith the many hats that Dr. O\u2019Donnell wears in making the Quad-Cities a healthier community, she shines as a role model for women of all ages. Her leadership style demonstrates caring and compassion along with an effective, no-nonsense ability to get the job done.\u201d

Before becoming medical director of Genesis Post-Acute Care one year ago, D\u2019Donnell served as medical director of Genesis Community Based Hospice, Clarissa C Cook Hospice House and Visiting Nurse Association, was in private practice of internal medicine from 1998 to 2012, and also has held several medical directorships over the years.

Today, her passion focuses on the best hospice care possible.

\u201cPart of our life is our death,\u201d she said. \u201cI want to make sure for people, that part of their life, gets the best care. I get personal satisfaction providing that service.

\u201cBut it is a team of people that I handle. It is not just one person. It is a coordinated effort. I am so fortunate to have the team of people that we have.\u201d

Being nominated for the Athena Award\u00a0is a great honor, she said.

\u201cI believe that I am here as a leader to be part of developing more leaders, not followers,\u201d she said. \u201cI don't do what I do to draw attention to myself. I do it to draw attention to our community. Whether that is the Genesis Foundation community where we work to provide the funds for the students in schools to receive their flu shots, or the community of people I work with at the nursing homes and senior centers to improve the quality of care that our elderly receive, or the community of Genesis hospice care providers.

\u201cWe strive each and every day to do our best so that those who are at or near the end of their life receive the comfort and support that they need and deserve. And if this award helps draw attention to those things, well then it just can't get any better than that.\u201d

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Past Athena Award honorees in eastern Iowa and western Illinois are:

2016: Recipient: Maggie Tinsman,\u00a0retired Iowa State senator. Honorees: Tara Barney, Quad-Cities Chamber of Commerce; Colleen Rafferty, Ten Friends Blow Dry & Style House; Tracy Schwind, Northwest Bank & Trust Co; Linda Wastyn, Wastyn & Associates. \u00a0

2015: Recipient: Dr. Ida Johnson, founder and executive director of United Neighbors Inc. Honorees: Dr. Nancy Hayes, St. Ambrose University; Jodie Kavensky, NormaLeah Ovarian Cancer Foundation; Natalie Linville-Mass, Media Link Inc.; Kathleen Repass, Henry County Economic Development Partnership; and Kathy Wine, River Action.

2014: Recipient: Mary Ellen Chamberlain, Riverboat Development Authority president. Honorees; Teri Johnson, Jason's Box and UnityPoint Health-Trinity; Meg Schebler, Ashford University, Clinton; and Laura Swift, Quad-Cities Investment Group.

2013: Recipient: Sarah Lande, former executive director of Iowa Sister States. Honorees: Joy Boruff, Moline Foundation; Angela Moody, Arrowhead Ranch; Heidi Parkhurst, Merrill Lynch.

2012: Recipient: Gayle Roberts, Stanley Consultants president and CEO. Honorees: Diane Campbell, Muscatine Community School District; Carmen Darland, Quad-City Arts; Kelli Grubbs, Victory Enterprises; Pat Shouse, Trinity Regional Health System; Sally Welvaert, John Deere Classic.

2011: Recipient: Sister Joan Lescinski, St. Ambrose University president. Honorees: Julie Bechtel, Quad-City Times; Denise Bulat, Bi-State Regional Commission; Caroline Ruhl, Ruhl & Ruhl Realtors; Jackie Staron, River City Tire; Ginny Wilson-Peters, Integrity Integrated.

2010: Stephanie Acri, Evans Premium Manufacturing; Linda Duffy, Assumption High School; Jennifer Rowe, Serv-A-Lite; Cynthia Tidwell, Royal Neighbors of America.

2009: Dr. Lisa Brothers Arbisser, Eye Surgeons Associates; Kim Armstrong, Black Hawk College; Cheri Bustos, Iowa Health System; Linda Neuman, Iowa Supreme Court; Dana Wilkinson, Paragon Commercial Interiors.

2008: Mary Junck, Lee Enterprises; Christy Kunz, Junior Achievement Worldwide; Jan Masamoto, JTM Concepts; Linda Newborn, Deere & Co.; Heidi Schultz, Management Resource Group.

2007: Michelle Gau, Alleman Catholic High School; Roxanne Kramer, Always A Woman Boutique; Mary Lagerblade, retired, Mel Foster Co.; Diane Nelson, Girl Scouts of Eastern Iowa and Western Illinois.

2006: Pamela Fisher, Two Rivers Massage and del Sol; Denise Spindel, Quint Co. Inc.; Dr. Barbara Suelter, United Township High School superintendent; Cathie Whiteside, Quad-City Bank and Trust; Marie Ziegler, Deere & Co.

Male Champion of Change recipients

2016: Randy Moore, Iowa American Water; Dr. Joseph Rives, Western Illinois Univerity; Rick Seidler, UnityPoint Health-Trinity; Joe Slavens, Northwest Bank & Trust Co.

2015: Todd Hopkins, Lujack Lexus of the Quad-Cities; Douglas Hultquist, QCR Holdings; Steve McCann, McGladrey LLP; and Rob Woodall, Alcoa Davenport Works.

2014: Pat Eikenberry, Missman Inc., and Bill Leaver, UnityPoint Health.

"}, {"id":"da48bdad-6119-59cd-b0a7-006d45e2c6bf","type":"article","starttime":"1490504400","starttime_iso8601":"2017-03-26T00:00:00-05:00","sections":[{"business":"business"}],"application":"editorial","title":"IWLC-Women's Connection celebrate 2017 Athena honorees","url":"http://qctimes.com/business/article_da48bdad-6119-59cd-b0a7-006d45e2c6bf.html","permalink":"http://qctimes.com/business/iwlc-women-s-connection-celebrate-athena-honorees/article_da48bdad-6119-59cd-b0a7-006d45e2c6bf.html","canonical":"http://qctimes.com/business/iwlc-women-s-connection-celebrate-athena-honorees/article_da48bdad-6119-59cd-b0a7-006d45e2c6bf.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":5,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"byline":"Jennifer DeWitt\njdewitt@qctimes.com","prologue":"Under a new combined structure, Iowa Women Lead Change (IWLC)-The Women's Connection will honor five Quad-City women whose leadership in the workplace and beyond is helping to inspire a new generation of women leaders. 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Under a new combined structure, Iowa Women Lead Change (IWLC)-The Women's Connection will honor five Quad-City women whose leadership in the workplace and beyond is helping to inspire a new generation of women leaders.

The 2017 Athena Awards will celebrate the Athena honorees and announce the 2017 Athena recipient at a luncheon Thursday at Rhythm City Casino Resort, Davenport.

The awards ceremony, which continues a 12-year\u00a0tradition launched by Women's Connection, will mark the first event for the newly combined IWLC-Women's Connection. The statewide IWLC, headquartered in Cedar-Rapids, merged last month with Women's Connection, based in the Quad-Cities.

This year's Athena honorees are:

Additionally, five men will be honored as the Male Champions of Change for their commitment to the acceleration of women in leadership and for\u00a0using their influence, talents and abilities to enhance gender diversity.\u00a0

This year's Male Champions of Change are:

\"We are really a fortunate community to have such fine women and men in our midst,\" said Deanna Woodall, the new Quad-City regional manager for IWLC-Women's Connection.\u00a0

She said the annual event is a chance to celebrate and promote the work these leaders do for their professions, the mentoring they provide and their service to the community.

The event also puts a spotlight on the need for gender diversity in the workplace, Woodall said.\u00a0 \"Just taking a moment out in our lives to lift up these women, and the men who are advocating for their women staffers, is so important.\"

The Athena Awards began in 2006 with a partnership between the Women's Connection and the Quad-Cities Chamber of Commerce. They were developed to honor area women who excel in their profession, make a significant difference in the community and empower other women to be leaders.

In 2011, the program merged with Athena International and adopted its standards for the awards \u2014 including the selection of a single Athena recipient.\u00a0

Woodall said this year's five honorees were selected from\u00a021 nominees submitted by the public and narrowed to five honorees by the previous year's honorees. The Athena recipient then is chosen by a selection committee made up of IWLC-Women's Connection staff, board members and chamber representatives.

"}, {"id":"7052f166-6b0e-5df7-8e96-24ed7f0036cc","type":"article","starttime":"1490489644","starttime_iso8601":"2017-03-25T19:54:04-05:00","priority":0,"sections":[{"business":"business"},{"national":"news/national"}],"flags":{"ap":"true"},"application":"editorial","title":"No gunshots fired in store burglary at Bellagio in Las Vegas","url":"http://qctimes.com/business/article_7052f166-6b0e-5df7-8e96-24ed7f0036cc.html","permalink":"http://qctimes.com/business/no-gunshots-fired-in-store-burglary-at-bellagio-in-las/article_7052f166-6b0e-5df7-8e96-24ed7f0036cc.html","canonical":"http://www.apnewsarchive.com/2017/Las-Vegas-police-now-say-there-weren-t-shots-fired-during-a-burglary-at-a-high-end-retail-store-inside-the-Bellagio-Hotel-and-Casino/id-64a7c9be51ab4f20aae611b134fbe41a","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":0,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"prologue":"LAS VEGAS (AP) \u2014 Las Vegas police now say there weren't shots fired during a burglary at a high-end retail store inside the Bellagio Hotel and Casino.","supportsComments":false,"commentCount":0,"keywords":["wire","business","general news","burglary","theft","crime"],"internalKeywords":["#lee"],"customProperties":{},"presentation":null,"revision":1,"commentID":"7052f166-6b0e-5df7-8e96-24ed7f0036cc","body":"

LAS VEGAS (AP) \u2014 Las Vegas police now say there weren't shots fired during a burglary at a high-end retail store inside the Bellagio Hotel and Casino.

Authorities initially said Saturday that at least three people entered the store and one of them fired gunshots.

But Vegas police and MGM Resorts International later said that there was no gunfire. The sound of glass breaking was misinterpreted, police said.

No one was injured, and a suspect was taken into custody.

Another initial report indicating an active shooter also proved to be false.

Parts of the casino property were closed for the investigation.

"} ]