The Ottumwa Courier

June 8, 2013

Business Briefs

Ottumwa Courier

---- — Clingman-Taylor honored

RICHMOND, Va. – The Virginia Chapter of the International Association of Special Investigation Units (VA IASIU) has recognized former Ottumwan, Suzy Clingman-Taylor, Nationwide Insurance, as “Investigator of the Year” for her work on a staged accident investigation in Roanoke, Va., as well as her dedication and commitment to fighting insurance fraud in Virginia.

Clingman-Taylor was assigned an investigation on a claim involving collision damage and multiple injuries. The policyholder alleged that while a passenger in her own vehicle, the driver of her car lost control and struck two vehicles already stopped at a traffic light. The policyholder and the other three occupants of the insured vehicle were all claiming injuries. The physical damages included the insured auto and the two other cars.

The investigation revealed numerous prior losses involving the policyholder and her father, as well as their vehicles. Because of Clingman-Taylor’s efforts, the VSP obtained confessions from both the driver and the passenger in the vehicle, who also admitted to the staged accident during Examinations Under Oath.

Clingman-Taylor is a former officer with the Ottumwa Police Department and the daughter of Lynn Clingman of Ottumwa and the late Linda Kapp Clingman.

Hawthorne-Castro receives promotion

FAIRFIELD — Hawthorne Direct in Fairfield has promoted Jessica Hawthorne-Castro to chief operating officer. Hawthorne-Castro had been the company’s vice president of operations and client services. The announcement was made by Tim Hawthorne, chairman/CEO and founder of Hawthorne Direct.

Representing the “next generation” of brand marketing experts, Hawthorne-Castro, Tim Hawthorne’s daughter, will remain based in the company’s Western Regional offices in Los Angeles. In her new position, she will focus her efforts on the company’s internal affairs, helping to shape the future direction of the agency by empowering department heads with additional duties and ensuring the efficiency and productivity of all inter-departmental efforts, both in Los Angeles and the Midwest office locations.

CRP deadline is June 14

OTTUMWA — The deadline to enroll land under the Farm Service Agency’s General Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) is June 14.

Interested participants are encouraged to contact the Wapello County FSA Office to begin or complete the sign up process.

Following sign-up, all offers for CRP will be evaluated and ranked using an Environmental Benefits Index (EBI), which determines the environmental benefits to be gained from enrolling the land in CRP. The EBI consists of five environmental factors (wildlife, water, soil, air and enduring benefits) and a cost factor. Decisions on the EBI cutoff will be made after the sign-up ends and the EBI data of all offers is analyzed.

For more information on CRP, contact the Wapello County FSA office or go to the website at

Fairfield Hy-Vee a Blue Zones store

FAIRFIELD — The Fairfield Hy-Vee store has been recognized as the first certified Blue Zones designated Grocery Store out of the nine demonstrations sites with a population under 10,000.

Dee Sandquist, Fairfield Hy-Vee dietitian, coordinated the application process, which included criteria such as having a registered dietitian on staff, providing grocery store tours, increasing display space for select fruits and vegetables, offering taste tests of fruits and vegetables and labeling locally grown produce.

“Hy-Vee is proud to lead the way by receiving the Blue Zones Grocery Store designation, which directly ties to our motto of making lives easier, healthier and happier,” said Chad Romer, Fairfield Hy-Vee store director.

The Fairfield Hy-Vee store made several modifications in order to meet the Blue Zones criteria, including displaying Blue Zones-designated foods on end-caps, marking designated parking places to encourage patrons to walk farther and labeling healthy beverages as “healthy alternatives to sugar-sweetened beverages.”

Farmers eligible for loans

DES MOINES — Iowa State Executive Director for USDA Farm Service Agency John R Whitaker has announced that the U.S. Department of Agriculture has designated 39 Iowa counties as part of a Presidential Major Disaster Designation. Eligible family farmers with qualifying production and physical losses caused by severe storms, straight-line winds and flooding from April 17 through April 30, 2013, may be eligible for low-interest emergency loans.

The Presidential Major Disaster Designation has been issued for 19 Iowa counties as the primary disaster area. Area primary counties include Appanoose, Davis, Keokuk, Monroe, Van Buren and Wapello. Other Iowa counties are contiguous to this designated disaster area, making these producers also potentially eligible for program based on this designation, including Jefferson and Mahaska counties.

Interested farmers may contact their local county FSA office for further information on eligibility requirements and application procedures for these and other programs. Information can also be found on-line at

Liptak receives promotion

FAIRFIELD — Optimae LifeServices announces the promotion of Tracy Liptak, LISW to Southern Prairie Regional Clinical Director.

Liptak has worked for Optimae as program director of Jefferson/Van Buren County Community Services and as a therapist and director of children’s services at Life Solutions Behavioral Health.

She is a licensed independent social worker with a master’s degree from University of Iowa and an undergraduate degree from Bryn Mawr College. In addition to administration, she will be providing outpatient therapy at Optimae’s Life Solutions Behavioral Health offices in Fairfield and Ottumwa.

Ottumwans attend P.E.O. conference

OTTUMWA — Four delegates from Ottumwa recently attended the 121st annual Convention of Iowa State Chapter P.E.O. Sisterhood in Des Moines.

Janelle Husicker, Chapter G; Eileen Day, Chapter HC; Mary Graeff, Chapter HR; and Marilyn Barnes, Chapter IN, all attended.

P.E.O. is a philanthropic organization where women celebrate the advancement of women; educate women through scholarships, grants, awards, loans and stewardship of Cottey College and motivate each other to achieve their highest aspirations.

ECP signup at Farm ServiceAgency

OTTUMWA — Wapello County Farm Service Agency (FSA) has been approved to implement the Emergency Conservation Program (ECP) for heavy rainfall and flooding. Wapello County producers and landowners who have suffered terrace washouts, flood debris and sand deposits in fields and damage to eligible land and conservation structures may apply for assistance now through the signup deadline of Aug. 5.

To be eligible for possible ECP cost share assistance, producers must file an application and have an FSA employee visit the site to document damage before starting repairs. Failing to have the damage inspected prior to starting repair work could result in program ineligibility and denial of cost share assistance.

For more information, contact the Wapello County FSA Office. Information is also available online at