EPA Approves Spear®-Lep Bioinsecticide for Use on Outdoor Crops

Published on September 20, 2018
Kalamazoo, Michigan – Vestaron Corporation today announces approval from the EPA of its Spear®-Lep bioinsecticide for control of lepidopterans in high- value field crops.

This approval makes Spear®-Lep the second peptide-based product developed by Vestaron, following the full EPA approval and subsequent commercial launch of Spear®-T for greenhouse crops this July.

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MLIVE: Western Michigan had $1.6 billion impact on local economy last year

Published on September 14, 2018
By Kayla Miller

KALAMAZOO, MI — Western Michigan University contributed over $1 billion dollars to the Kalamazoo-area economy in a one-year span, according to a new report.

The economic impact the university has on the region is about $1.6 billion, according to a report paid for jointly by Western Michigan University and Southwest Michigan First.

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WKZO: Southwest Michigan First Business Update

Published on September 5, 2018
KALAMAZOO (WKZO-AM/FM) — WKZO’s Ken Lanphear is joined by Southwest Michigan First’s senior partner & ceo, Ron Kitchens, to talk about regional trends in job growth, workforce, and employer efforts to keep on pace with demand.

Listen here.

The Great Debate with Greg LeRoy and Ron Kitchens: Predicting the Future of Economic Incentives

Published on September 4, 2018
Development Counsellors International — To Incentivize or Not Incentivize? Southwest Michigan First’s Ron Kitchens appears as a guest, along with Executive Director Greg LeRoy of Good Jobs First, on Development Counsellors International’s podcast to debate the role of economic incentives in America’s future.

Listen here.

The stars (and three new jobs) are aligned in Marcellus

Published on August 27, 2018
Marcellus, Mich. – TriStar Molding, a family-owned custom plastics injection molding company located in Marcellus, will bring three new jobs to that community.

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WKZO: Southwest Michigan First Business Update

Published on August 9, 2018
KALAMAZOO (WKZO-AM/FM) — WKZO’s Ken Lanphear is joined by Southwest Michigan First’s senior partner & ceo, Ron Kitchens, to talk about regional job announcements, primary outcomes and civil discourse.

Listen here.

How to Hit the Talent Bull’s-eye

In 2010, during the mad scramble from the nadir of the Great Recession, renowned business leader Alfred O. Weber, recently retired, strode into a hotel conference room in Detroit.

In January of that year, Weber had been named co-president and CEO of MANN+HUMMEL GmbH, a global leader in the manufacture of oil, fuel, and air filters. Weber was in Michigan visiting executives from MANN+HUMMEL USA’s location in Portage.

Digging for Treasure

COMPANY
Getman Corporation

WEBSITE
getman.com

REGIONAL LOCATIONS
Headquartered in Bangor, with a second manufacturing facility in Comstock Charter Township

NUMBER OF EMPLOYEES
170

EXECUTIVE
Erik VanAllen, President & CEO

Cooking up Creativity

HOW DO YOU APPROACH DESIGN FROM YOUR POSITION AT WHIRLPOOL?
Whirlpool represents many brands around the world, including Maytag, Jenn-Air, Amana, and KitchenAid, just to name a few. I head up the design of all of Whirlpool’s cooking products globally.

My team and I spend a lot of time on what we call “assisted cooking.” As designers, our mantra is to help our consumers deliver more consistent results to the table. Imagine the ability to create the perfect custard, for example. When you make a custard, you have to use a wooden spoon, and, as you stir, you have to watch how the bubbles cling to the spoon when you wipe them off. That’s how you tell a custard is done—it’s not easy. Our goal is to create solutions that empower our consumers to deliver that chef-level result every time. We want you to benefit from a chef’s 30 years of experience in just two minutes.

On Pace

On Highway M-60, where it winds past scenic lakes and lush farmland in St. Joseph County, sits a dynamic manufacturer of high-profile parts for the automotive, marine, agricultural, entertainment, and industrial sectors.

Revved-up auto enthusiasts readily seek out its products such as covers for the superchargers on General Motors’ Corvette, Camaro, and Cadillac supercars, and superchargers for Roush Racing that power the Ford Mustang and Raptor.

Outside the Box

EDUCATION

Western Michigan University (WMU)

Graphic and Printing Science, B.B.S. ’16

HOMETOWN

Sylvan Lake, MI

EMPLOYMENT

Material Management Analyst,

Graphic Packaging International

Learning by Design

HOMETOWN
Chicago, IL

EDUCATION
Western Michigan University (WMU)
Engineering Technology Major; Mathematics Minor

Expected Graduation: Spring 2020

POSITION

Product Design Intern at Fabri-Kal Corporation

How ‘Bout These Apples?

As the last few weeks of summer pass by, it’s time to start thinking of cozier thoughts and crunching leaves.

This means trips to the apple orchard, hayrides, donuts, and apple cider for many Michiganders. Although apple orchards are commonly thought of as simply a fall tourist destination, they have more to offer the state throughout the year than you might think. Regional cideries, like West Michigan’s Vander Mill, depend on local orchards to supply them with large quantities of quality fruit for year-round cider production.

LEADER2LEADER: Jon Rumohr and Jim Ritsema

WHAT IS YOUR MOST IMPORTANT ROLE AS A LEADER?

JIM RITSEMA: A leader needs to establish a vision for the organization and then get out of the way to let others do their job to achieve that vision. Along the way, they have to stay available for coaching and mentoring.

JON RUMOHR: The most important role I have as a leader is to be a facilitator for my team, making sure that they have the resources necessary to be successful. Those resources might be physical or mental—a leader has to provide both.

WHAT IS THE BIGGEST CHALLENGE THAT YOU SEE FACING LEADERS TODAY?

JIM: Managing expectations. We live in a time where everyone gets everything they want right away from the internet. Some of the things we do in leadership don’t happen right away.
If you’re changing the culture or even a vision, it’s not going
to happen overnight.

JON: The biggest challenge today is time. Everyone has some form of technology on them wherever they go. Whether it’s from your iPhone or iWatch, you’re always getting a media blast. It makes it a constant challenge to manage time efficiently and put people first.

HOW DID I GET HERE? – Kit Snyder

1956 | BORN IN COLDWATER, MI
I have lived my entire life in Michigan. I was raised on a 40-acre farm outside Coldwater. Every evening, my family would sit together at our dining room table, and everything we ate for dinner came from the farm. We grew everything and stored it in our fruit cellar. The farm’s main purpose, however, wasto raise horses. Growing up, I fell off a horse before I fell off a bike. We would often go to horse shows to train these animals so they would be friendly enough to sell to families. When one was sold, we would get another and start over; we had about one dozen horses at any given time.

1974 | GRADUATED COLDWATER HIGH SCHOOL
When I was at Coldwater High School, I was on the football team, wrestled, and played as many sports as I could. Neither of my parents went to high school when they were young, so when I approached graduation, I didn’t have much of a career plan. That is, until my senior year, when I befriended a banker. He was a terrific role model for me, and I quickly decided that I would like to have a job like his someday.

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