Franklin Health adds Rice to medical staff

Dr. David Rice has joined the medical staff of Franklin Health effective Nov. 1, according to Franklin Memorial Hospital. Rice has been in private practice in Farmington since 2011.

The name of Rice’s practice has changed to Franklin Health Intown Medicine, but it will remain at 107 Box Shop Hill in Farmington.

Rice is a board-certified internist with more than 20 years of experience. His medical career started in Texas, where he practiced extensively in hospital and office settings. He went to Farmington in 2007 when he joined Pine Tree Internal Medicine, practicing there for four years before establishing his private practice on Box Shop Hill.

Augusta law firm draws national accolade

U.S. News & World Report and Best Lawyers have named Kozak & Gayer, P.A., as a 2017 Best Law Firm for Health Care Law and Administrative/Regulatory Law, according to a news release from the Augusta firm.

The honor recognizes the firm as among the nation’s best in the practice of health care and administrative and regulatory law. Kozak & Gayer has been recognized as a Tier One Best Law Firm since the inception of this honor in 2010.

With offices in Augusta and Salida, Colorado, Kozak & Gayer is Maine’s only law firm practicing exclusively in health care law.

County Seat Realty hires new sales associate

County Seat Realty, at 186 Main St. in Farmington, has hired Gia Charles as a new sales associate, according to a company news release.

Charles recently graduated from the University of Maine at Farmington with a degree in English and a minor in international and global studies. Charles, who grew up in Bath, will focus on buying and selling homes in western Maine, according to the release.

Charles and her husband, Jake, own a multifamily property in Farmington. She previously worked at the Homestead Bakery and Tuck’s Ale House.

Waterville consulting firm awards grants

Jennifer Kierstead Consulting, of Waterville, recently announced $533,433 in grant awards to clients in Maine and New Jersey.

An award of $250,000 from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Value-Added Producer Grant program was made to Avena Botanicals, based in Rockport. Avena will use the funding to assist with personnel, processing and marketing costs to increase sales of its organic, herbal products.

In addition, an award of $250,000 from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs was made to the United States Rowing Association, based in Princeton, New Jersey, for providing adaptive rowing programs for veterans with disabilities at USRowing member clubs throughout the country. Both indoor and outdoor rowing programs have multiple mental and physical benefits for veterans with disabilities.

Employee handbooks topic of HR group’s workshop

The Central Maine Human Resource Association will hold its monthly meeting Nov. 15 at the Carriage House in Lewiston, with Deb Whitworth of HR Studio Group talking about “Creating an Employee Handbook,” according to a news release from the association.

In the workshop, attendees will receive a basic table of contents outline as well as participate in a discussion about why certain policies are necessary. The discussion will cover handbook tone as well as what shouldn’t be included in an employee handbook.

Doors open at 7:30 a.m.; the program ends at 9:30 a.m. Register at Questions about membership should be directed to Cindy Letourneau or Lori McRae at [email protected]

Mattress Firm accepting donations to help foster children

The Mattress Firm store in Augusta is among many nationwide that are taking part in a year-round company effort to help foster children.

Participating stores accept donations of clothing, pajamas, shoes, school supplies and holiday gifts. They also collect money to help foster children join extracurricular activities such as music lessons, team sports, gymnastics lessons and summer camp, according to a news release from the company.

Donations are distributed to local nonprofit organizations and matched with foster children in need.

Mattress Firm Foster Kids through Ticket To Dream Foundation is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization.

Embden farm reaps recognition for its milk quality

Piper Farm LLC, operated by Lowell and Karen Piper and Matthew and Marsha Hamilton, of Embden, was one of 10 top members recognized for producing high-quality milk during the past year at the Dairy Farmers of America’s recent Northeast Area Leadership Conference, held Oct. 11-12 at the Holiday Inn in Liverpool, N.Y.

For more than 30 years, the Milk Quality Management Award Program has recognized members for high quality. The quality is determined by maintaining a specified somatic cell count every month of the year for a yearly production category. The award demonstrates a commitment to exceptional herd care as well as excellent maintenance practices.

Camden National seeks support for homeless shelters

In conjunction with its [email protected] initiative, Camden National Bank has launched a promotion aimed at increasing support for local homeless shelters in Maine in honor of National Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week, which is Nov. 12-20.

On Saturday, Nov. 12, customers are encouraged to use their debit cards to earn money for area shelters. For every two purchases made, the bank has pledged to donate $1 through its [email protected] program, with a total commitment up to $20,000.

Through the community-based, statewide [email protected] program, for every home Camden National Bank finances, $100 is donated to a homeless shelter in the community of the new homeowner, and in the homeowner’s name. In 2015, Camden National Bank financed 442 new home purchases and raised $44,200 for Maine’s homeless shelters, and the program is on track to exceed that amount in 2016. As of September, the bank had donated more than $50,000 through [email protected] this year.

Compiled from contributed releases

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