It’s Your Business news — recently hired, retired, promoted in Topeka
Retiring & Hiring
The Kansas Department of Health and Environment recently welcomed Matt Lara to its team. Lara will serve as KDHE’s new communications director. In this role, Lara will be responsible for KDHE’s communications efforts, including media relations. Lara previously worked as the public relations specialist for Stormont Vail Health. Before joining Stormont, Lara worked at the Greater Topeka Partnership.
Longtime state employee and Kansas Public Employees Retirement System staff member Connie Gardner, an accounting specialist, retired Aug. 20, following more than 31 years of public service. She began her career at the Kansas Department of Health and Environment in March 1990. Gardner joined the KPERS team in April 1992 as an office assistant in the Benefits and Member Services Division. She received four promotions during her tenure and will retire as an accounting specialist in the Fiscal Services Division. She has been a helpful resource to KPERS employers and staff members. KPERS congratulates Gardner on her retirement and wishes her the best as she starts the next chapter of her life.
Awards, Honors & Recognition
The Kansas Hospital Association recently announced Bob Page, president and CEO of The University of Kansas Health System, is the recipient of 2021 Charles S. Billings Award. The Charles S. Billings Award, named after the association’s first president, was created in 1971 to recognize distinguished service and outstanding contributions to the field of health care in Kansas. The Kansas Hospital Association reserves this award for those who have shown their commitment, leadership and dedication to that noble pursuit. Page, the 42nd recipient of this award, has demonstrated these qualities during his 40-year health care career.
John H. Hutton, managing partner of the Topeka law firm Henson, Hutton, Mudrick, Gragson & Vogelsberg LLP, was recently selected by his peers for inclusion in the 28th edition of The Best Lawyers in America 2022. He was honored for his work in real estate law, construction law, banking and finance law, and commercial litigation. Hutton earned his undergraduate and juris doctor degrees from the University of Kansas.
Seven lawyers from Goodell, Stratton, Edmonds & Palmer LLP were recognized in The Best Lawyers in America 2022 edition. N. Larry Bork was recognized in the following categories: Lawyer of the Year for Personal Injury Litigation — Defendants in Topeka, Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants, Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants, and Lawyer of the Year.
• Miranda K. Carmona was recognized in The Best Lawyers in America 2022 edition in the category of Trusts and Estates.
• Susan L. Mauch was recognized in The Best Lawyers in America 2022 edition in the category of Litigation — Labor and Employment.
• David P. O’Neal was recognized in The Best Lawyers in America 2022 edition in the categories Medical Malpractice Law — Defendants and Personal Injury Litigation — Defendants.
• Patrick M. Salsbury was recognized in The Best Lawyers in America 2022 edition in the category of Workers’ Compensation Law — Employers.
• Cynthia J. Sheppeard was recognized in The Best Lawyers in America 2022 edition in the category of Product Liability Litigation — Defendants.
• Timothy A. Shultz was recognized in The Best Lawyers in America 2022 edition in the category of Employment Law — Management.
ENR Midwest, an affiliate of Engineering News-Record, has named regional firm McCownGordon Construction the top construction firm in the state of Kansas in 2021. The ranking is based on the total construction value of work the company completed in the state in 2020. McCownGordon is one of the largest construction firms in the area and has offices in Kansas and Missouri. It is working on projects across the state, including in Topeka, Manhattan, Wichita, Great Bend, Concordia, Emporia, Olathe, Overland Park and elsewhere.
The Kansas Department of Transportation recently expressed appreciation for the following Topeka-area employees celebrating service anniversaries in September. Leonel Alvarado, an engineering technician specialist in Rossville, and Joseph Beilman, an analytical chemist in Topeka, are each celebrating 30 years with KDOT. Ramona Taylor, an administrative assistant in Topeka, celebrates 20 years with KDOT. And Marvin Thomas, an equipment operator in Auburn, will celebrate 10 years with the department.