published on February 3, 2017 - 4:34 AM
Written by The Business Journal Staff


Dave Johnson, director of center operations for National University in Fresno and an adjunct professor, has been awarded the “Persona Ilustre de la Republica Oriental del Uruguay.” The award from Uruguay’s Armada Commander General is in recognition of Johnson’s self-defense training for law enforcement and Master-level martial artists throughout the U.S., South America and Europe for more than 30 years. Johnson is the creator of the art of Sei Ei Do, founder of the “Hall of Masters,” the “Elite Black Belt Hall of Fame,” and is credited for developing the world’s first complete online martial arts training program. Johnson has been inducted into every major martial arts hall of fame in the world.


JTS (Johanson Transportation Service), a leading third-party supply chain solutions provider, announced that Claudia Araiza has been hired as logistics coordinator in the non-perishable freight division in Fresno. Her role includes working with customers to coordinate freight orders and communicating with carriers to verify loads have been delivered on time and in good condition. Araiza attends Fresno City College with plans to transfer to Fresno State this summer. She worked in sales in the retail industry for four years before joining JTS and switching her career path to logistics.


Karen Bradley, CPA joins Tamiyasu, Smith, Horn and Braun, a professional corporation, with more than 14 years of extensive government compliance competency and 21-plus years of audit, consulting and financial control expertise in public accounting.

With more than 30 years of experience in public accounting, Christina Wyneken, CPA, MST, is proud to join Tamiyasu, Smith, Horn and Braun. She has an extensive background in individual and entity taxation, including multi-state and consolidated returns, with expertise in businesses involved in agribusiness, manufacturing, retail, professional services, and community benefit organizations.

Jon Bueno, the director of community partnership for the Visalia Rawhide, has been selected as the new director of partnership development for the Visalia Chamber of Commerce. Bueno has been with the Visalia Rawhide since June 2013.


Big Valley Mortgage has made two new hires for its Fresno office.  Ramon Ortiz has more than 12 years of experience in the mortgage industry, including with wholesale brokers and retail mega banks. Mario Villafana is a Fresno State graduate who started his career in the banking industry with Bank of America. He also managed his own used car dealership in Sanger.


Kim Meeker, RN, BSN, MBA, has been named Saint Agnes Medical Center’s chief nursing officer. Meeker is a seasoned nurse executive with nearly 30 years of experience. Her clinical experience is rooted in surgical services but also includes emergency, intensive care, pediatrics and maternity services. Meeker has strong leadership expertise in the areas of nursing advocacy, strategic planning, Lean process improvement, patient satisfaction and educational development.

Family HealthCare Network (FHCN) is pleased to announce the addition of Carrie Woods, FNP to its provider team. As a nurse practitioner, Woods is now accepting patients at FHCN’s Porterville Health Center. FHCN is also pleased to announce the addition of Loree Little, PhD and Kelsey Henschel, PA-C to its provider team. Dr. Little and Henschel are now offering services in behavioral health and women’s health services to patients in the Visalia community. FHCN also announced the addition of Mandeep Kaur, DDS, Ana Marie Grajo, FNP, and Maria Bugarin, PA-C to its provider team. Dr. Kaur is now accepting patients for dental services, and Grajo, and Bugarin are now accepting patients for family medicine services at Family HealthCare Network’s Hanford Health Center located at 329 West 8th St. Suite 101 in Hanford.


Faith Sidlow, an assistant professor in the media, communications and journalism department at Fresno State, won an award for Best News Special for her Central Valley Honor Flight documentary that aired on KFSR. The Radio & Television News Association of Southern California bestowed the award during its Golden Mike Awards Jan. 28 in Hollywood. Sidlow traveled to Washington, D.C., with 65 World War II and Korean War veterans from the Central Valley last summer and produced a documentary to tell their story. Sidlow earned her master’s degree from the MCJ Department in 2008.


Fresno Convention & Entertainment Center Director of Finance Lyn Higginson has been elected as the National Alliance on Mental Illness Fresno treasurer for 2017. Higginson will also serve on NAMI’s executive board for a two-year term.

The Fresno County Transportation Authority — responsible for the programs and projects funded by the 20-year Measure C expenditure plan — has selected a new executive director. Mike Leonardo, a Fresno State graduate, most recently served as a senior engineering manager with Parson Brinckerhoff working on the California high-speed rail project.

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