How does your work place celebrate Christmas? Tell us your stories

This year the editorial department at the Nevada Appeal had a Christmas tree and a gift exchange. I got a book by Gloria Steinem and a Russian record. No, I don't own a record player. Yes, I remember what one looks like.

We even decorated this year, which is quite an achievement for a group of editors and reporters. I didn't help, of course, because I'm not really a festive person.

Some of my co-workers are religious, some are not. Our common bond is that everyone celebrates Christmas in some form. Sending cards. Buying a present. Eating turkey.

Dec. 25 is a holiday that the non-religious can honor for its values: generosity, love and "good will toward all men and women." In some cases, that hasn't been extended to certain corporations that try and make the Christmas season inclusive to all religions, or the secular.

But some corporations are more than willing to talk about religion. Bible, prayer groups and workplace ministries are growing in companies, including many Fortune 500 Companies. For example, In-N-Out Burger, the California-based fast-food chain, has Bible verses on its food/beverage packaging.

How does your work place celebrate Christmas? Is faith a large part of your environment? Does your work encourage religious activities? Please call me at 881-1212 or e-mail me your holiday stories, the good and the bad. The story will run in a future edition of the Appeal.

In January, Metal Solutions, 1744 Forest Way, will install a new metal milling operation and turn center.

The $160,000 milling machines will be operated by two employees. Shop owner Mike Castonguay said the shop will add a swing shift. He also purchased a $15,000 coordinate measuring machine for precision measurements.

"It'll make our whole scope even greater. The two machines will increase our ability to produce a larger spectrum of metal products for the aerospace industry. Business will increase over a year by about 60 percent."

Metal Solutions, in Mound House, is a subcontractor for Boeing and Barry Controls, he said. Metal Solutions also makes custom flower boxes from powder-coated aluminum. The product will be featured on the home shopping channel QVC by March.

Gearing up for its third year in business, 1-800-Got-Junk? owner Don Bruce added a new truck dedicated to servicing commercial businesses in Northern Nevada.

"We've seen tremendous growth for our service in the commercial market," Bruce said. "We have been working closely with Realtors and property managers and plan to focus our efforts in these markets in the coming year."

The junk removal service is also planning to increase its share in the current construction boom, and work closely with local builders and remodeling contractors to provide cleanup solutions for construction waste.

Syncon Homes recently hired Kim Kamholz as sales manager. In his most recent position, Kamholz spent two years as general manager for a custom home builder. His background also includes 14 years in sales with QSP, Inc., the fundraising division of Readers Digest, as well as seven years as an investment advisor.

Kamholz earned his bachelor's degree in business administration from the University of Minnesota. He and his wife, Carol, have three children, two of whom attend Douglas High School.

Syncon Homes has developed homes in Douglas County and Northern Nevada since 1989. Carol Kiel, director of sales and marketing at Syncon Homes, said Kamholz is a welcome addition to their team.

"With Syncon Homes' tremendous growth, it's vital to have a sales manager that offers a depth of experiences and strong leadership abilities," said Kiel. "Kim Kamholz will be an asset to Syncon Homes, and we're very excited to have him join our family."

For further information, contact Carol Kiel at Syncon Homes at 783-0999.

Builders Choice, of Silver Springs, was one of three new companies in Northern Nevada to receive a financial incentive from the Nevada Commission on Economic Development.

Eclipse Design and Materials, Inc.; Builders Choice and InfoGenesis, Inc. were awarded more than $200,000 in incentives at its December commission meeting.

Builders Choice manufactures wood roofs and floor trusses for residential and commercial buildings. Company officials selected Silver Springs as the site for its new state-of-the-art wood truss manufacturing facility. Predicted to bring more than 300 new jobs to Lyon County within a few years, Builders Choice will open their 142,000 square foot building and 7,000 square foot shop on 29 acres of land in the spring.

"We are a family oriented business and the family housing here is more affordable for our employees than in California," said Don Ogden, owner of Builders Choice. "We have also found the Nevada is a business friendly environment."

The Historic Fourth Ward School Foundation received a $8,000 Rural Tourism Grant for its exhibit "Forever Free: Abraham Lincoln's Journey to Emancipation."

The Nevada Commission on Tourism approved recently about $700,000 in grants to help rural communities market and promote attractions and events that draw visitors.

The Economic Development Authority of Western Nevada hired Sarah Woodman as investor development programs manager, Rae McElroy as investor development account manager and Rachel Kiserow as investor development coordinator.

Granite Construction Co. was named a recipient of Southwest Contractor magazine's "Best of 2005" awards program for two Northern Nevada projects. The annual competition recognizes construction and design excellence in Arizona, Nevada and New Mexico. Granite was honored Dec. 15 at the Renaissance Las Vegas Hotel in the categories of Engineering Design Project for the Virginia & Truckee Railway, and Transportation Project for the Reno Transportation Rail Access Corridor.

"These projects have been great contributions to Northern Nevada and Granite is proud to have been a part of them," said Rod Cooper, branch manager of Granite's Nevada operations.

The Reno-Tahoe chapter of the American Marketing Association was recently recognized by the AMA's international headquarters as the fastest growing chapter in the world for the third consecutive time.

This award was given to the Reno-Tahoe AMA in recognition for their performance in the fall membership drive, where the chapter had the largest percentage growth, 17 percent, of all international chapters of the AMA. The chapter is one of only three chapters in the world to receive this award three times in a row. The chapter will receive a check for $1,000 in recognition of their efforts.

Overall, the fall membership drive brought in 18 new members to the chapter, which now has 130 members total.

-- Contact reporter Becky Bosshart at or 881-1212.


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