Lt. Gov. Mark Darr’s press secretary is leaving her post, the Arkansas Advanced Energy Association recognizes state lawmakers, an Arvest Mortgage banker receives a national award, and the University of Arkansas reorganizes its financial aid division.

LOWE LEAVING LT. GOVERNOR’S OFFICE
Sarah Beth Lowe will be leaving Lt. Governor Mark Darr’s office for a position in the private sector at the end of the month. Lowe has served as the Communications Director in the office since January of 2011.

Lowe will be joining Worldstrides Capstone out of Charlottesville, Virginia in their Global Meetings Practice. She will continue to be based in Little Rock where she resides with her husband and two sons. Darr will announce Lowe’s replacement soon, according to an office press release.

AAEA LAUDS LEGISLATORS
The Arkansas Advanced Energy Association (AAEA) will recognize five Arkansas legislators as “Champions of Advanced Energy” for their work on energy issues in the recently completed legislative session.

The legislators will receive an AAEA “Champions of Advanced Energy” award at a reception in Little Rock on June 19, 2013.

The five legislators are Senators David Johnson (D-Little Rock) and Larry Teague (D-Nashville), Representatives Jonathan Barnett (R-Siloam Springs), Greg Leding (D-Fayetteville) and Lane Jean (R-Magnolia).

During the recent legislative session, AAEA members worked with these legislators to enact several bills that will expand advanced energy opportunities and create jobs across Arkansas. Some of those bills include:

  • The PACE Act (SB 640)
  • Amendments to the Guaranteed Energy Cost Savings Act (SB 340)
  • Authorization for state agencies to issue energy efficiency improvement bonds (SB824)
  • Clean Burning Motor Fuels Development Act (SB792)

The AAEA will also recognize a bipartisan group of nine legislators as “Friends of Advanced Energy.” They are: Sen. Linda Chesterfield (D-Little Rock) Co-Chairwoman of the Joint Energy Committee; Sen. Uvalde Lindsey (D-Fayetteville); Sen. Jon Woods (R-Springdale); Sen. David Wyatt (D-Batesville); Rep. David Branscum (R-Marshall), Co-Chairman of the Joint Energy Committee; Rep. James McLean (D-Batesville); Rep. Stephen Meeks (R-Greenbrier); Rep. Mark Perry (R-Jacksonville); and Rep. Warwick Sabin (D-Little Rock).

The Arkansas Advanced Energy Association is a business group dedicated to growing Arkansas’s economy by expanding the state’s energy workforce and manufacturing base.

ARVEST’S WHITE RECEIVES MORTGAGE AWARD
G. Todd White, CMB, Senior Vice President & Loan Production Manager for Arvest Mortgage Co. has received the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) Burton C. Wood Legislative Service Award.

The award is given annually to an MBA member employee in recognition of sustained superior service to the association and the real-estate finance industry as a whole. It was presented at MBA’s 2013 National Policy Conference in Washington, D.C.

White is a certified mortgage banker (CMB) and past president of both the Arkansas Mortgage Bankers Association and the Northwest Arkansas Mortgage Bankers Association. He was named Arkansas Mortgage Banker of the Year in 2012. He started in the mortgage business in 1985 and has been with Arvest Mortgage Co. for over 20 years.

In 2012, Arvest Mortgage Co. had a record-breaking year, originating more than 17,000 mortgage loans – both refinance loans and purchase money loans – totaling $2.56 billion, the first time for the company to ever surpass the $2 billion mark.

UA PROMOTES IN FINANCIAL AID DIVISION
The University of Arkansas Enrollment Services division announced a new leadership team:

Wendy Stouffer, who has been serving as interim director of financial aid, will incorporate those duties into her current position as executive director of academic scholarships and financial aid.

Phillip Blevins, associate director of financial aid, has been promoted to senior associate director of financial aid and academic scholarships.

Garrick Hildebrand, associate director of academic scholarships, has been promoted to senior associate director of academic scholarships and financial aid.

“These appointments will create expertise in scholarships and financial aid across the board, allowing students to seek advice on scholarships and aid in one place, at one time,” said Suzanne McCray, vice provost for enrollment and dean of admissions. “This team has already begun cross-training and planning procedural changes to enhance their services to prospective students, current students, and colleagues across campus.”

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