Carmel in brief — December 24, 2019


New director at CEF – Jennifer Penix will become the executive director of the Carmel Education Foundation on Jan. 2, 2020. She will replace retiring co-executive directors Barbara Danquist and Stephanie McDonald, who led CEF for seven years. Penix previously served as the development and special events manager for Junior Achievement of Central Indiana.

No-Shave November donation – The Carmel Police Dept. presented $4,842.94 raised through this year’s No-Shave November campaign donations to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. Chief Jim Barlow relaxed the department’s grooming standards regarding facial hair for the 85 employees that made monetary donations. Contributions were also made by Integrity Automotive, family members and friends of CPD employees, and other members of the community. The campaign concluded with The Great Shave Off event at Main Street Barber Shop. 

Lugar series – Cathy Boggs of Carmel has been selected for the 30th class of the Richard G. Lugar Excellence in Public Service Series. The series is a not-for-profit women’s leadership development program designed to increase the preparation, influence and number of Republican women in local, state and national elective and appointive offices. For more information, visit

Talk to a lawyer – Hoosiers needing answers to legal questions are invited to a free legal consultation during the Indiana State Bar Association’s annual Talk to a Lawyer Today on Jan. 20, 2020. Consultations are provided in-person at numerous statewide locations or via the hotline from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at 800-266-2581. Members of the ISBA donate their time for this once-a-year program as a tribute to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Walk-in locations will be published at

Writing competition – Senior living community The Stratford is accepting applicants for its annual Silver Pen Writing Competition. The competition will award three local high school seniors with scholarships ranging from $500 to $2,500. Participants are required to submit an essay with a minimum of 1,000 words, application form and transcript. Entries must be received by Feb. 14, 2020. Learn more at

Holiday lights recycling – Carmel Clay Schools Green Teams, City of Carmel Utilities, Tech Recyclers and White’s Ace Hardware are working together to offer a Holiday Light Recycling Drive. Used holiday lights may be recycled through Jan. 20 at White’s Ace Hardware, 731 S. Range Line Road, or at Carmel schools through Jan. 10. For more information about the recycling program call 317-571-2673.

Governor makes appointments – Gov. Eric Holcomb has appointed Allison Karns of Carmel to serve as chair of the Governor’s Residence Commission. Karns is the director of government relations at Allison Transmission. The governor also appointed Jim Isch of Carmel to serve as treasurer of the White River State Park Development Commission.

Indiana Humanities – State Rep. Jerry Torr of Carmel has been appointed to the Indiana Humanities board of directors. Indiana Humanities is a statewide nonprofit that encourages Hoosiers to think, read and talk by participating in humanities programs and activities. The organization is in the midst of a two-year INseparable initiative, which explores real and perceived differences among urban, suburban and rural Hoosiers.

Civil War Roundtable – The Hamilton County Civil War Roundtable will feature guest speaker Craig Dunn, a Carmel resident, at its Jan. 8 meeting at Carmel City Hall, 1 Civic Square. Dunn will speak on “Iron Men, Iron Will, The Nineteenth Indiana of the Iron Brigade.” Dunn is a collector of more than 3,000 original Indiana Civil War photographs of soldiers and is a political columnist for Howey Politics Indiana. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. with the program beginning at 7 p.m. The event is open to the public. There is no cost to attend.

Heirbrandt re-elected VP – Hamilton County Commissioner Mark Heirbrandt was once again elected vice president of the Indiana Association of County Commissioners East Central District during its annual conference.  In his role, Heirbrandt will represent elected county commissioners in the East Central district of the state, which includes the following counties: Delaware, Fayette, Franklin, Hamilton, Hancock, Henry, Johnson, Madison, Marion, Randolph, Rush, Shelby, Tipton, Union and Wayne.

Arm-Knit-In – The Carmel Clay Public Library will hold the Arm-Knit-In day of service from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Jan. 20 in the program room. The event for teens in grades six through 12 will provide an opportunity to make scarves for kids and teens in need. Materials will be provided, but participants may bring their own yarn. For more information contact the library at 317-814-3900.

Winter Market – The Carmel Winter Market is under way from 9 a.m. to noon Saturdays at the Wire Factory, 510 3rd Ave. SW. Vendor offerings include flavored oils, homemade noodles, baked goods and much more. Learn more at

Best and Brightest – Junior Achievement of Central Indiana is seeking nominations for the 16th annual Indy’s Best and Brightest event, which will honor 100 of central Indiana’s most outstanding young professionals, age 40 and under, in 10 different industry categories. Ten finalists from each category will be chosen by a selection committee and announced in September. One winner from each category will be announced during the event on March 11, 2020, at Hilbert Circle Theatre downtown Indianapolis. Visit to submit a nomination through Nov. 25.

Governor’s Fellowship – Applications will be accepted through Feb. 28 for the 2020-2021 Governor’s Fellowship, a highly selective experience in Indiana state government that places fellows in various state agencies on a rotating basis throughout the year. The program is open to college graduates who receive their bachelor’s degrees in either the fall 2019 or spring 2020. Fellows are paid, full-time employees who participate in the day-to-day activities of state government. Learn more and apply at

Newcomers Club – Newcomers Club of Carmel, a nonprofit social club, connects its members with friends, engages in fun activities and explores the community. Monthly activities include a welcome coffee, a luncheon event and 32 interest group meetings. Membership represents Carmel, Westfield, Fishers, Noblesville, Zionsville and Indianapolis. For more, visit or call 317-564-8349.

Home sale prices decrease – While Carmel home sale prices decreased, they also left the market more quickly than November 2018. According to F.C. Tucker Company, the November 2019 average sale price for homes in Carmel was $381,368, an 8.4 percent decrease from this time last year. The average price per square foot also decreased slightly to $147.97, a .2 percent decrease compared to November 2018. Carmel homes spent less time on the market, selling in an average of 40 days, 27.3 percent faster than November of last year.

Rize coming to Carmel – Rize, a Cunningham Restaurant Group breakfast and lunch bistro, will open at Gateway Plaza at 12955 Old Meridian St. in summer 2020. Rize will join CRG’s BRU Burger Bar Carmel location at the same property. Current tenants of the plaza that will remain include BRU Burger Bar, Burn Boot Camp, Halo Salon, Team Rehab and A Cut Above Catering.

Management committee – Brian Burdick of Carmel has been elected to Barnes & Thornburg’s management committee. The committee will provide leadership to the firm through 2020.

Real Mechanical acquired – GEMCO Constructors, an Indianapolis-based national mechanical, electrical and plumbing design and build sub-contractor, has acquired Carmel-based Real Mechanical, Inc. in a private transaction. The entire Real Mechanical employee base will remain intact and become a part of the growing GEMCO workforce. Learn more at

CrossCountry makes hires – CrossCountry Mortgage has added two team members at the company’s growing Midwest branch in Carmel. Seth Hensley joins the branch as a loan originator. His goal is to guide new homebuyers through the mortgage process in a way that protects them and eliminates common mistakes. Adolphus Fifer is the new business development specialist who will work with the branch’s loan originators to nurture and cultivate their growing client and referral base.

Firm adds attorney – Hollingsworth Roberts Means has added attorney Michelle Baldwin Skaggs to its expanding law firm. With more than 20 years of professional experience, Skaggs will lead HRM’s Estate Planning & Elder Law Practice Group within HRM’s Divorce & Family Law and Business Law teams, working from the firm’s Carmel office.

Jiffy Lube honored for art – Jiffy Lube of Indiana recently received the Americans for the Arts’ national Arts and Business Partnership Award, one of only 10 U.S. companies honored and the first company in Indianapolis to receive this award. Jiffy Lube of Indiana’s “Every Part Matters” project started as a way to cover up graffiti at a local store and has progressed into partnership with the Arts Council of Indianapolis. In addition to supporting and hiring local artists, they’ve also created a new apprentice program that will give paid experience to emerging artists. Two of the murals are in Carmel.

Book drive – The Residence Inn and SpringHill Suites along with Liberty Mutual Insurance are conducting a children’s book drive through Dec. 13 to support the Child Life Program at Riley Hospital for Children at IU Health North. Books may be dropped off in the hotel lobbies or main entrance of the Liberty Mutual office on Meridian Street.

Loan originators hired – Merchants Mortgage has hired Jan Olmstead and Steve Clark as mortgage loan originators in Carmel. Olmstead brings more than 25 years of residential lending, title insurance and real estate services experience to the Merchants team. Clark, an Indianapolis native and Indiana University Bloomington graduate, returns to Central Indiana and joins the Merchants team after holding various roles in other industries. As a mortgage loan originator, he will consult with clients and prospects regarding their home borrowing needs across a variety of mortgage loan types.

Accounting firm grows – Katz, Sapper & Miller announced that Indianapolis-based Caskey & Daily, P.C. has joined the accounting and consulting firm. Caskey & Daily’s notable healthcare practice will enable KSM to expand its own healthcare practice, which serves as a provider of tax and accounting services, consulting, fair market value assessments, transactions, and valuations for the complete spectrum of healthcare organizations. Caskey & Daily will move to KSM’s Carmel office at 800 East 96th Street, Suite 500.

Hearing loss group – The newly-formed Indianapolis Chapter of the Hearing Loss Association of America holds meetings from 11 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. on the first Saturday of the month at Irvington Public Library, 5625 E. Washington St. in Indianapolis. Learn more at


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