topamax recall


The Van Wert County Courthouse

Sunday, Feb. 26, 2017


Leadercast 2017 speakers include (top row, from the left) Andy Stanley and Daniel Pink; (bottom row) Molly Fletcher and Tyler Perry. (photos submitted)

Leadercast 2017 speakers include (top row, from the left) Andy Stanley and Daniel Pink; (bottom row) Molly Fletcher and Tyler Perry. (photos submitted)

VW independent/submitted information

Leadercast is the world’s largest one-day leadership conference, broadcast LIVE from Atlanta and simulcast to hundreds of locations around the world on May 5. This year marks the 17th year of the annual leadership conference and the fourth year of the event — Leadercast Ohio West in Van Wert.

This year, six Chambers of Commerce — Van Wert, Ottawa, Paulding, Delphos, Southwestern Auglaize County, and St. Marys — will host Leadercast Ohio West.

The venue for Leadercast Ohio West is the new LifeHouse Church at 719 Fox Road in Van Wert, located in the heart of northwest and west central Ohio, as well as minutes from the Fort Wayne, Indiana, area.

The theme of this year’s conference is “Powered by Purpose.” Purpose is what defines people, drives them, and empowers them. It is the glue for an organization and the fuel for an individual. Today’s organization cannot rely on old practices. A new organization is emerging and at the center of its driving force is the igniting power of purpose:

  • Companies with ideals of improving people’s lives at the center of all they do outperform others by 400 percent
  • More than 70 percent of people consider an organization’s environmental and/or social impact when deciding where to work
  • Employees that feel they are working towards a good cause show increased productivity by up to 30 percent
  • People who are able to make a social or environmental impact on the job are more satisfied by a 2:1 ratio

Empowering their employees to achieve excellence in leadership are Leadercast Ohio West Top Tier Sponsors Vancrest Health Care Centers, The Kenn-Feld Group LLC, Central Insurance Companies, Cooper Farms, Van Wert County Hospital, and Avangrid Renewables.

“We appreciate their generous support to bring this caliber of leadership development to the Northwest and West Central region of Ohio,” said Van Wert Chamber President/CEO Susan Munroe.

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POSTED: 02/25/17 at 9:13 am

Submitted information

COLUMBUS — Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine announced a settlement with a former clergyman who previously lived in Steubenville and who was accused of creating and using a charity primarily to pay for personal expenses.

Under the settlement, John Sillup of Sherman Oaks, California, agreed to dissolve his organization, the Society of Notre Dame, pay $26,519 in restitution, and a $10,000 civil fine. He also agreed not to work for or solicit for charities in Ohio and to shut down websites and social media accounts related to the organization.

Sillup claimed that the Society of Notre Dame (previously known as the Society of Our Lady of the Blessed Sacrament) was an international organization that helped child refugees, but investigators found no evidence of any programming to support child refugees and determined that Sillup used charitable assets primarily to pay for personal expenses, such as credit card bills, restaurant meals, clothing, a Lexus, and entertainment.

Sillup was incardinated in the Roman Catholic Diocese of Frejus-Toulon, France, and lived in Steubenville, , before his clerical status was withdrawn by the Catholic Church, according to an investigation by the Ohio Attorney General’s Charitable Law Section.

While in Steubenville, Sillup collected charitable contributions but allegedly used the contributions to pay for living expenses. He also sold property belonging to the Society of Notre Dame and used the funds to pay for personal expenses. After moving to California, he promoted a fundraising event to benefit child refugees, but investigators determined that the event never took place.

The attorney general filed a lawsuit accusing Sillup of multiple violations of Ohio’s charitable laws. The settlement, which resolves the lawsuit, calls for the $26,519 in restitution to be redistributed for the charitable purpose of helping child refugees.

Suspected charitable fraud should be reported to the Ohio Attorney General’s Office at www.OhioAttorneyGeneral.gov or 800.282.0515.

POSTED: 02/25/17 at 8:54 am. FILED UNDER: News

Submitted information

Van Wert Lodge 1197, Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, has selected Joel Germann, a senior at Crestview High School, and Aliana Alvarez, a senior at Van Wert High School, as recipients of the Students of the Month for February.

Students are nominated by their high schools to receive this award.  Each Student of the Month receives a monetary donation along with a certificate from the Van Wert Elks Lodge 1197 with the possibility to be named the Student of the Year. Students are judged on the basis of multiple achievements — volunteerism, character, leadership, service, citizenship, and scholarship.

This program is designed to recognize outstanding young men and women for their achievements in school and community. The Elks recognize and praise those students for their accomplishments, their activities, and their contributions to society through this program.

Linda J. Stanley (left), Elks Student of the Month chair, and Aliana Alvarez. (photos submitted)

Linda J. Stanley (left), Elks Student of the Month chair, and Aliana Alvarez. (Elks photos)

Joel Germann (left) and Linda J. Stanley, Elks Student of the Month chair.

Joel Germann (left) and Linda J. Stanley, Elks Student of the Month chair.

POSTED: 02/25/17 at 8:49 am. FILED UNDER: News

Submitted information

A free kindergarten developmental readiness screening open to all with eligible children will be held at St. Mary of the Assumption Catholic School gymnasium.

Any child who will be 5 years of age by September 30 that is living in Van Wert County or the surrounding area is eligible to attend.  Screening appointments can be set up for Thursday, March 2; Tuesday, March 7; or Tuesday, March 14, between the hours of 4-6 p.m.

Call the St. Mary’s Office at 419.238.5186 between the hours of 8:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, to set up a screening appointment. Time slots are limited.

Children will be assessed using the Developmental Indicators for the Assessment of Learning, Fourth Edition (DIAL-4). The DIAL-4 program assesses children in the areas of speech and language, gross and fine motor skills, cognition, hearing, vision, self-help, and social-emotional skills. The screening process usually takes about 45 minutes to one hour.

Each child is unique; however, this assessment provides parents with an opportunity to see how their child is progressing in relationship to children of the same age. The school will have administrators on site each day to review results of with parents/guardians on the same day as the child’s screening.

Parents are encouraged to have their children screened even if they feel that they may want to hold the child out of school for another year.

POSTED: 02/25/17 at 8:45 am. FILED UNDER: News

VW independent/submitted information

Van Wert County’s Head Start preschool program is one of several such programs in the area to benefit from a grant received by its parent organization. Van Wert County will convert its existing part-day classrooms and now has two 6-hour, full-day Head Start classrooms with 40 child slots.

Federal grant money enabled the Van Wert County Head Start program  to expand. (photo submitted)

Federal grant money enabled the Van Wert County Head Start program to expand. (photo submitted)

Through an increased federal investment in quality for early childhood education, Council on Rural Services (CORS), the local Head Start program’s parent organization, is receiving an award of $915,794 in supplemental preschool funding. This is part of a $290 million nationwide expansion award announced by the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, Administration for Children and Families (HHS).

Congress allocated the new funds as a down payment toward ensuring that nearly all preschool-age children in Head Start attend programs that operate full-time as announced in the new standards that must be fully met by 2021. These new Head Start standards place higher emphasis on a vision of evidence-based, data-driven and outcomes-focused services. These new standards are a significant and positive step forward for the future of Head Start and the success of the children and families later in life.

Within the new standards, all CORS Head Start funded centers must expand minimum teaching time to 1020 hours per year. In addition to Van Wert County program improvements, the awarding of this grant enables Kids Learning Place to begin meeting this benchmark by also converting Head Start services in the following locations:

  • Auglaize County, in Wapakoneta, will convert its existing part-day classrooms and now has two 6-hour, full-day Head Start classrooms with 40 child slots.
  • Auglaize County, in St. Marys, will open two new 6-hour, full day Head Start classrooms with 36 child slots.

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POSTED: 02/24/17 at 8:23 am. FILED UNDER: News

VW independent/submitted information

The Van Wert County Foundation invites area residents to attend its 14th annual Van Wert County Young Artists Recital.

The recital will be held at 3 p.m. this Sunday, February 26, in the sanctuary of First United Methodist Church, 113 W. Central Ave. in Van Wert.

This year’s recital will feature 17 solo and ensemble performances by high school music students who attend either Crestview, Lincolnview, or Van Wert.

Vocal, instrumental, and piano music will be featured during the recital. The students performing have participated in the Ohio Music Educators District III Solo & Ensemble Contest recently held at Memorial High School in St. Marys. The student musicians were critiqued and given a rating of I (superior) to V (poor).

The students participating in the Young Artists Recital on Sunday afternoon have all been recommended by their school music teacher or private teacher because of their excellent performances.

The public is invited to attend this free event. Doors open for the public, beginning at 2 p.m. Sunday, while a reception for the public will follow the recital to honor these fine student musicians.

Shown are students from the Van Wert High School band program who will be performing during the 14 annual Van Wert County Young Artists Recital. (photo submitted)

Shown are students from the Van Wert High School band program who will be performing during the 14 annual Van Wert County Young Artists Recital. (photo submitted)

POSTED: 02/24/17 at 8:15 am. FILED UNDER: News

Submitted information

LIMA — It’s a big weekend coming up for Girl Scouts of Western Ohio: Girl Scout Cookies begin arriving by the truckload for pick-up by area volunteers. More than 2.9 million boxes will be distributed to more than 2,300 troops in 32 counties throughout western Ohio.

Girl Scout logoThere are several “Cookie Drops” scheduled in the area. At these drops, volunteers will pick up cases of cookies for their troop’s initial cookie orders, which girls will distribute to customers over the coming weeks.

Haven’t ordered Girl Scout Cookies? Don’t panic. Area residents have until March 26 to place an order through a Girl Scout they know, in person, or online via Digital Cookie.

Don’t know a Girl Scout? Girl Scout Cookie Booth sales begin March 3 and run through March 26. To find a booth in one’s community, visit gswo.org/findcookies and enter one’s zip code into the Girl Scout Cookie Finder or download the Girl Scout Cookie Finder app for iOS or Android mobile devices.

POSTED: 02/24/17 at 8:06 am. FILED UNDER: News

Submitted information

The Van Wert County General Health District will be closed Friday, March 3, in order for staff to participate in the Accreditation Summit.

The County General Health District is working towards accreditation, as required by the Ohio Health Department to guarantee future funding and advance quality and performance within public health departments.

The closure will allow health department staff to attend the summit and focus on efforts towards accreditation. The health department will address emergencies as necessary.

For more information or any questions, call 419.238.0808.

POSTED: 02/24/17 at 8:05 am. FILED UNDER: News

DAVE MOSIER/independent editor

It’s been more than seven decades since Orval Mullen served in the U.S. Army’s 4th Infantry Division – “the Ivy Division” — during World War II.

World War II veteran Orval Mullen receives medals he earned from U.S. Representative Bob Latta on Wednesday. Dave Mosier/Van Wert independent

World War II veteran Orval Mullen receives medals he earned from U.S. Representative Bob Latta on Wednesday. Dave Mosier/Van Wert independent

The local veteran, who participated in the Normandy Invasion, the Battle of the Bulge, and helped liberate the Dachau death camp, finally received the medals due him for his service during a ceremony held Wednesday at American Legion Post 178 in Van Wert.

Through the efforts of U.S. Representative Bob Latta’s office, Mullen received the decorations due him for his WW II service. The decorations included the Good Conduct Medal, Bronze Star Medal, Combat Infantryman’s Badge, American Campaign Medal, a Presidential Unit Citation, the European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal with four bronze service stars and arrowhead, a World War II Victory Medal, the Army of Occupation Medal with Germany clasp, the Belgian Fourragere, and an honorable service lapel button for World War II.

In addition, Mullen, who also celebrated his 95th birthday on Wednesday, received the Legion d’Honneur, France’s highest decoration, for his service in the European theatre of combat.

Congressman Latta was on hand to present the medals to Mullen, who he learned had never received the medals while conducting an interview with the ex-soldier for the Library of Congress’ Veterans History Project. Latta’s staff members then worked with the U.S. Army to rectify the situation.

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POSTED: 02/23/17 at 10:21 am. FILED UNDER: News

DAVE MOSIER/independent editor

U.S. Representative Bob Latta was in town on Wednesday to provide an update on the 115th Congressional legislative session.

Latta talked about President Donald Trump, noting that he has accomplished much in just five weeks in office.

“I think if you look at what he has done, especially on the regulatory side, (which) is the number one thing I’ve heard in more than 750 (constituent) meetings,” the congressman said.

U.S. Representative Bob Latta (center) poses with Van Wert independent co-owner Chris Roberts (left) and Marketing Director Dave Roach during a visit to Van Wert on Wednesday. Dave Mosier/Van Wert independent

U.S. Representative Bob Latta (center) poses with Van Wert independent co-owner Chris Roberts (left) and Marketing Director Dave Roach during a visit to Van Wert on Wednesday. Dave Mosier/Van Wert independent

Latta noted that U.S. businesses are saddled with $1.9 trillion in regulations, something the congressman is far in excess of what is needed.

“Everybody is pretty much in the same boat,” Latta said. “They just can’t keep up with this stuff.”

The congressman noted that one bank in his district with less than 10 employees will have 12 regulators in the bank next week to make sure it is following banking regulations.

“What they’re trying to do is make the small banks do the same thing as a (large) New York bank,” Latta said, noting that the small community banks didn’t cause the problems that led to the recession back in 2008.

Latta also talked about excess regulations set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, noting that, while everyone wants clean air and water, the EPA often doesn’t do cost-benefit analyses on regulations it sets, while occasionally there is no existing technology to allow people to meet a regulation.

Latta also touched on the budget, noting that Trump’s budget director, former U.S. Representative Mick Mulvaney of South Carolina, delaying efforts to make timely budget cuts.

And budget cuts need to be made, Latta said.

“The budget deficit this past year was $587 billion,” the congressman noted, adding that total will rise to approximately $1.4 trillion over the next 10 years if things remain the same as they are today. Even more important, the interest paid on the deficit, which was $240 billion this year, could be as much as $750 billion — or even $1 trillion — in 10 years, if action isn’t taken to curb spending.

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POSTED: 02/23/17 at 10:13 am. FILED UNDER: News

VW independent/submitted information

February is Career Technical Education month, and Vantage will celebrate with an open house Monday, February 27, from 5-7:30 p.m.

The open house will highlight both the high school and adult education programs and is open to the public.  “Vantage is opening up the building so everyone can see and experience what our students learn every day,” according to Vantage Community Relations Coordinator MaryJo Wilhelm. “This is a chance for prospective high school students and their parents, along with current students and parents, community members, alumni, and interested adult learners, to see what opportunities are available at Vantage.”

Vantage juniors Clay Schnipke (Ottoville), Robert Germann (Crestview), and Tyler Brecht (Continental) work as a team on the Fanuc automated material handling robot in the Industrial Mechanics lab.  Come to Open House on Monday, February 27, from 5-7:30 p.m., to see more demonstrations in all 18 career technical education labs. (Vantage photo)

Vantage juniors Clay Schnipke (Ottoville), Robert Germann (Crestview), and Tyler Brecht (Continental) work as a team on the Fanuc automated material handling robot in the Industrial Mechanics lab. Come to Open House on Monday, February 27, from 5-7:30 p.m., to see more demonstrations in all 18 career technical education labs. (Vantage photo)

Vantage students will be demonstrating skills in each lab and there will be more information about the new high school Criminal Justice program. There will also be a parent information meeting at 6 p.m. in the Community Room for parents of sophomores who are considering attending Vantage.

Career technical education allows high school students an opportunity to be work- and college ready, graduating with industry certifications and credentials, college credit, and hands-on experience in their field. For adults who are unemployed, underemployed, or looking for a career change, programs at the Ohio Technical Center provide opportunities to gain additional skills or change a career path.

“A Taste of Vantage” will again be held in the commons area during the open house. Six area restaurants and the Vantage Culinary Arts program will be offering a delicious sampling of some of their most popular cuisine. For just $5 at the door, those attending the open house can purchase a strip of six tickets. Each ticket will get the holder one food sample. All proceeds support the Vantage school-wide student activity fund.  Try some pizza from The Fort Restaurant in Fort Jennings, enjoy boneless chicken chunks in gravy from Van Wert’s Black Angus on Main, taste a pork slider from Gibson’s Barnyard BBQ in Convoy, or warm up with a cup of delicious soup from Schlotzsky’s in Van Wert.

The Vantage Culinary Arts program will be serving its fabulous homemade nacho chips and salsa. For dessert, try a mini ice cream cup from the Paulding Dairy Queen or an assortment of sweet treats and coffee from Truly D’vine Bakery in Van Wert.

Deejay Ron Burt from Magic Moment Entertainment will be the emcee for the evening and will announce the special demonstrations and activities going on throughout the building.

Sponsors include Elmco Engineering, Central Mutual Insurance Company, Carey Insurance and Financial Services, Bradley Knodel CPA, Lange Photographics, Statewide Ford, Unverferth Manufacturing, Kalida Truck Company, Straley Realty, DarkHorse Productions/Hohman Video, Northwest State Community College, Alspach-Gearhart Funeral Home & Crematory, Leland Smith Insurance Services, Integrity Ford/Dennis Recker, Shadows Athletics, Water On Wheels, and Walmart. To learn more about the open house, visit www.vantagecareercenter.com or Vantage’s Facebook page.

POSTED: 02/23/17 at 10:07 am. FILED UNDER: News