Newton Sears Hometown Store supports food driveSears Hometown Stores plan to hand out more than savings this holiday season. Select Sears Hometown Stores across the United States are collecting non-perishable food items to donate to local charities in their communities. Customers who live in Harvey County are encouraged to stop by the Sears Hometown Store at 505 N. Poplar in Newton and drop off items now through Dec. 29. Each person who donates a food item will receive $5 off their purchase of $50 (Note: Offer for $5 off $50 or more purchases is valid one time per customer). “The holidays can be a difficult time of year for so many. Together with our customers, we are working to collect items for the food drive to give back to those in our communities who are less fortunate,” said Erica Edwards, general manager. “We are grateful for the support we have received from the Harvey County residents and hope that this food drive makes a difference in their lives.” For more information, customers can speak with local store owners about Sears Hometown Stores’ food drive program this holiday season, or to find a Hometown Store, visit www.searshometownstores.com.Neufeld of North Newton named ACM senior memberDr. Bob Neufeld of North Newton was recently named an ACM senior member, a member grade recognizing ACM professional members with at least 10 years of professional experience and five years of continuous professional membership who have demonstrated performance that sets them apart from their peers. ACM is widely recognized as the premier membership organization for computing professionals. Neufeld is a long-time member of ACM and is active in SIGCSE, the ACM Special Interest Group for Computer Science Education. He also continues to serve on the national board of CCSC, the Consortium for Computing Sciences, having completed two years as president and board chair in July. CCSC sponsors 10 regional conferences across the United States each year. These conferences support faculty in effective use of computing in smaller institutions of higher learning. Dr. Neufeld is Professor Emeritus of Computer Science at McPherson College.Stahl Cox named ‘outstanding woman in business’Karen Stahl Cox of rural Sedgwick was recently named as one of Wichita’s “Outstanding Women in Business” by the Wichita Business Journal. She is chief operating officer of ProviDRs Care, a preferred provider organization owned by the Medical Society of Sedgwick County. Stahl Cox is a graduate of Newton High School and daughter of Edward and Alice Stahl of rural Sedgwick.Successful CPA examination candidates announcedTOPEKA — The Kansas Board of Accountancy has announced 33 candidates successfully passed the computerized examination in the July/August 2012 exam window. As of October 2012, more than 11,000 individuals have been issued CPA certificates, of which about 3,800 have active permits to practice. Passage of the national examination is the first step to becoming a certified public accountant. To be eligible to receive a permit to practice, an experience requirement must first be met. Local candidates include Kimberly Kendall of McPherson; Dustin Redger of Newton; and Stacy White of Wellington. For more information concerning the computerized examination, visit the Board of Accountancy’s website at www.ksboa.org.Local museums host conference at Meridian CenterOn Oct. 24 through 26, the Harvey County Historical Museum, Kansas Sports Museum and Hall of Fame, and Kauffman Museum were partners hosting the annual Kansas Museums Association conference in Newton. More than 150 museum professionals from across the state participated. Rachel Pannabecker, Kauffman Museum director, said, “The Meridian Center was the perfect size for our meeting, with break-out rooms for four simultaneous sessions.” Kauffman Museum and Flint Hills Design of North Newton co-sponsored a pre-conference workshop on exhibit design and fabrication. Dr. Nate Regier of Next Element Consulting LLC, Newton, provided the Friday morning keynote presentation on workplace dynamics. The three local museums hosted an opening night progressive reception with transportation support from the Newton Convention & Visitors Bureau.1,300 hospital leaders attend recent KHA conventionThe Kansas Hospital Association’s 2012 Annual Convention and Trade Show, Winning Strategies, was Nov. 15 through 16 at the Sheraton Overland Park and Overland Park Convention Center. The convention provided hospital leaders with strategies to meet today’s health care challenges in the changing health care arena. In addition to 1,300 hospital and health care leaders, more than 200 exhibitors participated in the annual trade show. Jim Abbott, Olympian and a one-handed pitcher, presented the keynote session Nov. 15, followed by Joe Flower, author of “Healthcare Beyond Reform: Doing It Right for Half the Cost.” Attendees also heard from Stuart Rothenberg about the recent election and learned about creating the ultimate customer service experience from Scott Deming. The Kansas Hospital Association is a not-for-profit association of health care provider organizations and individuals committed to the health improvement of their communities. KHA membership includes 212 member facilities, of which 126 are full-service community hospitals.