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Business - Druid City Living, Tuscaloosa's premier community newspaper. - Druid City Living, Tuscaloosa's premier community newspaper. Mon, 18 Jun 2018 13:47:37 -0500 MYOB en-gb Leadership Tuscaloosa Class of 2017-18 Graduates Leadership Tuscaloosa Class of 2017-18 Graduates

Forty-one members of the 2017-18 class of Leadership Tuscaloosa, a nine-month leadership development program, graduated at a ceremony held at Smith Hall’s Museum of Natural History May 17. 

Sponsored by the Chamber of Commerce of West Alabama and the University of Alabama System, the program is designed to make each selected participant more aware of and sensitive to the wide range of needs and opportunities in the community through shared experiences with a cross section of highly capable fellow citizens. 

Mark Sullivan, President, Synovus Bank, and a graduate of the program, served as chair for this year’s Leadership Tuscaloosa class. The Keynote speaker was Representative Bill Poole.  

The David Reynolds Spirit of Leadership Award was presented to Jennifer Naves of BBVA Compass. 

The Leadership Tuscaloosa Class is:

Scott Anders, Tuscaloosa County Commission; Charles Bailey IV, Pritchett Moore Inc.; Benjamin Bickerstaff, University of Alabama; NaTa’sha Black, Tuscaloosa News; Jon Blakeney, William Blakeney Building Co., Inc.; Tacy Bolling, University of Alabama System; Stephanie Buffaloe, Home Instead Senior Care; Brandon Chalmers, Tuscaloosa’s One Place; Elizabeth Cochrane, Cadence Bank; April Coleman, DCH Health System; Allyson Cooper, University Medical Center; Stephen Dethrage, The Tuscaloosa News; Nicole DuBose, Shelton State Community College; Amy Ford, DCH Health System; Scott Gaddy, Nucor Steel Tuscaloosa, Inc.; Kenneth Gaddy, University of Alabama; Jerran Hill, University of Alabama; June Holmes, Capstone Bank; Gloria Horton, Mercedes-Benz U.S International; Dennis Horton, BFGoodrich/Michelin; Eric Hull, Black Warrior Brewing Co.; Katie King, The University of Alabama; Madolyn Kirby, Matrix, LLC ; Christopher Lanoux, Parker Towing, Inc.; Crystal Lovorn, Resasant Bank; Joseph McAbee, McAbee Construction Inc.; Case McNeill, College Station Properties; Donna Meester, The University of Alabama; Rebecca Minder, The University of Alabama; Jennifer Naves, BBVA Compass; Scott Nichols, McAbee Construction; Susan Poole, The Westervelt Company; Jasmine Rainey, Tuscaloosa Tourism and Sports; Michael Scott, Mercedes-Benz U.S International; Edmund Sexton Jr., McAbee Construction Inc.; Jennifer Harris Sherman, Sickle Cell Disease Association; Jennifer Stripling, JamisonMoneyFarmer PC; Jennifer Taylor, City of Tuscaloosa; Zach Ward, Ward Scott Architecture; Jill White, Rosen Harwood, PA; Brian Wysock, TTL, Inc.

]]> (Super User) Business Thu, 07 Jun 2018 00:00:00 -0500
Druid City Living Business Happenings: May 2018 Druid City Living Business Happenings: May 2018

Druid City Living always wants to recognize our great local businesses. To the new businesses - welcome to town! Remember: Shop local. 

Now Open/Opening Soon 

Excelsior Staffing is now open in Tuscaloosa (3816 Palisades Drive). This full-service staffing firm offers a full suite of staffing services including temporary, temporary to permanent and direct placement. (205) 614-5388; 

Frutta Bowls has opened a second location in Tuscaloosa, at Midtown Village (1800 McFarland Blvd.). The health foods eatery serves acai, pitaya and kale bowls, along with smoothies, and more. (205) 758-1719; 

The Greasy Hands Barbershop has opened its doors in Tuscaloosa (2008 8th St.). A ribbon cutting ceremony was held on April 5. Greasy Hands offers haircuts, clean shaves, beard trims, and more. Greasy Hands also has locations in Huntsville and Florence. 

Homewood-based Real & Rosemary restaurant plans to open two locations in Tuscaloosa. The first restaurant (1530 McFarland Blvd North) was expected to open in April; the second location (2128 University Blvd.) will open this summer.  The restaurant is focused on “real food” – i.e. food free of preservatives, food dyes, and MSG.  Menu items include fresh, home-cooked vegetables, as well as roasted and grilled meats and seafood dishes.  

The Rustic Rehab is now open in Northport (4500 Highway 69 N.). An official grand opening ceremony was held on March 30. The shop specializes in furniture restoration, as well as offering farmhouse style décor and new and used furniture. (205) 330-2569 

Tuscaloosa Family Dental is now open in Hillcrest Plaza (7402 Highway 69 South, Suite H). Dr. Kimberly Parker’s practice features 3D CBCT imaging, digital x-rays, and other state-of-the-art equipment and patient care in a relaxed, comfortable environment. (205) 722-7550; 


Dr. Kenneth W. Aldridge, a local urologist and vice president for medical affairs for the DCH Health System, recently received the Garber Galbraith Medical-Political Award from the Medical Alumni Association of the University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Medicine. The award recognizes Aldridge “for outstanding service to the medical profession” in the medical-political arena. 

A new Medical Center is coming to Alberta – one that will offer a variety of different specialties, as well as general care. It will be located at the intersection of University Boulevard and Alberta Drive. Developer Mark Hearing hopes construction will begin by the end of 2018. 

Schoolyard Roots (formerly the Druid City Garden Project) has named Stephanie Reinhart as its new executive director. Reinhart received her bachelor’s degree in Outdoor Education from Ohio University and her Master’s in Health Promotion from The University of Alabama. Prior to joining the Schoolyard Roots team, she designed and managed a variety of recreation programs at the collegiate and community non-profit levels. 


The Local Roots food truck celebrated its two-year anniversary in a big way on April 28 at Government Plaza, with Alabama Roots Fest, a downtown gathering (held in conjunction with Frutta Bowls) featuring food as well as live music from Robert Randolph, Will Hoge, and Adam Hood. 

]]> (Super User) Business Tue, 29 May 2018 00:00:00 -0500
Alabama Governor Kay Ivey Speaks at Chamber’s Annual State of the State Governor Kay Ivey delivers the keynote address at Chamber in Session: State of the State in Tuscaloosa on May 15.

Alabama Governor Kay Ivey delivered the keynote address during the Chamber in Session: State of the State event, held on May 15 at the Embassy Suites in downtown Tuscaloosa.

The annual event is designed to provide Chamber of Commerce of West Alabama members with updates from key officials on public policy topics. Hundreds attended this year’s luncheon.

Governor Ivey spoke about changes she has made for the state of Alabama while she has been governor. She has worked closely with the Alabama Emergency Management Agency and local officials during six weather related States of Emergency and has successfully improved the state's communication and response to natural disasters.

Governor Ivey said that Alabama's economy is performing well with unemployment down, revenues are up, and economic development is on the rise. Since she became governor, over $3.5 billion dollars in new direct investments have been committed in the state. These investments have created nearly 8,000 new jobs for Alabama workers. The most recent unemployment numbers put the unemployment rate at 3.5 percent which is the lowest rate ever recorded in Alabama.

Governor Ivey also spoke about her Strong Start, Strong Finish education initiative which improves education all the way from Pre-K to the workforce. She spoke briefly about her General Fund Budget project which is working to help the state fund government appropriately. 

]]> (Super User) Business Sun, 20 May 2018 00:00:00 -0500
Governor Kay Ivey to Speak at Chamber in Session: State of the State, on May 15 Governor Kay Ivey to Speak at Chamber in Session: State of the State, on May 15

Alabama Governor Kay Ivey will speak to Chamber members at Tuesday’s Chamber in Session: State of the State event, scheduled for 11:30 a.m. at Embassy Suites.

Designed to provide Chamber members with updates from key officials on public policy topics, the event is expected to attract close to 300 attendees.

“This year’s State of the State event is of particular significance, as it falls during an election year,” said Jim Page, the President and CEO of the Chamber of Commerce of West Alabama. “Alabama is faced with not only complex issues, but also opportunities for growth and investment, and our members look forward to hearing potential solutions from our officials. Open dialogue between our elected officials and the business community is extremely important.”

Presenting Sponsor for Chamber in Session: State of the State is The University of Alabama System. Gold Sponsors for the event are Embassy Suites – Downtown Tuscaloosa and TekLinks.

]]> (Super User) Business Sat, 12 May 2018 00:00:00 -0500
It's Contest Time: Share to Win It's Contest Time: Share to Win

It’s contest time!

Whether it’s for you or for a special lady, you’ll want this prize - a $50 gift card to BloGo Dry Bar & Salon!

To win: 
-Must be following Druid City Living and BloGo Blow Dry Bar & Salon on Facebook.

-Must like and share this post on Facebook


]]> (Super User) Business Tue, 08 May 2018 22:41:29 -0500
Lin D. Moore III to be Named 2018 Tuscaloosa County Citizen of the Year Lin D. Moore III to be Named 2018 Tuscaloosa County Citizen of the Year

Lin D. Moore will be honored as the 2018 Tuscaloosa County Citizen of the Year Wednesday, May 16, during the Tuscaloosa Civitan Club luncheon at 11:30 a.m. at Embassy Suites.

Moore has served as Chairman of Pritchett-Moore, Inc. insurance agency since 2004. He has more than 20 years of industry experience, and has attained the Certified Insurance Counselor designation. He is a native of Tuscaloosa, and a graduate of the University of Alabama.

When selecting Moore for the award, the Citizen of the Year committee, made up of members of the community, noted his priority toward community involvement and paying his “civic rent.” Moore’s outstanding character and leadership traits were taken into consideration. “Lin has risen to lead many different organizations based on his ability to calmly guide them to become stronger and more successful,” the committee noted.

Moore has been involved in numerous charitable and civic activities, including serving on the Board of Directors of the Tuscaloosa Housing Authority for more than two decades. He serves as the current Chairman of the Board. Moore has also served on the Board of Directors of the Chamber of Commerce of West Alabama, where he was Chairman of the Board, was presented the Member of the Year award in 2005, and given the Distinguished Service Award in 2010.

Moore serves on the Board of Directors of the United Way of West Alabama, and is a past Chairman. He has been a member of the Alexis de Tocqueville Society since 2008. He also serves on the Board of Directors of the Community Foundation of West Alabama.

He is a member of the Regions Bank Advisory Board; the Alabama Independent Insurance Association Board of Directors; the University of Alabama President’s Cabinet, Commerce Executive Society and Alumni Association; and was an officer and member of the Board of Directors of the Tuscaloosa Home Builders Association for several years.

Moore is a lifelong member of Christ Episcopal Church, where he serves on the Family Foundation Board. He and his wife Sharon have a daughter, McLean.

Tickets for the luncheon are $35.00. To purchase a ticket, contact Brett Laney at the office of Edward Jones at (205) 759-3023.

]]> (Super User) Business Mon, 30 Apr 2018 13:45:45 -0500
SMP Holds Grand Opening for New $150 Million Auto Supplier Plant SMP Holds Grand Opening for New $150 Million Auto Supplier Plant

Numerous Tuscaloosa County and state officials were on hand for the recent grand opening of the new $150 million Samvardhana Motherson Peguform (SMP) auto supply plant in Cottondale.

The grand opening was held on Friday, April 27 at the plant, located in the Cedar Grove Technology Park.

 “This is an exciting moment for SMP, and a great day for Alabama and Tuscaloosa,” Governor Kay Ivey said. “SMP is an industry leader with a global manufacturing footprint, and the growing workforce at its new Alabama location will help the company reach new levels of excellence.”

The plant, when fully functional, is expected to employ over 1000 people. At present, the plant employs a workforce of 320. The plant is located on an approximately 100-acre plot, with a building area of approximately 700,000 square feet.

Present at the opening were representatives of the State of Alabama, the Tuscaloosa County Industrial Development Authority (TCIDA), Mercedes-Benz U.S. International, Inc. (MBUSI) and the management team of Samvardhana Motherson Group.

“We are excited about the opportunities that this new plant will bring us. Our focus on North America will continue as we explore new areas in which we can bring value to our customers,” said Vivek Chaand Sehgal, chairman of Samvardhana Motherson Group, SMP’s parent company.

The plant’s focus will be on the production of door panels, bumpers, claddings, roof spoilers and running boards and is currently set up for MBUSI.

 “We are pleased to welcome SMP to the growing base of suppliers in West Alabama working with us to meet the strong customer demand for luxury SUVs,” said Jason Hoff, President and CEO of Mercedes-Benz U.S. International, Inc. “These are exciting times for the automotive industry in Alabama and suppliers like SMP are important partners for us.  I’m confident that they will find that Alabama is a great place to do business.”

]]> (Super User) Business Tue, 01 May 2018 00:00:00 -0500
Druid City Living Business Happenings: April 2018 Druid City Living Business Happenings: April 2018

Druid City Living always wants to recognize our great local businesses. To the new businesses - welcome to town! Remember: Shop local. 

Now Open/Opening Soon 

Brummi’s Yummies is now open in downtown Tuscaloosa (2424 14th Street). This Mississippi-based, family owned bakery specializes in homemade cupcakes and cakes.; (205) 752-2253 

Crimson Care Family Medicine & Urgent Care has opened a new location (1771 Skyland Blvd. E.) in Tuscaloosa. Crimson Care provides medical services to individuals with conditions that require immediate attention but are not life threatening.; (205) 507-1119 

Emergi-Care is now open in its new location in Alberta (1601 University Boulevard East). The medical clinic was established in 1983.; (205) 349-2273 

The Alice Maxwell Team-Keller Williams Realty Tuscaloosa recently celebrated the grand opening of its new location (1490 Northbank Parkway, Suite 180).; (205) 292-4546 

The Left Hand Soap Company has a new location, relocating from Tuscaloosa’s Parkview Plaza to 2214 University Blvd. in downtown Tuscaloosa. The company sells a wide range of products, including soap bars, beard and hair care, and custom soaps.; (205) 792-9565 

Spanish automotive supplier Truck & Wheel Group opened its new 127,000-square-foot, $35 million production facility in Vance (11198 Will Walker Rd.) on March 9. Truck & Wheel USA supplies wheel assemblies, industrial tires, and sequencing for auto manufacturers in the region.  

Ward Scott Architecture of Tuscaloosa has named Zach Ward a principal with the firm. Ward joined the firm in 2009. Ward Scott Architecture was founded in 1983 by Jim Ward. 2715 7th Street;; (205) 345-6110 

News and Happenings 

Paul B. Betz, FACHE, has been named the new chief operating officer of the DCH Health System. Betz most recently served as COO and senior vice president of Maury Regional Health in Columbia, Tennessee. Betz received his MBA from the University of Alabama at Birmingham.  

The Chamber of Commerce of West Alabama has named Carolyn Tubbs the Director of Education Programs. Tubbs, who has served as the Chamber’s Education and Workforce Development Program Manager, will lead the Chamber’s Adopt-A-School program. 

Loosa Brews was recently named the best beer bar in Alabama by readers of The craft beer store, which features 63 taps, growlers, and an arcade, opened its doors in 2014. 412 20th Ave; 

Peco Foods has named Jay McMillan director of special accounts and projects. McMillan will also oversee renovations and expansions of the AmeriCold cold storage warehouse facility Peco recently acquired in West Point, Mississippi, with rail service access on the Kansas City Southern Line. 

Theatre Tuscaloosa’s production of Robert Hawkins’ The End of a Line won several awards at the recent Southeastern Theatre Conference (SETC) in Mobile. Jeanette Waterman, costume designer, won Best Costumes; Drew Baker received Best Actress for her role as Mrs. Nora Ashton; and Kathy Wilson was named a member of the All Star Cast for her role as Miss Margaret Gravlee.


Chief Operating Officer Donny Jones is celebrating 20 years of employment at the Chamber of Commerce of West Alabama.   

Metro Diner is celebrating its one-year anniversary in Tuscaloosa this month. The restaurant is in Midtown Village (1800 McFarland Blvd E #404). (205) 464-9428; 

Tuscaloosa Hyundai celebrated its one-year anniversary in its new location (3831 Hargrove Rd.) last month. (205) 737-8334, 

]]> (Super User) Business Tue, 24 Apr 2018 00:00:00 -0500
Tuscaloosa Tax Accountant Highlights This Year’s Tax Changes Tuscaloosa Tax Accountant Highlights This Year’s Tax Changes

Just in time for tax season, DCL interviewed local tax accountant, Ray Dyer Jr., CPA and Managing Member of Covenant Consulting Group, about tax changes that will impact 2018. Mr. Dyer explains three important changes he will address this year in his practice.


Changes in the Estate Tax Exemption

It might make sense to give to grandmother rather than the kids.

The Estate Tax exemption amount has effectively doubled from approximately $12.5 million per married couple to approximately $25 million per married couple. Over the years plans have been put in place to move assets from the “parents” to the “children” to minimize future estate tax on growth assets.

Now there may be an opportunity to transfer assets to parents – who may likely be the first to die – to get a tax free “stepped up basis”. The tax impact will be noticed when the beneficiaries dispose of the the appreciated assets - any gain is potentially reduced by the stepped up amount. Taking into account future growth, this strategy would likely be most effective for joint estates in the $8 million to $18 million estate range.


Expensing Changes

Like-Kind exchanges are limited to Qualifying Real Property. Personal property no longer qualifies for like-kind exchange treatment. 

Under pre-Tax Cuts and Jobs Act law, depreciable tangible personal property could have been exchanged for like-kind property if the relinquished property and replacement property were of a like class if the properties were either within the same general asset class or within the same product class. In light of the increased and expanded expensing under the cost recovery system (ie, depreciation expense) and Section 179 expense for tangible personal property and certain building improvements, Congress believed that the like-kind exchange rules under Code Section 1031 should be limited to exchanges of qualifying real property. Thus, exchanges of machinery, equipment, vehicles, patents and other intellectual property, artwork, collectibles, and other intangible business assets do not qualify for nonrecognition of gain or loss as like-kind exchange.


Interest Expense Changes

New rules may change the best method for structuring business debt

Every business, regardless of its form, is generally subject to a disallowance of a deduction for net interest expense in excess of 30% of the business's adjusted taxable income. Any interest expense limited under this rule can be carried forward and used at a later date. This may cause certain businesses to evaluate how such business debts are structured.


Ray Dyer Jr., CPA, writes, speaks and teaches on various subjects in addition to his private practice. He is a native of Tuscaloosa and attended the University of Alabama where her received his BS in Accounting and Master of Tax Accounting degrees. His first 10 years of college were spent in Dallas, TX with international accounting firms and as a Controller/Treasurer a national real estate syndication firm.

His emphasis is working with businesses that are going through changes such as entity selection, partnership formation or dissolution, syndication or equity raising.


Covenant Consulting Group provides Accounting, Assurance, Auditing, Valuation, Business Advisory, and Litigation Support services to businesses and families. For more information, please go to

]]> (Christopher Edmunds) Business Mon, 02 Apr 2018 16:23:17 -0500
Druid City Living Business Happenings: March 2018 Druid City Living Business Happenings: March 2018

Druid City Living always wants to recognize our great local businesses. To the new businesses - welcome to town! Remember: Shop local. 

Now Open/Opening Soon 

The Baked Bear, a California-based ice cream shop that offers custom-built ice cream sandwiches, is expected to open in Tuscaloosa’s Midtown Village shopping center (1800 McFarland Blvd E.) in April 2018. The shop offers freshly baked cookies, doughnuts, brownies, and craft ice cream. 

BlowGo Blow Dry Bar & Salon is now open in Tuscaloosa (2370 Jack Warner Parkway, Suite A106). The hair salon offers a variety of salon services, including blow outs, haircuts and styling, and hair color. (205) 861-2546; 

Crimson Care Family Medicine and Urgent Care has opened a second location in Tuscaloosa (1771 Skyland Blvd E.). A grand opening celebration was held on Feb. 14. (205) 507-1119; 

Hooligan’s is opening another restaurant in Tuscaloosa (1351 McFarland Blvd. NE Suite 112).  To find out when the new Hooligan’s is opening, visit @Hooligansttown on Facebook. (205) 759-2424 

Former Alabama and now Atlanta Falcons receiver Julio Jones has opened two car dealerships in Tuscaloosa. Julio Jones Kia and Julio Jones Mazda (4301 Greensboro Avenue) opened on Jan. 30. The dealerships will be managed day-to-day by Georgia-based Carriage Automotive Group. (205) 345-8040 

Moe’s Original Bar B Que is opening its second location in Tuscaloosa’s Hillcrest Center (6570 Alabama Highway 69 South) this month. The restaurant serves pulled pork, ribs, turkey, and chicken smoked over hardwood, along with a host of sauces, side dishes, and desserts. (205) 752-3616; 

Whataburger plans to open a second location in Tuscaloosa. Construction on the Texas-based burger chain’s first Tuscaloosa location (at the intersection of Skyland Blvd. and Highway 69 South), is ongoing. The second restaurant will be located at 13th Street and McFarland Blvd., near the University of Alabama campus. 

News and Happenings 

Wyndi Avery of FASTSIGNS of Tuscaloosa received the Circle of Excellence Award at the 2018 FASTSIGNS Convention held recently in Houston, Texas. Avery is a visual communications specialist at FASTSIGNS. 

Wendy Harris, director of leisure services at PARA, was recognized with the prestigious Merit in Recreation Award, presented by the Alabama Recreation and Parks Association during its annual conference and awards banquet on Jan. 30.

West Alabama Aids Outreach is now Five Horizons Health Services in Tuscaloosa. More staff are on board, and more services are being offered. 


Animal Butter (ab) restaurant celebrated its one-year anniversary in February. The eatery, which focuses on chef-driven ideas for classic street food dishes, is located at 2217 University Blvd. in downtown Tuscaloosa.

Business Tue, 27 Mar 2018 19:00:00 -0500