Carmel in brief — February 14, 2023


Statehouse pages sought – Lawmakers are inviting local students to spend a day serving as a page at the Indiana Statehouse during the legislative session. Hoosier students ages 13 to 18 can sign up to assist lawmakers and staff with daily duties while touring the governor’s office, the Indiana Supreme Court and the House and Senate chambers. Opportunities to page are available on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays throughout the session, which must conclude by the end of April. Students are responsible for their lunch, and transportation to and from the Statehouse.  To apply, visit or

Kindergarten registration – Registration is open for the Carmel Clay Schools kindergarten class for the 2023-24 school year. Early registration helps CCS prepare for anticipated staffing needs and allows families to begin the kindergarten assessment process and receive communication from the district. Register for the Class of 2036 at

Earth Day Art Contest – Carmel Green Initiative is inviting students in kindergarten through 12th grade to enter the 2023 Earth Day Art Contest. Art entries will be displayed at several community exhibits to give youth a voice, empowering them to inspire the community to live more sustainably. Entries are due Feb. 17. Learn more at

Parent education classes – The Chris Center is presenting a series of free parent education classes designed to provide support and information to parents and caregivers raising adolescents. Remaining classes are:

  • 6:30 p.m. Feb. 21 at Carmel Clay Public Library – The Impact of Screen Time and Social Media on Mental Health.
  • 6:30 p.m. March 1 at Carmel Clay Public Library – Neurodiversity: Increasing Awareness Around an Invisible Disability.

Register and learn more at

Mission Possible – Assistance League of Indianapolis will present its Mission Possible fundraiser on April 22 at the Eiteljorg Museum, 500 W. Washington St. in Indianapolis. This marks the first time the annual event has been held in person since before the COVID-19 pandemic. The fundraiser will include dining, a raffle and silent auction, and opportunities to view items in the museum. Learn more at

Candidate town hall meetings – Chuck Ford, a Republican for the North Central District Carmel City Council seat, is hosting town hall-style meetings from 7 to 8 p.m. Feb. 16, March 16 and April 13 at the Carmel American Legion Post 155, 852 W. Main St. The events are open to the public and will allow an opportunity for community members to ask questions of the candidate.

Ice skating tickets available – Tickets for the Ice at Carter Green are on sale. The rink will be open through Feb. 26. Skate sessions last 90 minutes, unless noted on the skate session calendar. The cost per session on all days is $10 for adults and youth 11 and older, $8 for children 10 and younger. Skates may be rented for $4 per person. Buy tickets and learn more at

Hamilton County Democratic Women meetings— The Hamilton County Democratic Women meet every third Saturday of the month at the Delaware Township Trustee Building 9090 E. 131st, Fishers. Conversations begin at 9:30 a.m., the meeting is from 10 a.m. to 11. All Hamilton County women are welcome.

Monthly beekeepers meeting – The North Central Beekeepers Club meets the third Wednesday of the month at 6:30 p.m. at Cool Creek Nature Center, 2000 E. 151st St. in Westfield. Meetings are free to attend by all levels of beekeepers located centrally north of Indianapolis. Those interested in becoming beekeepers are welcome. For more information, visit

On the Menu: Effective Networking – OneZone Chamber of Commerce will present On the Menu: Effective Networking from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Feb. 28. Attendees will hear from Jamar Cobb-Dennard with Indiana Business Advisors as he shares how to stop wasting time networking and unlock the ability to bring in new business. On the Menu is a casual, informative lunch event with topics geared toward helping members grow personally and professionally. This is the first event in the series. Registration for the members-only event is required by noon Feb. 14. Cost is $28. Learn more and reserve a spot at or by calling 317-436-4653.

Finkam joins NSBA Leadership Council – The National Small Business Association, the nation’s oldest small-business advocacy organization, recently announced that Sue Finkam, business executive and CEO of FireStarter LLC, a national marketing consultancy headquartered in Carmel, has been named to its Leadership Council. Finkam, who is also a member of the Carmel City Council, joins the NSBA Leadership Council alongside other small-business advocates from across the country as they work to promote the interests of small businesses to policymakers in Indiana and Washington, D.C.

Centier Bank makes donation – Centier Bank recently presented a $52,000 gift to nine United Way agencies across Indiana as part of its annual United Way Workplace Campaign. Centier Bank’s associate contributions and a corporate gift will impact approximately 600,000 individuals throughout the state, helping serve more than 100 local United Way programs. The donation supports the United Way organizations in the 11 counties in which Centier serves, including Lake, Porter, La Porte, St. Joseph, Elkhart, Marshall, Allen, Tippecanoe, Boone, Marion and Hamilton counties.

Pacers broadcaster honored – The National Sports Media Association has selected Carmel resident Chris Denari as the Indiana Sportscaster of the Year. Denari is the play-by-play announcer for the Indiana Pacers on Bally Sports. The NSMA will honor its award winners and Hall of Fame inductees during the organization’s 63rd awards weekend and national convention, scheduled for June 24-26 in Winston-Salem, N.C.

CNO Financial Group promotions – Carmel-based CNO Financial Group has appointed Jean Linnenbringer as chief operations officer and Mike Mead as chief information officer. Linnenbringer has more than 30 years of operations management experience in the insurance and financial services industries. She joined CNO in 2015 and since August 2017 has served as the company’s senior vice president of enterprise operations. Mead has more than 25 years of experience in general management and technology leadership within the insurance industry. He joined CNO in 2018 as senior vice president and chief information officer.

Pierce Aerospace partnership – Pierce Aerospace announced a partnership with Skye Air Mobility at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. The partnership brings Pierce Aerospace’s Flight Portal ID UAS Technologies as an integrated Remote ID solution with Skye Air Mobility’s drone delivery platforms and Skye UTM beginning this year. Skye Air Mobility brings drone delivery to India’s healthcare, e-commerce, quick commerce and agri-commodity sectors to build the fastest, most sustainable and most efficient network to transport everything and anything that a drone can fly.

Merchants Bank hire – Merchants Bank has hired Marquisha Bridgeman as vice president of community and business banking partnerships. She will work from the Merchants Bank headquarters in Carmel. Bridgeman has more than 13 years of experience leading community engagement and marketing initiatives to build an extensive business and non-profit network throughout central Indiana. She earned her Master of Science degree in strategic leadership and design from the University of Indianapolis and a bachelor’s degree in business and human resource management from Kelley School of Business.

Allied Solutions promotion – Allied Solutions promoted Mark Bugalski to senior vice president and chief growth officer effective Jan. 1. Bugalski most recently led the sales and marketing division for Allied’s Southern region covering 13 states. Over a 12-month period, Bugalski will partner with outgoing Executive Vice President and Chief Revenue Officer David Underdale to ensure a smooth transition for clients and employees. Underdale plans to retire in December after a nearly 40-year tenure at both Allied Solutions and Securian Financial.   

Diabetes Prevention Program – Franciscan Health is offering a Diabetes Prevention Program, an initiative that provides a supportive environment where participants work together in small groups to learn about healthier eating and boosting their physical activity to reduce their contracting diabetes. The program is led by a trained lifestyle coach in a classroom setting and delivered over a 12-month period. Participants must be at least 18 years old, overweight (body mass index over 25), diagnosed with prediabetic conditions or diagnosed with gestational diabetes at any time. Qualified participants can reach out to [email protected] or call 317-528-4962 to inquire about the program and to register.

Blood donation guidance updated – The American Red Cross invites those who spent time in the U.K., Ireland or France and have never tried to give blood because of concerns over variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease (vCJD) – related to mad cow disease – to give blood and help save lives. Recently, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration updated its blood donor eligibility guidance on vCJD, eliminating the deferral for those who spent time in the U.K., Ireland and France between 1980 and 2001. In alignment with FDA changes, the Red Cross began accepting donations Oct. 3 from individuals who have not tried giving blood before due to the prior donation criteria. Learn more and schedule an appointment at

500 Festival launches Living Well Program – The 500 Festival has launched the Living Well Program, a no-cost, resident-based health initiative for apartment complexes to promote resident wellness and build community. It includes discounted registration for the OneAmerica 500 Festival Mini-Marathon and Delta Dental 500 Festival 5K, training resources and built-in support to reach health goals. It also features head-to-head competition against other apartment complexes for an award for resident participation. Learn more at

Hospice volunteers needed – Brighton Hospice in Carmel is looking for volunteers to help office staff perform a variety of office duties such as organizing admission paperwork, filing, preparing and sending mail, answering phones, stocking supplies and helping with special projects and events. Hours and days for this volunteer opportunity are flexible and training will be provided. To learn more, contact Katresha Taylor, volunteer coordinator, by calling 317-798-2160 or by email at [email protected].