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Local FEI chapter names Bryant board president

The Nashville Chapter of Financial Executives International has selected Michael Bryant, National Association of State Boards of Accountancy chief financial officer and senior vice president, to be its board president for the 2014-15 year.

Bryant (pictured) joined FEI in 2011 and served on the Nashville board as co-vice president of program development from 2012 to 2014. In that role, Bryant and co-chair Angie Taylor of Vanguard Health Care LLC brought FEI Nashville members programming that included Alberto Gonzalez, former attorney general in the George H.W. Bush administration; Henry Juszkiewicz, CEO of Gibson Guitar Corp.; and Steve Buchanan, president of the Opry Entertainment Group and executive producer of TV show Nashville.

“Michael’s been an asset ever since he joined FEI,” Mark Myers, former FEI president, said in a release. “We look forward to his leadership, professionalism and creativity moving us toward how we can be a better organization locally.”

FEI operates as a forum for financial executives to network and share practices, be represented in critical national and global policy debates, and be aligned with a culture that fosters ethical leadership. The FEI Nashville Chapter has more than 120 members representing an association of senior- and mid-level corporate financial managers.

Apr 16, 2014 7:15 AM

Oppenheimer upgrades CHS

Oppenheimer analyst Michael Wiederhorn this week raised his rating on shares of Community Health Systems — which are down 8 percent in 2014 and 15 percent over the past six months — to 'outperform' from 'market perform.' Wiederhorn's $55 target price leaves more than 50 percent of upside and is 12 percent above the Street's median target of $49.

Apr 16, 2014 7:01 AM

Words & Music adds Melnick as director of creative licensing

Copyright administration company Words & Music has hired Mary Kate Melnick as director of creative licensing. Read more here at

Apr 16, 2014 7:00 AM

Reining in the patent trolls

State lawmakers on Monday sent to Gov. Bill Haslam a bill that will hit with damages and costs entities filing bad-faith patent infringement cases — so called "patent trolls" — against Tennessee companies. A trio of Bass Berry & Sims attorneys has some insights on the legislation.

Under the bill, intended recipients of communications that meet any of these requirements may file suit in any Tennessee circuit or chancery court. Those who prevail shall be awarded litigation costs and fees, including attorneys’ fees, and may be awarded actual damages as well as punitive damages equal to three times the amount of actual damages. In addition, the office of the attorney general is empowered to enforce the bill through its investigative and prosecutorial authority.

Apr 15, 2014 2:11 PM

'Rolling Stone Country' taps Hudak as senior editor

Fledgling publication Rolling Stone Country has named Joseph Hudak, a former managing editor at Country Weekly, its senior editor, according to Read the details here.

Apr 15, 2014 12:52 PM

Murfreesboro Pike strip center sells for $5.57M

A Percy Priest Lake-area retail strip center has changed ownership hands for $5.57 million.

Summit Retail LLC sold The Shoppes of Edge-O-Lake to Denver-based BDFIF IV Edge of Lake LLC, according to Davidson County Register of Deeds documents. The center is located at 2510 Murfreesboro Pike.

The mailing address for BDFIF is the same as that of Baceline Investments. According to the company website, Baceline has real estate holdings in 10 states, with Edge-O-Lake the company’s first acquisition in Tennessee. Baceline officials could not be reached for comment. 

In February 2011, Shoppes of Edge-O-Lake developer Murfreesboro Edge-O-Lake LLC deeded the project back to The Bank of Nashville in lieu of foreclosure, according to the Nashville Business Journal. At the time, the NBJ reported the developer did so to satisfy two loans with a combined unpaid balance of about $7.4 million.

Summit Retail would later buy the property in June 2011 for $3.5 million.

Apr 15, 2014 11:49 AM

Music/event-focused hackathon set around Bonnaroo

The organizers of the Bonnaroo festival also are again organizing Hackeroo, a local hackathon where participants will build apps, services and technology that serve live events, in conjunction with sponsor Emma. The hackathon will take place at Emma's Bistro on Rolling Mill Hill on May 10 and 11. The winner will receive VIP access to Bonnaroo, where the winning product will be marketed to the festival's audience of 80,000 and to the Southland technology and entrepreneurship conference being held in Nashville just prior.

Travis Laurendine, who started Hackeroo last year, will once again host and mentor developers throughout Hackeroo. Also participating in Hackeroo will be Sarah Lacy, founder and CEO of PandoDaily, which is co-producing Southland with Launch Tennessee.

"Last year, we were empowered by Bonnaroo to test the concept of a hackathon that takes the technology developed and integrates it into the festival," Laurendine said. "Now, with the backing of Southland in addition to Bonnaroo producers Superfly and AC Entertainment, we are going to scale this event into the premier yearly music hackathon in Music City USA."

Check out more info here.

Apr 15, 2014 11:37 AM

Healthspek to present at AARP expo

Developers of the Nashville-based personal health management app Healthspek have been invited to pitch their product at AARP's national expo in May.

The expo, to be held in Boston, will showcase 10 startups in the "50 and over" health technology market, with access to consumers, venture capitalists and other investors. Healthspek is a free iPad tool that safely tracks, collects and disseminates personal health care information.

"Today's health care environment is putting the power back in the hands of the people, and we see that as very positive," Randy Farr, Healthspek CEO, said in a release. "Consumers now have an opportunity to manage their own care, working with their doctors to streamline the flow of information. The benefits in cost reduction, efficiency, disease prevention and peace of mind are significant, and we believe we're just scratching the surface of how this technology could revolutionize American health care."

Apr 15, 2014 9:50 AM

TPAC announces hires, promotions

The Tennessee Performing Arts Center has announced the promotion of Teresa Ellithorpe to vice president of events sales and services and Ronda Helton to vice president of marketing and Communications.

The promotions are two of many personnel changes at TPAC.

The non-profit performing arts center has hired Katelynn Baker as an events sales and services manager, Caitlin Cuppernull as HR and payroll coordinator, Phillip Lunsford as web services manager and Daniela Medina as manager of public relations and community outreach.

Also, TPAC has promoted Tony Marks to director of communications and public relations, Karen Palin to director of technical operations and Kathleen Cecil to ticket sales supervisor.

Ellithorpe, a graduate of the IAVM Facility Management School at Ogelbay, joined TPAC in 1999. She will maintain oversight of booking for TPAC and the historic War Memorial Auditorium and be responsible for venue rental sales initiatives as well as contract negotiation and compliance. 

Helton, who joined TPAC last year to direct the marketing department, will supervise all aspects of marketing, communications, and branding campaigns for TPAC and the historic War Memorial Auditorium.

Marks, who joined TPAC in 2012 to manage publicity of the Broadway season, will direct the organization’s broad communications strategies for programming, education and community outreach.

Palin, who has worked with TPAC since 1994, will supervise technical staff and maintenance of facilities as well as coordinate with clients and internal departments on technical advance or productions and use of the theaters.

Cecil, who started at TPAC in 2011, will supervise TPAC’s box office during events, serve as ticketing contact for a variety of productions, including the Nashville Opera, which is one of TPAC’s resident companies.

Apr 15, 2014 8:36 AM

Image use case against MoonPie maker dismissed

The Tennessee Court of Appeals has ruled that the use by the makers of MoonPies and RC Cola of a more than 30-year-old photograph did not violate the rights of the area resident depicted. Bradley Wells had sued CBI and Dr. Pepper Snapple Group two summers ago, claiming the companies had, among other things, violated the Tennessee Consumer Protection Act and unjustly enriched themselves off his image. But the defendants won the day both in trial court and before the appeals judges by arguing that the case centered on federal copyright issues and this couldn't be heard in local courts.

Bone McAllester Norton attorney Stephen Zralek writes here about how he helped win the case.

This case highlights the intersection between the right of publicity and copyright, serving as a reminder that questions of preemption are always decided on a case by case basis.  Not all photographs qualify for protection under either copyright law or the right of publicity; sometimes they invoke rights under one body of law, sometimes both and sometimes neither.  The legal nuances surrounding copyright and the right of publicity are complicated, rapidly evolving and sometimes overlapping.

Apr 15, 2014 7:12 AM