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Chicken Soup book includes stories by local columnist

Moms are the busiest people in the world. They juggle kids, husbands, home and office (and occasionally a ball or two). The well-loved Chicken Soup for the Soul books is celebrating the multi-talents of moms everywhere with a new book titled, “Chicken Soup for the Soul: the Multitasking Mom’s Survival Guide.”

Jill Pertler, Cloquet’s own syndicated columnist and multitasker, has two stories published this new collection of 101 inspiring and amusing stories for mothers who do it all. Pertler’s story, “A Mom’s Talents Run Deep,” takes a lighthearted look at the superpowers many mothers possess, while the topic matter of her second story, “Toilet Talk,” is self-explanatory.

Chicken Soup for the Soul books have more than 250 titles, with translations into more than 40 languages. The series has sold more than 100 books in the U.S. and Canada alone.

Pertler is a syndicated columnist, author and playwright. Her column,  “Slices of Life” is published in over 130 newspapers across the nation each week.

Both books are available at area bookstores, including Barnes and Noble, or online at

Divine Destinations owner recognized as top 20 agent

Jennifer Maki, owner of Divine Destinations travel agency, has been recognized as one of the top 20 agents out of 3,000 agents nationwide for 2013. In a time where travel agencies seem to have taken a back seat to the internet giants, Maki said, “Sales and local networking combined with service and destination knowledge” are her keys to success.

Local real estate agents earn honors

RE/MAX North Central, the regional office for RE/MAX franchises throughout Minnesota and Wisconsin, has honored Minnesota RE/MAX of Cloquet associates for outstanding achievements in 2013 with the following awards:  

Dianne Siltanen was elected to the 100% Club. The 100% Club level is the fourth highest regional honor for sales in a single year. Nearly 31 percent of 1,436 RE/MAX North Central associates in Minnesota achieved the 100% Club level in 2013.

Debra Switzer was elected to the Executive Club. The Executive Club level is the fifth highest regional honor for sales in a single year. Nearly 22 percent of 1,436 RE/MAX North Central associates in Minnesota achieved the Executive Club level in 2013.

Mercy Hospital makes list of top companies to work for

Mercy Hospital in Moose Lake has been named one of the 2014 100 Best Companies to Work For by Minnesota Business magazine. Now in its third year, the award honors Minnesota companies that set the standard for employee well-being.

The “100 Best” were selected by an independent research firm employing various research techniques — including an anonymous online questionnaire filled out by the employees of each company — to determine which companies in Minnesota excel in the areas of work environment, employee benefits, and overall employee happiness.

The 2014 “100 Best” will be recognized during a June ceremony in St. Paul and will be listed in the June issue of Minnesota Business magazine.

“We are thrilled to receive this honor,” said Sonya Towle, Mercy’s director of Human Resources. “Our most important asset has always been our employees. This honor is a reflection of Mercy’s commitment to our employees along with appreciation for the skill and compassion they bring to their work.”