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Business briefs

ASPEN As businesses and individuals face uncertain economic times, they are scaling back donations and contributions to non-profits and charities.Poss Architecture + Planning has capitalized on their relationship with Autodesk to secure an Invest in Education Grant for Colorado Mountain College. The grant provides 25 licenses of Revit 2009 software for 13 months. Revit is software used by design professionals.Educating architects, builders and contractors on Revit will provide them with not only a highly marketable skill, but also a major competitive advantage as they begin or further their design careers, Poss representatives said. Companies that spend a minimum of $25,000 (purchasing new licenses, cross-grades, or upgrades of qualifying Autodesk 3D software), earn the option to grant matching software to a North American-based, post-secondary educational institution of their choice. Eric Wood, a Poss designer, learned of the grant last fall at Autodesk University and presented to Bill Poss and Rick Johnson, instructional chair for workforce development at CMCs Aspen campus, the idea of applying for the grant. The first Revit class will be offered this summer at CMC-Aspen. Registration details for the course are available by contacting CMC at 925-7740.

Keystone, Colo. An estimated 900 ski industry professionals from around the U.S., Canada, Europe, and South America are meeting at the Keystone Conference Center for the 34th Annual Mountain Travel Symposium from March 30-April 4. The Trade Exchange, a business-to-business trade show where contracts and business for the next ski season are negotiated will be held on March 30-31, with a Group Exchange on April 3. The forum includes two full days of general sessions and small workshops, and is scheduled for April 1-2. This years featured speakers include Dr. Lalia Rach with Survival Guide: Understanding Consumers During Interesting Times at 8:30 a.m., followed by a presentation by two ski industry giants Rob Katz, CEO of Vail Resorts and Mike Shannon, founder of KSL Recreation Corporation and KSL Capital Partners, specializing in real estate at resort and beach destinations. Their session, titled, The State of Destination Mountain Travel 2010: Taking it from the Top: Where and How Do We Go From Here? begins at 10:15 a.m. on Wednesday. Afternoon workshops on a variety of topics for the mountain travel industry will cater to small groups. Dr. Oren Harari launches Thursday mornings agenda at 8:30 a.m. with the third general session and keynote presentation Blueprint for Success in Turmoil: The Culture of Change.Although not recession-proof as often claimed, the mountain travel industry demonstrated a higher level of resiliency than other sectors of the economy during the past six months. A combination of generally good snow conditions, enticing discounts, and rapid response and adjustments to economic pressures helped boost many resorts to a less bad season than projected last November. However, the tone of this years symposium is expected to have a higher level of intensity as participants negotiate for coveted groups and visitors for next season.

BASALT Local journalist Cindy Hirschfeld, of Basalt, won a Harold S. Hirsch award for best newspaper feature writing from the North American Snowsports Journalists Association.The award is the second for Hirschfeld. This time, it was for her articles published in the New York Times.The Harold S. Hirsch Awards, named after the ski clothing pioneer-creator of the White Stag Co., honors the best writers in the snow sports journalism fields of magazines, newspapers, columns and Internet, as well as winter sports photography and TV broadcasting. The awards were underwritten by prize grants from the Head Ski Corp., and Sport Obermeyer.

CARBONDALE The Colorado Business Incubation Association (CBIA) has awarded a scholarship to Randi Lowenthall of the Roaring Fork Business Resource Center.Lowenthal, of Carbondale, will attend the 23rd International Conference on Business Incubation hosted by the National Business Incubation Association (NBIA).Prior to forming the Roaring Fork Business Resource Center in March 2009, Lowenthal served as the executive director of the Carbondale Chamber of Commerce for more than five years. Lowenthal created the center to promote existing business resources and create new learning opportunities to enable small businesses to survive and be successful.NBIAs 23rd International Conference on Business Incubation will take place April 19-22, at the Westin Crown Center in Kansas City, Mo. The event will feature educational sessions, roundtable discussions and networking activities.

GLENWOOD SPRINGS Colorado Mountain College has gathered four awards from the 24th Annual Admissions Advertising Awards, the largest educational advertising awards in the country. The winning entries were produced by CMC staff in Glenwood Springs and by a graduate of the colleges graphic design program.Beth Zukowski, marketing specialist for the Roaring Fork campus, designed a gold-award-winning class schedule for spring 2009.Two other Glenwood residents also took honors. The colleges marketing and communications editor, Sara Fowler, and CMC graphic design graduate, Crystal Aschmann Sutherland, teamed up to create several award-winning ads. Fowler and Sutherland earned two merit awards, one for a newspaper ad that promoted CMC spring registration and another for a series of banner ads that appeared on the sides of buses in the Denver area. The college also received a silver award for the 2008-10 academic catalog.Sponsored by the Higher Education Marketing Report, a national trade publication, the competition attracted more than 2,000 entries from more than 1,000 colleges and universities, from every state and several foreign countries. Entries are judged against those from institutions with same-size enrollment.

ASPEN Cracks & Racks, located in the Aspen Airport Business Center, has been designated a Thule 5-Star Dealer. Thule USA has recognized Cracks & Racks for demonstrating top-notch service and support of Thule roof-rack products. Cracks & Racks has carried Thule products for over eight years. Thule USA is based in Seymour, Conn.

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