Mold Drs. USA – Specializing in Water Damage and Mold Remediation

Mold Drs. USA

Specializing in Water Damage and Mold Remediation

Mold Drs. USAIf you’re a native Tennessean, you already understand how pervasive mold can be. If you’re a transplant from another part of the country, you’ll soon discover what native Tennesseans already understand about mold.

But whether you’re a Tennessee native or a transplant, what you might not know is just how harmful mold can be to your family’s health, not to mention the physical damage it can do to your home. While mold within your home can go undetected, it can still become the source of allergic reactions and respiratory problems. Then there is the mold homeowners discover that they attempt to remediate themselves or contract out, often to contractors who lack the training and experience necessary to eliminate mold.

At Mold Drs. USA, local entrepreneurs and husband and wife team, Jeremy and Ashley Akers, have combined the training, experience, and certifications necessary to create Knoxville area’s only certified residential mold remediation company. While there are other companies that offer mold remediation services, Mold Drs. USA is your only certified residential mold remediation option.

EK: Jeremy, what most of our readers are likely unaware of is that your interest in mold remediation goes back to your early childhood. Explain.

Jeremy: Well, I had experienced the typical East Tennessee allergies for many years, and my family just assumed it was like everyone else’s allergies. It wasn’t until my father started removing baseboards, while remodeling our home, that he realized everything was covered with mold. To make matters worse, my bedroom was in the basement, which is the perfect breeding ground in the majority of homes for mold in East Tennessee.

EK: In part, due to our homes becoming more energy efficient, mold related problems have actually worsened. Why is that?

Ashley: In some cases, yes, this is true. The more energy efficient and air tight your home is, the more likely your home is to trap unwanted contaminants inside the living space that can be the source of mold.

EK: Many homeowners take on mold problems as do-it-yourselfers. I guess their tool of choice is chlorine bleach. Is bleach a good choice for mold remediation?

Jeremy: First, let me add to what Ashley just said. While it’s great to have an energy efficient, air tight home, it’s also important to have a balanced heating and air conditioning system. Poorly designed or improperly maintained HVAC systems can contribute to the potential for mold in your home as well.

With regard to bleach, we have many business and residential customers that ask us on a regular basis if bleach can solve their mold problems. The answer is no. The EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) excludes bleach as a mold cleaning agent. Unfortunately, we see all too many customers pay for mold remediation services where bleach was used. On non-porous surfaces (porcelain tile, metal), bleach does work. However, on porous surfaces (a typical crawlspace/basement, baseboards, walls, etc.), bleach does not work. Simply put, the properties of chlorine bleach prevent bleach from penetrating many of today’s building product surfaces.

EK: A homeowner’s second choice is to hire a mold remediation company. But with so many companies claiming to be mold remediation specialists, how can homeowners know who they can trust?

Ashley: Unfortunately, there are many companies in our area that claim to be mold remediation specialists, although they have little or no training at all. Sadly, the average consumer has no idea that the contractor that they may be considering lacks even the basic skills needed to detect and eliminate their mold problems. Also, they often charge more than legitimate mold remediation companies. Every state is different on what they hold a business accountable for. Most states protect their citizens by regulating mold remediation contractors. Tennessee does not, and as a concerned mother, I hope this changes in the future. Your best protection until then is to insist that the contractor you’re considering is ACAC Certified.

EK: So what you’re telling our readers is that inexperienced do-it-yourselfers and mold remediation specialists can actually make a bad mold problem even worse?

Jeremy: Absolutely, that is exactly what we are saying. Just removing the mold damaged building material is not the solution. What consumers need to understand is that if you can see mold, then the problem is likely even more pervasive then it appears, because what you can’t see is even more concerning. Mold has to be present in the air before it begins growing on building material surfaces.

EK: If mold exists in our homes but goes undetected, what signs should a homeowner look for?

Ashley: If undetected, you wouldn’t necessarily observe any obvious signs (mold growing on walls, smells lingering). As an example, we recently completed work on a home in Athens. The customer was suffering from pulmonary embolism. The family couldn’t see any visible signs of mold in the home (living space or the crawlspace). A plumber discovered a massive sewer leak that was discharging waste for an unknown period of time into their crawlspace. They had no idea that their crawlspace was full of mold until this discovery. We always encourage customers to retain a third party to provide testing that is analyzed by an independent lab. Many mold remediation companies provide their testing, which is a potential conflict of interest. For the same reasons that restaurants aren’t permitted to conduct their own health inspection, we feel strongly about requesting independent third party testing. It’s an issue of ethics.

EK: In selecting a mold remediation company, what certifications are essential?

Jeremy: I would recommend that consumers insist on an ACAC Certified Mold Remediation Contractor. ACAC is the only organization supported and recommended by the American Lung Association and the Council of Engineering and Scientific Building. The ACAC was the first organization to be listed as a prerequisite for state licensing. It is the only organization to see its certifications recommended by the U.S. Government. Only 70% of applicants for certification are accepted (after providing a work related resume), and then their application requires board review and approval. It is a lengthy and exhaustive process, but it offers customers the peace of mind they deserve when hiring a qualified mold remediation contractor.

EK: In closing, is there anything else you would like to add?

Ashley: In such an unregulated marketplace as the mold remediation industry, we are saddened by the many stories we hear from customers who paid two to three times more for mold remediation work to companies that did not have the required training or experience. To make matters worse, the customer now has to pay a certified contractor to remediate their mold problem. I encourage your readers, even though they may have an existing relationship with a company that offers mold remediation services, to insist on a second opinion. After all, your family’s health is at stake. As a mom, I appreciate things being done right. The health and well-being of your family members are as important to us as the health and well-being of our own children. I invite you to discover the Mold Drs. USA difference.

Mold Drs. USA

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Spa 9700

Spa 9700

You can treat mom, stepmom, mother-in-law, grandmother, aunt, sister, or the “just like a mom” in your life to something very memorable, sure to make you her favorite. The thoughtful spa treatment packages created just for Mother’s Day make your job easy. Packages such as the REAL Mother’s Day, which includes a hot stone massage, custom luxury facial, spa manicure, pedicure, make-up application, and lunch catered from the Chop House.

The budget friendly Mini Escape includes an upper body massage, petite facial, a spa manicure, a pedicure, and lunch catered from the Chop House. This is the perfect selection for a first-time spa goer or for someone who is short on time but who still needs a “treat.”

To truly celebrate with mom, try the Mom and Me, which includes, for each of you, a full body massage, a custom luxury facial, a spa manicure, pedicure, and lunch catered from the Chop House.

You really can’t go wrong. Spa 9700’s comfortable, private, and relaxing environment is suited for treating anyone, but especially mom, like royalty.

In addition, Spa 9700 also celebrates strawberry season with treatments featuring that sweet red berry that is abundant this time of year. During May and June, you must try the Strawberry Smash Pedicure, which begins with a relaxing soak in sparkling, citrus, cilantro oil and finishes with an application of strawberry fruit cells and whipped shea butter. An added pleasure will be a serving of fresh strawberries to tantalize your palate. Spa 9700’s Strawberry Pedicure is so popular that it was included in Day Spa Magazine in the spring of 2014.

If you have visited the retail boutique (a part of the spa entrance), you know that Spa 9700 offers some very unusual gift items like pajamas, jewelry, handbags, candles, and body care. There are also beach bags, beach towels, sunscreens, luggage, and other essentials for summer travel. A true “resort style” boutique, you’ll find great gifts and something for yourself also.

Mom is sure to love her visit to Spa 9700, so celebrate her with a gift certificate or gift from Spa 9700!

Spa 9700
9700 Kingston Pike
Knoxville, TN 37922

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Southeastern Dermatology Consultants

Southeastern Dermatology Consultants

By Jennifer Greshaw, Cosmetic Concierge/Product Educator at Southeastern Dermatology Consultants

Southeastern DermatologyHave you ever looked at someone and wondered how their skin could be so brilliant or youthful, or perhaps it appeared flawless or ageless? I’ll let you in on a secret – it’s not just luck. We cannot deny that many things contribute to great skin – lifestyle, genetics, overall health, and wellness are all factors. However, when it comes to maintaining and rejuvenating your skin’s radiant, youthful appearance, a combination of in-office cosmetic procedures and aesthetic treatments see their best results when paired with a good at-home skincare regimen.

When building a good skincare regimen, you want to focus on four main areas: exfoliation, hydration, restoration, and protection.

First, you need to exfoliate your skin. Exfoliation removes dead skin cells on the outmost layer of the skin, or epidermis, leaving you with smoother, fresher skin. We recommend chemical exfoliates such as alpha hydroxy (AHA) and beta hydroxy (BHA) acids as the best way to remove these skin cells. These ingredients can be found in a cleanser, toner, or moisturizer.

Next, you want to focus on hydration. When your skin is properly hydrated, it appears more fresh and youthful looking. Choosing the right moisturizer is key. You’ll want to choose a moisturizer for your skin type that contains antioxidants that will fight off free radical damage. Also, don’t forget to drink that water!

After exfoliating and hydrating, we need to start repairing some things. As the body’s first line of physical defense, the skin can undergo a lot of aggressors. This is why using a retinol is so important. Retinols have been proven to boost collagen and repair damage done to vulnerable, aging skin. They are recommended for almost everyone over the age of 20 who is not pregnant or nursing.

Another important area of repair is restoring that youthful appearance by filling in fine lines and wrinkles. You want to incorporate growth factor, proteins, and peptides in your regimen for this. We recommend TNS Essential Serum as one of the best products on the market for skin rejuvenation. This serum not only brightens, firms, and improves all-over skin texture, but it also fills in fine lines and wrinkles, helping you look the way you feel on the inside.

Last but not least, our skin needs protection. Science has shown us over and over again the seriousness of protecting our skin from harmful UVA/UVB rays. These harmful solar rays break down our skin, making it vulnerable to developing skin cancer, while breaking down collagen and elastin and accelerating the aging process. As much as we know how important it is to avoid the sun, we know this is impossible. To make sure you are protected, we recommend wearing a broadband spectrum sunscreen that contains an SPF of 30-45 or higher. Sunscreen isn’t just for the beach. It’s for everyday life and needs to be an essential in your daily skincare regimen.

Southeastern Dermatology Consultants offer top-of-the-line, professional, medical-grade products that will give you proven results. We will work with you to customize an individual skincare regimen that best fits your needs, lifestyle, and budget.

Southeastern Dermatology Consultants
1924 Pinnacle Pointe Way, Suite 300
Knoxville, TN 37922

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The Harder You Work, the Luckier You’ll Become

The Harder You Work, the Luckier You’ll Become

By Tom Irmen

One of the advantages of having been self-employed for more than 30 years is the accumulated experiences that you can draw on when making important decisions or when reacting to unforeseen challenges. Many of the decisions and challenges that occurred early in my entrepreneurial experience seemed very daunting. Today most appear trivial. But that’s the value of experience.

One major disadvantage of my more than three decades of experience, however, is that it’s not always easy to relate with today’s new entrepreneurs.

I guess what I recall most from my early self-employment experiences was the fear of failure. While there were numerous examples of those who had gone before me that had succeeded, like so many other new entrepreneurs, I often wondered if they were the exception, and if they were, what chance would I have?

This led to the belief that success in business came largely from luck, a role of the dice. Today I understand that while there is a small degree of luck involved in success, it’s rarely enough to transform a failing business model into a successful one.

I can honestly say that the success in the small business marketplace during the last 33 years came almost entirely from offering customers a quality product and/or service and a great deal of hard work. In fact, I cannot recall a single small business failure that resulted when these two components were present. Not a single one!

If you’re one of those aspiring entrepreneurs who believe that success is entirely determined by luck, you would probably be best served by avoiding self-employment. If, on the other hand, you’re willing to accept my more than three decades of experience and my assurance that I have never witnessed a single small business failure where a quality product and/or service was combined with a lot of hard work, then I think you’re going to enjoy your small business experience and the success that will inevitably result.

The harder you work, the luckier you’ll become.

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elle Boutique Turns 8!

elle Boutique Turns 8!

elle Boutique
It’s hard to believe that we have been serving our wonderful Knoxville community for eight years! As a thank you to our wonderful customers for your support, we invite you to come celebrate elle’s birthday with us on Saturday, May 9, from 10-6! This will be a day you won’t want to miss, where we will be offering 25% off the whole store, champagne and hors d’oeuvre’s from chef Brian Strutz, and some amazing door prizes!

We will also be celebrating all moms at our party with a little gift from elle in honor of Mother’s Day! So come celebrate our birthday, as well as Mother’s Day, while shopping discounts for yourself or on gifts for your mom from all your favorite designers such as such as Alice and Trixie, Trina Turk, Splendid, Citizens of Humanity, and MOTHER, as well as all of our new designers from Current Elliott, CP Shades, Sundry, Turkish-T, Melody Vintage Jewelry, Eberjey, and more.

We thank you for your continued support and look forward to celebrating with you May 9th!

elle Boutique
5508 Kingston Pike, Suite 130
Knoxville, TN 37919

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Koko Fit Club

Can You Come By This Week?

Koko FitClubOur members rave that Koko is effective… that Koko really does change lives! Members know from their Koko experience that our personalized and customized approach to fitness gets the results you desire – guaranteed! They will also tell you that we are the cleanest, most comfortable, non-intimidating, and motivating workout environment they have experienced. Check us out on Facebook, and read about our members’ compelling success stories.

Koko’s Smartraining approach incorporates the latest in fitness research to provide effective and safe exercise. Our use of technology makes it easy to know what exercises to do, when to do them, and how to do them correctly. We take the guesswork out of fitness! Just show up and follow your customized program.

Additionally, our FitCoaches deliver the “personal” touch to guide and motivate you through your cardio, strength, and nutrition programs.

But don’t take our word for it. Judge for yourself. Stop in and meet our members and our staff. Or simply arrange to try our risk-free trial of 30 days for $30. This will give you a great opportunity to experience first-hand how our evidence-based strength training and audio-coached cardio training will make a difference in your life. It certainly is the best way for you to experience the Koko difference.

Also, if you want more “personal” in your personal training experience, come in and check out our Koko PLUS memberships. We guarantee you will not find a more effective or affordable personal training experience anywhere in town.

With Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, and graduations on the horizon, consider giving the gift of health to those you care about. A Koko gift certificate might be just what is needed.

Sound interesting? Call today, and set up a time to come in and experience the Koko difference. We look forward to showing you around. Hope to see you soon!

Koko FitClub

4614 Kingston Pike in Bearden

153 Brooklawn Street in Farragut

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The Lily Pad

Meet Renèe… A Part of Our Head to Toe Team

Many of you have had the good fortune to meet Renèe Fisher, our makeup artist who, after 30 years in corporate America, developed and launched her line of skincare and makeup, kathryn bartow, named for her mother and grandmother. Loving her new entrepreneurial, East Tennessee life, Renèe can be found at The Lily Pad, working with women to find clothes, shoes, jewelry, and makeup. She’ll come to your home to sort through your closet to decide what to keep, toss, donate, and buy – personal wardrobing at its best!

You may also find Renèe working in her jewelry studio inside Sweet Soles. You must see her beautiful, handmade pieces!

Wherever you find her, she’ll be gracious, helpful, and ever-so-beautiful… glowing with newfound life experience in “doing her own thing!” – Brenda Bryan

Meet Renèe

The Lily PadI grew up in a small town in Georgia. My grandmother was creative and inspired me daily. I also watched my dad create anything he imagined. For years, I watched my parents operate a successful business, which I credit my work ethic and “can do” approach. I cherish my roots; however, NYC was my dream.

I followed my passion and joined Estee Lauder in Atlanta, where I taught artistry skills to customers and makeup artists. I then realized my NYC dream! I worked with renowned makeup artist, Vincent Longo, to develop his collections and teach his artists, nationally and internationally. I did countless photo shoots, NYC Fashion Week, etc. After leaving Vincent, I continued with other NYC companies, each bringing invaluable experiences. I never imagined that life would be so rewarding and exciting!

After 10 years in NYC, I moved to Tennessee for family and rejoined ELC representing Bobbi Brown. I turned 50 and decided it was finally time to “do my thing!”

Thanks to Brenda, who nudged me, I’ve launched renèe fisher – “why just be pretty on the inside?” – which includes kathryn bartow and arT by fisher. Brenda and I share the same passion for working with women. For us, almost nothing is more rewarding than working with a woman to help create her wardrobe from head to toe. Our goal is that every morning you get dressed with confidence!

In the beginning, I wanted to do editorial makeup. I soon realized that models don’t appreciate your work; however, real woman do! This is what I treasure most about what I’m doing now. Every day I listen to and work with real women – teach and create. Applying makeup and getting dressed has to be easy and fun!

What does this mean for you? Experienced, knowledgeable women who LISTEN and want to help! To schedule your appointment, call Renèe at 423-667-1033.

The Lily Pad
209 N. Main Street
Sweetwater, TN 37874

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Lowell Russell

Lowell Russell

By Zach Knott

Lowell RussellWithin seconds of impact, Sgt. Lowell Russell’s patrol car had engulfed in flames. The impact of the runaway semi-truck, whose driver had fallen asleep, mashed metal and broke bones. Smoke filled his lungs, and flames crept nearer as he sat unconscious, trapped by his life-saving seatbelt. Death surrounded Lowell Russell.

Lowell has an unfortunate familiarity with death in his adult life. His mother and father each died unexpectedly within four months of each other in 2009.

As a member of the Tennessee Highway Patrol (THP), he served many death notices to families that lost loved ones. Going beyond his duty as an officer of the law, Lowell often remained in contact with victims’ families for months, assisting with arrangements and offering support.

“I’ve made it a personal goal to try and attend every funeral of any vehicle fatality I’ve worked in my career to support the families in their time of grief,” said Lowell.

But his generosity goes beyond mere attendance. His presence and actions have helped shaped the lives of many.

In 2011, a THP trooper attempted to pull over a young 20-year-old man. The young man was drunk and tried to flee, eventually crashing his car into a tree 15 feet from the road. According to reports, the trooper drove past the initial scene of the crash, claiming that he had lost sight of the vehicle.

Lowell was on the young man’s front porch shortly after the wreck, serving a death notice to his father. The particular interaction stuck with his father.

“I was seeing pain in his face, as he saw pain in mine,” said the father of the victim.

The victim’s father now gives speeches to public school children on the value of taking responsibility. The death of his son could have been avoided by making better decisions. But it was Sgt. Russell’s actions that inspired him.

Dashboard cameras confirmed that the trooper drove past the young man’s car, not stopping to check on the driver. Lowell would present that tape to THP Internal Affairs, offering evidence against a senior officer. The trooper, who had been involved in a similar incident one year earlier, was fired by the THP.

The victim’s father admires Lowell for “doing the right thing,” although it was something that could have negatively affected the trooper’s career.

“If the Lowell Russell story never came out, I would not be giving speeches,” he said. “He is a hero.”

Lowell’s story has been detailed in local and national news stories for more than three years now. The near-unbelievable timing of paramedics, police, and ordinary citizens that saved his life was described by the Knoxville Police Department’s Chief, David Rausch, as “divine intervention.”

The burnt car, exploding ammunition, and unlikely box cutter are all detailed in his book, Trial by Fire. Lowell had no interest in writing the biography until he realized its potential. Every dollar earned from book sales are donated to the LCpl Frankie Watson Memorial Scholarship Fund, named after a young man whom Lowell had mentored. The fund provides money each year for one Sequoyah High School (Monroe County) graduate to attend college to train for a career in public service.

The relationship between Lowell and Frankie was forged in 2004 when Lowell gave the 14-year-old rides to football practice, letting him sleep in his guest bedroom when early practices required 6 am attendance. Frankie would go on to graduate high school and join the United States Marines.

Along with Frankie’s parents, Lowell was on the notification list in case of his friend’s injury or death. On September 24, 2011, the trooper was told to return home when he arrived at work. On that day, it was Lowell who was informed by representatives from the Marine Corps that the Marine that he helped raise was dead – killed by an enemy sniper’s bullet in Afghanistan.

“I just wanted to get Frankie’s story out,” said Lowell.

Lowell’s book is his way of paying tribute to Frankie, as well as all fallen members of the military and law enforcement.

Through all his struggles, Lowell has been able to find hope and gain perspective during times of despair. The former THP officer credits his religious faith in finding strength when faced with such tragic events, knowing there is a reason for the obstacles.

“God is always preparing us for bigger trials down the road,” said Lowell.

Lowell’s past has shaped every decision he makes and story he tells. But tragedies do not define his future. His faith will not allow that. Instead, Lowell will continue strengthening his voice – readying it for the next opportunity to tell the tales of heroes.

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CertaPro Painters

CertaPro Painters

Much More Than Knoxville Area’s Most Trusted and Referred Residential Painters
Earning a surprising 98% customer approval/referral rating and several Angie’s List Super Service awards, you might think that CertaPro Painters of East Tennessee has earned a reputation as the area’s most trusted and referred residential painters. While this is true, what you may not know is that CertaPro Painters of East Tennessee also established a reputation for a wide variety of other home renovation, repair, and remodeling services, including carpentry, deck restoration, pressure washing, drywall, staining, wallpapering, and wallpaper removal. CertaPro Painters of East Tennessee also offers area business office/retail business owners, schools, churches, healthcare facilities, managed properties, and more a full line of commercial painting services.

With the addition of all of these to their full array of interior and exterior painting services, CertaPro Painters of East Tennessee offers area homeowners a complete turn-key solution for many of their home’s renovation, repair, and remodeling needs. Everything Knoxville is excited to share with its readers an interview with CertaPro Painters of East Tennessee’s owners, and husband and wife team, Jeff and Joann Brown.

EK: Jeff, how would you describe the CertaPro difference?

Jeff: We strive to operate like a world-class service company! There is a perception in our industry that it is difficult to find a truly good contractor or painting company. As we speak, I have two project managers and four painting supervisors in a service training session in our training room. We spend a lot of time and resources training and coaching our painting crews, not just in application methods, but in customer service. We are deeply committed to meeting and exceeding customer expectations! In order to accomplish that, we are constantly learning and training with information provided by customer feedback and interaction.

EK: You insist on personally providing your residential customers with comprehensive proposals on the spot and a rapid turnaround on commercial proposals. Tell our readers why this is so important and how this differs from the typical customer experience.

Joann: We believe it is important while the scope of work and project is fresh in everyone’s minds to enter the proposal in the computer and print a detailed proposal on the spot and review in person with the customer carefully to ensure accuracy. Others may email you a brief estimate days later with little detail, leaving you uncertain of what is included or not included. It takes the guesswork out!

EK: How does your pricing compare to competitive pricing?

Jeff: There is a misconception sometimes that as a professional company, we may be a little high. In fact, we frequently hear from our customers “oh, you are in line with the solo guy” or “that is less than what I was expecting.” We work hard to ensure our prices are competitive while providing a level of service above the competition! In addition, we are, in fact, licensed, bonded, insured, and have a two-year residential written warranty!

EK: How have you been able to earn Angie’s List esteemed Super Service of the Year awards, as well as a 98% customer approval rating?

Joann: We have understood since day one that the successful way to build and grow our company was to do whatever it takes within reason to meet and exceed customer expectations. Further, that word of mouth was the most powerful form of advertising. So, we have a mission to create customers for life and know that if we practice this business philosophy, the great scores will come!

EK: Tell our readers about several of the services you provide homeowners in addition to quality interior and exterior painting.

Jeff: We have been methodical and strategic to add services and value to our customers throughout the years as our competence levels increased at all levels of our organization. Early on we started repairing rotten wood on home exteriors. During the past 12 years, we have added many services to include deck build/rebuild, screen porch additions, interior trim carpentry, and custom built-ins to tile work and interior remodeling. We now can do most anything in the “home improvement” category well. We certainly offer other services and are happy to review them on the phone with potential customers.

EK: Describe your unique five-step interior and exterior painting process and how that varies from what most competitors offer.

Jeff: Our purpose is to ensure our customers get the same risk-free experience every time they utilize our services. So, our first step is to review the scope of work with the customer and the crew the morning the project starts to ensure we are all on the same page. Second, we set up the area to be painted/repaired and ensure furniture is moved, drop cloths are down, plastic covers things as needed, and the general “set up” is complete. The third phase is to perform any prep work (drywall repair, sanding, rotten wood replacement, etc.). The fourth step is when we actually start the painting or improvement project, and finally, we clean up, have the customer inspect with the crew, and collect our payment!

EK: Joann, how does your commercial business unit process vary from your residential unit?

Joann: Depending on the type of property, some businesses need painting done monthly, so you develop a partnership with your customer. You might see them monthly or quarterly. They know they can depend on us to take care of whatever their needs may be and in the time frame they need. On a residential job, you might paint for a customer every four or five years, so you don’t see them as often. That is why we are excited to offer additional services besides painting. Homeowners are usually doing some sort of remodeling or home improvement, and we can help with most of those projects. Whether you are adding a deck or remodeling a bathroom, we can take care of that project for you.

EK: You are committed to a goal of improving and exceeding your customers’ expectations. Explain.

Jeff: Joann and I have been in some sort of service business our entire lives, so we grew up professionally in a very competitive service industry. We learned early on that the ONLY way to grow and keep our business healthy is to surround ourselves with people who understand that and take pride in what they do. Our two main goals every day is to meet and exceed customers’ expectations and to practice continuous improvement at every level. We are lucky to have a very dedicated and professional team at CertaPro!

EK: How important do you feel it is that both of you are engaged in your business full time each and every day?

Joann: Our staff at CertaPro is remarkable, but Jeff and I both enjoy being involved in the day-to-day business. We like meeting our customers and helping with their individual needs.

EK: How can our readers learn more about CertaPro Painters of East Tennessee?

Jeff: Our estimates for painting and home improvement are free and with no obligations. Our team is very well-trained in most every aspect of the business, so the best way to learn is to call CertaPro and schedule a consultation/estimate appointment at a time that is convenient for you.

EK: In closing, is there anything you would like to add?

Jeff: First of all, we would like to express our appreciation to all of our customers for their support and encouragement. As our company has grown throughout the years, our ability to give back to the community has grown as well in many ways. For instance, this winter we were privileged to have participated in a Homes for Our Troops new home build in our area. HFOT is a wonderful organization that provides mortgage-free, specially adapted homes nationwide for severely injured veterans post 9/11, enabling them to rebuild their lives. When we got the call to help, as a veteran myself, I did not let the woman even finish asking if we could donate all the painting services before I said “yes, and when can we start?” I was asked to speak at the key ceremony and felt so privileged to do so and give back in a small way to a veteran who had sacrificed so much for our great country! We believe it is our company’s obligation to continue to seek ways to give back to our community.

CertaPro Painters of East Tennessee

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The Village Exchange

The Village Exchange

The Village Exchange

Located at the top of Bearden Hill, The Village Exchange is an eclectic collection of talented area retailers and regional artists. The ideal venue for discerning shoppers searching for that “just so” perfect gift, home décor item, the latest fashion statement or art piece, The Village Exchange will be sure to inspire you.
Every item at The Village Exchange is thoughtfully merchandised in colorful vignettes that both highlight the unique features of each item and inspire the designer within each of us. You’ll discover furniture, lighting, home accessories, apparel, jewelry, handbags, baby and children’s gifts, pottery, linens, and gourmet items. And the list continues.

All located under one roof, The Village Exchange is the creative collaboration of longtime Knoxville area residents and entrepreneurs, Frank and Kim Rolfes.

“The Village Exchange was designed to provide a very unique, one-of-a-kind shopping affair unlike anything else in the area,” says Kim. “We wanted to simplify the local shopping experience, similar to other big city trends, by selectively choosing top retailers and designers that would provide a special, one-stop shopping destination.”
The Village Exchange’s list of retailers includes:

Antiques & Accents – A longtime Knoxville interiors favorite, Swann Jaffurs brings a wonderful selection of lighting and unique tables for the home.

L & L Design House – Laura Leonard and Leighann Madden offer a retail vignette to show off their design skills. Specializing in interior design, they offer a rotating selection of the best for your home.

Lollypops – Laura Forrester provides the best of baby and children’s gifts beautifully wrapped and ready to give to the littlest ones in your life. From brands such as Kissy Kissy and Beaufort Bonnet to unique children’s toys, including bath games, puzzles, and board books, these are some of the special items you won’t find at other retailers in town.

Michael Peters Home – In addition to his flagship Bearden location, Michael’s space affords one-of-a-kind home accessories and furniture, gifts, and exclusive candles.

Modern Wardrobe Style – Meagan Puckett provides the best in women’s apparel, jewelry, handbags, and fashion accessories in her space. Have a closet full of nothing to wear? Meagan also specializes in in-home Wardrobe Style Consultations.

On A Pedestal – Ann Styron brings wonderful finds to your tabletop with Italian-made pottery, linens, and gifts at a variety of price points. Ann also specializes in fresh floral arrangements.

O.P. Jenkins – This long established, charming Knoxville favorite offers the best of home furnishings and accessories, showcasing a spattering of items to entice customers to their 30,000 square foot store downtown.

Phantom Chef – Sue Dilworth and Neill Townsend market gifts for every foodie, including gourmet olive oil, specialty vinegars, pottery, tabletop gifts, and homemade treats. They also take special orders!

Thistle Do – Kim Rolfes offers antiques, designer jewelry, original paintings, handmade pottery, and seasonal décor for the home. Currently, four regional artists are represented in the shop.

If you are in search of a truly unique shopping experience designed for even the most discerning shopper, please visit The Village Exchange, located on Bearden Hill next to Calhoun’s. They are open from 10 am to 5 pm Tuesdays through Saturdays.

The Village Exchange
6513 Kingston Pike, Suite 104
Knoxville, TN 37919

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