Gloria Freeman, founder and chief executive officer of Olu’s Home, Inc. and Olu’s Center, was chosen as Minnesota’s Small Business Person of the Year by the U.S. Small Business Administration for her personal achievements and contributions to her community. In addition to attending an awards ceremony locally on May 4, she has been invited to join winners from all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Guam and the U.S. Virgin Islands for ceremonies on May 1-2 to receive her individual award and be there for the naming of the 2016 National Small Business Person of the Year.

The Small Business Person of the Year is selected based on growth in sales or unit volume, increase in the number of employees, financial strength, innovativeness of product or service and evidence of contributions to community-oriented projects.

Freeman’s desire to serve those in her community is rooted in her childhood. Her mother was a prominent public speaker and advocate for the mentally ill. In 1999 Freeman founded Olu’s Home, a licensed care organization that provides residential and in-home services to the elderly and persons with developmental disabilities and mental illness. Today, the company operates 11 group homes and has more than 100 employees in the Minneapolis area. Working with health and social services professionals, she began providing a holistic, integrated menu of services to support each client’s physical, mental, social, and spiritual needs.

“I believe that we all have the right to live a holistic life, work hard, make time to enjoy, and never forget to give back,” said Freeman.

Her newest business venture began last year when she opened the intergenerational care center, Olu’s Center, which provides a day program for children and seniors where they can interact with each other.

Freeman is a contributor to Girls in Action, North Minneapolis Rotary Club member, Hennepin Theatre Trust Board Member, Minnesota Black Chamber of Commerce Board Member, and participates in activities with Meda, UNCF, UROC and others.


Lawrence Kerzne has joined Camden Care Center team as its new medical director. Kerzner is certified in both internal and geriatric medicine by the American Board of Internal Medicine, and has served as a fellow of the American College of Physicians and the American Geriatrics Society. He attended Georgetown University medical school and completed his residency in internal medicine at Boston University.

“As a regionally and nationally renowned leader in the field of geriatric medicine, we are very pleased to welcome Dr. Kerzner to Camden Care Center,” said Mary Ann Hamer, executive director at Camden Care Center. “His expertise will enable us to provide increased expert, quality care to our residents and community.”

Camden Care Center is an 87-bed skilled nursing and rehabilitation facility that has been a vital long term care and rehabilitation resource on the Northside for many years. Under Dr. Kerzner’s leadership, Camden will work to further elevate its strengths in short-term rehabilitation and long-term care, with specializations in pulmonary, cardio, orthopedics and memory care.


Join the Minnesota Youth Symphonies (MYS) at Orchestra Hall, 1111 Nicollet Mall, on Sunday, May 1 at 6:30 p.m. for a concert showcasing all four MYS orchestras and featuring Symphony Solo Competition Winner, John-Paul Shoemaker. James Lileks, Star Tribune columnist, author and radio personality will host the concert. John-Paul Shoemaker will perform the Viola Concerto, 3rd Movement by Béla Bartók and prepared by Tibor Serly.

John-Paul Shoemaker, son of Marie Kim and Joel Shoemaker, currently studies with Richard Marshall, co-principal violist of the Minnesota Orchestra. Previous teachers were Sally O’Reilly and Elizabeth Cregan. In the 2011-2012 school year, J-P studied viola at the Conservatiore de Lyon in Lyon, France, with Stéphane Marcel. He also worked with Laurent Bruni and Yannick Callier in France. He performed at the Théâtre Gallo-Romain de Fourvière and the Salle Molière in Lyon. J-P has been a member of MYS since 2007, playing in the Symphony Orchestra since 2012. His quartet, the Vesper String Quartet, won the First Prize in the 2016 Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra Youth Chamber Music Competition and is a 2016 Featured Artist in MPR’s Minnesota Varsity. J-P plans to pursue a degree in Viola Performance. Concert tickets:

Congratulations to Camden college graduates. Amit Mehra earned a Master of Organization Leadership from University of Northwestern-St. Paul. From Pacific University: Sarah Baer graduated with a Doctoral in Optometry and Carsten Paulson got his Master’s in Physician Assistant Studies. Caitlin Jensen earned a BA in Fashion & Retail Management from the Art Institutes International Minnesota.

Congratulations to Camden students making the Luther College Dean’s List: Claire Eichhorn, Elizabeth Glennon, Elisabeth Hartmark, Michael Moore, Jonathan Opdahl, Jane Pena, Christopher Porter, Timothy Radermacher, Maxwell Uetz and Adam Ulring.

Know of a noteworthy neighbor? We don’t know unless you tell us. Send the info to