Computhink Named Among 30 Most Innovative Companies to Watch 2017

Insights Success Magazine has announced Computhink among 2017’s Thirty Most Innovative Companies to Watch. Insights Success is a business solutions magazine that focuses distinctively on emerging as well as leading companies, their unique style of doing business, and collaborative solutions to strengthen the marketplace. Inclusion in this year’s list comes from Computhink’s continued progress as an industry leader and technology provider.

2017 marks another banner year for Computhink, as shown by their expansions as a digital solutions provider. While they transform business environments for their clients, they too transform to stay ahead of the market, including the integration of their digital marketing services with their enterprise line.

The centerpiece of this recognition is Computhink’s always evolving Enterprise Content Management system, Contentverse. With an enduring dedication to versatility for their growing user base, clients continue to find new uses for Contentverse throughout their organizations. In sales, marketing, human resources, administration, finance, information technology, and other additional areas, their ECM makes waves of change.

The company’s place in the magazine includes an article on the current state of Computhink, including a focus on their six areas of greatest innovation: deployment flexibility, comprehensive security, complete content access, the versatile and powerful viewer, big data analysis capabilities, and their intelligent workflow. In an industry that ages and evolves every year, Computhink keeps pace with these up-to-date elements: While some companies may call them features, to Computhink, they are an integral part of the absolute ECM experience every organization needs.

Insights Success is distributed to diverse readership of over 65,000 CIOs, CTOs, and technology developers in software, e-commerce, manufacturing, healthcare, media, and banking & finance. You can read the article on Computhink’s innovations here and check out their solutions here.

Setting the Right Expectations for Chatbots

Armies of “digital workers” are poised to take over the front lines with customers, but they need rigorously organized data to perform well, and often a helping hand, say experts at Earley Information Science roundtable

The numbers are very real even if the workers are virtual. Spending on Enterprise Intelligent Assistants, aka chatbots, is now exceeding $1 billion a year and is expected to grow to $4.5 billion by 2021, according to Opus Research. And a recent survey of 100 information management professionals found that 51% are getting ready to put chatbots to work with customers. 

But it is still early days in the development of artificial intelligence (AI), and companies have to be realistic about the kind of work that chatbots can, and can’t, handle, and the support they need to be effective, according to a panel of AI and knowledge management experts at an Executive Roundtable discussion hosted on March 29 by Earley Information Science Corp. (EIS), a leading consulting firm focused on organizing information for business impact.

The data that is the chatbot’s lifeblood has to be structured in a way that is fully compatible with a company’s business, humans still have to help out, and tasks that involve a lot of context and nuance may be out of a chatbot’s reach, at least for now. That said, digital workers are already earning their keep, and are taking on more and more responsibilities as they get “smarter,” the panelists said, adding that companies would do well to go on a hiring spree so long as their expectations are properly set.    

Chatbots “are evolving very very quickly,” said Seth Earley, founder and Chief Executive Officer of EIS. “But right now they are not necessarily easy to use. There is no magic – chatbots require human intervention and knowledge engineering. They are an access mechanism to get to information,” which has to be carefully collected and organized so that the bots can understand and accomplish their tasks and learn new ones.

The roundtable discussion, “Digital Workers, Chatbots and Customer Service: Reality Versus Aspiration,” was led by David Hatch, Senior Vice President for Marketing at EIS. Besides Seth Earley, the panel included Tom Davenport, a professor of information technology and management at Babson College and author of “Only Humans Need Apply: Winners and Losers in the Age of Smart Machines”; Dan Miller, Lead Analyst and Founder of Opus Research; and Mark Beccue, Principal Analyst at Tractica.

The discussion was the first of a four-part EIS series, “The Age of the Chatbot Is Coming: Are You Ready?” with new roundtables set for April 12, April 26 and May 10 (details below). EIS held a related roundtable in January, “Virtual Assistants and Chatbots: The Next Big Thing in Customer Experience.” 

At this stage of bot development, companies should target “low-hanging fruit” to start out, Tom Davenport suggested, noting that so-called transformational projects involving bots that are pushed down from the top have a low success rate, particularly if the company is the first in its industry to make such a big move.

The shift to digital workers “may well have a devastating impact on the job market in the future,” but right now, Davenport said, there is little job loss and no pure automation. “It’s a hybrid machine/human process.” The highest return on investment (ROI) is coming from the most prosaic applications and technologies, such as robotic process automation (RPA), and not from layoffs.

As companies bring in bots, they should find the speediest ways to produce some business results while keeping an eye on costs, said Opus Research’s Dan Miller. Think about what works out of the box, but also factor in the ongoing expenses for professional services to collect, organize and reshape the data. Try to leverage existing resources, including key data, operational personnel and subject matter experts. And, of course, figure out the right tools for development, analytics and reporting, including metrics to track success and failure.

“Some fairly complex implementations are already out there,” Miller said. In some cases, bots “can do more than just low-hanging fruit.”

What are the “compelling market drivers” that are opening the market to chatbots?

Tractica’s Mark Beccue noted consumer desire for 24/7 support and self-service and an aversion to live interactions. The use cases are also expanding – into financial services, for example, with the onboarding of new customers and automated wealth advisors, and into healthcare, with coaching services for patients with long-term illness.

Chatbots will not be taking over the world any time soon, Beccue said. Advances are being made in understanding language, “but AI will continue to be challenged by the context of human speech.” (Consider this statement: “I would kill for a cookie.”)

For now, at least, the trend is toward seamless handoffs from bots to live agents when the task, or the language, becomes too difficult for the bot to handle – and back to the bot when it makes sense.   

The goal, in these early days of the era of the smart machines, Beccue said, is for “chatbots to live in harmony with live agents.”

The roundtable featured a real-time survey of the webinar attendees:  

  • Nearly a fifth of the respondents, or 18%, said that bots are a major priority (supported by funding and executive buy-in) and 37% said they are important but still require a business case. Almost half, or 45%, said bots are not a priority at this time.
  • None of the attendees has been using bots for more than a year, but 6% have recently launched their first wave to deal with customers, 27% have begun testing in one area of the business, another 10% are testing the business case and more than half, or 54%, are starting to investigate how they can use bots.
  • When asked where chatbots are now being deployed at their companies, 36% cited customer/member service, making it the leading application. IT help desk/tech support accounted for 15% and selling in digital commerce 13%.

Please use these links to access the roundtable and EIS resources about chatbots and AI.

Finally, here are details for the upcoming one-hour roundtables in the chatbot series, all live at 1 p.m. (Eastern) and recorded for later access:

April 12 – The Role of Intelligent Virtual Assistants in Healthcare: How virtual assistants can help solve the “adherence gap” and more

May 10 – How Financial Services Organizations Are Using Chatbots in Customer Service: Going beyond basic banking transactions to meet the needs of new audiences

June 7 – Conversational Commerce and Virtual Sales Assistants: How the age of the virtual sales agent is changing the face of commerce

To register for any of these webinars, contact Sharon Foley, at sharon.foley@earley.com

 

 

Healthcare Products LLC Commits to Donating a Portion of GPS Watch Sales to The Alzheimer’s Association®

The company will donate $30 from every MX-LOCare™ GPS Watch sold through the Association’s Website

 

April 14, 2017—Healthcare Products LLC dba The Alzheimer’s Store is proud to announce a new cause marketing relationship with the Alzheimer’s Association®. Through March 14, 2018, The Alzheimer’s Store will donate $30 to the Alzheimer’s Association for each MX-LOCare™ GPS Watch sold through the Association’s website or (alz.org/watch). The Alzheimer’s Store is committing a minimum donation of $25,000 in the cause marketing campaign.

   

MX-LOCare™ GPS Watch by Adiant Mobile is equipped with GPS technology, allowing caregivers of people living with Alzheimer’s to monitor someone under their care in the event that the person wanders or gets lost. It’s estimated that six out of 10 people living with dementia will wander at some during the course of the disease.

 

“This device is a lifesaver for those living with Alzheimer’s and the people who care for them,” said Bruce Barnet, managing director of Healthcare Products LLC. “Even just the peace of mind it provides is priceless. You hope you never have to use it, but you’ll be glad you have it in the event that you do. It could end up saving your loved one’s life.”

 

The MX-LOCare™ GPS Watch features an SOS panic button that can be activated and used anywhere there is consistent GPS service, and includes two-way open voice communication, giving people with Alzheimer’s the ability to communicate with loved ones. Caregivers can also program a safe zone area and receive alerts when someone under their care leaves specified boundaries.

 

The watch currently retails for $159.99 and comes in black, blue and pink. No-contract monthly service plans start at $29.99 per month, which includes a voice/data cellular plan, unlimited notification alerts, and unlimited one-minute location tracking updates. 

 

Healthcare Products LLC’s online retail store, The Alzheimer’s Store, has provided memory loss patients and their caregivers with top-of-the-line care products for the past six years. The family-owned business is the largest provider of products specifically for Alzheimer’s and other related dementias in the United States and Canada and prides itself on the personal service and advice they provide their community.

 

“Philanthropy is a consistent part of our philosophy, so this new partnership with the Alzheimer’s Association really aligns with our companies’ mission and values. It’s just one of the ways we show our dedication to the Alzheimer’s community,” Barnet said.

 

“Adiant Mobile is pleased to participate and assist the Alzheimer’s Store in this incredible cause marketing program that allows our organizations to give back to the Alzheimer’s community,” says Lou Cosentino, Managing Partner of Adiant Mobile.

 

The Alzheimer’s Store is proud to join the Alzheimer’s Association as a cause marketing strategic partner. Proceeds from the campaign will support the mission of the Alzheimer’s Association to  eliminate Alzheimer’s disease through the advancement of research; to provide and enhance care and support for all affected; and to reduce the risk of dementia through the promotion of brain health.

 

The contribution from each sale is not tax deductible. The Alzheimer’s Association does not endorse any of The Alzheimer’s Store products. Alzheimer’s Store will not receive any compensation from the Alzheimer’s Association for or relating to this promotion.

 

SHERPA Sustainability Institute Announces Summer Term Scholarships Available for Military Veterans and Other Deserving Professionals

Gain Breakthrough Skills and Valuable Credential in Certified CISR® Practitioner Course – Continual Improvement for Social Responsibility

As part of its B-Corp Charter, SHERPA Sustainability Institute provides gratis seats to military veterans and other deserving professionals, to gain breakthrough skills in CISR® – Continual Improvement for Social Responsibility. The project-based, online Certified CISR® Practitioner Course is 14 weeks of instruction, with personalized, one-on-one, expert coaching.

Nominations for scholarships are easy:

1. Visit SherpaSustainabilityInstitute.com
2. Watch 5-Minute Video for Details
3. Complete Simple 4-Step Nomination Form

Summer Term starts May 29 and Nomination Deadline is May 7. 

The course curriculum is based on the textbook “A Six Sigma Approach to Sustainability: Continual Improvement for Social Responsibility”, which has received numerous endorsements.

In this complex world, it is refreshing to know that there is a coherent and instructive guide available to achieve long term success that can be used by any organization. Everything that the organization, its members, and its external stakeholders need to ensure sustainable success can be found between the covers…”

?Robert B. Pojasek, PhD
Harvard University

Co-author, Andrea Hoffmeier shares that all participants, including scholarship recipients, receive a complimentary textbook.

About the CISR® Methodology
Continual Improvement for Social Responsibility
CISR (sounds like scissor) is a rigorous methodology for improving SR Performance, as a pathway to Sustainability, similar to Six Sigma being a methodology for improving quality.

View the ASQ TV Interview to Learn More 

Scholarship recipients join a learning community of professionals from major corporations, government agencies, military, non-profits, and NGOs. Self-nominations are welcome.
All Candidates receive 14 weeks of expert instruction, a complimentary textbook, weekly workbooks and other support materials, as well as personalized, 1:1 coaching, to complete their project and achieve certification. 7.4 CEUs are also earned.

Here’s what past participants have to say:
“This course has been the only source of practical content for improving Social Responsibility I have found.  Until I began working on the CISR Certification, I was not fully aware of the power of strategic thinking in the realm of social responsibility.”
Billy Ingram – Certified CISR® Practitioner & Coach
Director of Lean Product Development
Interface

“This is not just an online course where you’re out on your own.  The coaching I received helped hold me accountable, so I made progress every week. I’ve really enjoyed the discussion boards, as well as networking with other participants and instructors.”
Brion Hurley – Certified CISR® Practitioner & Coach
Lean Six Sigma Master Black Belt
Rockwell Collins

Example Certified CISR® Practitioner Projects
Consumer Issues
New Manufacturing Method Communications Launch
Optimized success of new product launch, through strategic sales and marketing aimed to clearly communicating benefits and educate consumers.
Improved Product Information & Education
Increased sales of healthier snack choices in vending outlets, by providing access nutrition information.

Employee Engagement & Organizational Effectiveness
Improved Roles & Responsibilities Descriptions/Definitions
Elimination of ambiguity and duplicate efforts elevated job satisfaction and team effectiveness.
Enhanced Employee Recognition Program
Aligning rewards and recognition with employee preferences improved job satisfaction and performance.

Environment, Health & Safety
Hazardous Materials Handling Improvements
Mitigation of risks related to handling of highly flammable materials used in solar energy manufacturing process.

Scholarship FAQs
Q: Can I nominate myself?
A: Yes! SHERPA welcomes self-nominations for either the Veterans or Coaches Scholarship   

Q: What is the Coaches Scholarship? 
A: These are Gratis Seats for deserving professionals who are interested in CISR Practitioner Certification and do not have employer sponsorship to register.  It is named the Coaches Scholarship because the Institute’s CISR® Coaches select the recipients from nominations.

Q: What if Nominee is not employed and does not have an organization for their project? 
A: Participants do not have to complete projects with an employer. Organizations in the local community, such as school, municipal departments, clubs, house of worship and more, are excellent options for project completion.   

Q: When are nominations due? 
A: Summer Term nominations are due May 7th.

Q: When does class start? 
A: Monday, May 29 is Orientation Week for Summer Term.

Visit www.SherpaSustainabilityInstitute.com for registration and nomination information.

 

Interested in registering your team for the course? Email Info@SherpaSustainabilityInstitute.com for group rates and closed cohorts.

Wyndham Worldwide Honors Wyndham Lake Buena Vista Disney Springs™ for Excellence

[Lake Buena Vista, FL. April 13, 2017] – The Wyndham Lake Buena Vista Disney Springs™, an official Walt Disney World Resort Hotel, today received the Award for being a “Best of Wyndham Hotels”.  This prestigious honor recognizes Excellence within the Wyndham Brand.

“This is an incredible award for our team, and a direct result of our guest service commitment and ‘can do’ culture” said Jay Leonard, General Manager of the Wyndham LBV Disney Springs™ Resort. “I am equally proud of our recent introduction of the Wyndham Garden Lake Buena Vista.  Our Wyndham Garden is connected to the Wyndham, located on the same acreage and shares all the same amenities as the upscale 19-story tower at even more value-minded price.”

The Wyndham Garden Lake Buena Vista Springs, has become a favorite of Wyndham Rewards members and includes 394 guestroom accommodations comprising 330 rooms with two double beds and 64 rooms with one king bed.

Both Wyndham properties are Official Walt Disney World® Hotels, located in the Walt Disney World® Resort. As such, continuous shuttle service to all four Walt Disney World® Theme Parks is available. A Disney Character Breakfast is featured three days a week, and an on-site Disney Store is offered for those seeking souvenirs and Disney Theme Park tickets. Walt Disney World® Theme Park admissions can also be purchased online through the hotel website or by visiting the Guest Services Desk in the tower lobby.

Guests of each hotel have plenty of activities to enjoy at the resort. The Oasis Aquatic Pool Playground features two pools with many interactive water attractions for children, a hot tub and an abundant amount of space to stretch out in the Florida sun. The Oasis Bar & Grill, located poolside, is perfect for cooling off and refueling for the next adventure. The resort also offers a state-of-the-art fitness center, along with tennis, basketball and sand volleyball courts.

With the recent re-imagination of the 12,000-square foot grand ballroom in the tower, a $10 million-dollar renovation was completed, giving the resort a total of 21 function rooms and a total of 25,000 square feet of meeting space ideal for corporate travelers, groups and associations.

The 19-story Wyndham Lake Buena Vista Disney Springs tower features 232 guestroom accommodations, including seven parlor suites, 42 rooms with one king bed and 183 rooms with two queen beds.

A lake house retreat concept ties together the tower’s redesign while lobby space is energized with a fresh, neutral color palette accented by vibrant turquoise and pops of chartreuse. Distressed wood paneling, white granite, custom wood screens and bead board paneling are a few of the finish details that are now incorporated into the lobby. The concept extends throughout the public spaces – from Sundial Café to the Eclipse Lobby Lounge to the Lakeview Restaurant.

The textures and patterns selected for the tower guest rooms and suites are reminiscent of those found in nature. Custom case goods and lighting, plush seating in neutral-toned upholstery fabrics, luxurious pillow-top bedding and modern bathroom fixtures are all just part of the numerous upgrades to the hotel.

Both Wyndham hotels are adjacent to Lake Buena Vista and have gorgeous water views. The guest rooms and suites in the tower offer guests a true sanctuary with generously appointed accommodations and all the amenities that could be found in a Central Florida vacation lake house.

Media Contact:    George McNeilly

                             407.791.6851                                  george@mcneillycommunications.com

Bodies in Beds: Why Business Should Stay Out of Prisons

Press Release

New Book Criticizes Private Prison Industry

For Immediate Release                                                                       Contact: Sue Binder

April 10, 2017                                                                                       csbinder@hotmail.com

 

Bodies in Beds: Why Business Should Stay Out of Prisons takes on the private prison industry’s thirst for profit at the expense of offenders, taxpayers, and staff. The author contends that the private prison industry is only interested in maximizing the number of people it has in prisons, not in rehabilitating them—hence the title—Bodies in Beds.

 

Author Sue Binder examines the issue of privatization from her perspective of thirteen years working as a mental health coordinator in a private prison. She focuses on the failure of the system to provide adequate treatment and successfully integrate inmates back into society, including the suicidal potential of inmates who do not get adequate attention.

 

Bodies in Beds takes the reader from the birth of the first private prison, founded by Corrections Corporation of American (now CivicCore) up through the current status of privatized prisons under the Trump administration.

 

Using a combination of personal experiences and research, Binder analyzes topics such as safety and security issues for offenders and staff; the huge salaries of the corporation’s chief officers versus employee salaries; and the growing importance of immigration profits for the private prison industry.

 

In addition, the book reviews the functional structure of the privatized prison with its sole emphasis on profits and lack of attention to staff safety. This is exemplified in the inability of the mental health staff to actually provide counseling or therapy due to insufficient staff and time constraints. It also describes the influence of the privatized industry’s lobbying and strategies for negotiating contracts with states.

 

Alex Friedmann, associate director of the Human Rights Defense Center and managing editor of Prison Legal News, stated that his only criticism of the book is that “the author should have resigned from her position with CCA and released this account much sooner.”

Binder, a Licensed Professional Counselor and a Licensed Addiction Counselor, has more than forty years’ experience in the counseling field. She wrote this book to reveal how privatized prisons do not meet the needs of inmates and cheat staff but are loyal to their shareholders.

Published by Algora Publishing, Bodies in Beds, 244 pp. and is available through Amazon or directly from the publisher in paperback,$21.95; hardbound, $31.95; and e-book, $21.95. For more information, visit http://www.algora.com/522/book/details/html.

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Chevron’s False Evidence In Ecuador Pollution Case Presented to U.S. Supreme Court

WASHINGTON, D.C., April 4 – Ecuadorian rainforest villagers and their longtime U.S. human rights lawyer have presented proof of Chevron’s bribes, false evidence, and fraud to the U.S. Supreme Court as part of a petition to try to overturn an unprecedented RICO decision by controversial U.S. trial judge Lewis A. Kaplan.

The U.S. Supreme Court petition is of limited impact in that the Ecuadorian villagers and their lawyer, Steven R. Donziger, are already moving rapidly to enforce the $9.5 billion Ecuador judgment against Chevron’s assets in Canada and Brazil. In 2015, Canada’s Supreme Court unanimously rejected Chevron’s attempt to use Kaplan’s RICO decision to block the case in that country.

The U.S. Supreme Court petition, filed by Donziger’s lawyer Deepak Gupta, is available here.  It will take at least several weeks for the Court to determine whether it will grant a full review of the case, which would require additional briefing and argument. Chevron is being represented by appellate lawyer Theodore B. Olson, a former Solicitor General of the United States who is purported to be the highest-billing lawyer in the United States with some clients paying an estimated $5,000 per hour for his services.

Chevron has an estimated $25 billion of assets in Canada including oil fields and refineries, or more than enough to pay for the entirety of the Ecuador judgment.  Interest on the judgment under Canadian law has increased Chevron’s liability to an estimated $12 billion.  A trial to determine when Chevron must pay the full judgment is expected to begin in Toronto in the coming months.  

In the request for U.S. Supreme Court review, Gupta explained that the Kaplan ruling was based largely on false testimony from an admittedly corrupt witness to whom Chevron paid a $2 million bribe – including $38,000 in cash out of a backpack — and a myriad of other benefits. That witness, Alberto Guerra, later admitted that he lied during the Kaplan proceeding when he manufactured a story that a bribe was paid to the Ecuador trial judge.  (See here and here for more background on Guerra’s lies and perjury.)

Separately, Guerra falsely testified before Kaplan that lawyers for the villagers “ghostwrote” the judgment against Chevron and gave it to the trial judge on a flash drive just before it was issued.  However, a subsequent forensic examination of the trial judge’s computer, performed at Chevron’s insistence under the auspices of an international arbitration proceeding, completely disproved the allegation by showing the trial judge created a Word document that became the judgment and saved it more than 400 times in the weeks leading up to its issuance.  The Second Circuit refused to consider the evidence before essentially rubber-stamping Kaplan’s erroneous trial court findings, according to Gupta. 

Donziger has blasted Chevron for “using obviously false evidence” to try to frame the lawyers who held the company accountable for its environmental crimes committed against indigenous groups and other residents in Ecuador’s Amazon.  “It is our view that Kaplan and the Second Circuit owe the people of Ecuador an apology for their refusing to consider evidence that blows up Chevron’s false narrative,” said Donziger.  “This is an ongoing stain on the American judiciary in the eyes of the world and it will not go away unless and until the Supreme Court acts.”

Kaplan, who refused to seat a jury for the RICO trial and who repeatedly made ill-considered comments from the bench that were considered racist by the Ecuadorians and many observers, credited Guerra’s highly suspect testimony even though it was riddled with inconsistencies. Kaplan also refused to hear any of the voluminous environmental evidence relied on by three layers of courts in Ecuador to find Chevron liable for dumping 16 billion of gallons of toxic oil waste into the rainforest.  In the RICO case, Chevron simply conceded the fact of its toxic dumping in the rainforest as a way to avoid a public airing of incriminating internal documents that corroborate the voluminous evidence of oil contamination – contained in 105 technical evidentiary reports — presented to the Ecuador court. 

(As background, here is a summary of the evidence against Chevron from the Ecuador proceeding.  For specific examples of Kaplan’s inappropriate remarks, see this court filing from 2013.)

The Second Circuit affirmance of Kaplan represents the first time in U.S. history that any federal appellate court has allowed an attack on a foreign judgment by a losing litigant, according to Gupta’s petition for review. 

In strict legal terms, Donziger has asked the Court to overturn the Second Circuit’s affirmance of Kaplan on the theory that a U.S. trial judge has no legal right to let a losing litigant (Chevron) try to collaterally attack a foreign money judgment in U.S. courts – a recipe for international judicial chaos, according to the petition.  And the losing litigant should have even less such right when it does so based on fake evidence, Donziger added.

Allowing Kaplan’s decision to stand “would unnecessarily provoke friction between legal systems, by encouraging pre-emptive challenges to foreign judgments, without actually resolving the dispute between the parties,” the petition asserts.  “For this reason, no U.S. court has ever allowed a pre-emptive collateral on a foreign money judgment. 

“The ruling is as wrong as it is unprecedented,” said the petition.

Kaplan’s ruling also warrants reversal because he allowed Chevron to abuse the RICO statute to allow a private party to seek purely injunctive relief and not money damages when such action is not authorized by the law — all to avoid a jury where the company’s problematic evidence almost certainly would have been rejected.  The U.S. Constitution allows the defendant a jury trial in a civil case only when he or she is sued for money.  By dropping its money damages claim, Chevron virtually guaranteed it would win the case given Kaplan’s obvious proclivities in favor of the company, said Donziger.

Without a jury, Donziger had predicted prior to the RICO trial that he stood no chance of prevailing.  One of his lawyers, the highly respected John Keker of Keker & Van Nest in San Francisco, withdrew prior to trial after accusing Kaplan of letting the case “degenerate into a Dickensian farce” where he let Chevron file hundreds of frivolous motions “to hurt Donziger” and exhaust his resources.  It also turned out that during the RICO trial Kaplan held undisclosed investments in Chevron, prompting further questions about his partiality.

Even though Chevron did not have enough confidence in its evidence to put it before a jury of impartial fact-finders, after the trial it still tried to collect $32 million from Donziger to pay for a small portion of the estimated $2 billion in legal fees it paid to 60 law firms.  Donziger says the fee request is illegal given that he was denied a jury trial and in any event is connected to fraudulent legal work related to the fabrication of false evidence and the preparation of Guerra for 53 consecutive days before he lied on the stand.  That work was done by Gibson Dunn & Crutcher, an American law firm with a history of ethically dubious behavior in a practice group headed by Randy Mastro, a former deputy mayor to Rudy Guliani known for his divisive approach to politics.

Mastro is the same lawyer embroiled in allegations of misconduct over the Ecuador case whose young associate Kristin Hendricks was fined by a federal judge in Oregon for abusing the discovery process to harass an Ecuadorian lawyer for the affected communities. Hendricks later left the firm as its work on the Ecuador matter became embroiled in scandal.  Mastro also headed a supposed investigation that purported to “exonerate” New Jersey Governor Chris Christie in the George Washington bridge scandal; the Gibson Dunn lawyers who worked on the investigation were slammed by a separate judge after claiming to have “lost” their notes after the results of the investigation were called into question.

In terms of Chevron’s attempt to collect legal fees from Donziger, a human rights lawyer of modest means, there is no precedent in U.S. history for such fees to be collected in a RICO case absent a jury trial.  Donziger has called the attempt “another Chevron intimidation tool” used by the company to threaten human rights lawyers worldwide with financial ruin if they dare to sue the company. 

Lauded in the environmental world and with speaking engagements at some of the world’s leading law schools, Donziger works out of an apartment in Manhattan where he lives with his family.  He has been the target of an expensive personal attack strategy involving six public relations firms paid by Chevron, including the one that executed the Swift Boat campaign against John Kerry in the 2004 presidential election.  Chevron also admitted it paid $15 million to the corporate espionage firm Kroll to spy on Donziger and his colleagues. An internal Chevron email from 2009 admitted its long-term strategy was “to demonize Donziger” to distract attention from its own wrongdoing.

Donziger was uncertain about the prospects of the U.S. Supreme Court petition, but he said his primary focus is on helping his clients enforce the judgment against Chevron’s assets in Canada and elsewhere.  Thousand of Ecuadorian villagers are expected to contract cancer in the coming years absent a clean-up, according to independent health evaluations of the local population.

Donziger also issued the following statement:

“It is my view that the U.S. RICO proceedings were initiated by Chevron to create a smokescreen to distract attention from the company’s crimes and fraud in Ecuador, as found by three layers of courts in the venue of its choosing.  Eighteen appellate judges in Ecuador and Canada who have reviewed all or part of the facts have now ruled in favor of the villagers, while only one U.S. trial judge with obvious animus toward the Ecuadorians ruled the other way. Kaplan’s decision is an outlier with little or no credibility in the eyes of two separate Supreme Courts who have actually reviewed the evidence, one in Canada and one in Ecuador.

“So if the U.S. Supreme Court rejects our petition and decides not to review Chevron’s false evidence, it will have no impact on the enforcement of the judgment against Chevron.   But it will have an enormously negative impact on the image of the U.S. judiciary in the eyes of the world.  It will show that our highest court has no interest in properly policing trial judges who accept corrupt evidence and who conduct proceedings that fall below minimum standards of due process as required by international law, while thousands of people suffer and untold numbers die as a result.

“More chillingly, the Second Circuit and Kaplan endorsed a new Chevron playbook that outlines a wholly improper method of corporate counterattack to threaten and silence human rights victims and their lawyers.  Other companies already are copying Chevron’s playbook to try to silence advocates in other human rights cases.  The Supreme Court should not duck its responsibilities in this regard because this approach represents a grave abuse of our civil justice system and a profound threat to our democracy. The legal issues have huge First Amendment implications. If allowed to stand, these unprecedented pro-corporate decisions could undermine American law for decades to come.  Our hope is that the Supreme Court will put an end to Chevron’s charade and reboot the proceeding so the final result in the U.S. is consistent with both domestic and international law.” 

For more information please contact Steven Donziger: sdonziger@donzigerandassociates.com

 

 
 
 

 
 

Parker & Sons Proud to Offer Expert Water Treatment Services

Water Treatment is often regarded as one of the least important aspects of service home maintenance, after plumbing, heating/cool, and electrical. Parker & Sons notes, water treatment, is just as important. The human body is composed of over 60 percent water. Humans require clean water to survive. Individuals require clean water for most essential daily tasks. Often, it is not until water treatment good bad, that most homeowners even begin to think about it. Sometimes, the water that comes out of the tap can be rather unpleasant. In such instances, Parker & Sons unparalleled water treatment services are the best options.

Phoenix is notorious for having extremely hard water. Hard water occurs when mineral deposits gather, and build up in ground water. While hard water does not have any negative health effects, it can wreak havoc on a home. Hard water will cause unsightly calcium buildups, degrade the condition of pipe, ruining energy efficiency, as well as spot and tarnish dishes. Parke & Sons technicians are experienced in dealing with hard water issues. The most eloquent solution for hard water, is the installation of a water softener.

Water softeners are the best way for homeowners to get clean, pure, soft water. Parker & Sons educates that there are several types of water softeners, but regardless of the type, the goal of the unit is to remove mineral deposits from the water. Some units rely on an ionizing process while others actually use other minerals like lime to achieve water softening. A water softener can even have an impact on the monthly utility bill by reducing calcium buildup inside the plumbing system.

Reverse Osmosis systems are an excellent choice for water purification which can immediately improve an individual’s quality of life. No one enjoys drinking hard, strange tasting water directly from the tap. Bottled water is expensive, and has a negative impact on the environment. The best solution is the installation of a reverse osmosis system.

“At Parker & Sons, we offer comprehensive water treatment services. Whatever you need, we can handle it. Say goodbye to gross calcium buildup in your shower and strange, minerally tasting water. Say hello to delicious, soft, clean, purified water,” said Justine Kelly of Parker & Sons.

VÍOS REACHES MILESTONE WITH $1 MILLION IN SALES IN LESS THAN A YEAR

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C.— Víos Nutrition, Inc. announced today that it has reached a major milestone, hitting $1 million in sales in less than 1 year.

 

“This is a major milestone for our company, investors and Brand Partners,” said Co-Founder, Brock Agee. “We actually took pre-orders for our flagship greens product PHYTE on April 16th 2016, which didn’t ship ‘til mid-May, so this is right where we wanted to be in just one year’s time.”

 

“We are setting ourselves up for big things in 2017. We are currently conducting a Title III capital raise on StartEngine.com. This will allow the public to own common shares of stock in our company at the ground level and really help us explode in the market place with new products, increased distribution and a brand recognition ad campaign,” said Agee.

 

Víos develops whole food, plant-based nutrient-dense supplements designed to give customers more of the natural essentials their bodies need, when they need them. All Víos supplements contain certified organic ingredients, are gluten-free, non-GMO, and come in convenient, single-serve packets. Víos is sold in all 50 states and in Canada.

 

Víos currently offers 2 products, PHYTE and Matrix. 

 

PHYTE is a phytonutrition greens supplement that contains a powerful proprietary blend of cereal grasses, spirulina, chlorella, alfalfa leaves, and greens. This unique combination of greens provides essential vitamins, minerals and proteins, and promotes overall good health. PHYTE is rich in chlorophyll, which is vital for the synthesis and function of healthy oxygen-rich blood, boosting stamina and endurance. PHYTE also contains essential enzymes and fiber that aid in digestion and help maintain healthy pH balance. 

 

“We hear from people every day who just love PHYTE and rave about the tremendous health benefits they are experiencing. And not just adults… Kids too. How often can you get 3 servings of greens into your child?” said Lori Patterson, VP of Marketing.

 

The company’s latest product, Matrix shipped on December 28th, just in time for those whose New Year’s Resolution was to lose weight and eat healthier.

 

Matrix is a complete, plant-based meal replacement shake with a balance of protein, complex carbohydrates, omega-3 fatty acids, natural vitamins, minerals, trace minerals, branched chain amino acids pre and probiotics, and high quality fiber. Matrix is whey-free, with no added sugar, salt, synthetic vitamins or minerals, fillers or preservatives. It is also dairy-free, gluten-free, non-GMO and is USDA Certified Organic. 

 

Matrix’s protein blend promotes muscle strengthening and conditioning; it’s fiber and carb blend helps boost stamina, energy and endurance; pre- and probiotics promote digestive health and support the body’s immune system; and its revolutionary adaptogen mix helps the body’s resistance to stress, anxiety and fatigue. Matrix is only 140 calories and contains 21 grams of protein.

 

“Out in the field, this is what our folks have been waiting for,” said Co-Founder Joseph Land. “They want a convenient clean shake that is a full balanced meal without worrying about what is in it. With Víos, they can always be sure we are providing quality ingredients,” said Land.

 

“We are just getting into gyms and yoga studios with our products,” said Land. These are the kind of people who understand plant-based nutrition and its fitness benefits for peak performance and endurance.” said Land.

 

For more information visit: www.vioslife.com.

And for more about the investment Title III Capital Raise visit: www.startengine.com/startup/vovioslife

 

Parker & Sons Offers Incredible Tips for Going Green at Home

Each year, environmental sustainability seems to become an increasingly important topic in the global discourse.  It is an issue that can be addressed on a macro and micro level. While there is little the people of Phoenix can do to improve environmental sustainability on a macro level, there is much that can be done on a micro, personal level. Namely, individuals can make a commitment to living green.

Green living emphasizes maintaining a small environmental footprint through affordable and sustainable living. Parker & Sons believes that green living is a highly commendable ideal. Although there is no universal or national standard for what it means to maintain a “green home,” organizations such as the U.S. Green Building Council do offer green home certifications. Not only does green living come with benefits to the environment, but it also comes with a host of health and economic benefits as well. Parker & Sons offers individuals a few incredible tips for maintaining a green home.  

The bathroom is an excellent place to start going green. High-efficiency showerheads have the potential of saving thousands of gallons of water every year. Studies have shown that a high-efficiency showerhead installed in a shower which is used twice a day will save a household over 3,000 gallons of water per year. Parker & Sons notes that this will also result in significant savings on the monthly utility bill.

Hot water heaters are notorious energy hogs. It takes a very large amount of power to heat water to 140 degrees, which is the standard for a majority of hot water heaters. Homeowners can turn this temperature down to 120 degrees, which will net massive energy savings. Insulation blankets can be purchased at relatively low cost. Parker & Sons advises homeowners to wrap these insulation blankets around the water heater and the first few feet of piping. This will minimize ambient heat loss, and reduce the amount of work the heater has to do to keep water warm.

With just these two simple steps, homeowners can begin going green without impacting their daily lives. Parker & Sons comments that every little bit helps. When everyone kicks in and does their part, amazing things can happen!