Aerospace and Aviation, Business, Defense and Military, Free News Articles, Government, Software

1st Edge Wins $9.7M Space and Missile Defense Command SBIR Contract to Research and Develop AI Solutions

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. -- 1st Edge, a leader in designing solutions using Artificial Intelligence and new technologies, was awarded a $9.7M Small Business Innovative Research Phase III contract to Artificial Intelligence solutions for the U.S. Army. This contract, issued by the Space and Missile Defense Command (SMDC), is a continuation of 1st Edge's proprietary Pragmatic Artificial Intelligence and New Technology (PAINT) program, currently impacting multiple army programs.

"Implementing sophisticated, innovative AI solutions for the warfighter and support analysts is a top priority for the Department of Defense and for 1st Edge. We've made excellent advances in phases I and II, but there is lots more to be done," states Nathan Claburn, Vice President of 1st Edge. "This contract will fund improvements in computer vision, defense planning, and target testing."

By using the PAINT approach, users are aided by the science of AI and other new technologies infused into engineering solutions for missile defense. PAINT allows subject matter experts to be more productive, less error prone, and more consistent. In automated software systems, PAINT technology satisfies a broader set of requirements through computer analysis. By processing more data in less time, these automated systems are a vast improvement on current manual approaches.

"PAINT continues to create easier, more consistent defense planning," said Tim McCarter, President of 1st Edge. "This coveted Phase III contract allows us to continue the work of advancing AI for multiple missile defense programs and increasing the success of the modern warfighter."

About 1st Edge LLC

Located in Huntsville, Alabama, 1st Edge is a Small Business Provider to the Department of Defense and works closely with Space and Missile Defense Command (SMDC), Missile Defense Agency (MDA), and Combat Capabilities Development Command (CCDC). Founded in 2011, the company uses agile methodology to craft advanced technologies into software solutions. Core competencies include artificial intelligence, data solutions, software engineering, air and missile defense systems, data visualization and software analysis.

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Aerospace and Aviation, Business, Defense and Military, Free News Articles, Government, Software

1st Edge Wins Advanced Technology International (ATI) OTA Contract to Develop Artificial Intelligence (AI) Solutions for US Army

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. -- 1st Edge, a leader in designing pragmatic solutions using Artificial Intelligence and new technologies, announced the win of a $46M Other Transaction Authority (OTA) contract to develop Artificial Intelligence solutions for the US Army. The contract continues an effort named Pragmatic Artificial Intelligence and New Technology (PAINT).

The Pragmatic AI and New Technology (PAINT) approach applies the science of AI and other new technologies to near-term, engineering solutions for missile defense. By using the PAINT approach, users are able to capture subject matter expertise in automated software systems, allowing a broader set of requirements to be satisfied through computer analysis. These automated systems can process tremendous amounts of data in a fraction of the time compared to current manual approaches.

"Advancements of AI in the laboratory are not translating to operational solutions fast enough to meet evolving threats.," states Tim McCarter, President of 1st Edge. "Integrating AI into current and future DoD programs is a major initiative for 1st Edge. Our mission is to close the gap and get sophisticated, innovative technology in the fight to augment the warfighter and support analysts."

Through this contract, 1st Edge will develop prototype software to streamline missile defense programs using Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) techniques. The three-year contract will be managed through the Combat Capabilities Development Command (DEVCOM) Aviation and Missile Center (AvMC).

"1st Edge has demonstrated the success of the PAINT concept which began as a Phase I SBIR, gained traction through a Phase II effort and resonated with a breadth of customers," said Nathan Claburn, Vice President of 1st Edge. "Now with additional funding 1st Edge will advance pragmatic solutions for multiple missile defense programs."

About 1st Edge LLC

Located in Huntsville, Alabama, 1st Edge is a Small Business Provider to the Department of Defense and works closely with Space and Missile Defense Command (SMDC), Missile Defense Agency (MDA), and Combat Capabilities Development Command (CCDC). Founded in 2011, the company uses agile methodology to craft advanced technologies into software solutions. Core competencies include artificial intelligence, data solutions, software engineering, air and missile defense systems, data visualization and software analysis.

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Jana Conover


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Business, Free News Articles

Downtown Florence’s Cottonwood to offer same products as Whole Foods

FLORENCE, Ala. -- The Shoals' favorite farm-to-table grocery store, Cottonwood Farm & Grocery, now partners with United Natural Foods (UNFI) to offer all of your niche organic and natural favorites - right around the corner.

UNFI, the same distributor who stocks Whole Foods, has already delivered their first truck to the Shoals, allowing Cottonwood customers to enjoy their big-name favorites without driving more than an hour to purchase them.

"We're always thinking about what our community wants and needs," said co-owner Brian Williamson Jr. "We don't want people having to drive to Huntsville, Nashville, or Birmingham to get their groceries when we can easily provide those goods for them."

Cottonwood Farm & Grocery is the first and only business in the Shoals to offer wholesale UNFI products - such as Annie's Homegrown, Justin's Peanut Butter, Chobani and LaCroix, among others - as well as 100 percent organic fruits and vegetables of better quality than Publix or Amish produce.

"If there's something you don't see in the store but you usually pick up on your Whole Foods run, I guarantee we can get it," Williamson said. "Why would you need to go to Trader Joe's when you've got us right around the corner?"

Since their grand opening in April, Cottonwood Farm & Grocery has offered downtown Florence fresh flowers and produce as well as humanely raised meats and dairy products. Their focus on providing farm fresh goods has bolstered community education of local versus wholesale farming, and the organic, natural offerings provided by UNFI complement that goal.

Current UNFI-provided products include:

* LaCroix Sparkling Water
* Topo Chico Sparkling Water
* Annie's Homegrown Mac and Cheese, Snack Mix, and Cereal
* Justin's Peanut Butter Cups
* Kettle Brand Potato Chips
* Bragg Liquid Aminos and Apple Cider Vinegar
* Near East Pilaf and Couscous
* Kind Granola Bars
* Angie's Popcorn
* Chobani Greek Yogurt
* Tubs of trail mix
* Dozens and dozens more!

Current organic fruits and vegetable selection includes:

* Broccoli slaw
* Carrots (Regular and Baby)
* Cucumbers
* Herbs (including basil, rosemary, and thyme)
* Lettuce and salad mixes
* Mushrooms
* Onions
* Mini sweet peppers
* Baby potato mix
* Tomatoes (heirloom and cherry)
* Pink Lady apples
* Bananas
* Red seedless grapes
* Peaches (white and yellow)
* Hummus (Black Bean, Roasted Red Pepper, and Regular)

For questions regarding Cottonwood Farm & Grocery, contact Brian Williamson Jr. at or visit

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Advertising and Marketing, Business, Free News Articles

Lime Group, LLC to offer customized digital marketing services

FLORENCE, Ala. -- As a result of continued growth and client success, Lime Group, LLC, will begin offering marketing services tailored to specific business' needs and goals. In the past, Lime Group has offered a flat rate for access to all of their resources from website development and maintenance to social media management and print advertising. Thanks to feedback from clients and the expansion of services, the company will now be offering customized services so that everyone pays for what they need and no more.

"A lot of people were paying one price a month for us to do everything for them, but not every business needs everything we offer," said owner, Brian Williamson. "Now, we can get them exactly what they need so they're not paying for what they don't. We also have moved to quarterly agreements instead of yearly so that services can be turned on or off according to a clients' needs during slow months of the year."

Customers will be able to choose from numerous services, including:

* Website Design & Maintenance

* Search Engine Optimization

* App Development & Maintenance

* Social Media Marketing

* Graphic Design and Branding

* Press Releases & Content Creation

* Email & SMS Marketing

* Pay Per Click & Social Media Advertising & Management

* Consultations for small Businesses just getting started

* and other services as needed!

"The continued support of our customers has enormously helped us in two different ways," Williamson said. "They've supported us in a way that has allowed us to grow and expand in a way that will ultimately benefit them and get them exactly what they need. And the clients we have had, both recently and for a long time, have given incredible feedback that lets us know that we're doing things awesome, we just need to offer some less than others."

With this increase in specialized services, prices overall will see an increase; however, the cost differential will be small since the packages are customizable instead of all-inclusive.

"If we're going to offer specific services, we want to give our clients the best of the best, and that means we have to employ more people," Williamson said. "That said, clients are going to see the results they want to see in a much more sustainable way that's worth it."

Learn more at:


Offering marketing and technology solutions Since 2010, our team helps businesses get ahead of the competition by utilizing our knowledge and skills. Our willingness to explore new concepts, trends, programs and platforms defines our approach to marketing and exemplifies our appreciation for challenging, unique projects.

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For questions about Lime Group, LLC, services offered, or pricing, please contact Brian Williamson at

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Alliances and Partnerships, Business, Education and Schools, Free News Articles

Final TeethXpress guided full-arch, immediate-load dental implant course of 2021 to be held in Las Vegas

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. -- TeethXpress will hold its final full-arch, immediate-load course taught from a guided treatment perspective Sept. 25-26, 2021, in Las Vegas, Nevada. Led by noted periodontist Curry H. Leavitt, DMD, MS, of Red Rock Periodontics & Implantology, the course will take place over two days at the Red Rock Institute implant training center in Las Vegas. Attendees will participate in hands-on training and view a live surgery, all while earning 16 CE credits.

Dr. Leavitt will present new materials and cover the new nSequence guide design.

"It's been such a touch-and-go year with COVID-19, but the feedback from doctors who attended our hands-on guided course in January was so positive, we had to make room for another date this year," said Dr. Leavitt. "Since then, I've added new material that covers several immediate, fixed-hybrid implant cases, including the new nSequence guide design. I can hardly wait to share these experiences with colleagues."

Remaining space is limited. Register today to reserve your seat.

Not only will doctors receive an opportunity to participate in a comprehensive hands-on, didactic guided surgery training session, they'll also have an opportunity to watch Dr. Leavitt perform a live surgery and immediate, fixed-hybrid prosthetic conversion using a CT-based, stackable guide. The live surgery will involve a partially edentulous maxillary arch. Four to six dental implants and multi-unit abutments will be placed using the BioHorizons Tapered Pro system.

January 2021 course attendees were outwardly complementary of pearls they picked up on the proper digital treatment planning.

"Dr. Leavitt's lecture and presentation were truly phenomenal," said Dr. Wladimir Gedeon, OMS. "The way he masters digital workflow is brilliant."

As one of the nation's most experienced implant laboratory technicians, Jeff Carlson, CDT, Senior nSequence Implant Specialist, will be present to support this digital learning experience.

"Supporting Dr. Leavitt and the TeethXpress team in training doctors on this advanced, guided, implant protocol is quite humbling," said Carlson. "Dr. Leavitt is so down to earth and has a way of engaging doctors that makes this course an exceptional learning experience. Before you know it, doctors are not only learning from his lectures, but they're picking up invaluable insights from each other."

Proceed(r) Finance will present their treatment financing resources patients can use to make dental implants more affordable. There aren't many financial institutions in this space who can offer up to $70,000 in unsecured treatment financing to patients in need of large dollar dental procedures, such as "all-on-4" dental implant therapy.

"Anyone attending this September TeethXpress course should expect to be in for a great learning experience," said Dr. Leavitt. "I'm excited just thinking about it!"

There may be no better time to visit Las Vegas than in the fall, according to U.S. News & World Report. Travel expenses are lower than the summer and winter months and high temperatures begin to drop into the low 70s.

Register today at:

About TeethXpress Courses

TeethXpress(r) is a registered trademark of BioHorizons. TeethXpress dental implant courses are focused on training dentists on full-arch, immediate, fixed-hybrid implant procedures, or All-on-X. Implant surgeons and restorative dentists can train to perform All-on-X procedures using either a conventional or fully guided digital approach through these two-day CE courses. TeethXpress courses are currently held in major U.S. cities, including San Diego, California; Providence, Rhode Island; Cleveland, Ohio; Las Vegas, Nevada; and New City, New York. More than 1,400 dentists have been trained at a TeethXpress course.

Headquartered in Birmingham, Alabama, BioHorizons is the third-largest dental implant company in the world. BioHorizons helps customers restore smiles in more than 90 countries throughout North America, Europe, South America, Asia, Africa and Australia.

Learn more at:

Twitter: @biohorizons

Jaclyn Walz
Senior Practice Development Associate


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*Caption: Dr. Curry Leavitt, periodontist, TeethXpress guided implant course instructor.

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Business, Free News Articles, Taxes and Accounting

ICS Welcomes Adam Finesilver CPA to the New Alabama Office

MONTGOMERY, Ala. -- ICS Tax, LLC is excited to announce its Southeast regional expansion with a new office in Montgomery, Alabama. ICS welcomes Adam Finesilver, CPA as its Regional Director. Adam brings over 13 years of experience providing tax advisory services to clients in real estate, financial and professional services industries. He graduated Summa Cum Laude, earned a Master of Accountancy, and has devoted his time to public accounting since 2007.

Adam said he "is thrilled to join ICS Tax to better serve his clients with tax saving opportunities such as cost segregation, 45L credits and R&D tax credits." In his role, he will be collaborating with taxpayers and tax professionals to identify credits, deductions, and incentives that can significantly reduce tax liabilities and increase profitability.

Montgomery, Alabama has been home to Adam for the past twenty years, where he resides with his wife and three young children. He has given back to his community by serving on the Montgomery Chamber of Commerce and as ambassador for the Alabama Society of Certified Public Accountants (ASCPA).

The new ICS Tax, Montgomery Alabama office is fully supported by a team of nationwide engineers and tax consultants. Adam is poised and ready to lower your tax liabilities!


ICS Tax, LLC (ICS) is a consulting firm providing innovative tax planning strategies and specializes in both the 45L and 179D tax incentives. ICS collaborates with taxpayers and their tax professionals to identify credits and incentives that reduce tax liabilities and increase profitability. ICS provides nationwide service through its offices located throughout the country.

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Business, Free News Articles, Manufacturing

Dapa Products Share Tips on how to Select the Right Welt Cord for Outdoor and Indoor Use

JASPER, Ala. -- Welt cord is remarkably versatile and used in a highly diverse range of products. For businesses who plan to use welt cord as part of a product, they choose the right kind. The experts at Dapa Products are happy to help.

Welt cord is quite popular for many indoor as well as outdoor products. The key to getting the most out of the welt cord is to use the appropriate grade. Leading manufacturer Dapa Products is doing its best to educate on the subject. Recently, the team shared its thoughts on what welt cord works best indoors and what holds up best outdoors to help customers make better-informed decisions that meet or exceed their business's needs.

"We are always happy to discuss our products," commented a spokesperson from the company. "If there's ever a question, don't hesitate to give us a call."

For outdoor use, Dapa Products point towards three smart options: foam welt cord, a great choice for pillows and cushions that are left outside; vinyl welt cord, which is recommended for outdoor furniture that will be exposed to cold weather; and cotton welt cord, which is also a good choice for outdoor furniture, but this time with more diverse weather exposure, especially when the cotton has a covering.

For indoor use of welt cord, Dapa Products recommends cotton welt cord or braided welt cord most often. Vinyl is also an option as long as temperatures aren't expected to be high, damaging the cord or making it uncomfortable. And cotton is, of course, softer and more comfortable than vinyl.

Feedback for Dapa Products' Welt Cord continues to be completely positive across the board.

Chris S., from Ohio, recently said in a five-star review, "We had some bad experiences trying to find the correct materials to use for our company's outdoor chairs. Eventually, we came across Dapa Products, and their foam welt cord was perfect. There's no doubt about future products, and this is where we will return. The whole experience was perfect. Fully recommended!"

Dapa Products is a leading source for all kinds of welt cord made to the highest quality, offered at attractive prices, and backed up by first-class customer support. For more information or to place an order, be sure to visit

About DAPA Products:

DAPA Products is known, not just for the Foam Welt Cord, but the highly demanded Foam Screen Spline, along with many more goods in the window, door, and upholstered furniture industries and braided products for the upholstery furniture industry. DAPA runs several extrusion lines 24 hours a day, 5 days per week. Foam Screen Spline has helped to reduce the stress of screening and now is the favored choice for many major manufacturers. Thanks to the support of our many friends and customers, a small beginning has proved to be highly successful. Foam Welt Cord and Foam Screen Spline are still our main products but we now provide many other products for these markets and several other industries.

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Business, Free News Articles, Real Estate

McWhirter Promotes Tanya Shubert to Vice President of Management and Operations, Mid-South

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. -- Today, McWhirter (, a leading commercial services firm in the southeast, announced the promotion of Tanya Shubert to Vice President of Management and Operations, Mid-South. Shubert joined McWhirter in 2018 and has been instrumental in growing the medical office property management portfolio to 11 buildings across Alabama and Mississippi.

"Tanya's 25 years of experience in healthcare facility management and maintenance ensures our clients receive the highest level of advice and service while she oversees the management of their investments," said Barry McWhirter, President and CEO of McWhirter. "We look forward to her continued commitment to make McWhirter the leading healthcare management service provider in the southeast."

In addition to Ms. Shubert's healthcare management experience, she has specialized expertise in life safety, emergency management, environment of care and regulation and standards for healthcare facilities and hospitals.

Tanya has served in leadership roles for healthcare systems and served on various committees including Safety, Environment of Care, Infection Control and Quality Control. She holds certifications for FEMA National Incident Management, OSHA and HeartSaver(r) CPR, along with specialized training in electrical safety, defensive driving and advanced regional response training.

About McWhirter

McWhirter's Property Management team has more than 100 years of experience and manages more than 7 million square feet of healthcare, industrial, office and retail space in eight states. Through long-term client and vendor relationships, current technology systems and leading industry software solutions, we proactively identify challenges to reduce costs and increase efficiencies for our clients. We employ building engineers skilled in the design, installation and maintenance of major service areas including heating, electrical, mechanical, landscape, health safety and security.

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Alliances and Partnerships, Business, Drugs and Pharmaceuticals, Free News Articles, Surgery and Neurotechnology

Pure Transplant Solutions Announces Collaboration with the University of Alabama at Birmingham to Develop Memory B Cell-Directed Diagnostics for HLA-Sensitized Patients

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. -- Pure Transplant Solutions, LLC (PTS), a collaboration driven biotechnology company focused on the development of human leukocyte antigen (HLA)-based diagnostics and therapeutics within the field of transplantation, is proud to announce that it has entered into a collaboration agreement with The University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB), a leading institution in transplant research, to develop a new class of transplant diagnostics aimed at the detection and identification of HLA-specific memory B cells which are poised to produce HLA-specific immunoglobulin injurious to transplanted grafts.

The research is being led by Dr. Frances Lund, Charles H. McCauley Professor and Chair Department of Microbiology, Dr. John Killian, resident in the Department of Surgery, and Dr. Rico Buchli, VP of Products and Services at PTS, and focuses on using PTS's newly created Class I and Class II biotinylated soluble HLA (sHLA) proteins to understand the breadth and specificity of HLA-reactive B cells in sensitized individuals. These proprietary HLA molecules can be utilized in standard flow cytometry workflows for easy processing and analysis that the parties hope will provide a new tool for clinicians and researchers to use when caring for transplant patients.

Almost all previous work on HLA sensitized individuals has relied upon assays that detect circulating anti-HLA antibodies. The goal is to determine the reactivities of HLA-reactive B cells in these sensitized patients and compare these reactivities to those that are present among circulating anti-HLA antibodies. Using panels of biotinylated HLA molecules in combination with various tetramerized fluorescent reagents allows the interrogation of the specific B cell receptors expressed by HLA-reactive B cells.

"Prevention of B cell activation and proliferation is crucial for the survival of a transplant patient. For patient monitoring, identifying the right approach to immune profiling at each stage of clinical development-including the later stages, when it is often considered impractical to include these approaches-may be critical for identifying predictors of rejection responses, or monitoring immunosuppression efficacy", said Dr. Buchli. "Flow cytometric analysis using our fluorescent tagged HLA products have the capabilities needed to meet the increased demands to detect, identify, and monitor HLA-specific memory B cells."

"Our research at the University of Alabama at Birmingham seeks to improve the success of organ transplants," said John Killian, Jr., M.D., a research resident in the UAB Department of Surgery. "One problem is that following pregnancy or transplant, patients form antibodies against non-self HLA molecules. These antibodies comprise a major barrier to transplantation, and they exacerbate gender and racial disparities for thousands of people who await a life-saving transplant. Thus, we want to understand the breadth and specificity of HLA-reactive memory B cells in sensitized women. Pure Protein's extensive selection of recombinant HLA molecules will be integral to our projects, allowing us to pair fluorescence-activated cell sorting of HLA-reactive B cells with subsequent analysis of recombinant-antibody specificities. An improved understanding of the phenotype and specificity of HLA-reactive B cells will offer new opportunities to diagnose and treat HLA sensitization."

About Pure Transplant Solutions, LLC

Pure Transplant Solutions, LLC was founded in 1999 in order to leverage the leading research in HLA protein of parent company, Pure Protein, LLC, into solutions to address a growing list of needs in organ transplantation. Visit:

About Pure Protein, LLC

Pure Protein, LLC is a biotechnology company funded and managed by Emergent Technologies, Inc. that is focused on the development and commercialization of proprietary technologies related to the human leukocyte antigen (HLA) system, formed and exclusively licensed from the University of Oklahoma. Pure Protein, in conjunction with its affiliates and subsidiaries, aims to bring novel therapies and diagnostic tools to patients across a wide range of application areas spanning from therapeutic development in the fields of oncology, autoimmunity, and infectious disease, to antibody mediated rejection in transplantation.

Through its new ecommerce website,, Pure Protein now offers academic and commercial researchers the ability to purchase individual HLA reagents to detect, profile, and monitor allele-specific immune responses, as well as HLA peptide epitope binding services to aide in improving the design of vaccination and therapeutic targeting strategies.

About the University of Alabama Birmingham

Known for its innovative and interdisciplinary approach to education at both the graduate and undergraduate levels, the University of Alabama at Birmingham, a part of the University of Alabama System, is an internationally renowned research university and academic medical center with over $600 million in research awards annually, as well as Alabama's largest employer, with some 23,000 employees, and has an annual economic impact exceeding $7 billion on the state. The pillars of UAB's mission include education, research, innovation and economic development, community engagement, and patient care. Learn more at

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Business, Construction and Building, Free News Articles, Insurance

EPIC Adds Allen Baker as Senior Risk Consultant

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. -- EPIC Insurance Brokers and Consultants announced today that Allen Baker has joined its National Energy Construction Team as a Senior Risk Consultant. Baker will be based in Birmingham, Alabama. The addition of Baker positions the Energy Construction team to continue to strategically focus on growing market share in key verticals.

Baker brings 15 years of experience advising clients with complex risk on insurance and risk management concerns. Prior to joining EPIC, Baker was a senior vice president with Valent Group. Focus and dedication to clients has propelled Baker's substantial growth, and established him as a foundational player in the insurance brokerage market.

"We are fortunate to welcome Allen to our growing team. His deep knowledge and expertise will be of immediate benefit to our clients and our organization," said Brian Tanner, Managing Principal, EPIC Birmingham office.

Adam Meyerowitz, President, Midwest & Southeast Regions, commented, "We are pleased to welcome Allen to our Birmingham office. His addition furthers our strategy to accelerate our growth in the Southeast Region by partnering with stellar professionals."

Baker earned a Bachelor of Arts from Valdosta State University. He also holds a Construction Risk Insurance Specialist (CRIS) designation. Baker is actively involved with Ronald McDonald House Charities and is on the Mountain Brook Athletics' Board of Directors.

Allen Baker

About EPIC Insurance Brokers & Consultants

EPIC Insurance Brokers & Consultants has more than 2,600 team members operating from more than 80 offices across the U.S., providing Property and Casualty, Employee Benefits, Specialty Programs, and Private Client solutions to EPIC clients.

For more information on EPIC, visit:

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