Business Briefs

Former Fairmont resident honored

MINNEAPOLIS — Architect and former Fairmont resident Alissa D. Luepke Pier recently was honored by the University of Minnesota as one of its “Alumni of Notable Achievement” in 2017. Fewer than 1 percent of all graduates have received this recognition.

Pier lives in Minneapolis. She attended St. Paul’s Lutheran School in Fairmont for many years prior to her family’s move to Iowa in 1988. She received her bachelor’s degree in architecture in 1999, and her Master of Architecture degree in 2002. She is currently the principal architect at A.D.L.Pier Design, Inc., a firm founded in 2004.

Nelson receives safe-driving honor

ST. JAMES — UPS has announced that 28 elite drivers from Minnesota are among 1,582 newly inducted worldwide into the Circle of Honor, an honorary organization for UPS drivers who have achieved 25 or more years of accident-free driving.

Trent Nelson, who works out of the St. James UPS Center, is one of the 28 drivers from Minnesota honored by UPS.

‘Pharma Bro’ sentenced to prison

NEW YORK (AP) — Martin Shrkeli, the smirking “Pharma Bro” vilified for jacking up the price of a lifesaving drug, was sentenced Friday to seven years in prison for defrauding investors in two failed hedge funds.

The self-promoting pharmaceutical executive notorious for trolling critics online was convicted in a securities fraud case last year unconnected to the price increase dispute.

Shrkeli, his cocky persona nowhere to be found, cried as he told U.S. District Judge Kiyo Matsumoto he made many mistakes and apologized to investors.

“I want the people who came here today to support me to understand one thing, the only person to blame for me being here today is me,” he said. “I took down Martin Shrkeli.”

He said that he hopes to make amends and learn from his mistakes and apologized to his investors.

Prosecutors argued that the 34-year-old was a master manipulator who conned wealthy investors and deserved 15 years in prison. His lawyers said he was a misunderstood eccentric who used unconventional means to make those same investors even wealthier, and deserved 18 months or less in prison.