Economist Ray Perryman received the 2016 Cesar E. Chavez Conscience Builder Award from the Cesar E. Chavez Legacy and Educational Foundation.

Associated Press— Harry Cabluck, file

Adam Neziri, a native of Macedonia who moved to the United States about 18 years ago, has opened the Greek Grill in Richland Mall.

“We were busy on the day we began serving and have been busier every day since,” Neziri said.

The grill serves gyro wraps, salads and baklava, with meats for the wraps that include chicken, steak and beef with lamb, he said.

Sides include steamed vegetables, potato wedges, stuffed grape leaves and more, all with a Greek twist. A salad bar is also available.

The grill is next to Subway in the mall’s food court, Neziri said.

His hours of business are 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Saturday and noon to 6 p.m. Sundays.

Neziri said he moved to Waco from Harker Heights, where he prepared Greek food in a restaurant called The Acropolis.

Tarpley Music Co.

Tarpley Music Co., which sells a wide range of instruments and offers lessons, is moving into 1300 Lake Air Drive, the former home of Backstage Pass Music Center.

The company has locations in San Angelo, Amarillo, Lubbock, Wichita Falls and Clovis, New Mexico, and reportedly will open in a week or two, said Chuck Lambert, who will manage the establishment and said hiring has begun.

He described Tarpley as a full-line music store, with its website saying its locations offer acoustic and electric guitars, band instruments, drums and percussion instruments, pianos and keyboards, amplifiers and professional audio equipment.

Music Trades Magazine ranks Tarpley Music in the top 200 music stores in the country, out of an estimated 8,000 stores.

Five generations of the Tarpley family have been involved in the operation of the company, which started when Clara Tarpley, a piano teacher in Wellington, Texas, began selling pianos in the 1920s in a hardware store in Shamrock, later moving to Pampa, where she officially launched Tarpley Music Co.

Economist honored

Waco-based economist Ray Perryman, who frequently weighs in on issues affecting the local, state and national economies, has been named as a recipient of the 2016 Cesar E. Chavez Conscience Builder Award by the Cesar E. Chavez Legacy and Educational Foundation.

The award was presented during the foundation’s annual scholarship gala in San Antonio.

The citation called Perryman “a champion and guardian of the conscience and human dignity” and noted that “his life is a testimony centered on these core values.”

Foundation president Jaime Martinez, a friend and contemporary of Chavez, who was a labor and civil rights leader who co-founded the National Farm Workers Association, said Perryman’s life has been defined by “respect for human dignity” and centered on the “unifying principles of God, family and serving others.”

The citation discussed Perryman’s career and impact as an influential economist, with emphasis on work he has provided free of charge related to hunger, child maltreatment, cultural awareness, indigent health care, immigration reform, educational opportunity, drug abuse and homelessness.

More awards for Balcones

Waco’s Balcones Distillery, which has become an award-winning maker of whiskey, has received three more medals to add to its accolades.

Judges at the 2016 San Francisco World Spirits Competition awarded double-gold medals to Balcones “1” Single Malt and Baby Blue, and a bronze medal to Brimstone Corn Whisky.

The competition was held March 17-20 at the Hotel Nikko in downtown San Francisco. The organization was founded in 2000 as a way to determine and award exceptional products in the spirits industry, according to a news release by Balcones.

More than 1,850 spirits were judged this year, representing the largest number of entries in the organization’s 16-year history.

Texas Farm Bureau exec

The Texas Farm Bureau, whose headquarters are located in Waco, has named Si Cook as executive director and chief operations officer, succeeding the retiring Vernie R. Glasson III. He will assume the responsibility of business manager and COO of the state’s largest general farm organization on May 26.

Glasson will serve in the role of adviser until his retirement July 5, the organization announced.

“Our board voted unanimously today to elect Si Cook as executive director of Texas Farm Bureau,” TFB President Russell Boening said. “Si has extensive experience in agriculture and our organization. We are confident in his ability to lead the staff of TFB into the future.”

Cook has served the farm bureau for more than 28 years, most recently as member of the senior management staff under Glasson. He heads the organization division, and in that role he is responsible for member services, education and outreach, youth programs, young farmer and rancher programs, and training.

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