* Robert J. Smith of Westerville is a winner of The Wattys, an online writing competition hosted by Wattpad.

* Robert J. Smith of Westerville is a winner of The Wattys, an online writing competition hosted by Wattpad.

Smith's story, "Petectives: The Webcomic," was selected from among almost 140,000 entries to win the 2016 Visual Storytelling Award.

Smith's work will receive exposure to Wattpad's community of 45 million readers and will be featured alongside other award winners through a promoted Wattpad reading list and Wattys story cover badge.

For more information on Smith's Petectives series, visit petectives.net.

* Lisa Balek, of Somerset Travels in Westerville, recently earned the distinguished certified travel associate designation from the Travel Institute, the travel industry's oldest education organization.

The designation is awarded to travel professionals who complete a comprehensive exam-based training program, demonstrate extensive industry knowledge and experience and continue to fulfill stringent education credit requirements each year.