Guatemala the Republic of Guatemala, is a country in Central America bordered by Mexico to the north and west and the Caribbean to the northeast, Honduras to the east, El Salvador to the southeast and the Pacific Ocean to the south. With an estimated population of around 17.2 million, it is the most populous country in Central America. Guatemala is a representative democracy; the territory of modern Guatemala once formed the core of the Maya civilization, which extended across Mesoamerica. Most of the country was conquered by the Spanish in the 16th century, becoming part of the viceroyalty of New Spain. Guatemala attained independence in 1821 as part of the Federal Republic of Central America, which dissolved by 1841. From the mid - to late-19th century, Guatemala experienced civil strife. Beginning in the early 20th century, it was ruled by a series of dictators backed by the United Fruit Company and the United States government. In 1944, the authoritarian leader Jorge Ubico was overthrown by a pro-democratic military coup, initiating a decade-long revolution that led to sweeping social and economic reforms.
A U. S.-backed military coup in 1954 installed a dictatorship. From 1960 to 1996, Guatemala endured a bloody civil war fought between the US-backed government and leftist rebels, including genocidal massacres of the Maya population perpetrated by the military. Since a United Nations-negotiated peace accord, Guatemala has witnessed both economic growth and successful democratic elections, though it continues to struggle with high rates of poverty, drug trade, instability; as of 2014, Guatemala ranks 31st of 33 Latin American and Caribbean countries in terms of the Human Development Index. Guatemala's abundance of biologically significant and unique ecosystems includes many endemic species and contributes to Mesoamerica's designation as a biodiversity hotspot; the name "Guatemala" comes from the Nahuatl word Cuauhtēmallān, or "place of many trees", a derivative of the K'iche' Mayan word for "many trees" or more for the Cuate/Cuatli tree Eysenhardtia. This was the name the Tlaxcaltecan soldiers who accompanied Pedro de Alvarado during the Spanish Conquest gave to this territory.
The first evidence of human habitation in Guatemala dates back to 12,000 BC. Evidence, such as obsidian arrowheads found in various parts of the country, suggests a human presence as early as 18,000 BC. There is archaeological proof. Pollen samples from Petén and the Pacific coast indicate that maize cultivation had developed by 3500 BC. Sites dating back to 6500 BC have been found in the Quiché region in the Highlands, Sipacate and Escuintla on the central Pacific coast. Archaeologists divide the pre-Columbian history of Mesoamerica into the Preclassic period, the Classic period, the Postclassic period; until the Preclassic was regarded as a formative period, with small villages of farmers who lived in huts, few permanent buildings. However, this notion has been challenged by recent discoveries of monumental architecture from that period, such as an altar in La Blanca, San Marcos, from 1000 BC; the Classic period of Mesoamerican civilization corresponds to the height of the Maya civilization, is represented by countless sites throughout Guatemala, although the largest concentration is in Petén.
This period is characterized by urbanisation, the emergence of independent city-states, contact with other Mesoamerican cultures. This lasted until 900 AD, when the Classic Maya civilization collapsed; the Maya abandoned many of the cities of the central lowlands or were killed off by a drought-induced famine. The cause of the collapse is debated, but the drought theory is gaining currency, supported by evidence such as lakebeds, ancient pollen, others. A series of prolonged droughts, among other reasons such as overpopulation, in what is otherwise a seasonal desert is thought to have decimated the Maya, who relied on regular rainfall; the Post-Classic period is represented by regional kingdoms, such as the Itza, Kowoj and Kejache in Petén, the Mam, Ki'che', Chajoma, Tz'utujil, Poqomchi', Q'eqchi' and Ch'orti' in the highlands. Their cities preserved many aspects of Maya culture; the Maya civilization shares many features with other Mesoamerican civilizations due to the high degree of interaction and cultural diffusion that characterized the region.
Advances such as writing and the calendar did not originate with the Maya. Maya influence can be detected from Honduras, Northern El Salvador to as far north as central Mexico, more than 1,000 km from the Maya area. Many outside influences are found in Maya art and architecture, which are thought to be the result of trade and cultural exchange rather than direct external conquest. In 2018, 60,000 uncharted structures were revealed by archaeologists with the help of Lidar technology lasers in northern Guatemala; the project applied Lidar technology on an area of 2,100 square kilometers in the Maya Biosphere Reserve in the Petén region of Guatemala. Unlike previous assumptions, thanks to the new findings, archaeologists believe that 7-11 million Maya people inhabited in northern Guatemala during the late classical period from 650 to 800 A. D. Lidar technology digitally
Ceres Fruit Juices Pty Ltd, trading as The Ceres Beverage Company, is a beverage company based in Paarl, South Africa. It is a subsidiary of Pioneer Foods. Ceres advertises their products being made from 100% fruit juice without preservatives, they are manufactured using aseptic processing. The products are sold in Africa and imported to over 80 countries in areas including North America and Asia; the United States is one of their largest markets where it is a recognised brand of fruit juice. The company is named after the town of Ceres in the Western Cape, South Africa where it was founded in 1986 by local fruit farmers as a way to add value and expand the market for their produce; the Ceres valley is an important fruit growing region in southern Africa for apples and stone fruits. Ceres became a wholly owned subsidiary of the Cape Town based Pioneer Foods in 2004. Ceres products sold under the Ceres brand name include: Ceres 100% Juice Ceres Junior Juice Ceres Sparkling Ceres Delight Ceres Fruit Tea Ceres Spring Water Ceres Squash Concentrate Ceres Nectar Concentrate Company Website CANSA endorses Ceres Plus Ceres juice products cited for misleading labeling Fruit juice distributor corrects misleading labeling
Paducah Bank is the only locally owned bank in Paducah, Kentucky. The bank has current assets of $588 million and offers full service commercial and retail banking products and services; the bank's main office is located at 555 Jefferson Street. The bank employs more than 130 people; the bank's Private Banking Division services include: Checking accounts Money market accounts Savings accounts Certificates of deposit Private cash management accounts Customized mortgages Home equity credit Residential construction lending Investment loans Credit cards Overdraft protection Online banking Online bill pay Notary services Visa travel/money cards and cashier's checks Currency exchange Paducah Bank's Trust Division provides investment management and financial assistance in estate planning to aid in reducing estate taxes, financing educations, charitable bequests, distribution of income to beneficiaries, many other trust-related products and services. Trust services include: Estate planning/charitable giving Asset management Asset custody Trust administration Family foundation management Personal services consulting Retirement planning Escrow agent Personal bill paying Paducah Financial Consultants is the bank's investment division.
Licensed brokers work through LPL Financial to provide customized solutions to help customers build and transfer wealth. Paducah Financial Consultants services include: Professional investment management Brokerage services Long-term financial planning Retirement planning Paducah Bank was named one of the Top 15 Small Workplaces in North America by The Wall Street Journal and Winning Workplaces in 2008; the Wall Street Journal partnered with Winning Workplaces, a nonprofit company whose mission is to help the leaders of small and mid-size organizations create better workplaces. Over 800 companies were selected to submit an application. A team of judges reviewed all the material and named 15 winners who were featured in the October 13 issue of The Wall Street Journal's Report on Small Businesses and honored at a Top Small Workplaces Conference and Celebration sponsored by Winning Workplaces in Chicago, IL. Paducah Bank was the only business in Kentucky and the only bank in the United States to win this honor in 2008.
In 2002, the bank's directors and management had the foresight to purchase 3 acres of land with the plan of building a three-story, 15,000-square-foot building to replace the West Park Banking Center. On June 16, 2008, the West Park Banking Center was relocated into the new facility in Strawberry Hill. In 2002, the bank developed an Owners' Commitment. Employees participated in the creation of 15 basics designed to put Service, Credo and Vision in place. In order to permanently cement this new culture into the organization, "Owners' Meetings" were created; every day at 8:30 a.m. every employee at every location attends a five-minute stand-up meeting. During 2002, the management team began an initiative to take the bank from "good to great." This concept, as outlined in the book "Good to Great" by Jim Collins, is consistent with the bank's Owners' Commitment. All employees received a copy of the book, discussion groups determined how to apply the book's recommendations to the bank's culture. Few projects have had both the local and national impact as the bank's involvement with the revitalization of Paducah's historic Lower Town neighborhood.
A feature on the bank and the revitalization program in The American Banker told the story like this: In the 1940s and 1950s, Kentucky, was a destination for jazz musicians such as Louis Armstrong and Duke Ellington. However, like many other small Midwestern cities, Paducah fell on hard times in recent decades. Lower Town, one of the first neighborhoods settled, became a center for local drug trade and historic Victorian houses there were cut haphazardly into low-rent apartments, accelerating the neighborhoods decline, but Paducah Lower Town, has been enjoying a rebirth. Lower Town has emerged as a thriving artists' neighborhood because of Paducah Bank, tourism is on the rise in Paducah as art lovers flock to the city to view their work; the bank partnered with the city to bring artists from all over the country to Paducah's Lower Town neighborhood to revitalize and restore early Victorian homes. The idea was that artists would purchase homes at discounted prices and, with low-interest Paducah Bank loans, would renovate them—typically by creating a gallery on the street level and living quarters above.
The concept caught on so much that the Artist Relocation Program has won numerous state and national awards and has been featured in national news broadcasts and in national newspapers around the country. In 2010, Paducah Bank partnered with the Paducah Rotary Club to commit funds toward the organization's Community Scholarship Program. A scholarship to West Kentucky Community and Technical College will be funded for all students of Paducah/McCracken County schools who meet the criteria. Students must maintain a 2.5 GPA throughout high school along with a 95 percent cumulative attendance record. Designed to provide "gap funding," the scholarship will make up the difference between the amount a student receives in other scholarships and grants and the remaining tuition costs at WKCTC. Paducah Bank partnered with Paducah Head Start/Preschool in the funding for the purchase of 100 picture books for preschool students in June 2010. Paducah Head Start/Preschool serves their families; the b