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More than 2,000 people crammed into the MassMutual Center on March 22 for the18th annual Bay Path Women’s Leadership Conference, which promotes skill building and personal growth. The theme for this year’s event was”Be Bold,” a tone reflected by the keynote speakers, including musician, author, actress, and entrepreneur Queen Latifah and those presenting educational breakout sessions. From top: morning keynote speaker Susan Cain, author of Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking. Queen Latifah (fourth from left) with the Bay Path team that produces the event, from left, Stephanie Bradshaw, former assistant to the vice president for Planning & Student Development; Caron Hobin, vice president for Planning and Student Development; Briana Sitler, director of Special Programs; Stacey Perlmutter, assistant to Hobin; and Kendrah Bitgood, class of 2014, conference student assistant. Peggielene Bartels, known as ‘King Peggy’ — who in 2008 inherited the position of King of Otuam, Ghana, Africa, a position that for centuries had always been held by men — speaks to the packed house. Carol Leary, Bay Path College president, presents Queen Latifah with a school sweatshirt.
Table Top Talking
The 19th Annual Table Top Exposition & Business Networking Event took place at the Log Cabin Banquet & Meeting House on March 20, hosted by the chambers of commerce of Greater Holyoke, Greater Chicopee, Greater Easthampton, and Greater Northampton. Almost 200 vendors showcased their products and services to hundreds in attendance. From top: Susan Seaver, assistant vice president at People’s United Bank, left, and Grace Dias, broker/realtor and owner of Grace Group Realty. Patience Waah, right, owner, and Mashaa Westbrook, office support, represent Victory Home Healthcare in Holyoke. Sarah Etelman, left, development coordinator for Girls Inc. of Holyoke, speaks with Patty Delisle, a Bay Path College intern. Joel Morse, associate director of Corporate Support at WGBY, is flanked by Karina Schrengohst, left, and Melanie Skroski, associate attorneys at Royal LLP. Michelle St. Jacques, left, property manger of Open Square in Holyoke, and Peg Boxold, president of Elegant Affairs and the Electric Café at Open Square.
Eric Gouvin, attorney, professor of Law, and the founder of both Western New England University (WNEU) School of Law’s Small Business Clinic and the Center for Innovation & Entrepreneurship, was the March speaker for the Young Professional Society of Greater Springfield’s CEO Luncheon. The luncheon, a perk of YPS membership, allowed an intimate group of YPS members to learn about Gouvin’s experiences with WNEU’s Entrepreneurial Speaker Series, Extreme Business Makeover, and Basic Business Law for Small Businesses information sessions. Speaking with Gouvin after the presentation is Megan Brady, customer advocate at Farm Credit Financial Partners Inc. in Agawam.
Cutting the Ribbon
Accountable Care Associates (ACA) recently relocated its corporate headquarters in Springfield from Birnie Avenue to Monarch Place. Part of a growing trend in accountable-care organizations of doctors, hospitals, and other healthcare providers, the company gives highly coordinated care to patients with the goal of avoiding unnecessary duplication of services and preventing medical errors to improve patient outcomes. ACA brings more than 100 employees to the downtown area and projects 30 more within the next year. Cutting the ribbon in the company’s 10th-floor headquarters are, from left, Paul Picknelly, president of Monarch Enterprises; Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno; and Dr. Philip Gaziano, chairman and CEO of ACA.
Day of Reading
Fourth-grade students at Memorial Elementary School in West Springfield joined Paul DiGrigoli, owner and CEO of DiGrigoli Salon and DiGrigoli School of Cosmetology, on March 1 to celebrate Read Across America Day. The National Education Association’s Read Across America Day is celebrated annually on or around the birthday of Dr. Seuss, the beloved children’s author. In support of the nation’s largest reading celebration, DiGrigoli read Dr. Seuss’s Happy Birthday to You! to the students. At left, left to right, are Russell Johnston, West Springfield school superintendent; Donna Calabrese, Memorial Elementary School principal; Susan Jaye-Kaplan, Link to Libraries co-founder; DiGrigoli; and Susan Landry, Link to Libraries project director.