Picture This

Email ‘Picture This’ photos with a caption and contact information to [email protected]


Great Outdoors


Florence Bank recently pledged $100,000 to Hampshire Regional YMCA to support its $1.5 million mission-expansion campaign to expand available program space by developing an outdoor exercise ‘airnaseum,’ or open-air gymnasium. The YMCA hopes to break ground on the project in the spring and evolve it over several years, as funds are gathered. The airnaseum and other improvements will benefit both children and adults.

Great Outdoors

Pictured, from left: Florence Bank President and CEO Matt Garrity awards the ceremonial check to YMCA staff members Mark Cabral, Basil Bartlett, Diana Carcamo, Genevieve Ledbetter, Jennifer Allen, Stephanie Kirkendall, and CEO Julie Bianco.




Art of the Matter

Amy Johnquest

Amy Johnquest

Amy Johnquest established the Taber Art Gallery at Holyoke Community College 24 years ago and since then has been its only director. Planning to retire at the end of the spring semester, she recently curated her final exhibition, “Upward and Onward,” an homage to her quarter-century at the gallery. Johnquest invited friends, family members, and colleagues to contribute their art to “Upward and Onward,” which also includes photos and paintings of herself as a child growing up in Ohio. The result is an exhibition of some 150 pieces from more than 40 contributors. The Taber Art Gallery is free and open to the public Monday through Thursday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.




KeyBank to Food Bank


The Food Bank of Western Massachusetts recently received a $225,000 community-impact grant from KeyBank Foundation, payable over three years, to increase the availability of culturally appropriate food at 25 Mobile Food Bank distribution sites. The program reaches underserved populations throughout Western Mass. that do not have access to healthy foods, including families, seniors, and children.

KeyBank to Food Bank

Pictured: Food Bank Executive Director Andrew Morehouse (far left) and Matthew Hummel, KayBank market president for Connecticut and Massachusetts (second from right), are flanked by their respective team members during the ceremonial check presentation.


Ubora, Ahadi Award Nominations

Through March 31: The Springfield Museums is seeking nominations for the annual Ubora Award and Ahadi Youth Award. These prestigious awards — conferred by the African Hall Subcommittee — are awarded to African-American people from Greater Springfield who have demonstrated commitment, above and beyond, to fields of community service, education, science, humanities and/or the arts. The nomination deadline for both awards is March 31. True to the Swahili word that comprises its name, the Ubora Award recognizes an adult of African heritage who exemplifies excellence in their commitment to creating a better community through service. In 2022, the Ubora Award was given to Dr. Gerald “Bruce” Cutting and Carol Moore Cutting. Named for the Swahili word for promise, the Ahadi Youth Award is presented to a young African-American who excels in academics and performs admirable service to the Greater Springfield community. Eligible candidates must be age 19 or younger, live in or have strong ties to the Greater Springfield area, and be currently enrolled in grades 10, 11, or 12. In 2022, the Ahadi Award was given to Kayla Staley. The Ubora and Ahadi awards will be presented at a ceremony at the Springfield Museums in the fall. Nomination forms are available at springfieldmuseums.org/ubora. In addition to the electronic form, nominations may be emailed to [email protected] or mailed to African Hall Subcommittee, Springfield Museums, 21 Edwards St., Springfield, MA 01103.


Pynchon Award Nominations

Through March 31: The Advertising Club of Western Massachusetts is seeking nominations from throughout Hampden, Hampshire, Franklin, and Berkshire counties for the Pynchon Award, which recognizes citizens of this region who have rendered outstanding commitment to the community. The Order of William Pynchon was established by the Advertising Club in 1915 to recognize and encourage individuals whose lives and achievements typify the ideals of promoting citizenship and the building of a better community in Western Mass. Past recipients include community volunteers, social activists, teachers, journalists, public servants, business leaders, philanthropists, historians, physicians, and war heroes — a diverse group united by their passion for our region. To nominate an individual, submit a letter explaining why the nominee should be considered. Be sure to include biographical information, outstanding accomplishments, examples of service to the community, organizations he or she is or has been active in, and the names, phone numbers, and email addresses of at least three people who can further attest to the nominee’s eligibility for induction into the Order of William Pynchon. The Pynchon trustees reserve the right to eliminate nominations from consideration due to insufficient information. Nominations must be submitted by March 31 to William Pynchon Trustees, Advertising Club of Western Massachusetts, P.O. Box 1022, West Springfield, MA 01090-1022, or by email to [email protected]. The 2023 recipients will be announced in June, with an awards ceremony tentatively scheduled for the fall.


‘Economics of Climate Change’

March 1: Matthew Gibson, associate professor of Economics at Williams College, will give a talk titled “Economics of Climate Change” at 5:30 p.m. at the MCLA Feigenbaum Center for Science and Innovation, Room 121. This event is free and open to the public as part of MCLA’s Green Living Seminar series. Gibson is a research affiliate at the Institute of Labor Economics who works in environmental and labor economics, particularly time use, wage determination, air pollution, and flood risk. He received his PhD from the University of California San Diego. MCLA’s annual Green Living Seminar Series continues through April 19, presenting a series of lectures on the theme of “Capitalism and the Environment.” Every semester, the Green Living Seminar Series centers around a different topic that’s timely and relevant to current sustainability issues. The 2023 series is a presentation of the MCLA Environmental Studies Department. Podcasts will be posted online following each presentation at www.mcla.edu/greenliving.


Celebrity Bartender Fundraiser

March 8: I Found Light Against All Odds announced its first annual Celebrity Bartender fundraising event will take place from 5 to 8 p.m. at Plan B Restaurant in Springfield. The event will help the nonprofit continue to support at-risk youth and families in need and assist with the purchase of a home for homeless teen girls. A silent donor has pledged to match up to $100,000 to help with the purchase of the home. Michelle Brooks-Thompson will be performing at the event. She is an award-winning recording artist, a finalist on the third season of The Voice, a vocal coach, a motivational speaker, and CEO of MBT Music Inc. She has performed at many professional sporting events, singing the national anthem. She will perform “Never Give Up” at the I Found Light Against All Odds fundraiser. Celebrity bartenders for the evening include Kristine Puglisi Allard (Square One), Raymond Berry Jr. (White Lion Brewing Co.), Hampden County Sheriff Nick Cocchi, Dawn Creighton (Community Connector), state Rep. Carlos Gonzalez, Springfield City Councilor Justin Hurst, Nadim Kashouh (Nadim’s Mediterranean Restaurant), Springfield City Council President Jesse Lederman, Waleska Lugo (Inclusive Strategies, LLC), Dan Moriarty (Monson Savings Bank), state Sen. Jake Oliveira, Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno, Payton Shubrick (6 Brick’s), Alethea Stevenson (Center School After School Program), and Jeff Sullivan (New Valley Bank & Trust).


Outlook 2023

March 10: Massachusetts Gov. Maura Healey will keynote the Springfield Regional Chamber’s premier legislative and economic forecasting event of the year from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Taking place in Exhibition Hall at the MassMutual Center, Outlook brings together business leaders and local, state, and federal policymakers to discuss this year’s economic outlook. This will be the first in-person Outlook event since 2020. Along with Healey, Outlook will feature a diverse lineup of speakers, with more presenters being announced within the coming weeks. Tickets for Outlook 2023 cost $75 for Springfield Regional Chamber members and $100 for general admission. The registration deadline is March 6. Reserved tables of 10 are available. Visit dev.springfieldregionalchamber.com/events/details/outlook-2023-6182 to register. For additional information, email [email protected] or call (413) 755-1309.



EANE Leadership Summit

March 29: The Employers Assoc. of the NorthEast will host its annual Leadership Summit at the MassMutual Center in Springfield. With a focus on navigating the new workforce, the summit will showcase tangible ways leaders can adapt to workplace dynamics that have significantly shifted in the three years since the onset of COVID-19. The program will feature an opening keynote from U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Hall of Famer Chris Waddell. A Western Mass. native, Waddell’s keynote will share his insights and experience as the first nearly unassisted paraplegic to summit Mr. Kilimanjaro. The closing keynote will be presented by Mohammad Anwar and Frank Danna, bestselling co-authors of Love as a Business Strategy. Attendees will also have access to 10 breakout sessions with topics including coaching and development, unlocking one’s potential, mastering time management, engaging multiple generations, avoiding legal landmines, mitigating conflict, leading with empathy, and more. Register and learn more at www.eane.org/event/2023-leadership-summit.


Difference Makers Gala

April 27: The 15th annual Difference Makers Gala will be held at the Log Cabin in Holyoke. Since 2009, BusinessWest has been recognizing the work of individuals, groups, businesses, and institutions through this recognition program. The 2023 Difference Makers was announced, and their stories told, in the Feb. 20 issue of BusinessWest and at businesswest.com. Tickets cost $85 each, and tables of 10-12 are available. To purchase tickets, visit businesswest.com/difference-makers. Partner sponsors for this year’s program include Burkhart Pizzanelli P.C., the Royal Law Firm, TommyCar Auto Group, and Westfield Bank.


Pioneer Valley Conference for Women

May 4: The Pioneer Valley Conference for Women will host its first in-person event at the Marriott in downtown Springfield. The theme of the conference is “Let Go.” Leading the speaker lineup are Paulette Piñero, social entrepreneur, writer, and leadership coach, and Yvonne Williams, author of Tested Faith and It’s All About the Shoes. Each will provide a keynote address to an expected audience of more than 300 attendees. The conference highlights topics that were chosen by the women of Western Mass., based on current trends and interests. Alison Maloni, owner of Alison May Public Relations, news anchor for a national network, and bestselling author of Breaking in the News: Build Buzz for Your Brand, will emcee the conference. Local comedian Jess Miller will entertain attendees during a VIP Comedy Kick-off the evening before the conference; tickets cost $35. The cost to attend the Pioneer Valley Conference is $52, which includes breakfast, lunch, a swag bag, and an afternoon celebration with a female DJ and complementary wine and hors d’oeuvres following the full-day conference. Keeping with the goal of accessibility, the conference will also be available virtually for those who are more comfortable watching through a screen. Sessions will be taped for future viewing. For more information on keynote speakers, sponsors, exhibitors, and panelists, visit sheslocal.org/pioneer-valley-conference-for-women.



Daily News

SPRINGFIELD — Feb. 26 was the official 90th anniversary of Peter Pan Bus Lines. The celebration kicked off at the company’s Annual S.T.A.R. Awards & Safety Banquet on Feb. 28 in Worcester to honor employees who have gone the miles for ‘Super Team Achievement & Recognition.’ This year’s spotlight shone on 11 of Peter Pan’s 1 million-, 2 million-, 3 million-, and 4 million-mile motor-coach operators.

“This is the night we celebrate our team’s outstanding performance, superior dedication, positive attitudes, and safe driving,” Peter Pan CEO Peter Picknelly said.

The brightest star at the 2023 S.T.A.R. Awards was Everette Anderson, who has been a Peter Pan motor-coach driver for 53 years, since May 1970. Anderson is the second motor-coach operator in the history of this country to be inducted into the National Safety Hall of Fame for driving 4 million miles without any accidents. The first inductee was Peter Pan motor-coach operator Ed Hope in 2017.

Picknelly described 4 million miles as 4.2 trips to the moon, or 40 times around the earth. “It’s an amazing accomplishment, and I cannot say enough about the dedication and professionalism that Everette Anderson has had behind the wheel. There have only been two drivers in history to achieve 4 million miles without an accident, and both have worked for Peter Pan. This really demonstrates our commitment to safety, and we are very pleased to honor these distinguished drivers.”

Motor-coach operators honored at the S.T.A.R. Awards also included Thomas Reckner and Paul Boie for 3 million miles; Phillandor Knight, Dave Kollisch, Wayne Soloman, and Anthony Wilson for 2 million miles; and Syed Bukhari, Edward Caouette, Frederick Perry, and Horace Wright for 1 million miles.

Peter Pan’s S.T.A.R. Awards marked the first stop for a year-long anniversary celebration. Presenting sponsors for the event were MCI, Transcor Data Services, and Bridgestone Firestone.

Daily News

PITTSFIELD — Dulye Leadership Experience will offer free coaching with its DLE Culture Chat on Friday, March 3, titled “How to Grow Your Career in 2023.”

Moderated by leaders in finance, technology, nonprofits, small business, and other sectors, the program will feature a lively, interactive format and comfortable opportunities for meeting attendees in large- and small-group discussions. Attendees will gain direction, resources, and insights to help them make a career-growth plan that fulfills them professionally and personally.

An engaging conversation will explore how to identify vital skills for advancing in one’s career, step up to new responsibilities out of one’s comfort zone, set trackable development goals, hold oneself accountable, and find an effective mentor to provide guidance.

This free, one-hour program begins at noon. Advance registration is required by clicking here.

Daily News

HOLYOKE — Girls Inc. of the Valley will host a milestone event to provide friends of Girls Inc. and local representatives with campaign fundraising updates for its new location. The event will take place on Tuesday, March 7 from 3:30 to 5 p.m. at 480 Hampden St., Holyoke.

Holyoke Mayor Joshua Garcia, state Rep. Patricia Duffy, and Girls Inc. of the Valley campaign co-chairs will be present at the event to make remarks. The fundraising thermometer sign will be updated as Girls Inc. of the Valley is closing in on $5 million raised. PeoplesBank will be financing the project through a loan to Girls Inc. of the Valley, in addition to a tax-exempt bond from MassDevelopment. This campaign was launched in 2018 with a mission to expand the physical footprint of Girls Inc. of the Valley and establish a permanent headquarters in Holyoke, allowing the organization to serve a larger community.

“Throughout this journey, we have gained a great deal of visibility, and people have been able to learn about who we are, what we do, and why Girls Inc. is so important to this region,” said Suzanne Parker, executive director at Girls Inc. of the Valley. “It’s been a great opportunity to tell our story and get people involved.”

Daily News

AMHERST — Scientists at UMass Massachusetts Amherst recently announced the invention of a nanowire 10,000 times thinner than a human hair that can be cheaply grown by common bacteria and tuned to ‘smell’ a vast array of chemical tracers — including those given off by people afflicted with a wide range of medical conditions, such as asthma and kidney disease.

Thousands of these specially tuned wires, each sniffing out a different chemical, can be layered onto tiny, wearable sensors, allowing healthcare providers an unprecedented tool for monitoring potential health complications. Since these wires are grown by bacteria, they are organic, biodegradable, and far greener than any inorganic nanowire.

To make these breakthroughs, which were detailed in the journal Biosensors and Bioelectrics, senior authors Derek Lovley, distinguished professor of Microbiology at UMass Amherst, and Jun Yao, professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering in the College of Engineering at UMass Amherst, needed to look no farther than their own noses.

“Human noses have hundreds of receptors, each sensitive to one specific molecule,” Yao said. “They are vastly more sensitive and efficient than any mechanical or chemical device that could be engineered. We wondered how we could leverage the biological design itself rather than rely on a synthetic material.”

In other words, the team wondered if they could work with nature to sniff out disease — and it turns out they have done just that.

The answer begins with a bacterium known as Geobacter sulfurreducens, which Lovley and Yao previously used to create a biofilm capable of producing long-term, continuous electricity from one’s sweat. G. sulfurreducens has the surprising natural ability to grow tiny, electrically conductive nanowires.

But G. sulfurreducens is a finicky bacterium that needs specific conditions in which to grow, making it difficult to use at scale. “What we’ve done,” Lovley said, “is to take the ‘nanowire gene’ — called pilin — out of G. sulfurreducens and splice it into the DNA of Escherichia coli, one of the most widespread bacteria in the world.”

Once the pilin gene was removed from G. sulfurreducens, Lovley, Yao, and the team modified it to include a specific peptide, known as DLESFL, which is extremely sensitive to ammonia — a chemical often present in the breath of those with kidney disease. When they then spliced the modified pilin gene into E. coli’s DNA, the genetically tweaked bacterium sprouted tiny nanowires bristling with the ammonia-sensing peptide. The team then harvested these ammonia-sensitive nanowires and built them into a sensor.

“Genetically modifying the nanowires made them 100 times more responsive to ammonia than they were originally,” said Yassir Lekbach, the paper’s co-lead author and a postdoctoral researcher in Microbiology at UMass Amherst. “The microbe-produced nanowires function much better as sensors than previously described sensors fabricated with traditional silicon or metal nanowires.”

And there’s no need to limit these new sensors to only ammonia and kidney disease. Toshiyuki Ueki, the paper’s other co-lead author and research professor in Microbiology at UMass Amherst, noted that “it’s possible to design unique peptides, each of which specifically binds a molecule of interest. So, as more tracer molecules emitted by the body and which are specific to a particular disease are identified, we can make sensors that incorporate hundreds of different chemical-sniffing nanowires to monitor all sorts of health conditions.”

Traditional nanowires, made from silicon or carbon fiber, can be highly toxic — carbon nanotubes are themselves carcinogens — and end up as non-biodegradable e-waste. Their raw materials can require enormous amounts of energy and chemical inputs to harvest and process, as well as leaving a deep environmental impact. But because Lovley and Yao’s nanowires are grown from common bacteria, they are far more sustainable.

“One of the most exciting things about this line of research is that we’re taking electrical engineering in a fundamentally new direction,” Yao said. “Instead of wires made from scarce raw resources that won’t biodegrade, the beauty of these protein nanowires is that you can use life’s genetic design to build a stable, versatile, low impact, and cost-effective platform.”

This research was supported by the National Science Foundation and nurtured by the Institute for Applied Life Sciences at UMass Amherst, which combines deep and interdisciplinary expertise from 29 departments to translate fundamental research into innovations that benefit human health and well-being.


Sound Advice


By Trevor Brice, Esq.


Trevor Brice

Trevor Brice

On Jan. 24, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) released new guidance for employers on how and when to accommodate applicants and employees with hearing disabilities.

The guidance covers when an employer may ask an applicant or employee questions about a hearing condition and how it should treat voluntary disclosures of a condition, what types of reasonable accommodations applicants or employees with hearing disabilities may need, how an employer should handle safety concerns about applicants and employees with hearing disabilities, and how an employer can ensure that no employee is harassed because of a hearing disability or any other disability.

This guidance is an update to the original guidance that the EEOC released regarding accommodations for deafness and hearing disabilities in the workplace on May 7, 2014.


Questioning Employees and Applicants on Hearing Disabilities

In general, before offering an individual a job, avoid asking the applicant about hearing disabilities or any disabilities or requiring an applicant to have a medical examination before a conditional job offer. However, the limited exception to this general rule is if an applicant has an obvious impairment or has voluntarily disclosed an impairment, and the employer reasonably believes that the applicant will require an accommodation to complete the application process or to perform the job because of the condition.

If this is the case, the employer may ask if the applicant will need an accommodation and what type. However, as a best practice in the pre-offer stage, it is prudent for an employer to stick to questions about the applicant’s ability to perform the position’s essential functions, with or without reasonable accommodation, such as whether the applicant can respond quickly to instructions in a noisy, fast-paced work environment.

After making a conditional job offer, an employer may ask questions about the applicant’s health (including questions about an applicant’s disability, including deafness and hearing disabilities) and may require a medical examination as long as all applicants for the same type of job are subjected to the same requirement.

For current employees, an employer may ask disability-related questions or require an employee to have a medical examination when the employer knows about a particular employee’s medical condition, has observed performance problems, and reasonably believes that the performance problems are related to a medical condition. However, the EEOC notes that employers should take precautions in this situation, as performance problems often are unrelated to a medical condition, and the problems should be handled in accordance with the employer’s existing policies regarding performance.

Regarding hearing conditions for current employees, an employer also may ask an employee about a hearing condition when it has a reasonable belief that the employee will be unable to safely perform the essential functions of the job because of it. Further, an employer may ask an employee about their hearing to the extent necessary to support the employee’s request for accommodations, to enable the employee to participate in a voluntary wellness program, or to verify the employee’s use of sick leave related to a hearing condition if the employer requires all employees to submit a doctor’s note to justify their use of sick leave.


Possible Accommodations and Safety-Related Exclusions

The EEOC suggests several reasonable accommodations that could be suggested or employed for hearing-disabled individuals. This non-exhaustive list includes a sign-language interpreter for use in interviews or during employment, assistive technology (including video relay or video remote interpreting services, hearing-aid-compatible telephone headsets, etc.), appropriate written memos and notes, note-taking assistance, work-area adjustments (moving a desk away from a noisy area, for example), time off, altering non-essential job functions, and reassignment to a vacant position.

Employers should remember that there is no magic word for requesting a reasonable accommodation; an individual simply has to tell the employer that he or she needs an adjustment or change at work because of an impairment. Employers do not have to provide reasonable accommodations if doing so would be an undue hardship, meaning that providing reasonable accommodation would result in significant difficulty or expense. Additionally, employers do not have to eliminate an essential function of a job, tolerate poor performance, or excuse violations of conduct to provide reasonable accommodations.

There is another consideration for employees with hearing disabilities. Employers may also exclude an individual with a hearing disability from a job for safety reasons when the individual poses a direct threat, which is defined as a significant risk of substantial harm to the individual or others because of a disability that cannot be eliminated or reduced through reasonable accommodations. If an employer believes there is such a direct threat, the employer should conduct an individualized assessment of the individual’s present ability to perform the essential functions of the job.

Considerations should include the duration of the risk, the nature and severity of potential harm, the likelihood that the potential harm will occur, and the imminence of the potential harm. The harm must be serious and likely to occur, not remote and speculative. Finally, the employer must consider whether any reasonable accommodations, such as the ones above, would reduce or eliminate the risk of direct threat. The EEOC provides examples of how this balancing test should work.

If employers have questions relating to this balancing test, or regarding the new guidance for hearing disabilities or disabilities and reasonable accommodations in general, it is prudent to contact legal counsel in order to avoid any potential liability.


Trevor Brice is an attorney who specializes in labor and employment-law matters at the Royal Law Firm LLP, a woman-owned, women-managed corporate law firm that is certified as a women’s business enterprise with the Massachusetts Supplier Diversity Office, the National Assoc. of Minority and Women Owned Law Firms, and the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council.


A Changing Landscape?


By John Gannon, Esq.


John Gannon

John Gannon

Last month, President Biden gave his State of the Union address, during which he hyped the legislative accomplishments made during his time in the Oval Office. One of the topics that made the list: non-compete agreements.

Specifically, the president discussed the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) proposed rule to ban all non-compete agreements in the workplace. The rule could affect the employment terms of more than 30 million American workers.



As many readers are likely aware, Massachusetts state law already restricts the use of non-compete agreements in the workplace. The Massachusetts Noncompetition Agreement Act (MNAA), which was passed back in 2018, prohibits non-compete agreements with non-exempt employees. In addition, non-compete agreements are enforceable only if an employee is terminated for cause. Under the MNAA, non-competes generally must be limited to 12 months, and must be supported by garden leave (i.e., paying the employee some amount of money during the non-compete period).

The MNAA does not prohibit agreements restricting employees from soliciting business with customers or clients, nor does it impact non-disclosure agreements meant to protect dissemination of trade secrets. And non-compete agreements entered into after the effective date of the MNAA — Oct. 1, 2018 — are not affected.

On Jan. 5 of this year, the FTC proposed its own rule that would ban all non-compete agreements, with limited exceptions. The proposed rule also bans ‘de facto’ non-competes, which could include anti-solicitation and non-disclosure agreements, depending on how they are written.

According to the FTC, “when employers use non-compete clauses to restrict workers from moving freely, they have the power to suppress wages and avoid having to compete to attract workers. Based on existing evidence, non-compete clauses also reduce the wages of workers who aren’t subject to non-competes by preventing jobs from opening in their industry.” The FTC estimates that “the proposed rule could increase workers’ earnings across industries and job levels by $250 billion to $296 billion per year.”


The Proposed Rule

The FTC’s proposed rule would ban all non-compete agreements between employers and employees, as well as independent contractors. The rule defines a non-compete as “a contractual term between an employer and a worker that prevents the worker from seeking or accepting employment.”

This is not limited to traditional non-compete provisions that limit an employee from seeking work with a competitor. The rule would encompass post-employment restrictions that ostensibly prohibit the employee from seeking future employment. Certainly, an argument could be made that overly broad non-solicitation or non-disclosure agreements have the effect of prohibiting a worker from going to work elsewhere.

Unlike the MNAA, the FTC’s proposed rule would rescind all employment non-compete agreements currently in place. It would also require employers to inform employees currently subject to a non-compete agreement that the agreement is no longer valid.


Strong Resistance

Not surprisingly, the FTC’s proposed rule does not sit well with businesses.

Calling the rule “blantantly unlawful,” the U.S. Chamber of Commerce noted that, “since the agency’s creation over 100 years ago, Congress has never delegated the FTC anything close to the authority it would need to promulgate such a competition rule.

“Attempting to ban non-compete clauses in all employment circumstances,” the chamber went on, “overturns well-established state laws which have long governed their use and ignores the fact that, when appropriately used, non-compete agreements are an important tool in fostering innovation and preserving competition.”

The FTC has invited public notice and comments on the proposed rule through March 20. Businesses and others can submit comments at www.regulations.gov/document/FTC-2023-0007-0001. After the close of this comment period, the FTC will publish a final rule, incorporating the input it receives.

This will just be the beginning. After the rule is issued, employers and trade associations are certain to challenge the rule in court. Ultimately, the legality of this rule may be decided by the U.S. Supreme Court, which is precisely what happened with the recent rule proposed by OSHA mandating a COVID ‘vaccine-or-test’ policy for larger employers. This rule was struck down by the Supreme Court earlier this year.


Next Steps for Employers

Many businesses in Massachusetts went through a non-compete process and procedure review back in 2018, due to the MNAA. However, employers need to understand that the proposed FTC rule goes beyond traditional covenants banning employees from working for competitors post-employment. It would be wise for employers to review non-solicitation and non-disclosure agreements currently in place to be sure they will be enforceable should the FTC’s proposed rule become the law of the land.

Businesses should also enhance any agreements meant to protect trade secrets and/or client relationships with suitable policies and procedures. This involves making sure confidential information stays confidential by limiting data access to ‘need-to-know’ groups. It also involves implementing polices geared toward ensuring that sensitive company information stays on site and cannot be accessed on an employee’s personal device.

Finally, employers should carefully follow the progress of the FTC’s proposed rule and work with legal counsel in drafting or enforcing non-compete and non-solicitation agreements going forward.


John Gannon is a partner with the Springfield-based law firm Skoler, Abbott & Presser, P.C., specializing in employment law and regularly counseling employers on compliance with state and federal laws; (413) 737-4753; [email protected]


Petition Denied

By Michael McAndrew, Esq. and Michael Roundy, Esq.


Michael McAndrew

Michael McAndrew

Michael Roundy

Michael Roundy

The courts have widely established that cannabis businesses, even if compliant with state cannabis laws, are not protected by federal bankruptcy laws because they operate in a federally illegal industry. But can an employee of a cannabis business who has no ownership interest in that business file for bankruptcy individually under Chapter 13 of the Bankruptcy Code?

This question was answered with a resounding ‘no’ by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Massachusetts in its recent decision in In re Blumsack, when the court dismissed such an employee’s bankruptcy petition in its entirety.

The would-be debtor, Scott Blumsack, had worked in the Massachusetts cannabis industry since 2021. At the time of the decision, he was the general manager of a cannabis business that manufactured, retailed, and wholesaled cannabis and cannabis products legally under Massachusetts law. In this role, Blumsack supervised employees, set up the retail operation, managed all aspects of the retail operation, and regularly acted as a ‘budtender,’ a role in which he regularly distributed cannabis to his employer’s customers. He was appropriately licensed under Massachusetts law to dispense cannabis, but had no ownership interest in his employer’s business.

In 2021, Blumsack filed a voluntary petition for reorganization under Chapter 13 of the Bankruptcy Code and submitted a plan of reorganization in which he proposed making payments to creditors out of the salary that he earned working in his employer’s cannabis operation. In the alternative, he proposed a plan for reorganization that would be funded out of his wife’s retirement funds, which arose from her wages unconnected to the cannabis industry.

In response to Blumsack’s proposed plans, the bankruptcy trustee moved to dismiss his bankruptcy petition, arguing that the proposed plans of reorganization could not be confirmed because the debtor’s activities in connection with his employment violate federal law. By working for a cannabis retailer, Blumsack had violated, and continued to violate, federal law by distributing cannabis and conspiring with his employer to violate federal law. The trustee argued that confirmation of the debtor’s plan would necessarily require the trustee to administer proceeds derived from such illegal activity.

Blumsack countered that, if the court adopted the trustee’s reasoning, any employee of a marijuana-related business (such as web designers and warehouse workers serving companies in the industry) could also be deprived of bankruptcy protections because of the cannabis industry’s wide-spectrum contributions to the state’s economy.

The court disagreed. Describing the case as one of “apparent first impression” because no on-point decisions had been found, the court noted that, for approval of a Chapter 13 plan of reorganization, the plan is required by statute to be submitted “in good faith and not by any means forbidden by law.” If a plan is not submitted in good faith, it may be dismissed “for cause.” Although neither ‘good faith’ nor ‘cause’ are defined in the bankruptcy code, both terms have been interpreted in case law throughout the country.

The Bankruptcy Court in this case held that, because Blumsack’s proposed plan of reorganization was funded by wages that were derived from participation in a cannabis retail operation and he continued to engage in the cannabis industry — federally illegal activity — while his bankruptcy case was pending, the plan was not proposed in good faith and was proposed by a means forbidden by law. Specifically, the court found that Blumsack’s job duties “require that he act in violation of federal criminal statutes.” Because of this, his plan would require the Chapter 13 trustee to “knowingly administer wages derived from an active participant in a criminal enterprise.” As such, the court could not find, under an objective standard, that the petition had been filed in good faith.

As a result, the Bankruptcy Court dismissed Blumsack’s petition for cause, noting that a lack of good faith is well-established grounds for dismissal for cause. The court also dismissed Blumsack’s alternative proposed plan for reorganization, despite the fact that it was to be funded by money not derived from the cannabis industry, because even under such a plan, Blumsack “objectively lacks good faith” by seeking the benefits and protections of federal bankruptcy law while simultaneously continuing to earn income from conduct that violates federal criminal law. In short, his plan, however funded, was tainted by his continued federally illegal activity.

While Blumsack’s counsel warned of a slippery slope, the court was unpersuaded and stated that it “must decide only the case it has before it.” The Bankruptcy Court made clear that its decision was cabined to the particular facts of this case, and that questions of good faith require a case-by-case analysis. Nonetheless, it is likely that other courts may take their cues from this decision to prevent others employed by cannabis companies or by companies serving the cannabis industry from filing for Chapter 13 bankruptcy.

How far will the reasoning of the court extend? To employees who do not directly participate in distributing cannabis products? To service providers who generate their own income by serving cannabis clients and thereby assisting them with their federally illegal activities? The Bankruptcy Court’s decision provides no guidance on these issues.

Absent congressional decriminalization of cannabis, issues at the intersection of state and federal laws affecting the cannabis industry will continue to be addressed on an ad hoc, case-by-case basis by federal regulatory agencies, prosecutors, and courts. For now, we can add individual bankruptcy protections to the growing list of complex issues affecting those working in, or for, the cannabis industry.


Michael McAndrew is an associate, and Michael Roundy a partner, at the Springfield-based law firm Bulkley Richardson.

Workforce Development

Learning Experience


Aundrea Paulk

Aundrea Paulk says no one should think they know everything about leadership.

Aundrea Paulk says many of her friends and colleagues call her a “sponge.” And she likes to use that phrase herself.

She believes it conveys what she considers to be a real and almost unquenchable thirst for knowledge and insight into how she can be a better leader, a better entrepreneur — and a better person.

“I like to learn … and I don’t think anyone gets to, or should get to, a place where they get comfortable and think they know it all when it comes to leadership,” said Paulk, director of Marketing & Communications for Caring Health Center in Springfield and owner of her own event-planning business called Soiree Mi. “Leadership is so expansive, and not only here at the Caring Health Center, but with my own business, I want to make sure that I’m constantly filling my well with knowledge so that, as a leader, I can show up in my best capacity, but also give those nuggets, as they call them, to others that are looking to grow their own leadership skills.”

It was this ongoing quest for knowledge — and desire to pass on those ‘nuggets’ — that prompted Paulk to put her name into consideration last fall when BusinessWest was gifting a slot at the two-day, immersive Dulye Leadership Experience (DLE) in the Berkshires.

Her self-nomination was one of many received by the magazine, and it certainly resonated with those deciding who would partake in this program of intense learning, networking, and professional development.

Paulk, a member of BusinessWest’s Forty Under 40 class of 2022, said she made the very most of her experience and came away with nuggets to share, a better appreciation of the need to sell herself and not just her company — or companies, in this case — and, overall, some solid takeaways on how to be a better, more effective leader.

“After completing the Dulye Leadership Experience immersion training, I learned how to better lead my department and, more importantly, how to recognize the strengths that I already have and better utilize them,” she said. “As the owner of Soiree Mi, it is important that I tap into those strengths to grow my business to develop relationships and gain partnerships that will enhance the overall community. These partnerships have allowed Soiree Mi to move from its infancy stage into an established, successful entity.”

Elaborating, Paulk said she and her staff recently conducted their own day-long retreat at Caring Health Center, and a good portion of the agenda focused on topics that were brought up at the DLE immersion training, including well-being, improved communication, and “networking with a purpose.”


Dive Right In

The DLE, as noted earlier, is a two-day, immersive program. It was conceived by Linda Dulye, founder of Dulye & Co., which helps leaders and their organizations cultivate magnetic cultures where employees want to stay and grow. During a painfully slow period for the company in the fall of 2008, their height of the Great Recession, she created the DLE, a nonprofit organization, to help recent college graduates be more workforce-ready and able to form relationships and sell themselves.

Over the years, the DLE evolved, and programming shifted to attract, develop, and retain young professionals in the Berkshires. The descriptions of the programs offered during the immersion provide real insight into how it helps attendees grow professionally and thrive in the modern workplace.

“The workplace has become more diverse, dispersed, digital, and dynamic,” reads the summation for a program titled “Create Connections for Differences.” “These changes create opportunities for growth, learning, and creativity, but they also cause disconnection. This session reveals strategies for working across and with differences to increase effectiveness, belongingness, creativity, and communication.”

A program called “(Re)train Your Communication Muscle” was described this way: “The pandemic has atrophied our social muscles — so much so that many find it difficult to interact with others. We have to retrain ourselves to work better. Fortunately, these muscles are resilient.”

The session was led by Marc Williams, communications coach and author of the books Beyond Limitations and The Rules of Engagement for Public Speaking. Paulk said she found the session helpful, and Williams even more so, especially when it came to the broad assignment of branding herself and building that brand.

She said one assignment attendees were given was to evaluate and update their professional LinkedIn page, and to fully understand its importance when it comes to their ‘brand.’

“We had to assess what we thought other people did without asking them, by just looking at their profile,” she explained while recalling the exercise. “What we found is that most of us don’t use our LinkedIn pages unless we’re looking for a job — that’s the only time people really go in and update it.

“That’s not what we should be doing,” she went on. “We should be making sure our professional and personal brand are on point. He [Williams] assessed and provided great feedback and evaluation of my page and how I can improve it.”

But the session she found most compelling, and the one that probably yielded the most ‘nuggets,’ she said, was one titled “Create a Culture of Well-being Within Your Team,” led by Andrea Lein, a self-described “positive psychology expert.”

“More employees are citing well-being as a key factor in deciding where and how they choose to work,” reads the brief description. “Experts believe we are transitioning to the next global crisis: a mental-health pandemic. Are you and your organization ready?”

Paulk said the session gave her plenty to think about when it comes to being ready, and it is prompting her to be more proactive on this issue.

“I always thought of well-being as self-care and the physical side of the equation,” she told BusinessWest. “I forgot about the importance of social well-being, communication as well-being, how we talk to one another; is it positive?”

Elaborating, she said that, while she still asks her staff members how their weekend went, she now looks to go deeper and find out how people are doing with their physical health, their financial health, their mental health, and how they are faring as they try to balance life and work.


Knowledge Is Power

Overall, Paulk said her willingness to take part in the leadership immersion program is a logical expression of her desire to continue learning and refine and build upon her leadership skills, something she believes all young professionals — and even those not quite so young — should be doing.

“The importance of continuing to develop your skills is critical to you as a human being and to what you want to put out in the world, the legacy you want to leave behind,” she explained. “If I stay stuck in a way of thinking or in the way I show up, I’m doing a disservice to myself; I’m doing a disservice to those I’m supposed to be in charge of and help grow.

“That’s why I continue to learn,” she went on. “I feel like there’s never a time in my life — I don’t care if I’m 100 — that I want to stop learning, and learning in different ways.”

That’s why she wanted to be at the Dulye Leadership Experience in November, and that’s why she’s a sponge, always looking to fill her well with knowledge.




The numbers are alarming — on many levels.

From July 2021 to July 2022, more than 57,000 more people moved out of the state than into it, one of the highest rates of what is being called ‘domestic outmigration’ in the country. And if you go back to April 2020, the number soars beyond 110,000.

That’s a lot of people who decided they couldn’t make it in Massachusetts anymore, or didn’t want to try. And these numbers should get everyone’s attention, because these departures are not good for individual cities and towns, or for the Commonwealth’s technology-driven economy.

It’s enough of a problem that Gov. Maura Healey made it one of the focal points of her inaugural address last month, stating “this is greatest state in the union, but people are leaving at some of the highest rates in the country — giving up on the Massachusetts story.”

It’s possible that some people are giving up because of the cold (and we don’t even have as much of that as we used to), or the traffic (in the Boston area), or the decidedly liberal nature of the State House, or even the ‘millionare’s tax.’ This might explain why more than 20,000 of those who have left have moved to New Hampshire, where taxes are much lower and elected leaders are much more conservative.

But it seems clear that most are leaving because they simply can’t afford to live here anymore.

That’s especially true in the eastern part of the state, where taxes are sky-high, home prices are through the roof, and other costs, including childcare, are becoming increasingly prohibitive.

“Affordability in Massachusetts has dropped dramatically,” Nadia Evangelou, senior economist for the National Assoc. of Realtors, told the Boston Globe recently.

We have a few thoughts on this problem. First, state leaders need to do something to address the housing problem here. The term ‘affordable housing’ has a shifting definition in Massachusetts and other states where there are plentiful, attractive jobs, but however it is defined, the state simply needs to create more of it. If it doesn’t, more people will leave or, in the case of graduating college students, settle somewhere else.

In the meantime, economic-development leaders in Western Mass. should double down on their efforts to try to convince people that if they want to escape the high prices (if not the cold), they don’t have to leave the state; they just have to look west of Worcester.

Indeed, while some communities in this part of the state are expensive, most are quite reasonable. And there isn’t nearly as much traffic. And the costs of childcare are considerably lower. And with the advent of remote work, you can have all of this and still work for IT and financial-services companies based in Boston or Cambridge.

Those of us Western Mass. know all this, and most people living in Newton, Wellesley, or Lexington know as well, but it wouldn’t hurt for this region to market itself more aggressively, especially in the eastern part of the state.

Doing so would benefit not only the Western Mass. region, where many communities have lost population and professionals of all kinds are needed, but the state as well.

Indeed, until ways can be found to somehow make this state, and especially the Boston area, more affordable, we need to focus on ways to inspire people to move from one end of the state to the other, instead of out of it altogether.



By Meredith Wise

DEI Initiatives are very much in our conversations. However, the HR Trends 2023 survey by McLean & Co. show that actions on these initiatives have stalled for the second year in a row.

This study highlights human-resources priorities and challenges, comparing current-year results to prior years. In 2021, DEI efforts jumped from eighth place in 2020 to fourth place largely due to national and global conversations and actions around equity and social justice. In 2022, these efforts fell to fifth place, and this year they have dropped to sixth on the HR priority list.

In our work helping companies develop roadmaps for DEI, a handful of key areas are lacking: dedicated time to focus on DEI, leadership support, training, and resources.

According to the study, governance, leadership buy-in, strategic discussions, and data collection are the common roadblocks to moving DEI efforts forward. Actions and planning can refocus your organization’s initiatives.

Leadership: Senior leaders should model DEI behaviors in all their interactions and communications. Training alone will not move your goals along. Moving beyond awareness training to competency learning opportunities will help elevate the support from leadership. The data in the study demonstrated that the 40% of organizations that leverage competency-based training are more likely to be high-performing in DEI compared to those leveraging awareness-based training.

Communications: DEI-related topics and performance should be woven into regular communication cadences from leaders and HR functions. Active communication and discussions about initiatives, actions, and challenges need to happen.

Formal DEI Strategy: Sixty-three percent of respondents indicated they did not have a formal or documented DEI strategy.This percentage has remained stable over the past three years. Policies and practices document how DEI programs will operate in the organization. These policies should address how DEI considerations are integrated, including the employee experience, performance management, recruiting, retention, advancement, compensation, and more.

Data: Understanding that time is at a premium for HR teams and professionals, initiatives in 2023 may best be focused on data collection and analysis. This data will shape strategy, demonstrate gaps and urgency to the organization, and allow for informed decisions on a formal strategy and governance.

There is no one-size-fits-all solution; however, with a combination of leadership support, resources, and a dedicated team, organizations will more likely become high performing versus those without this focus.

According to the study, recruiting is once again the number-one priority on HR professionals’ minds for the third year in a row. Although DEI has fallen further down the list, this work does not exist in a silo — maintaining momentum on DEI efforts will support other priorities, including talent attraction and retention.

It’s also good news that embedding DEI into organizational culture and processes does not require a degree in advanced physics. All that’s needed to operationalize DEI is the right commitment, planning, and structure.


Meredith Wise is president of the Employers Assoc. of the NorthEast. This article first appeared on the EANE blog; eane.org

People on the Move
Danielle Ren Holley

Danielle Ren Holley

Danielle Ren Holley, noted legal educator and social-justice scholar, will become the 20th president of Mount Holyoke College on July 1. The board of trustees unanimously elected Holley following a thorough and inclusive search process. Holley is the first Black woman in the 186-year history of Mount Holyoke College to serve as permanent president, and the fourth Black woman in history to lead one of the original Seven Sisters colleges. Since 2014, she has served as dean and professor of law at the Howard University School of Law. She is widely viewed as having renewed Howard’s historically important law school and raised its stature and visibility as a leading educator of social- and racial-justice lawyers. Prior to joining the Howard School of Law in 2014, Holley served as distinguished professor for Education Law and associate dean for Academic Affairs at the University of South Carolina. Earlier in her career, she served on the faculty of Hofstra University School of Law and practiced law as an associate at Fulbright & Jaworski in Houston. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Yale University and a juris doctorate from Harvard Law School, and she was a law clerk to Judge Carl Stewart on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. She currently serves as co-chair of the board of directors of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law. She also sits on the boards of the Law School Admissions Council and the Howard University Middle School of Mathematics and Science. She is a Liberty Fellow through the Aspen Global Leadership Network and was also a fellow with the American Council of Education at Brown University in 2021-22, and currently serves on the board of the Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs at Brown University. She is a member of Delta Sigma Theta.


Meyers Brothers Kalicka, P.C. recently announced nine promotions: Samantha Calvao and Andrea Latour to associate; Mallory Beauregard, Olivia Calcasola, Lauren Foley, Keara Moulton, Kelly Moulton, and Francine Murphy to senior associate; and Sarah Rose Stack to director of Marketing & Recruiting.

Samantha Calvao

Samantha Calvao

Andrea Latour

Andrea Latour

Mallory Beauregard

Mallory Beauregard

Olivia Calcasola

Olivia Calcasola

Lauren Foley

Lauren Foley

Keara Moulton

Keara Moulton

Kelly Moulton

Kelly Moulton

Francine Murphy

Francine Murphy

Sarah Rose Stack

Sarah Rose Stack

• Calvao started her career as a paraprofessional at Meyers Brothers Kalicka and was recently awarded the PwC LLP Scholarship by the Massachusetts Society of Certified Public Accountants. She received her associate degree in accounting from Holyoke Community College and her bachelor’s degree in accounting from the University of Southern New Hampshire. She is also a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) and the Massachusetts Society of Certified Public Accountants (MSCPA).

• Latour began her career with Meyers Brothers Kalicka, P.C. in February 2011. She primarily focuses on client bookkeeping and writeup work including monthly reconciliations, accounts payable, accounts receivable, payroll, and quarterly payroll returns and tax filings, as well as preparing corporate and personal tax returns. She received her associate degree from Becker College and is a member of AICPA and MSCPA.

• Beauregard began her career with Meyers Brothers Kalicka and has been a member of the MBK team for three years. She works on a diverse range of engagements, including not-for-profit, commercial, and review and compilation engagements. She received a bachelor of business administration degree in accounting from UMass Amherst and is currently studying for her MBA at UMass Lowell. She is also a member of AICPA and MSCPA.

• Calcasola has been a member of the taxation department at Meyers Brothers Kalicka, P.C. (MBK) for one year. Prior to MBK, she worked for two years as a senior corporate tax associate for a Boston-based firm. In her new role, she will be working on larger, multi-state returns and strengthening her niche in business taxation. She holds a bachelor’s and master’s degrees in accounting from UMass Amherst and is a member of AICPA and MSCPA.

• Foley started her journey with accounting at Meyers Brothers Kalicka in 2020. She focuses on commercial and individual tax returns as well as compilation and review engagements. She graduated from UMass Lowell with a bachelor’s degree in business administration and a master’s degree in accounting. She is also a member of AICPA and MSCPA.

• Keara Moulton began her career with Meyers Brothers Kalicka as a tax intern in January 2020. In addition to being a member of the tax department, she is a leader in the firm for various community-service and corporate-culture initiatives. As a senior associate, she will be working on more complex tax returns and helping clients prepare for deadlines throughout the year, as well as expanding her knowledge in the firm’s cannabis niche. She received her bachelor’s degree in accounting and sports management summa cum laude from Elms College and is currently studying for the CPA exam. She is also a member of AICPA and MSCPA.

• Kelly Moulton has worked in public accounting since 2020 and works on a diverse range of engagements, including accounting and audit, not-for-profit, and HUD engagements. In her new role as a senior associate, she will be leading more engagements as an ‘in-charge’ and also be taking on more detail review. She holds a bachelor’s degree in business management and accounting from Elms College and is a candidate for an MBA in accounting at Fitchburg State. She is a member of AICPA and MSCPA.

• Murphy joined MBK in 2013 with significant tax-preparation experience and a special focus in tax preparation for not-for-profit organizations and individuals. She will be taking on a larger leadership role with the firm’s tax-exempt clients, preparing larger 990 returns and reviewing smaller tax-exempt clients. She will also have more opportunities to assist with tax-planning and tax-projection projects for a wide breadth of clients and prepare more complex corporate consolidated returns. She holds an associate degree in accounting from Holyoke Community College and is a candidate for a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Westfield State University. She is also a member of AICPA and MSCPA.

• Stack joined Meyers Brothers Kalicka in early 2020 to spearhead its marketing and recruiting efforts. With more than 15 years of digital marketing, design, and communications experience, she brought a unique perspective to the firm and attracted new talent. In her new role as a director, she will be expanding the marketing department, enhancing the niche-development program, and developing a new marketing advisory service line. She earned a bachelor’s degree in interdisciplinary studies from UMass Amherst and is a candidate for a master’s degree in communication with two concentrations, digital communication and corporate and nonprofit communication, from Johns Hopkins University. She is a member of the Assoc. for Accountant Marketing, the American Marketing Assoc., and CPAmerica, and is the marketing committee co-chair for the Massachusetts Society of Certified Public Accountants.


Laura Freeman

Laura Freeman

Kelly Galanis

Kelly Galanis

Holyoke Community College (HCC) recently welcomed two new colleagues to its Institutional Advancement team: Laura Freeman as manager of Stewardship and Donor Relations, and Kelly Galanis as manager of Advancement Services. Prior to HCC, Freeman worked as the Alumni Relations program coordinator at UMass Amherst and VIP Services representative at MGM Springfield. She brings extensive experience to the development team in event planning (virtual and in person), project management, scholarship administration, and volunteer management. She holds a master’s degree in strategic fundraising and philanthropy from Bay Path University and attended Nichols College for her bachelor’s degree in business administration. In her new role, Galanis will provide leadership and direction for the Advancement division’s fundraising operations, including database management, prospect research and moves management, advancement reporting, gift recording, data integrity, and data security. She joins HCC with more than 20 years of experience in higher education, including 14 at Westfield State University. She holds a master’s degree in communication and information management and is currently pursuing her doctorate in education in higher education leadership and organizational studies at Bay Path University.


Joshua Griffing

Joshua Griffing

Excel Dryer Inc., manufacturer of the XLERATOR Hand Dryer, announced that Joshua Griffing has been promoted and will serve as the director of International Sales in addition to his current role as director of Marketing. He joined the Excel Dryer team in 2022 as director of Marketing, bringing more than two decades of experience in sales and marketing for international organizations. A graduate of Central Connecticut State University with a degree in international business, Griffing has held roles including executive vice president at Sportika Export, president of Raw Food Central LLC, and director of Sales and Marketing at Joining Technologies Inc. In his new role at Excel Dryer, he will be responsible for managing the export sales team, creating targeted territory-expansion plans, negotiating key account agreements, and increasing brand awareness globally.


Nikki Beck

Nikki Beck

Peggy Twardowski

Peggy Twardowski

CitySpace recently welcomed two new members to its board’s executive team. Nikki Beck will serve as CitySpace’s vice president, and Peggy Twardowski is the new clerk of the organization. Beck has been a board member of CitySpace since 2017. She is the production manager for the Smith College Theatre Department and also works at the Academy of Music and as a freelance stage manager. She is passionate about connecting theater organizations and has been sending a weekly newsletter of theatre events (Pioneer Valley Theatre News) since 2015. A Mount Holyoke College graduate and CitySpace board member since 2021, Twardowski is the Business Information director for the video-game industry’s largest representation agency, Digital Development Management, where she oversees research and data services. She has sought ways to actively promote the arts in the area, using her experience from top-grossing video-game crowd-funded campaigns to advise regional creators on Indiegogo and Kickstarter campaigns. Previously, she organized the Paint & Pixel Festival, a small press expo for regional children’s book illustrators, comic artists, and web comic creators.


Craig Shrimpton

Craig Shrimpton

Earlier this month, Cohn & Company Real Estate added Craig Shrimpton to its team of real-estate professionals. He brings more than 25 years of service in information security and technology consulting. Shrimpton is a veteran and a member of the Realtor Assoc. of the Pioneer Valley and the National Assoc. of Realtors.


Whittlesey, an assurance, advisory, tax, and technology firm, recently welcomed the newest manager to its team. Alanna Madsen, CPA is the latest tax professional to join the firm’s growing leadership team. Madsen has more than 14 years of public accounting experience and expertise in tax, accounting, and advisory services for closely held businesses, nonprofit organizations, and high-net-worth individuals. She holds a bachelor of business administration degree and a master’s degree in accounting from the Isenberg School of Management at UMass Amherst. She is a member of the American Society of Certified Public Accountants and the Massachusetts Society of Certified Public Accountants.


Heather Dameworth

Heather Dameworth

Lora Thayer

Lora Thayer

bankESB recently announced that two of its employees have been promoted to officer. Heather Dameworth has been promoted to cash management and government banking administrator officer. Dameworth joined bankESB in 2021 as cash management – government banking administrator. She has more than 18 years of banking experience, including roles in accounting, call centers, and retail. She holds a bachelor’s degree in business management from UMass Amherst. Lora Thayer has been promoted to commercial loan administrator officer. Thayer joined bankESB in 2003 as a teller and was promoted to loan servicing specialist in 2006. She joined the commercial team as commercial loan administrator in 2017 and was promoted to senior commercial loan administrator in 2021. She is also a member of the Hometown Financial Group checking acquisition team.


Naomi Aina

Whittlesey, a leading public accounting firm, announced the promotion of Naomi Aina, CPA to Assurance manager. She brings a wealth of experience, knowledge, and commitment to providing exceptional service to clients. Aina has more than 20 years of experience in public accounting, with a practice concentration in nonprofits. She joined Whittlesey in 2014 after working at Lester Halpern & Company, P.C. for 14 years. She is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) and the Massachusetts Society of Certified Public Accountants (MSCPA). She earned her bachelor’s degree in accounting from American International College and a master’s degree in accounting from Western New England College.


Hogan Technology announced the addition of two new team members. Kyle Partridge, an experienced IT support technician and Air Force veteran, is working with the IT support team in service and projects. He has a great understanding of the network environment and is very familiar with the company’s tech stack. Corey Harris is now director of IT. His roles and responsibilities will be to guide Hogan’s growth and nurture its IT team as the company expands its marketplace. He has more than 15 years of experience and is skilled at simply explaining complex solutions.


David Gadouas

David Gadouas

bankESB recently announced that David Gadouas has been hired as assistant vice president and branch officer of the bank’s State Street, Belchertown office. Gadouas has more than 15 years of banking experience. Prior to joining bankESB, he was employed by Bank of America, where he served as vice president and financial center manager. He holds a bachelor’s degree in mathematics from Westfield State University.


The Greater Northampton Chamber of Commerce welcomed five new board members at its first meeting of 2023 last month. The new board members are Erin Cahillane, Jillian Duclos, Ebru Kardan, Nanci Newton, and Amanda Shafii. Cahillane is the Amherst Fund coordinator at Amherst College and president of the Northampton St. Patrick’s Assoc. She received a bachelor’s degree in communications from Keene State College and a master’s degree in communications and new media marketing from Southern New Hampshire University. Duclos is vice president of Operations for Roberto’s in Northampton. After earning a bachelor’s degree in politics at Mount Holyoke College, she explored many different paths, moving away to work in politics, then public relations, then for nonprofits. Kardan is senior director of Diversity Communications and Events at UMass Amherst. She holds a bachelor’s degree in philosophy and art history from Rutgers University. At UMass, she provides leadership and oversight for internal and external visibility efforts of the Office of Equity and Inclusion, and implements campus-wide campaigns that strategically advance the university’s strategic goals around diversity, equity, and inclusion. Newton is a licensed massage therapist and owner of the Healing ZONE Therapeutic Massage in Hadley. She studied at the Muscular Therapy Institute in Cambridge and holds a bachelor’s degree in music education from Westfield State College. A member of the chamber for more than 20 years, she is active in the local nonprofit community, volunteering for many events for Cancer Connection, Safe Passage, and others, in addition to her work with the chamber. Shafii is the owner of CopyCat in Northampton. She holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology/neuroscience from UMass Amherst, where she also minored in sociology.

Company Notebook

MSB Announces $15,000 in Donations in 2023 Community Giving Initiative

MONSON — The people have voted, and the results are in for the Monson Savings Bank (MSB) 2023 Community Giving Initiative. In late 2022, MSB asked its community members to cast a vote for their nonprofit organizations of choice, and nearly 6,000 votes were submitted. This was the 13th year of the Monson Savings Bank Community Giving Initiative, and the public’s excitement to cast their vote has grown throughout the years. In total, 400 organizations were nominated to receive a donation. Monson Savings Bank is donating a total of $15,000 among the top 10 vote recipients. Monetary donations are one of the many ways the local bank stays true to its longstanding mission of supporting local communities. The 2023 Monson Savings Bank Community Giving Initiative recipients are I Found Light Against All Odds, Shriner’s Hospital for Children, Alex Cotton Memorial Fund, and Women’s Empowerment Scholarship, Springfield; Wilbraham United Players, Wilbraham Friends of Recreation, Rick’s Place, and Scantic Valley YMCA, Wilbraham; Link to Libraries Inc., Hampden; and Monson Free Library, Monson.


Berkshire Bank Named Among Best Midsize Employers by Forbes

PITTSFIELD — Berkshire Bank was recognized on the Forbes magazine list of America’s Best Midsize Employers 2023. This award is presented by Forbes and Statista Inc., a statistics portal and industry-ranking provider. The awards list was announced on Feb. 15 and can be viewed at forbes.com. Berkshire Bank is the only Massachusetts-based bank, and one of four banks in New England and New York, on the midsized employer banking and financial services list. Forbes and Statista selected the America’s Best Employers 2023 through an independent survey applied to a sample of approximately 45,000 American employees working for companies with more than 1,000 employees in America. Across 25 industry sectors, 1,000 employers have been awarded: 500 large employers and 500 midsize employers. The evaluation was based on direct and indirect recommendations from employees that were asked to rate their willingness to recommend their own employers to friends and family. Employee evaluations also included other employers in their respective industries that stood out either positively or negatively.


Ocean State Job Lot Partners with Customers on Earthquake Relief

NORTH KINGSTOWN, R.I. — Ocean State Job Lot (OSJL), a leading discount closeout retailer headquartered in Rhode Island with stores throughout New England, New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania, recently donated and coordinated the shipment of essential supplies to help those impacted by the deadly earthquakes in Turkey and Syria. More than 40,000 people have been killed and tens of thousands injured. OSJL partnered with its customers to donate more than $1 million in supplies, sending more than 35 types of items, including tents, blankets, coats, sweaters, socks, and health and hygiene products such as sanitizers, soap, and alcohol wipes. The items were shipped to Syria and Turkey, leveraging OSJL’s broad transportation network. All of the donated supplies were purchased at cost, in part through donations made by customers at each OSJL store to the 501(c)(3) Ocean State Job Lot Charitable Foundation to support the relief efforts. Monetary donations are still being accepted in-store and online at www.oceanstatejoblot.com/crisis-and-natural-disaster-relief-program.


IThe following business incorporations were recorded in Hampden, Hampshire and Franklin counties and are the latest available. They are listed by community.


RDP Properties Inc., 5C Maple View Lane, Agawam, MA 01001. Tina M. Depalma, same. Real estate acquisition, management, and development.


Belchertown Stingrays Swim Team Boosters Inc., 66 State Street, Belchertown, MA 01007. Julie Lisek, same. Non-profit organization established to support the Belchertown Stingrays swim team and its coaches.


All About Tires Services Inc., 43 White Birch, Ave., Chicopee, MA 01020. Jorge Cividanes Cruz, same. To provide transportation and tire services to transportation companies.

Massachusetts Outlaws Corporation, 1 Griffith Road, Chicopee, M 01022. Benjamin Lee Ringman, same. Community-based baseball program for baseball players within the Chicopee, Mass. area and support the development of players across a wide range of participation levels.


Norwell Management Co. Inc., 200 North Main Street Suite, 204 East Longmeadow, MA 01028. Cynthia A. Redin, same. Management of limited liability company.


Calab Rare Books, Inc., 70 Dennis Road, Longmeadow, MA 01106. Adam Gorfin, same. Sales and purchase of rare books.


Eagle Owl Foundation Inc., 56 Olney Road, Palmer, MA 01069. Jeffery S. Bohnet, 16 King Street, Palmer, MA 01069. Non-profit organization established to rescue, save and rehabilitate all raptors as well as educate the community on raptor behavior.


Boston Jazz Foundation Inc., 82 Wendell Ave., Suite 100, Pittsfield, MA 01201. Sebastian Molnar, 34 Raymond St., Allston, MA 02134. Purposes of the corporation is to serve marginalized jazz artists and the greater Boston artist community by providing resources and opportunities through free educational workshops; scholarships to further their musical studies and careers; legal and financial council; and performance spaces.

Genius Development Workshop Inc., 82 Wendell Ave, Suite 100, Pittsfield, MA 01201. Biu Ma, same. Establishment of an education center.

The Rockett Foundation Inc., 82 Wendell Ave., Suite 100, Pittsfield, MA 01201. Charles Martin, 992 Madison St., Fall River, MA 02720. Provides scholarships and assistance to students pursuing higher education.


Binary Data Technology Corporation, 33 Gates Ave., Springfield, MA 01118. Joseph Hagan, same. Entertainment, media and IT related business.

JDN Express Inc., 26 Hunter Place, Springfield, MA 01109. John David Navarro Torres, same. Transportation services.

Zeal Youth Empowerment Center Inc., 30 Bowdoin St., Springfield, MA 01109. Eliezer Serrano, 20 Windemere Dr., Agawam, MA 01030. Youth program offering after school programs to service 100 youth in Springfield and surrounding regions by providing: health and wellness workshops, financial literacy workshops, mentoring opportunities, entrepreneurial and leadership development.


New England Farmhouse Furniture Inc., 1158 Piper Road, West Springfield, MA 01089. Heather Lapinski, 1158 Piper Road, West Springfield, MA 01013. Custom build and refurbish furniture for sale.


Quick Dumpsters Inc., 77 Mill St., Unit 16, Westfield, MA 01085. Joshua M. Kelsey, same. Dumpster rentals.

DBA Certificates

The following business certificates and/or trade names were issued or renewed during the months of January and February 2023. (Filings are limited due to closures or reduced staffing hours at municipal offices due to COVID-19 restrictions).


Greta’s Beauty Bar LLC
430 Main St., Unit 200
Greta D’Mours

The Home Owner’s Handyman
48 Hope Farms Dr., Feeding Hills
Patrick Devine

Jamie Beth Photography
168 Valley Brook Road, Feeding Hills
Erik Sudnick

Parrotta’s Cycle
357 Main St.
Bruno Parrotta

Phipp’s Discount Liquors
1350 Springfield St., Feeding Hills
Spero Phillips

674 Springfield St., Feeding Hills
Rachael Boido

Valenti Real Estate
7 Cooper St.
Joseph Valenti


Lazy Langz
96 North Pleasant St.
Joseph Dior

Legacy Title & Escrow
437 Main St.
Michael Gove

Professional Painting Plus
27 Bedford Court
Jose Martinez Velasco

Wanderlust Tattoo
71 North Pleasant St.
Stephen Lambert

155 Lincoln Ave.
Patrick Malone


RE/MAX Connections
1 Stadler St.
Peter Ruffini, Dawn Ruffini


FTF Construction
52 Ellabree St.
Raymond Lucia

JR’s Painting Plus
18 Mellen St.
Richard Knight III

Pro 2A Products
126½ Cochran St.
Darren Descoteaux

Salon on Britton
498 Britton St.
Jennifer Consedine

Star Dental
415 East St.
Carla Santiago

United Sons Auto Sales LLC
400D East Main St.
Talal Hamad

Wooden Rabbit Clean Services Corp.
43 Dickinson St.
Christopher Bendtson


422 North Main St.
Ming Chen

100 Shaker Road
Irina Kulenok

JMG Salon
225 Shaker Road
Jennifer Guinipero

Liz’s Hair Care
42 Harkness Ave.
Elizabeth Porter

Maple Dental Associates
79 Maple St.
Iqra Vohra

Michelle Murray LMHC
15 Benton Dr.
Michelle Murray

MVPT Physical Therapy
14 Center Square
Steven Windwer

Omega Cleaners
14 Harkness Ave.
Hanbyual Chang

Powerhouse Training
80 Denslow Road
Jonathan Davis

Sola Salon Studios
60 Shaker Road
Sharon Gates


Logic Impact Group
31 Palomba Dr., Unit 651
Michael Beaudry Sr.

Lorrie A. O’Brien MSW
10 Allen St.
Lorrie O’Brien

Starling Aesthetics
160 Hazard Ave.
Gary Golliher, Noah Starkey

Triple J Home Services
30 Meadowlark Road
Johanna Torres-Bonilla, Erasto Canals-Filpo


Warren & Sons
20 Lyn Dr.
Stewart Warren


Mac’s Garage
974 Main St.
John Missaggia

Mary Huggins Salon
2 Abbey Hill Dr.
Mary Huggins

McCormick Murtagh & Marcus
390 Main St., Suite 1
Kathleen McCormick

McFarland Soil & Water
156 Christian Hill Road
Scott McFarland

Michael Martin Builder
10 Laurel St.
Michael Martin

Miller’s Pub
280 Main St.
Christopher Brooks

47 Railroad St., Unit 1A
William Paul

740 Main St.
Richard Skeen

783 South Main St.
Community Growth Partners Great Barrington Operations LLC

Rising Well
7 Manville St.
Miral Kruh

Riverside Capital Management
390 Main St., Suite 1
David Strassier, Robert Strassier

The Salix Mountain Collective
72 Christian Hill Road
Scott Buquor

Sapere Aude Landscape Services
72 State Road
Milton Javier, Quizhpi Uzhca

SAVIA Leadership
7 Meadow Lane
Sabrina Jaffe

276 Main St.
Andrew Pruhenski, Abigail Webster

Stockbridge Motorcar Co. Inc.
691 Stockbridge Road
Matthew Sutton

Timber Craft Homes
247 Monument Valley Road
Mark Rosengren

Truhan Design
6 Hemlock Hill Road
Ardith Truhan

Wind in the Pines
949 Main St.
Robert Hatch

Yellow House Books
252 Main St.
Bonnie Benson, Ray Garrett


Kevin’s Auto Body & Sales
35 Montague City Road
Kevin LaBelle

Mike’s Fins
114 Adams Road
Michael Krawczyk

New Possibilities
31 Pond St.
Wyatt McDaniel

Peter Pan Music Shop
106 Federal St.
Peter Skolnick

Returning to Wholeness
63 French King Highway, Suite 9
Deborah Wilson

Salon 20
20 Church St.
Christine Roth

Serenity Senter
45 Bank Row
Laurie Dulude

Shir Glassworks
139 Conway St.
Madeline Shir, Ori Shir

Shree Brahmani Mataji Corp.
256 Federal St.
Priyankkymar Patel

Studio Seven
229 Main St.
Rachael Katz

Toes to Go
22 Abbott St.
Marilyn Erickson

Wild Edge Floral
211 Green River Road
Katherine Stafford

Yasov Electrdysis & Skin Care
224½ Federal St.
Sophia Koblinski


Nature’s Finest Creations
31 Huntington Road
Fredrick Wilda

Precciozzi Tailors
16 Meadowbrook Dr.
Aida Precciozzi-Chalfin

Taco Bell
348 Russell St.
GF Enterprise LLC


Red Leaf Investigations
34 Joanne Dr.
James Albert

Relco Compliance Services
51 North Canal St.
Margaret Morneau

RJ Café
341 High St.
Roberto Almonte

Stop and Go
399 Hillside Ave.
Rajendra Modie

TJ Maxx #1244
33 Holyoke St.
The TJX Companies


Maggi Marriage Ceremonies
58 Robin Road
Robert Maggi


Ludlow Eye Associates
200 Center St.
Katarzyna Babinki

Ludlow Family Dental
77 Winsor St., Suite 102
Binca Warren

Ludlow Smoke Shop & Convenience
246 East St.
Khaled Saleh

Luso Financial
187 East St.
Antonio Goncalves, Luis Dinis

Pioneer Valley PDR
7 Circuit Ave.
Stephen Nodurf

Purely Caribbean Sunless Tanning
271 East St.
Katie Schebel

Smooth Innovators
242 East St.
Richard Rodriguez

Sugar Nails & Spa
36 East St.
Danyun Huang, Yan Jinjin


RAD Goon Saloon
3 Green St.
Carrie LaVallie

RCK Consulting Service
137 Thayer Road
Ronald Klisiewicz

Seasons Pool and Patio Inc
450 Boston Road
Cheryl Lemelin Hickman, Daniel Lemelin


The Synthesis Project
495 Church St.
Tiffany Kuzia


Malon Construction
331 Highland Ave.
George Malon Jr.

Matt Cusson Music
11 Cherry Hill Dr.
Matthew Cusson

Muffy’s Management LLC
38 North St.
Cheryl Gajewski

Oral & Dental Implant Surgery
3 Dalton Ave.
Oral & Dental Implant Surgery

Panda Garden
724 Tyler St.
Chun Hui Lin

Phoenix Theatres Beacon Cinema
57 North St.
Phoenix Theatres Berkshires LLC

Powerback Consulting
1000 North St.
Genesis Eldercare Rehabilitation Services LLC

Powerback Rehabilitation
169 Valentine Road
Genesis Eldercare Rehabilitation Services LLC

Powerback Rehabilitation To You
1000 North St.
Genesis Eldercare Rehabilitation Services LLC

Powerback Rehabilitation To You
169 Valentine Road
Genesis Eldercare Rehabilitation Services LLC

Powerback Respiratory
1000 North St.
Respiratory Health Services LLC

Pro Facilities Maintenance Services
82 Wendell Ave., Suite 100
Pro Services Inc.

Pure Consulting LLC
814 East St.
Pure Enterprise LLC

Radiant Whitening & Jewelry
457 Dalton Ave.
Toni Satrape

State & Zodi
82 Wendell Ave.
Ltoya Leigh, LLC

44 Demont Ave.
Kristina Turner

Unistress Corp.
550 Cheshire Road
Elizabeth Kopec

Vallone’s Automotive
111 Francis Ave.
Frankie Vallone Jr.

Vestal Energy
727 East St.
Travis Orsi

Wake Up Works
158 Daniels Ave.
Maria Pinheiro


Dunkin’ Donuts
497 Newton St.
Lori Donuts

103 Alvord Place
David Henry

THI Meets
5 Carol Ann Dr.
Steven Thompson


Donna M. Houghton, LMT
405 North Loomis St.
Donna Houghton

Security Fence and Kennel Co.
15 Babb Road
Jason Labrecque


Patriot Firearms
317 Palmer Road
Heath Grimes


Memo’s Restaurant
1272 Memorial Ave.
Dominic Pompi

Odessa Auto Group
167 Norman St.
Igor Mazur

Once Upon a Child
1458 Riverdale St.
Lawrence White Jr.

1095 Westfield St.
Yousuf Jaafar

Pat’s Auto Service
163 Norman St.
Richard Parenteau

Pisst Fish Tattoo Co.
1270 Memorial Ave.
Kevin Ondras

Ray’s Liquidations
20 River St.
Ramon Sanchez

Sanders Family Rustic Wood Works
19 Cora St.
David Sanders

Sandy Stylist
242 Westfield St.
Sandra Pereira

Stella’s Bones Pet Sitting & Dog Walking
640 Elm St.
Lesley Maple

Total Women’s Health Care Inc.
46 Daggett Dr.
Aleli Villanueva

Twisted Emportium
117 Hampden St.
Eric Dumas

Welcome Inn
2041 Riverdale St.
Rajendrasinh Mahida


KB’s Landscaping
2 Kensington Dr.
Karl Brown


The following bankruptcy petitions were recently filed in U.S. Bankruptcy Court. Readers should confirm all information with the court.

Adams, Charles
5 Morin Dr.
Easthampton, MA 01027
Chapter: 13
Date: 01/20/2023

Cote Construction
Cote, Kenneth James
30 Wood Ave.
East Longmeadow, MA 01028
Chapter: 7
Date: 01/17/2023

Gauthier, Allen Conrad
108 Park St.
Athol, MA 01331
Chapter: 13
Date: 01/18/2023

Herbert, Justin M.
17 Gargon Ter.
Southwick, MA 01077
Chapter: 13
Date: 01/24/2023

Hook Ups Towing and Transport Inc.
Poniatowski, Peter S.
283 Paper Mill Road
Westfield, MA 01085
Chapter: 7
Date: 01/17/2023

Jamil, Mazhar
P.O. Box 81310
Springfield, MA 01138
Chapter: 7
Date: 01/24/2023

Kenney, James Francis
PO Box 1461
Belchertown, MA 01007
Chapter: 13
Date: 01/20/2023

London, Alexandra V.
160 Point Grove Road, Apt. 64
Southwick, MA 01077
Chapter: 7
Date: 01/24/2023

Martel, Kevin Edward
68 Church St., Apt 212
Ware, MA 01082
Chapter: 7
Date: 01/26/2023

Matthews, Thomas
26 Walnut St.
Gill, MA 01354
Chapter: 7
Date: 01/18/2023

Miranda-Berneche, Donna J.
P.O. Box 852
Southwick, MA 01077
Chapter: 7
Date: 01/26/2023

Ortiz, Taylor R.
a/k/a Yergeau, Taylor Rae
183 Gun Club Road
Westfield, MA 01085
Chapter: 7
Date: 01/17/2023

Rae, Samantha
106 Lyon St.
Ludlow, MA 01056
Chapter: 7
Date: 01/27/2023

Ruel, Mark J.
144 Corcoran Blvd.
Springfield, MA 01118
Chapter: 7
Date: 01/24/2023

Shafer, Pamela Michelle
6 Shaw Road
Wales, MA 01081
Chapter: 7
Date: 01/25/2023

Tolpa, Judith A.
2 First Ave.
Westfield, MA 01085
Chapter: 7
Date: 01/27/2023

Wells, Mary Ann M.
12 Royce Court, Apt. D4
West Springfield, MA 01089
Chapter: 7
Date: 01/23/2023

Building Permits

The following building permits were issued during the months of January and February 2023. (Filings are limited due to closures or reduced staffing hours at municipal offices due to COVID-19 restrictions).


Chicopee Provision Co. Inc.
19 Sitarz Ave.
$7,000 — Separation and demolition of attached garage structure from east side of building

Exchange Assets LLC
46 Cabot St.
$30,000 — Roofing


Tomlan Realty LLC
231 Russell St.
N/A — New sign face for existing structure

W/S Hadley Properties II LLC
355 Russell St., Suite 30
N/A — Install sign for AT&T at front of building


Ronald Halpin
645 Pleasant St.
$4,500 — Roofing

Ryel Holdings LLC
130 Housatonic St.
$10,000 — Build three half-bathrooms and one utility room


Brewha LLC
55 Pittsfield Road
$2,000 — Adjust wet chemical fire-suppression system in kitchen

PVI Lenox Village LLC
21 Housatonic St.
$728,500 — Rehab floor framing, add front patio, add sprinkler system, create addition to include kitchen, event space, bathrooms, and bar area


Emerald City Partners LLC
17 New South St., Unit 301
$18,800 — Wire new office partitions and replace lighting

259 Main St.
$1,995 — Renovate second-floor apartment

Northampton Holdings LP
173 North King St.
$2,870 — Illuminated wall sign for Dollar Tree

Northampton Holdings LP
173 North King St.
$1,946 — Illuminated wall sign for Dollar Tree

Northampton Holdings LP
173 North King St.
$1,946 — Illuminated wall sign for Dollar Tree

Northampton Holdings LP
173 North King St.
$1,930 — Illuminated ground sign refacing for Dollar Tree

Smith College
14 Green St.
$6,750 — Non-illuminated blade wall sign

Smith College
14 Green St.
$2,050 — Non-illuminated wall sign


Allendale Shopping LLC
3 Cheshire Road
$10,450 — Install detection and alarm system in kitchen and restaurant

Johnson Family Real Estate LLC
694 East St.
$158,800 — Roofing

Phoenix Property Management
676 Merrill Road
$106,200 — Four storage units

Pittsfield Pipers Inc.
73 Fourth St.
$18,000 — Roofing

110 Lincoln St.
$75,000 — Demolish building


90 Tapley LLC
90 Tapley St.
$170,000 — Alter interior showroom, offices, restrooms, break room, and corridor at L&W Supply

Cataldo Ambulance Service
58 Winthrop St.
$50,000 — Remodel interior space to include new bathroom and new office

Mittas Hospitality LLC, DD Development LLC, Rudra Realty LLC
2 Boland Way
$6,000 — Repair wall damaged by car impact in Tower Square parking garage

Presbytery of Southern New England Inc.
14 Concord Terrace
$1,500,000 — Repair fire-damaged MLK Jr. Community Presbyterian Church

Springfield Gardens LP
15 Salem St.
$5,000 — Replace fire alarm