Events Features

40 Under Forty 2014 Gala

The Class of 2014 Has Its Day in the Sun

DSC_0674The population of 40 Under Forty winners in Western Mass. officially reached 320 on June 19, as BusinessWest’s Class of 2014 received their plaques — and the applause of more than 600 people — at ceremonies at the Log Cabin Banquet & Meeting House in Holyoke. Perfect weather greeted guests on the penultimate day of spring, and they enjoyed one of the best networking events of the year. The gala featured fine food, music — each winner was introduced to a song of their choosing — and a chance to meet this program’s eighth class of rising stars, as well as many previous winners. On the pages that follow, we offer a fun look back at a memorable evening. Meanwhile, we’ll remind you that the nomination process for the Class of 2015 begins in roughly six months. So it’s time to start thinking about who could be the next members of this prestigious club. This year’s gala was sponsored by Baystate Medical Center, Fathers & Sons, Hampden Bank, Health New England, the Isenberg School of Management at UMass Amherst, Moriarty & Primack, P.C., Paragus Strategic IT, St. Germain Investment Management, and the Young Professional Society of Greater Springfield.

Program Sponsors:


For reprints contact: Denise Smith Photography / / [email protected]

From left, Jennifer Stratton, assistant professor of Education at Springfield College; Seth Stratton, class of 2014, attorney with Fitzgerald Attorneys at Law; Kathleen Schneider, senior director of Budget and Award Management for Save the Children; Michael Schneider, class of 2014, associate attorney at Doherty, Wallace, Pillsbury & Murphy, P.C.; Kevin Maltby, class of 2014, attorney at Bacon Wilson, P.C.; and his wife, Eliza Maltby.

DSC_0586Mike Matty, president of St. Germain Investment Management, one of this year’s 40 Under Forty sponsors, congratulates Patricia Faginski, vice president and financial advisor for the company and member of the class of 2014.

Below, from left, Melinda Moreno, adjunct professor at Bay Path College, networks with Tamara Blake, class of 2014, director of Psychology at Bay Path College and president and founder of Angels Take Flight; Lee Hagon, class of 2014, vocal music director at Minnechaug Regional High School; York Mayo, CEO of Community Volunteers; Angela Lussier, class of 2014, CEO of Anglea Lussier Enterprises; and Nick Rattner, editor at the Ugly Duckling Presse.



Jeremy Casey, class of 2013, assistant vice president and Commercial Services officer at Westfield Bank, networks with Garett DiStefano, class of 2014, director of residential dining at UMass Amherst.
From left, Terra Missildine, co-owner and operations manager at Beloved Earth Environmentally Friendly Custodial Services; Kyle Sullivan, class of 2014, business insurance broker at the John M. Glover Agency; Ashley Clark, assistant store manager, officer at TD Bank; Alfonso Santaniello, class of 2014, president and CEO of the Creative Strategy Agency; Juli Thibault, Manager of Talent Acquistion at Baystate Health; and Jesse Tolan, digital media coordinator at the Creative Strategy Agency.

DSC_0621Jill Monson, left, class of 2010, chief inspiration officer at Inspired Marketing, networks with Rich Griffin, project manager for the City of Springfield, and his wife, Nicole Griffin, class of 2014, president and CEO of Griffin Staffing Network.

Representing Health New England, one of the program’s sponsors, are, from left, Robert Azeez, Medicaid behavioral health manager; Taylor Moore, credit and collections analyst; Kerri Kane, process improvement facilitator; and Yvonne Diaz, account executive for existing business.

DSC_0614Anthony Surrette, class of 2014, principal at Corbin & Tapases, P.C., stops for a picture with his proud mother, Theresa Surrette.


From left, Sandy Cassanelli, class of 2014, CEO of Greenough Packaging, and her husband, Craig Cassanelli, president of Greenough Packaging, stop for a picture with Michael Schneider, class of 2014, associate attorney at Doherty, Wallace, Pillsbury & Murphy, P.C., and his wife, Kathleen Schneider, senior director of budget and award management for Save the Children.


Representing Hampden Bank, an event sponsor, are, from left, Amy Scribner, vice president and director of marketing; Kristy Batchelor, branch manager at the Tower Square location; and Peg Daoust, branch manager at the Boston Road location.

Representing the UMass Isenberg School of Management, an event sponsor, are Kyle Bate, left, academic advisor and director of regional program development, and Katherine Piedra, director of the full-time MBA program.

DSC_0637Steve Oparowski, art director at Darby O’Brien Advertising, represents event sponsor Paragus Strategic IT near the main hallway, handing out martini glasses to the guests.


From left, Mark Wisnewski, Greenfield town councilor, and his wife, Francia Wisnewski, class of 2014, regional program manager at Raising a Reader Massachusetts, network with Denise Hurst, class of 2014, quality improvement manager and human rights coordinator at the Department of Mental Health, and her husband, Justin Hurst, also a member of the class of 2014, owner of Hurst & Crane Investments, and a Springfield city councilor.

Rich Griffin, left, project manager for the city of Springfield, stops for a photo with Jose Delgado, class of 2014, mayoral aide for the city of Springfield, and Danielle Emery, a second-grade teacher at Kensington Elementary School.

Representing Monson Savings Bank are, from left, Jaimye Hebert, class of 2011, vice president of Commercial Lending; Melanie Garcia, teller; Robert Chateauneuf, class of 2014, assistant vice president of Commercial Lending; his wife, Shauna Chateauneuf, case manager at MassMutual Financial Group; and Sara Rodrigues, teller.

From left, Seth Stratton, class of 2014, attorney at Fitzgerald Attorneys at Law; Jennifer Stratton, assistant professor of Education at Springfield College; and Seth’s mother, Mary Stratton, talk with Patrick Leary, class of 2007, shareholder and vice president of Moriarty and Primack, P.C., an event sponsor.

Jason Randall, class of 2014, director of Human Resources for Peter Pan Bus Lines, networks with Pam Thornton, center, business development manager for United Personnel, and Cindy Landry, human resources generalist at Health New England.

From left, Waleska Lugo-DeJesus, class of 2012, director of Multicultural Affairs at Westfield State University, networks with Ed Nunéz, senior business development officer at Freedom Credit Union and treasurer of the Young Professional Society of Greater Springfield, an event sponsor; Michelle Crosby, branch manager at PeoplesBank; Jason Tsitso, class of 2012, project manager at R&R Windows; and Sarah Tsitso, class of 2007, executive director of the Springfield Boys & Girls Club.

Representing Fathers & Sons, an event sponsor, are, from left, Tony Quiterio, manager; Shera Smith, sales; Steve Langieri, sales manager; Bill Visneau, product specialist; Damon Cartelli, class of 2010, general manager; and Stephen Parent, sales director.

Representing event sponsor Baystate Medical Center are, from left, Sean Gouvin, class of 2014, director of Facilities Planning and Engineering; Ryan Thomas, performance improvement coordinator; and Kevin Kirrane, process improvement coordinator.

Ryan McCollum, left, owner of RMC Strategies, shares a moment with Erin Brunelle, class of 2013, realtor at Century 21 Hometown Associates, and Holyoke Mayor Alex Morse, class of 2014.


Jim Barrett, managing partner of Meyers Brother Kalicka, P.C., one of five judges chosen to review this year’s 40 Under Forty nominations, receives a gift basket on stage. Each of the judges was given a basket in gratitude for their hard work.

SelfieGOBAlfonso Santaniello, class of 2014, president and CEO of the Creative Strategy Agency, surprises George O’Brien, BusinessWest editor, with a quick selfie as he accepts his award on stage at the Log Cabin.

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