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MGM Springfield Opening Delayed by One Year

BOSTON — The Massachusetts Gaming Commission, receptive to arguments regarding the impact of a major highway reconstruction on I-91, agreed to allow MGM Springfield to push the opening of its $800 million resort casino to September 2018. It was originally expected to open in the fall of 2017. MGM Springfield officials said the state’s reconstruction of the I-91 viaduct through downtown Springfield — a project expected to begin this year and end by August 2018, although financial incentives to finish by 2017 are in play — must be complete before MGM Springfield can open. The highway project includes ramp closures next to the casino site, and severe traffic congestion would keep visitors away and inconvenience those who do show up, said MGM officials, who still need the city’s approval to push back the opening date.

Business Confidence Up in Massachusetts in July

BOSTON — The Associated Industries of Massachusetts (AIM) Business Confidence Index added 2.9 points in July to 59.2, ending a string of three consecutive monthly losses. “Bouncing back from its dip in the second quarter, confidence among Massachusetts employers is fairly strong,” said Raymond Torto, Chair of AIM’s Board of Economic Advisors (BEA) and lecturer at Harvard Graduate School of Design. “The AIM Index is up three points from last July and, apart from its recent crest in February and March, is at its highest level since December 2006.” Torto noted that the Index’s recent performance extends a pattern that has prevailed for much of the post-Great Recession period. “Like the economy itself, the Index has followed a long-term trend of improvement, but the upward course has been longer and bumpier than most past recoveries.” AIM’s Business Confidence Index has been issued monthly since July 1991 under the oversight of the Board of Economic Advisors. Presented on a 100-point scale on which 50 is neutral, the Index attained a historical high of 68.5 in 1997 and 1998; its all-time low was 33.3 in February 2009. The sub-indices based on selected questions or respondent characteristics all rose from June to July, and most were up from a year before. The U.S. Index assessing national business conditions gained 2.5 points to 50.1, and Massachusetts Index of conditions within the Commonwealth rose six-tenths to 57.5. “The domestic economy, after a weak first quarter, is experiencing solid expansion, and Massachusetts continues to perform well in the national context,” said BEA member Sara Johnson, senior research director of Global Economics at IHS Global Insight. “Growth in international trade, however, has been disappointing, as improving conditions in Europe have been more than offset by the slowdown in Asia.” The Current Index, tracking employers’ assessment of existing business conditions, was up 3.5 to 59.7, while the Future Index, measuring expectations for the next six months, added 2.2 to 58.6. “The rating of current conditions is the best we have seen since the same reading in October 2006,” Johnson said. “The slightly lower future expectations probably reflect the Federal Reserve Board’s expressed intent to raise interest rates.” The three sub-indices related to survey respondents’ own companies were all well ahead in July. The Company Index, which assesses the overall situations of their operations, was up 3.7 points to 61.7; the Sales Index rose 5.3 to 63.2; and the Employment Index added 2.5 to 57.2. “The Company and Sales indicators are at their highest levels since 2006, and the Employment Index is also in its pre-recession range,” noted Elliot Winer, chief economist at Northeast Economic Analysis Group LLC, a BEA member. “These results are consistent with survey respondents’ favorable appraisal of prevailing business conditions and with recent state employment reports.” In July, confidence remained higher among employers within Greater Boston (61.3, up 3.9) than among those outside the metropolitan area (55.8, up 1.1). Manufacturers continued to be less confident (55.7, up 3.1) than other employers (62.9, up 2.9). “Massachusetts manufacturers, many of them in the central and western parts of the state, are seeing exports suffer because of the strong dollar and difficult conditions in key markets,” Winer said. “The indicators from the manufacturing sector and for the state outside Greater Boston are the only sub-indices that have lost ground, though less than a point each, over the past year.” There was little variation in confidence between small, medium-size, and larger employers.

Report: America’s Economy in Good, but Not Great, Shape

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. economy added 215,000 jobs in July after economists surveyed by CNNMoney predicted the economy would add 216,000 jobs. Anything above 200,000 is considered very solid. The unemployment rate stayed the same at 5.3%, which is its lowest point since April 2008. Wage growth — the missing piece to America’s economic progress — remained sluggish in July, the report notes. Average hourly earnings only rose 2.1% compared to the prior year. Wage growth is the reason many Americans haven’t felt the benefits of the economy’s recovery. The Federal Reserve wants to see annual wage growth closer to 3.5%. The jobs report is especially important now because the Fed is close to raising its key interest rate for the first time in over nine years. The Fed has said it will hike rates only if it believes the economy is healthy enough, especially for workers. A rate increase would be a good sign for how far the economy’s health has come since the recession ended. Although the Fed wants to see better wage growth before raising rates, wage growth isn’t a requirement. The Fed raised its key interest rate in June 2004 when average weekly earnings were 1.7% compared to the prior year. Average weekly earnings in July were 2.4%. Economic growth has been solid this year, though weaker than in 2014. Last year, the economy added 240,000 jobs a month on average between January and July. This year, that figure is 178,000. However, CNNMoney reports, many experts believe the current jobs report is strong enough to justify the Fed’s first rate hike taking place in September.

Volunteers Needed for Source to Sea River Cleanup This Fall

GREENFIELD — The Connecticut River Watershed Council’s (CRWC) 19th annual Source to Sea Cleanup will be held Friday and Saturday, Sept. 25 and 26. The annual, two-day event is coordinated by CRWC in all four states of the 410-mile Connecticut River basin. Each fall, thousands of volunteers of all ages and abilities head out to clean the Connecticut River and its tributaries on foot or by boat. Volunteers remove trash along rivers, streams, parks, boat launches, trails, and more. “Source to Sea Cleanup volunteers have worked hard to combat litter and illegally dumped trash,” said Alicea Charamut, CRWC river steward and organizer of the cleanup. “Their hard work and dedication is impressive and inspiring.” In 2014, more than 2,000 volunteers hauled over 47 tons of trash from riverbanks and waterways in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Vermont, and Connecticut. Volunteers use human power and sometimes heavy equipment to pull out everything from recyclables, fishing equipment, and food waste to tires, televisions, refrigerators, and junk cars. To date, volunteers have prevented more than 897 tons of trash from polluting area rivers. There are three ways to get involved in the cleanup: report a trash site in need of cleaning, find a cleanup group near you to join, or organize and register your own local cleanup group. For more information or to register for the event, visit www.ctriver.org/cleanup. “If your group wants to get involved but needs a cleanup site, contact us to learn about reported trash sites that may be near you,” said Charamut. Anyone with questions or trash tips can contact Charamut at [email protected] or (860) 704-0057. “Generous financial support from lead sponsors — NRG’s Middletown Generating Station, Pratt & Whitney, and TransCanada — enables us to organize the thousands of volunteers who participate in the cleanup, and to take on complex projects that require the use of heavy equipment, scuba divers, and other professionals to get those really trashed places cleaned up,” said CRWC Executive Director Andrew Fisk. CRWC plans to continue efforts on cleaning up the tire dump along the Deerfield River in Greenfield, as well as removing an abandoned exposed pipe in the Connecticut River in Holyoke and a number of fuel tanks in various rivers in New Hampshire and Vermont. The Connecticut River Watershed Council works to protect the watershed from source to sea. To learn more about CRWC, or to join the effort and help protect local rivers, visit www.ctriver.org.

Springfield Seeks Developer for Former Chestnut Junior High Site

SPRINGFIELD — The city of Springfield is releasing a request for proposals (RFP) for the eight parcels of land that formerly comprised the home of the Chestnut Junior High School at 495 Chestnut St. The school building was destroyed in a fire in September 2013, and the site has since been fully cleared. “With $2.8 billion in ongoing economic development in the city of Springfield, now is not the time to rest,” said Mayor Domenic Sarno. We are looking to capitalize on our momentum and bring new jobs and development to the city.” The RFP became available yesterday. Interested parties must return their proposal to the city by Monday, Sept. 14. The site is a total of 166,617 square feet, or 3.825 acres. The lump assessed value for all eight parcels is $127,900. The property was cleared by Associated Building Wreckers of Springfield, which removed all building elements, including foundations. “While the fire resulted in a great loss of the historic school, the site is now fully cleared and available for development,” said Springfield’s Chief Development Officer Kevin Kennedy. “To find a nearly four-acre site so close to major employers is rare. We expect strong interest in this property.” The neighborhood is home to Baystate Health, Mercy Medical Center, and Shriners Hospital for Children, as well as numerous private medical office buildings. Among many potential uses, the site could be appropriate for additional office development, retail development, or workforce housing targeting employees in the so-called ‘medical district.’ Proposers will be expected to address any zoning needs as well as work closely with the neighborhood to ensure a positive redevelopment of the site. The city recently commissioned an economic analysis of the medical district to examine its employee base of more than 10,000 people to better understand the opportunities that exist for new housing, retail, and commercial space that would not only serve the neighborhood but also these employees. The report can be found on the city’s Planning and Economic Development website at www.springfieldcityhall.com. Parties interested in obtaining the RFP should call the Office of Procurement at (413) 787-6284.

Company Notebook Departments

Paragus IT Acquires Applied Software Technologies

HADLEY — Paragus IT has continued its pattern of active growth with its first acquisition: West Springfield-based Applied Software Technologies. Prior to the acquisition, AST provided IT services to businesses in the region and beyond for more than 20 years. “We are very happy to welcome the staff and clients of Applied Software Technologies into the Paragus family,” said Paragus CEO Delcie Bean. “They are a great company, and we’re excited that we will be able to give their clients the opportunity to maintain their relationships with the people they know while also having access to the resources we are able to offer as the largest IT provider in Western Massachusetts.” The acquisition of AST is the latest in a strong trend of growth for Paragus. Since Bean founded the company at age 13, Paragus has grown from a one-man operation to a regional leader in business computer service, consulting, and information-technology support. Inc. Magazine has ranked Paragus as one of the fastest-growing privately held companies in the U.S. for four years running. With a 650% growth rate over seven years, Paragus is the second-fastest-growing outsourced IT firm in New England. “We have every intention of acquiring more businesses as we continue to expand our market and services, but it has to be the right deal,” Bean noted. “What matters to us is that the customers, both our current ones and the ones being acquired, are always benefited by the transaction. We refuse to compromise on quality and service. Second-best just isn’t good enough.”

Dave’s Soda and Pet City Highlighted by National Retail Federation

AGAWAM — The National Retail Federation’s ‘Retail Across America’ team recently stopped by Dave’s Soda and Pet City in Agawam to film for NRF’s Retail Across America campaign. They talked with Dave Ratner, who has been involved with the organization for many years, about his work advocating for Massachusetts retail stores on Capitol Hill. According to the NRF, Bay State retailers support 920,000 jobs, and retail contributes nearly $58 billion to the state’s economy. A film crew spoke with Dave’s employees about their jobs — their favorite part of their job, what their typical day involves, etc. The footage will be used to put together a glimpse into surprising jobs in retail. Retail Across America is part of the NRF’s award-winning “This is Retail” campaign, which brings together retailers, universities, and students with state retail associates, legislators, and opinion leaders. The NRF launched the program to highlight life-long careers, how retailers strengthen communities, and the critical role that retail plays in driving innovation. Dave’s Soda and Pet City is one of two businesses chosen to represent Western Mass. retailers on NRF’s road trip through four New England states. Dave’s Soda and Pet City is a mini-chain of seven superstores with more than 100 employees.

TommyCar Auto Group Donates Used Vehicle for Fire-rescue Training

NORTHAMPTON — Country Hyundai and Northampton Volkswagen recently provided a used vehicle to the Northampton Fire Department for rescue training. Firefighters spend countless hours training and honing their skills to ensure they are prepared for any emergency. The vehicle will be put to work in upcoming training exercises in which firefighters will utilize their extrication equipment on the vehicles, also known as the Hurst Tool or the Jaws of Life. “Ensuring firefighters have the latest training is critical to the safety of this community,” said Carla Cosenzi, president of Country Hyundai and Northampton Volkswagen, two dealerships in the TommyCar Auto Group chain. “We’re proud to be able to help in such a meaningful way, knowing so many people will ultimately benefit.” Added Bill Schuetze, captain and training officer for the Northampton Fire Department, “we really want to thank Country Hyundai and Northampton Volkswagen for the generous contribution. We will get a lot of use out of this car to train our firefighters on rescue efforts.” Country Hyundai and Northampton Volkswagen hope to have an ongoing relationship with the Northampton Fire Department and be able to offer more vehicles in the future.

Monson Savings Bank Announces New ‘Back to Banking’ Program

MONSON — As part of its ongoing efforts to improve financial literacy and capability, Monson Savings Bank (MSB) has introduced Fresh Start Checking accounts. These accounts are designed for people who might not otherwise be able to open a bank account based on their prior banking history. At the same time, MSB understands that life happens, and there are times when maintaining financial soundness may be difficult. Through the use of the Fresh Start Checking account, the “Back to Banking” program is designed to educate customers on money management, how to maintain accounts in good standing, and work toward paying off any unpaid account balances at other banks. As part of the program, free education materials are provided to customers through the National Endowment for Financial Education. The education modules include “Money Management — Control your Cash Flow,” “Borrowing — Use, Don’t Abuse,” “Earning Power — More Than a Paycheck,” Investing — Money Working for You,” “Financial Services — Care for Your Cash,” and “Insurance — Protect What You Have.” Another benefit of this program is a pay-as-you-bank option, which is designed to help customers pay down prior financial debts. With a companion savings account, funds can be set up to automatically transfer from checking to savings on a weekly, biweekly, or monthly basis. According to President and CEO Steve Lowell, “at Monson Savings Bank, we have become increasingly concerned about financial literacy and the fact that many people lack the money-management knowledge and skills they need to ensure long-term stability for themselves. Our new “Back to Banking” program is another way in which we help individuals within our communities become more financially secure.”

GZA GeoEnvironmental Awards Grant to Gardening the Community

SPRINGFIELD — GZA GeoEnvironmental Inc., a leading environmental and geotechnical engineering consulting firm, has awarded a $2,500 Shareholder’s Grant to Gardening the Community (GTC) in Springfield, based on an application from Anja Ryan Duffy, a professional landscape architect in the Springfield office of GZA. GZA bestows four roughly $2,500 grants each year to organizations whose specific programs would best benefit from the award. The Shareholder’s Grant program was established to support employee volunteerism and charity work in the firm’s communities and throughout the world. Duffy proposed Gardening the Community as a recipient of the GZA Shareholder’s Grant to assist in the development of the organization’s new Walnut Street site, a project for which she has volunteered her landscape-architecture services. Gardening the Community is a food-justice organization engaged in youth development, urban agriculture, and sustainable living to build healthy and equitable communities. In her grant application, Duffy said the Walnut Street project location is a 0.6-acre abandoned lot which “for decades has been an eyesore and served as an illegal dumping ground.” GTC purchased the site in July 2014 with the vision of transforming it into a “vibrant, green space which would also help feed the neighborhood and provide service and leadership opportunities for local youth.” The GZA Shareholder’s Grant will help fund the placement of fencing and perimeter plantings along the Walnut Street site. Duffy has been with GZA for nearly eight years. Her areas of specialization include site design, planting design, low-impact development, and graphics. A graduate of UMass Amherst with a bachelor’s degree in landscape architecture, she is an avid gardener and started a community garden in her former apartment complex.

Kingdom Master Jewelers Opens in Holyoke

HOLYOKE — Kingdom Master Jewelers, is a family-run business operated by Gabriel Serrano and Idoel Ortiz Jr., opened its doors today at 2020 Northampton St. in Holyoke. Previously a Hadley-based business since 2012, Serrano and Ortiz have become specialists in buying precious metals such as gold, diamonds, and silver, and have more tham 25 years of experience in custom-making one-of-a-kind pieces of jewelry. Kingdom Master Jewelers formally ran jewelry gallery repair shops for Kay, Hannoush, Jared, and many other jewelers in the area.

Departments People on the Move

Douglas Bowen

Douglas Bowen

Thomas Senecal

Thomas Senecal

The PeoplesBank board of directors announced that bank President and CEO Douglas Bowen will retire in July 2016, to be succeeded by Thomas Senecal, currently Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer. The board’s leadership-succession plan calls for Senecal to become president at the bank’s annual meeting in February 2016. Bowen will become chairman and CEO at that time. Senecal will be named president and CEO in July 2016 upon Bowen’s retirement. During this transition period, Bowen will remain active in his position and the bank’s management and strategy implementation. Bowen joined PeoplesBank in August 1975 as a teller in the management-development program. He has since worked in almost every department at the bank. In 1986, he started the Commercial Lending department and, in 2002, was named executive vice president and chief lending officer. He was named president and CEO in 2007 and, since that time, has led the bank to its current position in the market, with more than $2 billion in assets and a substantial track record of innovation, community support, environmental sustainability, and employee engagement. Under Bowen’s tenure, PeoplesBank opened six branches, three of which are LEED-certified; has financed more than $80 million in sustainable-energy projects; and has been named a “Top Place to Work” by the Boston Globe three years in a row. The bank was also named a “Top Charitable Contributor” by the Boston Business Journal seven years in a row. The American Bankers Assoc. gave PeoplesBank a Community Commitment Award for its environmental-sustainability efforts in 2013. The Boston Globe also named Bowen a “Globe 100 Innovator” in 2011. In 2009, BusinessWest named Bowen one of its first Difference Makers. Meanwhile, Senecal possesses more than 25 years of progressive financial experience. In his current position, he has managed all accounting, financial reporting, and treasury and facility operations. He has overseen asset growth of the bank from $460 million to $2 billion in 2015. In addition to Senecal’s responsibility for the Finance department, as the COO, he will oversee the Retail, Operations, Internal Control, and Risk Oversight functions. Early next year, he will also be responsible for the Commercial and Consumer Lending, Cash Management, and Human Resources functions. Senecal holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from UMass Amherst. He also attended the Tuck Executive Program at Dartmouth College. He is a certified public accountant and a U.S. Coast Guard veteran. He currently serves on the boards of directors of Holyoke Community College, where he is chair of the investment committee; Loomis Communities Inc.; and the Hampshire Regional Chamber of Commerce. He also serves on the advisory council of the Isenberg School of Management at UMass Amherst, and is a member of the Federal Home Loan Bank – Boston advisory panel. “Under his leadership, I am confident that our customers, our staff, and our future are in very capable hands,” said Bowen, making a statement on behalf of the bank’s board of directors. “Tom and I believe in our bank’s mutual charter. We will remain a mutual bank going forward — committed to helping our customers achieve financial success and to serving the community. It is our mutual charter that powers our values. It is also the structure that allows us to invest in innovation, to contribute to nonprofit and civic causes, to support environmental sustainability, and, perhaps most important of all, to help our associates grow and succeed. Our mutual charter has served us well for 130 years, and it is the key to our future as well.”

Carla DiLoreto

Carla DiLoreto

Greg Musante

Greg Musante

Christopher Fager

Christopher Fager

Sean Millane

Sean Millane

Jeffrey Lomma

Jeffrey Lomma

James Hagan, president and CEO of Westfield Bank, announced several recent changes to the bank’s retail and commercial banking staffs:
• Carla DiLoreto has joined the bank as Manager of the Enfield, Conn. office. DiLoreto has nearly 10 years of retail banking experience. Prior to joining Westfield Bank, she was Banking Center manager of the Somers, Conn. office of Webster Bank. While serving there, she was inducted in the Somers Women’s Club, where she helped raise money for its scholarship and charitable-giving programs;
• Greg Musante has been hired as Assistant Branch Manager and Business Specialist in the Holyoke office. Musante has 15 years of banking experience in commercial and mortgage lending. Most recently, he was mortgage bank officer at Webster Bank and also held the positions of cash management analyst and business specialist at Bank of America. A graduate of Greenfield Community College and Plymouth State College, he is an active member of several area chambers of commerce;
• Christopher Fager has joined the bank as Assistant Vice President, Commercial Loan Officer. Fager joins Westfield Bank following a successful six-year career at Citizens Bank, where he served as both branch manager and business banking officer. In his new role, he will be responsible for developing and managing commercial banking relationships. A graduate of UMass Dartmouth, he is active in local chambers of commerce;
• Sean Millane, previously Manager of the bank’s Enfield office, has been promoted to Commercial Loan Officer. Millane has 15 years of banking experience and joined Westfield Bank in 2014 as manager of the Enfield branch. Previously, he was branch manager and business development officer of the Ellington and East Windsor, Conn. offices of Rockville/United Bank. In addition to his professional accomplishments, he is president of the East Windsor (Conn.) Chamber of Commerce and treasurer of the North Central Connecticut PTSD Foundation; and
• Jeffrey Lomma, previously Assistant Manager and Business Specialist in the Enfield office, has been promoted to Branch Manager of the Tower Square office in Springfield. Lomma joined Westfield Bank in 2007. Prior to being named branch manager of the Tower Square office, he served as assistant manager and business specialist at the bank’s Enfield branch. A graduate of Western New England University, he is active in the community, serving as treasurer of the North Central Connecticut Chamber of Commerce and board member for both the Springfield Performing Arts Development Corp. (Symphony Hall and CityStage) and the Springfield Hockey Heritage Society.
“I am pleased to announce these exciting changes to our retail and commercial banking staffs,” Hagan said. “At Westfield Bank, we are committed to delivering the best possible banking experience for our retail and commercial customers in Western Massachusetts and Northern Connecticut. In addition to their proven accomplishments, Carla, Greg, Chris, Sean, and Jeff truly epitomize what better banking’s all about.”
Square One recently announced the addition of two senior-level individuals to its leadership team:
Kristine Allard

Kristine Allard

• Joining the organization as Vice President of Development is Kristine Allard. She will oversee the nearly $10 million organization’s fund raising, communications, and program development. She comes to Square One from the YMCA of Greater Springfield, where she led the fund-development and communications team, as well as family-center operations. In addition to fund raising, grant writing, and special-event planning, she has an extensive background in marketing and media relations. Allard is active on a number of community boards and committees, including Leadership Pioneer Valley and the Baystate Academy Charter School. “We are very pleased to welcome Kris to Square One,” said Joan Kagan, president and CEO. “She brings a wealth of knowledge, experience, and talent to our organization. Her enthusiasm, positive energy, and team spirit are contagious, making her a great addition to our team. Kris is a true asset to Square One, and we are fortunate that she has joined us.”
Frank Tate III

Frank Tate III

• Also joining the Square One team is Frank Tate III. As Food Service Director, Tate will develop menus and oversee daily food preparation for the organization’s 400 preschool and after-school program participants, assuring compliance with government regulations and Square One’s commitment to encouraging a healthy lifestyle. Tate comes to Square One following senior-level positions at YSET Academy in Springfield and the Early Childhood Centers of Greater Springfield. “We know that proper nutrition is a critical part of every child’s ability to succeed academically, physically, emotionally, and socially,” said Kagan. “Frank’s extensive experience and expertise make him a perfect fit to help fulfill our mission. Not only does he bring knowledge, creativity, and a diversity of nutritious food to our kitchen, but also a cheerful disposition that our staff and families have come to embrace.”
Moriarty & Primack, P.C. announced several promotions and additions to the firm. The new hires include Dahimeli Mercado, Associate; Jonathan Normand, Associate; and Laurie Bonano, Associate. Meanwhile, Timothy Provost has been promoted to Manager, and Daniel Duncan has been promoted to Senior Associate.
Springfield Falcons President Sarah Pompea recently announced five front-office staff promotions:
• Chris Thompson has been promoted to Senior Vice President. Thompson will continue to oversee the team’s corporate sales with an expanded focus on driving ticket sales. In his new role, he will be working closely with Pompea in the day-to-day operations of the organization;
• Cortney Hersom has been promoted to Vice President. Hersom is currently responsible for all Falcons financials and human resources. In addition, she will take a stronger lead in the daily operations of the office;
• Andy Zilch has been promoted to Manager of Communications/Broadcasting. Zilch, the Falcons’ play-by-play broadcaster, also has responsibilities in ticket and corporate sales. He will oversee the team’s communications and community-relations efforts and act as the primary media contact for the Falcons;
• Marija Ward has been promoted to Manager of Ticket Operations. Ward oversees all aspects of the organization’s ticket operations and serves as the box-office liaison. She has been tasked with streamlining the ticket department, increasing efficiency, and enhancing the fan experience; and
• Luke Pawlak has been promoted to Manager of Game Operations/Creative Services. Pawlak spearheads all creative aspects for the organization and will also be able to utilize new technology this season to enhance the fan experience. He has cultivated a positive leadership role with the team’s game-night staff.
Erika Kaftan

Erika Kaftan

Erika Kaftan has been appointed assistant Director of Educational Services at the Willie Ross School for the Deaf. She succeeds Linda Carfora, who is retiring after more than 20 years at Willie Ross. Kaftan will oversee the Mass. Comprehensive Assessment System Alternate Assessment (MCAS-Alt) portfolios and the School-to- Work program. She also will assist in supervising and evaluating staff, hiring new staff, and reviewing and approving quarterly progress reports. Prior to joining Willie Ross last month, Kaftan was the individualized education plan (IEP) coordinator at the EDCO Program for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing in Newton. She also worked as a teacher for the deaf at the high-school level at EDCO. Kaftan began her career as a paraprofessional and substitute teacher for elementary-school students at a charter school in California. She received her bachelor’s degree in liberal arts from California State University, Northridge, with a focus in American Sign Language, and went on to earn two master of education degrees, from Boston University in deaf education and from Endicott College in organizational management. The Willie Ross School for the Deaf provides a comprehensive educational program stressing academic excellence that focuses on the development of students’ intellectual, social, and emotional growth from the early childhood level through high school. Willie Ross serves students at its main campus in Longmeadow and at its partnership campus located in the East Longmeadow public schools. Mainstreaming opportunities are provided at the partnership campus.

Burkhart Pizzanelli announced the promotion of Julie Quink to Managing Principal. Quink has more than 20 years serving clients in the public accounting industry along with several years in private industry. She received a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Elms College and recently returned to her alma mater as an adjunct professor in the MBA program. She is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, the Mass. Society of Certified Public Accountants, and the Assoc. of Certified Fraud Examiners. She also serves on the Pathfinder Regional Vocational Technical High School Committee, the finance committee for the East Quabbin Land Trust, and the board of directors for the Quaboag Hills Chamber of Commerce. In addition to her firm management responsibilities, Quink will continue to actively serve clients, primarily in the accounting and auditing area and as a specialist in forensic accounting. She succeeds Richard Burkhart, who is a co-founder of the firm and has served as managing principal from its inception in 1986. Burkhart will continue to provide his clients with service and expertise as a principal of the firm, sharing his 40 years of experience in public accounting.
HUB International New England, a division of HUB International Limited, a leading global insurance-brokerage, risk-advisory, and employee-benefits firm, announced that Cynthia Squires has joined HUB International New England as manager of Select Business for small to medium-sized business accounts in the Commercial Lines department. Squires will be responsible for the day-to-day management and servicing of small-business accounts, providing oversight and direction to commercial-lines staff, leading quality-control and product-analysis processes, managing departmental retention and acquiring new-business goals, keeping abreast of the latest industry changes and trends, while providing the highest level of service standards and value to clients. She will be based in the East Longmeadow office. Most recently, Cynthia served as a Commercial Lines account executive for Goss & McLain Insurance Agency, where she had worked for almost 30 years. She started her career in the Personal Lines department as a customer-service representative, then worked her way up the ranks to Personal Lines manager and Marketing manager. She then switched over to the Commercial Lines department, where she worked for five years on small and medium-sized accounts. “HUB International New England is dedicated to building a team of experts with local market specialization and industry experience,” said Timm Marini, president of HUB International New England, formerly FieldEddy. “Cynthia brings a wealth of insurance knowledge with her, which will synergize well with our Commercial Lines team. Her extensive knowledge of the insurance industry and leadership skills will provide our clients with value-added solutions and innovative products that are specific to this market.”

Chamber Corners Departments


(413) 787-1555

• Sept. 2: ACCGS September [email protected], 7:15-9 a.m., at the Sheraton Springfield, One Monarch Place. The program will be “Vision 2017 Dream Big: The Future of Springfield,” featuring Kevin Kennedy, Springfield’s chief development officer. Commuters traveling via high-speed rail … fans packing a baseball stadium … sunbathers lounging at the urban beachfront.  Can you dream that big? For more information, call Sarah Mazzaferro at (413) 755-1313. Cost: $20 for members in advance, $25 for members at the door, $30 for non-members.

• Sept. 16: ACCGS September 2015 Speed Networking, 3:30-5 p.m. at Loomis Lakeside at Reeds Landing, 807 Wilbraham Road, Springfield. Network in a fast-paced, round-robin format, then stay for the After 5. Speed Networking admission includes admission to the After 5. For more information, call Sarah Mazzaferro at (413) 755-1313. Cost: $20 for members in advance), $25 for members at the door, $25 for non-members.

• Sept. 16: ACCGS September 2015 After 5, 5-7 p.m., at Loomis Lakeside at Reeds Landing, 807 Wilbraham Road, Springfield. Say goodbye to summer at the lake. For more information, call Sarah Mazzaferro at (413) 755-1313. Cost: $5 for members, $10 for non-members.

• Sept. 22: ACCGS September 2015 Pastries, Politics, and Policies, 8-9 a.m., at the TD Bank Conference Center, 1441 Main St., Springfield. Featuring state Sen. Benjamin Downing, chair of the Joint Committee on Telecommunications, Utilities, and Energy. For more information, call Sarah Mazzaferro at (413) 755-1313. Cost: $15 for members, $25 for non-members.


(413) 253-0700

• Sept. 1: 49th Annual Community Breakfast, 7:30-9 a.m., at the UMass Student Union Ballroom , 41 Campus Center Way, Amherst. Free parking is available in the Campus Center Garage. This traditional school-year kickoff is an opportunity for community and academic leaders to meet newcomers, renew friendships, and talk about plans for the year ahead. Special performance by the UMass Minuteman Marching Band. Tickets: $10. To register or purchase tickets, call (413) 577-1101 or e-mail [email protected]

• Sept. 9: After 5, at Amherst Golf Club, 365 South Pleasant St., Amherst. Sponsored in part by Restore Physical Therapy and Wellness, LLC. Gather for cocktails and light refreshments and mix and mingle with other fellow businessmen and women. Cost: $10 for members, $15 for non-members. To register, visit www.amherstarea.com or call the chamber office at (413) 253-0700.

• Sept. 18: Chamber Breakfast, 7:15 a.m., at the Marriott, 423 Russell St., Hadley. Guest speaker: Ryan Bamford, director of UMass Athletics. Cost: $15 for members, $20 for non-members. To register, visit www.amherstarea.com or call (413) 253-0700.


(413) 594-2101

• Sept. 10: Auction/Beer & Wine Tasting, 6-9 p.m., at the Delaney House, 3 Country Club Road, Holyoke. Presented by Chicopee Savings Bank. Cost: $35 per person. For more information or to register, visit www.chicopeechamber.org

• Sept. 11: CEO Luncheon with Charlie Epstein of Epstein Financial, 11:45 a.m. to 1 p.m., at Collegian Court restaurant, 89 Park St., Chicopee. Cost: $25 for members, $35 for non-members.

• Sept. 16: Salute Breakfast, 7:15-9 a.m., at LifePoint Church, 603 New Ludlow Road, Chicopee. Cost: $23 for members, $28 for non-members. For more information or to register, visit www.chicopeechamber.org.

• Sept. 23: Business After Hours, 5-7 p.m., at Marcotte Ford, 1025 Main St., Holyoke. Cost: $10 for members, $15 for non-members. For more information or to register, visit www.chicopeechamber.org.


(413) 534-3376

• Sept. 16: Annual Clambake 2015, 5-7 p.m., at Holyoke Country Club, One Country Club Road. Treat your client to golf or make this your employee appreciation dinner. Purchase Clambake tickets in advance and play golf (with cart) for $15. Jazz on the patio by Simmer Music. Prize packages auction; win a chance to enter a hole-in-one putting contest to win $1,000. Cost: $35 per ticket, with a 10% discount for seven or more tickets.

• Sept. 17: Leadership Holyoke 2015-16, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., city tour. Meet at Holyoke Community College, and
tour the Massachusetts Green High Performance Computing Center. Get an overview of community demographics and history, and meet community leaders. A series of seven days comprise Leadership Holyoke 2015-16. Faculty members from HCC will participate as instructors and facilitators. Community leaders will participate as speakers and discussion leaders. Program locations subject to change. Objectives include developing a pool of emerging leaders, supporting individuals to increase their potential by acquiring new skills, and networking with community and business leaders. The program will teach participants to apply skills in an organizational setting, expand the individual’s problem-solving methods, skills, and strategies for achieving change; explore leadership styles that are critical to the effective service of potential volunteers; and give participants an in-depth look at the community’s resources, assets, challenges, and opportunities. For business people learning to become community leaders, tuition is $595, due at the start of the course. The fee also covers continental breakfasts, the graduation luncheon, and a trip to the State House in Boston.


(413) 584-1900

• Sept. 9: Northampton Chamber Monthly [email protected], 5-7 p.m., at the Academy of Music. Arrive when you can, stay as long as you can. A casual mix and mingle with your colleagues and friends. Sponsored by Thornes Marketplace, Johnson & Hill Staffing Service, and BusinessWest. Cost: $10 for members.

• Sept. 15: 2015 Workshop: “Spicing up Your PowerPoint Presentations,” 9-11 a.m., at the Greater Northampton Chamber of Commerce, 99 Pleasant St., Northampton. Presented by Pioneer Training. This workshop will focus on using PowerPoint features to take a presentation beyond a simple set of bulleted slides. You’ll learn to how to change slide layouts and designs easily and how to add tables, Smart Art, graphic effects, sound effects, and video to your presentation. You’ll also learn to work with master slides to make global changes to a presentation easily. The workshop will also focus on adding animations to text and objects on slides, as well as adding transitions between slides. You’ll learn how to rehearse the presentation and keep track of timing, how to annotate slides during a presentation, and a variety of handy shortcuts to use while giving a presentation. The workshop will also cover the options for printing a presentation, including how to print notes pages for the presenter and workshop participants. You’ll also learn how to add charts to a presentation, as well as a series of do’s and don’ts  for effective presentation design. Cost: $20 for members, $30 for non-members. RSVP is required, and space is limited. To register, e-mail [email protected]

• Oct. 7: October Arrive @ 5 Open House, 5-7 p.m., at the Greater Northampton Chamber of Commerce. Sponsored by Pioneer Training, Innovative Business Systems, and Florence Savings Bank. Cost: $10 for members


(413) 568-1618

• Sept. 9: September After 5 Connection, 5-7 p.m., at Tekoa Country Club, 459 Russell Road, Westfield. Refreshments will be served. Bring your business cards and make connections. To register, call Pam at the chamber office at (413) 568-1618. Cost: $10 for members, $15 cash for non-members.

• Sept. 14: Mayor’s Coffee Hour, 8-9 a.m. Join us for our monthly Mayor’s Coffee Hour with Westfield Mayor Dan Knapik, hosted by Mestek. This event is free and open to the public. Call Pam at the chamber office at (413) 568-1618 to register for this event so we may give our host a head count.

• Sept. 18: September Chamber Breakfast, 7-9 a.m., at the 104th Fighter Wing ANG, 175 Falcon Dr., Westfield. Platinum sponsor: Baystate Noble Hospital. Gold sponsor: United Bank. Silver sponsor: United Way of Pioneer Valley. For more information or to donate a raffle item, call Pam at the chamber at (413) 568-1618.


(413) 426-3880

• Sept. 2: Wicked Wednesday, 5:30-7:30 p.m., at Cutting Edge Salon, Feeding Hills. Wicked Wednesdays are monthly social events, hosted by various businesses and restaurants. These events bring members and non-members together to network in a laid-back atmosphere. For more information and tickets, contact the chamber office at (413) 426-3880, or e-mail [email protected]

• Sept. 17: Networking Lunch, noon to 1:30 p.m., at Crestview Country Club in Agawam. Must be a member or guest of a member to attend. Enjoy a sit-down lunch while networking with fellow chamber members. Each attendee will get a chance to offer a brief sales pitch. The only cost to attend is the cost of lunch. Attendees will order off the menu and pay separately the day of the event. Please note, we cannot invoice you for these events. For more information, call the chamber office at (413) 426-3880, or e-mail [email protected]

• Sept. 24: Breakfast Seminar, 7-9 a.m., at Oakridge Country Club, Feeding Hills. Admission: $25 for chamber members, $30 for non-members. For more information and tickets, call the chamber office at (413) 426-3880, or e-mail [email protected]

Agenda Departments

Walk for Love Walkathon and Barbecue

Sept. 12: Come celebrate the 90th anniversary of Shriners Hospitals for Children in Springfield at the sixth annual Walk for Love Walkathon and Barbecue. This easy, three-mile walk begins at the hospital and continues through Van Horn Park and back to the hospital for a barbecue. The day of family fun includes Shrine clowns, Zoo on the Go, K-9s for Kids, face painting, a photo booth, music, food, and more. Registration begins at 9 a.m., and the walk begins at 10 a.m.The barbecue and entertainment run from 11 a.m. to 1:30 
p.m. The event will be held rain or shine. Registration fee for walkers and non-walkers alike is $25 per person,
$5 for children 12 and under, and $40 per family. A waiver must be signed to participate in the walkathon. No pets are allowed, except for service animals. Free parking will be available at the Boys and Girls Club located directly across from Shriners Hospital on Carew Street. All proceeds from this event benefit Shriners Hospitals for Children in Springfield. Register online at www.walkforlove.org. Forms will also be available on the day of the walk. For additional information, contact Lee Roberts, the hospital’s public relations specialist, at (413) 755-2307 or [email protected]

Dinner Forum on Business Decision Making

Sept. 16: The UMass Amherst Family Business Center will present a dinner forum from 5 to 8:30 p.m. at the Clarion Hotel and Conference Center in Northampton. The program is called “Effective Business Decision Making in the Fast-changing Environment of the 21st Century.” How many decisions do you make in the course of each business day? How often are they based on a gut feeling, versus measurable, relevant data? How accurate is your gut, and how well can you really tune into it? And how do you know which data is accurate, not to mention relevant? How can you be sure you’re considering all the consequences? Are you reaching for solutions that worked before, not sure they’re what is needed for more complex dilemmas? Are you influenced by biases you’re not even aware of? This presentation could help you, by exploring the practical aspects of the latest research on effective decision making and how family and closely held businesses are using it to create success. Presenters include Vana Nespor, chief learning officer and dean of Online and Adult Studies at Bay Path University, and Tom Loper, associate provost and dean of Bay Path’s graduate Business program. Call Ira Bryck, Family Business Center director, at (413) 545-4545 for more information.

‘Fall Back in Time’ at Holyoke Merry-Go-Round

Sept. 18: The Holyoke Merry-Go-Round, the prized carousel with a storied history that dates back to the early 1900s, announced a “Fall Back in Time” fund-raiser to remember the magic of Mountain Park, to be held at the carousel site, 221 Appleton St., from 6 to 10 p.m. Tickets are on sale now for the event, which will support the ongoing maintenance and operation of the ride. The Holyoke Merry-Go-Round — also known as Holyoke’s Happiness Machine — has delighted children and families since the 1920s, when it was featured at Mountain Park, an amusement park on the side of Mount Tom. “The merry-go-round plays a vital role in the history of Holyoke, and our residents should be proud of their efforts to preserve it,” said Angela Wright, executive director. “The Holyoke Merry-Go-Round is a nonprofit that is totally self-supporting and does not receive city, state, or federal funding to maintain its operation. We rely on our annual preservation fund, donations, and various fund-raising events to keep the carousel spinning.” The fund-raiser will feature food and a cash bar prepared by the Log Cabin; live music including sax player Tom Tisdell, his musicians, and a banjo player; train rides to the mall and back provided by the Pioneer Valley Railroad; and carousel rides. Tickets are $45 per person or $400 for a table of 10. A grand raffle will also be held, with $8,000 in prizes: $5,000 for first place, $2,000 for second place, and $1,000 for third place. Raffle tickets are $100 each. Event and raffle tickets are available now at the Holyoke Merry-Go-Round concession or by calling Meghan O’Connor at (413) 427-7629 or Susan Leary at (413) 592-7573. For more information or to purchase tickets, call (413) 538-9838 or visit holyokemerrygoround.org.

Mutts & Mimosas

Sept. 20: Dakin Humane Society has been awarded a $7,500 grant from the Petco Foundation as the Top Dog sponsor of Dakin’s annual fund-raiser, Mutts & Mimosas. The brunch event will take place from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Quonquont Farm & Orchard in Whately, rain or shine. Guests, who are encouraged to bring their dogs, can enjoy a make-your-own mimosa bar, live traditional Irish music, a raffle and silent auction, apple-picking, dog-walking trails, and other fun activities. The food will be catered by Seth Mias, and an optional dog meal is available for $10. Event attendees are asked to bring dry or canned cat food to support Dakin’s Pet Food Bank program. Tickets are $50 per person and can be ordered online at www.dakinhumane.org or by calling event manager Gina Ciprari at (413) 781-4000, ext. 136. According to Dakin Executive Director Leslie Harris, “this generous grant from Petco Foundation will help us to produce an effective — and memorable — fund-raiser. Mutts & Mimosas has become a tradition among Dakin supporters and dog enthusiasts around the region, and we’re happy to know that they look forward to coming to this event with their dogs each year. With Petco Foundation’s support, we will be able to leverage other donations to Mutts & Mimosas and extend our services to more animals and their people.” The Petco Foundation has served as a voice for companion animals across the country since 1999. Today, with more than 8,000 local animal welfare partners across the country, the foundation donates approximately $15 million a year to make a difference in the lives of millions of animals. Money raised helps fund animal-welfare organizations, spay-and-neuter efforts, animal-assisted therapy programs, and humane education. The majority of the funds raised remain in the communities where they were raised, as well as benefiting animal-welfare efforts nationwide. Other sponsors for Mutts & Mimosas include Gage-Wiley & Co. Inc., Walter’s Propane, Sarah’s Pet Services, Rice Family Foundation, Five Star Building Corp., WHMP, WMAS, Western Mass News, MassLive.com, and Quonquont Farm & Orchard.

Get On Board!

Oct. 8: OnBoard, a Springfield-based nonprofit organization that matches qualified individuals and area boards of directors, is inviting local organizations and businesses to participate or become a sponsor in the “Get On Board!” event in October. The event, to be held from 5 to 7 p.m. at the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, will connect local organizations with individuals looking to increase their community involvement. OnBoard was founded in the mid-’90s by attorney Ellen Freyman of Shatz, Schwartz & Fentin, P.C. The group’s mission is to help organizations expand their governance diversity by enlisting women, people of color, and other under-represented populations to their boards of directors/trustees, committees, and advisory groups. OnBoard has been connecting qualified people in the Greater Springfield area with organizations seeking leadership that reflects the diversity of the region. “Our goal with ‘Get On Board!’ is to facilitate an introduction of new talent and organizations around Greater Springfield,” said Freyman. “Diversifying your board of directors by recruiting members of under-represented populations can provide you with insight into different ways to engage with the community at large. Our goal is to create new relationships for both the individuals and the organizations who will benefit from each other’s resources and experience.” The cost for organizations to register to participate in the event is $100 before Aug. 31 and $125 if submitted after Aug. 31. As a nonprofit organization itself, OnBoard relies on the support of local businesses in order to hold ‘Get On Board.’ A number of funding options are available to local businesses who are interested in contributing to the event, including a $500 community-partner sponsorship and a $1,000 general-sponsorship opportunity. To register or become a business sponsor, visit www.diversityonboard.org.

Williamstown Film Festival Presents Wind-Up Fest

Oct. 15-18: The annual Williamstown Film Festival (WFF), now in its 17th year, welcomes big changes with new faces, a new name, and new programming focus. Slated for Oct. 15-18, WFF Presents: Wind-Up Fest is a nonfiction festival with documentary film as its backbone. Other forms of nonfiction will be in conversation with documentaries, including long-form journalism, radio podcasts, photography, and social-practice art. The event’s new artistic director, Paul Sturtz, is also the co-director at the True/False Film Fest in Columbia, Mo., and its new managing director, Sandra Thomas, is the former executive director of Images Cinema in Williamstown. “Our aim is to provide a unique, distinctive event for North Adams and Williamstown while serving as a destination festival for lovers of nonfiction. We are living in a time when nonfiction storytelling is offering one of the most vital, urgent ways forward,” Sturtz said. The festival will be curated by Sturtz, who was selected (along with his True/False co-director David Wilson) as one of 40 people in the inaugural Indiewire Influencers list, described as “visionaries that are changing the course of film.” “I’m excited to work with Paul to make his creative vision a reality,” said Thomas. “Working in partnership with the community, engaging a broad audience, and strengthening the festival’s presence are all important elements of the fest.” With the addition of Sturtz and return of Thomas, the board of directors announced the retirement of festival Executive Director Steve Lawson. “It’s been an exhilarating ride, but after 15 seasons as executive director, I felt it was time to pass the torch,” said Lawson. The festival has offices in North Adams and Williamstown and can reached at [email protected] or (413) 458-9700.

Noble Ball

Oct. 17: Baystate Noble Hospital is preparing for the 51st Anniversary Noble Ball co-chaired by the Queenin family: Kevin, Barbara, Jay, Janine, Jon and Lisa. “Magic of Motown – Motor City Review” will take place the MassMutual Center in Springfield. More than 800 guests are expected to attend the black-tie event, which will feature live entertainment, silent and live auctions, formal dinner, cocktails, dancing, and more. Since the first ball in 1959, the Hospital has used this signature event to raise money for operating funds, building improvements, equipment purchases, and more. Proceeds from this year’s ball will be added to last year’s funds and used to enhance Baystate Noble’s entrance and reception area to provide updated ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) access. “Our goal is to make Baystate Noble easily accessible for all,” said Allison Gearing-Kalill, vice president of Community Development. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit www.baystatenoblehospital.org/ball or e-mail [email protected]

Western Mass. Business Expo

Nov. 4: Comcast Business will present the fifth annual Western Mass. Business Expo at the MassMutual Center in downtown Springfield, produced by BusinessWest and the Healthcare News in partnership with Go Graphix and Rider Productions. The business-to-business show will feature more than 100 booths, seminars and Show Floor Theater presentations, breakfast and lunch programs (the former featuring Harpoon Brewery CEO Dan Kenary as keynote speaker), and a day-capping Expo Social. Current sponsors include Comcast Business, presenting sponsor; Health New England, Johnson & Hill Staffing Services, MGM Springfield, and Wild Apple Design, director-level sponsors; the Isenberg School of Business at UMass Amherst, education sponsor; Elms College, information-center sponsor; and 94.7 WMAS, media sponsor. Additional sponsorship opportunities are available. Exhibitor spaces are also available; booth prices start at $750. For more information on sponsorships or booth purchase, call (413) 781-8600, ext. 100.

Court Dockets Departments

The following is a compilation of recent lawsuits involving area businesses and organizations. These are strictly allegations that have yet to be proven in a court of law. Readers are advised to contact the parties listed, or the court, for more information concerning the individual claims.


Can Capital Asset Servicing Inc. f/k/a New Logic Business Loans Inc. v. Jacinto-Blanco Munoz d/b/a Chintos Pizza Restaurant
Allegation: Breach of contract: $9,549.32
Filed: 6/4/2015

Jose Garcia v. Rodney O. Maye and Excellence Auto Exchange Inc.

Allegation: Vehicle sold without a valid title: $4,286.06
Filed: 6/16/15


Jason M. Kicza d/b/a Northeast Treecare & Landscaping v. Split Excavating Inc.
Allegation: Non-payment for services rendered: $24,402.50
Filed: 5/22/15


Brett J. Vottero v. Garda CL New England Inc., Gary Holland, Michael Kelly, and Michael Zanatta
Allegation: Defendants wrongfully accused defendant of a crime: $790,000
Filed: 6/22/15

Common Capital Inc. v. CT-Family Care Services, LLC and Justinian Rweyemamil
Allegation: Default on payment of note: $86,190.50
Filed: 6/16/15

Richard Millitello and Santiago Alvarez v. JD Rivet & Co. Inc. and David King
Allegation: Workplace discrimination: $350,000+
Filed: 6/3/15

TD Bank v. Arcadia Glass Inc.
Allegation: Default on promissory note: $117,973.77
Filed: 6/17/15


Christopher Canty v. James Fiore d/b/a One Stop Plaza & HTMD Inc.
Allegation: Negligent failure to provide adequate security: $24,353.17
Filed: 5/29/15

Western Mass Electric Co. v. County Waste & Recycling Services Inc., Verizon New England Inc., and Shaun L. Hurst
Allegation: CWRS truck, operated by Mr. Hurst, became entangled in low-hanging telephone wires, which brought down plaintiff’s electric poles: $5,611
Filed: 6/22/15

Departments Picture This

Send photos with a caption and contact information to:  ‘ Picture This’ c/o BusinessWest Magazine, 1441 Main Street, Springfield, MA 01103 or to [email protected]swest.com


Distinguished Citizen Award

Al Kasper

Al Kasper, right, vice president of Savage Arms, recently received the 2015 Distinguished Citizen Award from the Western Mass. Council of the Boy Scouts of America. Kasper was honored for his longstanding community involvement, leadership, and dedicated service to others. “It’s very humbling,” Kasper said of receiving the prestigious award. “The Western Massachusetts Boy Scouts are an important part of this community, and to be recognized by them is such an honor.” The Western Mass. Council presented Kasper with the Distinguished Citizen Award at a gala honoring area scouts. Pictured with Kasper is Gene Cassidy, CEO of the Eastern States Exposition, and a previous recipient of the Distinguished Citizen Award.

Daily News

SPRINGFIELD — Springfield College Assistant Professor of Research and Statistics Elizabeth Mullin has been awarded a one-year grant by the Assoc. for Applied Sport Psychology (AASP) for her research in developing the “Heterosexist Attitudes in Sport — Gay Male scale.” Funding will assist in the development of a questionnaire that will include national and regional samples from NCAA male athletes.
Grants from the AASP are intended to provide support to professionals and students for their research endeavors. Preference is given to proposals that integrate research and practice, are submitted by early professionals or students, and require money to conduct a worthy project and no other funding is available.

“I want to thank the AASP and Springfield College director of Grants and Sponsored Research Linda Marston for their help in receiving this grant,” said Mullin, who earned a master’s degree in sport and exercise psychology in 2008 and a PhD in sport and exercise psychology in 2011, from Springfield College. “The research conducted will produce real stats and results that can be utilized in the classroom and on the field at Springfield College.”

Mullin has been recognized by her peers for her exemplary teaching abilities, her multiple presentations and published works in physical and health education, and her outstanding administration and strong leadership roles within the Society of Health and Physical Educators (SHAPE) America. Mullin received the 2015 Mabel Lee Award during the recent annual SHAPE America National Conference in Seattle. The Mabel Lee Award recognizes members of SHAPE America who have demonstrated outstanding potential in scholarship, teaching, and professional leadership.

Mullin recently served as the Research Committee chair for the SHAPE America Eastern District Conference hosted at the Springfield Sheraton Hotel in February 2015. More than 40 combined Springfield College faculty members, students, and alumni accounted for more than 25% of the presentations at the Eastern District Conference.

Daily News

HOLYOKE — Holyoke Medical Center announced that William Sullivan of West Springfield has joined the hospital as director of Materials Management. In this role, Sullivan will lead the Materials Management Department’s purchasing, distribution, and linen teams in the sourcing of medical equipment and supplies, with the ultimate goal of delivering exceptional patient care.

“Bill is a tremendous addition to the HMC community,” said Spiros Hatiras, president and CEO, Holyoke Medical Center and Valley Health Systems Inc. “He is deeply committed to transforming the delivery and financing of products, which contribute greatly to our efforts in providing a high-quality, affordable, and patient-centered system of care in the Pioneer Valley.”

Of his appointment, Sullivan said, “I am honored to join HMC, which goes the extra mile to continually improve the patient experience by making investments in community-based healthcare services. I look forward to collaborating with HMC’s award-winning team of healthcare professionals to develop strategies that lead to even better patient outcomes.”

In previous roles, Sullivan has successfully identified cost-saving opportunities and streamlined logistics to improve the flow of products through supply chain. As a senior purchasing agent at Baystate Health in Holyoke, he helped bolster patient care through the enhancement of cost savings opportunities for medical and surgical products. Sullivan earned his bachelor of Business Administration degree from Westfield State College in 2001.

Daily News

SPRINGFIELD — The Springfield Museums’ monthly tour and lecture schedule for September features the return of the popular Thursday Museums à la Carte lectures after a summer hiatus.

The lectures are held weekly at 12:15 p.m. in the Michele and Donald D’Amour Museum of Fine Arts. Admission is $4 ($2 for members of the Springfield Museums); visitors are invited to bring a bag lunch (cookies and coffee are provided). For more information about Museums à la Carte, call 413-263-6800, ext. 488. This month’s lectures include:
• Sept. 10: The American Impressionists at Old Lyme. Jeff Andersen, director of the Florence Griswold Museum, discusses how the small New England village fostered a new chapter in American art history.
• Sept. 17: The Victorian Lady, Dressing from Corset to Gloves! Join performance artist Kandie Carle as she shares her insights into the fashion, lifestyle, manners, and etiquette of the 1890s Gilded Age — while dressing “from the inside out.”
• Sept. 24: Rhodes’ Reflections on Classical Music Appreciation. Kevin Rhodes, music director of the Springfield Symphony Orchestra, offers a personal tour of the SSO’s forthcoming 72nd season.

As an added feature, museum docents will be leading guided gallery discussions titled “Continuing Conversations” following lectures on the second and fourth Thursdays of each month (Museums members only). September’s “Conversations” will take place on Sept. 10 and Sept. 24 at 1:30 p.m. (check with Welcome Center for locations).

Monthly walking tours are presented on second Saturdays in collaboration with the Armoury-Quadrangle Civic Association (AQCA). This year’s tours will revisit Springfield street locations that were photographed by the WPA 75 years ago. On Sept. 12, John Morse, president an publisher of Merriam-Webster, will lead a tour of Federal, Pearl, and Worthington Streets. Walking tours are free for Springfield Museums and AQCA members, $5 non-members, and start at the Museums’ Welcome Center.