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Eastern States Exposition Announces Staff Changes

WEST SPRINGFIELD — The Eastern States Exposition (ESE) announced the following staff appointments and promotions:

Robert Gottsche Jr. was promoted to Sales manager. He will be responsible for all Big E vendors and concessionaires, and will oversee ESE’s year-round event coordinators. Gottsche first joined the staff of the Exposition in 1983 and became an event coordinator in 1991. He worked in the Special Events department for eight years during the Big E as well as the Sales department as a show coordinator throughout the year. In 1999, he began overseeing Young Building exhibitors during the fair and quickly added vendor and vendor-space sales and contracting to his list of responsibilities.

Throughout the year, he will contract all commercial vendors and food concessions at the Big E. As the Fair approaches, he will place all on-grounds sales outlets inside and outside all buildings and grounds. Gottsche is also responsible for all year-round event coordinators and will serve in that capacity as needed.

Steve Ferraro has been named captain of Parking & Security. He will oversee all parking for weekend events and the Big E, as well as assist Cliff Hedges, director of Public Safety & Security, with scheduling security staff for 24-hour and event coverage. Ferraro started working at ESE at age 14 when his father, the late Albert Ferraro, a long-time Big E employee, oversaw parking for the Exposition.

A graduate of Springfield Technical High School, Ferraro continued his education at Springfield Technical Community College studying metal machining before starting a career at Lenox in 1978 as a tool and die maker. During his time there, he built machines and traveled around the world as an installer. He brought machinery to Italy, set up a band-saw center in China, and trained stateside co-workers on cutter grinders that were brought back from Switzerland. Meanwhile, he also worked as a parker at ESE during his free time. He stepped into the position of Parking manager in 2015.

Terri Brown is ESE’s Creative Arts/New England Center program manager. She has been affiliated with ESE since 2011 as the building’s 4-H coordinator, served as assistant to the Creative Arts coordinator in 2017, and became co-coordinator of the department in 2018. In her new position, she will oversee the management and administration of all contests, 4-H participation, displays, and the New England Center stage.

Brown graduated from Southwick High School, Holyoke Community College, and the University of New Hampshire, where she earned a degree in zoology. She is a retired government accountant and is active in 4-H in Southwick.

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