People on the Move
Webber & Grinnell announced that Colin Leduc has joined the agency as an account executive. He brings insurance-agency experience to the firm, as well as knowledge gained during his many years as a recruiter for ADP. Leduc was raised in Longmeadow and grew up working in his father’s sheet-metal shop in Holyoke. This experience greatly contributed to his passion for protecting the assets of local, family-owned businesses — and his decision to move to Webber & Grinnell. “I spent my life watching my father work hard to provide for our family,” he said. “I was drawn to Webber & Grinnell because of their commitment to local businesses, as well as the work environment they provide for their staff.” Bill Grinnell, president of Webber & Grinnell, noted that “Colin has a very dynamic personality and is a very strong addition to the Webber & Grinnell family. He’s very dedicated to helping the firm grow, especially in the field of family business.”
October Mountain Financial Advisors announced it has appointed Gary Schiff as managing director of the firm, which provides client-centered investment-management, financial-planning, and trust-administration services to clients in Berkshire County and throughout New England. Formed earlier this year, October Mountain Financial Advisors is an alliance of Lee Bank and St. Germain Investment Management, based in Springfield. “We’re excited to welcome Gary to October Mountain Financial Advisors. As managing director, he will be leading our efforts in the Berkshires and our alliance with Lee Bank,” said Tim Suffish, senior vice president and head of equities at St. Germain Investment Management. “Gary joins us with over 30 years in the business of investments and banking, and a passion for delivering professional and accountable service to clients at the local level. It’s this consistency with our core beliefs, along with Gary’s experience in the industry, that will benefit all of our clients in the Berkshires and the region.” Schiff most recently served as vice president, senior investment advisor with the Private Client Group at TD Wealth in Pittsfield from 2001 to 2016. Prior to his position with TD Wealth, he joined Bank of Boston’s Berkshire Region senior management team in 1995, and through successive mergers leading to TD’s current ownership, held senior positions at the bank in marketing, communications, government, and public relations. Schiff is a graduate of Middlebury College, received his master’s degree from Harvard University, and has attended the Cannon Financial Institute Trust School. He holds FINRA Series 7 and 66 registrations. Schiff is presently a member of the Berkshire Funders’ Roundtable and serves as a corporator of the Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts Foundation, a member of the Congregation Knesset Israel Investment Committee, a member of the Berkshire County Estate Planning Council, and chair of the Jewish Federation of the Berkshires Investment Committee. He is a past director and president of the Berkshire Chamber of Commerce, past director of the Berkshire Economic Development Corp. and the Colonial Theatre, and a former member of the Lenox Planning Board, Berkshire County Regional Employment Board, and Berkshire Community College Business Advisory Committee. Along with Schiff and Suffish, October Mountain Financial Advisors’ principal team includes St. Germain Investment Management’s Michael Matty, president and director; Richard Bleser, vice president, portfolio manager; Matthew Farkas, vice president, portfolio manager; and Thaddeus Welch, portfolio manager. “I worked closely with Gary and Tim as portfolio managers with Banknorth Wealth Management. Together we served a significant number of individual, family, and institutional clients throughout Berkshire County and nationally,” said Chuck Leach, president and CEO of Lee Bank. “We’re all Berkshire residents, and October Mountain’s base in Lee enables us to again collaborate closely as a team that places the highest value on client relationships and locally made investment decisions.”
Chuck Leach, president and CEO of Lee Bank, announced that Marianne Fresia was named assistant vice president, private banking and trust services. She will focus on attracting, growing, and retaining Lee Bank’s trust clients, and will serve as liaison to October Mountain Financial Advisors’ team for clients interested in wealth management. October Mountain Financial Advisors, an alliance of Lee Bank and St. Germain Investment Management, was formed earlier this year. In her new role, Fresia will act as a conduit between retail banking, commercial banking, and October Mountain Financial Advisors to ensure that customers are aware of and have access to products and services from all areas. Fresia joins Lee Bank after serving for six years as a financial trust administrator at Berkshire Bank Wealth Management in Lenox. Prior to her position in wealth management, she held various roles at Berkshire Bank in Pittsfield. Fresia has completed coursework toward achieving the Certified Trust and Financial Advisor (CTFA) designation and will sit for the exam in August.
Springfield College Exercise Science and Sport Studies Chair M. Susan Guyer will be awarded both the Most Distinguished Athletic Trainer Award and the Gail Weldon Award of Excellence during the National Athletic Trainers’ Assoc. (NATA) annual conference in Baltimore on June 22-25. The Most Distinguished Athletic Trainer award recognizes NATA members who have demonstrated exceptional commitment to leadership, volunteer service, advocacy, and distinguished professional activities as an athletic trainer. Currently, Guyer serves as the NATA District 1 secretary and the vice president for governance for the NATA Research and Education Foundation. She also has held positions of public relations chair and president of the Athletic Training Assoc. of Massachusetts. “Dr. Sue Guyer is truly a gifted and talented teacher, mentor, leader, and serves as an amazing role model to women who would like to enter the profession of athletic training,” said Tracey Matthews, dean of the Springfield College School of Health, Physical Education, and Recreation. “Her passion and deep commitment for her discipline is unprecedented.” The Gail Weldon Award of Excellence recognizes one athletic trainer each year who has displayed an exceptional commitment to mentoring, professional development, and a balanced life for female athletic trainers or offered significant contributions to improve the healthcare of women. “We are very lucky to have such an amazing role model, faculty, and leader in athletic training at Springfield College,” Matthews added. “She continues to elevate the profession everyday. I can’t think of another person who is so deserving of these awards from the NATA.” Since arriving at Springfield College in 2001, Guyer has taught courses in prevention of athletic injuries, research methods and education, athletic-injury rehabilitation and therapeutic exercise, and human anatomy. She has been invited to speak internationally on the prevention of athletic injuries and concussions in China and at the European Society of Athletic Training and Therapy Conference in Jerzmanowice, Poland. In addition, Guyer has also presented at the Eastern Athletic Trainers’ Assoc. and the National Athletic Trainers’ Assoc. annual meetings and the NATA Educators’ Conference on issues relating to teaching and learning. She is also a manuscript reviewer for the Athletic Therapy Today Journal and the Journal of Athletic Training.
Bryn Nowell has been named a finalist in the BlogPaws 2016 Nose-to-Nose Pet Blogging and Social Media Awards. Her blog, A Dog Walks into a Bar (www.adogwalksintoabar.com), was selected by judges to compete in the Best New Pet Blog category at the BlogPaws Annual Conference in Phoenix on June 23-25. The first social-media network for pet bloggers, BlogPaws (www.blogpaws.com) hosted its first pet-friendly social-media and marketing conference in 2010, and has grown annually into the biggest social-media event and conference of its kind, drawing attendees from all over the world. Nowell was one of 48 finalists in 12 categories chosen by a panel of industry professionals. From these 48, 12 winners will be selected by judges based on creativity, expertise, and performance in their respective categories. “Our bloggers strive to be something at BlogPaws, not just to write something or create something,” said BlogPaws co-founder Yvonne DiVita. “It’s about learning, growing, and striving for excellence. BlogPaws rewards them with our Annual Nose-to-Nose Awards, sharing the 48 finalists leading up to our conference, then awarding the winners at a red-carpet ceremony at the close of our conference.” A Dog Walks into a Bar is a site that focuses on “paws, pints, and prose — all things dogs and drinking.” Nowell, the author and site designer, decided to focus on the two things she loves, dogs and adult beverages. As such, the page includes product reviews, DIY ideas, giveaways, and insights on both industries.