People on the Move

People on the Move

Elisa Speranza

Elisa Speranza

Daniel Rukakoski

Daniel Rukakoski

Tighe & Bond Inc. recently appointed two new members — Elisa Speranza and Daniel Rukakoski — to its board of directors for three-year terms. “Both Elisa and Dan bring substantial industry experience and leadership to Tighe & Bond that will be an asset to our strategic and growth initiatives,” said Robert Belitz, president and CEO. “Elisa’s fresh external perspective and Dan’s professional successes at our firm will complement our existing board of directors.” Speranza brings many years of industry experience from her various leadership roles. As a business-line president and senior executive and corporate director at global project-management firm CH2M (acquired by Jacobs in 2017), she led the implementation of transformative policies regarding corporate social responsibility and award-winning global-sustainability programs. Prior to her career in the private sector, she served in project manager and director roles at the Boston Water and Sewer Commission and the Massachusetts Water Resources Authority. She has been an active board member, volunteer, and officer with industry organizations such as the U.S. Water Alliance, the American Water Works Assoc., the New England Water Works Assoc., and the Water Environment Federation, and is a past president of the Massachusetts Water Works Assoc. Speranza has helped guide strategy, brand, communications, and governance decisions for several companies, water utilities, and nonprofit organizations, including for the global, non-governmental organization Water for People, where she served as board chair. She is also a university instructor and has authored water-industry reference works on sustainable financing, communications, asset management, and leadership. Rukakoski has more than 24 years of experience in environmental consulting, including environmental and energy permitting, wetland delineation, sediment evaluations, regulatory negotiations, site assessment, and environmental construction observation. As a project director and client services manager, he regularly leads the environmental permitting efforts for municipal, commercial, and public utility projects throughout the Northeast. He often provides senior technical guidance on dam removal, dam repair, and dredging projects. Most recently, Rukakoski has served as a technical director in Tighe & Bond’s Environmental Business line and serves on numerous corporate committees. Speranza and Rukakoski join five other Tighe & Bond board members: Belitz, Peter Grabowski, Tiffany Labrie, Bradlee Mezquita, and Patrick McCann.

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Darcey Kemp

Darcey Kemp

Springfield Technical Community College (STCC) has named a higher-education administrator from New York as vice president of Student Affairs. Darcey Kemp began her new post on April 27. She had served as the assistant vice president for Student Development, Leadership, and Completion Initiatives at the College of Saint Rose in Albany, N.Y. since 2015. In her leadership role, Kemp will oversee the division at STCC charged with providing support that extends the classroom experience, including student governance and clubs, athletics, tutoring, advising, and student health and wellness. From admissions to graduation, Students Affairs enhances opportunities for student development, involvement, and transformation at an institution known for degrees in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM), signature health programs, and a highly diverse student body. STCC President John Cook called Kemp an outstanding leader who made an impression on the search committee. “Throughout the search process, Ms. Kemp demonstrated she has the qualities we were looking for in a vice president of Student Affairs,” he said. “I look forward to her serving as part of our team at STCC.” Kemp said she was honored to accept the new role at STCC. “I am committed to fostering an inclusive and engaged community that puts students first. I look forward to getting to know the faculty and staff and building strong relationships with students to help them achieve success.” Prior to serving at the College of Saint Rose, Kemp spent nearly a decade at Mercyhurst University in Pennsylvania. She served, respectively, as dean of students for the North East campus and as director of the Center for Student Engagement & Leadership Development at the Erie campus. Kemp holds a bachelor’s degree and an MBA from Canisius College in Buffalo, N.Y.

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Anthony (Tony) Franco

Anthony (Tony) Franco

Arrha Credit Union President and CEO Michael Ostrowski recently welcomed Anthony (Tony) Franco as the new vice president of Commercial Lending. Franco has more than 25 years of banking experience and been recognized throughout his banking-industry career for outstanding member service. Recently he was the vice president of Special Assets at United Bank. “It is with great excitement that we welcome Tony to the Arrha team and begin offering commercial products and services. Arrha now has a complete array of all commercial deposit products and lending services,” Ostrowski said. “Tony is known for helping area businesses achieve their goals and direct them to what works best for them. He lives local and believes in the power of local business.” Added Franco, “I am excited to be part of the Arrha Credit Union family and launch the Commercial Lending area to serve local businesses and its members. I look forward to providing caring service, offering rewarding business-membership benefits to existing and new members, and growing these relationships.”

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PeoplesBank announced the appointment of Jennifer DeBarge as assistant vice president of Marketing. She has more than 22 years of financial-services and marketing experience. In her new position, she will provide strategic direction and execution for various marketing projects, supporting the lines of business and brand. “Jennifer is an asset to our team and brings a tremendous depth of bank marketing experience,” said Matthew Bannister, first vice president, Marketing and Corporate Responsibility at PeoplesBank. “We are looking forward to her contributions as she will be helping us communicate and connect with our customers and communities.” DeBarge earned an MBA in entrepreneurial and innovative thinking from Bay Path University and a bachelor’s degree from Westfield State University. She also received a certificate from the ABA School of Marketing & Management. She has a history of community service and currently serves on the board of directors for the Westfield Boys & Girls Club.

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Matthew Pittenger

Matthew Pittenger

Florence Bank announced that Matthew Pittenger was recently selected as a recipient of its President’s Award. The President’s Award was established by the bank in 1995, affording employees the annual opportunity to nominate their peers for this prestigious honor that recognizes outstanding performance, customer service, and overall contribution to Florence Bank. Pittenger was nominated by numerous colleagues. Pittenger is the senior information technology specialist at the main headquarters in Florence and has worked at Florence Bank for six years. He holds a bachelor’s degree in computer science from UMass Amherst. Pittenger also holds a Comptia A+ certification, which is the industry standard for establishing careers in information technology and the preferred qualifying credential for technical support and operational roles. “Matt is a perfect example of how hard work and determination truly pays off,” said Kevin Day, president and CEO of Florence Bank. “His peers have praised his dedication, enthusiasm, and the impressive skill set that he brings to the job each day. We’re happy to have Matt as part of our team, and the President’s Award is the perfect milestone to showcase his service to the bank.”

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Gina Maroni

Gina Maroni

Alexis Miarecki

Alexis Miarecki

UMassFive College Federal Credit Union announced the recent promotion of two employees. Gina Maroni has been promoted to vice president of Finance and chief financial officer. She has taken on the responsibility of financial oversight, strategizing, and budgeting for the credit union, and previously served as UMassFive’s assistant vice president of Finance and controller for 18 months. Prior to joining UMassFive, she was the senior vice president of Finance and chief financial officer at Athol Credit Union. Alexis Miarecki has been promoted to manager of Marketing. Transitioning from her former role as graphic designer, she is now responsible for managing the day-to-day operations of the Marketing department, including oversight of the marketing team, creative direction, and developing and executing all marketing and promotional plans for UMassFive in collaboration with the vice president of Marketing.

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Jennifer Beineke has been named the recipient of the Excellence in Teaching Award at Western New England University (WNEU). She is a professor of Mathematics in the university’s College of Arts and Sciences. Winners of this prestigious award are nominated by students, faculty, and administrators for outstanding contributions as educators and advisors. During the review process, current and former students praised Beineke as somebody who “made me see the beauty of mathematics” and “always pushed us to be our best.” Another added, “when I walked out of her classroom for the final time, I knew I was a different student and person than the one who had walked in.” Faculty members describe Beineke as having “a natural gift for explaining challenging concepts,” and “using a variety of methods to engage students in thinking about and solving problems.” Beineke, who has been teaching at WNEU since 2001, received undergraduate degrees in mathematics and French from Purdue University, and earned her master’s and Ph.D. degrees from UCLA. Her research is in the area of analytic number theory. In conjunction with the National Museum of Mathematics, she recently co-edited the three-volume series The Mathematics of Various Entertaining Subjects.

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