People on the Move

People on the Move

Attorney Meaghan Murphy recently joined Skoler, Abbott & Presser, P.C., a labor and employment law firm serving employers in Massachusetts and Connecticut. Murphy has more than six years of experience in general litigation and labor and employment law. She will advise clients regarding all employment-related matters, including, but not limited to, compliance with state, federal, and local laws, and discipline of employees. She will also create workplace policies for clients and represent them in various forums, including at the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination, the Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities, government agencies, and in state and federal court. Murphy is a graduate of Amherst College and received her law degree from Western New England University School of Law. She was named to the Super Lawyers Rising Star list in 2018 and 2019. She has also been an active volunteer with Hampden County Big Brothers Big Sisters since 2018.

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Peter DePergola II

Peter DePergola II

Elms College announced the appointment of Peter DePergola II, associate professor of Bioethics and Medical Humanities, as executive director of the newly created St. John Paul II Center for Ethics, Religion, and Culture (CERC). DePergola is also associate professor of Philosophy and Religious Studies and the director of the Bioethics and Medical Humanities program at Elms. CERC was launched on Oct. 13 to increase engagement and discourse on the most pressing and complex questions related to ethics, religion, and culture in today’s society, and to lead the regional community in thoughtful, engaging dialogue. A $1 million naming gift from an anonymous donor and two six-figure contributions from Carolyn Jacobs, and B. John (Jack) and Colette Dill and family helped the college establish the center. In addition to his appointment as CERC executive director, DePergola has been named the Shaughness Family Chair for the Study of the Humanities, which is the college’s only endowed chair. The Shaughness Family Chair was funded in 1994 by the late L. Stella Shaughness, and the endowment income is to be used to promote academic excellence by supporting teaching, publishing, and/or research in the humanities. At Baystate Health, DePergola serves as chief ethics officer, senior director of Clinical Ethics, chief of the Ethics Consultation Service, and chair of the ethics advisory committee. He also holds secondary academic and research appointments at UMass Medical School, Sacred Heart University, the American Academy of Neurology, and TEDMED. A professional member of several international academic societies and associations, DePergola earned his bachelor’s degree in philosophy and religious studies at Elms College, his MTS in ethics at Boston College, and his Ph.D. in healthcare ethics at Duquesne University. He completed his residency in neuroethics at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, his fellowship in neuropsychiatric ethics at Tufts University School of Medicine, and his advanced training in neurothanatological ethics at Harvard Medical School.

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Nikki Burnett

Nikki Burnett

Nikki Burnett, executive director of Educare Springfield, the nation’s 24th Educare early-education center, has been appointed to a number of national Educare-related boards, including the Educare Learning Network (ELN) collaborative fundraising advisory board, which finds opportunities for greater financial sustainability of the ELN through enhanced fundraising programming. Burnett, the first executive director of Educare Springfield, has also joined the Red Nose Day advisory board, which provides guidance over the grant from Comic Relief’s Red Nose Day Fund on behalf of the ELN. Burnett has also joined the Educare Policy Work Group, which guides and supports the collective network’s engagement in early-childhood policy and advocacy, and the Educare Learning Network steering committee, which informs the direction of the annual meeting. Locally, Burnett has also joined a number of local serving boards, including the board of trustees of the Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts, as well as the boards of Holyoke Community College Foundation and Dress for Success. Burnett earned her undergraduate degree in leadership and organizational science from Bay Path University. She will be completing her master’s degree in leadership and negotiation from Bay Path in 2020. Before joining Educare, she served as regional vice president of Multicultural Initiatives for the American Heart Assoc., where she worked throughout the New England region to build capacity and support revenue generation around community health and education initiatives. She has more than a decade of leadership experience and, prior to her position with the American Heart Assoc., worked at Baystate Health as education coordinator of Cardiopulmonary Services. At Baystate, she managed three cardiology fellowship programs. Burnett also has been actively involved in other community organizations in Springfield and in the region, having served on the board of the Public Health Institute of Western Massachusetts, the Baystate Health community benefits advisory board, and Live Well Springfield, an organization that promotes a culture of health in Springfield.

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For the second time in the award’s history, the Advertising Club of Western Massachusetts’ trustees of the Order of William Pynchon have Pynchon Medal recipients amidst a global pandemic. Slated to receive the Advertising Club’s Pynchon Medal at an October 2021 event are two local residents. Elizabeth Wills-O’Gilvie is a longtime community activist for good nutrition and healthy eating, and a tireless advocate for Gardening the Community and the Springfield Food Policy Council, to name just a few initiatives she supports. Janine Fondon serves as co-founder of Unity First, a distributor of diversity-related e-news, chair of the undergraduate Communications department at Bay Path University, and a writer, communicator, and professor focused on amplifying the diverse voices throughout the Pioneer Valley and around the U.S. through inclusion and equity initiatives. This year’s recipients were chosen from a pool of nominations for the award received earlier this year by the Advertising Club. All nominees are researched by the trustees, who then deliberate before selecting final recipients. All Pynchon medalists are chosen by unanimous decision of the Pynchon trustees, who are the current and five past presidents of the Advertising Club. Pynchon trustees for 2020 are Jillian Gould, Teresa Utt, David Cecchi, Mary Shea, Scott Whitney, and current Advertising Club President Brenda McGiverin. The official presentation of the Pynchon Medal and celebration will take place in the fall of 2021 in concert with the following year’s recipients. When confirmed, event details and ticket information will be available at adclubwm.org or by calling (413) 342-0533.

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Jean Deliso

Jean Deliso

Jean Deliso, CFP has been named a member of the 2020 Chairman’s Council of New York Life. Members of the Chairman’s Council rank in the top 3% of New York Life’s sales force of more than 12,000 licensed agents in sales achievement. She has accomplished this level of achievement for nine consecutive years. Deliso has been a New York Life agent since 1995 and is associated with New York Life’s Connecticut Valley General Office in Windsor, Conn. She is a member of the Nautilus Group, an exclusive, advanced planning resource for estate-conservation and business-continuation strategies. She is president and owner of Deliso Financial and Insurance Services, a firm focusing on comprehensive financial strategies that help position clients for a solid financial future. She has worked in the financial field for more than 30 years, her first seven in public accounting and the balance working in the financial-services industry. Deliso has developed an expertise assisting business owners and individuals protecting and securing their and their family’s future. Her extensive experience has led to a focus in certain fields, such as cash and risk management, investment, retirement, and estate planning. She is fully committed to educating individuals regarding their finances and frequently conducts workshops advocating financial empowerment. She currently serves on and has held chairman of the board positions at Baystate Health Foundation and the Community Music School of Springfield. She is also a former board member of the YMCA of Greater Springfield and Pioneer Valley Refrigerated Warehouse, a former trustee of the Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts, and a former member of the Bay Path University advisory board.

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MassDevelopment announced that, after three years as president and CEO, Lauren Liss will step down from this position at the end of the calendar year. Housing and Economic Development Secretary Mike Kennealy, who serves as chairman of the board of directors of MassDevelopment, will lead the search for the next head of the state’s finance and development agency. Before taking the reins at MassDevelopment in 2017, Liss held leadership positions in both the private and public sectors, including commissioner of the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection and a partner in a Boston law firm. In fiscal year 2020, MassDevelopment financed or managed 341 projects, generating investment of more than $2.69 billion in the Massachusetts economy. These projects are estimated to create or support 10,871 jobs and build or preserve 1,787 housing units. As president and CEO, Liss expanded its work in gateway cities through an array of finance programs and real-estate services, such as the Transformative Development Initiative (TDI) and Commonwealth Places program, and oversaw tremendous growth at Devens, MassDevelpment’s iconic mixed-use redevelopment of the former Fort Devens. This year, under Liss’ leadership and in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, MassDevelopment pivoted programs and tools to support small businesses in some of the state’s hardest-hit communities and aid in economic recovery. These efforts helped to stabilize businesses in TDI districts and created crowdfunding opportunities for community partners to prepare public spaces and commercial districts to safely serve residents and visitors. MassDevelopment, the state’s finance and development agency, works with businesses, nonprofits, banks, and communities to stimulate economic growth across the Commonwealth.

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