Departments People on the Move

People on the Move

The Women’s Fund of Western Massachusetts (WFWM) has named Elizabeth Barajas-Román the foundation’s new CEO. Barajas-Román has been a leader in progressive movements, including advocating at the national level for the health and rights of immigrant women and their families. Most recently, she was a manager at the Pew Charitable Trusts, where she directed a portfolio of partners that campaigned for state and federal policy change to improve government performance on issues that impact children’s health. Barajas-Román brings a background in impactful philanthropy, data-driven strategy design, fund-raising through philanthropic partnerships, and creating coalitions and mobilizing partners. “We are very excited to have Elizabeth as the new head of the Women’s Fund,” said Michelle Theroux, chair of the WFWM board of directors. “Her experience, nationally as well as locally, provides a unique perspective for the fund as we continue to grow and bring attention to the issues surrounding women, girls, and our community.” Previously, as the director of policy at the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health (NLIRH), Barajas-Román directed the organization’s Washington, D.C.-based office, where she was instrumental in expanding the visibility of NLIRH on the national stage. Barajas-Román was frequently invited to be a voice in national policy discussions in the media, at the White House, on Capitol Hill, and in target states. In addition, Barajas-Román’s leadership has been recognized by several national fellowships, including the Center for Progressive Leadership Executive Fellowship, the Rockwood Leadership Institute, and an appointment to the American Public Health Assoc. Committee on Women’s Rights. “I’m thrilled to be leading this dynamic public foundation at such an important time,” said Barajas-Román. “Women are at the center of every issue impacting families today: healthcare, equal pay and economic security, safety and freedom from violence. A Women’s Fund is able to highlight these issues, aggregate resources, and collaborate with existing community organizations to develop impactful, sustainable solutions.” Barajas-Román’s background also includes positions as a journalist, researcher, and director of policy and operations at a primary-care clinic for uninsured youth in Boston. She is a certified project-management professional, is a graduate of Oberlin College, and received her master’s degree in international policy from Harvard University.

The American Red Cross of Massachusetts announced the selection of Kim Goulette as the new Executive Director of the Pioneer Valley Chapter. With more than 20 years of experience in nonprofit administration, she succeeds Rick Lee, who retired on Aug. 6 after 30 years of service to the Red Cross. Goulette began her new role on Aug. 4. “I am thrilled to welcome Kim to the American Red Cross of Massachusetts,” said Ralph Boyd, Red Cross of Massachusetts CEO. “Kim is a successful administrator with a strong skill set in growth management, and I am confident that her steady leadership and excitement for the work of the Red Cross will effect a seamless transition and guarantee the continued success of the Pioneer Valley Chapter in delivering essential services to the community.” In her new position, Goulette will provide leadership to the local volunteers and paid employees who serve the residents of the Pioneer Valley with life-saving programs and services. “I’m honored to be selected for this key role with an amazing organization,” she said. “I look forward to working with the dedicated volunteers, employees, board members, community partners, and donors to strengthen our communities and help people in need.” Goulette most recently served as executive director of Lorraine’s Soup Kitchen and Pantry Inc. in Chicopee, where she managed day-to-day operations and worked with board members and committees to raise funds to support the work of the organization. Previously, she served as director of Employment and Community Based Day Services at Aditus in East Longmeadow, as well as regional director of the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Massachusetts. Goulette earned her bachelor’s degree from Franklin Pierce College in New Hampshire and serves as a Chicopee Rotarian, a member of the Chicopee Chamber of Commerce, and a board member and services committee chair at the Food Bank of Western Massachusetts.

Jeffrey LaValley was recently appointed Community Outreach Manager at Greater Springfield Habitat for Humanity. LaValley’s primary responsibility is the development and execution of strategies to increase awareness and financial support of the affiliate’s mission. LaValley will play a pivotal role in implanting the organization’s capacity-building efforts, specifically the 30 in 3 campaign, the affiliate’s vision to serve 30 families in three years. He also will oversee Habitat’s annual resource-development plan, including outreach efforts to foster a positive identity for the affiliate in the community. Most recently, LaValley served as executive director and director of sales and marketing for Shaker Farm Farms Country Club in Westfield. Previously, he served as associate director of donor relations for Shriners Hospital for Children in Springfield. Prior to that, he was the community-development coordinator at Noble Hospital in Westfield and director of alumni and parent relations at Keene State College in New Hampshire. LaValley received a bachelor’s degree in journalism/public affairs and a master of education in curriculum and instruction from Keene State College. He also earned a certificate in fund-raising from UMass Amherst.

Fallon Health, a nationally recognized healthcare-services organization, announced the appointment of B. John “Jack” Dill to its board of directors. Dill is President and CEO of Colebrook Realty Services Inc., a privately owned, full-service commercial real-estate firm headquartered in Springfield. Dill oversees commercial real-estate development, management, finance, brokerage, and consulting. Prior to this role, Dill was executive vice president of SIS Bancorp and SIS Bank (now TD Bank). Dill holds a Counselors of Real Estate designation and is a fellow of the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors. He is a founding director of the Massachusetts Housing Investment Corp. (MHIC), a nonprofit equity investor/financer of affordable housing, among other services. To date, MHIC has placed in excess of $1 billion in qualified developments. Dill is currently chairman of the Board of Springfield School Volunteers Inc., a member of Springfield Business Leaders for Education, and director of the Springfield Education Fund. Additionally, he is the current campaign chair of WFCR New England Public Radio’s 50th Anniversary Capital Campaign. Dill has held leadership roles on the boards of many organizations, including Baystate Health System and Baystate Medical Center, Mercy Medical Center, Counselors of Real Estate, Western Mass. Life Care Corp., WGBY public television, and American International College. An alumnus of Williams College, Dill pursued a P.M.D. at Harvard Business School and attended the School of Mortgage Banking at Northwestern University.

New England Promotional Marketing announced that former abc40 anchor Maggie Pereiras has joined its team. She will be contributing to the NEPM sales force and creating a cohesive social-media platform for the company while highlighting the success of its clients. Pereiras acquired her bachelor’s degree in communications with honors from Marist College in Poughkeepsie, N.Y. after graduating from Minnechaug Regional High School. She began her professional career as an editor for Avon Products Inc. and then Victoria’s Secret, both in New York City. Upon returning to Western Mass., she began working as an account executive for WGGB Channel 40/Fox 6. Shortly thereafter, she transitioned from advertising sales and became the host, executive producer, and editor for abc40’s local lifestyle program, SimplyLiving. The program allowed her to sharpen her creativity and build lasting relationships with many businesses throughout the area. Once SimplyLiving had run its course, she transitioned again to become a reporter and anchor for abc40’s news team. Pereiras has a strong background in creative marketing and social media.

Brian Kane, a professor and researcher at UMass Amherst, is this year’s co-recipient of the International Society of Arboriculture’s (ISA’s) prestigious Alex L. Shigo Award for Excellence in Arboricultural Education. The award honors ISA members for enhancing the quality and professionalism of arboriculture through education. Kane is the Mass. Arborists Assoc. professor of Commercial Arboriculture at UMass Amherst. He is an ISA-certified arborist who started climbing trees professionally 25 years ago. Kane invites his students to participate in his tree research, supports them in their tree-climbing competitions, and guides them to be skilled future workers and business owners in arboriculture. ISA honored Kane at a ceremony on Aug. 3 in Milwaukee as part of the 90th annual ISA International Conference and Trade Show.

Lathrop Communities recently announced the appointment of Mauria Sirum, RN, as the new director of Wellness and Home Care. Sirum is a graduate of Vermont Technical College and Excelsior College in Albany, N.Y., and has a broad range of healthcare experience, including supervision and leadership. Early in her career, Sirum served as a CNA at Berkshire Health Systems and worked as a staff nurse and nursing supervisor for the Sisters of Providence Health System. Just prior to joining the Lathrop team, she was director of nurses at Wingate Healthcare, where she oversaw the nursing department and memory-care neighborhood. She is devoted to transparency, communication, a person-centered wellness philosophy, preventive health education, and initiatives for residents and those who care for them, as well as staff development and team building. In her spare time, Sirum serves on the board of directors for Arena Civic Theater and works as a costumer for plays in her community. Lathrop is a not-for-profit affiliate of the Kendal Corp., and manages independent-living communities in Northampton and Easthampton, serving older adults in the Quaker tradition.