A respected healthcare professional with more than 30 years of clinical leadership, Frank Cracolici, has been named interim president of Baystate Medical Center. Meanwhile, Joanne Miller, who has more than 30 years of hospital-operations experience, has been named interim chief Nursing officer (CNO). Cracolici has an extensive background in leading hospitals and most recently served as senior advisor to the CEO of Morton Hospital, a member facility within the Steward Health Care System, a $7 billion system comprised of 36 hospitals with more than 40,000 employees. He was responsible for the day-to-day operations for the 125-bed hospital located in Central Mass., which includes 440 physicians and 730 associates, an active Emergency Department with more than 45,000 visits per year, 5,500 inpatient discharges, and an operating budget of $125 million. Previously, Cracolici was president and CEO of St. Vincent Medical Center, part of Verity Health System, in Los Angeles, where he was responsible for all strategy, hospital operations, and ambulatory services for the 366-bed hospital. He has also held leadership roles as executive vice president and chief operating officer, and then president and CEO, at St. Luke’s-Roosevelt Hospital Center in New York City, where he was responsible for the oversight of 1,000 inpatient beds and strategic planning for all clinical and operational departments of the dual campus hospital center and level 1 trauma center. Cracolici is a Johnson & Johnson fellow from the Wharton Business School at the University of Pennsylvania and has a master of professional studies degree in health services administration and a bachelor’s degree in business and health services administration from the New School for Social Research in New York City. He earned his diploma of nursing at Englewood Hospital and Medical Center School of Nursing in Englewood, N.J. For 19 years, Miller served as senior vice president, Patient Care Services; vice president, Surgical Services; chief Nursing officer, and interim CEO in both major academic health systems and community-based hospitals. Most recently, she served as CNO/vice president at Carson Tahoe Health in Carson, Nev., and interim CEO/CNO at Jupiter Medical Center in Jupiter, Fla. She was also CNO/vice president, Patient Care Services at Johns Hopkins Medicine/Sibley Memorial Hospital in Washington, D.C. In this capacity, she led the development, implementation and evaluation of nursing-practice and patient-care standards across the acute-care hospital, ambulatory sites, and its skilled-nursing and assisted-living facilities. She held system nursing leadership roles to foster collaboration and promote peer learning to improve quality and the patient experience. Miller holds a doctorate in executive nursing practice from Drexel University, a master’s degree in nursing administration from the University of Hartford, and a bachelor’s degree in nursing from Mount Saint Mary College. She is a Malcolm Baldridge executive fellow.
Melanson announced the admittance of its newest principal, Duy Nguyen. The accounting firm also announced the promotion of Christopher Hill to chief financial officer. Nguyen works in the Commercial Tax Department at Melanson and has been with the firm since 2014. He is a certified public accountant licensed in New Hampshire and practices out of the firm’s Merrimack office. Since joining Melanson, his focus has been on foreign taxation, multi-state taxation, and venture-capital taxation. His previous experience includes managing tax departments for multi-national corporations. He received a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Bryant College. He holds memberships in the New Hampshire Society of Certified Public Accountants and the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants. Hill has been Melanson’s controller since 2013. Since joining the firm, he has managed its accounting and budgeting, facilities, administrative staff, licensing and compliance, software systems, and other special projects. He received an MBA from Southern New Hampshire University and a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Franklin Pierce University.
In recognition of her six years of success and awarding-winning accomplishments as a video producer, Garvey Communication Associates Inc. (GCAi) announced Darcy Young’s promotion to director of Digital Public Relations. According to President John Garvey, GCAi’s brand-journalism process is built upon the company’s digital-marketing expertise and recognizes the increased responsibility of public-relations professionals to produce relevant content for both media and consumers. To that end, both media and digital audiences have an insatiable appetite for short-form video, something in which Young is accomplished. She will continue to supervise all digital PR content production as well as the technical teams that work on such efforts. Her work will be continued to be supported by GCAi’s production team, as well as a new digital PR analyst who will join the company in August. Young is a former assignment desk editor, field producer, and production assistant for both ABC and FOX local news affiliates. She is a cum laude graduate of Westfield State University, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in communications with a concentration in journalism. She won an Ad Club award for her production of “The Innovation Series,” a video series that highlighted the success paths of Valley Venture Mentors startups and the entrepreneurs who founded them.
Freedom Credit Union announced it has appointed Kriste Joy as branch officer of its two Franklin County branches in Greenfield and Turners Falls. She started her career at Four Rivers Federal Credit Union in 2003 and became part of the Freedom Credit Union family through a merger in 2005. A short time later, she assumed responsibility for managing the former Four Rivers branch offices in Turners Falls and South Deerfield, doing so until the South Deerfield location closed and a new, full-service branch opened in Greenfield in 2009. Well-known in Franklin County, Joy has developed active relationships with local schools and formed several partnerships for financial-literacy and school banking programs, as well as strong ties with many local businesses and members. She also holds active roles in many local nonprofit organizations, including DIAL/SELF Youth and Community Services, the Greenfield Education Foundation, the Greenfield Business Assoc., and the YMCA, just to name a few.
The Markens Group (TMG) recently announced the addition of the New England Financial Marketing Assoc. (NEFMA) to its comprehensive list of clients and expanded its team by hiring three new employees. The Markens Group, an association-management company located in Springfield, now has a 15-person staff that serves clients ranging from local societies and membership organizations to national not-for-profits. Its new client, NEFMA, based in Massachusetts, provides personal- and professional-development opportunities to financial marketers through educational meetings and networking opportunities. New TMG staff members include Michelle Everard, who serves as director of programs and events; Brandy Swanson, who serves as an accountant; and Lauren Martin, who serves as communications manager. The Markens Group’s community-first approach to business is driven by its inclusive team and client collaboration that fosters brighter communities and deeper engagement.
UMass Amherst’s Jim Kurose, distinguished university professor in the College of Information and Computer Sciences and associate chancellor for Partnerships and Innovation, is part of the research team recently awarded a $20 million National Science Foundation (NSF) grant to build the internet of the future. The grant, which will support the AI Institute for Future Edge Networks and Distributed Intelligence (AI-EDGE), is led by Ness Shroff, professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering and Computer Science and Engineering at Ohio State University. The funding supports a core team of 30 scientists from 11 collaborating educational institutions, three U.S. Department of Defense labs, and four global software companies. AI-EDGE is one of 11 new, NSF-funded Artificial Intelligence Research Institutes, and its ultimate goal is to design future generations of wireless edge networks that are highly efficient, reliable, robust, and secure, and facilitate solving long-standing distributed AI challenges.
Market Mentors, the region’s largest marketing, advertising, and public-relations agency, announced the addition of a director of Agency Operations, Pam Soisson, a 30-year marketing veteran. This new position was created to provide guidance and day-to-day oversight as the agency grows. “Pam brings a wealth of experience to this role,” company President Michelle Abdow said. “We are thrilled that she agreed to join our team and has already made a strong impact. She’s extremely methodical, seeking order and ways to improve efficiencies in process and procedures. This mindset, paired with leadership experience, makes her an especially effective member of our management team.” Soisson most recently served as vice president of Marketing Strategy for Rebel Interactive Group in Southington, Conn. At Market Mentors, she is responsible for the development and success of both the agency’s team members and the agency itself.
Leadership Pioneer Valley (LPV) recently welcomed LaTonia Naylor of Springfield College and Gregory Thomas of UMass Amherst to its board of directors. Naylor is a dedicated Springfield native and LPV class of 2016 alumna who has been serving the region for years through her work at nonprofit organizations and the Springfield School Committee, where she serves as an elected member. Thomas, director of the Berthiaume Center for Entrepreneurship Management at UMass, has demonstrated exceptional leadership in positions across corporate America in both advising and coaching leaders and entrepreneurs. The board also elected its officers, including Annamarie Golden of Baystate Health as chair, Tony Maroulis of W.D. Cowls as vice chair, Calvin Hill of Springfield College as clerk, Callie Niezgoda of Common Capital as treasurer, and Russell Peotter, retired from WGBY, as immediate past chair.
Monson Savings Bank announced the election of five new corporators. Stefan Davis is president and CEO of I Found a Light Against All Odds, a Springfield-based nonprofit that works with at-risk youth to address social, emotional, and economic issues they may be facing. He is also an educator in the Springfield public school system. Brendan Greeley is president of R.J. Greeley Co. Inc., a real-estate firm located in Springfield that specializes in commercial and industrial real estate. He is also the vice president of the board of directors for the East Longmeadow Educational Endowment Fund. Erica Nunley is a Realtor leading the Nunley Group at Keller Williams Realty. She is also a member of the Greater Hartford Board of Realtors, the National Assoc. of Realtors, the Massachusetts Assoc. of Realtors, and the Massachusetts Landlord Assoc. Rebecca Smith is a Realtor on the Neilsen Team at Keller Williams Realty. In 2012, she was named a KW Cultural Icon for her dedication to giving, knowledge, kindness, and service to others. She is a member of the Board of Realtors, co-founder of Massachusetts Ride for the Ribbon, and a licensed horseback-riding instructor. James White is president of Go Graphix, an East Longmeadow business that specializes in architectural graphics, signs and films, vehicle wraps, and more. He sits on various committees and boards, contributing to the East of the River Five Town Chamber of Commerce, East Longmeadow Bike Path, Springfield Performing Arts Development Corp., and LPVEC CareerTech & Putnam Vocational School advisory committees.
Martin Luther King Jr. Family Services Inc. (MLKFS) appointed Zaida Govan as vice president of Youth Services. She will direct all educational programming, including after-school, summer, and college-readiness programs. She is a licensed clinical social worker and an accomplished community organizer who has worked with the Mason Square Health Task Force and its Drug Free Communities efforts. Her community work also includes serving as a board member of Wellspring Cooperative Corp. and Wellspring Harvest Greenhouse, as well as a board member of the League of Women Voters of Northampton. She is president of the Indian Orchard Citizens Council and president of the Springfield Community Land Trust, whose mission is to bring permanent, affordable housing to Hampden County. She also started community-garden efforts in both the Indian Orchard and Mason Square neighborhoods. Govan attended the University of South Carolina in Columbia and holds undergraduate and graduate degrees from Springfield College, including a master’s degree in social work and human services.
Karen Wallace has joined Associated Industries of Massachusetts (AIM) as executive vice president of Marketing. She will develop and lead strategies to support expansion of the association and implement AIM’s belief that business can be a positive force for change in creating a better, more prosperous Commonwealth. A native of Springfield, Wallace was most recently a consultant to Northeastern University Khoury College of Computer Sciences, the Northeastern University College of Professional Studies, and the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. She previously spent more than 20 years in marketing positions at Fidelity Investments, including as senior vice president of Marketing, Communications, and Branding. She has also held senior marketing positions at MFS Investment Management and Sun Life. She earned both a bachelor’s degree and an MBA from Simmons University in Boston. She has completed professional-development courses at MIT Sloan School, Harvard Business School, and Tuck School at Dartmouth College. She serves as a board member for the Boston Children’s Chorus and is a member of the National Black MBA Assoc. and Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc.
Western New England University (WNEU) announced the recipients of the 2021 PeoplesBank Award. The award, first given in 2020, is made possible by a grant to WNEU from PeoplesBank to advance innovation and entrepreneurship across the university and the entire Pioneer Valley ecosystem. This year, the award went to Jeremy Bowler, a computer engineering major, for his work on an electronically controlled, continuously variable transmission (ECVT) for small-engine applications; Tytianie Brown, a sciences major, who runs a full-service beauty-services business; Caleb Miller, a mechanical engineering major and the co-founder of Woodside Getaways, an RV rental startup; Dante Talamini, an engineering major and team leader for Frost Alert, a wearable smart device that monitors skin temperature and alerts the wearer if they are beginning to experience frostbite; Ethan Valdes, an entrepreneurship major with a minor in health sciences, who co-founded Bus Boiz, a social-media experience startup that captures travel experiences; and Shemika White, an MBA graduate student and founder of Notes of Beauty chemical-free beauty products. Western New England University aspires to develop students’ entrepreneurial mindset with its innovation and entrepreneurial programs. Through co-curricular efforts, such as Startup Weekend and the Product Development and Innovation course, students are able to create innovations that have market potential.
Westfield State University (WSU) interim Dean of Faculty Enrique Morales-Díaz is the recipient of the Latino Scholarship Fund (LSF) of Western Massachusetts’ Antonia Pantoja Award, which honors people who contribute to the Latinx community through research and education. It was presented in June, during the organization’s 30th annual awards ceremony, held virtually. The Latino Scholarship Fund of Western Massachusetts is a nonprofit organization dedicated to putting higher education within reach of college-bound students in the region. Morales-Díaz leads Westfield State’s initiative to become a federally recognized Hispanic-serving institution (HSI) and chairs the University’s Racial Equity and Justice Institute Team. The HSI designation is part of a larger commitment by Westfield State to address systemic racism and inequities on campus, such as in its policies and practices. It also supports its efforts to become a student-ready, relationship-centered campus community that is fluent in understanding all of its students’ needs and that values their culture. An activist for the Puerto Rican community in New York City, Pantoja is best known for establishing ASPIRA in 1961, a nonprofit organization that promotes education and advancement for Puerto Rican youth by providing clubs within schools, career and college counseling, advocacy for bilingual education, and other services.
Excel Dryer Inc., manufacturer of the XLERATOR hand dryer, recently welcomed a new director of global sales to its team. Tammy Stone joins Excel Dryer with more than a decade of experience and a worldly expertise unlike many in her field. Born in the Republic of Georgia, Stone moved to the U.S. as a teenager. A graduate of Carl von Ossietzky University in Germany, Tbilisi State University in Georgia, and the University of Illinois College of Law, she holds degrees in business and political science. In previous positions, she grew national and international sales, developed business-strategy plans, and led a team of employees focused on business-to-business activities. In her role at Excel Dryer, Stone will be responsible for managing and providing business-strategy plans for all business-to-business interactions, negotiating transactions, and working to increase domestic and international market share and build sales activity.