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    1. Bay Path College to feature Barbara Walters in 2014 Women's Leadership Conference

      Bay Path College to feature Barbara Walters in 2014 Women's Leadership Conference

      Barbara Walters will be this year's keynote speaker for the 2014 Women's Leadership Conference, "Own Your Story." "We are so excited to have Barbara Walters for this year's conference since she has made a career out of sharing people's stories," said Kathleen Wroblewski, the director of marketing and communications for Bay Path College. The annual conference draws thousands of women from across the Pioneer Valley. The conference has been a Bay Path tradition for 19 years. It will be held on April 25, from 7:30 to 4:30 p.m. at the MassMutual Center in ...

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    2. B & E Precision Aircraft Components looks to build staff, grow with industry

      B & E Precision Aircraft Components looks to build staff, grow with industry

      The machine shop, with its 103 employees, had a good 2013 and is looking for an even better years 2015 to 2020 as aircraft like those new jetliners go from design and testing to full production , according to company president Glenn Ford,. The precision machine shop is one division of the larger B & E Group which has offices in Westfield and Florida.  The machine shop is a maze of activity with robots placing parts on machine tools and people setting up the work and telling the robots what to do. Nearby are airplane parts, including a small bracket that breaks ...

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    3. Outlook 2014: Affiliated Chambers of Commerce of Greater Springfield president Jeff Ciuffreda sees 'year of growth' in 2014

      Outlook 2014: Affiliated Chambers of Commerce of Greater Springfield president Jeff Ciuffreda sees 'year of growth' in 2014

      The legislative committee of the Affiliated Chambers of Commerce of Greater Springfield studies various pieces of data when formulating its legislative policies and two of those pieces speak to our economy and employment.  One interesting piece of data is the monthly revenue report from the Massachusetts Department of Revenue. The other is the monthly data on employment and unemployment, broken down by state, county, and the city of Springfield.

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    4. Outlook 2014: Springfield company PSI 91 finds market for innovative basketballs, footballs with Under Armour

      Outlook 2014: Springfield company PSI 91 finds market for innovative basketballs, footballs with Under Armour

      Daniel Touhey and his partner, John Frank, knew an opportunity when they saw one.
      When their employer, Spalding Sports Worldwide, closed up its Chicopee location in 2009, Touhey and Frank decided to stay in Western Massachusetts and start their own company.  Since 2010, their company, PSI 91, has been located in the Business Growth Center, also known as the Scibelli Enterprise Center, at Springfield Technology Park.  PSI 91 began shipping its products – inflatable basketballs, volleyballs, soccer balls and footballs - exclusively for the Under Armour brand in 2011.

      “Under Armour is the fastest growing sports apparel business in the country,” Touhey ...

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    5. Williams Distributing in Chicopee branches out to craft beer

      Williams Distributing in Chicopee branches out to craft beer

      When Williams Distributing started operations three generations ago its mainstay was Budweiser.  Fast forward nearly 65 years and its mainstay is still Budweiser – specifically Bud Light, the most popular beer in the country – but there is also Sierra Nevada, Harp, Yuengling, and even products from the small Amherst Brewing Co. and the little-known Wormtown Brewing.

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    6. Springfield seeks to sell tax-foreclosed Bay Street industrial sites for new uses, jobs, revenue | masslive.com

      Springfield seeks to sell tax-foreclosed Bay Street industrial sites for new uses, jobs, revenue | masslive.com

      The properties, being sold as a package, include the former Cohen Bros. Metals Recycling facility at 846 Bay St. and the former Roy’s Towing Used Auto Parts at 876 Bay St.  Those properties include three buildings, and there is an adjacent large vacant lot on the north side of Tapley Street. All three are zoned for industrial use. There also is a small lot on the northwest side of Bay Street as part of the sale.  'It's rare that the city has this kind of acreage for industrial uses,' said Brian Connors, the city’s deputy director of ...

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    7. Speaker DeLeo will try to help Gateway Cities with new economic development bill

      Speaker DeLeo will try to help Gateway Cities with new economic development bill

      As speaker of the House of Representatives, Bob DeLeo gets to attend any number of ribbon cuttings in and around Boston. But there haven't been many to attend outside of the Boston metro area, in the state's post-industrial cities or in its rural regions.  It's why DeLeo is going to make helping out these so-called 'Gateway Cities' — the Lawrences, the Fall Rivers, the Springfields — an important part of an economic development bill that he'll be unveiling later in the spring.

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    8. Westover Metropolitan Development Corp. in Chicopee celebrates 40th anniversary

      Westover Metropolitan Development Corp. in Chicopee celebrates 40th anniversary

      This year marks the 40th anniversary of the creation of the Westover Metropolitan Development Corporation and its four industrial parks developed on land vacated by the military.  “The fear was we were going to lose all the economic spin-off that came from the 8,000 people who had lived there,” said Allan W. Blair, president of Westover Metropolitan Development Corporation.  In 1973 the military decided to convert Westover, built in 1939 as a Strategic Air Command Base, to the first free-standing Air Force Reserve base, said Master Sgt. Andrew Biscoe, public relations technician for Westover.

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    9. Pioneer Valley focuses on filling skills gap says Tim Brennan

      Pioneer Valley focuses on filling skills gap says Tim Brennan

      The results of a joint research project of the New England Public Policy Center of the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston and the Commonwealth Corporation were unveiled in 2012 at a public forum held at Holyoke Community College. The results, detailed in a data-rich final report, Labor Market Trends in the Pioneer Valley, paint an insightful yet sobering portrait of our region’s talent pipeline and point to workers who increasingly are not adequately equipped to fill current job openings. The problem boils down to a “skills gap” - a gap which the report forecasts will significantly widen over coming decades ...

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    10. Western Mass. manufacturing firms innovate and diversify to keep

      Western Mass. manufacturing firms innovate and diversify to keep

      Smaller than a pencil tip, the titanium set screw cradled in the palm of machinist David Ruest's hand is the most complicated part he makes. It's full, he said, of odd angles and bevels not to mention the tiny little Allen-wrench slot that goes at the tip. Even the ridges of the threads have to be shaped just so, or the screw won't fit into the equally tiny part where it serves to hold a slightly larger screw in place. He runs a computer-controlled machine tool at Detector Technology Inc. in Palmer, an expanding company that makes ...

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    11. Eastern States Exposition looks to its history, traditions in scoping out opportunities for growth

      Eastern States Exposition looks to its history, traditions in scoping out opportunities for growth

      According to Cassidy, the ESE is the biggest cultural event that takes place on the Eastern seaboard, hosting nearly 1.5 million people during the 17 days of the fair. In addition, throughout the year, they host nearly as many people at the many shows and events that take place on their grounds, including educational events at historic Storrowton Village, and events which are promoted by others – agricultural events, trade shows, and consumer shows – as well as hungry patrons at Storrowton Tavern and Carriage House.  Cassidy noted one of the biggest challenges facing the Eastern States Exposition is an aging ...

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    12. Mom-and-pop businesses need help to bolster economy

      Mom-and-pop businesses need help to bolster economy

      According to many federal, state and local assisted government programs, financial institutions and alternative loan and funding agencies, start-ups are considered having one year or two in business. In addition, a small business is considered a business with at least 100 employees and with annual receipts ranging up to $2.5 million.  The question is who or when did the definition for start-up change? And, when is $2.5 million a year considered a small business?

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    13. Auto dealerships retool operations to create a better buying experience

      Auto dealerships retool operations to create a better buying experience

      An auto dealer needs to move a lot of metal to make back a $13 million investment in two new dealership buildings, but Thomas M. Cosenzi and Carla J. Cosenzi, brother-and-sister owners of the Tommy Car Auto Group knows that new facilities are what it takes in today's competitive auto market.  Especially if those dealerships are next to other dealerships on Northampton's King Street, an area emerging as an auto mile with new Lia dealerships, the switch of Burke from GMC trucks to the more varied Chevrolet and the relocation a year ago of Ford of Northampton to ...

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    14. Western New England air travel options improving at Bradley

      Western New England air travel options improving at Bradley

      From Bradley International Airport in Connecticut to Worcester Regional Airport in Massachusetts, people who live, work or play in western New England have more options than ever when it comes to flying the friendly skies. In 2013, the regional airports saw a number of new direct flights making it easier for people to reach their destinations without traveling to New York or Boston's busy Logan International Airport. At Bradley, the largest commercial airport in the region, fliers can now embark on direct flights to Los Angeles, Fort Myers, Fla., and travel with new frequency to Atlanta and Tampa, Fla.

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    15. Open Square at the center of Holyoke's mill past and creative present

      Open Square at the center of Holyoke's mill past and creative present

      Owner John P. Aubin has sought to position Open Square as a space filled with 'creative vibe' tenants digitizing their way in work and play through the internet-dominated world from the comfort of their wood-floored and exposed-brick-wall lofts to a future eager for their innovations.  'Business is about creating your own opportunities. I think if you’re doing it right, you’re going to create opportunities for others as well. My business is designing and building places that people want to live, work and play in,' Aubin said.

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    16. Western Mass. rail travel expansion, Springfield Union Station project, on track for 2014

      Western Mass. rail travel expansion, Springfield Union Station project, on track for 2014

      The $83 million Union Station Intermodal Transportation and Rail Center renovations in Springfield have hit some snags that caused delays and will increase the total cost, said Kevin Kennedy, the city’s chief development officer.  He said, “Everything is moving along slowly but surely.” Kennedy said he does not have the total cost of the project now, but is working to establish the figure.  He said abatement problems, such as asbestos and other issues, turned out to be quite extensive both on the roof and inside the baggage building. Now plans are for the baggage building to start to come ...

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    17. VVM Awarded Mentoring Grant | Valley Venture Mentors

      VVM Awarded Mentoring Grant | Valley Venture Mentors

      We’re excited to share that Valley Venture Mentors was awarded nearly $150,000 this week to support and expand its mentorship program under the Massachusetts Innovation Mentoring Initiative. This highly competitive grant from the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative will increase the number of active start-ups VVM can serve, while providing us the resources to improve the quality of new enterprises and build out programs to support the innovation economy in the Pioneer Valley.

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    18. Putnam Academy principal says school is 'model for dynamic and

      Putnam Academy principal says school is 'model for dynamic and

      Putnam has established a network of support which ensures that rigorous college and career readiness standards are met and our students are prepared for post-secondary opportunities. This has brought about an increase in the number of Putnam graduates completing four-year college programs. It has also resulted in an increase of scholarships and opportunities for our graduates to acquire employment experience through our cooperative work program.

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      Mentions: Springfield
    19. Noble Express Care in Westfield fills healthcare void

      Noble Express Care in Westfield fills healthcare void

      Express Care, located at 57 Union St., provides care for non-life-threatening issues such as cold and flu, bumps and bruises, accidents and falls, severe sore throat or cough, headaches, ear infections, bleeding from cuts, minor trauma, rashes and other conditions. The idea for the facility was first conceived three years ago with one goal of addressing rising healthcare costs, said Noble Hospital Chief Executive Officer Ronald Bryant. The cost of a visit to Express Care is lower than a trip to the emergency room and the service is quicker.

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      Mentions: Westfield
    20. Small business seminar held in Springfield

      Small business seminar held in Springfield

      The Massachusetts Latino Chamber of Commerce started a training seminar to help ambitious people start and manage their own business. Carlos Gonzalez, President of the Mass. Latino Chamber of Commerce, told 22News, “With the unemployment crisis that continues to exist in our inner cities and communities of color, entrepreneurship is a good option.”

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    21. Stick Time Sports filling training void with budding Agawam facility

      Stick Time Sports filling training void with budding Agawam facility

      Sean Provost of Feeding Hills, Springfield’s Daryl deVillier and Sal Labella of Longmeadow enter their sixth month of operation as owners of Stick Time Sports in Agawam. All with a belief that training is everything, and that a local facility was long overdue. “I have always wanted to do a hockey training center, I just thought it was past due for our area,’’ Provost said. “There is a huge focus on games and a lot people are playing a lot more games than practicing.

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    22. Outlook 2014: Peter Pan Bus Lines invests in new bus fleet, grows Yo! Bus Chinatown service in 2014

      Outlook 2014: Peter Pan Bus Lines invests in new bus fleet, grows Yo! Bus Chinatown service in 2014

      Peter Pan has grown its BoltBus service since 2008; Bolt caters to passengers moving from city center to city center – from an outdoor bus stop in Boston, for instance, to another outdoor stop in Philadelphia.  Aside from expanding its operations generally up and down the East Coast and from Western Massachusetts east to Boston and Cape Cod, Peter Pan has had its eye on the lucrative Chinatown urban routes.  The Chinatown routes began with street-side pick-ups and grew in popularity along with demand. So-called rogue companies proliferated but substandard safety regulations prompted accidents, and forced those vehicles off the road ...

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    23. Mass Mentoring Partnership meets in Springfield

      Mass Mentoring Partnership meets in Springfield

      The breakfast networking event was designed to raise awareness of the youth mentoring movement in Western Massachusetts during National Mentoring Month, and to provide attendees with information on mentoring opportunities in the city. Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno, Western Massachusetts Economic Development Council Vice President and MMP Board Member Ann Burke, and United Way of Pioneer Valley Executive Director Dora Robinson were among the community leaders in attendance.

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