1. Articles from Joseph Bednar

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    1. Dodge Data & Analytics Sees Construction Starts Slipping in 2020

      Dodge Data & Analytics Sees Construction Starts Slipping in 2020

      Dodge Data & Analytics recently released its 2020 Dodge Construction Outlook, predicting that total U.S. construction starts will slip to $776 billion in 2020, a decline of 4% from the 2019 estimated level of activity. “The recovery in construction starts that began during 2010 in the aftermath of the Great Recession is coming to an end,” said Richard Branch, chief economist for Dodge Data & Analytics. “Easing economic growth driven by mounting trade tensions and lack of skilled labor will lead to a broad-based but orderly pullback in construction starts in 2020. After increasing 3% in 2018, construction starts dipped an ...

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    2. STCC’s Civil Engineering Technology Grads Entering Robust Field

      STCC’s Civil Engineering Technology Grads Entering Robust Field

      Civil engineers help design bridges, roads, and other critical infrastructure projects. In fact, “we make civilization possible,” Springfield Technical Community College (STCC) Assistant Professor Cynthia DeSellier tells her first-year students. “You turn on the water in your house — a civil engineer made that possible,” DeSellier added. “Engineering truly does make civilization possible. Without us, the standard of living we enjoy wouldn’t be there.”

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    3. Top Entrepreneur 2019

      Top Entrepreneur 2019

      As the largest private landowner in Massachusetts, with properties in 30 towns, the Cowls family is especially synonymous with North Amherst, where it has made its headquarters — and an enduring legacy in lumber and conservation — for 279 years. These days, Cinda Jones, the ninth-generation president of W.D. Cowls Inc., and her team are doing nothing short of creating a new town center in North Amherst. Why? Because the family has always transformed the land into what was most beneficial and needed. Today, she says, that’s a sense of community.

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      Mentions: Amherst
    4. Springfield College to Welcome Courts for Kids President Derek Nesland on Jan. 28

      Springfield College to Welcome Courts for Kids President Derek Nesland on Jan. 28

      Springfield College will welcome Courts for Kids President Derek Nesland to the campus on Tuesday, Jan. 28 at 7:30 p.m. in the Fuller Arts Center. Nesland’s presentation, titled “Who Says There’s No Traveling in Basketball? Community Development Through Court Building Around the Globe,” will highlight the service-to-humanity mission provided by Courts for Kids, a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization that helps build multi-sport courts in economically disadvantaged areas throughout the world. Nesland’s presentation is part of the 2019-20 Humanics Triathlon project led by Distinguished Springfield Professor of Humanics Judy Van Raalte.

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    5. Singer Traciana Graves to Speak at Bay Path for Black History Month Event

      Singer Traciana Graves to Speak at Bay Path for Black History Month Event

      Although she’s known for her vocal work with artists like Celine Dion and Steel Pulse, these days vocalist, strategist, and speaker Traciana Graves is using her voice to deliver an even more powerful message — one of inclusivity. She believes people have the ability to change the world with the power of their voice, and she’ll bring that inspirational message to Bay Path University as the keynote speaker for its Black History Month celebration on Wednesday, Feb. 5.

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    6. Report Details Region’s Workforce Needs — and How to Meet Them

      Report Details Region’s Workforce Needs — and How to Meet Them

      Healthcare. Education. Advanced manufacturing. In any conversation about the economic character of the Pioneer Valley — both its rich past and promising future — those three sectors would be high on the list of key factors. Indeed, a late-2018 report produced by the MassHire Hampden County Workforce Board and the MassHire Franklin Hampshire Workforce Board calls them ‘priority industries,’ meaning the most important to the region’s economic success, and they form the basis of a comprehensive ‘labor-market blueprint’ which aims to narrow workforce talent gaps and help companies — and the overall economy — grow.

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    7. Pump-station Project Brings Innovation to Springfield’s Riverfront - BusinessWest

      Pump-station Project Brings Innovation to Springfield’s Riverfront - BusinessWest

      he wastewater pump station at Springfield’s riverfront has done its job for more than 80 years, but it’s nearing the end of its useful life and lacks the capacity to keep up with the region’s growth — which threatens the cleanliness of the Connecticut River itself. That’s why the Springfield Water & Commission has launched a $115 million project to build a new station and three new pipelines across the river — a project that comes with some intriguing challenges and equally innovative solutions, including something called microtunneling.

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      Mentions: Springfield
    8. Ware Strives to Build Vibrancy — and a Brand - BusinessWest

      Ware Strives to Build Vibrancy — and a Brand - BusinessWest

      ‘Somewhere worth seeing.’  This is the tagline that’s been attached to a visioning, branding, wayfinding, and business-development plan for the town of Ware, an ambitious document that has elements ranging from a community vision to a branding strategy to new signage that will direct locals and visitors alike to various civic, cultural, and recreational destinations within the community.

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    9. As It Marks 25 Years, Bright Nights Displays Power of Collaboration

      As It Marks 25 Years, Bright Nights Displays Power of Collaboration

      Judy Matt had been tracking the results daily, almost hourly, and then … she couldn’t any longer. So, she’ll have to wait, like everyone else, to see how Bright Nights at Forest Park fares in this year’s USA Today competition to determine the top 10 holiday lighting shows in the country. When she was last able to check the tabulations before the magazine stopped running a count — presumably to build suspense for the Dec. 13 announcement regarding this and some other contests — Matt noted that Bright Nights was running fourth, behind such vaunted displays as the Legendary Lights ...

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    10. Dawn Creighton Wants to Be a Connector and Program Builder

      Dawn Creighton Wants to Be a Connector and Program Builder

      During her decade-long tenure as regional director for Associated Industries of Massachusetts (AIM), Dawn Creighton’s role was basically to support member businesses in the 413. “I went out and met with member companies, with their executive directors, and they would tell me what their biggest business challenges are, and I would try to find them a solution,” she told BusinessWest. “Sure enough, every single one of them said, ‘Dawn, if you could get me the bodies, I could double my workforce.’ No matter what the industry was, I’d meet with the HR person, and she’d say, ‘oh ...

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    11. Dress for Success Helps Women Boost Their Confidence in the Workplace

      Dress for Success Helps Women Boost Their Confidence in the Workplace

      Applying for jobs can be a daunting task, especially if one does not have the right tools or preparation to nail the interview. Dress for Success, an international not-for-profit organization, is working toward helping low- to middle-income women achieve economic independence by boosting confidence and providing valuable skills, a network of support, and the right suit to get the job done — literally.

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    12. Wilbraham Looks to Revive Key Parts of Town - BusinessWest

      Wilbraham Looks to Revive Key Parts of Town - BusinessWest

      Revival by its very definition suggests an improvement in the condition or strength of something. It means giving new life to what already exists, an upgrade of sorts.  This is what elected officials in Wilbraham plan to do in several places around town, for a number of reasons.  One of the most valuable assets the town of Wilbraham has to offer both residents and visitors is the array of businesses and attractions on Route 20, and Jeff Smith says that artery is getting a serious upgrade.

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      Mentions: Palmer Ludlow Mills
    13. Colony Hills Capital Purchases Windfield Senior Estates, Windfield Family Estates

      Colony Hills Capital Purchases Windfield Senior Estates, Windfield Family Estates

      Colony Hills Capital (CHC), based in Wilbraham, announced it recently purchased Windfield Senior Estates and Windfield Family Estates, a combined 160-unit multi-family apartment community located in nearby Hadley. It was purchased for $14,035,000 on Oct. 23. Built in 2002, the property consists of 80 independent senior apartments and 80  family apartments. The property was originally developed and financed using the LIHTC (Low Income Housing Tax Credit) program and currently has income and rent restrictions on 80% of the units. The community is located just off Route 9 in close proximity to UMass Amherst. It is also within a ...

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    14. Springfield’s Educare Facility Is State-of-the-art in Every Respect

      Springfield’s Educare Facility Is State-of-the-art in Every Respect

      Nikki Burnett says Springfield’s Old Hill neighborhood and those surrounding it certainly need the gleaming new $14 million Educare facility constructed next door to the Elias Brookings Elementary School on Walnut Street. More to the point, though, she told BusinessWest, they deserve this facility, which can only be described with that phrase state-of-the-art when it comes to everything from its programs to its play areas to its bathrooms.

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    15. Unify Against Bullying Presents Fifth Annual All-inclusive Fashion Show

      Unify Against Bullying Presents Fifth Annual All-inclusive Fashion Show

      On Oct. 21, students from 20 different schools in Massachusetts walked the runway and acted out anti-bullying performances at a fashion show dedicated to celebrating diversity. The show was attended by 500 guests at the Log Cabin in Holyoke. “This fashion show has far surpassed anything we ever initially imagined possible,” said Edward Zemba, president of Robert Charles Photography and founder and chair of Unify Against Bullying. “What makes the show special is that we celebrate students of all shapes, sizes, styles, sexual orientation, ethnicity, and physical ability. We make sure that kids know it’s who they are that ...

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      Mentions: Holyoke
    16. Azaya Evolves into a One-stop IT Solutions Company

      Azaya Evolves into a One-stop IT Solutions Company

      While growing his business and keeping his employees busy at all times is Jitu Changela’s primary goal, his mission in business is to keep his clients’ employees busy and help those companies grow. He and his team at the IT solutions company Azaya believe this is one of the best ways to measure success in this highly competitive, still-evolving field. Indeed, companies can’t grow and prosper, and their employees can’t be highly productive, if their IT systems are down. Or if the equipment is old and obsolete. Or if a business isn’t making the most of ...

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    17. Whalley Computer Associates Marks 40 Years of Growth

      Whalley Computer Associates Marks 40 Years of Growth

      From its humble beginnings in a Southwick basement 40 years ago, Whalley Computer Associates has become a technology company with remarkable reach, providing a host of services to more than 3,000 business clients, ranking WCA in the top one-tenth of 1% of all computer resellers by sales volume. That growth has come through constant evolution in response to industry needs and trends, but also simply by making life easier for clients, who increasingly demand no-fuss solutions to their network needs.

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    18. Tricia Canavan

      Tricia Canavan

      Tricia Canavan spent much of her early career as an educator. Today, in a much different role, education is never far from her mind. “As I’ve done this job for the last eight years, I’ve learned how education is tied to workforce development and people being successful. It’s not just about being able to write well or have the fundamentals of math — can you support yourself?”

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    19. New Members, Chair Named to STCC Board of Trustees

      New Members, Chair Named to STCC Board of Trustees

      The Springfield Technical Community College board of trustees recently welcomed two new members and a new chair, Mary Catherine “Marikate” Murren. The new members are Jynai McDonald, who was appointed by Gov. Charlie Baker in June, and Yanira Aviles, who was elected by the student body in April. Baker named Murren as chair of the board over the summer. She replaces Christopher Johnson, whose term recently expired. He had served as a trustee since 2006. Murren has served as a trustee for more than two years. She is vice president of Human Resources for MGM Springfield and graduated from the ...

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    20. Amherst Area Chamber to Hold After 5 Event Tonight in Hadley

      Amherst Area Chamber to Hold After 5 Event Tonight in Hadley

      AMHERST — The Amherst Area Chamber of Commerce will hold its October After 5 today, Oct. 9, from 5 to 7 p.m. at UMassFive College Federal Credit Union, 200 Westgate Dr., Hadley. The event — which is sponsored and hosted by the UMassFive Commercial Services Division and catered by Log Rolling Catering — will feature live music, food, a cash bar, door prizes, and networking, as well as visits from UMass Men’s Basketball Head Coach Matt McCall and UMass Women’s Basketball Assistant Coach Lynne-Ann Kokoski.

       

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    21. Bay Path Receives $5 Million Bequest, Largest in University’s History

      Bay Path Receives $5 Million Bequest, Largest in University’s History

      Allison Gearing-Kalill, vice president for Development and Planned Giving at Bay Path University, announced that an anonymous donor has made a transformational gift of $5 million through planned giving. The bequest is the largest individual contribution to Bay Path in its history, and honors the donor’s unwavering commitment to the education and advancement of women. Under the terms of the bequest, a fund will be established to support scholarships, endowed faculty chairs, science and technology equipment, and development programs.

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    22. Following $1.1 Million Restoration, Berkshire Theatre Group to Open Thaddeus Clapp House

      Following $1.1 Million Restoration, Berkshire Theatre Group to Open Thaddeus Clapp House

      Following a $1.1 million restoration, Berkshire Theatre Group (BTG) will celebrate the opening of the Thaddeus Clapp House at 74 Wendell Ave., Pittsfield, on Thursday, Oct. 17 from 5 to 7 p.m. This celebration follows a record-breaking summer theater season, with ticket sales up 25% and an additional 5,000 patrons recorded over the 2018 season. In 2013, BTG bought the Thaddeus Clapp House to serve as actor housing, and now, BTG celebrates the realization of that goal and more. Major funding for the restoration of the Thaddeus Clapp House has been provided by the Massachusetts Cultural Facilities ...

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