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    1. Capturing the ‘Paragus Vibe’

      Explore BusinessWest (Oct 21 2014)

      Capturing the ‘Paragus Vibe’

      Sherwin Williams calls it “outrageous green.”  That’s the exceedingly bright, neon-like shade that has come to define the company now known as Paragus Strategic IT since it changed its name from Valley ComputerWorks and embarked on an aggressive branding initiative several years ago.  And there’s a lot of it at this technology-solutions company’s new headquarters facility on Route 9 in Hadley, which was unveiled at an elaborate launch last week. There’s also a somewhat softer, muted version seen on some interior walls, carpeting, and other places, as well as a host of other exotic colors, including ...

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    2. ACCGS to Host Speed-networking Breakfast on Nov. 5

      Explore BusinessWest (Oct 17 2014)

      ACCGS to Host Speed-networking Breakfast on Nov. 5

      The breakfast will take a wide departure from the salutes-and-speakers format of the traditional breakfasts and will provide attendees with a quick and entertaining opportunity to introduce themselves and pitch their company to the other attendees. The core concept to speed networking is the ‘elevator speech,’ a short summary of an individual, business, organization, product, or service — a summary that a person could deliver in the time span of a short elevator ride.

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      Mentions:   West Springfield   Springfield   Affiliated Chambers of Commerce of Greater Springfield

    3. It's All Relative

      Explore BusinessWest (Oct 10 2014)

      It's All Relative

      The center’s executive director, the colorful Ira Bryck, said the agency was founded through the inspiration of a number of professionals and business advisers, many of whom still serve as strategic partners, and was also part of a movement in the early and mid-’90s to establish university-based education programs for family businesses.  “It became clear to a lot of expert advisers that they needed a sort of safe-harbor environment to be able to talk with business owners about a lot of issues that they normally would not be able to talk with them about if they were just ...

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      Mentions:   Chicopee

    4. Eye-Opening Experiences

      Explore BusinessWest (Oct 8 2014)

      Eye-Opening Experiences

      The field trip was part of a program called The World Is Our Classroom Inc. (WIOC), and Executive Director Nora Burke Patton says it was founded on the principle that students learn best when they see classroom lessons reinforced in the real world.
      “It runs from fifth grade through high school, and by partnering with urban school systems, institutions of higher education, and businesses, WIOC not only reinforces classroom lessons, but also opens young minds to employment opportunities,” she said, adding that the program was launched in 2002 through a collaboration of area businesses and school systems, and has exposed ...

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      Mentions:   Westfield

    5. Community Spotlight: Williamstown

      Explore BusinessWest (Oct 7 2014)

      Community Spotlight: Williamstown

      Andy Hogeland, another selectman, was equally descriptive. “People can go to the farmer’s market for fresh produce and community conversation, then walk to see the Magna Carta exhibit at the Clark Art Institute, or attend the Bluegrass Festival in North Adams,” he said during an interview late last month.  And board Chair Ron Turbin isn’t shy about extolling the town’s virtues either, noting that its elementary school is a state-of-the-art green building, and the Massachusetts School Building Authority recently approved a feasibility study to renovate or rebuild Mount Greylock Regional High School, which serves Williamstown and Lanesborough.

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    6. GCC Wins Award for Excellence in Manufacturing Training

      Explore BusinessWest (Oct 6 2014)

      GCC Wins Award for Excellence in Manufacturing Training

      The Tooling U-SME Platinum Education Center (TUPEC) awards are presented to educational facilities that serve as models in the manufacturing industry when it comes to developing an outstanding learning culture. Schools are selected based on adoption of Tooling U-SME’s online training program and strong utilization rates of online training in a blended learning format. These six schools join 21 other past TUPEC awardees.

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      Mentions:   Greenfield Community College   Greenfield

    7. United Way Announces Resource Development Council Members

      Explore BusinessWest (Oct 6 2014)

      United Way Announces Resource Development Council Members

      The United Way of Pioneer Valley (UWPV) has announced the slate of volunteers who will serve on its 2014-15 Resource Development Council (RDC), the organization’s volunteer fund-raising arm. It is comprised of a group of volunteer community and business leaders who are committed to the mission of the UWPV. “This is a very exciting time for the United Way. Today’s United Way is immersed in 21st-century fundraising, 24-hour community impact, seven days a week,” said Steve Lowell, president of Monson Savings Bank and RDC Chair. “Contributions to the United Way have enabled them to impact our community in ...

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      Mentions:   Springfield

    8. Across the Generations

      Explore BusinessWest (Sep 29 2014)

      Across the Generations

      Rebecca Caplice laughed when asked whether Greenfield Savings Bank had seen growth of its online and mobile services among younger customers.  “You’d be surprised at the acceptance across the board,” said Caplice, the bank’s president. “My father is 87 years old, and he’s on Facebook and Twitter every day. It’s really not just young people asking for these things; we are all attached to those mobile devices. I can hardly remember what it was like when someone in a group of people had a question, and no one knew the answer. Now we just look it ...

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      Mentions:   Greenfield   Greenfield Savings Bank

    9. UMass Moves Up in Ranking of Public Universities

      Explore BusinessWest (Sep 25 2014)

      UMass Moves Up in Ranking of Public Universities

      UMass Amherst now ranks among the nation’s top 30 public universities, moving up 10 spots during the past year in the 2015 Best Colleges guide released recently by U.S. News & World Report. There are more than 600 public, four-year colleges in the country, and U.S. News ranks the top 122. The Commonwealth’s flagship campus, led by Chancellor Kumble Subbaswamy, earned its highest ranking ever in the prestigious national universities category. Since 2010, when UMass Amherst ranked 52nd among public schools, the university’s standing has steadily improved, reaching 40th last year before advancing to 30th for ...

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      Mentions:   University of Massachusetts   Amherst   Kumble Subbaswamy

    10. Community Spotlight: South Hadley | BusinessWest

      Explore BusinessWest (Sep 23 2014)

      Community Spotlight: South Hadley | BusinessWest

      Two years ago, South Hadley won a Communities by Design award from the American Institute of Architects, or AIA. In addition to the accolades, it earned town leaders a visit from a sustainable-design assessment team, which created a revitalization plan for the Falls section of town.  The committee that crafted the winning proposal is called the Rise of the Falls Facilitation Group, and part of its work involves implementing recommendations put forth in the report.  It has been updated with new ideas and adjustments, but the vision of a rebirth of the industrial neighborhood, which had fallen into a state ...

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    11. Big Picture | BusinessWest

      Explore BusinessWest (Sep 23 2014)

      Big Picture | BusinessWest

      There’s an art and science to marketing commercial real estate. In some cases, lots of art.  Take 1350 Main Street, or One Financial Plaza, in downtown Springfield, which was recently branded the MassLive Building after its newest tenant, which is leasing 11,000 square feet of space and paying for the right to emblazon the tower with its logo. MassLive is among several companies and colleges that have recently forged deals at 1350 Main, drawn by its location, its noteworthy art galleries (more on that later), and what Evan Plotkin describes as a palpable “vibe” at the site.

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      Mentions:   Springfield

    12. Berkshire Healthcare Communities Earn 20 National Awards | BusinessWest

      Explore BusinessWest (Sep 22 2014)

      Of the select few long-term-care and senior-living providers in Massachusetts recognized this year by National Research Corp. for exceptional customer and employee satisfaction, more than half of the Massachusetts winners are Berkshire Healthcare communities.  “We are very honored to award these exemplary locations of Berkshire Healthcare for their excellent quality of care, resident experiences, and staff engagement, as recognized by their customers and employees,” said Mary Oakes, vice president of Post-Acute at National Research. “Every day, Berkshire Healthcare is making a difference in the lives of residents and caregivers across all facets of the long-term-care and senior-living spectrum to ensure ...

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    13. Attain Therapy + Fitness Open for Business in Westfield

      Explore BusinessWest (Sep 19 2014)

      Attain Therapy + Fitness announced the hiring of Michael Fall, who will act as the facility manager and treating physical therapist at the recently acquired facility at 65 Springfield Road in Westfield.  Fall has been practicing orthopedic physical therapy for more than 30 years. He has owned, built, and subsequently sold two private practices in Connecticut. He earned a bachelor’s degree in physical therapy from Quinnipiac University in 1983, a master’s degree in orthopedic physical therapy in 1992, and his Ph.D. in biomechanics from the University of Connecticut in 2001. In 2013, he was accepted into the prestigious ...

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      Mentions:   Springfield   Westfield

    14. Caring Health Center to Be Named Richard E. Neal Complex

      Explore BusinessWest (Sep 19 2014)

      Caring Health Center to Be Named Richard E. Neal Complex

      Caring Health Center / Community Health Center (CHC), located at 1049 Main St., will be named the Richard E. Neal Complex at a dedication ceremony to be held on Monday, Sept. 22 at noon.  CHC was just beginning construction on its Main Street location when the building was ravaged by the June 2011 tornado, causing $1.2 million in damages. U.S. Rep. Richard Neal has been instrumental in guiding fund-raising efforts, securing federal appropriations and grants to help CHC complete the project. “Congressman Neal has completely dedicated himself to this cause,” said Tania Barber, president and CEO of Caring Health ...

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      Mentions:   Springfield   Congressman Richard E. Neal

    15. Scaling Up | BusinessWest

      Explore BusinessWest (Sep 12 2014)

      Scaling Up | BusinessWest

      Elizabeth Barajas-Román says there are a number of reasons why she actively pursued the position of CEO for the Women’s Fund of Western Massachusetts (WFWM).  For starters, there was the opportunity to work in an attractive, challenging position much closer to her home in Northampton — she had been “commuting” to the nation’s capital for her work with the Pew Charitable Trusts as a campaign manager. There was also the chance to continue what had become a career in what she calls “high-impact philanthropy” (much more on her working definition of that term later).

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      Mentions:   Daily Hampshire Gazette   Greenfield Community College   Northampton

    16. State Unveils One-stop Web Portal for Municipal Grants

      Explore BusinessWest (Sep 10 2014)

      State Unveils One-stop Web Portal for Municipal Grants

      Gov. Deval Patrick’s administration has unveiled a new web portal for cities and towns to easily identify grant opportunities that could benefit their communities. The Municipal Grant Finder (mass.gov/municipalgrants) is a one-stop web shop for local officials and residents to learn about grant opportunities across state government, regardless of which state agency manages a grant program. The web portal will highlight what resources exist and where to find them, as management of these grants and resources is decentralized among a multitude of state government agencies. The Municipal Grant Finder will help them navigate state government by succinctly ...

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      Mentions:   Governor Deval L. Patrick

    17. Community Spotlight: West Springfield

      Explore BusinessWest (Sep 9 2014)

      Community Spotlight: West Springfield

      Mayor Edward Sullivan says the city of West Springfield has changed its tactics toward economic development, and is moving forward “like a battleship,” which is a significant development.  “In the past, we moved like an aircraft carrier,” he said, meaning more deliberately. “But we are no longer sitting back on our heels. Instead, we have taken a proactive approach and are moving from a passive role to an active role. We’re doing a better job of marketing through our website and collaborations with regional agencies and commercial brokers. Nothing happens overnight, but we’ve laid the groundwork and put ...

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      Mentions:   University of Massachusetts   West Springfield   Springfield

    18. Women’s Professional Chamber Names Carol Campbell Woman of Year

      Explore BusinessWest (Sep 9 2014)

      Women’s Professional Chamber Names Carol Campbell Woman of Year

      The Professional Women’s Chamber, a division of the Affiliated Chambers of Commerce of Greater Springfield, recently honored Carol Campbell, president of Chicopee Industrial Contractors, as its 2014 Woman of the Year. The annual Woman of the Year Banquet was held at the Castle of Knights in Chicopee. The award is presented to a woman in the Greater Springfield area who exemplifies outstanding leadership, professional accomplishment, and service to the community.

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      Mentions:   West Springfield   Springfield   Chicopee

    19. Menck Windows Chairman to Keynote ACCGS Breakfast

      Explore BusinessWest (Sep 5 2014)

      Menck Windows Chairman to Keynote ACCGS Breakfast

      Menck Windows, a joint venture of Menck USA Inc. and Menck Fenster GmbH, of Hamburg, Germany, a 130-year-old, fourth-generation business that provides custom windows and doors in Europe, the Far East, and the U.S., recently opened the doors to its first U.S. manufacturing operation here in Western Mass.

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      Mentions:   Springfield   Affiliated Chambers of Commerce of Greater Springfield

    20. Dadanco Opens New Facility in Westfield | BusinessWest

      Explore BusinessWest (Sep 4 2014)

      Dadanco Opens New Facility in Westfield | BusinessWest

      Dadanco, a manufacturer of commercial hydronic-based heating and cooling products, including active chilled beams, induction units, and induction diffusers, announced the grand opening of its Luxton-Reed Center, with an open house to be held on Sept. 12, from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.  The Luxton-Reed Center is aptly named after two industry pioneers for heating and cooling technologies: professor Russell Luxton of Australia, the co-founder of Dadanco, and John Reed of Westfield, the founder of several hydronic heating companies, including Sterling Residential & Commercial Hydronics, which are divisions of Mestek Inc., the largest manufacturer of finned-tube baseboard radiation ...

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      Mentions:   Westfield

    21. PeoplesBank Offers Support to Women Business Owners

      Explore BusinessWest (Sep 2 2014)

      PeoplesBank Offers Support to Women Business Owners

      In support of the growth and success of women business owners, PeoplesBank is partnering with WomenUpFront to host a monthly, ongoing roundtable for women who have ownership and leadership responsibility and want to grow toward $1 million in annual revenue.

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      Mentions:   Holyoke

    22. Explosion of Potential

      Explore BusinessWest (Aug 29 2014)

      Explosion of Potential

      The good news, Hively noted, is that the innovation district has plenty going for it already, from the neighborhood’s pre-existing geographic assets to economic-development success stories such as the Baystate Innovation Center, a business accelerator that creates an anchor and partner for health technology startups; the entrepreneurial support system of entities like Valley Venture Mentors, Springfield Angels, and River Valley Investors; and Tech Foundry, which acts as a training ground for building career skills and filling job openings.

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      Mentions:   Springfield

    23. Advance Welding Relocates to Springfield

      Explore BusinessWest (Aug 27 2014)

      Advance Welding Relocates to Springfield

      After more than 36 years of doing business in West Springfield, Advance Welding will relocate to Brookdale Drive in Springfield on Sept. 2. “As our capabilities and customer base continue to grow, this move will improve our ability to process our customers’ work,” said Advance Welding President Christopher Kielb.

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      Mentions:   West Springfield   Springfield

    24. Filling the Gap | BusinessWest

      Explore BusinessWest (Aug 26 2014)

      Filling the Gap | BusinessWest

      Specifically, STCC’s associate-degree program in precision machining doubled in size last September from 40 to 80 students, thanks to a $2 million upgrade of the school’s Smith & Wesson Technology Applications Center. “We have all new CNC machines, computers, high-end computer workstations, and software. We also hired two new faculty members as well as technicians,” said STCC President Ira Rubenzahl, adding that there will be a total of about 250 students in non-credit and for-credit manufacturing-related programs this fall.

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      Mentions:   Springfield Technical Community College   Springfield

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