Making News in Business, Feb. 24

  • Lynmarie Thompson

  • Tricia Serio

  • Rae Brown

  • PWKitchell—Kitchell_Fine_Art

Published: 2/23/2022 4:13:49 PM
Modified: 2/23/2022 4:13:26 PM
Surgeon joins Cooley Dickinson Surgical Care

NORTHAMPTON — Dr. Ursula McMillian has joined Cooley Dickinson Medical Group’s General Surgical Care practice at 15 Atwood Drive.

McMillian’s arrival brings new surgical services to Cooley Dickinson and helps to offset the recent departure of longtime general surgeon Dr. Alvah Hinckley, who retired in 2021. McMillian joins the practice’s current roster of surgeons that includes Dr. Michelle Helms, Dr. Holly Michaelson, Cooley Dickinson’s chief of surgery, and Casey Fowler, an acute care nurse practitioner.

McMillian is a graduate of the University of Connecticut School of Medicine in Storrs, Connecticut, where she also earned her bachelor’s degree in physiology and neurobiology. Her general surgical internship was completed at the University of Massachusetts Worcester, and she completed residency at Yale New Haven Hospital of Saint Raphael in New Haven, Connecticut. She earned a minimally invasive and bariatric surgical fellowship at Danbury Hospital in Danbury, Connecticut, and is a credentialed robotic surgeon after completing a program at Mercy Medical Center in Springfield, where she worked as a surgeon from 2013-2018.

Board certified by the American Board of Surgery, McMillian comes to Cooley Dickinson from Holyoke Medical Center, where she worked for the last three years.

HCC launching free manufacturing training program

HOLYOKE — Holyoke Community College is launching a free training program for individuals who want to get started in the manufacturing industry.

HCC’s free Introduction to Manufacturing Techniques program begins Monday, Feb. 28, with options for both morning and afternoon sessions over two or three weeks. Group 1 classes meet Monday through Thursday from 9 a.m. to noon until March 10; Group 2 meets Monday through Thursday from 1 to 3 p.m. until March 17.

All classes meet in person at HCC’s downtown location, the Picknelly Adult & Family Education Center (PAFEC) at 206 Maple St., Holyoke. A second round of two- and three-week classes (Groups 3 and 4) begins March 28.

The program, designed in collaboration with area businesses, will provide entry-level knowledge and skills for employment in the manufacturing sector in the Holyoke area. Classes are geared for students already employed by area companies or those looking to gain entry into the industry.

The course will cover general manufacturing processes and principles, math skills for manufacturing, problem-solving strategies, quality control standards such as Lean and ISO 9000, and career expectations and professional behavior.

Participants will also be connected to area employers and receive job placement assistance through HCC and MassHire Holyoke.

For more information or to sign up, contact Paul Sheehan at, or fill out the inquiry form online at

Amherst native promoted by sports development firm

SAN DIEGO — Amherst native Nino Vanin has been named vice president sponsorship sales, Northeast, at JMI Sports, a media rights and venue development company.

Vanin expanded his role as the property leader on JMI Sports’ University of Pennsylvania multimedia rights property to include managing partnerships with Harvard Athletics, Columbia Athletics and The Armory. Vanin joined JMI Sports in 2018 and is a 20-year veteran of the sports industry with a track record of successful collegiate partnerships in the Philadelphia and Northeast markets. Based in Philadelphia, Vanin is a graduate of Johns Hopkins University and holds a master’s degree in sports management from the University of Massachusetts.

UMass profs elected fellows to scientific institution

AMHERST — The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the world’s largest general scientific society and publisher of the Science family of journals, has elected two professors from the University of Massachusetts Amherst to the newest class of AAAS Fellows, among the most prestigious honors bestowed by the scientific community.

Tricia Serio, associate chancellor for strategic academic planning, dean of the College of Natural Sciences and professor in the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, and Lynmarie Thompson, director of the Chemistry-Biology Interface Program and professor in the Department of Chemistry, will join 562 other scientists, engineers and innovators from 24 scientific disciplines in this year’s class of AAAS Fellows.

Serio’s research is focused on a particular set of cellular proteins, called “prions,” that can change their shape. When their shape changes, so does their function within the cell, and sometimes these shape-shifting proteins can cause serious illness, such as Creutzfeldt-Jakob, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases.

Thompson also studies cellular proteins, though the focus of her work is on proteins in the membrane of a cell. Membrane proteins are responsible for many of the cell’s processes, from harnessing energy to communicating with other cells and sensing the environment. Membrane proteins are the targets for a wide range of therapeutic drugs — and yet their structures and mechanisms remain poorly understood.

Freedom names branch officer in Hampshire County

SPRINGFIELD — Freedom Credit Union has announced it recently promoted Rae Brown, a resident of Springfield, to the role of branch officer for its Northampton and Easthampton locations. She previously served as the assistant branch officer at the Main Street, Springfield office.

Brown has more than two decades of experience in banking, including more than 11 years in Hampshire County. She has an associate degree from Springfield Technical Community College and is also a notary public.

Originally chartered in 1922 as the Western Massachusetts Telephone Workers Credit Union and renamed in 2004, Freedom Credit Union is a 10-branch, full-service financial institution. Membership is available to anyone who lives, works or attends school in Hampden, Hampshire, Franklin or Berkshire counties in Massachusetts, and Hartford or Tolland counties in Connecticut.

bankESB hires portfolio manager

EASTHAMPTON — bankESB recently announced that Rachel M. Yates of Springfield has been hired as portfolio manager. She will be based in the bank’s Easthampton on Northampton Street.

Yates brings nearly 20 years of banking experience to bankESB, joining from Berkshire Bank where she served as assistant vice president, loan review officer, and before that as assistant vice president, commercial credit officer. She earned a master’s degree in accounting and a bachelor’s degree in business administration, both from Bay Path University, as well as an associate degree in accounting from Springfield Technical Community College.


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