Making News in Business, Sept. 28

  • Emily O’Neil

  • Isabella Weber

Published: 9/27/2023 9:35:51 AM
Modified: 9/27/2023 9:35:03 AM
Veteran of victim witness advocacy to lead DA unit

NORTHAMPTON — The Northwestern district attorney’s office has named Emily O’Neil as director of its Victim Witness Unit, replacing Jackie Gaw, who retired this month after 12 years in the position.

O’Neil comes to the office after a 28-year career in the Hampden County district attorney’s office, where she started as an intern, moving into court administration work, and then victim witness advocacy. In her role there, she served as victim witness advocate in the district courts, the child abuse unit, for superior court cases, and most recently as an advocate in the special victims unit.

O’Neil earned her undergraduate degree from American International College in criminal justice and psychology and a master’s degree in criminal justice from Westfield State University.

She started in her new position on Sept. 11.

Gaw, meanwhile, was highly respected in the field of victim witness advocacy, serving the office with distinction since her appointment on Jan. 1, 2011, when he assumed office.

In April, Gaw was honored with the 2023 Gerard D. Downing Advocate of the year award at the Massachusetts District Attorneys Association annual prosecutors conference.

O’Neil noted that during her time as a victim witness advocate in Hampden County, Jackie Gaw was a mentor to her.

UMass Amherst economist named to ‘TIME100 Next’

AMHERST — University of Massachusetts Amherst economist Isabella Weber has been named to the 2023 “TIME100 Next” list of emerging leaders from around the world. Weber is known internationally for her research on systemically important prices, strategic price stabilization and what she calls “sellers’ inflation” — the ability of firms with market power to hike prices and boost profits in an emergency.

Weber, an associate professor of economics, first gained international attention in late 2021 when she authored an op-ed for The Guardian explaining how the history of strategic price controls could inform the fight against inflation brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. Initially, her intervention sharply divided the economic community and Weber faced a wave of blistering online harassment. However, as inflation persisted and it became clear after the Russian attack on Ukraine that inflation could not be stabilized by increasing interest rates alone, many critics eventually came to embrace Weber’s views. Ultimately, her policy proposals informed Germany’s gas price stabilization policy and her contributions helped shift the inflation debate as chronicled in The New Yorker.

Weber is also a research associate and research leader in China studies with the UMass Amherst Political Economy Research Institute and an associate in research at the Fairbank Center at Harvard University.

An expansion of the TIME100 list of the most influential people in the world, TIME100 Next highlights 100 emerging leaders who are shaping the future of business, entertainment, sports, politics, health, science, activism and more. The full list and related tributes appear in the Sept. 25 issue.

New HCC president receives warm community welcome

HOLYOKE — Holyoke Community College President George Timmons received a community welcome during a reception Sept. 12 at the Gary Rome Hyundai dealership on Whiting Farms Road.

It was the first public reception for Timmons, who began his tenure as HCC’s fifth president on July 13.

The reception followed the quarterly meeting of the HCC Foundation Board of Directors, on which Rome and Timmons both sit.

The reception included the presentation of a $5,000 check from Rome to the HCC Foundation for the benefit of HCC’s Thrive Student Resource Center, which provides essential resources and support to students dealing with challenges such as food and housing insecurity.

Those in attendance included members of the 27-member HCC Foundation Board, as well as members of the HCC Board of Trustees and others from the community.

NEPM wins national Murrow Award

SPRINGFIELD — NEPM has announced that it has won a national Murrow Award from the Radio Television Digital News Association (RTDNA). The award was given for a high-flying profile of paragliders in western Massachusetts by freelance reporter Ben James.

James’ story won the national Murrow award for Excellence in Sound in the small market radio division. It initially won the regional award for Excellence in Sound in RTDNA’s Region 10 small market group of radio stations in New England. It advanced to the national level where it competed with stories by small market radio stations in all 14 RTDNA regions.

James captured the sound by making a tandem paragliding flight — microphone in hand — off Mount Tom in Holyoke. The story shared a detailed look into a tight-knit paragliding community that flocks to Mount Tom to take advantage of favorable wind conditions and beautiful views of the valley below.

RTDNA is the world's largest professional organization devoted exclusively to broadcast and digital journalism. The Edward R. Murrow Awards Gala will be held on Oct. 9 in New York City.

Ben James has produced extensive news series for NEPM on a number of topics including youth mental health, teaching during the pandemic, the shortage of teachers of color.


Support Local Journalism

Subscribe to the Daily Hampshire Gazette, your leading source for news in the Pioneer Valley.

Daily Hampshire Gazette Office

23 Service Center Road
Northampton, MA 01060


Copyright © 2021 by H.S. Gere & Sons, Inc.
Terms & Conditions - Privacy Policy