Making News in Business



Published: 6/24/2018 8:20:55 PM

Business Among Moms plans July event

EASTHAMPTON — The Western Massachusetts Chapter of Business Among Moms will hold a Health Happy Hour on July 10 from 10 to 11:30 a.m. The event, to be held at Mary Ann’s Dance and More, 396 Main St., is free for BAM members and $15 for non-members. Those interested may register at

Florence Bank breaks ground in Springfield

SPRINGFIELD — Florence Bank broke ground June 12 on its second Hampden County branch, at 1444 Allen St. in Springfield. Leaders said the full-service location will open later this year.

Last September, Florence Bank opened its first branch in Hampden County at 1010 Union St. in West Springfield. The Springfield branch marks the second of an anticipated four branches in the region.

Florence Bank has nearly 3,800 customers living in Hampden County, including 700 business customers.

HCC awarded Deval Patrick Prize 

HOLYOKE — Holyoke Community College has won the 2018 Deval Patrick Prize for Community Colleges from the Boston Foundation.

HCC will receive the $50,000 prize for expanding its culinary arts and hospitality programs to address industry needs and for the partnerships the college put together to construct the new HCC MGM Culinary Arts Institute in Holyoke’s innovation district.

First awarded in 2015, the Deval Patrick Prize recognizes community colleges that do an outstanding job partnering with employers to build effective career pathways for their students.

Part of the $50,000 prize money is allocated for a free, line-cook training program for experienced kitchen workers that started June 4.

Easthampton Savngs hires Dena M. Hall 

EASTHAMPTON — Dena M. Hall has been hired as executive vice president, chief marketing officer at bankESB.

Hall brings over 20 years of experience in bank marketing and community engagement, most recently serving as the western Massachusetts regional president and chief marketing officer for United Bank based in Hartford, Connecticut. Hall specializes in brand strategy, demand generation product marketing, social media, customer satisfaction programs and community relations. She will oversee the marketing and public relations efforts and charitable giving programs at both bankESB and bankHometown.

Hall received her bachelor’s degree in communication and journalism from the University of Massachusetts Amherst, and graduated with honors from the Massachusetts School for Financial Studies and the National School of Banking and Finance at Fairfield University in Connecticut. She has also earned a certificate in fundraising from the UMass School of Management.

Coldwell Banker welcomes Eskett

Darcy Eskett has joined Coldwell Banker Upton-Massamont Realtors at their Amherst office.

Eskett lives in Ware. She studied computer science at Holyoke Community College and previously worked in medical billing and insurance.

Eskett is a member of Pioneer Valley, Massachusetts and National Associations of Realtors. Her primary focus will be residential real estate in Hampshire County.

UMassFive donates personal care items to survival center

HADLEY — During the month of May, the Hadley branch of UMassFive College Federal Credit Union held a personal care items drive to benefit the pantry of the Amherst Survival Center. The Credit Union collected 218 pounds of items, which the pantry will provide to neighbors in need.

Members and staff donated nearly twice the amount collected during the last drive. Donations included toilet paper, diapers, feminine products, soap, deodorant, sunblock, and combs.

Kiwanis hold charter night fete

NORTHAMPTON — More than 75 Kiwanians and guests were on hand June 13 when the new Kiwanis Club of Northampton received its charter from District Governor Daniel C. Bennett. The event was held at the World War II Club on Conz Street.

Past Gov. George Delisle, who was the club opener of record for Northampton and is a charter member of the new club, served as master of ceremonies for the event, which also served as Governor Dan’s official visit to Divisions 16 and 17.

The original Northampton Kiwanis Club was chartered in 1918, one of two clubs chartered in New England that year. It disbanded in the mid-1990s. A previous rechartering effort failed in 2002.

Mayor David Narkewicz was introduced by Past Governor George as the first charter member of Northampton Kiwanis. The mayor told the crowd that he was pleased to see Kiwanis back in Northampton after such a long absence, and said he was looking forward to the many benefits the club will bring to the city and its youth.

Charter officers of the Northampton Kiwanis Club are President Margaret Wynne-Gruszecki, Vice President Denis Murphy II, Secretary George Delisle, and Treasurer David Starr. Charter directors are Michael Cherry, Mike Markiewicz, Mark Robison, and Whitney Russell. Additional charter members are Suzanne Beck, Tanzania Cannon-Eckerle, Steven J. Connor, Geana M. Delisle. Susan Holden, Emily Mew, Markiewicz, Dr. Cornelia Pearsall, and Northampton School Superintendent John A. Provost.

Rhodes receives Grinspoon award

AMHERST — Keren Rhodes, the youth and family education director of the Jewish Community of Amherst, has received a North American Grinspoon Award for Excellence in Jewish Education. The other local finalists were Marlene Rachelle and Felicia Sloin.

Rhodes will receive a cash prize of $1,000 and a $500 professional development grant. The finalists each receive a $250 professional development grant. Rhodes has been working at the JCA for five years. She grew up in Amherst. Her first job was as a teacher’s assistant at the JCA school more than 20 years ago. During high school and college, she was involved in a Jewish youth group, where she gained valuable leadership and educational skills. Rhodes participated in Young Judaea’s gap year program in Israel and then earned a bachelor’s in psychology from Brandeis University. She attended Mt Sinai School of Medicine for two years before switching career paths. Today, Keren, her husband and two children live in Amherst, and the family owns and runs Glazed Doughnut Shop.


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