Sunday, July 14, 2024

News and Ideas Worth Sharing

HomeBusinessBusiness Briefs: Entrepreneurship...

Business Briefs: Entrepreneurship for All launch; access ramp at Fitzpatrick Main Stage; Edith Wharton Writers-in-Residence; BCC staff changes

Berkshire Theatre Group has announced the installation of a new modular ramp at its Fitzpatrick Main Stage to increase access for all patrons.

Entrepreneurship for All launches in Berkshire County

Pittsfield — Civic, business and community leaders have announced the launch of Entrepreneurship for All Berkshire County, a nonprofit program that leverages public-private partnerships for economic and social impact. EforAll aims to transform communities into inclusive and thriving entrepreneurial ecosystems by helping residents of all backgrounds turn their promising ideas into successful businesses.

Through a commitment of over $1 million to support its operating budget for three years, EforAll Berkshire County will be open to residents, mentors and other partners countywide.

“With its focus on the untapped potential of every resident, EforAll takes a uniquely inclusive approach to economic development. Women and minorities, immigrants and those previously unemployed are the important faces of this program,” said Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation president Peter Taylor.

The EforAll model, which is active in multiple communities throughout Massachusetts, utilizes pitch contests to connect budding entrepreneurs with business leaders to share ideas, receive feedback and compete for funding. An intensive 12-week accelerator program provides each entrepreneur with a full year of support from three mentors, a group of peers and other local experts; knowledge of building a company from the ground up; and a chance to win seed money for their startup. After launch, participants have access to an alumni network, co-working space and financial guidance.

EforAll Berkshire County will be administered by an executive director and program manager, with support from more than a dozen staff at the organization’s Lowell headquarters. In addition, local community members will participate in the process as experts, judges, mentors, and leadership and advisory board members as well as by collaborating with other community groups.


*     *     *

Berkshire Theatre Group installs access ramp at Fitzpatrick Main Stage

The new accessible modular ramp at Berkshire Theatre Group’s Fitzpatrick
Main Stage in Stockbridge. Photo courtesy Berkshire Theatre Group

Stockbridge — Berkshire Theatre Group has announced the installation of a new modular ramp at its Fitzpatrick Main Stage, 83 East Main St., to increase access for all patrons, replacing the chair lift previously there. The ramp was designed and installed by the Albany Lift Company and creates an accessible entrance into the Fitzpatrick Main Stage. The ramp was funded by a grant from the Stockbridge Community Preservation Act program.

Said Lillian Lee, BTG’s director of grants and campaigns, accessibility coordinator: says “The installation of the ramp at our Fitzpatrick Main Stage is a wonderful addition to our existing accessibility features. This is a big step toward creating a more fully accessible organization for all of our patrons. Theatre is universal, and we want to ensure that our programming is able to be enjoyed by everyone.”


*     *     *

The Mount accepting applications for 2020 Edith Wharton Writers-in-Residence program

Lenox — The Mount is accepting applications for its 2020 Edith Wharton Writers-in-Residence program, which offers two- and three-week residences each March for three women-identifying poet, fiction or creative nonfiction writers. Selected writers will receive a $1,000 stipend; work space at the Mount; and nearby, offsite) lodging for the entirety of their residencies.

Applicants must provide a proposal that includes a CV or resume; a one-page statement of purpose outlining their proposed project while at the Mount; a writing sample of 20 pages or fewer in manuscript format; and a $25 application fee. Submissions are blind-reviewed and ranked based on the following criteria: quality of writing; originality of voice; strength of the proposal; and relationship to Edith Wharton and the Mount.

The deadline to submit an application is Saturday, Sept. 7. For more information, contact Michelle Daly, public programs director, at 413-551-5110 or


*     *     *

Berkshire Community College announces new hires, staff changes

Kevin Bechard. Photo courtesy Berkshire Community College

Pittsfield — Berkshire Community College has announced the hiring of new deans, directors and staff on campus as well as new titles for a number of current staff.

Kevin Bechard is the new dean of business and outreach. He comes to BCC from Manchester Community College in Connecticut where he was faculty and department chair of business, paralegal and technology. He holds a master’s degree in business administration and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Hartford.

Laurie Gordy, Ph.D. Photo courtesy Berkshire Community College

Laurie Gordy, Ph.D., is the new dean of humanities, behavioral and social sciences. Gordy was previously faculty and dean of academic affairs, as well as interim chief academic officer, at Newbury College. Just prior, she was assistant dean of liberal arts at Northern Essex Community College. Gordy received her doctoral and her master’s degrees from University of Connecticut and her bachelor’s degree from Washington College.

Daryl Shreve. Photo courtesy Berkshire Community College

Daryl Shreve has been hired as the director of recreational services. Shreve previously worked as the assistant director of competitive sports at Illinois State University. Shreve will oversee Paterson Field House, including the fitness center, soccer fields, the Gene Dellea Community Turf Field, the Paul E. Raverta Tennis Complex, swimming pool and club sports. Shreve holds a master’s degree in higher education from Boston College and a bachelor’s degree from Drake University.

Frank Schickor remains the interim dean of STEM and allied health. Schickor had stepped into the role after the death earlier this year of Charlie Kaminski, who had served as the dean. He had previously held the position of professor of environmental and life sciences.

Lori Moon has been named the interim dean of nursing. Moon previously worked at BCC as an assistant professor of nursing and helped to oversee the licensed practical nursing program.

Lauren Goodman is the new dean of teaching and learning innovation. Previously, she was the director of BCC’s Center for Teaching and Learning.

Laura Saldarini is the new director of academic operations. Previously, she was the assistant to the vice president for academic affairs.

Julie Hannum is the new director of continuing education and South County programs. Previously, she was the director of off-campus sites.

Kelly Robertson. Photo courtesy Berkshire Community College

Kelly Robertson is the recreation facilities supervisor at Paterson Field House. Robertson is a graduate of BCC and has been promoted from her previous position working part-time at Paterson Field House.

Kirsten Wanamaker is working in academic affairs as a clerk. Previously, she was working for the workforce development department.

Liz Puntin is working in enrollment services as a clerk. Previously, she was working in the testing department.

Renee Huyghue is working as an administrative assistant in enrollment Services. Previously, she was working in student financial services.

Norah Beauregard is working as the administrative assistant in marketing. Previously, she was working as the administrative assistant to the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Berkshire Community College.

Jonah Sykes has been promoted to associate director of marketing and communications. Previously, he was manager of marketing and communications.



The Edge Is Free To Read.

But Not To Produce.

Continue reading

BUSINESS MONDAY: Spotlight on Multicultural BRIDGE—catalyzing change and integration

The grassroots organization has acquired a home base for continuing its legacy programs in the spirit of Elizabeth "Mumbett" Freeman, Frederick Douglass, and W.E. B. Du Bois.

CAPITAL IDEAS: The Fed’s Jackson Hole meeting should reveal when we will get interest rate relief

At its July meeting, I expect the Fed will tee up the possibility of an interest rate cut, confirm it at its Jackson Hole Economic Policy Symposium in August, and perhaps cut rates at its September 18, 2024 meeting.

BUSINESS MONDAY: Spotlight on Lauren Clark Fine Art and Childs + Clark Gallery—a double dip for your gallery gazing

The side-by-side spaces feature a curated selection of drawings, paintings, fine art prints, sculptures, functional pottery, and contemporary studio glass—plus special shows such as "Six of Seven" from July 7 to August 15.

The Edge Is Free To Read.

But Not To Produce.