Business Briefs: GALAxy fundraiser a success; charging stations at Hawthorne Valley; new academic dean at Miss Hall’s; project leadership workshop; ‘Best Practices’ status for GreylockMore Info
Berkshire Museum’s GALAxy fundraiser a ‘stellar success’
Pittsfield — The Berkshire Museum held its “GALAxy: Party in the Cosmos” fundraiser Friday, July 27, with nearly 300 guests. The theme was inspired by the summer exhibition “Josh Simpson: Galactic Landscapes,” a solo show by contemporary glass artist Josh Simpson that exemplifies the intersection of art and science. The benefit raised more than $190,000 for the museum’s education programs, surpassing the goals set for the event.
The festivities began with a reception in the gallery featuring Simpson and former astronaut Cady Coleman, who served as honorary chairs of the event. The evening continued with drinks and hors d’oeuvres in Lab 102, live and silent auctions, dinner offerings in the Crane Room, portraits by photographer Bill Wright, and a dance party. GALAxy was also supported by Methuselah, which offered special cocktails, and by DJ BFG, who provided the music.
Thanks to the generosity of those who attended “GALAxy: Party in the Cosmos,” all Berkshire County schools will be able to visit the museum for class trips with free admission for the upcoming 2018–19 academic year. Though Pittsfield students have enjoyed free class visits for more than a decade, the museum can now expand the program, impacting a total of more than 15,500 children.
* * *
Hawthorne Valley adds electric vehicle charging stations
Ghent, N.Y. — Hawthorne Valley has announced the installation of six destination charging stations for electric vehicles in its parking lot. The stations are available for public use, free of charge and were installed in partnership with Tesla.
Between 2013 and 2015, the number of electric vehicles has doubled worldwide to just over 3 million. While this makes up a small fraction of the total car market, its growth points to electric vehicles soon making up a large portion of the global car fleet.
“Hawthorne Valley has been committed to sustainable agricultural practices for over 45 years as a way to rejuvenate the earth that we call home,” said executive director Martin Ping. “We are thrilled to offer these charging stations for public use as a way to further combat the effects of climate change and contribute to the sustainable energy movement.”
The chargers are located on the lampposts in the middle of the school parking lot. They supply 240 volts of electricity, giving approximately 25 miles of range per hour of charging.
* * *
Miss Hall’s School appoints new academic dean
Pittsfield — Miss Hall’s School has announced the appointment of Lisa J. Alberti as its new dean of academics and faculty.
Alberti, a member of Miss Hall’s School’s class of 1973 and a Lenox native, joined Miss Hall’s on July 1, bringing with her more than 40 years of classroom and administrative experience. Previously the associate head of school at Trevor Day School in Manhattan which she joined in 1977, Alberti holds a master’s degree in education from Bank Street College of Education and a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Trinity College. She currently lives in Richmond.
In her role at Miss Hall’s, Alberti will work with the faculty to guide, shape and implement the school’s vision for its academic program. She will work closely with department chairs and other colleagues to identify, encourage and support innovation that incorporates new ways of teaching and learning and the core competencies of an MHS graduate into the curriculum. Additionally, Alberti joins the school’s leadership team, the senior administrative team that meets regularly to exchange information, set institutional goals and policy, advise the head of school, and anticipate future needs for the school’s ongoing growth.
* * *
Nonprofit Center of the Berkshires to hold project leadership workshop
North Adams — The Nonprofit Center of the Berkshires will hold a “Project Leadership: Planning Work to Influence People and Drive Results” workshop for nonprofit organizations Monday, Aug. 6, from 10 a.m. to noon at the Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts’ Design Lab.
Led by consultant Bob Voss, workshop participants will be briefly introduced to the Seven Crucial Conversations for Leading Change. According to Voss, a team needs to be able to assess the current state of their organization, the ideal future state and the primary constraints to both higher team performance and business growth. Strategic initiatives for resolving these constraints need to be created and effectively implemented. He will focus on the last of the seven principles: implementation, and how to successfully organize and lead change projects. Participants will learn about the key components of the life cycle of leading a project and how to use some project management tools.
Voss has extensive experience as a teacher, trainer and technical writer, and has held senior operational, executive and board-level roles in a global nonprofit organization. His broad range of life skills includes training as a systems ecologist; working as a software trainer, consultant and co-author of several best-selling software books; and executive and team leadership experience. Trained in whole-systems thinking, Voss earned his Ph.D. in insect ecology from the UMass Amherst.
The cost of the workshop is $25 for NPC Berkshires members and $35 for nonmembers. For more information or to register, call (413) 645-3151.
* * *
Greylock Insurance Agency earns ‘Best Practices’ status
Pittsfield — Greylock Insurance Agency, a subsidiary of Greylock Federal Credit Union, has announced that it has achieved Best Practices status for the third consecutive year from the Independent Insurance Agents and Brokers of America. Greylock Insurance achieved the honor by participating in the IIABA Best Practices Study Group, an annual survey and study of leading independent insurance agencies that documents the business practices of the “best” agencies and urges others to adopt similar practices.
The selected Best Practices agencies retain their status during the three-year cycle by submitting extensive financial and operational data for review each year. This is the third year of the current three-year study cycle, in which more than 1,500 independent agencies throughout the U.S. were nominated to take part but only 262 of them qualified. To be chosen, an agency had to be among the 35 to 45 top-performing agencies in one of six categories.