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Western Massachusetts

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Denise Jordan on the City of Springfield’s Rise

Denise Jordan, Chief of Staff for Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno joined me on to discuss the profound metamorphosis currently underway in the city.  From MGM, to Railroad manufacturing, to up and coming businesses graduating out of Valley Venture Mentors, there certainly is a lot of ground to cover.  We also chat leadership, and of course, the Mayor’s infallible hair.  

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State Senator Don Humason Is More Like a Best Friend than a Politician

Don Humason is the State Senator for the 2nd Hampden and Hampshire District, representing the communities of Agawam, Southwick, Granville, Tolland, Russell, Montgomery, Southampton, Easthampton, Chicopee (7, 8A, 9A), Westfield, and Holyoke in the Massachusetts State Senate. The Senator stopped by the program to discuss the manufacturing industry, economic development, and President Roosevelt.

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Alfonso Santaniello on Entrepreneurship and Philanthropy in Western Massachusetts: Part Two

There’s a lot of people working hard to move the economy forwarded in Western Massachusetts. Alfonso Santaniello (President of the Creative Strategy Agency) joins me to discuss a few of the people making a difference in our region. In part two of our interview we talk about the growing entrepreneurial ecosystem and passionate professionals supporting worthwhile causes. 

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Alfonso Santaniello on Good People Doing Great Things in Western Massachusetts: Part One

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I’m not the only one who finds Western Massachusetts to be a giving community. Alfonso Santaniello (President of the Creative Strategy Agency) joins me to discuss a few of the entrepreneurs and business professionals making a difference in our region. In part one of our interview we celebrate these individuals. We were also fortunate enough to have Angela Lussier join us – an individual was has encouraged both Alfonso and myself to become entrepreneurs.

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Marla Michel Discusses the Business Growth Center

Over the last few months there has been a lot of press surrounding entrepreneurship in Western Massachusetts. Efforts like Valley Venture Mentors have shined a light on the need for resources helping entrepreneurs build startups. But, what if you’re already an established business? Where can you go for assistance? The Business Growth Center at Springfield Technology Park! I recently interviewed Marla Michel, Director of the center about how they assist small business growth. The Business Growth Center not only offers advisory programs, but also educational resources, office space, and other amenities. If you’re a small business trying to grow in Western Mass, you don’t want to miss her interview. Learn more about the Business Growth Center here.

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The Engine’s Version of a ‘Man on the Street’ Interview; Featuring Mike Briggs

Mike Briggs

Our guests are usually community leaders and entrepreneurs shaping the Western Massachusetts economy. This episode we thought we would change things up and invited a working professional on the program. Mike Briggs and I met on Twitter after I posted a link encouraging people to grab a cup of coffee with me. Mike is a Retirement Planning and Insurance Services specialist with Horizon Investment Management Group in Longmeadow. We had a fascinating conversation about what’s going on in the area, and I thought it would be a great idea to have him on the program. On the program we discuss financial literacy, philanthropy, MGM, Springfield, and the local economy. Mike’s insights are intelligent and thought-provoking, and you won’t want to miss what he has to say.

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Debra Boronski Shares What It Takes to Build a Successful Economy

Debra Boronski

A sustainable economy requires a lot of moving parts. In Western Massachusetts we have businesses and entrepreneurs which are the lifeblood to growth, as well as organizations such as the Economic Development Council, Chambers of Commerce, and Young Professional Society which add mobility to our momentum. We flourish when these parts move in unison; however, that doesn’t always happen. Debra Boronski knows all about the challenges that go into maintaining a vibrant economic infrastructure. Not only is Debra the Founder and President of the Massachusetts Chamber of Commerce, she is a candidate running for State Senate. For over 25 years she has dedicated her career to encouraging small business growth and making the lives of employees residing Western Massachusetts just a little bit easier. She’s also a Junior Achievement alumni who understands the importance of investing in our children. Debra shares her passion and vision in this Engine interview. Listen in to hear what happens when we all move in the same direction – spoiler, we get where we're going a heckuva lot quicker.

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Aliz Koletas: Greek translation, ‘Kick-Ass’ Lady

Aliz Koletas of WGBY’s Connecting Point

My core philosophy is ‘it takes a community to build an economy.’ To me, Western Massachusetts is a perfect testing ground for that logic. We have a tremendous amount of potential, yet we struggle to celebrate the individuals who are moving our region ahead each and every day. So, you can imagine my delight when I connected with Aliz Koletas of WGBY’s Connecting Point, which is a television show dedicated to connecting people, places, and ideas. Aliz is a breath of fresh air whose personality, and dedication to the people of our community, is unparalleled. Along with being a top-notch TV personality, Aliz is an entrepreneur who has experienced her fair share of ups and downs. In our interview, we discuss the importance of people moving together toward the same direction in order to bring about change, as well as her experiences as an entrepreneur. If you’re a fan of Western Massachusetts, or interested in learning from a business owner that has ‘been there and got the T-shirt’ you will not want to miss her Engine interview.

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