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    Tuesday, April 16, 2024

    The Buzz: Mystic woman named director of sales at the Mohegan Sun

    Kimberly Simone is the new director of sales at the Mohegan Sun.
    Solandy Forte
    Margot Weitekamp
    Jeni GrayRoberts
    Jason Hine

    Mohegan Sun has named Kimberly Simone of Mystic as its new director of sales. Simone will guide the business operations of the conventions & expo sales team at Mohegan Sun’s department led by John Washko.

    Simone is a graduate of Bryant College and the Walt Disney World College Program in Orlando, Fla. She sat on the board for the CT River Valley chapter of MPI (Meeting Professionals International) as the Vice President of Membership and the Vice President of Marketing and Communications.

    Previous conventions & sales experience includes operating as the director of sales at Saybrook Point Resort & Marina in Old Saybrook, CT, and Director of Sales for Sabo Construction and Coldwell Banker New Homes in Waltham, Mass. Prior to her work with Saybrook Point Resort & Marina, Simone had an ascending career at Foxwoods Resort Casino, most recently serving as director of resort sales from 2019 to 2021.

    New London Rotary is helping the city’s senior citizens who are confined to their homes due to illnesses and mobility challenges.

    The club is sending items of cheer to the 55 seniors who get Meals on Wheels delivered to their homes by Thames Valley Council for Community Action. The club has already sent goodies twice and a third delivery is planned.

    For Valentine’s Day, the club assembled a gift consisting of a Valentine lollipop and a card with a message that they are important and loved. The cards were made by children in the Boys and Girls Club overseen by the Salvation Army. The Boys and Girls Club card-making project was overseen by Rotarian Gigi Gonzalez-Cottrell.

    SCORE of Eastern Connecticut is hosting a free Zoom webinar, “How Do They Do It? A Small Business Panel,” from 5:30 to 7 p.m. Thursday, March 21.

    To register, visit https://www.score.org/easternct.

    The seminar will feature three local business owners, with Margo Weitekamp of SCORE serving as moderator, sharing candid stories and success tips. Panelists are Jeni GrayRoberts, founder of RiverFire Glass in Deep River; Jason Hine, founder of The Ditty Bag Market & Café in Mystic, and Solandy Forte, founder and executive director of Solstice Behavioral Health & Consulting in Shelton.

    A team of high school students from East Lyme High School won a regional competition for the 2024 National Science Bowl last weekend and will compete in the NSB National Finals this spring, the U.S. Department of Energy, who sponsors the NSB, announced.

    “Every year this ‘competition like no other’ brings together some of the most remarkable and inspiring students from across America.,” said Asmeret Asefaw Berhe, DOE Office of Science Director, “and I would like to congratulate the East Lyme High School team as they advance to the National Finals! Good luck to you – our future scientists, visionaries, and leaders!”

    The top two middle and high school teams will win $5,000 for their schools’ math and science departments. Other schools placing in the top 16 in the National Finals will win $1,000 for their schools’ science departments.

    For more information, visit https://www.energy.gov/science.

    The employees of Norwich Public Utilities have raised and pledged $17,328 to the United Way of Southeastern Connecticut through 2024.

    In addition, NPU also organized several fundraising activities for employees, including breakfasts and lunches that generated an additional $4,706 for the United Way. When combined with NPU’s annual corporate gift of $5,000, NPU’s total contribution to the United Way in 2024 will be $27,034.

    Chris LaRose, general manager of NPU, praised employees, saying “Time and time again, the NPU team demonstrates their compassion and service to our customers and community.”

    Organizations that have been designated for support by NPU employees include United Community & Family Services, the ARC New London County, the Martin House, and Madonna Place.

    Applications for grant funding to improve waterfront facilities and public access to the shoreline are now accepted by the Connecticut Port Authority.

    The Port Authority’s Small Harbor Improvement Projects Program offers funding for the preparation of plans, studies, and construction of or improvements to sea walls, piers, docks, navigation aids, and bridges, as well as berthing areas and channels to berthing areas.

    Applications must include a description of the current site conditions and how the proposed project will improve the site and support economic development in the area. A description of how the proposal will support the state’s maritime policies and encourage commerce also is required.

    For an application and to learn more about SHIPP grants, go to https://ctportauthority.com/.

    The Connecticut Green Bank’s recently released annual report for fiscal year 2023 revealed that for each $1 of public investment, $6.70 of private investment is attracted into local communities. Since the Connecticut Green Bank’s inception in 2011, more than $2.43 billion of investment has been mobilized into the state’s green economy through its programs and partnerships.

    Additionally, this investment generates millions of dollars in tax revenues, supports the creation of thousands of job-years, and reduces greenhouse gas emissions which benefits public health through cleaner air. The Green Bank is making steady progress to ensure that by 2025 no less than 40 percent of investment and impacts from our programs benefit vulnerable communities that are disproportionately harmed by the effects of climate change.

    To access the FY23 report, visit https://www.ctgreenbank.com/strategy-impact/reporting-and-transparency/ or https://www.ctgreenbank.com/wp-content/uploads/2023/11/Connecticut-Green-Bank-Annual-Report-2023.pdf. Learn more at www.ctgreenbank.com.

    New data released last week by 211 Child Care shows that Connecticut’s child care programs are operating at only an estimated 74% of capacity. The organization released a new map that helps residents and lawmakers avisualize areas with low capacity.

    Sherri Sutera, Senior Vice President of Child Care Services, United Way of Connecticut, said “The data underscores that, as a first step to increase actual child care availability, there is an opportunity to work with providers to get them up to fully licensed capacity. Partnering with child care providers to fix problems that limit capacity – like increasing wages for staff or making improvements to existing facilities – can help a community to increase the number of child care slots more cost-effectively and quickly than building new brick-and-mortar centers.”

    “This additional data provides a new opportunity to think strategically about how and where local and state leaders, parents, philanthropy and providers can work together to address this urgent need,” said Lisa Tepper Bates, President & CEO, United Way of Connecticut.

    Congressman Joe Courtney visited the Chamber of Commerce of Eastern Connecticut’s Regional Innovation Center in New London on Feb. 22. Courtney met with small businesses currently operating out of the center as well as Chamber President and CEO Tony Sheridan.

    Others in attendance included New London Mayor Michael Passero and Elizabeth Nocera of the City of New London Economic Development Department. Discussions included housing affordability, small and minority business resources, and an update on Washington activities.

    Among the group were representatives of the ADNL/Asociación de Dominicanos de New London, The Black Business Alliance, HEDCO/Business Resource Center, Habitat for Humanity, and Lee Couture Financial, LLC. Other occupants of the Center include John Bashaw Law, LLC., Minority Construction Council, Inc., and the Human Resources Consortium.

    As the center’s private offices reach capacity, the center turns to focusing on leasing co-working space to entrepreneurs and small businesses, as well as providing resources and programs for the local and regional business community.

    The Steak Loft in Mystic is holding a special fundraising night Tuesday, March 5, for UCFS Healthcare.

    If you mention UCFS to your server, the restaurant 27 Coogan Blvd, will make sure 10% of your check is donated to UCFS Healthcare. For more information, contact pkinder@ucfs.org or 860-822-4146.

    The Buzz is a weekly roundup of business news compiled by Business Editor Lee Howard. To get in The Buzz, email businessbriefs@theday.com. To easily access urls cited in print, go to www.theday.com and type “The Buzz” into the search bar.

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