SEPTEMBER 2016
around the table
Executive Director's Message

Dear Members,

We had a busy summer with the end of the legislative session resulting in numerous bill signing events. Special thanks to all our members who stepped up to participate in the minutiae of the legislative process throughout this session. I also want to pass along our thanks to members for sharing their insights with us and our Chair, Marcy Reed. Your feedback will enable us to continue to strengthen the Roundtable platform for our members across the state.

We have a busy fall ahead with our work on statewide ballot questions, the STEM and Jobs/Workforce Summits, as well as convening Roundtable Task Forces to update our policy priorities and principles. As always, we appreciate your support and engagement!


MBR’s Fall Board Meeting Features Policy Discussion, Presentation from MassINC Polling Group
A strong group of Roundtable members and guests attended MBR’s fall Board meeting hosted by Patrick Sullivan, Massachusetts President, People’s United Bank in Boston. The meeting featured a timely conversation with MassINC Polling Group President Steve Koczela about the presidential election and statewide ballot questions. MBR has voted to support Question 2 lifting the cap on public charter schools and voted to oppose Question 4 legalizing marijuana.

Roundtable Chair Marcy Reed highlighted her meetings with individual members of the MBR Executive Committee this summer, which confirmed that talent, transportation and energy remain among the top issues on the minds of business leaders from diverse industry sectors across the state. MBR Executive Director JD Chesloff laid out plans to convene the Roundtable’s five standing Task Forces—Education, Health Care, Energy, Transportation and Competitiveness—to update MBR’s principles and develop a member-driven public policy agenda.

The Roundtable welcomed several prospective members during the meeting, companies that are considering joining MBR in 2017. The next full meeting of the Roundtable Board of Directors will be held on Thursday, December 15th, 8:00-10:00 a.m. in Boston.

MBR Teams Up with Berkshire Business Roundtable for Discussion on Higher Education in Pittsfield
During a wide-ranging discussion with business leaders from Berkshire County, state Commissioner of Higher Education Carlos Santiago highlighted challenges associated with a projected decline in college-educated workers in Massachusetts. The findings were outlined in The Degree Gap, the Department’s annual Vision Project report released this summer. It notes that the “rate at which Massachusetts residents earn college degrees will pivot from growth to decline by 2022 unless the state’s public higher education system, which educates more than half of all undergraduates, is able to increase the number of students who enroll and earn diplomas.” 

MBR Secretary and Chairman of the Berkshire Business Roundtable Jeffrey Cook kicked off the discussion with local business and education leaders including Roundtable member Jerry Burke, president of Hillcrest Educational Centers, Mass. College of Liberal Arts President James Birge and Berkshire Community College President Ellen Kennedy. Members discussed the degree gap, population loss in the Berkshires, college access and affordability, making it easier for students to transfer credits between and among public higher education, as well as collaboration between colleges and the business community to produce workers with the skills companies need. 

READ more

Roundtable Co-Sponsors 13th Annual STEM Summit November 1st at the DCU Center in Worcester
The Roundtable is pleased to co-sponsor the 13th annual Massachusetts STEM Summit, scheduled for Tuesday, November 1, 2016 at the DCU Center in Worcester. The event will draw 1,500 STEM leaders from education, business, government and non-profits for an exciting program of stimulating speakers, sessions and exhibitors. Colin Angle, CEO and Co-Founder of iRobot and an MBR member, will provide keynote remarks.

The Summit’s theme, “Building a Lifetime of Opportunity,” recognizes that the nurturing of curiosity and enthusiasm for STEM can begin in the earliest years of life, and then be built upon and sustained over the course of a lifetime. Discussion of this theme, and sharing of successful programs and activities will be the foundation of this year’s Summit.

Registration is now open. MBR will have a table reserved for a limited number of Roundtable members on a first-come, first-served basis. Otherwise, please register at 2016 STEM Summit or contact the MBR office and we can register for you.

Roundtable Welcomes David Howe, President, J. Derenzo Company
The Roundtable is pleased to welcome new member David Howe, President of the J. Derenzo Companies headquartered in Brockton. David has over 30 years of general site utility experience and is widely recognized as a leader in the field. His passion for business, his technical expertise, and his commitment to safety has earned him a solid reputation among the area’s top construction managers and real estate developers.

David sets the standard for hard work, efficiency, and accountability that is the foundation of the J. Derenzo Companies. He is involved in every aspect of the companies and their projects, and oversees everything from finances, to project management, to business development. With his hands-on approach to management, David has an in-depth understanding of every project and the daily operations of each of the four J. Derenzo Companies.

In addition to his work at J. Derenzo Companies, David is a champion among a variety of notable charities, and believes that as a business owner, it’s important to look outside of the business and help to have a positive impact within the community. David’s team at the J. Derenzo Companies donates time, labor, and financial resources to a number of local charities such as Boston Scholar Athletes, Camp Harbor View, The Crohn's and Colitis Foundation, The DJ Dream Fund, and School on Wheels of Massachusetts.

David, his wife Karen, and three children live in Easton, MA where he is currently working on a revitalizing the Town’s historical Main Street. Mr. Howe has spearheaded the redevelopment of the downtown by bringing the successful restaurant, The Farmers Daughter, now celebrating its third year, the Towneship which is scheduled to open in early 2017, and several other retail and residential projects.

Attorney General Issues Guidance for Businesses Providing Public Accommodations
Attorney General Maura Healey issued guidance for businesses regarding the state’s new law aimed at protecting the rights of transgender individuals in the Commonwealth. More than a dozen Roundtable members signed a letter this spring urging the Legislature to pass transgender equality legislation.

The Attorney General’s Office worked collaboratively with the Roundtable and listened to feedback from our members as they developed specific guidance for employers offering public accommodations. The Roundtable appreciates AG Healey’s leadership and partnership to ensure that the implementation of the new law goes as smoothly as possible for businesses and customers.   

In the letter to the Legislature, business leaders stated clearly that, “Promoting equality is not just the right thing to do—it is also good for business. Discriminatory laws make it harder for companies and regions to recruit talented employees, attract customers, and build a thriving economy. That is why more than 200 companies have endorsed this bill.”

GUIDANCE from the Attorney General

Roundtable Partners on 7th Annual Jobs & Workforce Summit at Devens
The Roundtable is teaming with the Workforce Solutions Group again this year to produce the 7th Annual Jobs & Workforce Summit at Devens on October 26, 2016. The program will feature remarks from several Roundtable business leaders, as well as Speaker Pro Tempore Patricia Haddad and Congressman Seth Moulton. It will also feature a discussion with National Business Roundtable education and workforce development policy expert Dane Linn.

This year's theme, "We Mean Business," will put a spotlight on the skills needed to compete in a global economy, and how employers and policy makers are working together to meet talent needs. The 2016 Summit will attract more than 300 key policy makers, business, labor and education leaders. Our featured speakers will present the latest information about labor market and credential needs, career pathways, higher education initiatives, and innovative employment strategies for young adults. In addition, we will also present the WSG Workforce Champion Awards to the Employer of the Year, Training Partnership of the Year, Best Youth Employment program, and the rare Lifetime Achievement Award for Advocacy.

For more information, please contact Chris Kealey or visit online. If you know of a company deserving of the Employer of the Year Award, please nominate them by 10/11/16.

Roundtable Partners with UMass Boston Emerging Leaders Program to Strengthen State’s Talent Pipeline
The Roundtable will engage a team from the UMass Boston Emerging Leaders Program that will interview CEOs and senior business leaders, as well as public officials and policy experts to examine and promote the state’s Workforce Competitiveness Trust Fund. Managed by Commonwealth Corporation, the program funds regional workforce training partnerships between employers, educational institutions and community groups to build a talent pipeline for jobs that are in demand.   

The ELP team consists of rising stars from a range of companies and organizations including Roundtable members Suffolk Construction, Eversource, TD Garden, as well as the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, Legal Seafoods and AlliedUniversal. The team will review the history and results of the WCTF, explore the need/demand among employers for proactive pipeline training programs, produce case studies from the list of current grantees and develop fact sheets and other materials to help promote the program. The team will develop recommendations for policy interventions that could improve the way the Commonwealth engages in training to meet demand in different regions of the state and to more effectively market the results of job training to policy makers and other key stakeholders. 

Going Around the Table
News, links and information about members of the Roundtable

Roundtable Chair Marcy Reed Honored with Abigail Adams Award Recognizing Outstanding Women Leaders
The Massachusetts Women’s Political Caucus is hosting the 29th annual tribute to Abigail Adams presenting awards to outstanding women leaders including Roundtable Chair Marcy Reed, Lt. Governor Karen Polito and several others during a dinner event on October 27, 2016 at the Fairmont Copley Plaza Hotel in Boston. MBR has reserved a table for this event with limited space available for Roundtable members on a first-come, first-served basis. Please please contact Chris Kealey at 617-728-0881 for more information.

Roundtable Member Deepwater Wind Opens New Bedford Office
Headquartered in Providence, R.I., Deepwater Wind announced Tuesday it will open an office in downtown New Bedford, where Massachusetts has focused its efforts for staging offshore wind developments. The company's Massachusetts development team, led by Matthew Morrissey, will be located in the historic Standard-Times building, Deepwater Wind announced. Deepwater Wind's five-turbine project off Block Island is set to become the first operating offshore wind farm in the United States when it goes live later this year. The company also has plans to develop an area off the coast of Martha's Vineyard. Deepwater Wind, DONG Energy and OffshoreMV have signed a letter of intent with the Baker administration to lease the $113 million, 26-acre New Bedford Marine Commerce Terminal for staging operations after the awarding of offshore wind contracts for which the three expect to compete. "We're putting our Massachusetts project into high gear, and opening our office in New Bedford is an important next step," said Deepwater Wind CEO Jeffrey Grybowski in a statement. New Bedford Mayor Jon Mitchell said the move "reflects Deepwater Wind's appreciation for the many competitive advantages that come with having a strong presence in New Bedford." The company also said it will submit a proposal under the state's new law calling for 1,600 megawatts of offshore wind procurement. The company will host an open house at its new offices in October. - Andy Metzger/SHNS

Summer Search Helping Youth in Boston with Support from Roundtable Members
Against the backdrop of public policy initiatives designed to align the needs of employers with those of the workforce, Roundtable members are leading efforts to engage with local organizations that support students and their college and professional careers. One excellent example of this is our members’ collaborative work with a Boston non-profit called Summer Search.

Summer Search has worked for two decades to close the opportunity gap for low-income Boston area students by changing what they believe is possible for themselves. The program identifies promising Greater Boston high school sophomores and invests in an intensive series of summer experiences, aimed to jolt them out of their comfort zones and teach them about their own potential. Experiences can range from hiking through the mountains of Utah to building a village community center in Peru.

The program continues to support these students with focused, weekly mentoring from their sophomore year in high school through college graduation.  Summer Search mentors are paid, trained, employed staff of the organization, and focus on students’ social-emotional needs. They support students with everything from understanding college choices or figuring out financial aid, to dealing with support structures at home, or challenges at school.

The opportunity for students to interact so closely with global corporations helps Summer Search mentors foster these young, active members of our community into rising leaders in the workforce.

Since 2006, State Street has worked with Summer Search in a variety of ways. Led by Boston Summer Search Board Member and State Street VP Jeff Dorigan, State Street has recruited several Summer Search students for its internship program. Jeff also recruits Career Coaches from State Street to provide career mentoring for Summer Search students.

Thanks to this mutually-beneficial pipeline, Summer Search has a growing community of Summer Search alumni working at State Street!  Jeff and his colleagues at State Street have built a rich relationship with Summer Search which has successfully contributed to State Street’s workforce development.

Other Roundtable leaders attuned to the mutual value partnering with Summer Search offers include Natixis, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Northeastern University, Shawmut Design and Construction, Eastern Bank, and Mintz Levin. Through these collaborations, the Roundtable is able to advance opportunities for deserving Boston area youth, while expanding the local pool of qualified employees who will become Boston’s future business leaders.

Roundtable Member UMass Holding Change Management Master Class Workshops
An organization’s ability to effectively deal with change is a business imperative. There is a great deal of research that indicates in order to succeed, organizations must be flexible and adapt to change. Yet, there is still a culture of resistance embedded in change efforts. For a business to move forward with change initiatives, they need a strong cohort within the organization to lead the change.

The Roundtable is a proud supporter of the Center for Collaborative Leadership at UMass Boston. These interactive, full day workshops are designed to address the need for your formal and informal leaders to face change and turn it into a positive for your organization. For more information about the series, visit their website.

Big Pharma, Big Biotech: Inside Shire's ferocious recent growth
9/23/2016 | Boston Business Journal
By Don Seiffert

It was two years ago, in October 2014, that Flemming Ornskov, CEO of Shire plc, heard the news from the chairman of his board of directors: The $54 billion merger with AbbVie was officially off.

The news followed weeks of uncertainty following changes by the U.S. Treasury that would make the deal — structured as a tax inversion to lower the Illinois-based drugmaker's corporate tax rate — less profitable. Ornskov himself was uncertain of his own future: There had been some talk of him heading up one of AbbVie's divisions post-merger, but nothing had been set in stone. Within minutes of hearing the deal was dead, Ornskov decided that as a leader, he needed to put his own uncertainty about the future of the company aside. Shire was expected to be swallowed up by the larger company, and many employees had already been looking for other jobs by the time the news of the merger's dissolution came. At that moment, action was more important than ever. It was a decision that would set the tone for the next two years.

"I quickly spoke to our head of HR, and I said, 'Let's call a global town hall.'" That meeting was held in the company's Lexington facility, Ornskov recalled, and beamed to as many international locations as possible in what Ornskov calls "a bit of a logistical nightmare." He wanted to send a clear signal that the company was not just going to wait around for another acquisition offer, so his first words on that broadcast heard by employees around the world were, "We're back." READ MORE

Does your company have news about industry trends, key milestones or other materials you are sharing with the public? We want to include news from our members in this space, so please send any story ideas or links to MBR Deputy Director Chris Kealey.

TwitterWhat's News on Twitter

Eversource MA ‏@EversourceMA
Five things you should know about Jim Judge, our new CEO  @BostonGlobe

#CEOoutlook Fact 38: What do US CEOs believe will be the top factors impacting growth? 

Today's Econ Dev legislation for workforce, innovation, and biz development becomes law. Congrats to all involved.

"There’s a lot to like in this bill.” JD Chesloff, Executive Director of MBR

Thank you @MassGovernor @MassLtGov @SpeakerDeLeo @SenStan for signing the Energy Bill!

Roundtable member @natixis awards annual $5,000 scholarships to two aspiring jazz musicians

Roundtable member @BerkshireBank awards $1.1 million in grants to nonprofits across New England and New York

BFIT ‏@BFITinvolved
CEO Corner: Advice From Benjamin Franklin Institute via @NECN

Massachusetts EEC @MassEarlyCare
EEC Board Member JD Chesloff on new #EconDev law which incl. funding for workforce skills ed

Will Keyser ‏@willkeyser
In charter schools, more time for learning

The Roundtable is pleased to welcome several new followers on Twitter. Please consider following them.
DONG Energy US @DONGEnergyUS
Ken Donnelly @SenKenDonnelly
Mayor Jim Fiorentini @jimfiorentini 
Springfield Regional Chamber @SpfldRegChamber 
MA Women's Caucus @MAWomensCauc
BC Cybersecurity @BCcybersecurity 
In this issue
MBR’s Fall Board Meeting Features Policy Discussion, Presentation from MassINC Polling Group
MBR Teams Up with Berkshire Business Roundtable for Discussion on Higher Education in Pittsfield
Roundtable Co-Sponsors 13th Annual STEM Summit November 1st at the DCU Center in Worcester
Roundtable Welcomes David Howe, President, J. Derenzo Company
Attorney General Issues Guidance for Businesses Providing Public Accommodations
Roundtable Partners on 7th Annual Jobs & Workforce Summit at Devens
Roundtable Partners with UMass Boston Emerging Leaders Program to Strengthen State’s Talent Pipeline
Going Around the Table
What's News on Twitter
Upcoming events

Jobs & Workforce Summit
8:00 a.m.–4:00 p.m.
Devens, MA
Open to Members & Representatives

Statewide STEM Summit
7:30 a.m.–3:45 p.m.
DCU Center
Worcester, MA

Roundtable Board Meeting
8:00–10:00 a.m.
Location: TBA in Boston
Members only

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