State Announces More Than $182,000 in Historic Preservation Grants

first_imgThe state today announced more than $182,000 in 15 matching grants to projects for the restoration and preservation of historic buildings across Vermont, including two in the town of Windsor, the birthplace of Vermont.Standing in front of the historic Stephen Jacob House, whose owner, Historic Windsor Inc., received a $7,690 grant to install a new roof to protect the building, Deputy Secretary of Commerce and Community Development Jim Saudade congratulated the grant recipients.“These are difficult times, but we are continuing this administration’s commitment to historic preservation,” Saudade said. “Preserving our past is an important part of keeping Vermont a special place not only for our residents, but for the visitors who come and help support our tourism economy.”In addition, the American Precision Museum in Windsor received $8,000 that will be used to help stabilize and repair masonry at the historic brick Robbins & Lawrence Armory building, an important part of the early machine tool industry in Vermont and the nation.The grant program, administered by the Vermont Division for Historic Preservation, provides owners of historic buildings with matching funding of up to $15,000 for a variety of capital repairs.Saudade said the grant program is “an investment that helps leverage additional funding sources.”“By partnering with state government, the owners of these buildings can invest in saving them, both for the current enjoyment of residents and visitors, and for future generations of Vermonters,” he said.Judy Hayward, executive director of Historic Windsor Inc., agreed. She noted that her organization had only purchased the Stephen Jacob House, which is historically significant for a court case that upheld Vermont’s constitutional ban on slavery, with the help of a donation last year.“This is an important grant because it is our initial funding and now we can begin the process of fundraising for the restoration,” Hayward said. “It is a lot easier to make that ask when someone has agreed to go first.”Buildings must be on the National Register of Historic Places or eligible for listing, and grant requests are reviewed by the Vermont Advisory Council on Historic Preservation, a group of volunteers appointed by the Governor whose members include experts in archeology, history, and architecture.In making decisions on funding, the Council prioritizes projects based on several criteria, including those most in critical need of repair.“We’re just exceeding grateful to the Division for this grant,” said Cher Laston, a representative of the Washington Unitarian Universalist Church, which received $8,150 to help pay for the installation of a new standing-seam metal roof on the historic church.“We are a tiny congregation, there are 15 active members,” she said. “This is the piece that will ensure our building still stands, so we can continue to do the good work that’s been part of its 158 years of history.”For more information, visit the Division for Historic Preservation site at: is external)last_img read more

Crafting a purpose-driven brand

first_img 2SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Charlotte Boutz-Connell Charlotte brings over 12 years of experience in account management, brand strategy, and consumer insights development to guide positive outcomes for clients. She is passionate about storytelling to connect brands … Web: Details For Mennonite Savings and Credit Union (MSCU), a faith-based fi­nancial cooperative headquartered in Ontario, Canada, a new name held the hope of con­necting faith and values with finances for more families and businesses in their community.Since its founding in 1964, MSCU’s mission has been putting mutual aid and community im­pact into practice through financial literacy and social justice. But five decades later, and despite expanded membership eli­gibility criteria, asset and capital growth were stalling – while competitive banking and regulatory pressures were growing. By 2015, MSCU was concerned for its future. Growth in assets and membership was declining and, if left unchecked, would reach negative growth within the next decade.“Being a responsible steward, I couldn’t stand by and let us diminish over time.” – Brent Zorgdrager, Kindred retired CEOThrough market research, MSCU identified systemic issues that were barriers to growth, which included its cherished, yet exclusive-sounding name. Of the potential members surveyed, 91% would not consider joining because of the name.In 2015, MSCU leadership recommended a renaming initiative to the board. “Shying away from a name change was not an option if MSCU hoped to be sustainable,” said retired MSCU CEO, Brent Zorgdrager. “While our name was considered an obstacle, reactions to our emphasis on peace, social justice, and mutual aid were admired by survey participants among those people seeking to align their values with their fi­nances.”For full transparency, MSCU announced its renaming initiative to staff and membership. Rea­sons were highlighted, but without a full roadmap and strategy to guide the change, the rationale failed to resonate. Response from staff and members was vocal and emotionally charged, expressing fear of the change and leaving behind MSCU’s most du­rable legacy: the Mennonite name and community and its focus on faith.Successfully managing an emotional brand change: For a new path forward, MSCU leadership began searching for the right strategic partner, selecting Seattle-based branding agency Strum to craft an organization-wide com­munications strategy for the renaming initiative.“We believed MSCU had reached the correct strategic decision to rename with its mem­bers’ and the organization’s long-term interests at heart,” reflects Strum CEO, Mark Weber. “But many members, and even staff, were confused and upset with the idea of change. Our goal was to create and articulate a com­pelling vision that would celebrate, not detract from, the credit union’s rich history and values, and then make that positive case to staff and members.”First, was to reunite staff, leadership, and the board around developing a shared future vision, and to ensure staff felt heard and engaged in the journey and outcomes. Staff was given a voice through a survey and focus groups to rebuild shared ownership and purpose. Participating in a Name and Brand Workshop also helped to align the board and senior leaders, so that a new name and brand platform would support the credit union’s philosophy and future growth goals.Strum recommended that MSCU shift the focus from a name change to rearticulating its overall brand position, with the name being one component of a broader vision.Key to this brand rearticulation was developing a new Purpose Statement:Cooperative banking that connects values and faith with finances, inspiring peaceful, just and prosperous communities. With Strum facilitating, the Brand Team evaluated name options against strategic criteria, such as inclusivity and authenticity. After vetting by a trademark attorney, quantitative research was again conducted to evaluate a short-list of names and their connection with the Purpose Statement.Findings included that the name “Kindred” evoked feelings of warmth, connec­tion, home, and community along with faith-inspired values. More importantly, it embod­ied the credit union’s unique story and values that could resonate broadly with key growth audiences not connected to their faith alone.Unanimously, the board approved Kindred Credit Union as the name to bring forward to a member­ship vote. It also marked a new phase: one of build­ing support and momentum for the change from staff.During the 4th quarter of 2015, an internal survey found that 38% of staff expressed apprehension over the proposed name change, while 62% favored a name change. In response, Strum helped to craft a “Case for Change,” a staff messaging campaign focusing on the vision of a brighter future. Thoughtful messages were delivered in stages, guiding staff through a positive experience of change with clear in­formation. Within months, a follow-up survey found that only 5% of staff expressed concerns, and 95% now favored the change.The communications efforts continued to bear fruit, and the Kindred name was approved by a vote of members. “The name unit­ed members, staff, and stakeholders with a fresh focus, vision, and purpose,” reflects Zorgdrager, “while keeping our rich history and philosophy intact.” Gaining member affirmation was an ex­citing milestone, but the journey to engage people continued.“Delivering a clear vision of a positive future is key to an initiative as sensitive as naming.” – Mark Weber, Strum CEOA staff celebratory and education event, “Letting Our Light Shine,” guided stakeholders in shar­ing the Kindred brand with members. Strum’s “Brand Camp” followed, attended by staff and leadership. “Our goal was for everyone to speak the same language, to become brand ambas­sadors, and to learn how each person is vital to delivering the credit union’s brand promise,” explains Weber. In the two years following the rebranding, Zorgdrager notes that the credit union experienced 200% annual­ized new member growth, without losing a single member, and the highest growth in loans, deposits, and mutual funds – ever.From fear of decline to letting their light shine even brighter, Kindred Credit Union’s focus on telling a bigger vision of their brand – first to staff, then to members, and then to the broader community – unlocked their growth potential and opened new avenues to pursue their purpose of mutual aid.last_img read more

Bescos played three sports and coached

first_imgJulian “Julie” Bescos, a multitalented athlete who played and coached three different sports for USC, died May 23 in Long Beach, Calif.. He was 97.Bescos was an eight-time letterman for the Trojans, starring in football, basketball and baseball for his school.On the gridiron, he helped lead USC to a national championship in 1932 and was made team captain in 1934. He was named the basketball team’s most valuable player in 1934 and was twice honored by the All-Pacific Coast Conference Southern Division. The Trojans won their league all three years that he played for the team on the hardwood.As an outfielder, he helped pilot the Trojans to a league title in 1932.Upon graduation, Bescos served as a coach for all three sports at the freshmen and junior varsity level in 1935. He later assisted the varsity football team from 1937 to 1941 and in 1945. As head coach of the men’s basketball team in 1942, he led the Trojans to a 12-8 record, second-best in the league.Bescos was also a Navy veteran who served in World War II and an avid golfer who would later become president of the California and Southern California Golf Association.Bescos is survived by his wife Faye; son Barry; daughters Julianne Gee and Vicki Payne; stepsons John, Steve and Joe Dallas and numerous grandchildren.A public memorial service will be held at 1 p.m. today at Grace First Presbyterian Church, 3955 N. Studebaker Road, Long Beach. In lieu of flowers, his family requests that donations be made to the Long Beach Cancer League.last_img read more

Fast reaction: 3 takeaways from Syracuse’s 75-50 victory over Middle Tennessee State

first_img Facebook Twitter Google+ Published on March 20, 2016 at 7:13 pm Contact Matt: | @matt_schneidman ST. LOUIS – Tenth-seeded Syracuse (21-13, 9-9 Atlantic Coast) defeated 15th-seeded Middle Tennessee State (25-10, 13-5 Conference USA), 75-50, advancing to the Sweet Sixteen to face No. 11-seed Gonzaga in Chicago next Friday. Michael Gbinije and Tyler Lydon led the Orange with 23 and 14 points, respectively, and SU once again pulled away late for a double-digit win in the NCAA Tournament.Here are three quick observations from Syracuse’s Round of 32 win over the Blue Raiders.Pulling awayGiddy Potts finally found his stride and the nation’s leading 3-point shooter by percentage knocked down two deep balls to start the second half after going 1-for-3 in the first 20 minutes. But with Syracuse only up two, Michael Gbinije scored seven consecutive points to give the Orange a nine-point lead that never dipped below that.Gbinije hit two runners in the lane that both softly bounced several times on the rim before falling. Then as Frank Howard dribbled atop the key and motioned with his eyes for Gbinije to go to the corner, the freshman executed a drive-and-kick that Gbinije finished with a contested 3-pointer.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textThe fifth-year senior finished with a team-high 23 points on 10-of-14 shooting. His 34th consecutive game in double digits was capped off by a 3-pointer from the top of the key at the end of Syracuse’s last possession. He once again guided the Orange to a win, this time one that matches it up with the Bulldogs with only 16 teams left playing.Heads upFor a 10-minute stretch in the second half, Tyler Roberson sat in between assistants Adrian Autry and Mike Hopkins on the bench with his white NCAA-issued warmup shirt on.Just before he exited, Roberson knocked his head on the floor after Lydon fell on top of him trying to corral a rebound. Roberson turned over on his butt and grimaced while holding his head before being subbed out.Until that point, the junior had grabbed nine rebounds and scored 10 points. He made three of his four shots from the field and hit all four foul shots, while dominating the glass a la his rebounding tirade against Dayton.His rebounds came in a variety of ways – one tipping a ball to himself at the peak of a scrum, one chasing after a loose ball by himself, one mounting Aldonis Foote before holding onto the ball will one hand and untangling the other.Roberson re-entered with 2:45 remaining and put an exclamation point on Syracuse’s 35-point win by finishing an alley-oop from Malachi Richardson in the final minute while Richardson saluted to the crowd.Long shotMiddle Tennessee, a team that came in to Sunday 14th in the country in 3-point field-goal percentage, posted a meager 3-for-11 mark from deep in the first half. And despite finishing the game 8-of-24 from behind the arc after a stronger second half, the Orange stymied the Blue Raiders from deep for the majority of the game.It’s ring leader from beyond the arc, Potts, hit 3-of-6 from deep, but he was stifled by Orange defenders quick to close out when he received the ball beyond the arc.The Orange did that on most MTSU shooters and while it opened up some gaps for the Blue Raiders to feed inside with only one SU defender in the post, it limited the Blue Raiders in the area it relies on most. Commentslast_img read more

Kotoko feel hard done by FA Cup Committee’s decision

first_imgDeputy Communications Director for Kumasi Asante Kotoko, Solomon Ofosu Ware, believes the FA Cup committee wants to frustrate his side following the decision to allow their game against Real 24 Hours to go ahead at the Tumu Park.Kotoko’s attempt to have the venue changed proved futile as the FA Cup committee rejected Kotoko’s plea for a change of venue.For Ofosu Ware, these are attempts are made to frustrate the Porcupine.“It seems the FA cup committee want to frustrates Kotoko because if you look at our schedule, we have to drive from Kumasi to Tumu and come back, prepare and travel to Dawu for our match against Dreams FC,” he told Asempa Sports“When the draw was made, we were made aware that the match will be played at Wa so why are they now pushing it to Tumu because in our match against AK Shion, their pitch did not meet the requirement of the licensing board so the match was moved from their home grounds to Sunyani.”“If you look at the pitch where the match will be played, it is really horrible but as for us we don’t want to have any problem with the FA because we all want the betterment of our league but our problem is that, Kotoko is a big club and we should be treated with respect.” “We will meet today at our office and take our final decision on the match before Saturday.”Kotoko beat Shion on penalties to reach the round of 32 stage. –Follow Joy Sports on Twitter: @JoySportsGH. Our hashtag is #JoySportslast_img read more

Fortuna fends off Arcata, earns spot in H-DNL championship

first_imgWith a successful penalty shot by Sarah Killfoil seven minutes before the half, the Fortuna High girls soccer team regained its confidence, enabling a 3-1 victory over visiting Arcata in the second semifinal game of the Humboldt-Del Norte League tournament, Thursday night at Fortuna High School.The No. 2 seeded Huskies (13-2-1) will face the No. 1 Eureka Loggers (15-0) in the H-DNL championship match on Saturday at 11 a.m., at Albee Stadium. Arcata (9-5-1) will join St. Bernard’s in the wait …last_img read more

Four reasons the Raiders scored only 16 points against NFL’s worst defense

first_imgThe Raiders ran for a sole first down, their fewest first downs via the ground all season.“We were two possessions behind at the end of the half and we had two-minute opportunities, and then we had some two-minute opportunities at the end of the game,” Gruden said. “We fumbled the ball on a running play. We had some penalties. We were unable to convert on third down. We’ve got to run the ball more, and we’ve got to run the ball better. But it’s hard to function right now with a lot of the moving parts that we have. It’s a credit to our team for moving the ball and keeping us in the game.”Derek Carr underthrew Jordy Nelson on would-be touchdownLate in the third quarter with the Raiders trailing 20-10, the Bengals’ coverage collapsed. Jordy Nelson streaked down the right sideline with nobody in the same zip code, and he looked primed to bring the Raiders within three points and finally spark an offense that had been stagnant for the majority of the first three quarters.But Carr’s throw, instead of leading Nelson into the end zone, forced him to come back on the ball and make a sliding catch at the Bengals’ 7-yard line.“You should get points, more than three in that situation,” Gruden said.A false start each from rookie left tackle Kolton Miller and rookie right tackle Brandon Parker and two incompletions later, the Raiders settled for a Daniel Carlson 27-yard field goal. Normally these Raiders will take any 44-yard gain they can get, but the fact this one didn’t go for 51 yards actually made a difference in the Raiders’ comeback quest.“In hindsight, absolutely,” Carr said when asked if he wanted that throw back. “He started digging as soon as I threw it. I was trying to just put it on him. He was digging and looked back. I wish I threw a downfield ball. In my mind, I didn’t want to overthrow this. I’ve seen that happen too many times. It happened to the Bengals earlier in the game. You never want to miss those.”Carr completed only 55 percent of his passes against the Bengals. (Photo by John Grieshop/Getty Images)Bengals took away Raiders’ best playerAside from a two-catch, 10-yard day against the Seahawks in Week 6 and a two-catch, 20-yard game against the 49ers in Week 9, Jared Cook had his least effective game of the season against the Bengals with only two catches for 23 yards.Cook logged back-to-back seven-catch, 100-plus-yard games in the two games prior to Sunday’s, but the Bengals were successful in nullifying the Raiders’ best player.“There were a couple of plays I missed him,” Carr said. “There was one on the fumble I was looking for him. There were a lot of times he was doubled, but they didn’t show it. We had to go to other guys in those circumstances. They did a good job of mixing it up. He did a good job on his routes, though. I didn’t have enough time on it. They did a good job, but I think if we had a couple more seconds, we could have hit him.”Cook declined an interview after the game, so we didn’t get to hear from him on what the Bengals did to cause him fits. Instead of relying on their team-leader in catches (63), receiving yards (848) and receiving touchdowns (six) as they often do, the Raiders leaned on a host of others that didn’t do much as 17 of Carr’s 38 passes fell incomplete.“They did a good job. Obviously we didn’t have much time there at times,” Gruden said of Cook’s quiet day. “We were looking for him in some passing situations and we struggled. I think you can see that.”Makeshift offensive line played like oneIt’s no surprise the Raiders’ offensive line resembled Swiss cheese against the Bengals. They started fourth- and fifth-string guards Chaz Green and Denzelle Good with injuries to starters Kelechi Osemele and Gabe Jackson and backup left guard Jon Feliciano. The only surprise was rookie left tackle Kolton Miller, now healthy, played the worst of any of them after a string of sturdy outings sicne he overcame a lingering knee issue.Miller’s biggest gaffe came midway through the first quarter, when Bengals defensive end Sam Hubbard blew by him, rocked Carr on his blind side and forced a fumble the Bengals recovered. Miller played next to his fourth left guard of the year on Sunday, with Green joining Osemele, Feliciano and Justin Murray.“It wasn’t too challenging,” Miller said of working next to yet another left guard. “As long as our point was right and communicating didn’t make it too big of a deal. They’re great, great guys … Definitely a big year to learn from and grow from. Really that’s the only thing you can do.”Carr weathered five sacks on Sunday, bringing his season total to 47, alone with the third-most sacks taken among quarterbacks this season. His previous single-season high was 31 sacks taken in 2015. In the last two season combined, Carr went down only 36 times with some of the NFL’s best offensive lines. Safe to say his protection in 2018 is among the league’s worst.“We’re working with our fourth and fifth guards,” Carr said. “They did a great job. We didn’t change the plan. We did what we normally did, and they were able to play with it. There are a few plays we want back, but for the most part they did a really good job.” CINCINNATI — One glance at the Paul Brown Stadium stands revealed how little this game mattered for either team. The crowd, despite being announced at over 44,000 (yeah, right) filled less than half the stadium. The product on the field, especially from the visitors, was equally uninspiring.The Bengals started a quarterback who can’t throw the ball accurately – Jeff Driskel tallied 19 incompletions compared to 14 completions – yet his offense still plastered 30 points on the Raiders. Against the only defense worse than their own in the NFL, the Raiders only mustered 16 points themselves.If anything, the No. 1 pick remained within reach with two games left as the Raiders fell to 3-11 thanks to an inept offense that they’ve seen all too often this season. But where did the gunslinging Derek Carr of recent weeks go?Here are four reasons the Raiders couldn’t get anything going against a team that allowed a league-worst 30.5 point per game in their first 13 games. Raiders unable to establish ground gameOf course stats don’t mean everything, but the Bengals allowed 148.1 yards per game on the ground entering Sunday. You’d think the Raiders would be able to drum up something on the ground, even with two backup guards and a backfield that shouldn’t strike fear into anyone. Yet the Raiders only ran for 68 yards, their fourth-lowest total of the season, and their longest run of the game came on a 21-yard sweep to their fourth-string tight end in the first quarter.“There’s no excuse,” starting running back Doug Martin said when asked why the Raiders weren’t able to generate anything on the ground. “We have two guards down. I have to carry the flag and I couldn’t get rolling the way I wanted to. We didn’t have it today.”Martin ran for 39 yards on nine carries. Darren Waller had the one sweep for 21 yards. Jalen Richard carried four times for 9 yards and lost a fumble. DeAndre Washington ran once for a single yard and Seth Roberts’ end-around went for a loss of 2. The Raiders ran 16 times total, their second-fewest carries in a game this season, ahead of only their 13 rushes against the Chargers in Week 5.last_img read more

Brad Pitt’s Foundation Plans a Project in Montana

first_imgBrad Pitt’s Make It Right foundation will try to make a dent this year in a housing shortage at Fort Peck, a 2-million-acre Native American reservation in Montana where housing is in such short supply that some families sleep in shifts.The actor’s foundation, which got its start constructing 150 houses in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina clobbered the city’s Lower Ninth Ward, will start on 20 LEED-Platinum homes later this year. The foundation also helped fund projects in Newark and Kansas City.The new houses at Fort Peck will have three or four bedrooms and two or three bathrooms. They will be rented to tribal members whose incomes are at or below 60% of the median income in the area, according to the foundation’s announcement. Ownership will transfer to the tenants after 15 years.The project was launched last year with design meetings between architects and members of the Sioux and Assiniboine tribes at Fort Peck, located in Poplar, Montana. Foundation spokeswoman Taylor Royle described the sessions, and the situation at Fort Peck, in in a series of blogs last year.“Hundreds of people are on a waiting list for the poor quality homes that exist,” Royle wrote. “We hear stories from people who have nine families living in a five-bedroom home and take ‘sleeping shifts’ to share the limited beds.”The reservation, described by The Washington Post as a bleak backwater in an article last year, has an unemployment rate of more than 50% and widespread drug and alcohol problems. The houses will be solar-poweredThere will be five house designs in all. Although Royle didn’t have a lot of specifics about the buildings, Make It Right aims for the “highest standards in green buildings” that reflect “Cradle to Cradle” objectives.Among features typically found in Make It Right houses are advanced framing to minimize the use of wood and allow more insulation, interior finishes with reduced volatile organic compounds, indigenous landscaping adapted to the environment, and photovoltaic panels.Royle said the Fort Peck homes would be “solar powered,” but it wasn’t clear whether that meant they would be net-zero energy designs. Insulation and mechanical systems, she said, would depend on the particular house. Some will be stick-built and others will be modular.A number of companies are donating building materials, including Shaw Floors, Cosentino (quartz surfaces), Benjamin Moore, Unico (small-duct heating and air conditioning), and Leviton (electrical devices).Architects and designers represented GRAFT, Sustainable Native Communities Collaborative, Architecture for Humanity, Method Homes and Living homes.last_img read more