Leadership Pioneer Valley Unveils 5th Anniversary Class

37 Emerging Leaders Participating

HOLYOKE, MA — Leadership Pioneer Valley (LPV) officially kicked-off their program and introduced the Class of 2017 on Sept. 27 at the Wistariahurst Museum in Holyoke at 5:30 pm at its annual Reach Beyond Reception. The reception marked the inception of an intensive, ten-month regional leadership development curriculum for the new cohort. This year marks the 5th Anniversary of Leadership Pioneer Valley.

LPV’s regional leadership development program annually features a diverse class from Hampden, Hampshire, and Franklin Counties—representing private, nonprofit, educational and public organizations. This year’s class includes 37 emerging leaders from the Pioneer Valley that filled the room with energy, enthusiasm, and commitment to the future of the region.

“The LPV Class of 2017 represents the future of our region,” commented Leadership Pioneer Valley Executive Director, Lora Wondolowski. “They bring a wide variety of backgrounds and skills to bear while all of them are committed to deepening their community involvement. With LPV in their toolboxes, they will go far.”

Leadership Pioneer Valley addresses the critical need to build a diverse network of leaders who aspire to work together across traditional barriers to strengthen the region. The region-specific curriculum is designed to help the participants refine their leadership skills, broaden connections, and develop a greater commitment to community trusteeship and inclusion within the Pioneer Valley.

In January of 2014, Class of 2014 member Isabel Serrazina passed away suddenly.  To honor her memory and leadership, fellow-class members, alumni, and the board created the Serrazina Scholarship Fund to enable potential participants to attend LPV.  This year’s annual Serrazina Scholarship was awarded to Intiya Isaza-Figueroa, who works for Home City Housing to provide housing for low-income individuals and families.  Intiya embodies Isabel Serrazina’s longtime work on low-income housing issues in Springfield.

LPV Class of 2017 Participants

Galina Abashina of Westfield Jewish Family Service of Western MA
Ryan Barry of Easthampton Bulkley Richardson & Gelinas LLP
Latoya Bosworth of Chicopee Springfield Public Schools
Chelan Brown of Springfield MGM Springfield
Drew Christensen of E. Longmeadow MassMutual
Sarah Crouse of Granby Appleton Corp
Tasheena Davis of Springfield City of Springfield
Morgan Drewniany of Westfield Springfield Cultural District
Patrick Egan of Longmeadow YWCA
James Farrell of Chicopee Health New England
Jillian Ferguson of Northampton Chicopee Office of Community Development
Melissa Fernette of Greenfield Baystate Franklin Medical Center
Dawn Gatzounas of S. Hadley Cooley Dickinson Hospital
Emily Gaylord of Easthampton Center for Ecological Technology
Johnathan Griffin of Greenfield UMass Amherst
Gillian Hinkson of Springfield State of MA
Mark Hudgik of Hadley Greenfield Community College
Justin Hurst of Springfield Self-employed
Intiya Isaza-Figueroa of Holyoke Home City Housing
Kimberly Lavallee of E. Longmeadow Greater Springfield YMCA
Yaileen Medina of Springfield MassMutual
Daniel Nietsche of Greenfield Franklin Regional Council of Governments
John O’Leary of Westwood Pioneer Valley Planning Commission
Julia Ortiz of Springfield Springfield Housing Authority
Katherine Person of Easthampton Veterans Inc.
Karen Pohlman of Northampton Baystate Health
William Reichelt of West Springfield Town of West Springfield
Jessica Roncarati-Howe of Chicopee Chicopee Chamber of Commerce
Kristine Rose of Holyoke Mount Holyoke College
Daniel Schwarting of Longmeadow ISO New England
Jill Scibelli of E. Longmeadow Baystate Health
Jane Sicard of Holyoke Baystate Health
Renee Tastad of Holyoke Holyoke Community College
Giselle Vizcarrondo of Springfield Self-employed
Bianca Walker of Chicopee Alzheimer’s Association
Laura Walsh of Springfield City of Springfield
Brian Westerlind of Agawam The Markens Group, Inc


About Leadership Pioneer Valley:
The mission of Leadership Pioneer Valley is to identify, develop and connect diverse leaders to strengthen the region. Formed in 2010 to fill a critical need for a leadership program that builds a network of emerging leaders to address the challenges and opportunities of the region, Leadership Pioneer Valley combines both classroom and hands-on, experiential learning at different locations throughout the Valley. The curriculum is designed to foster the skills, collaboration, and commitment needed to further a vibrant and culturally competent Pioneer Valley. The inaugural class launched in the fall of 2011.