Jeanne Abate, Westerly Community Credit Union
Jeanne Abate graduated from Community College of RI, Phi Theta Kappa, with an Associate’s Degree in Management. Additionally Jeanne graduated from the Credit Union National Association Management School, University of Wisconsin with honors. She was selected to Who’s Who in Rhode Island, and also served on the YMCA Capital Campaign Committee and continues to be an American Cancer Society, and Multiple Sclerosis Society Volunteer.
Westerly Community Credit Union -13 years - responsible for mortgage originations; Strategic Planning Committee - past committee member; Credit Committee - past committee member; Asset and Liability Committee - past committee member
Chariho Rotary Club: past Treasurer, past Secretary, past President, Paul Harris Fellow
Rotary International District 7950: past Assistant District Governor, Conference Committee, Rotary Youth Leadership Awards Committee, Group Study Exchange Committee, Future Visioning Team Facilitator, District Membership Committee Area Representative
Board of Realtors: Publicity Committee, Professional Development Committee, Education Committee, Golf Tournament Committee
South Kingstown Chamber of Commerce: Board of Directors, various committees
Special Olympics World Games: Opening and Closing Ceremonies Team, Assistant to World Athletes
Renee Bailey, Savings Institute Bank and Trust
Renee Bailey currently resides in CT with her fiancé Mark, son Tyler, and newest addition to the family, their dog Buster. Renee is a Customer Service Representative at Savings Institute Bank and Trust in the Westerly Office and was recently nominated to participate in the Successor’s program for Assistant Branch Manager. She is currently enrolled for her Associate’s degree in Business Administration Management at Three Rivers Community College. Renee feels it is very important to being an active part in her local community. She enjoys serving as a Lion in Westerly Lions Club, an Allied Board member of the Misquamicut Business Association (MBA), a committee member of the Social and Advisory committee and Chairman of Community Service committee for Westerly Young Professional Network (WYPN). Renee previously served as a Delegate Board member for the Rhode Island Lions Children with Cancer Foundation (RILCCF), a PR committee member for Stand Up for Animals (SUFA), and also participated as team captain for the Westerly Relay for Life for 2010-2012.
Martha Ball, Block Island Times
Like many islanders, Martha never intended to stay here. She was born and raised on the island, graduated from the Block Island School and Drew University. She returned “for a bit” after college. That was 45 years ago.
Whether this is through her work on the zoning board, Democratic Town Committee, Harbor Church, Historical Society, Tourism Council, Historic District Commission, Southeast Lighthouse Foundation or on the Town Council, Martha demonstrates her genuine love of community and understanding of island history.
She especially enjoys her work as a columnist at the Block Island Times where her pieces focus on historical preservation, conservation and our special sense of place, and at Malcolm Greenaway’s Gallery where she is surrounded by stunning views of the island she loves and cares for so much.
I have been a Lighting Designer for the last forty years. Beginning with ballet and opera, continuing with theatre and progressing toward architectural lighting with my company, Light Resource & Design. From Brown University’s Smith-Buonanno Hall, the House and Senate chambers at the Rhode Island State House, South Kingston’s Land Trust building, Central Congregational Church in Providence to numerous private residences, many churches and commercial enterprises – lighting has been my profession.
There is always an easy answer to a problem. But the good, the best, answer takes argument and push and simmer. A collaborative meeting of creative minds is both the challenging and rewarding outcome of this process. Keeps one young.
Maribeth Carcieri, Benefitness
Maribeth is a true leader for women in business. She has been instrumental in developing the "Krystal Shoe" brand since its incarnation.
After taking over the resort boutique in 2006, Maribeth has transition what once was a seasonal store to a full year round retail experience. Expanding the store's collections to include fashion forward clothing, accessories and jewelry. One notable and very important highlight to mention is Maribeth's devotion to supporting local designers. Alex and Ani, John Medeiros, JoJo Loves You, Kendra Philip, Kiel James Patrick, are among the few. In addition to her work with the boutique Maribeth is also a professional health instructor, as a former ballerina for The Rhode Island State Ballet, Maribeth has gone on to become a personal trainer, working with clients to encourage a stronger body and mind. With over a dozen of certifications under her belt, Maribeth had created and taught hundreds of classes over the past three decades.
Most recently she has be teaching Pilates, TRX, and TotalBarre out of Benefitness in East Greenwich.
As a local retailer Maribeth has come to know many of the local charities and non profits in the surrounding area. No matter how large or small Maribeth has given over $1000 in gift cards annually to support fund raising efforts for these organizations. She is also a strong advocate in training our young women of today, as such she is part of the URI Internship program, training students in the world of retail entrepreneurship. Leaning how to manage day-to-day business, marketing, merchandising and customer service.
•Rochester, NY Native
• L.A., Southern California Area 34 Years
• Restaurants, Banking
• Equestrian, equine training, amateur competition
• Commercial Radio Production, Barzman & Co. Hollywood, CA
• ABC Television Network, Production Manager, On-Air Promotion, Hollywood, CA
• Director, Association For Responsible Communication
• Co-Production, The Entertainment Summit, Los Angeles, CA
• Co-Production, The American-Soviet Film Initiative, Los Angeles, CA
• Partner, Glen Ivy Hot Springs Spa and Glen Ivy Retreat Center, Corona, CA
• Co-Owner, The Villa Bed & Breakfast, Westerly, RI
• Director, South County Tourism Council
• Director, Misquamicut Business Association
• Director, The Greater Westerly-Pawcatuck Area Chamber of Commerce (current)
• Director/Chair, Town of Westerly Economic Development Commission (current)
• Town of Westerly Concerts on the Beach Committee (current)
• Events/Committee Chair: Westerly 9-11-11 Ceremony, Westerly Trolley Launch, Bless Our Beach, Westerly, Hands Along The Sands, Westerly
• Interests: Writing, Community Service, Environmental Affairs, Fishing, Horseback Riding
Linda Closter, Block Island Medical Center
Linda Closter adds nurse to her other titles of wife, mother, grandmother and friend. For over 20 years, Linda has served tirelessly at the Block Island Medical Center, caring for tourists and community members alike. In fact, there have been times when Linda has been the only medical personnel available and she has admirably risen to the occasion to attend to a patient’s needs. Linda delivers chemo, draws blood, and dresses a difficult wounds with equal compassion and calm. Though she may shirk the spotlight, Linda’s loving dedication extends from her nursing responsibilities and paperwork to setting up flu clinics and tidying the office. She often accompanies a patient being flown off island or to the ferry when no family member is present. Linda is always confidential, there to assist and answer any questions, make follow-up phone calls or lend encouragement.
Still, this selfless nurse finds time to be a Lion’s Club member and volunteer for any organization needing her help. Clearly, Linda has always been a bright star on Block Island.
Ann Cook, Washington Trust
Ann started her career with The Washington Trust Company in 1982. She is responsible for managing the daily operations of the Charlestown Branch which includes the daily supervision, management and mentoring of her Branch staff to improve upon their skill set and production, growing the Branch’s deposit base and loan portfolios and representing The Washington Trust Co. in the community. Ann ensures that she and her staff provide superior customer service to current and potential customers.
Ann graduated Magna Cum Laude from Providence College with a Bachelor's of Science Degree in Management. She was a member of the Eta Lambda Chapter of Alpha Sigma Lambda, a national honor society for adult continuing education students. She also holds a diploma from the American Institute of Banking (AIB).
Ann is Secretary of The Washington County FOPA Lodge # 40, is a past board member of the Charlestown Chamber of Commerce serving in a number of capacities, most recently as president. She has provided countless hours of service over the years to assisting at the annual Charlestown Chamber of Commerce Seafood Festival. She is past Secretary of The Frosty Drew Memorial Fund, and RI Center Assisting Those in Need.
She volunteers each year for officer “Care Days” through her employment at The Washington Trust Co., has participated in “Teaching Kids to Save” and “Learning About Credit” at several community schools.
Ann and her husband also own their own business and she volunteers her time as secretary and treasurer on two boards associated with their business.
Ann was a recipient of South County Hospital’s 7th Annual Thanksgiving Tuesday Award in 2007. The award recognizes extraordinary people who have touched the lives of southern Rhode Islanders dedicating their time, resources and special talents to assist organizations throughout South County.
Ann has also received the President’s Volunteer Service Award each year since 2005 in recognition of the number of hours and valuable contributions she has provided to her community.
Dawn retired to Charlestown in 1999, having lived in New York all her life up to then. She volunteered at the Charlestown Chamber during the summer for about three years, directing visitors to area locations, and volunteered at the Seafood Festival for 10 years. Dawn served as Frosty Drew Nature Center and Observatory secretary for three years, where she worked to establish the Sea Star Marketplace (a major fundraiser for Frosty Drew) for three years. That involved contacting businesses and organizations for sponsorship, contacting artists for their participation, contacting food vendors and entertainment venues. Dawn was instrumental in establishing Evenings at the Sky Theatre, whereby local speakers were invited to give talks and presentations having to do with their expertise. She participated with others from Frosty Drew in the Clean the Beach endeavor. Dawn is also associated with the Charlestown Historical Society where she scheduled docents for the Schoolhouse and assisted in their tag sale. Dawn introduced the monthly Senior Lunch Program at St. Andrews Lutheran Church, where she also assisted with the church summer camp for 10 years, and has been involved with the Food Pantry on a monthly basis for more than eight years. She also assists with the assembly and distribution of Thanksgiving and Christmas baskets.
Some describe Lori Delfosse as a Renaissance Woman, from championed sail racer, accomplished artist, Kundalini yoga instructor and Reiki Master, to a keen marketing and salesperson, philanthropist, compassionate nurse, healthcare expert and life consultant. Lori carries a commonality through all her experiences, while always striving to learn more, she seeks the magic in every moment.
“Our perception of an experience is just that, a PERCEPTION. It’s our choice how we perceive our reality,” she tells us.
Lori loosely applies Albert Einstein’s Theory of Relativity as the most profound concept that has influenced her outlook on life. “It’s all relative.”
She asks, “How do you want to perceive this very moment? Boring or an exciting adventure? You choose. It’s that simple.”
Lori smiles at those who enjoy challenging our life experiences. She declares, “It’s all good no matter what. Even through adversity we gain. We gain new knowledge about others and ourselves. Every moment is a learning moment. The nice experiences are easy. It’s the adverse experiences that are our richest learning opportunities.”
She expresses gratitude at every corner and every door closed or opened anew.
George Dodge, Block Island Services
George’s family has lived on the island for 12 generations. He and his wife Nancy live on the family homestead built in the 1800’s where his four children have enjoyed countless summers. George is a retired chief engineer having served on merchant marine vessels. He manages his own business Block Island Services and is a member of the Block Island Residents Association and served on the 350 Committee. He is also a past recipient of the BI Tourism Award.
George’s love of the beach is surpassed only by his generosity and love of music. Ten years ago, this became the seed for an idea to garner sponsorship for Blues On The Block. George acquires the sponsors, arranges travel and lodging, distributes advertising and frequently supports the free concerts out of his own pocket. All because George believes in the magic of music and dance on a warm summer night.
Marguerite Donnelly loves the Block Island community she has lived in most of her life after a detour for college and a NYC job as a decorative painter. Now driving a cab in the summertime, the spirited Marguerite is known for her cheerful tours filled with the island’s history. Mostly, this one- woman wonder takes care of the community in big and small ways and rarely takes credit for her loving efforts. Perhaps the best example is Marguerite’s work at the senior citizen lunches held weekly off-season, serving and socializing as they enjoy their meals. She has kept this commitment selflessly for years.
Similarly, she volunteers at a local food pantry and served on the Senior Advisory Committee, planning activities through the long winter. Always quick with a smile, Marguerite has a gift for pairing the right people with the needed resources and remains 100% confidential, tirelessly, quietly, year after year.
Beth Eckel, Washington Trust
Beth, a Westerly, RI resident, is Senior Vice President of Marketing and Investor Relations and has more than 25 years of professional marketing experience. She is responsible for developing marketing and brand strategy for Washington Trust and its subsidiaries, including advertising, market research, product development, web site, social media and public relations activities. Beth also coordinates investor relations activities with the shareholder and investment communities. She oversees the Bank’s community giving and employee volunteerism program.
Beth is a Boston College graduate with a bachelor's degree in Marketing, and also earned a master's degree in business with honors from the University of Rhode Island. She is a graduate of the American Bankers’ Association's School of Bank Marketing, the Graduate School of Banking, and earned designation as a Certified Financial Marketing Professional. Beth is a graduate of Leadership Rhode Island’s Alpha II Class of 2005.
Beth is active in a number of national, State and local organizations. She currently serves as a member of the Miriam Hospital Foundation Board of Governors, the Cox Charitable Foundation Committee, and The Prout School Development Advisory Committee. She also serves as a board member and Treasurer of the Ocean Community YMCA swim team, Westerly-Pawcatuck branch. She is an advisory board member of the Domestic Violence Resource Center of South County and a Community Advisory member for the Junior League of Rhode Island. Beth previously served as a member of the Rhode Island Go Red for Women Executive Leadership Team and as board member for the RI Chapter of the American Red Cross. She previously served as a board member and Treasurer of Grantmaker’s Council of RI and Westerly Area Youth Lacrosse. She is a member of the ABA Bank Marketing Network and the New England Financial Marketing Association. Beth serves as speaker, instructor, and guest lecturer at conferences, colleges, and seminars.
Darlene Evan, Evans Business Services Inc.
Life long work and dedication with the Girl Scouts positively influencing the lives of young girls and women, animal rescue efforts, and volunteer giving attitude. She raised money through the Dublin Race for Leukemia & Lymphoma. Darlene worked for the businesses in the South County area as a chamber director and CEO during a time they constructed their building. She did this all by supporting and growing her and her husband’s business, Evans Business Services Inc., serving well other local entrepreneurs in southern RI.
Linda Gagnon, Neighbors Helping Neighbors
Neighbors Helping Neighbors, RI, is a startup non-profit organization helping to identify community needs that will improve the quality of life of residents in southern Rhode Island.
After volunteering at a community dinner in Westerly, Linda and her team wanted to develop a similar dinner in Charlestown. After doing a significant amount of research, Linda took to lead on finding a venue and kitchen suitable for hosting a community dinner. After meeting with Town Officials, the Town of Charlestown very quickly agreed that the perfect location would be the Community Center in Ninigret Park. Linda led the team of volunteers to create the Family Supper Table. Once a month, they offer a free meal for our community’s needy residents.
The restaurant style approach has been a huge success. We have white linen tablecloths and flowers on the table. Our guests are guaranteed service with a smile from one of our many volunteer groups. Our servers range from a Chariho Culinary Arts student, a local Girl Scout, a young boy from a youth soccer team, a member of a local book club, someone from your US Post Office and even one of your local law enforcement officers. The meals we serve are top notch thanks to the many generous restaurants and local chefs. Our dinners are well attended with an average of seventy guests per evening.
Seychelle Hoffer, Atlantic Animal Hospital and Wellness Center
Dr. Seychelle Hoffer is a native of Massachusetts, and a 2001 graduate of Tufts Veterinary School. She moved to Rhode Island in 2003, and practiced at various hospitals before settling in South County as the owner and head veterinarian at Atlantic Animal Hospital & Wellness Center in Charlestown. A certified veterinary acupuncturist, Dr. Hoffer integrates traditional medicine with acupuncture and Chinese herbs when treating her patients.
Aside from her passion for veterinary medicine, Dr. Hoffer is an avid yoga practitioner, and also loves horseback riding, reading, and training for triathlons. She hangs her stethoscope in Hopkinton with her husband Dave, their two daughters, and an ever-growing menagerie of animals.
Steven King, Quonset Development Corporation
Steven J. King. P.E. is a professional civil engineer who was appointed Managing Director of the Quonset Development Corporation (QDC) in July 2008. As head of the QDC, Mr. King is responsible for the development and operations of the 3,207 acre Business Park. Quonset Business Park is now comprised of more than 175 companies, with 9,500 people working at the Park and its Port of Davisville, which is one of the top ten auto importers in North America.
Mr. King is a graduate of URI with a BS in Civil Engineering. He is an Army ROTC graduate and served on active duty in the US Army from 1988-1992, including the Persian Gulf War. He serves on the advisory committee for the Civil Engineering Department at URI; served on the board of the North Kingstown Chamber of Commerce; and is a member of the RI Society of Professional Engineers, VFW, and American Legion, to name a few.
James LeDonne, Almafi Fine Cataerers
James Vincent LeDonne is the General manager and co-founder of award winning Amalfi Catering. James has over 25 years of extensive fine catering experience with Marriott, Sheraton and Westin Hotels, along with several privately owned catering venues across the United States. His passion for fine catering has been instrumental throughout his very successful career. His unique talent for creating many successful catering venues have provided him with a very rich background. James has the rare combined qualities of an artist, event planner, and special knack for making his clients feel they are the ultimate quests. His extraordinary and discerning work reflects the elegant service of time gone by. James has taken on many highly demanding catering projects requiring complex planning and coordination to fill his successful career in the hospitality field. J. Vincent cordially invites you to experience the Amalfi difference. Amalfi has provided exquisite off site catering throughout Rhode Island for over 10 years. Corporate office is located inside the Village Inn Hotel at Narragansett Pier.
Amalfi’ newest business path the re-opening of The Narragansett Pier Theater feathering Amalfi Comedy Spotlight, Mini Broadway Plays, The Rocky Horror Picture Show, and more. Amalfi is South County’s Premier destination venue for elegant affairs by the bay.
Derek Lombard, Embrace Home Loans
Derek Lombard Serves as Director of Human Resources and Vice President at Embrace Home Loans. As Director, Derek oversees the compensation, benefits, recruiting, training, licensing, community outreach, and cultural activities for over 500 employees.
Derek graduated from Harvard University with a B.A. degree in Government from Harvard University and a M.S. degree in Human Resources Development from Villanova University.
Derek has served most recently as president of the Westerly Youth Soccer Association, where he continues to coach at the recreation and competitive level, and treasurer of the SHRM Rhode Island Chapter. Derek is a long-term member of the Pink & Green Committee which is part of the local YMCA’s “Reach-Out to Youth” campaign and a 2013 graduate of Leadership Rhode Island.
Pam Lyons, Ocean House Marina
Pam Lyons has lived in Charlestown with her husband Rob, and two children at their family business, Ocean House Marina, for thirty-one years. During that time she became active in local school committees, church programs and non-profit organizations, along with the renovation of their historic property, the Ocean House, which served as the town's first meeting hall in 1848.
More recently she served on the board of the South County Tourism Council from 2008 to 2011, the Charlestown Land Trust from 2007 to present, and the Charlestown Historical Society for the past 28 years. She became President of the Charlestown Historical Society in 2007, and at that time she volunteered to undertake the building of Charlestown's first archival facility in order that the town would have a permanent place to house their historical artifacts and reference materials for future preservation and public viewing.
Along with a competent group of board members, she directed this four-year project of numerous fundraising events, state-wide networking and research to build a modest, state-of-the-art structure for Charlestown to call its own and to share with its seasonal visitors. She organized talented and professional local volunteers who gave of their time and expertise and worked with them on a daily basis. She also organized committees to oversee the specific needs of the society, historic town document preservation, artifact research education with the URI Textile Department, networking with other state societies, the Narragansett Tribe, and general public education of Charlestown's rich cultural history.
On June 30, 2013, the Charlestown Historical Society Archive opened to the public. Among its many visitors this year, were families from across the United States looking to find their roots and family ancestry information. The outpouring of appreciation from the community has been overwhelming, and has provided a means for the local residents to come forward and share their histories, old photographs and memoirs of local lore, and has brought forth a broadened community awareness of Charlestown's past for both the young and old.
Along with this project Pam continues her daily commitment to the family business and helping out in the community where need is present. Recently, Pam and her husband have sponsored the local RICAN fundraiser to support and bring awareness to the needs of local community. She is grateful to call South County and Charlestown her home and considers the love of her friends and family her greatest treasure.
Vanessa Miller, Narragansett Pier School
Vanessa feels incredibly lucky to work in Narragansett as a resource consultant, peer coach and facilitator to the students and staff at the Narragansett Pier School, providing interest-based enrichment opportunities and challenging learning experiences outside of the regular curriculum to students, and resources and strategies to assist in the development of differentiated instruction and higher-level thinking skills while collaborating with teachers on the delivery of differentiated instruction; one example being the National History Day Contest. Vanessa also volunteers on the board for the Rhode Island School of the Future, working to increase robotics and STEM in schools throughout Rhode Island.
As part of her responsibilities at the Pier School, Vanessa Miller is the theatrical production manager. Recently, The Narragansett Pier School’s production of The Wiz in March of 2013 was honored with the Moss Hart Award from the New England Theatre Conference for “outstanding theatrical production,” Children and Youth Division.
Adrian Mitchell is a life – long resident of Block Island, a graduate of the Block Island School in a class of 7 graduating students. Adrian has grown up with an acute awareness of its environmental vulnerabilities as well as the challenges the residents face on a daily basis. Always involved in conservation issues, Adrian has collaborated with the Block Island Conservancy and relinquished development rights and granted easements to insure that the 22 acres of his land will be preserved as open space.
Adrian was employed by the Town Highway Department for 37 years and upon his retirement was appointed caretaker of the Nature Conservancy’s green space, which he has been doing for 15 years. Adrian initiated Adrian’s Army, which is a group of volunteers that meets on Wednesdays to work the Greenway Trail maintenance for walkers to enjoy.
Adrian is a charter member of the Block Island Lion’s Club and was active in establishing this group and nurturing it through its formative years. He is a member of the American Legion Post 36, Block Island Yacht Club, and assists the Block Island Easter delivering candy to all the homes on the island.
Adrian is a life time member in the Block Island Volunteer Fire and Rescue Squad and assists them by purchasing the Christmas gifts for all the island children from the 4th grade down to the infants for Santa to hand out over the holiday.
Even though Adrian is a conservative he supports Tourism on Block Island.
Megan Moynihan, Oyster Works
Megan Moynihan, AIA is the founder and design principal at Oyster Works, a Charlestown architecture and project management firm. Megan's Sensibly Green architecture marries traditional design with energy-efficiency. Her work includes:
Year Round Program Center for the Boys Scouts at Camp Yawgoog.
Master Plan and Building Design for the YMCA sailing camp at Camp Fuller.
Corporate headquarters for Estabrook Capital Management and Navigator Holdings.
ï Charlestown Wine and Spirits, Energy Star certified and EPA rated as the most energy efficient retail store in Southern New England.
Flagpole Gardens at Ninigret Park
Megan has a Master of Architecture from Columbia University and is a past Director of AIA Rhode Island. An expert in American painting, she worked at Sothebyís and Christieís
auction houses and owned a private gallery on Madison Avenue. Megan is also an accomplished triathlete, seen here finishing the NYC Triathlon.
Timothy Pelleccione, Pelly's Place
Timothy Pelleccione is the proprietor of Pelly’s Place located in Narragansett, RI. He earned his B.S. in Finance from Fairfield University in 1997. He then returned to his hometown of Narragansett where he began working for American Express Financial Advisors as a financial planner from 1999-2002. In 2003 Timothy decided to follow in his fathers footsteps and opened a restaurant. In 2010 Timothy decided it was time to give back to the people in his community so he co-founded South County Charities; which raises funds for local families in need.
Kirk E. Pickel
Narragansett Lions Club, Past President
Melvin Jones Recipient: Lions International Highest Distinction for community service.
Southern New England Heart Safe Community Foundation, Past Board Member
Assisted with the funding and placement of AEDs in Rhode Island
Station Fire Relief Fund: Organized local event to raise money for victims of Station Fire.
Rhode Island Military Family Relief Fund: Chaired two separate fundraisers raising over $80,000 for Rhode Island Military Families.
Casino Courtyard Project: Facilitated fundraising effort and construction of the Casino Courtyard Project.
The 100 Club of Rhode Island: Non-profit organization providing scholarships and financial aid to the families of Rhode Island active duty police and firefighters. Past President and Chairman of the finance committee
Raymond J. Quinlan, Hi-Tech Profiles, Inc.
Raymond J. Quinlan is the Owner and President of Hi-Tech Profiles, Inc., HTP-Meds, LLC, and co-owner of Hi-Tech Molds, LLC. In this role, Mr. Quinlan oversees the development efforts of over 120 colleagues in Ashaway, Rhode Island. He began this role in 1988.
After serving nearly five years in the U.S. Naval Submarine Force and fifteen years at Davis-Standard of Pawcatuck, Connecticut, Mr. Quinlan spent over 25 years creating and growing how own companies. Over the years, he has looked outside of the box and realized that anything is achievable. He started his first company in a small garage and from there, developed these ideas into three separate companies, employing over 120 employees.
During his tenure as Owner and President, Hi-Tech Profiles has produced tubing, hollow rod and bushing stock. In his HTP-Meds Company, innovative tubing for medical applications have been created and developed for medical manufacturers and contract manufacturers. Within the Hi-Tech Molds Company, molds and support tooling are developed as well as prototypes and production machined components. He is the co-owner of Hopkinton Industrial Park.
Mr. Quinlan and his growing companies have received a number of awards including and not limited to the Citizen of the Year Awards from the State of Rhode Island and the State of Connecticut. He has also received the Corporate Citizenship Award from the Town of Stonington and the Town of Westerly. The Rhode Island Lieutenant Governor’s Award was also presented to Mr. Quinlan for his Enterprising Spirit and Commitment to Hopkinton. Mr. Quinlan was also the recipient of his high school’s Distinguishing Alumni Award in 2005.
Mr. Quinlan lives in Stonington, Connecticut, with his wife, Sherry. They have two grown children and four grandchildren. He has had a long history of community activities with generous contributions and support to numerous youth baseball, soccer and basketball teams as well as teams in the men’s recreational community programs. Mr. Quinlan continues to be a major contributor to the local library foundation, the local fire department and the Pawcatuck Neighborhood Center.
Perry Raso, Matunuck Oyster Bar
This young entrepreneur began his interest in aquaculture when he was 12 years old digging littlenecks, wild-harvesting shellfish, diving for steamers etc. . . . His Oyster journey began in 2002 when he decided to lease 1.3 acres of Potter Pond in RI. Once his Oyster Farm was established he started selling his oysters at Casey Farm in Kingstown RI. Their farm manager saw Perry's niche and suggested that he branch out into local farmers markets. Once Perry started branching out at farmers markets he then began branching out into wholesaling. It was then he was able to create his unique brand of oysters. Today Perry runs his own summer hot spot restaurant, growing locally his own oysters and produces his own farm fresh vegetables.
Today Perry’s Matunuck Oyster Farm consists of seven acres on Potter Pond, arranged in rows underwater. The farm gets seed oysters, just post-larval, from a hatchery in Maine—little
bitty things less than 1 mm— and they go right into a nursery system called an upweller. There they grow in a carefully maintained, safe environment until they are big enough for grow out in
In bags the oysters are sorted by size, as they will be for the rest of their lives. The bags are attached with bungee cords to PVC pipes laid out on the bottom of the pond, and there the baby
oysters will reside, filtering water while crystalizing calcium carbonate to increase their shell size, like rings in a tree determining the age of the oyster. Each row on the underwater farm is organized by size. On average it takes 2 years for oysters to reach marketable size. Perry estimates that there are around 20 million oysters on the farm.
The restaurant came about when the last tenant at the spot on Succotash Road folded. Perry needed the dock to land oysters, once he purchased the building, he decided to use this building as a restaurant as it once was to market his oysters. Today Matunuck Oyster Bar is one
of the busiest seafood restaurants in South County open year round and serves over 600 meals a day, and shucks 1,000's of oysters.
Perry wanted to expand his business even further and he thought "If I can grow oysters then I can grow vegetables." In 2012 Perry decided to grow fresh vegetables to supplement his menu at Matunuck Oyster Bar. On his 7 and 5 acre Farms, Perry grows an assortment of vegetables without synthetic pesticides or fertilizers to serve those who seek locally grown food.
Perry is not only the owner of one of the most popular restaurants in southern Rhode Island, he is a mentor to URI students, serves as a FSA County Committee Alternate, and continues to work with local farmers to learn more. The next step for Perry is to identify varieties of crops
that can be grown most effectively. Perry is currently exploring the options of growing a sea vegetable such as seaweed for salad. His long term goal is to show that aquaculture is a sustainable form of agriculture.
Donna Simmons, Opening Doors for Westerly Children
While running major divisions for fortune 500 companies such as Victoria’s Secret, Avon and Longaberger early in her career and orchestrating corporate turnarounds in her later career, Donna Simmons’ passion today is turning around the futures of Westerly children in need. Co-founding the initiative, ‘Opening Doors for Westerly Children’ under the auspices of United Way of Rhode Island, Donna works to provide books, filled backpacks and afterschool and summer scholarships to ensure that our Westerly children in need don’t fall behind in school just because they lack financial resources. Early efforts are showing great success that children in this program enter the school year ready to learn and contribute.
Lisa Sprague, Town of Block Island
Lisa Sprague was an active member of the Block Island Rescue Squad for 36 years. She, in fact, still holds one of the lowest EMT license numbers in the State. Throughout that time, she estimates that she responded to 5,000+ calls. This does not include the people and animals that have limped into her kitchen over the years.
Lisa epitomizes the concept of volunteer in a small community. The islander’s find her pitching in at church suppers, Senior lunches, baking for every happy and sad occasion, creating vats of potato salad and other fabulous food for the annual Fire Dept. Steak Fry. Lisa is always helping out whenever an extra set of hands or a strong and caring heart is needed.
She is also a full-time Town Employee, working as a public safety dispatcher, a mother of three, a grandmother, and an aspiring poet and photographer. Lisa recently co-edited a poetry anthology, "Where Beach Meets Ocean", celebrating 10 years of the Block Island Poetry project, where she also sits on the executive board.
Lisa truly embodies the heart and soul of the island with her personality and natural leadership within the community.
She is so very grateful to the islanders and spirit of Block Island for allowing her the privilege of serving them.
Nicholas J. Stahl
Out of college in a lousy job market for English majors without particular plans, in 1982 I found a part-time job coordinating Meals-on-Wheels prepared by Westerly Hospital, until something better were to come along.
This introduced me to many of Westerly’s fine people - Jean Ladd from whom I inherited the position, many dedicated volunteers, and the humble meal recipients, among them a gentleman on Pierce Street known simply as “Tomato King.”
Growing with new responsibilities, and working closely with others, has provided many rewarding opportunities to appreciate, participate, and maybe even contribute to life in our Southern Rhode Island.
I’m thankful to have been able to raise my son here, and for the professional and personal relationships formed and developed here, some quickly, some slowly over many years. We’re fortunate to live and to work in these Southern Rhode Island towns, something well worth celebrating from time to time.
Lydia J. Teixeira, High Tech Profiles, Inc.
Born in Westerly, Rhode Island, Lydia J. Teixeira is one of five daughters born to a commercial fisherman of Stonington, CT. Her father, at the age of 37, was killed in a tragic boating accident and she was raised by her widowed mom, a woman who proved to be a great inspiration in Mrs. Teixeira’s life.
Mrs. Teixeira graduated from Stonington High School and was employed by Davis-Standard of Pawcatuck for seventeen years.
In 1988, Mrs. Teixeira joined Hi-Tech Profiles, Inc. and partnered with Raymond J. Quinlan to grow this company into three separate entities. These companies now employ over 120 colleagues in Ashaway, Rhode Island. Hi-Tech Profiles produces tubing, hollow rod and bushing stock. The HTP-Meds Company produces and manufactures innovative tubing for medical applications which are then developed for medical manufacturers and contract manufacturers. Within the Hi-Tech Molds Company, molds and support tooling are developed as well as prototypes and production machined components. She is the co-owner of Hopkinton Industrial Park.
Mrs. Teixeira served on the Greater Westerly-Pawcatuck Chamber of Commerce for six years and is a major contributor to the Pawcatuck Neighborhood Center. She was a contributor of an AED defibrillator for “Safe Futures” (formerly the Women’s Center of Southeastern Connecticut) as well as a contributor to the Ashaway Fire Association, Ashaway Free Library and the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Connecticut.
Mrs. Teixeira has presented at Career Day at the Stonington High School by proving guidance and exploration is essential in career development. Most recently, Mrs. Teixeira was the co-recipient of the 2013 Greater-Westerly/Pawcatuck Chamber of Commerce Athena Award, a prestigious award presented to women who make a difference in the workplace.
Mrs. Teixeira lives in Pawcatuck, Connecticut with her husband, Allan. They have two grown children and three grandchildren. She continues to mentor and coach the women within the business and helps them develop their own careers.
Howard B. Thorp, Thorp & Trainer, Inc. Insurance Agency
The Citadel, the Military College of South Carolina; BS, Business Administration; May 1990
Thorp & Trainer, Inc. Insurance Agency , President
Volunteer Board Membership - Stand Up For Animals (S.U.F.A.)
Board Member , President
Independent Insurance Agents of Rhode Island
Chair Communications committee, Board Member,
Rhode Island Association of Insurance Agents, President
Charlestown, RI Chamber of Commerce
Board Member, Treasurer
Literacy Volunteers of Washington County
Board Member, President
South Shore Center
Carrie Todd, Music Teacher
Carrie Todd has demonstrated selfless service and commitment to the Block Island community through her love of music. Always a student of music, she has studied under Donald Brown, Justin Kolb and Rosalind Chua. As a skilled teacher, she has freely given her time as a member of the Ecumenical Choir for over 35 years and is currently the choir director. She also recently retired as the organist for the Harbor Baptist Church. Yet after her work day managing her business, Carrie teaches piano to second through twelfth grade students with care and skill. She imparts the invaluable skills of patience, organization, persistence and practice. Her students also learn to give back by performing concerts for the Scallop Shell Nursing Home. They are consistently medal winners and Carrie’s reputation has led her to be a competition judge as well. Carrie extends her generosity to the community through her business by donating to fundraisers and island events. Definitely one of our 40 Brightest Stars!
Tristan Payne, Block Island Volunteer Fire Department
Tristan Payne, an island resident for his entire life, has been a member of the Block Island Volunteer Fire Department since the age of 18. He has participated in numerous trainings both on and off the Island in order to better the department as a whole as well as individually. He currently supervises the training of the new and younger potential firemen. Tristan maintains all the equipment, keeps them in good working order, and upgrades them when necessary. Tristan was elected Fire Chief in 2012 and is still serving in that position today.
Safety is the most important aspect which is one of the reasons Tristan enrolled in the EMT Class. His passion has been the Fire and Rescue Department for most of his life and he demonstrates his commitment and service to the Block Island Community every day. Tristan reaches out to the senior citizens in maintaining their smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors, he will go to their homes and change batteries if they can’t do this themselves. The Block Island Fire and Rescue are all volunteer service departments which can be a challenge to find dedicated members. Tristan reaches out to the community to find those who have the same love and dedication to the department as he does.