Inbox [Feb. 14]: News and notes about Action! Worcester and Behavioral Concepts

 Have news you or your group would like to share? Let us know by emailing it to info@worcester.ma. Be sure to include a link to the full release on your site or Facebook page so we can include it and send Sun members your way.

MSGA, Action! Worcester lead conversation on transit-oriented development

Action! Worcester and the Massachusetts Smart Growth Alliance (MSGA) held a networking event Feb. 8 at Lock50 in Worcester to discuss transit-oriented development, walkability, accessibility, and creating great neighborhoods with members of the community. Over 60 people showed up to engage in the conversation representing a wide range of nonprofits, volunteer organizations, businesses and students, with many new introductions and connections made.

The event drew representatives from the city of Worcester, Greater Worcester Community Foundation, WalkBike Worcester, WalkFit, Worcester Business Development Corp., Sustainable Comfort Inc., Lettuce Be Local, Jane Jacobs in the Woo/Worcester Sun, Preservation Worcester, 90.5 WICN, Social Venture Collaborative, students from WPI, Worcester State University and Clark University.

“Having grown up in Worcester and seen the challenges of the ’70s, ’80s and ’90s, I’m thrilled to see the incredible energy and momentum here thanks to emerging leadership at Action! Worcester, WalkBike Worcester, the city and many other partners,” said  MSGA Executive Director Andre Leroux.

Inbox [Jan. 17]: News and notes from Vystar, NHS Holdings, GWCF and Worcester Public Schools

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Vystar to acquire NHS Holdings

Vystar Corporation has signed a letter of intent to acquire assets of NHS Holdings, the exclusive U.S. distributor of Vystar’s Vytex virtually allergen-, VOC- and odor-free natural rubber latex (NRL) foam.

Steve Rotman

NHS was founded in January 2015 by Steve Rotman, now CEO of Vystar, and CEO of Rotmans furniture and carpet store, one of the United States’ largest independent furniture retailers. NHS identifies and brings to market innovative, sustainably sourced, eco-friendly materials and components for use in home furnishings, apparel, and other markets. NHS was instrumental in introducing Vytex foam to manufacturers for use in mattresses and pillows.

NHS is valued at $5 million based on the last round of funding of $750,000 for 15 percent equity in NHS. Vystar proposes to acquire NHS for $1.2 million in restricted stock, a discount of 85 percent from the valuation. NHS’s largest shareholders are major investors and registered insiders of Vystar Corp., thus subject to insider trading restrictions.

Quinsigamond ribbon cutting

The Quad [Oct. 29-Nov. 4]: Four things to know from Assumption, Clark, Becker and QCC

Have campus news you or your college or university organization would like to share? Let us know by emailing it to info@worcester.ma. Be sure to send a link to the full release on your site or Facebook page so we can include it and point Sun members your way.

CNN faith and religion commentator to speak at Assumption

Assumption College will welcome Father Edward Beck, C.P. ’80, CNN’s faith and religion commentator, who will present “Religion, Church and the Media: A Delicate Balance” at  7 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 2, in the La Maison Auditorium, 500 Salisbury St.

The lecture will focus on the various portrayals of faith and religion in mainstream media. Beck will draw upon his 10 years of experience in network and cable news to examine the ways in which mainstream media cover faith and religion in television news.

David Barsamian

Inbox [Sept. 17-23]: News and notes from Worcester State, Becker, Anna Maria, Friends of Goddard Library, GWCF and Library Foundation

Have news you or your group would like to share? Let us know by emailing it to info@worcester.ma. Be sure to include a link to the full release on your site or Facebook page so we can include it and send Sun members your way.

David Barsamian to speak at WSU Tuesday

Broadcaster, author and award-winning investigative journalist David Barsamian will be the first speaker featured in Worcester State University’s new Provost’s Series on Democracy and Diplomacy.

Barsamian will deliver two talks. The first is a campus lecture, “The New Political Resistance in the Age of Trump,” at 10 a.m. Tuesday in the May Street Building, 280 May St.; the second, a community lecture, “Media, Propaganda, and U.S. Foreign Policy,” at 7 p.m. Ghosh Science and Technology Center, Room 102, 486 Chandler St.

UniBank scholarships

Inbox [July 16-22]: News and notes from Davis Art Gallery, UniBank, Worcester Institute for Senior Education, Columbus Day Parade, GWCF and SmartAsset

Have news you or your group would like to share? Let us know by emailing it to info@worcester.ma. Be sure to include a link to the full release on your site or Facebook page so we can include it and send Sun members your way.

Davis Art Gallery seeking submissions for next exhibit

The Davis Art Gallery is seeking abstract artwork for our next juried exhibit: Nonobjective NOW. Various 2D and 3D media will be selected for the exhibit, including drawing, painting, sculpture, ceramics, mixed media, photography, fiber arts and more.

The gallery will select approximately 35 to 45 artworks that will appear in the main exhibition space at the gallery, 44 Portland St., from Sept. 22 to Jan. 5. An opening reception will be held from 5 to 7 p.m. Friday, Sept. 22.

Inbox [May 31]: News and notes from Worcester State, Anna Maria, UMass Medical School, Planned Parenthood, city of Worcester

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Doherty teacher, WSU alum, honored at State House

Renah M. Razzaq, a mathematics teacher at Doherty Memorial High School, represented Worcester State University at the State University Educator Alumni Recognition Award Ceremony yesterday at the State House in Boston.

Renah Razzaq

Courtesy of Worcester State University

Worcester State University Education professor Sue Foo, left, and associate dean of Education Raynold Lewis, right, with Doherty High teacher and WSU alum Renah Razzaq.

Educators representing the nine campuses across the State Universities of Massachusetts were recognized for teaching excellence. Among the educators honored were school principals, teacher mentors and team leaders, a developer of professional development programs, and a teacher helping inner-city students gain exposure to the arts.

Razzaq is in her 15th year as a teacher at Doherty. She has served as department head for the last six years.

A Mother’s Journey [Part 45]: The collaboration realization

Editor’s note: Since September 2015, Worcester Sun has chronicled the trials and triumphs of Sun contributor Giselle Rivera-Flores as she explores ways to help her daughter and other Worcester families find affordable educational support and assistance. We used to describe her as an aspiring business owner; now, she’s an inspiring one. During her journey to establish and grow her nonprofit tutoring collaborative she has, you could say, stepped beyond the walls of her dream.

Giselle Rivera-Flores

After a series of workshops held by community leaders, endless peer presentations reflecting our leadership skills, and extensive discussions about what Worcester needs, Leadership Worcester has come to an end for the 2016-17 class.

In this joint initiative of the Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce and Greater Worcester Community Foundation, 25 “promising new professionals” connected through their various professional and personal backgrounds to talk about the future of Worcester — and quite honestly, they couldn’t have selected a better group of motivated, strong-minded and opinionated individuals.

On a mission to keep us all inspired up to the last minute — after months of skills development, training and networking — our final project was to sum up our experience in a six-word memoir. After a few minutes of debating and battling to bring the program full circle in only a few words, I stumbled upon my “ah-ha!” moment.

I realized Leadership Worcester was never really about building leaders. Instead, for me, it was about helping existing leaders learn to collaborate with others, to be the change we want to see.

Read Giselle’s previous chapter, The one dedicated to mom, or scroll down to explore more of her story.