Spring into Action: Leading Your Business with Creativity

first_imgThe Women Business Owners Network (WBON) will hold its 2nd annual spring conference for women business owners on April 30, 2003 at the Best Western Conference Center in South Burlington, VT. The theme is, “Spring into Action: Leading Your Business with Creativity.”The conference will begin with on Friday at 11:00 am and run until 5:30 p.m. Registration fees are $39 for members, $54 for non-members, and $139 for new members (includes 1 year of dues).The conference will feature a business expo for members and sponsors. The sponsors include: Key Bank, Vermont Economic Development Authority, Vermont Woman, Vermont Times, Lake Champlain Chamber of Commerce, Athena’s Day Spa, & Kinkos.According to Meredith Martin Davis, Executive Director of WBON, “The fall conference allows women business owners to learn from other successful business women though the stories of the keynote speakers, through networking with each other, and through interactive sessions that allow attendees to reflect on creativity in their own lives and businesses and discuss decisions that will impact their future.”The keynote speakers are: Linda Kelliher, of Kelliher Samets Volk Communications, Judi Danforth, co-founder of Danforth Pewter, and Lyn Severance, illustrator and graphic artist best known for her work with Ben & Jerry’s.Linda Kelliher is the founder of Kelliher Samets Volk, the vibrant Vermont brand relationship firm. Linda is a painter, a creative director, and a wise and wonderful entrepreneur. Firmly rooted in reality, Linda draws on her experience as a mother and a business leader to deliver a healthy dose of common sense and inspiration. Linda is the CEO of SheClicks.com, a web site devoted to helping savvy, busy women make the most of the Internet. Linda is also involved in keeping the conversation aloft with the benefits of the creative class to Vermont.Judi Danforth and her husband Fred founded Danforth Pewterers and began designing their holloware line in Woodstock, Vermont in 1975, reviving a family tradition of pewtersmithing started by Fred’s great great great great great grandfather between 1755 and 1782. They moved to Lincoln, Vermont in 1978 and for ten years developed their pewter line in their mountain workshop. In 1988 the company moved to its current workshop in Middlebury, Vermont, where Fred now designs and creates the holloware line while Judi focuses her energy on designs for the cast line. The Danforth name enjoys a unique recognition among both antique and contemporary pewter collectors.Lyn Severance grew up in Burlington and Colchester and is a native Vermonter. After Burlington High School, Lyn went to Parsons School of Design in New York City and focused her studies in graphic design and illustration. Immediately following Parsons, Lyn returned to Burlington to work as a designer. Her clients included start-up businesses (like Ben & Jerry’s) and non-profit organizations (like the Vermont Symphony Orchestra). After ten years Lyn took her first full-time job as Creative Director at Ben & Jerry’s where she oversaw all the graphics and visual look of the ice cream business. In 1997, Lyn left Ben & Jerry’s to pursue other projects. Recent projects have included identity and packaging work for Gateway computers, Fat Cat Inc., VerMints, Parmalat, and others; and designing and illustrating three childrens books Cow, Ice Cream, and Pig.The Women Business Owners Network (WBON) is an association serving Vermont and New Hampshire that provides the opportunity for women in business to share experiences and learn from one another. Since 1984, the organization has been offering a forum for members to exchange information and resources in an atmosphere of candor, humor and mutual respect.The Women Business Owners Network is over 140 women strong. There are monthly chapter meetings in Brattleboro, Montpelier, Rutland and Burlington, and Hanover, NH, as well as conferences and social events throughout the year.For more information on the fall conference go to www.wbon.org(link is external) or call 802-363-WBON.last_img read more

Furchgott Sourdiffe Gallery 25 Years in Business

first_imgFurchgott Sourdiffe Gallery in Shelburne is celebrating their 25th year of business in Vermont as artisan picture framers and restorers of antique frames. An art gallery became an additional part of the business beginning in 1991.Brad Sourdiffe and Joan Furchgott met in Vermont in 1975, and left for 6 years before returning in 1982. At that time they initially set up a frame restoration business operating out of their then home in Buel’s Gore.The skills the couple learned while employed at Kotzbeck Gallery in San Francisco from 1979-1982, are rarely found in the picture framing business today. Furchgott had been working as a picture framer on and off since 1973, and at the San Francisco gallery learned additional traditional skills that included French matting (hand-drawn ink lines and panels of tint or marbelized papers), hand-wrapping fabric mats and conservation skills for the handling of rare and valuable art. The San Francisco gallery employed skilled international craftsman, and there Sourdiffe learned the art of gilding and finishing, both for the making of new hand-finished frames and mats, and restoring antique frames and objects. Back in Vermont, Sourdiffe also learned additional modern conservation techniques while apprenticing at the conservation lab at the Shelburne Museum. Today Sourdiffe is widely recognized for his meticulous and historically accurate work for both individual and public collections. Since moving back to Vermont in 1982, he has restored historic frames for many prestigious institutions which include: the Bennington Museum, the Fleming Museum, the University of Vermont, the Vermont Statehouse, and the Hood Museum at Dartmouth College. Of the dozens of frames he has worked on for the Vermont Statehouse, two of the most notable are the frames for the painting of George Washington hanging above the speakers rostrum, and the 16′ x 23′ painting of the Battle of Cedar Creek. Numerous pieces restored in Charleston , S.C. include those for City Hall, The Gibbes Museum of Art, and the Historic Charleston Foundation. This year he completed extensive restoration of a c.1864 Vermont state seal now hanging in the St. Albans Museum.In 1991, the couple bought the Shelburne Art & Frame Shop in Shelburne Village where both had worked at various times on a part-time basis. That business had been originally established in the 1970’s , so in it’s new incarnation as Furchgott Sourdiffe Gallery it has the distinction of being the oldest commercial art gallery in Chittenden County. The revitalized gallery immediately began to establish a reputation for representing many of the area’s most interesting and accomplished artists.The roster of artists includes such established names as Janet Fredericks, Alison Goodwin, Gail Salzman, Kathleen Kolb, David Smith, Polly Thompson, Beth Pearson, Joseph Salerno and Barbara Wagner as well as numerous others working in many different mediums and styles. There are currently over 40 established and emerging artists represented by the gallery, representing both realism and abstraction, with the emphasis being on work of high caliber, with a distinct artistic vision. In addition to the work currently hanging in the gallery, there is additional work on view at the Bearded Frog, Shelburne’s popular new restaurant in the renovated Shelburne Inn. In recent years, fine crafts and gifts including jewelry, hand-blown glass, wood work, pottery, and scarves have proved an additional draw for those looking for distinctive, affordable treasures.Sourdiffe works primarily out of the couple’s home workshop in Lincoln, on restoration projects and hand finished frames. In describing the meticulous nature of this work, he explains the process: “When conserving frames or objects care is taken to retain as much of the original structure and finish as possible, with any restored areas carefully finished to match the existing patina. Many years of experience have made it possible to have refinished areas be indistinguishable from the surrounding original finish. Materials used are consistent with the original materials, such as water gilding, the traditional gilding of wood, a process that hasn’t changed for centuries. A thin layer of gesso, a mixture of whiting and rabbit skin glue is applied to the wood. Bole is applied, a mixture of clay and rabbit skin glue. The bole is wet with gilder’s liquor, a combination of alcohol and water which brings the glue up to the surface of the bole. Metal leaf (most commonly gold or silver leaf) is applied using a gilder’s tip, a brush made of ox or squirrel hairs, to pick up the leaf. When dry, the leaf is burnished with an agate burnisher to achieve a mirror like finish. If a matte finish is desired the leaf is left unburnished.” Both Furchgott and Sourdiffe have backgrounds in studio art as well as art history which are critical for the design and authenticity of framing both contemporary and historic pieces of art.The gallery utilizes two outside experts in the conservation fields of oil painting and works of art on paper, enabling them to offer a full range of conservation services. Estimates for restoration work are offered at no charge. Furchgott and Sourdiffe are pleased to have Lara Maloy as an employee who has proven adept at learning and mastering the traditional skills of framing and conservation.The frame shop is full service, and does work of every type, including photos, fine art, needlework, shadow boxes, and just about anything imaginable. A recent project involved building an olive wood veneer cabinet type frame, that contained antique spurs, pistol and holster. This summer Sourdiffe created an historically accurate replica frame for the Shelburne Museum’s Manet painting “Le Saumon” which is currently on view at the Denver Museum.Whether it’s a child’s first drawing or a Rembrandt etching, each piece gets the same attention to detail. In addition to the hand-finished frames Sourdiffe creates, there are hundreds of choices from the most basic woods and metals to gorgeous Italian mouldings, with prices for every budget. Besides having a dedicated customer base in Chittenden County, customers come from all over Vermont and beyond, with a considerable clientale traveling from across the lake.The gallery is located in a restored Queen Anne Victorian at 86 Falls Road in Shelburne Village. Gallery hours are Tuesday- Friday 9:30-5:30, and 10-5 on Saturday. More information can be found on the web at www.fsgallery.com(link is external) or by calling 802-985-3848.last_img read more

US ski industry tallies 57.1 million visits, fifth best on record

first_imgBased on preliminary estimates, ski areas nationwide tallied 57.1 million visits for the 2008/09 season, making it the fifth best season on record. Over the last 10 seasons (1999/00 – 2008/09), the industry has averaged 56.7 million visits. The 2008/09 season represents a 0.8 percent increase from the 10-year average, and just a 5.5 percent decrease from the record 2007/08 season of 60.5 million visits. At 13.8 million visits in 2008/09, the Northeast region was up 5.5 percent from its 10-year average. Meanwhile the Southeast region, at 5.62 million visits, was up 3.8 percent from its 10-year average; the Midwest region, with 7.41 million visits, was down 1.1 percent from its 10-year average; the Rocky Mountain region, with 19.79 million visits, was up 1.3 percent from its 10-year average; and finally the Pacific West region, with 10.54 million visits, was down 5.8 percent from its 10-year average.Relatively favorable snow and weather conditions in most parts of the country during much of the season provided a strong counterbalance to the challenging economic conditions. Based on resort comments, the impact of the economy varied somewhat depending on resort location and resort type. Many day-ski areas in close proximity to major metropolitan markets benefitted as many guests chose to ski and ride at locations closer to home. Meanwhile destination resorts often reported fewer overnight visits and shorter stays. Many resorts commented that snow and weather conditions had a more powerful impact on their visitation than the economy. Overall average snowfall was down just 10 percent. The Southeast realized a 31.2 percent increase in average snowfall; the Midwest was up 1.1 percent; the Northeast was down just 10 percent; the Pacific West was down 10.2 percent; and the Rocky Mountain region was down 14.2 percent. A final report will be issued in July. For more information visit nsaa.org. THE NATIONAL SKI AREAS ASSOCIATION, LOCATED IN LAKEWOOD, COLO., IS A TRADE ASSOCIATION FORMED IN 1962 FOR SKI AREA OWNERS AND OPERATORS NATIONWIDE.last_img read more

Vermont Law School uses grant to convert historic building

first_imgVermont Law School will use a $250,000 energy efficiency grant to help convert an historic building into a vibrant new center for legal advocacy. The grant was the largest of 14 grants totaling $1.7 million that the Vermont Clean Energy Development Fund gave out to colleges, hospitals and other non-profits on June 16.VLS will use the grant to completely renovate 190 Chelsea Street, a two-story building overlooking the South Royalton town green. The building will be historically preserved and upgraded to high standards of energy efficiency using best green building practices.The retrofitted structure will be the home of the South Royalton Legal Clinic (SRLC), which has outgrown its cramped quarters elsewhere on campus, and the Environmental and Natural Resources Law Clinic (ENRLC), which operates as a law firm within a law school. The renovated building will give the SRLC 60 percent and the ENRLC 110 percent more space, respectively, than their current locations. Both clinics train law students and provide free legal services to the community.Since 1979, the SRLC has served thousands of Vermont residents who are unable to afford counsel on issues such as children’s rights, immigration, family law, domestic violence, housing, health care and consumer protection. Last year, the SRLC provided approximately $1.5 million in free services. The ENRLC offers pro bono legal representation on environmental matters to organizations and individuals who would not otherwise have access to legal services.“With this support from the Clean Energy Development Fund, the 190 Chelsea project can realize a synergy of environmental, economic and societal impacts that transcend the bricks and mortar required to breathe new life into an old building,” Dean Jeff Shields said. “Through this project, VLS has the distinctive opportunity to restore an historic downtown structure, reduce energy costs and consumption and expand our community and environmentally focused legal aid work.”VLS has raised more than $1.4 million of the $3 million to $3.5 million needed to purchase, renovate and equip the clinics building. A formal fund-raising campaign kicks off in September. Tentative plans call for renovation to start in 2011 and be completed in 2012.The site’s 11,000 square feet will give both clinics increased and improved space for the faculty, staff and student clinicians who often work late at night to meet case deadlines. The building also will become the new home of the VLS Barrister’s Book Shop, which will have an increased product line as well as outdoor and indoor seating that will serve students, faculty, staff and the community.VLS, which has a history of award-winning historic preservation and energy efficiency projects, is working on the 190 Chelsea project with Efficiency Vermont and the Vermont Division for Historic Preservation. Efficiency Vermont provides technical assistance and financial incentives to households, businesses and schools to help reduce their energy costs with energy efficient equipment, lighting and approaches to construction and renovation. The Vermont Division for Historic Preservation is the public agency designated to be the advocate for historic properties in the state.Many of the 190 Chelsea building’s exterior historic features will be maintained, but the interior was long ago altered, so it will be designed to fit the modern needs of the two legal clinics. The building’s insulation, heating, cooling, electrical, plumbing and other systems will be brought up to code. The result will be a rejuvenated structure that adheres to U.S. Interior Department standards for rehabilitation and is consistent with the law school’s commitment to environmental stewardship and public service.More information on the SRLC and ENRLC is available on their VLS websites.Vermont Law School, a private, independent institution, is the nation’s top-ranked environmental law school and has one of the top-ranked clinical training programs in the nation, according to U.S. News & World Report. VLS offers a Juris Doctor (JD) curriculum that emphasizes public service, a Master of Environmental Law and Policy (MELP) degree for lawyers and nonlawyers, and two post-JD degrees, the Master of Laws (LLM)  in Environmental Law and the LLM in American Legal Studies (for international students). The school also features innovative experiential programs and is home to the Environmental Law Center and the South Royalton Legal Clinic. For more information, visit www.vermontlaw.edu(link is external).Source: VLS. 6.23.2010last_img read more