November 3, 2018 /Sports News – Local Tuttle, Constantine lift Weber State to 26-14 win Associated Press FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailOGDEN, Utah (AP) — Jake Constantine passed for two touchdowns and Trey Tuttle added a pair of field goals and Weber State defeated Sacramento State 26-14 on Saturday to win its fourth straight and remain bunched among Big Sky Conference leaders.Tuttle kicked field goals of 42 and 35 yards in the first half, and Constantine threw a 20-yard scoring pass to Darryl Denby wide open in the end zone as the Wildcats (7-2, 5-1) built a 13-0 lead after a half.Weber State, ranked No. 5 in the FCS coaches poll, pushed the lead to 19-0 when Constantine connected with Rashid Shaheed from 20 early in the third quarter.Armon Bailey came untouched off the end to sack Constantine — his first career sack — and Leonard Hazewood IV picked the ball off the turf and returned it 33 yards for Sacramento State’s first touchdown. Hamish McClure added a 13-yard scramble in the final minute for the Hornets (2-7, 0-6). Written by Tags: Big Sky/Football/Jake Constantine/Trey Tuttle/Weber State Wildcats
Back to overview,Home naval-today Russia: Interagency Working Group Discusses Borei, Yasen Subs Construction View post tag: Interagency Industry news View post tag: working Interagency working group convened in Oct 13-14 at Sevmash shipyard to discuss the course of state defense order execution, told a source in the shipyard to Central Navy Portal. The main subject was progress in construction of Borei– and Yasen-class nuclear-powered submarines.Deputy chairman of military industrial committee at Russian Government Yury Borisov and the committee’s member Vladimir Pospelov arrived from Moscow to attend the session. The working group also included Sevmash Director General Anatoly Diachkov, his deputies, representatives of United Shipbuilding Corporation, and defense ministry’s officials. Director General of St. Petersburg Engineering Bureau Vladimir Pyalov took part in the meeting as well. The Navy was represented by Northern Fleet (NF) Deputy Commander Rear Admiral Andrei Volozhinsky. Directors of contracting companies also participated in the session.Moscow guests visited the shipyard’s shops and inspected construction process of submarines. In particular, Yury Borisov visited SSBN Yury Dolgoruky and SSGN Severodvinsk.The session of the interagency working group followed the meeting held at Sevmash by Russian Navy Commander-in-Chief Admiral Vladimir Vysotsky on Sept 30. The keynote of the meeting was delivery of SSBN Yury Dolgoruky (after Bulava missile tests are over), coming sea trials of the second Borei-class sub SSBN Alexander Nevsky, and the progress in SSGN Severodvinsk trials.[mappress]Source: rusnavy, October 20, 2011 View post tag: Navy View post tag: Borei October 20, 2011 View post tag: Naval View post tag: Group View post tag: News by topic Share this article Russia: Interagency Working Group Discusses Borei, Yasen Subs Construction View post tag: discusses View post tag: Subs View post tag: Russia View post tag: construction View post tag: Yasen
“Keeping the students who come to our nights safe and happy, while they have a great time, is our top priority.”There have been at least half a dozen cases of students contracting the skin condition late last week. David Hart, owner of NiteGlo FX, later revealed that the problem may have originated from a last minute switch in the type of chemical foam used at the Coven event.“There are two different types of foam that we use – one has a much thicker consistency, a bit like shaving foam,” he said. “We ran out of this kind on the night however, so we had to switch to the other type, which is much more watery and hasn’t been used by us for about a year.”He said that they had been notified by the Health Authority the day after the foam party that some people had suffered allergic reactions.“We immediately stopped using the second type of foam and cancelled a party that we had been booked to use it at that day,” he continued.‘A dodgy batch’“We’ve also given a bottle of the foam to the Health Authority for testing. This may well be just one dodgy batch, but we can’t tell for sure.”Mr Hart added however that the outbreak of red rashes could also have been brought on by ravers not following health and safety advice displayed at the club that they should wash off the foam directly after the party.“According to the Health Authority, it could also have possibly come down to some people going home and not having a shower afterwards,” he said.Although a probe into the exact causes of the skin rash is still ongoing, an email circulated to students of Brasenose College by the Dean following the outbreak explicitly linked the affected students’ condition to contact with the chemical foam.“Whilst the authorities are still investigating the cause of the skin rash, they are of the opinion that it is most likely a result of a mild contact allergy caused by the chemical foam used at last weeks foam party,” it said.He stressed that the rash was not contagious and urged those who had suffered the skin rashes to come forward and receive treatment. Student clubbers have had to be treated for gruesome skin rashes after partying at a Freshers’ Week foam night.Hundreds of revellers descended on the Coven nightclub last week, raving into the early hours on a dancefloor filled with chemical foam fired out of cannons.However many awoke the next day to find themselves covered in skin welts and itchy red blotches. Cases of the allergic reaction were first reported at Brasenose College, following a night that was also attended by both Mansfield and Oriel.With increasing concern about the number of students suffering from the condition, Brasenose College doctors quickly contacted the Thames Valley Area Health Unit, who were called to deal with the problem. The outbreak of hives followed the Project Eden event during Thursday night of Freshers’ Week.Allergic reactionHives, or Urticaria as it is officially known, is a skin condition commonly caused by an allergic reaction, with sufferers developing itchy red welts all over their bodies.Pulse, the company running club nights on behalf of the Oxford University Student Union this year, held two foam party nights at the Coven during Freshers’ Week, as well as two UV bubble nights and more than a dozen other events.A statement released by the organisation confirmed that several students had suffered skin rashes after attending the Coven party, but distanced themselves from the outbreak by pointing out that responsibility for the foam cannons lay with an outside events company.“We are very sorry to hear that students developed mild skin reactions after the foam party,” it read.“NiteGlo FX, an outside events company who ran the foam cannons for us, believe their suppliers used a different type of foam without informing them on the night of the event.“There was no way in which we could have forseen this problem, but we will make every effort to ensure it does not happen again.
Leicestershire bakery chain Coombs Hampshires has been bought out of administration for an undisclosed sum, saving up to 150 jobs. The business and assets have been purchased by Adam Baxter, who had been running the bakery with his father, Keith, prior to its collapse. However, six of its 26 stores are set to close in a “rationalisation” process, resulting in the loss of around 20 jobs. The company was formed when Hampshires Bakery bought Coombs Quality Bakers out of administration in 2006 and was 32nd in British Baker’s Top 50 bakery retailers table in January 2009.To read the full story, make sure you check out the latest issue of British Baker out 17 July.
For the first time since the Grateful Dead’s final performance, Jerry Garcia’s “Tiger” guitar will be played at a public performance. The esteemed guitar was primarily used by Garcia from 1979 to 1989, though problems with his “Rosebud” guitar forced the mid-show switch. Since that day, “Tiger” has not been seen publicly, though the guitar did get some recent exposure.When Dead & Company recently visited San Francisco, “Tiger” owner Jim Irsay recruited San Francisco Giants pitcher Jake Peavy to reacquaint the band members with the guitar. Though John Mayer never played the Garcia guitar publicly, the trip marked the first appearance for “Tiger” in San Francisco in over 20 years. Technician Steve Parrish literally wept when he was reunited with the instrument, and Peavy’s friends even brought the guitar to Terrapin Crossroads for a visit with Phil Lesh.You can read more about the “Tiger” adventures in this feature piece with Peavy. With the big “Tiger” trip on everyone’s minds, it did not take long for Irsay to find a guitarist willing to take the guitar into the spotlight. Fittingly, that man will be Warren Haynes, who has been performing a series of Jerry Garcia Symphonic Tributes throughout 2016. Haynes has been using Garcia’s “Wolf” guitar, another famed axe from the Dead guitarist’s arsenal, but this upcoming performance is something special. Not only will it take place at Red Rocks Amphitheatre. Not only will JGB member Melvin Seals be performing with the band. It’s also scheduled on August 1st: Jerry Garcia’s birthday.Jim Irsay is lending the guitar for this performance so the public can experience and appreciate this historical artifact. Along with Chris McKinney, who is President of The Irsay Collection, Jim Irsay’s goal is to both preserve and promote the legacies of these beautiful instruments. Irsay also recently purchased a guitar from Prince’s arsenal. Says Irsay, “The love of music and the arts is something that’s really special to me… By collecting some of the most important artifacts of art and music history, I’m able to preserve them so they can be experienced and appreciated forever.”We can’t wait for what is sure to be a magical performance!
Denver-based producer Alex Medellin, better known by his stage-name, Late Night Radio, has been cranking out an expansive catalog of music and showcasing his diversity within the electronic realm over the last half-decade. Today, he has released his longest and most innovative project yet, Sunday, featuring 11 hair-raising, feel-good tracks via Philos Records.Late Night Radio, like others from the fast-rising Philos team, brought an album full of soul and life to the table. More so than previous Late Night Radio records, Sunday features a more noticeable gospel influence thrown into the mix of Medellin’s psychedelic, chilled-out blend of electro-soul and hip-hop fusion. The first track on the album, “Family Dinner” (ft. Clark Smith, Recess & Brisco Jones), sets the tone of the project with an irresistibly-fun, head-nodding beat featuring dashes of a church choir, brass, and guitar that highlight the overall vibe of the album. From there, the rest of the album follows its pace, taking the listener on a ride through the exuberant mind and soul of Medellin.“I only recently realized it, but my favorite music is always hair-raising”, Alex Medellin tells Live For Live Music. “I’m really into feel-good hip-hop, soul, and funk, and all of those styles are rooted in gospel progressions. As I’ve gotten older, that has really had an effect on my music. For Sunday, the vision was to take bits and pieces of those genres and chop them up into something new. It was a natural step for me to pay homage to what I grew up on. You could call it ‘Sunday music.’”The album flows very naturally from track-to-track, each one bringing a different feeling of joy along with it. They all lead up to Sunday‘s final track and lead single, “In My Mind”, which features deeply soulful and moving vocals from Juliana Reed and guitar from Sunsquabi’s Kevin Donohue.For the first time in his career, Late Night Radio will be releasing a live studio recording of “Sunday” later this month, on November 26th. The live album features his guitar playing and keys as well as live horn sections, trumpet, trombone, and saxophone. ”To celebrate this new release, Late Night Radio will host an official album release party at Denver’s Cervantes Masterpiece Ballroom tomorrow, November 9th, where he’ll perform with a live band featuring support from other Philos Records artists: Daily Bread, Recess, and Derlee. Tickets are available here.Read on for a deeper look into what’s to come from Late Night Radio, and take a listen to the premiere of Sunday below…L4LM: With the inclusion of a live band for your show at Cervantes, do you see your live shows changing moving forward?LNR: It definitely opens up another avenue and direction my music/performances can go. I’m able to play tunes that I normally wouldn’t play alone but I don’t see it completely changing my shows moving forward, just adding another side to the project.L4LM: Do you have a song off Sunday you are most excited to play for a crowd?LNR: I can’t really narrow it down to just one track but playing with the live band is always something really special for me. It’s extremely rewarding to see the music I’ve written really come to life.L4LM: What does this album mean to you?LNR: This album means the world to me, it’s the culmination of years of musical collaborations, friendships and a lifetime of sounds in my head. This is also my first album to be pressed to vinyl via Philos Records and I really strived to make this a cohesive record you want to play from front to back. In a world of quick singles and bangers, I set out to make a timeless piece of music paying homage to all the things I love in music.Late Night Radio’s Sunday will be officially released on November 9th. Pre-order your vinyl copy here.Late Night Radio – Sunday – Full Album Premiere
Adriana Perez | The Observer Alan Page ’67 (right), former Minnesota Supreme Court Justice, shared his thoughts on race in America with G. Marcus Cole (left), dean of the Notre Dame Law School.These beliefs on the importance of law and education to advance racial justice were clear throughout the virtual conversation hosted by Notre Dame in order to commemorate Martin Luther King Jr. on Monday.The event was held virtually due to the pandemic and the consequent changes to the academic calendar. G. Marcus Cole, dean of the Notre Dame Law School, served as moderator of the discussion, which was streamed to over 1,400 live viewers.“As we remember the work and legacy of Dr. King and honor the past, let us pray for a future that will live up to Dr. K’s dreams. Let us pray not only with our words but also with our actions,” senior Kaya Lawrence, director of diversity and inclusion for Student Government, said in the opening prayer. “Let us pray not only with what we dream and hope but with our feet on the ground actively walking the walk.”Page admitted that King’s impact on the United States scared him when he was younger.“What he was doing was nothing less than changing the future for all of us. It took a lot of courage, and, quite frankly, watching what he was doing instilled fear in me,” he said. “Because it was scary for a young kid to see people willing to put their lives on the line to provide me a better opportunity and a better life.”Page grew up in Canton, Ohio, during the 1950s, watching fictional criminal defense lawyer Perry Mason on television and dreaming of doing more than working at the steel mills as many other young Black kids did.From his vantage point, he said, steel mills offered dirty, dangerous and dreary work. But from what he’d heard, lawyers had big, fancy cars and made money without much effort. And, he admitted, that also made him want to become a lawyer.Notre Dame and law schoolPage arrived at Notre Dame shortly after the March on Washington, at the height of the civil rights movement and during the Vietnam War: football, prestige and community all ultimately attracted him to a campus he said was home to no more than 30 students of color.A former football player, Page was inducted into both the NFL and College Football Halls of Fame for leading the Irish in the 1966 National Championship and for his role as a defensive tackle for the Minnesota Vikings and the Chicago Bears.Though he dropped out after his first three weeks in the William Mitchell College of Law — now the Mitchell Hamline School of Law — he eventually received his law degree from the University of Minnesota Law School in 1978 while playing professional football.He became special assistant attorney general of Minnesota in 1985 and then assistant attorney general, after which he was elected to the state’s Supreme Court in 1992 and re-elected three times, serving until his retirement in 2015.“How did law school and the practice of law change the way you viewed the racial divide in this country?” Cole asked Page.But the former Minnesota Supreme Court justice seemed unsure that the law changed his perspective. If anything, learning more about the law convinced him of what he had intuitively understood since he was a kid, as he explained: “I think it reinforced my view that law could be a useful tool in bridging some of the racial divide.”A look into the Black Lives Matter protestsCole also asked Page about his thoughts on what has remained the same and what has changed regarding race in America. There was a different reaction, he pointed out, to the police killing of George Floyd in May 2020, as opposed to the “hundreds of other innocent people who had been killed by the police beforehand.”“Well, I think the jury is still out on that,” Page said. “I’m not convinced that anything five years from now will be different because of it. I hope that it will.”However, he said, Floyd’s death at the hands of police officers, “from all outward appearances, leads one to conclude that it shouldn’t have happened,” and there was “a realization that it [was] done in our names.”After Michael Brown’s police shooting in 2014, Page noted, many people have died at the hands of law enforcement. Brown’s death in Ferguson, Missouri, was one of the events that sparked Black Lives Matter (BLM) — a racial justice movement that was revitalized last summer after Floyd’s killing, which followed that of Elijah McClain in Aurora, Colorado, of Ahmaud Arbery near Brunswick, Georgia, and of Breonna Taylor in Louisville, Kentucky.Cole asked Page about the movement’s defining phrase, “Black Lives Matter,” and about the counter offered by those who, claiming that “All Lives Matter,” say the BLM movement should not have the name it does.“We would rather have a discussion about the name than about the underlying root causes, and that’s sort of why I say it’s not clear to me that things are actually going to change,” Page said. That same discussion about the words, and not about the reasons why an organization like Black Lives Matter needs to exist, he said, will keep the U.S. in the same cycle even 20 years from now.Reflections on recent unrestMaintaining the course of the conversation, Cole asked Page about the different treatment law enforcement showed BLM protesters as opposed to the treatment of the anti-lockdown armed protesters at the Michigan State Capitol in 2020 and the pro-Trump mob at the United States Capitol on Jan. 6.After George Floyd’s death, Page said, “There were protests, and then there were violent protests. I would note that, by far, the vast majority of people involved were not engaged in violence or destruction, and we don’t tend to distinguish between two.”But he condemned both the violence on display a few weeks ago in Washington, D.C. and that which burned down post offices last summer in Minnesota.“Those are one and the same, and they both deserve the same treatment,” he said. “But that’s separate and distinct from those people who are … legitimately standing up in the face of what they believe to be unacceptable conduct by law enforcement officers.”At the Capitol, Page said, there was more going on than people marching in protest — “and I might add, marching in protest of a lie.”As a judge, he explained, he has had experience with facts, some of which one might like or not like. One can have a debate, he said, about the inferences that can be drawn from facts, but not about facts that have been established.“Maybe the only thing that holds this democracy together is the trust and confidence that people place in it,” Page added. “If we keep eroding that trust and confidence, then we will have nothing.”The pandemic and communities of colorCole also asked Page about the effects of a pandemic, which the U.S. has failed to control, on communities of color.“The virus doesn’t care who you are, where you are, the color of your skin, how much money you make,” Page said, adding that it does take advantage of and consequently devastate Black and Indigenous communities.Poverty, he explained, doesn’t give people a choice: they have to go outside because they have to work. But other people who do have a choice, he pointed out, voluntarily expose themselves to the virus, “which, quite frankly, I do not understand.”“So, I think what we’re seeing is just where poverty is, where need is, where people don’t have choices,” he said.A discussion on constitutional originalismPage also talked about the Constitution, which he said is grounded in racial bias and slavery and from which Americans need to untether themselves.“Are you suggesting we need to start from a clean slate or can this society be fixed?” Cole asked.The problem is systemic, Page pointed out, so that means the system has to change. He proposed an amendment to revise the meaning of the words of the Constitution every 50 years, so that the document more clearly responded to the present.“Why can’t we, those of us here today, be the Founding Fathers and Mothers for tomorrow?” Page asked.The Founding Fathers, he said, did not know about the internet, airplane travel or modern weaponry, “… yet we are ordering our lives based on a document from a time when the people who created that document could not have had any idea what we might be facing.”“We have the power to change,” Page said in closing. “I do, you do, all the people listening and watching here today have the power to change the future. The question is: Do we have the will to act?”More on Walk the Walk WeekA video of the conversation with Page is available on the University’s YouTube channel. “Today’s conversation is just one small part of our ongoing dialogue about the larger issues of racial and social justice in this time in our history,” University President Fr. John Jenkins said at the end of the event.The annual Walk the Walk Week will be observed on campus from Feb. 22 through Feb. 28 after the return to in-person classes. Per the Diversity and Inclusion website, during Walk the Walk Week, the University sets up a series of events so the community can consider their individual and collective roles in making Notre Dame and the United States more welcoming and inclusive.According to the University, information about events being planned as part of Walk the Walk Week can be found in said website as well, where events will continue to be added up until Feb. 22.Editor’s Note: An earlier version of this story stated Michael Brown’s shooting occurred in 2016 rather than 2014. The Observer regrets this error.Tags: Alan Page, Martin Luther King Jr., Racism, Social justice A picture of smiling students from Justice Page Middle School in Minneapolis was Alan Page’s Zoom backdrop of choice during the University’s sixth annual campus-wide observance of Martin Luther King Jr. Day.Page, a 1967 Notre Dame graduate and recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2018, established the Page Education Foundation in 1988 to encourage students in their academic pursuits. From an early age, Page’s parents had instilled in him the conviction that education constituted a crucial tool in overcoming racial inequality.Growing up as Brown v. Board was decided in 1954, Page also intuitively understood the power the law had to make the world a fairer place. He would go on to become the first African American to serve on Minnesota’s Supreme Court almost 40 years later.
By Cat HolmesUniversity of GeorgiaA University of Georgia scientist has rediscovered a quick, simple method to identify sources of fecal contamination in water, and it has the potential to save state and federal agencies a lot of money.The method, called targeted sampling, is simple. Instead of using statistical models and fixed locations, targeted sampling uses shoe leather and common sense.Targeted sampling is based on what used to be called a sanitary survey. For a sanitary survey, a person walked along sewer pipes and sampled for leaks. Targeted sampling is the same, except a person samples for sources of fecal contamination in creeks and waterways.“It’s akin to the children’s game of hot and cold,” said Peter Hartel, the UGA crop and soil scientist who devised the method. “You sample the water until you find areas where high numbers [of fecal bacteria} are present. Then you look around. It’s commonsensical: Are there cows in the water? A broken sewer pipe?” The current methods used to track down sources of fecal contamination in water are time consuming and expensive. That’s because scientists often use set sampling locations and databases instead of their eyes and legs to determine where a problem has likely occurred. Unfortunately, set sampling locations are often chosen because they are easy to get to, like bridges, but they may not be anywhere near the source of the problem.“If you actually go out and walk the waterways and sample everything that looks suspicious – every pipe, every tributary – you generally uncover [the problem] quickly and easily,” Hartel said.Targeted sampling greatly enhances the accuracy of bacterial source tracking. Chemical and DNA-based tests for bacterial source tracking are typically 65-85 percent accurate; when the same tests are combined with targeted sampling, they are 95-99 percent accurate. “It’s like looking for a needle in a haystack, except you’re looking for a needle with a great big magnet,” Hartel said. “For example, if targeted sampling identifies a hotspot of fecal contamination and I know that there’s a nearby dog park and septic field, then I only have to sample the dog park, septic field and water source to determine how much the dogs or septic tank are contributing to the overall fecal contamination.”So far, Hartel has been able to find fecal contamination quickly and easily with targeted sampling. When he tried it on the Sapelo River, he found that half the fecal contamination in the river was due to a malfunctioning private wastewater treatment facility. It took one day to find the source of the problem.“I have yet to come across a case where targeted sampling and common sense didn’t work,” Hartel said. He is preparing to use the method along the beach of a coastal island.“Because the coast has a high water table, failing septic tanks are a common problem,” Hartel said. With targeted sampling, a hotspot can be quickly identified and the site can be double-checked for optical brighteners common in laundry detergent. “If we find optical brighteners, we know what the problem is. It sure isn’t the deer doing their laundry.”The method does have a couple of drawbacks, Hartel said. One is that it requires a lot of manpower. He has used volunteers and there could be liability issues if a volunteer were to get injured or hurt. Another potential problem is trespassing. However, Hartel is confident that these issues could be addressed.“I wanted to find a method to identify sources of fecal contamination that’s fast and cheap,” he said. “This method works fine. And the beautiful part is it’s common sense.” Cat Holmes is a news editor for the University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences.
By Faith PeppersUniversity of Georgia Does your favorite gardener have every tool imaginable, every gadget sold only on TV? Gardening expert and retired University of Georgia Cooperative Extension agent Walter Reeves recommends some not-so-common gifts for the gardener: Label printer (available wherever office products are sold). “When you buy metal or plastic plant markers for your garden, you can use this small machine to print out a label and attach it to the marker,” Reeves said.”It will last two, three or even four years,” he said. “You can also print double labels: one for the marker and one for an envelope that will hold the seeds you collect at the end of the season.”Tree faces (available from www.alsto.com and other Web sites). These nifty novelties, made from resin or concrete, stick to a tree trunk. “It makes it look like your trees have faces,” Reeves said.Heavy-duty gloves (available at any garden center). “Either leather gloves or mesh with rubberized palm and fingers are a favorite choice,” he said.For bird lovers, Reeves recommends two favorite products:”Eliminator” bird feeder (available from www.wbu.com). “This is the best feeder I’ve ever had to protect my bird seed,” he said. “It’s more squirrel-proof than the gate-style ones that smart squirrels can quickly figure out and get around.”Bird bath dripper (available at www.duncraft.com). “You attach them to your faucet to drip water all day to attract birds,” Reeves said. “They will drink and sit under the dripper because the sound of dripping water is attractive to them.”Finally, Reeves suggests two gifts to avoid: ultrasonic mosquito repellers and windmills that repel moles. “Neither works,” he said.
As the economic downturn continues to take its toll on entrepreneurs nationwide, six small businesses in the Upper Valley region of Vermont are pushing ahead with plans to expand their business prospects using technical assistance grants secured by the Green Mountain Economic Development Corporation (GMEDC).The six businesses, located in five towns of the GMEDC’s 30-town region, are leveraging the money to explore new markets, focus on financial controls, enhance visibility, and ultimately to expand and add jobs.‘One of the things we have found is that there is a lot of demand for these kinds of services, especially for small businesses,’ said GMEDC Executive Director Joan Goldstein. ‘Most entrepreneurs are focused on their core business, and doing it really well. What these grants help them do is to work on aspects of their enterprises that are not core, but could allow them to expand into new markets, offer new products and services, and really sharpen their business models.’GMEDC worked with the six businesses to secure the grant funding, which totalled $43,000. The businesses have used ‘ and in some cases are still using ‘ the funds for studies and consulting services to help them find ways to expand and add jobs. The funds were made available by the Vermont Department of Economic, Housing and Community Development and the US Department of Agriculture’s Rural Development Agency.‘We are able to leverage these types of grants to do a tremendous amount of good for local businesses,’ said Goldstein. ‘The amount of potential that this grant has already unlocked makes the return on investment extremely high, on the order of several hundred percent so far, and the positive impact is still unfolding.’ The six businesses benefitting from the technical assistance grants include:Sound Innovations (White River Junction)In business since 2004, Sound Innovations is a six-employee firm that develops innovative in-ear communication and hearing protection products for military, industrial, and consumer applications. CEO Chris Pearson says the technical assistance grant allowed the firm to retain the services of a consultant who significantly expanded their future prospects, and is positioning them for future growth.Sound Innovations was contracted by the U.S. Army to develop and prototype technology for helicopter air crews to protect their hearing and clarify communications, but felt that the technology could also be applied in many other areas of the military, Pearson said. In order to receive funding for that extension of the technology, they needed the support of a major defense contractor that could help transition the technology.‘This grant enabled us to hire a consultant who had the right contacts at major defense contractors, and he was able to help us establish a relationship with one of the biggest,’ said Pearson. ‘With a strong letter of support from the defense contractor, we were able to win the $600,000 extension support program funding, and now the consultant is generating more business development opportunities for us.’Bread & Chocolate (Newbury)Employing 20 people during the July-to-December high season, this 22 year-old business retails Vermontbased and Vermont-branded specialty foods. Bread & Chocolate is using the technical assistance grant money to enhance its food-safety practices to meet third-party audit requirements, which will allow them to expand business to larger vendors, like specialty foods giant Harry & David.‘We had robust policies in place before, but increasingly, vendors are requiring a more formalized set of policies and practices,’ said Jonathon Rutstein, President of Bread & Chocolate. ‘This grant is allowing us to take these critical steps that we hope will ultimately expand our business and increase employment.’ShackletonThomas Furniture (Bridgewater)A maker of high-quality handmade furniture, pottery and accessories, ShackletonThomas is using the technical assistance grant money for two primary purposes: to refine its budget process, and to focus its branding. ‘In this economy when you see lots of businesses failing, these are the kinds of services that are really important,’ said Charles Shackleton, founder and creative director of the company. ‘The consultants we were able to hire were extremely helpful and gave us great tools.’Shackleton said the financial consultant not only allowed the company to establish and implement a robust set of financial controls, but also assisted in refining its strategic focus. And the branding work, he added, was equally helpful in zeroing in on the company’s core message and how to convey it to customers. The objective of both efforts, Shackleton noted, is to expand the customer base ShackletonThomas has been in business for 22 years, and employs 15 to 20 people.Bradford Veneer & Panel (Bradford)This 106 year-old wood products company is well-established in its market, but President and Owner Richard Parkin wants to position it for future growth by using the GMEDC-facilitated grant to develop a website. ‘Initially it will be about greater visibility,’ he said, ‘but as the market’s needs change and we offer new products, down the road we want to be able to offer them online, too.’Parkin said he anticipates the company’s website will be a critical tool in maintaining or growing sales volumes and retaining jobs, as well as preparing for future growth that he hopes will result in expansion beyond the company’s current head-count of eight.Parkin lauded the role of GMEDC in facilitating the grant for Bradford Veneer and Panel, but says he’s grateful for more than just the grant money. ‘I can’t stress enough how important the GMEDC is to businesses like ours,’ he said. ‘It’s the contacts that are so crucial. Small businesses need somewhere to get direction about where these kinds of resources are available, and that’s where GMEDC is instrumental.’Stephens Precision (Bradford)In business since 1981, Stephens Precision is a 16-employee, AS 9100-registered company that specializes in the machining of precision parts, gauges, and mechanical assemblies for aerospace and commercial industries. Ann Stephens, CEO of Stephens Precision, says the technical assistance grant money obtained through GMEDC is enabling the company to research potential new markets, both domestically and internationally, with the ultimate goal of expanding or retaining jobs.Vermont Verde Antique (Rochester/Hancock)As a company that quarries, handles, markets and sells a unique, dark green serpentine marble, Vermont Verde Antique is well-placed to do the same with other types of valuable stone.Tom Fabbioli, owner of Vermont Verde, says the company is leveraging the technical assistance grant money to explore just such a move. ‘We’re working on a feasibility study for the quarrying and marketing of another type of stone called schist,’ Fabbioli said. ‘It’s the state stone of Vermont, and it’s primarily what the Green Mountains are made of.’Vermont Verde, which recently purchased the former Vermont Plywood plant in Hancock, will use the grant money to see what type of markets might exist for the schist, and whether it would be a candidate for expanding the company’s offerings. ‘This could lead to a possible expansion and jobs,’ Fabbioli said, depending on the feasibility study’s results.Source: GMEDC. 8.20.2010