Ophthalmologist joins Rutland Regional

RUTLAND — Dr. Ryan Rogers, an ophthalmologist, has recently joined Marble Valley Eye Care at Rutland Regional Medical Center. He received his bachelor’s degree in biology from the University of Southern California and medical degree from Chicago Medical School at Rosalind Franklin University. Rogers completed his residency in ophthalmology at Cook County Hospital in Chicago, Illinois, and an oculoplastic fellowship at Baylor University Hospital in Houston, Texas. He is the only board-certified ophthalmologist in Southern Vermont trained to do oculoplastic surgery, a specialized procedure that can treat and correct eyelid problems which include droopy upper eyelids, extra eyelid skin or eyelids that turn inward or outward. Contact Marble Valley Eye Care at 773-8328.

Jennifer Guidry, who drives for ride-sharing companies like Uber, Lyft and Sidecar, takes a break from her day to enjoy a coffee and a banana in Boston, in 2014.

Tax law has carrot for gig workers

The New York Times
The new tax law is likely to accelerate a hotly disputed trend in the U.S. economy by rewarding workers who sever formal relationships with their employers and become contractors. Management consultants may soon strike out on their own, and stockbrokers may hang out their own shingle. More cable repairmen and delivery drivers, some of whom find work through gig economy apps like Uber, may also be lured into contracting arrangements. That’s because a provision in the tax law allows sole proprietors — along with owners of partnerships or other pass-through entities — to deduct 20 percent of their revenue from their taxable income. The tax savings, which could be around $15,000 per year for many affluent couples, may prove enticing to workers.


Marano joins SVHC management

BENNINGTON — Angeline Marano has joined the management team at Southwestern Vermont Health Care as vice president of Ambulatory and Continuing Care Services. “Angie comes to us with a stellar background in health-care management,” said Thomas A. Dee, SVHC’s president and CEO. “We are excited to add her depth of experience to our team as we continue to expand our ambulatory care and post-acute care services.”

Marano most recently worked for Williams College as director of health services. She is a fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives. In addition to her work, Marano volunteers on the boards of the Second Chance Animal Center and Village Ambulance Service.

State seeks DMV commissioner

MONTPELIER — Gov. Phil Scott is seeking applicants for commissioner of the Department of Motor Vehicles. The commissioner will be charged with improving customer service and reducing the administrative burden and costs. This work would include digitizing and simplifying paper processes. He or she would also be responsible for completing and following through on the department’s IT projects; developing a plan to have all employees trained in the administration’s PIVOT/LEAN program; and applying national best practices. The position is responsible for 350 employees.

Sheahan to head Talent Pipeline project

SOUTH BURLINGTON — Mary Anne Sheahan of Shelburne, has been hired by the Vermont Business Roundtable as executive director of the Vermont Talent Pipeline Management Program. “The Roundtable and its VTPM partners around the state are very excited about this important next step toward the full realization of our program, which will improve alignment of employer needs with education and workforce programs, and grow Vermont’s economy,” said Roundtable President Lisa Ventriss. The project is an employer-led and demand-driven model created by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation to address workforce shortages. VTPM has focused on building collaboratives in the construction and health care industries. In 2018, its focus will expand into manufacturing and technology industries.

Meal Train helps people organize gifts of food during times of change.

Meal Train: UVM grads’ service helps neighbors help neighbors

BURLINGTON — When Joyce Kahn broke her leg, she relied on friends and even some people she didn’t know very well to lend a hand. And lend a hand they did, bringing her dinner every night until she could get back on her feet. The nightly meal was set in motion by a friend who used Meal Train, a kind of neighbor-helping-neighbor website. Living alone, Kahn said while she was on crutches she couldn’t get around “to do anything.”
“I’m the grateful recipient of the Meal Train,” said Kahn, a Montpelier resident. Meal Train was launched several years ago by two University of Vermont graduates, Michael Laramee and Stephen DePasquale.

Daniel O'Donnell, left, looks on as William Hayden sends large blocks flying at the Creative Kids Learning Center, a school that focuses on pre-kindergarten for 4- and 5-year-olds, in Seattle. In perhaps an unexpected twist, historically conservative strongholds like Oklahoma and West Virginia are leading efforts to bring preschool to all and Alabama and Georgia are also red states that have notable programs. But some liberal leaning-cities like Seattle and New York also are running public pre-K programs.

States struggle to make pre-K available to all

The Associated Press
SEATTLE — In perhaps an unexpected twist, historically conservative strongholds like Oklahoma and West Virginia are leading efforts to bring preschool to all. “They have in common a low-wage workforce, relatively low education levels and the desire to change that,” said Steven Barnett of the National Institute for Early Education Research. “Whatever they say, politicians in West Virginia know the future of their state is not coal miners.”
Other red states that have notable programs include Alabama and Georgia. But some liberal-leaning cities like Seattle and New York also are running public pre-K programs. Vermont school districts are required to provide a minimum of 10 hours of pre-K programming per week for 3- and 4-year-olds. Advocates say more universal programs are needed to address what they call an alarming increase in child care costs.


Ahern joins Futures Project

BERLIN — Chad T. Ahern will join the Vermont Futures Project in January, to further its educational, outreach and research efforts. Ahern brings experience in program development, organizational outreach, and fundraising from his work in higher education. The Vermont Futures Project is a data-driven initiative to secure Vermont’s economic future. Ahern will work to expand data on the Economic Dashboard and create recommendations to effect change to meet growth targets. “I’m excited to join the Vermont Futures Project efforts to develop a plan and make progress toward providing opportunity for current and future generations,” he said.


Trooper to head security at Rutland Regional

RUTLAND — Chuck Cacciatore has been hired as manager of security and switchboard for Rutland Regional Medical Center. His duties include overseeing and coordinating security efforts across the hospital. Cacciatore had a long and distinguished career with the Vermont State Police. He began as a road trooper in 1991, spent 15 years as a drug abuse resistance education officer, and was the first Vermont state trooper to work as a school resource officer out of Mill River Union High School. He completed his law enforcement training career in the Office of Professional Development and Training and led the department’s recruiting effort.

A Spinning group fitness class at Granite City Group Fitness in Barre. The couple that owns the studio has taken over a cycling location in Montpelier, and will open Monday.

Granite City brings Spinning to Zenith cycling studio

MONTPELIER — Spinning is coming to the Capital City on Monday, when Brittany and Brett Tremblay, owners of Granite City Group Fitness in Barre, open a second location at 54 Main St., previously Studio Zenith’s cycling center. Zenith will continue to operate group fitness classes next door at 50 Main St. Spinning, a trademarked fitness activity, is indoor cycling with classes focused on endurance, strength, high intensity and recovery, and involves using special stationary exercise bicycles with weighted flywheels. The Tremblays opened their Barre studio, located at 54 Depot Square, in June 2016. The Barre studio offers Spinning and a variety of group activities including yoga, Zumba (an aerobic fitness program featuring movements inspired by Latin American dance), high-intensity interval training, Bootcamp (a program designed to build strength and fitness through a variety of intense group intervals) and candlelight yoga.