NEW BOD 2023-2024

Dr. James L. Vander Hooven To Chair North Central Massachusetts Chamber Of Commerce Board Of Directors

James L. Vander Hooven, Ed.D., President, Mount Wachusett Community College has been elected Chair of the Chamber’s Board of Directors for 2023-2024. The announcement was made at the chamber’s Annual Meeting on June 15, 2023.

Dr. Vander Hooven was named president of Mount Wachusett Community College in 2017. Headquartered in Gardner, Mount Wachusett Community College is a public, two-year college that was founded in 1963 to serve the people of North Central Massachusetts. The college is accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE) and offers 70+ credit-bearing degree and certificate programs, non-credit, personal enrichment classes for lifelong learners, and workforce development that includes custom, on-site training.

Dr. Vander Hooven earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in English from The Ohio State University and his Master of Arts degree in American Studies from the University of Wyoming. In 2009, he was awarded his Doctorate in Higher Education Leadership from the University of Maine, where he focused on student access.

In addition to his involvement with the chamber, Dr. Vander Hooven also serves on a number of boards and charitable organizations, including the Boys and Girls Club of Fitchburg/Leominster, United Way of North Central Massachusetts, Wachusett Business Incubator and the GFA Federal Credit Union Supervisory Committee.

He succeeds Christopher McCarthy, president of Fidelity Bank who now moves to the position of Immediate Past Chair of the Board of Directors.

“I am incredibly honored to have been elected Chair of this dynamic and respected organization that plays such a leadership role in advancing North Central Massachusetts,” expressed Dr. Vander Hooven, “I am excited to continue Chris McCarthy’s efforts and look forward to working alongside an incredible Board and staff to make sure the Chamber remains a strong resource for our business community.”

Vander Hooven was first elected to the Chamber’s Board of Directors in 2018 and has held several leadership positions including Vice Chair, Treasurer and has served on the Chamber’s Leadership Council, the One North Central leadership committee and the executive committee. As the Chair of the Chamber’s Board of Directors, Dr. Vander Hooven will work with the Board, Chamber staff, and membership to champion the Chamber in its mission to serve the region’s business community.

“Jim has served as an important member of the Chamber’s Board of Directors and Executive Committee for several years and is a valued leader in the community,” noted Roy Nascimento, Chamber president & CEO. “We are fortunate to have his respected leadership as we continue to advance the interests of our members and work together to promote North Central Massachusetts.”

2023_New BODIn the same election, Barbara Mahoney, president & CEO of Leominster Credit Union was elected Vice-Chair and Dr. Richard Lapidus, president of Fitchburg State University was elected to the position of Treasurer. Board members elected for new terms were Nick Haritos, president & CEO of AIS, Inc. in Leominster; John Heroux, president of Micro Machine & Electronics in Leominster; and Nicole Moorshead, general manager of the Chocksett Inn in Sterling and the Colonial Hotel in Gardner.

Continuing current terms on the Board of Directors are Allie Catlin, co-owner of Smith’s Country Cheese in Winchendon; Jackie Cullen, co-owner of River Styx Brewing in Fitchburg; Tony Fields, president and owner of Cleartech Group in Leominster; Matthew Fournier, president of Elite Construction & Design in Fitchburg; Melissa Glenny, president of Franklin Professional Associates in Leominster; Michael Johansen, president & CEO of Bemis Associates in Shirley; Rachel Lopez, president & CEO of Resource Management, Inc in Fitchburg; Lori Richardson, president of Aging Services of North Central Massachusetts in Leominster; and Rodrigo Souza, owner of Comeketo Brazilian Steakhouse in Leominster.