Pando International launches with innovative embossed paper coffee cups

Distinctive hot cups offer superior insulation and ample branding opportunities

Today, Pando International, a Lehigh Valley-based producer of single-use, takeout paper containers, announces the introduction of its Embossed paper hot cup family of products to the U.S. market. The visually striking product line offers a unique, economical and safe hot beverage container for restaurants and other food and beverage businesses.

New to the U.S. market, this style of coffee cup has been adopted successfully in Europe and Asia, where it is currently in use by a global fast food brand.

The Embossed cups offer a distinctive and affordable alternative to paper cup sleeves or double-walled hot beverage cups. The outer, textured paper layer provides users with insulation and a tactile, slip-free grip. For businesses, the built-in insulation translates to savings and inventory reduction as they need only purchase one SKU instead of the usual pair—one for the cups and one for the accompanying insulating sleeves.

The texture of the Embossed product line also provides branding opportunities traditional paper cups cannot offer. The embossed patterns are customizable. With the help of Pando’s proprietary manufacturing process, custom printing is quick and easy to change as needed. A host of basic styles are available.

The cups come in all standard coffee cup sizes: 8, 10, 12, 16 and 20 ounces. They are made of paper coated in polyethylene, but can be coated in PLA to make them 100 percent compostable.

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Addison Wolfe achieves milestone: 50 agents in 9 years

Addison Wolf Real Estate , a boutique real estate firm catering to estate and historic home buyers and sellers, today announces it has achieved another growth milestone with the addition of two new Realtors, bringing the firm’s official headcount to 50 real estate sales professionals.

“I’m immensely proud of the success we’ve achieved as a team,” says Art Mazzei, owner and partner of Addison Wolfe. “Nine years ago we set out to create something different in the real estate business, and our business model has rewarded us with outstanding clients and immensely talented and dedicated realtors who make it all possible.”

According to Mazzei, the two new realtors, Greg and Johanna Hanson, formerly of Lisa James Otto Country Properties, officially joined the firm at the end of April.

“Agents of Greg and Johanna’s caliber and loyal client following are few and far between, and we’re excited to welcome them to Addison Wolfe,” says Mazzei.

As the firm marks its ninth year in business, Mazzei says he’s already begun anticipating the next milestone of the company’s upward movement: more space. Mazzei notes that with the additional personnel, Addison Wolfe is now at maximum capacity for its 4,000 square foot office space in New Hope.

“We’re going to need more space, or a second space soon to continue our growth strategy. The good news, though, is we’ve got plenty of great agents who can help us find the perfect location,” notes Mazzei.

More than $5 billion in business written at 89th annual AAMGA meeting

Association introduces its inaugural specialty programs track

Current estimates are that more than $5 billion in insurance premium was written during the course of the American Association of Managing General Agents’ (AAMGA) 89th Annual Meeting in Maryland between May 17 to May 20. In addition to welcoming 1,120 attendees, the meeting also introduced AAMGA’s inaugural specialty programs track. AAMGA leadership also welcomed a number of newly installed members and prospective members from across the U.S. and Canada, including many of the premier Canadian managing general agents (MGAs) from the provinces of Manitoba, the Maritimes, British Columbia, Ontario and Quebec.

“This was an incredibly successful and productive annual meeting,” explained AAMGA’s new president, Roger Ware of Genesee General in Alpharetta, Ga. “Our members were fortunate to gain a first-hand, global insurance market perspective from our Annual Business Meeting speaker, Chairman John Nelson of Lloyd’s. In addition to Chairman Nelson, we discussed a number of the emerging issues in the industry that our Emerging Issues & Trends Committee continues to monitor as well as welcoming our specialty program members to a number of dedicated break-out sessions focused on their needs. The debate on current political issues between Karl Rove and David Axelrod also gave our members an insight behind the scenes of how our current and prospective leaders are looking at the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead.”

According to AAMGA Executive Director Bernd G. Heinze, attendance surpassed expectations with additional walk-ins showing up to take part in the meeting.

“I could point to our packed Agents & Brokers Lounge or our need to bring in additional seating and tables to demonstrate the sheer volume of interest in this year’s Annual Meeting,” noted Heinze. “However, I think the ability of all our members to have access to the entire wholesale and program insurance market, and to network and conduct business with global leaders in our industry, resulting in more than $5 billion in business being written in just four days speaks for itself.”

Brian Molusis, president of Vital Insurance Partners in Glastonbury, CT, who attended the Annual Meeting last week for the first time in nearly 8 years said he was impressed.

“Eight years ago, AAMGA wasn’t catering to the specialty program marketplace. But there has been a sea-change in the association in the last two years to better adapt to the insurance market as a whole,” explained Molusis. “And because there isn’t another not-for-profit out there focusing on the needs of the specialty program market, this is a very welcome change.”

In particular, Molusis pointed to commitments from insurance carriers and other program professionals who attended the 89th Annual Meeting as a sign of good things to come.

“By next year’s [Annual Meeting], this will be one of the biggest specialty program conferences in the program space,” said Molusis.

The AAMGA’s Under Forty Organization comprised of young emerging professionals also welcomed a record number of its members to the Annual Meeting and raised more than $12,000 at the meeting to benefit the Make-A-Wish Foundation of the Mid-Atlantic.

AAMGA will host its 90th Annual Meeting on May 22, 2016 at the J.W. Marriott Desert Ridge Resort in Scottsdale, Ariz.

Commercial laundry safety improvement outpaces national industrial averages

National survey results show across-the-board reductions in injury and illness at commercial laundries, surpassing safety improvement rates in the overall private manufacturing industry

TRSA, the leading global textile services trade association, today released results of its annual national safety survey, showing dramatic, across-the-board reductions in injuries and illness at commercial laundries. According to the Textile Services Industry Safety Report, which bases its questions on U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA) standards, safety improvement at commercial laundries exceeds the overall private manufacturing industry.

The report found the Total Recordable Incident Rate (TRIR) for TRSA members dropped by 27.3 percent between 2010 and 2014. Similarly, TRSA members’ Days Away, Restricted and or Transfer Rate (DART) dropped by 25.6 percent during that same period.

According to U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), over the same time period, the private manufacturing industry reduced its TRIR and DART rates by 9 percent and 8.3 percent respectively. Private manufacturing operations are similar to those found in textile processing facilities and, therefore, shares many of the textile services industry’s same safety issues and compliance mandates.

“The statistics in the latest TRSA safety report shows tremendous improvement in key indicators of worker health and safety in commercial laundries,” said Joseph Ricci, CEO of TRSA. “Along with continuing advances in hygienic cleaning processes, these safety numbers highlight our industry’s dedication to improving the health and safety of its workers and the public.”

TRSA’s survey is modeled after the OSHA “Summary of Work Related Injuries and Illnesses” Form—more commonly known as the OSHA Form 300A. From February 1 through April 30, Federal OSHA regulations require every textile services facility to publicly display a completed OSHA Form 300A for the facility from the previous year in the facility where notices to employees are commonly posted.

The survey was completed by 713 TRSA members, with all completed member surveys submitted directly to Mackay Research Group—an independent, third-party organization that specializes in providing comprehensive information on employee, operating and financial performance for trade associations.

For the past decade, SafeTRSA has provided industry-specific tools and resources to help textile service providers improve their safety performance by documenting best practices and compliance. The TRSA Safety Committee continually updates and revises the material to identify and mitigate risks in their laundry facilities and on routes. The Safety Report is available at www.SafeTRSA.org

Insurance Society of Philadelphia announces new leadership

Dianne Salter, Beth Graber Selected to Lead 114-Year-Old Non-Profit

The Insurance Society of Philadelphia (ISOP) today welcomes two new leaders: Dianne Salter who will assume the role of chair of ISOP’s Board of Directors on July 1, and Beth Graber who assumes the role of ISOP executive director effective immediately.

Salter takes the helm of ISOP as chair with more than 25 years of insurance industry experience, including her current role as executive vice president of Corporate Insurance Services for Thomas Jefferson University, Main Line Health and Magee Rehabilitation Hospital.  She also serves as President of Mountain Laurel Risk Retention Group and Five Pointe Professional Liability Insurance Company. Previously she was executive vice president, Insurance Operations for Jefferson Health System from 2002 through 2014 and also spent 17 years providing brokerage, risk management consulting and account management services to large healthcare clients in her role as managing director of Marsh USA Inc. She is a former board chair for the Vermont Captive Insurance Association and a current board member of both the St. Joseph University Academy of Risk and Insurance and ISOP.  Salter earned her bachelor’s degree from the University of Delaware and an MBA in finance from La Salle University.

Graber joins ISOP after three years of progressively senior-level risk management roles at Keystone Foods, most recently as the $2.5 billion global food supplier’s director of Corporate Insurance and Risk Management. Previously, Graber spent 20 years in claim management for a handful of organizations, most notably Chubb. She earned her bachelor’s degree from the University of Delaware and her MBA in business and marketing from Villanova University.

The outgoing ISOP board chair and current managing partner of Willis North America in Philadelphia, John Sherlock, said the new ISOP leadership duo will bring fresh energy and new opportunities to the 114-year-old association.

“I’ve had the great pleasure of serving on the ISOP board with Dianne [Salter] and I have the utmost confidence in her leadership and vision,” said Sherlock.  He added that ISOP’s executive committee engaged in an extensive examination of ISOP’s strategic objectives to ensure the continuity and relevancy of the organization before tasking Salter and Graber with leadership roles.

“We’ve had extensive meetings, productive discussions and selected Beth [Graber] who brings both the organizational aptitude and appropriate industry insight needed to take ISOP into the future” said Sherlock. “Putting two well-qualified, energetic and ambitious leaders like Dianne and Beth at the helm of ISOP is good for our members and bodes well for the continued leadership, strength and growth of our organization.”

Both Salter and Graber have already begun developing a number of programs and initiatives they will introduce to the ISOP board immediately following Salter’s official installation as board chair. Meanwhile, the new executive director is organizing her staff at ISOP’s new headquarters in King of Prussia and preparing new series of highly focused workshops and forums on a range of topical issues such as climate change, emerging risks and workers’ compensation.

Salter, Graber and their team will also focus on prioritizing expansion of membership and programs for the NextGen group within ISOP for young professionals. And while the leadership team is new, ISOP’s continuing commitment to professional development and education of all insurance professionals within southeastern Pa., southern N.J. and DE remains central to its mission.   

Tyler Park Center for the Arts Announces Summer Music & Sculpture Festival

Featuring world-class sculpture and artisan crafts, superb music, farm-to-table culinary selections, and locally crafted beer and wine

Tyler Park Center for the Arts (TPCA) is pleased to announce a premier event, “Summer Music and Sculpture Festival.” On June 27th and 28th from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., the famous TPCA Meadow will feature world-class sculpture, including indoor works and monumental outdoor pieces, paired with superb musical talent presented by Evan Walton of Addison Wolf Real Estate.

One of the featured artists, Ayami Aoyama, at work

Featured artist Ayami Aoyama at work

The Summer Music and Sculpture Festival combines the presentation of exceptional works of art and a diverse artisan marketplace featuring the work of local potters, woodworkers, fiber artists, and sculptors with a bounty of regional farm-to-table culinary selections including the Lower Makefield Farmers Market.

Attendees will have the chance to meet local artists and purchase locally made crafts, art, and unique handmade items while taking part in live demonstrations including the construction of an adobe bench, creation of a large-scale found object sculpture by Eric Schultz of the Grounds for Sculpture, painting, or throwing pottery. All activities are suitable for every age and ability.

The Festival features an array of live music including Evan Walton’s Wineskin, featuring Grammy Award– winning drummer Jim Hines playing R&B, rock, and original works. Wineskin is an icon in the regional music scene for nearly 25 years. Sharing the stage are John Beacher with his newly released album “Saturn Returns,” Tritide, Larry Tamanini, JB Kline, and the Red Rooster Band among others.         

Bringing inspiration and awareness to the event are several area non-profit organizations, a student sculpture exhibit (high-school students) and competition as well as “Sculptor Talks,” rounding out two full days of amazing events and activities surrounded by beautiful Tyler State Park.

Small-scale works from the Festival will travel to our partner, New Hope Arts, after the close of the event. Through the TPCA partnership with New Hope Arts, we create more opportunities for artists to connect with patrons through their fine multimedia works, all of which are available for purchase.

Tickets can be purchased at TylerParkArts.org by June 10th at a discounted rate, or $13 for members, $15 for non-members at the gate. Children under 12 are always free at TPCA public events.

About Tyler Park Center for the Arts

Tyler Park Center for the Arts is a non-profit organization featuring extensive programming, classes, and visual arts. Under the leadership of Executive Director Jennifer Miller, Tyler Park Center for the Arts serves the community through a host of transformative programming including adult and youth instruction for both groups and individuals, and a permanent Sculpture Garden featuring outdoor installations. With 25 years of experience as a professional potter, Jennifer’s skill as an impassioned teacher has resulted in a vibrant pottery studio and artistic community in the historic Stable Building at Tyler Park. Under her administration, Tyler Park Center has become a regional arts destination. To learn more about Tyler Park Center for the Arts, please visit tylerparkarts.org.