Chef Polignano of the Ryland Inn brings his own flavor to one of the state’s premier restaurants

Fulfilling one of his culinary dreams, Chef Craig Polignano of Basking Ridge, New Jersey joins the Ryland Inn as its newest executive chef. Find out how he and one of the best eats in New Jersey are making Craig a top chef and the Ryland Inn a top restaurant, in this NJBIZ feature story.

On A.M. BestTV, AAMGA’s Bernie Heinze discusses recent visit to Lloyd’s

BernieandJohnWeber

Earlier this month, Bernie Heinze, executive director of AAMGA, briefed A.M. BestTV’s John Weber about his recent visit to Lloyd’s to discuss the role of MGAs in transfers, audits and more. Watch the interview here.

New Hope’s Logan Inn makes history, sells for $5.6 million

Jersey City developer promises to restore, expand Bucks County landmark

Addison Wolfe Real Estate, a boutique real estate firm specializing in distinctive properties, today announces New Hope’s historic Logan Inn has sold for $5.6 million to Landmark Hospitality, headquartered in Jersey City, N.J.

According to Addison Wolfe Realtor® Caryn Black, who represented Landmark Hospitality, the Logan Inn deal represents the largest commercial real estate transaction in recent history within the borough of New Hope.

“This deal has been in the works for some time, and promises to remake the face of downtown New Hope while remaining true to the building’s historic roots and New Hope’s distinctive character,” says Black. “Landmark Hospitality has an impressive track record of restoring historic commercial properties and turning them into remarkable destinations that complement their environment. The same will be true of Logan Inn.”

Established in 1722 as a tavern, the Logan Inn at 10 West Ferry Street in New Hope is Bucks County’s oldest and only in-town, continuously operational inn on the National Register of Historic Places.

Frank Cretella, principal of Landmark Hospitality, intends to work closely with New Hope’s Historical Architectural Review Board and Doylestown Architect Ralph C. Fey, AIA, to enhance the property’s curb appeal. In its current form, Landmark’s plans call for constructing two additional permanent structures that will add 17 new guest rooms and a pebbled court yard.

“As we did with the Ryland Inn in Whitehouse Station a few years ago, our intention is to return the Logan Inn to its true landmark status,” explains Cretella. “Logan Inn has been a centerpiece for New Hope since the dawn of this town, and we intend to renew its promise, restore its history and remake it as a showplace of fine dining and lodging for the hundreds of thousands of people who visit the area annually.”

Landmark Hospitality, a leader in urban renewal and adaptive reuse practices for historic and existing commercial structures, also operates Liberty House Restaurant in Jersey City, Stone House at Sterling Ridge in Warren, N.J., and Celebrate at Snug Harbor in Staten Island, N.Y., in addition to the Ryland Inn. The company also recently unveiled its other distinctive New Hope property, the fully renovated Hotel Du Village on River Road.

Gloria Nilson & Co. opens Toms River office

Gloria Nilson & Co. Real Estate today announces it is scheduled to open its newest office in Toms River at 411 Main Street in early December 2015. This newest location brings the company’s total number of offices to 24 throughout New Jersey, with two locations in Bucks County, Pa., and more than 700 agents working throughout the region.

“Toms River is an extremely diverse and dynamic downtown environment that continues to be a destination of many throughout the state,” explained Jacqueline Paterno, the broker-associate branch manager who will lead the Toms River office. “With so many of our clients looking to Toms River and surrounding areas for homes, this was the next logical location for our business and our agents. We’re thrilled to be joining the local community.”

In addition to Paterno, 12 additional sales associates from Gloria Nilson & Co.’s Brick, N.J., office will join the Toms River office. Plans for an official grand opening celebration in the first quarter of 2016, as well as recruiting for additional experienced and well-trained local sales associates, are also underway.

Sales associates who will work from the Toms River office include: Ramona Bruno, Anna Fimagnari, James Hawkes, Michael Meehan, Sima Parisi, Loretta Parody, Peter Paterno, Tom Rafferty, Sarah Rullo, James Schneider, Roseann Smith and Donald Stout

“One of the reasons Gloria Nilson & Co. has continued to grow as a successful real estate brokerage is because our expansion is strategic and it focuses on meeting the needs of our buyers and sellers,” said company President Pat Bell. “Toms River gives us another key regional location in Ocean County as well as further reach into other desirable shore communities where buyers are most interested.”

For more information about Gloria Nilson & Co. and its new Toms River location, please visit www.glorianilson.com or call Paterno at (201) 218-6388.

Sustainable Energy Fund committed nearly $4 million to 2014-2015 energy projects in PA

At its recent annual public meeting in Lower Macungie Township, Sustainable Energy Fund (SEF), a nonprofit non-governmental organization dedicated to educating, supporting and financing energy users seeking sustainable energy options, announced it had committed nearly $4 million dollars to regional renewable and sustainable energy projects during its fiscal 2014-2015 calendar year.

Those commitments, totaling $3,952,871, represent low-cost loans to help fund a variety of energy projects across approximately 20 different organizations, including nursing homes, condominium developments, day care centers, museums, municipal governments, non-profits and various commercial enterprises.

A sampling of these projects include:

  • $1 million for Community Energy Renewables in Radnor, Pa., to allow the organization to develop future solar PV projects.
  • Nearly $45,000 for Fairmount Homes in Ephrata, Pa., for a retrofit lighting project incorporating LED lighting at the organization’s Wheat Ridge Drive location.
  • Approximately $34,000 for Youth Advocate Programs in Harrisburg to retrofit the organization’s North 3rd Street location lighting with energy-saving LED lights.

“We continue to see in both the non- and for-profit sectors a recognized need to control costs, plan for the long-term and commit to more sustainable energy alternatives,” said John Costlow, president and CEO of SEF.

TRSA’s Hygienically Clean healthcare certification earns AORN Seal of Recognition

TRSA, the leading global textile services trade association, today announces its Hygienically Clean Healthcare Certification program standards have received the Association of periOperative Registered Nurses (AORN) Seal of Recognition™ for its certification materials.

The AORN Seal of Recognition confirms the certification program has undergone a thorough quality review by AORN and is consistent with the organization’s Guidelines for Perioperative Practice. According to AORN, this is not a product endorsement but rather a demonstration that the educational and informative material provided about the certification program is sound and reliable. Specifically, the Seal of Recognition recognizes the certification program’s materials on the “Standard for Producing Hygienically Clean Reusable Textiles in the Healthcare Industry.”

“Since the creation of the Hygienically Clean certification in 2012, TRSA has continued its work to raise the bar and standards within the commercial laundry industry through this program,” explained Joseph Ricci, president and CEO of TRSA. “We’re honored to have successfully earned AORN’s Seal of Recognition for our Hygienically Clean program and we’ll continue to work with our membership to ensure the industry is held to the highest possible standards of cleanliness and safety.”

To be considered for Hygienically Clean Certification, facilities handling healthcare linens are inspected for adherence to best practices and quality assurance requirements. This inspection is preceded by two rounds of bacteriological testing of laundered textiles by an independent, TRSA-approved laboratory. Samples must pass a total of three rounds of testing to qualify for certification.

To maintain certification, facilities must regularly repeat the tests: the Replicate Organism Detection and Counting (RODAC) protocol, quarterly, rather than the previous protocol of twice per year; and United States Pharmacopeia (USP) 62, for microorganisms most commonly found in healthcare environments, twice yearly. This frequent quantification of performance fosters continuous improvement through adoption of new laundering techniques to deliver a better level of cleanliness.

“Hygienically Clean standards have a very large and positive impact on public health in general because they lower the overall community infectious disease risk burden,” said David F. Goldsmith, MSPH, Ph.D, an occupational and environmental epidemiologist with George Washington University’s Milken Institute School of Public Health in Washington, D.C., who recently conducted a third-party review of the certification program. “TRSA Certification offers a serious marketing advantage versus competitor laundries who have not adopted the Hygienically Clean process.”

According to TRSA, by Dec. 31, 2015, it expects approximately 50 percent of commercial laundries exclusively handling linens and other textiles from healthcare facilities will have earned its Hygienically Clean certification. Complete information on the program and its newly revised protocols and best practices can be found on the program’s new website at hygienicallyclean.org.

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.

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