Attendees at a meeting

Member Spotlight: L.J. Rogers, Inc.

Founded in 1996 by Laura Rogers-Mullin, LJ Rogers is celebrating 20 years of prosperity this year as an international logistics management firm.  The expert staff at LJ Rogers has unparalleled knowledge to help businesses with import and export documentation requirements including Customs Clearance, International Shipping by Air and Sea, licensing and permits, certificates of origin, NAFTA certificates as well as assisting with FDA, NOAA, USDA and Fish and Wildlife registration processes.

All cargo needs to be approved by US Customs in order to enter the country which can be an overwhelming task for importers.  LJ Rogers Inc, conveniently located in the SouthCoast, is your one stop, local provider of PREMIUM Customs Brokerage and International Freight Forwarding.  Their knowledgeable and dedicated staff interacts with customers one on one and personally assist in the day to day operations of supply chain activities making the intimidating process of international shipping simple.

LJ Rogers, believes the key to their success is an educated and committed staff who deliver exceptional customer service, a strong attention to detail especially when dealing with federal government agencies and the ability to proficiently aid local owned companies conducting business on a global level.

“Small businesses need to support each other. Our first priority is our relationship with our customers.” Laura Mullin said. “We benefit from customers doing business globally, but we know success begins locally and we feel very strongly that if we work closely together we will both be strong and successful and so will our community.“

LJ Rogers, not only provides outstanding freight management services and supply chain solutions to their clients, but continuously give back to the community.  Staff members participate in Beach Cleanup at Horseneck Beach and volunteer at Dartmouth YMCA Farm whose produce benefit the local food pantries and soup kitchens.  A desire to learn new things, grow with our team and a willingness to go above and beyond at all times is a major priority of LJ Rogers’ work ethic.

As a member of the Chamber since January 2015, LJ Rogers has taken full advantage of all the opportunities membership offers.  They have attended several events, made many business connections and sponsored the International Seafood Buyer’s Tour held in March.

“The chamber offers us an opportunity to get to know our neighbors and be a part of a strong and growing network right here in our community” Laura stated.

LJ Rogers is committed to providing comprehensive brokerage services that make the process of moving products around the world easy and straightforward for SouthCoast business owners.  They are a perfect example of how the small locally owned businesses stimulate the area’s economy while understanding the importance of contributing to the community.

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Chamber Presents Awards to The Pasta House, Horacio’s, Inc. & New Bedford YMCA

The One SouthCoast Chamber of Commerce and BankFive are pleased to recognize the significant contributions and   achievements of the region’s businesses with the presentation of the 2016 New Bedford Area Business of the Year Awards in the categories of Small Business, Large Business and Non-profit/Educational Institution. The award was presented in June at a special edition of the Chamber’s Good Morning SouthCoast! business series.

This year’s Small Business of the Year Award was presented to The Pasta House. Located in Fairhaven, The Pasta House, which was established in 2001 and employs about 45 is well-known for their high quality food, beverages and service. The Pasta House cultivates a sense of community making every guest feel at home and that they matter. In an industry that is known for high staff turnover rate, The Pasta House is remarkable in that most staff tend to stay with the restaurant. They offer a range of positions and prepare their employees for success both in business and life. During the recession the Pasta House had to cope with rising cost of goods and utilities without passing those costs onto the customer. They focused on volume sales and was able to grow the catering business during this time.

The other 9 businesses nominated for this year’s award were: SERVPRO, Flour Girls Baking Company, Quahog Republic Whalers’ Tavern, Celia’s Boutique, SEASTREAK, Hope Yoga Studio/LA Cycle Studio, Doctors Express, Fairfield Inn & Suites, WayPoint Event Center and Waring-Sullivan Homes of Memorial Tribute and Rock Funeral Home

This year’s Large Business of the Year award was presented to Horacio’s Inc. Located in New Bedford, Horacio’s Inc. is a leading fabricator of stainless steel products for a wide variety of industries using innovative technology and traditional tools. Horacio’s is a second generation family business that employs 65, mostly SouthCoast residents and many who have been with the company over 20 years. Horacio’s has responded to economic changes by diversifying service in other areas including millwork and stone fabrication, providing a one stop location for their customers. They continue to grow by adding new clients, growing their service territory and adding new jobs.

The other 4 businesses nominated for this year’s award were: AHEAD, Acushnet Company, US Drywall Inc and CliftonLarsonAllen LLP

This year’s Non-Profit of the Year was presented to the New Bedford YMCA. The YMCA of New Bedford is dedicated to serving the mission of the organization to strengthen communities through youth development, healthy living and social responsibility. Established in 1867 and with a staff of 90 the New Bedford YMCA is making an impact on the community through its various programs that support youth development and healthy living. The YMCA works to ensure everyone regardless of age, income or background has the opportunity to learn, grow and thrive.

The other 8 non-profit/educational institutions nominated for this year’s award were: UMASS Charlton College of Business, New Bedford Symphony Orchestra, Devin Laubi Foundation, Child and Family Services, Better Community Living, Rail to Boston Coalition, Interise and New Bedford Art Museum/Artworks!

Nominations were solicited from the community and reviewed by a selection committee comprised of members. The selection committee looked for companies who have balanced success with a strong commitment to the community. Each nominee was rated based on five criteria: number of employees, staying power, growth, social responsibility and innovation. To meet just a few of these goals is a significant accomplishment.

The One SouthCoast Chamber of Commerce extends its appreciation to BankFive for being a partner in this important program. Their commitment as the founding sponsor of the “Business of the Year Awards” program reflects their dedication to our community and their commitment to providing services to small businesses. The Chamber would also like to thank those individuals who submitted nominations for the awards.

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Member Spotlight: Interise

In 2004, Interise was established by providing the tools, resources and networks for small business owners to grow. With meetings twice a month during the StreetWise MBA Program, entrepreneurs create a customized 3 year strategic growth action plan with realistic steps on how to grow. Interise graduates learn how to improve leadership skills, hire the right staff, cut costs, do business with other graduates, get approved for loans and much more. All graduates also receive a certificate from Interise and Boston University for completing the program and they join a network of over 3000 small business owners nationwide. “We want to work with and surround ourselves with business owners that are game changers and who go beyond trying to make payroll and really want to make a difference in their community.” Bernard Johnson, Interise’s Director of Program Operations.

Interise has a proven track record with their award winning StreetWise MBA Program. Interise stimulates economic revitalization in lower income communities and provides a diverse group of small business owners with entrepreneurial education, new networks, new business resources and access to markets. The Interise community creates jobs, grows businesses and develops community leaders. The latest impact report of Interise graduates showed 57% have added new jobs, 68% have increased revenue, 80% are in touch with fellow graduates and peer groups and job creation is 8X faster than the private sector.

Giving back to the community is also important to the team at Interise. They volunteer with Community Cooks, providing a meal once a month for at-risk youth at Bridge over Troubled Waters located in Boston. The Interise staff of 22 full-time workers has also volunteered with Cradles to Crayons. Interise is also an active Chamber member and has participated at the 2016 Women’s Forum. They also strongly encourage program graduates to be active members in their communities. Interise aims to give back to the community and create growth in underserved cities.

In 2014, Interise was honored with the Gold Stevie award during which it expanded to 26 states and 32 cities across North America.  Interise now works with twelve partners throughout the country to deliver its curriculum and has reached 511 small business owners in 60 communities; cumulatively, the organization has reached over 3,000 small business owners. In June 2016, Interise received certification for the WNPO: Woman Non-Profit Organization, which certifies qualified companies that are woman-controlled non-profit organizations. Internal growth also contributed to the organization’s momentum, with the addition of six department managers, four new board members and the formation of a research department purposed with the examination and sharing of insights collected from over ten years of program delivery, operations and systematic program evaluation data.

Being part of The One SouthCoast Chamber of Commerce embodies the commitment of the business community to the New Bedford regional area. It facilitates and brings businesses together to unite in building a thriving base for residents, visitors and employers.

Applications are now being accepted for the fall 2016-17 program; call to schedule a qualifying interview. Contact Elizabeth Howe, South Coast Program Manager: 774-473-3911/

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Award Recipients

Chamber Employees Graduate from Institute for Organization Management

A Leadership Training Program Produced by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation


Institute for Organization Management, the professional development program of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation, is pleased to announce that Rebecca Laliberte IOM, and Ian Abreu, IOM of The One SouthCoast Chamber of Commerce have graduated from the program and has received the recognition of IOM. Awarded to all graduates of the Institute program, the IOM Graduate Recognition signifies the individual’s completion of 96 hours of course instruction in nonprofit management. In addition, participants can earn credit hours toward the Certified Chamber Executive (CCE) or Certified Association Executive (CAE) certifications. Nearly 1,000 individuals attend Institute annually.

“Institute graduates are recognized across the country as leaders in their industries and organizations,” said Raymond P. Towle, IOM, CAE, the U.S. Chamber Foundation’s vice president of Institute for Organization Management. “These individuals have the knowledge, skills, and dedication necessary to achieve professional and organizational success in the dynamic association and chamber industries.”


Since its commencement in 1921, the Institute program has been educating tens of thousands of association, chamber, and other nonprofit leaders on how to build stronger organizations, better serve their members and become strong business advocates. Institute’s curriculum consists of four weeklong sessions at five different university locations throughout the country. Through a combination of required courses and electives in areas such as leadership, advocacy, marketing, finance, and membership, Institute participants are able to enhance their own organizational management skills and add new fuel to their organizations, making them run more efficiently and effectively.

Institute for Organization Management is the professional development program of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation. It is the premier nonprofit professional development program for association and chamber professionals, fostering individual growth through interactive learning and networking opportunities.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation (USCCF) is a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit affiliate of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce dedicated to strengthening America’s long-term competitiveness by addressing developments that affect our nation, our economy, and the global business environment.

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Brenna Sousa

Chamber Welcomes Brenna Souza

The One SouthCoast Chamber of Commerce is excited to announce the newest member to their staff! Brenna Souza is a student at Bridgewater State University and will be taking over the role of Youth Services Coordinator. Brenna was born in Charlotte, NC but has resided in Fall River, MA for most of her life. She is looking forward to beginning this journey and hoping to utilize her experience within the field of youth services to better serve the community. She is in her final year at Bridgewater State University and will be graduating in May of 2017 with a Bachelor’s degree in Communications. Brenna is excited to become a part of The One SouthCoast Chamber of Commerce family! Brenna can be reached at or by calling 508-999-5231 ext. 29.

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2016 SouthCoast Media Group Readers’ Choice

The One SouthCoast Chamber of Commerce want to congratulate our following members for being awarded 2016 SouthCoast Media Group Readers’ Choice! The Readers’ Choice list is best of the best businesses, organizations and even people around the area. The list below was nominated and voted by the general public. We are very proud of our member’s positive recognition and hopes they continue to thrive in their areas.



  • Auto Body/Collision
    (First Place) APC Auto Body
    (First Place) Check Collision/Toyota of Dartmouth
    (Second Place) Neighborhood Auto
    (Honorable Mention) Carl’s Collision
  • Auto Dealer Service Department
    (Second Place) Toyota of Dartmouth
    (Honorable Mention) Ashley Ford
  • Auto Glass Repair
    (First Place) Glaser Glass
  • Auto Repair- Independent
    (Second Place) Glassman Auto
    (Honorable Mention) Muffler & Brake
    (Honorable Mention) Ralphs Auto Center
    (Honorable Mention) Tom’s Auto Repair
  • Used Car Dealer
    (Second Place) Ralph’s Auto Center
    (Second Place) Toyota of Dartmouth
    (Honorable Mention) Tasca Nissan


  • Massage
    (First Place) Divine Massage


  • Bakery
    (First Place) Sunrise Bakery
    (Second Place) The Black Whale
  • Burger
    (First Place) DNB Craft Burgers
    (First Place) Mary’s Steamed Cheeseburgers & Mini Hot Dogs
  • Catering
    (Second Place) Russell Morin
  • Chowder
    (Honorable Mention) Mike’s, Fairhaven
  • Dessert
    (First Place) Acushnet Creamery
    (Honorable Mention) Sunrise Bakery
  • Dinner
    (First Place) Not Your Average Joe’s
    (Second Place) The Pasta House
    (Honorable Mention) The Black Whale
  • Family Dining
    (First Place) Not Your Average Joe’s
  • Ice Cream
    (First Place) Acushnet Creamery
  • Italian
    (First Place) Pasta House
  • Local Coffee Shops
    (Honorable Mention) Dunkin’ Donuts
  • Lunch
    (Honorable Mention) No Problemo
  • Other Ethnic
    (First Place) No Problemo
  • Pizza
    (Second Place) Pa Raffas
    (Honorable Mention) Not Your Average Joe’s
  • Portuguese
    (First Place) Antonio’s
  • Seafood
    (Second Place) Waterfront Grille
    (Honorable Mention) The Black Whale
  • Waterfront Dining
    (First Place) The Black Whale
    (Second Place) Waterfront Grille


  • Dentist
    (First Place) Coastal Dental Fairhaven
  • Hospitals
    (First Place) South Coast Hospital Group
    (Second Place) Tobey Hospital
    (Honorable Mention) Charlton Memorial Hospital
  • Rehabilitation Services
    (First Place) Community Nurse Fairhaven

Kids & Education

  • College
    (First Place) UMASS Dartmouth
    (Second Place) Bristol Community College
    (Honorable Mention) Bridgewater State
  • Museums
    (First Place) Whaling Museum
    (Second Place) Fort Tabor
  • Preschool
    (Second Place) YMCA Southcoast – New Bedford


  • Carpet Cleaning
    (First Place) Cyclone Cleaning
  • Financial
    (First Place) Bay Coast Bank
    (Second Place) Fall River Municipal Credit Union
    (Honorable Mention) Citizens Bank
    (Honorable Mention) New Bedford Credit Union
    (Honorable Mention) St. Anne’s Credit Union
  • Funeral Home
    (First Place) Saunders-Dwyer Funeral Home
    (Second Place) Perry Funeral Home
    (Honorable Mention) Aubertine-Lopes Funeral Home
    (Honorable Mention) Hathaway Funeral Home
  • Home Care Agency
    (First Place) Community Nurse
  • Insurance
    (First Place) Sylvia Insurance
    (Second Place) FB Insure
    (Second Place) Liberty Mutual
    (Second Place) Tomlinson and O’Neil
  • Nursing Home
    (Second Place) Our Lady’s Haven
  • Photographer
    (Second Place) Miss Z Photography
  • Realtor or Real Estate Agency
    (First Place) Arruda Realty
    (First Place) Jack Conway
    (Second Place) Pelletier Realty
  • Senior Living
    (First Place) Whaler’s Cove
    (Second Place) The Residence at Cedar Dell
  • Solar
    (Second Place) Solar City
  • Veterinarian
    (First Place) Chase Farm Veterinary Hospital
  • Florist
    (First Place) Garlington Florist
    (Second Place) Hawthorne Florist
    (Honorable Mention) Eden Landscapes
  • Home Electronics Store
    (Second Place) Handy Andy
  • Pawn Shop
    (Second Place) Empire Loan
  • Pet Supplies
    (First Place) Melissa’s Pet Depot


  • Bar / Pub
    (First Place) Rose Alley
  • Liquor Store
    (Honorable Mention) Freitas

Sports & Fitness

  • Fitness Center/Gym
    (First Place) Healthtrax
    (Honorable Mention) Gleason Family YMCA Wareham
    (Honorable Mention) YMCA Southcoast – New Bedford
  • Golf Course
    (Honorable Mention) Country Club of New Bedford
    (Honorable Mention) Little Harbor Golf Course
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New Bedford Port

New Bedford Declared America’s Top Fishing Port

In its annual report, Fisheries of the United States, NOAA announced today the latest data on U.S. recreational catch and commercial fish landings and value. For the fourteenth consecutive year, the Port of New Bedford is the number one fishing port in the nation.

New Bedford, had the highest valued catch, 130 million pounds of fresh seafood valued at $379 million. The Port of New Bedford has been the number one fishing port in America since 1999.

New Bedford vessels landed two-thirds of the total value of all seafood landings in Massachusetts, and fully one-third of the value of New England’s landings. For comparison, Gloucester, Massachusetts landed 3.6% of New England’s catch value, while Portland, Maine landed 2.7% of New England’s catch value.

“This is very positive news for our City and the region but, there is much work to do to ensure New Bedford retains the competitive advantages that have enabled our domination of the industry,” said Mayor Jon Mitchell.

The Port of New Bedford’s number one status is the direct result of the nation’s highly-valued scallop fishery, which is centered in New Bedford. Scallop landings account for more than 81 percent of New Bedford seafood landings.

The nation’s scallop industry is now both profitable and sustainable. The fishery has recovered over a twenty year period, as the industry worked in conjunction with University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, School of Marine Science and Technology (SMAST) to improve stock assessments and management controls efforts.

Unfortunately, this success has not been replicated in the groundfish industry. The value of landings from groundfish vessels declined by 30% in 2013 in New Bedford. Federal disaster money has just started to reach the businesses affected by the disaster.

Moving forward, industry, academics, and regulators must once again work together to improve stock assessments and develop management controls which provide sustainability in the ground fish industry as they have for the scallop industry.

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SouthCoast Chamber Announces New Member Campaign

The One SouthCoast Chamber of Commerce will be holding a Membership Campaign on June 11th & 12th, 2013. This new member campaign will include reaching out to nearly 5,000 businesses in the Greater New Bedford Area that are not yet benefiting from Chamber membership. The campaign will include a mailed invitation and personal phone-calls from business leaders in the region encouraging them to join the Chamber.

Sheila McGlinchey, Director of Sales & Marketing for SouthCoast Media Group will chair this special campaign. In addition, nearly 80 business leaders have volunteered to help recruit new members to the Chamber by sharing information about their positive experiences and the many benefits of Chamber membership.

“Chamber membership positions local businesses to be more successful which has a positive impact on our overall economic growth as a region,” said McGlinchey of the campaign.

The Chamber provides numerous services for members, including networking and professional development, export services, an electricity discount program, free and low cost marketing, school to career initiatives, trade shows, as well as government affairs programs and advocacy to encourage a positive business climate for the New Bedford Area.

In addition, the Chamber’s New Member Campaign will feature several “join now” incentives for businesses and organizations that enroll with the Chamber, including free advertising, web site listings, admission to Chamber networking programs and more. (download the “join now” incentives mailer)

Highlighting the campaign will be a two-day, four-session phone-a-thon at the Chamber’s offices on June 11th and 12th. Volunteers will be competing for bragging rights as the top recruiter and some great prizes including overnight trips, gift certificates to restaurants and stores, and much more. Grand prize for the top recruiter is 4 nights and 5 days in ARUBA!

Businesses interested in joining The One SouthCoast Chamber of Commerce or supporting the New Member Campaign should contact Ian Abreu, Manager of Members Relations at (508) 999-5231 ext. 24 or email

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SouthCoast Chamber Leadership in Transition

Today, The One SouthCoast Chamber of Commerce announced that Roy M. Nascimento, the Chamber’s President & CEO, has accepted an offer to take on a new leadership position with another larger chamber in the state. Nascimento’s departure comes after eight years of distinguished service in which he helped advance the Chamber’s goals and helped strengthen the SouthCoast business community.

“Roy will be sorely missed.” said David Maher, Senior Manager at Lockheed Martin Sippican, Inc. and Chair of the chamber’s board of directors. “He was a great leader for our organization. He consistently challenged our chamber and community to deliver on its potential. His fresh approach, collaborative leadership style and professional management expertise helped transform our organization into one of the most effective chambers of commerce in New England.”

Maher added that the Board is beginning today to set in motion a search aimed at finding a strong new CEO for the near-thousand-member business organization. “We have a very aggressive agenda dedicated to continue helping individual businesses, growing the region’s economy and enriching the communities across SouthCoast in the process,” Maher said. “We pledge to secure top new leadership that will take that agenda to a new level going forward.”

During his tenure, Nascimento is credited with stabilizing the Chamber’s finances and revitalizing the Chamber’s advocacy, events and communications programs. He was the catalyst behind the regional effort to revive the Southeastern Massachusetts Convention & Visitors Bureau and led the effort to create the “Rail to Boston” Coalition of business and economic development groups to collectively advocate for the restoration of rail service to southeastern Massachusetts. With the help of the talented chamber staff, other accomplishments included establishing the SouthCoast Young Professionals Network to help develop, connect and empower young professionals in the region as well as expanding the Chamber’s education, workforce and economic development initiatives. Some of the new programs that were established under Roy’s watch include the Good Morning SouthCoast Executive Breakfast program; A Chance to Meet the Buyer Procurement program; the International Seafood Buyers Mission; the CHOICES Drop-Out prevention program; the Lemonade Day entrepreneurship program in the middle schools; the Health Insurance Cooperative; the SouthCoast CEO Roundtable; and the SouthCoast Legislative Luncheon.

“It’s been an exciting and rewarding eight years at The One SouthCoast Chamber,” Nascimento said. “I am proud of the work the Chamber’s Board and professional staff at the Chamber have been able to accomplish during my tenure. We have accomplished a great deal working together and I believe that our work will have a significant impact on the business community and quality of life for SouthCoast residents for years to come.”

Nascimento will leave his post on January 16th and move into a similar role at the North Central Massachusetts Chamber of Commerce serving the Fitchburg and Leominster region. Maher said the Board will be appointing a committee to lead the search for the next chief executive officer of The One SouthCoast Chamber and to assure a smooth transition.

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Massachusetts Tech Tax Repealed

Effective immediately, the state law removing the exemption from sales tax on computer system design services has been repealed. CLICK HERE FOR THE LAW

What about those companies that collected the taxes and those that collected and remitted the taxes?
1. Businesses who collected the tax, but have not filed returns or remitted the tax to the DOR, should simply refund customers.
2. Those who either filed a return creating a self-assessment or filed a return and remitted tax must file an electronic application for abatement. For instructions, CLICK HERE.

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