Big Y Foods was recognized with the Gold Award and White Lion Brewing Company was awarded the Silver Award. Both awards were made for their significant investments in economic development in the region.
Mayor Sarno states, “Two great examples of Springfield businesses doing it the right way. Congratulations to both Charlie D’Amour and his Big Y team and Ray Berry and the White Lion team for their continued belief and investment in our Springfield. Both Big Y Foods and White Lion epitomize the business community in Springfield – creative, hardworking, and giving back to the community. Congratulations to both on this well-deserved award and recognition!”
Big Y Foods added 52 new jobs and invested $50.9 million since 2020 in a 232,000 square foot expansion in Springfield for its “Fresh & Local Distribution Center” that provides local farmers and producers with an efficient, one stop location that saves time and expenses related to delivering to individual stores. The company has been recognized by Forbes as a Best-in-State Employer in Massachusetts and Connecticut, as well as Employer of Choice by the Employers Association of the Northeast.
White Lion Brewing Company reactivated 8,000 square feet of space that sat vacant for over 15 years while delivering on the first craft beer brand marketed in Springfield and beyond. White Lion added 13 new employees (69% women and 46% persons of color), donated close to $25,000 to the community, and its ownership sits on a number of local and statewide boards and commissions. While there are more than 230 breweries in Massachusetts, White Lion is one of only six minority-owned breweries in the state, and nationally, there are over 8,300 breweries and less than 1% are black-owned.
“MassEcon could not have chosen two better businesses to bestow their top honors to,” said Tim Sheehan, Chief Development Officer. “Both Big Y and White Lion are cutting edge in their respective business sectors and their recent development initiatives in Springfield have brought to the city new jobs and significant capital investment. Additionally, both companies are highly engaged in and enrich our collective Springfield community in so many ways.”
The 14 statewide winners will be honored at Gillette Stadium on April 7, 2022, with Citizens Bank as presenting sponsor. Each awardee added new jobs and facility investment; pursued social impact through community involvement/philanthropic efforts; and embraced equity, diversity & inclusion practices.
Both Springfield companies were nominated for the awards by the City of Springfield, Office of Planning & Economic Development (OPED). The West Region roster of awards was rounded out by United Aircraft Technologies of Pittsfield, which won the Bronze Award.
The full release on award winners can be found here: 14 Growing Massachusetts Firms Named Winners of Team Massachusetts "Impact" Awards - MassEconMassEcon