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Central MA Up + Comer: Operations Analyst Laura Nowell

Thursday, April 24, 2014


Former Clarkie, Laura Nowell is an Operations Analyst for Conservation Services Group (CSG). CSG is a large not for profit organization that specializes in energy efficiency programs and brings in over 120 million in revenue with offices in more than15 states. Laura holds her BA from Clark and MS from Southern New Hampshire University with two graduate certificates in Public Administration and HR. She is active in professional development groups including the Young Professional Women’s Association, New England Women in Energy & the Environment, Northeast Energy Commerce Association, and is Co-founder of the Young Professional Westborough Group.

A Conversation with Laura Nowell

SW: You are an Operations Analyst for Conservation Services Group. What exactly does your job entail?

LN: Being part of our Operations team means you have a slight hand in everything. CSG currently holds contracts for more than 64 programs so as an Operations Analyst we help start programs, analyze their workflows, business practices and implement systems company wide. The job consists of a lot of program consulting, each programs goal is energy efficiency and our goal is to make the program more efficient.

SW: What led you to this career path?

LN: I joined CSG the summer of 2011 after graduating from Clark. Taking a position within the green industry was just another page out of the Clarkie book. I started in their HEAT Loan Financing program and having had several opportunities to work on projects outside of my job description realized I wanted to consult and do project management for more than one program at CSG. Joining our Corporate Operations team was a step in that direction.

SW: Who or what has been the biggest influence in your life?

LN: There are too many phases in life to chalk it up to one major influence. Thus far I have had three major contributors to my success; my mom Joanne Normand, my mentor Sandra Mokey and one of my bosses Celeste Maykel. My mom has been a constant support for each step I’ve taken… she even handed me my diploma when I completed my Masters. Sandra has given me the many opportunities and professional guidance at CSG that is essential to professional growth. Celeste is the owner of EVO dining and she never allowed me to say no! She constantly reminds me what it means to have a demanding schedule and great work-life balance.

SW: How do you spend your free time?

LN: I work two jobs so free time is usually a foreign concept. My boyfriend is the co-owner of Funky Stuff in Worcester which adds to our work load but gives us the opportunity to travel and meet all kinds of different people, business owners and artists. In our “free” time we go to music festivals all over the Country and hike with my dog as much as possible.

SW: What do you do for volunteer work?

LN: As a member YPWA I have had several volunteering opportunities through Working for Worcester and Girls Inc. I also volunteer for The 200 Foundation which has multiple fundraising events such as charity golf tournament and dinners in order to give grants and donations to local non-profit organizations and communities.

SW: What is your favorite quote?

LN: “In the end the love you take is equal to the love you make” it’s from a Beatles song and it just reigns true to my mentality and reminds you to keep your surroundings equal and well- balanced.

SW: What is a fact that few people know about you?

LN: I was a vegetarian for six and half years… one day someone dared me to take a bite of a cheeseburger and I never looked back.

SW: Where do you see yourself in 10 years?

LN: Student loan free, the rest I am still deciding on…

GoLocalWorcester presents Central MA Up + Comers, a weekly profile of a member of the next generation as they are making their mark or charting new territory in the Central Ma workforce and community. Join us every Thursday for a look at the careers and lifestyles of the local digital generation.

If you have suggestions for a profile, please email [email protected].

Susan D. Wagner is president of Susan Wagner PR, a boutique public relations firm invested in meeting client's goals with integrity and creativity.


Related Slideshow: Women Leading in Central Massachusetts

Who are some of Central MA's high-level female bosses?  GoLocal takes a look at some of the leading women in the region in their respective industries, in the private and nonprofit sectors.  

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Lisa Piehler


Piehler has been the Regional CEO of the American Red Cross of Central and Western Massachusetts since 1993, overseeing a regional area of 1.7 million people in over 200 cities and towns in Central and Western Massachusetts, and a staff of 30 and 400 volunteers.

Prior to working at the American Red Cross, Piehler was the Director of Parks and Recreation for the city or Worcester. Piehler received her bachelor’s degree in park administration from the University of Massachusetts and a master’s degree from Clark University with a concentration in non-profit management.

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Victoria Waterman


Waterman is currently the CEO of Girls, Inc, the non-profit organization meant to help girls navigate through the challenges of growing up female and to gain the skills and confidence to achieve their dreams.  Waterman had previously been President of Leading Women Massachusetts, an organization that provides leadership development solutions for women in organizations.

Waterman, who has 20 years of experience in the mortgage banking industry in the marketing sector, received her bachelors of science in marketing from Bryant in 1985.  Waterman's awards include the Stevie Awards Honoree for Women in Business in 2010 and the excellence in Board Leadership in 2012. 

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Deborah Penta


Penta is the Founder and CEO of Penta Communications, the regional integrated marketing, advertising, web, interactive media, and public relations firm.  

Penta has helped senior level management teams develop shape strategic and effective marketing, advertising and public relations programs, and has served on the Board of Directors at Worcester County Food Bank, the Board of Directors at Worcester Regional Research Bureau, and the Board of Directors at Worcester Community Action Counsel. She received her bachelor’s degree from Stonehill College and her executive education from Harvard University.

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Laura Sen


Sen has been the President and CEO of BJ’s Wholesale Club for over 4 years, having previously over 20 years of experience with BJ’s, including having roles as Chief Operating Officer, Executive Vice President of Merchandising and logistics,Vice President of Logistics, and Senior Vice President of General Merchandise.

Prior to working at BJ’s, Sen has nearly 30 years of experience in mass retail, working with Zayre Corporation and Jordan Marsh Company.  Sen has served on the board of Saint Coletta and Cardinal Cushing Schools of Massachusetts and has provided support to non-profit organizations including the Women's Inn at Pine Street, the Neely House and the Cardinal Cushing Centers Springtime Event.

Sen received her Bachelor’s degree from Boston College.

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Liora Stone


Stone founded Precision Engineering with her husband Peter in 1988. Located in Uxbridge, Precision Engineering focuses on custom metal sheet fabrication.

The company has grown to include 40,000 square feet of manufacturing, assembly and warehousing space, encompassing two physical plants within Quaker Industrial Park.

Stone is a graduate of Syracuse University.

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Susan Engelkemeyer


Engelkemeyer was appointed the 7th President of Nichols College on August 1, 2011 and was officially installed on October 21, 2011, where she now oversees  a student body of 1,500 students.

Prior to working at Nichols College, Engelkemeyer worked for Babson College, Ithica College, and the Charlton College of Business at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth.

Engelkemeyer received her Bachelors degree from Stephens college, her Ph.D in Industrial Management from Clemson University, and her M.B.A from East Carolina University.  She serves as a peer review team leader for the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business and served on the board of directors for GOAL/QPC for 20 years. 

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Paula Rooney

Rooney, the 13th President of Dean College, as according to the school's website has overseen enrollment that has "more than doubled and overall retention has increased substantially, while new baccalaureate partnerships and programs have been launched to complement the college’s established associate degree programs.

In addition, campus improvements such as new building construction and renovation and Dean’s wireless technology environment have dramatically transformed the campus" -- and under Dr. Rooney’s helm, "Dean College’s financial status has been solidified as endowment has quadrupled from $7.9 million to $32 million."

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Gail Carberry


President of Quinsigamond Community College, Dr. Carberry holds Certificate in Small Business Management from Springfield Technical Community College, a B.S. from Worcester State University and Master’s and Doctorate degrees from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, specializing in organizational development, strategic planning and staff development. 
She currently serves on numerous local, State and national Boards including the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center, Latino Education Institute, Bay Path Regional/Vocational High School Foundation, National Association for Community College Entrepreneurship, Worcester Educational Collaborative, Boys & Girls Club of Worcester, Central Mass Workforce Investment Board, Greater Worcester Community Foundation, Worcester Business Development Corporation and the Massachusetts Biomedical Initiatives. She co-chairs the Mayor’s Commission for Hispanic Education Excellence and chairs the Early Education Matters Task Force.
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Kristin Carvalho


Milford National Bank President and CEO Carvalho is both a prominent corporate and community figure, who with the bank has supported causes such as the Massachusetts Lions Eye Research Fund, the WMRC radiothon, and while at the bank. and received an “Outstanding” rating from the Massachusetts State Division of Banks for its Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) compliance. 
“Very few banks achieve the ‘Outstanding’ rating so we are particularly pleased to have achieved this,” said Carvalho at the time.  “As a community bank, our primary focus is to help people in this area buy homes and finance small businesses. Earning the ‘Outstanding’ rating is an indication that our efforts are successful.” 
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Tina Sbrega

President and CEO of GFA credit union,  Sbrega has been Director of the Massachusetts Share Insurance Corporation, Trustee for Mount Wachusett Community College, and Trustee of Heywood Hospital Credit Union and Freedom Credit Union, and acquired a credit union technology service in Rochester, New York. 


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