O'Neill and Associates - O'Neill ONLINE


Dear Friend,


I'm delighted to share with you the August issue of O'Neill Online, the monthly newsletter of O'Neill and Associates, New England's leading public affairs consulting firm. Below you will find stories on the sustainability of cocoa and the FAA's Reauthorization Extension, upcoming client events and company news, as well as spotlights on our clients' good work. Thanks for reading!   


Tom O'Neill 

Chief Executive Officer

Twitter: @tponeill3 


August 2011: In This Issue
The Sustainability of Cocoa
FAA Reauthorization Extension
Client Spotlight: Maxwell's Green
Save the Date: Upcoming Events
SVP Joseph Driscoll on NECN
OA Summer Intern Project
Banker & Tradesman "Best of 2011" Awards

The Sustainability of Cocoa  

By Senior Director Suzanne MorseTwitter: @sznnmorse     


Within the next nine years, the worldwide demand for cocoa will be more than 4.5 million metric tons, 1.5 million tons short of current cocoa production levels. To address this challenge, Mars Chocolate, maker of several popular candy bars, has recently announced the most comprehensive sustainability initiative within the cocoa industry. More than 5 million farmers, most of whom live in impoverished nations like Cote d'Ivoire and Indonesia, are responsible for growing the cocoa we all enjoy and Mars Chocolate believes this effort will help them while also aiding the industry as a whole.


Guided by tmars candyhe principle of "farmers first," Mars Chocolate has developed a three-pronged initiative to increase the incomes and quality of life for these smallholding farmers. The company is investing in innovations in agricultural science, including recently mapping the cocoa genome, which will help to create more productive cocoa trees; technology transfer efforts, which means ensuring that farmers have the kind of training and material they need for more productive farms; and instituting certification protocols that mandate productivity measures to make certain that certification really leads directly to meaningful income increases for farmers.


Mars Chocolate has pledged to reach the ambitious goal of purchasing 100 percent certified sustainable cocoa by the year 2020. O'Neill and Associates is proud to be working with the company to promote their important leadership efforts in these endeavors.


To learn more about how O'Neill and Associates' public relations team can help your company navigate the media and other issues, please visit our website here.



Federal Aviation Administration Reauthorization Extension

Congress Ends Two-Week FAA Shutdown and Puts Americans Back to Work   


Lost in the debate about raising the debt limit was the shutdown of one of our most essential government agencies, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). FAA authorization expired on July 22nd resulting in the furlough of almost 4,000 FAA employees, the loss of about $30 million a day in excise taxes, and the stalling of vital airport construction projects nationwide that provide an estimated 70,000 jobs. After the debt vote, people finally took notice and on August 5th Congress signed an extension of FAA authorization that will last until Septfaa logo 16th. This extension that will limit some subsidies for rural airports is not ideal but ensures the safety of air travel and allows for much needed economic growth. 


FAA authorization has been caught in partisan quagmire since 2007 and in lieu of passing an actual authorization bill, Congress passed 20 separate extensions of FAA authority in order that air service not be interrupted. Again unable to reach agreement, last month Congress did not pass the expected extension and simply shut down "non essential" FAA functions. Yet the shutdown wasn't as "simple" as some thought it would be. Construction jobs, safety inspections, and other aviation related economic growth was hit hard.


The important lesson here is that shutting down government agencies affects more than government workers.  The aviation industry is a large sector of our economy and 75,000 jobs were directly affected by the shutdown. The private sector market is closely tied to government programs and - as was the case with the FAA - can be hit harder than the public sector when government functions are shut down. As Washington moves forward with streamlining the federal budget, it needs to take into account the effect on American jobs.  



Client Spotlight: Maxwell's Green

Somerville's Newest Innovative Residential Development Breaks Ground      


O'Neill and Associates is proud to provide community relations and public relations services to Davis Square Partners, the development team for Maxwell's Green - Somerville's newest and innovative transit-oriented development. The project officially broke ground at the end of July and launched a website, blog and  Facebook page.


Located less than a milemaxwells green from Davis Square, the $52.5 million residential project will offer a unique and vibrant living experience in the heart of Somerville. Set to open in 2012, the community will feature 184 LEED Certified and Certifiable units, including studio, one-, two- and three-bedroom units and 24 units of affordable housing.


In addition, it will feature a variety of amenities, including a yoga studio, weight room, chef's kitchen, club room, unique wireless work space, theater room, additional green space and unparalleled access to the extension of the Somerville Community Path and the MBTA's Green and Red lines. Maxwell's Green will also offer on-site shared car parking and electric car chargers in each of the four buildings.



Save the Date: Upcoming Events  

O'Neill and Associates' Clients to host inspiring events   


First-Day-of-Issue Ceremony: Client Pilgrim Monument and Provincetown Medward hopper stampuseum (PMPM) is Cape Cod's oldest nonprofit organization and commemorates the history of the Mayflower Pilgrims. This summer, The United States Postal Service and PMPM are hosting the First-Day-of-Issue Ceremony for the tenth stamp in the American Treasures stamp series, a painting by Edward Hopper called The Long Leg. The ceremony will be held on Wednesday, August 24th at 10:30 a.m. at the Monument and will be open to the public on the East Lawn overlooking Long Point Lighthouse, featured in the painting on the stamp. For more information, click here


A Million Laughs for Literacy Gala: Client National Braille Press is a Boston-based nonprofit organization that prints and publishes Braille. The NBP will hold its annual "A million laughs for literacy galaMillion Laughs for Literacy Gala" at the Westin Copley Place on October 14th, hosted by top social and political comedian Jimmy Tingle.  Each year, the NBP presents The Hands On! award at the Gala to an individual who has made a difference in Braille literacy and whose efforts have helped visually impaired people succeed. This year's recipient is Joshua Goldenberg, a seven-year-old boy from Thousand Oaks, California. Joshua is receiving the award for his initiative, "The Joshua Project," an effort to put Braille labels on store shelves, beginning with Trader Joe's and Whole Foods in California. For more information about the event, click here



Senior Vice President Joseph Driscoll on NECN

Joseph Driscoll on Broadside with Jim Braude's Weekly News IQ Quiz      


Senior Vice President Joseph R. Driscoll, a former state representative from Braintree, Mass., was featured alonjoe on necngside Naomi Kooker, a journalist and expert on Boston's restaurant and dining scene, on "Broadside" with Jim Braude's Weekly News IQ Quiz show. The pair faced off against each other to answer questions about pop culture events and other news items. The trivia featured such topics as country flags, cars, and a famous wedding dress! Who won the showdown? Watch the clip here to find out!  




OA Summer Intern Project

O'Neill and Associates' summer interns care for servicemen overseas    

This summer, the interns at O'Neill and Associates, guided by Office Manager Nairi Aprahamian, organized an effort to create care packages for five U.S. servicemen currently deployed overseas. These five men are each connected to an OA intern insummer intern project some way, either as a friend, relative or close acquaintance. For this project, the interns researched which items servicemen prefer in their care packages, set up a donation box in the office and distributed a short blurb on each of the servicemen to all staff members.


By the end of July, the donation box was overflowing with canned foods, toiletries, first-aid products, clothing, DVDs, letters of support and candy, among others. The project also received monetary donations that were used to buy more supplies. Last week, the items were divided evenly into nine separate packages and shipped off to the servicemen. Hopefully, this gesture can make these gentlemen feel a little closer to home while they work to protect our nation. The interns and Nairi thank everyone at the office for being so generous and supportive!



Banker & Tradesman "Best of 2011" Awards

O'Neill and Associates receives Gold medal for Best Public Relations Agency      


B&T best of 2011

O'Neill and Associates is honored to receive the Gold medal in the Banker & Tradesman Best of 2011 awards in the General Public Relations Agency category. O'Neill and Associates has received this award since 2008! Clients Baystate Financial Services, Cannon Design, Boston Harbor Hotel, and Tiger Home Inspection also received awards. For a full list of the "Best of 2011" recipients, click here!  



O'Neill and Associates, New England's leading public relations and government affairs consulting firm, is led by former Lt. Governor Thomas P. O'Neill III. With offices in Boston, MA and Washington, D.C., the agency employs senior level professionals to help clients define the right messages and get those messages to target audiences, including government officials, the media, community leaders and consumers. We serve clients in diverse industries, including financial services, transportation, healthcare, nonprofit, energy, and real estate development.
Contact us toll-free at 1-866-989-4321. Follow us on Twitter at @ONeillandAssoc.

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