Choir from PBP’s Adopted School “Rock the Roof” at the Miss America Parade

Progressive Business Publications is excited by the high-energy start to its seventeenth year with adopted Philadelphia K-8 Elementary School, Cook-Wissahickon (CW).  The Cook-Wissahickon Choir kicked off 2013-14 by winning a place in the Miss America Show Us Your Shoes Parade! CW’s Choir, with more than 35 students in grades 3-8 performing under the direction of Mr. Nicholas D’Orsaneo, is beginning its second year.  Last year they enjoyed the right to march in the city’s Thanksgiving Parade.

In September 2013 the historic Miss America pageant returned to Atlantic City.  Thousands of spectators enjoyed Saturday’s gorgeous weather as the traditional Miss America “Shoe” Parade rolled along the legendary Atlantic City Boardwalk.  CW’s students won a competition to perform the song “God Bless America” as part of a youth ensemble with schools from across the region.  They were fantastic!  The huge crowd along the parade route cheered throughout, and the Choir members had a blast seeing all of the “princesses”, as they dubbed the contestants.  The Choir students beamed as their performance at Boardwalk Hall was telecast live on PHL-17.   What a night!  What an experience!

Just prior to stepping off along the Boardwalk, the Choir posed on the beach with a huge sign thanking PBP’s Founder & CEO, Ed Satell.   Choir Director Nick D’Orsaneo said: “Mr. Satell has always been one of our biggest fans and strongest supporters. Without his generosity and Progressive Business Publications’ sponsorship and continued support for the school for seventeen years, events like this Miss America Parade could not be a reality for these talented and exuberant students.”  The attached video shows their enthusiastic gratitude.

Progressive Business Publications is delighted to congratulate its philanthropy partner, Cook-Wissahickon School, on the terrific event.

Cook Wissahickon Wins Energy Efficient School Award to Go Green

CW's new entryProgressive Business Publications proudly congratulates its long-time education partner and adopted school, Cook-Wissahickon K-9 Elementary (CW), for their recognition in Pennsylvania’s Energy Efficient School Awards.

CW was one of only four winners statewide.  At a time when the budget for the School District of Philadelphia keeps shrinking, CW has found a way to actively and effectively save money for the District through their impressive energy conservation.  In fact, CW has the goal of reducing the school community’s energy consumption by several percentage points each year!

CW is one of three District schools chosen to pilot an initiative for reducing energy consumption.  The school community embraced the challenge, reducing their energy consumption by 5% in the last year alone.  The students themselves developed a program implementing practical and thoughtful energy conservation at every grade level.  They’re tracking their energy consumption on the national Energy Star benchmarking website and are aiming to reach the magic number of 75.  That will mean CW uses 40% less consumable energy than typical buildings.  In fact, CW is on track to achieve Energy Star status in 2013!

One time-consuming but exciting project has been the exterior makeover.  Through a grant, CW’s outside appearance has been greatly improved and its conservation efforts expanded.  Immediately visible are the 42 trees planted along the perimeter to aid with shading and cooling.

A new 10,000 square-foot meadow replaces concrete and weeds and will allow CW students to study rainwater runoff, storm water management, and urban wildlife.  What an opportunity for our students and their dedicated teachers!

We are delighted that “our” school has taken the initiative and focused on sustainable energy conservation.  It’s a terrific lesson for all of us.

Congratulations to the visionary Faculty, the super CW students, their families, our outstanding Principal Karen Thomas, and the wonderful Wissahickon Sustainability Council (CW’s Green Committee).  Due to the efforts of all these individuals, great things keep happening for and at Cook-Wissahickon Elementary School!

Cook Wissahickon’s Choir Hits All the Right Notes

Progressive Business Partnership with Cook WissahickonEd Satell and Progressive Business Publications (PBP) adopted the Cook-Wissahickon K-5 Elementary School (CW) more than sixteen years ago.  Strengthened and supported by Progressive Business Publication’s programs, CW’s school environment became positive and the school itself expanded to its current position as a K-8 elementary and middle school.

As school district funding shrunk, particularly for the extracurricular programs that engage and inspire students, Progressive Business Publications began to support additional initiatives.  CW’s high-energy young music director, Nick D’Orsaneo, proposed forming a choir to channel students’ interest in music. The Choir program has been very successful, with more than 40 students in grades 3-8 participating.  Being a Choir member is a real commitment, with required practices to create their “sound”.

Their hard work has paid off. This Spring CW’s Choir qualified to compete in the Hershey Park competition, and took First Place!  The School community was thrilled!

To make the victory even more exciting, CW’s Choir will now perform for the 2013 Miss America Pageant during the televised annual pageant parade!  What a great year for this positive and empowering program.

Progressive Business Publications salutes Director Nick D’Osaneo for his vision and dedication.  We proudly compliment the students for their dedication to practicing and performing, and for the wonderful music they make!

PBP Salutes Cook Wisshickon’s Class of 2013

“We are really appreciative for your continuing dedication to our school throughout the years. We have grown to be well-rounded teenagers prepared to make the transition to high school. There is nothing we can do to repay you, all we can say is thank you from the bottom of our hearts.”

Cook Wissahickon Graduation

Cook Wissahickon Graduation

With these words the Cook-Wissahickon School Class of 2013 dedicated their colorful and charming yearbook to Ed Satell and Progressive Business Publications. The Class of 2013 opened their yearbook with the dedication, then opened their graduation ceremony with their Class President offering a wonderful acknowledgement of Progressive Business Publications as well.

It’s always inspiring when young people say thank you. This group did so enthusiastically, citing all the reasons they were grateful, from the programs and support in their early school years to the company’s commitment to the eighth grade, including sponsoring the graduation celebration, yearbook, and the memorable field trip. In this case it’s very deserved, since Progressive Business Publications has truly been a part of their school community since their kindergarten.

The families in attendance were equally vocal in their thanks for all the initiatives Progressive Business Publications provides for the school. It was moving to hear parents tell stories about how much their children would miss the after school program, or how much they loved their Mentor – both special programs provided by Progressive Business Publications. One grandmother, herself an educator, said her granddaughter had benefitted tremendously from the enriched programs at CW, and thanked the company for the great work it does in support of educational nonprofits!

We wish the Class of 2013 all future success!

Executive Leaders Radio Award

Progressive Business Publication's Phil Ahr with Karen Thomas, principal of Cook-Wissahickon Elementary School

Progressive Business Publication’s Phil Ahr with Karen Thomas, Principal of Cook-Wissahickon Elementary School

“Paying it Forward”…  Last week PBP’s CEO was recognized for his constant commitment to that concept.  Although he’s received numerous philanthropic awards over the years, each is unique in its focus.  The CEO Philanthropy Award is sponsored by Executive Leaders Radio Program, a hugely-syndicated business news program.   The award allows twenty select nonprofits to honor the individuals who support them.  Each nonprofit representative speaks briefly about the CEO honored.

The Principal of Cook-Wissahickon K-8 Elementary School (CW) truly made her comments stand out.  She said that although her relationship with Ed Satell is only a few years old, his relationship with her school is sixteen years old.  Sixteen years ago Ed & his company adopted CW and were key in “turning the school around”.  She described the before and after-school programs Ed’s company developed, funds and runs, the Mentor Program, the Class Trips—and so much more.  Karen said that other Principals find it hard to believe any private company could do so much for such a sustained time commitment.  And that made me think of a story older than any student in th
e school, one we’d recently shared with Karen about the beginning of the PBP-CW partnership.

When Ed dove into the partnership, he did so completely, and in spite of being a CEO, he personally researched how to run an after-school correctly, visiting area institutions to see what worked.  That’s why I think this award is unique, since it recognizes not just philanthropy, but the human vision and commitment behind it, the dedication to “paying it forward”.

The award was accepted by Phil Ahr, an original and still-involved member of the Mentor Program.