The Western Massachusetts Economic Development Council (EDC) announced the hiring of two new professionals, Kayla Soto and Aurora Pierangelo. With years of experience in their respective fields and a shared passion for driving growth and development in Western Mass., they are well-positioned to contribute to the mission of the EDC.
Soto has joined the team as the new associate director of Economic Development and Special Projects. Originally from Manchester, Conn., she earned her bachelor’s degree in educational studies from Elms College and her master’s degree in higher educational leadership from Drexel University. With a professional background rooted in academia, community, and workforce development, she previously served as assistant director of Admissions and Collegiate Admission manager for Hillyer College at the University of Hartford, as well as the Lincoln Technical Institute and the Hartford Job Corps. She is also an accomplished entrepreneur with an online children’s clothing store.
As a proud Latina businesswoman, Soto aspires to bring her diverse background and passion for growth to the EDC team. As associate director of Economic Development and Special Projects, she will be responsible for overall project and program management, planning, and leading events for the Western Massachusetts EDC, as well as building community and partnerships with regional leaders and stakeholders.
“Kayla has hit the ground running, and we are excited to have her on the team,” said Xiomara DeLobato, vice president and chief to staff at the Western Massachusetts EDC. “Her expertise in community outreach and higher education, combined with her entrepreneurial spirit, will be invaluable as we work to drive growth in Western Massachusetts.”
Pierangelo joined the team as the new accounting specialist. With a diverse background and experience in managing complex organizations, she is responsible for managing various financial portfolios of the EDC. Previously, she served as assistant director of the Fraternity Managers Assoc. at the University of Rhode Island, where she managed 18 fraternity, sorority, and independent living-learning communities. There, she expanded house director training programs, managed new software implementations, and improved financial-management practices.
A Western Mass. native, Pierangelo graduated with her MBA from Bay Path University and a bachelor’s degree in music theatre from SUNY Geneseo. She also manages a nonprofit, the Wilbraham Welcome Project. She is passionate about giving back to her community and excited to bring this same enthusiasm to her work with the Western Massachusetts EDC.
“We are thrilled to welcome Aurora to the EDC team,” said Richard Sullivan, president and CEO of the Western Massachusetts EDC. “With her excellent financial background in managing organizations and developing programs to support staff and community members, Aurora is the perfect fit for our team.”