ulgadeTORRINGTON: Greg Ugalde, a builder and developer with more than 25 years of experience in the Connecticut home building industry, was elected as the 2018 first vice chairman of the National Association of Home Builders [NAHB[. The election was made during the association’s International Builders’ Show in Orlando, Fla.

Ugalde is president and chief legal officer of Torrington-based T&M Building Co., Inc., one of the largest home builders in the state. Since its founding in 1962, T&M has built more than 3,500 new homes in more than 40 Connecticut communities. He is also the founder and owner of GFU Investments LLC, a builder/developer minority-owned business that focuses on urban development.

Najia KhalidNEW HAVEN: Najia Khalid, Co-Chair of Wiggin and Dana’s Immigration & Nationality Law & Compliance practice. is promoted to partner as of January 1. According to W&D Najia has “dedicated her legal career to business immigration law – an area that truly hits home for the female attorney and her family.”

Najia’s parents originated from Pakistan and settled in England, Najia’s father left Pakistan to pursue an engineering degree in England, began his career there with a multinational corporation. Najia was born in Croydon, England in the 1980s, Najia’s father was transferred to the U.S. and went through the employment-based permanent residency process to obtain a green card with his employer. Najia remained a green card holder until the horrific 9/11 attacks – an event that the company’s release says “spurred her to seek U.S. citizenship.”

DiscoveryExterior 300x194BRIDGEPORT: The Discovery Museum has hired former Bridgeport Mayor and State Senator Bill Finch as executive director. The appointment comes as the museum celebrates its 60th anniversary.

"I've always been a big fan of the Discovery Museum," said Finch a Bridgeport native, who says he grew up nearby, and visited the museum as a kid.

"That plays a major role in my excitement for this opportunity to help the museum grow and thrive today, tomorrow, and for generations to come."

vanossHAMDEN: Vincent Van Oss of North Haven has been appointed Director of Marketing for Quinnipiac University Online. The University offers a range of online bachelor's, master's and doctoral degrees and certificate programs, as well as undergraduate courses.

According to the college Van Oss is responsible for implementing the strategic planning, coordination and management of all marketing efforts for the university’s online and corporate training programs. Quinnipiac currently offers 17 online undergraduate and graduate programs through its School of Business, School of Communications, School of Education, School of Health Sciences and School of Nursing.

defrancesco melintaNEW HAVEN: Melinta Therapeutics, Inc. [Nasdaq: MLNT], a commercial-stage company discovering, developing, and commercializing novel antibiotics to treat serious bacterial infections, today announced the appointment of Lisa DeFrancesco as senior vice president of investor relations (IR) reporting to Dan Wechsler, president and chief executive officer.

DeFrancesco is a seasoned healthcare industry executive, with 18 years of experience in investor relations, finance and communications. She joins Melinta from Allergan [NYSE: AGN] where she served most recently as vice president of IR.

Dobbins Maureen Shadowbox 141x212HAMDEN: Maureen J. Dobbins, Director, Business Development, has been named Vice President and an officer of Hoffman Architecs. Dobbins hash more than 25 years of experience in marketing and business development for architectural services, and earned a bachelor’s degree in management information systems from Western Connecticut State University and a master of business administration (MBA) degree in marketing management and information systems from Pace University in New York.

An owner of the firm, she will celebrate her 10th anniversary with Hoffmann Architects in 2018. Dobbins is a member of the Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA) Southern Connecticut, Eastern Region of APPA Leadership in Educational Facilities (ERAPPA), CoreNet Global, the Construction Institute, International Facility Management Association (IFMA), New England Healthcare Engineers’ Society (NEHES), and Professional Women in Construction (PWC). A long-term board member and officer for BOMA Southern Connecticut, Dobbins takes the helm as President of the organization in January 2018. She lives in Redding, Connecticut.