2008 BBB Torch Award Winners Announced! Dateline NBC's Chris Hansen To Deliver Keynote

September 10, 2008

WORCESTER, MA  -  BBB of Central New England announced today that two area businesses have been chosen to receive the distinguished and coveted Torch Award for marketplace ethics.  They are Home Staff, LLC, of Worcester, and JM Remodeling of Webster.

"We received a personal call from the new president of the Better Business Bureau informing us of the selection committee's decision. We were absolutely thrilled," said John Mason, owner of JM Remodeling of Webster.  "The remodeling industry is so competitive and, with so many companies striving to operate with integrity and respect for the consumer, we were very honored that BBB chose our company."

Nancy Cahalen, the president and CEO of BBB, commented on the selection process, saying, "Having met with the selection committee for this year's awards, I can say that I'm quite impressed by the level of diligence, research, and follow-through demonstrated by our judges throughout the entire process."

Home Staff, LLC, of Worcester, a home healthcare agency serving Central New England families since 1977, was also named a recipient of the prestigious award.  Angela Rocheleau, CEO of Home Staff, is honored by this praise. "Home Staff has been accredited by BBB since 1994 and, while we've been diligently meeting our clients' needs over the years, we are very proud to be honored for doing business the way it should be done.  So, When the BBB president (Cahalen) called to tell us, I was delighted! It's nice to see that there's an organization which really pays attention to how the consumer is treated."

Chris Hansen, of Dateline NBC fame, will be the keynote speaker at the Torch Awards, taking place on October 29, 2008, at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Worcester, where approximately 500 business owners are expected to attend.  Hansen's investigative background is quite impressive and extensive.  He began his breakthrough investigative reporting on online sexual predators in September of 2004.  Eleven dramatic hidden camera investigations have exposed over 250 men who target young teenagers over the internet.  

In April of 2007, Hansen reported in "To Catch an ID Thief," an unprecedented investigation into the massive billion-dollar epidemic of identity theft.  Using Dateline's signature hidden camera techniques, the report followed the trails of an international identity theft ring, capturing for the first time on network television how the crime works and some of the people that may be behind the process.

This event will sell out, so it is recommended that interested parties purchase early.  Tickets are $70 per person, or $650 for a table of 10.  Some high-visibility corporate sponsorships are still available for this well-known event, and offer very good value and significant media coverage to sponsors in.  More detail on the Platinum Torch, Gold Torch, Silver Torch, and Bronze Torch sponsorship opportunities is available at http://central-westernma.bbb.org/torch or by calling Domenic Mercurio at 508-755-3340 Ext. 102. For reservations to the Torch Awards, please call Rose LaFleur at 413-594-2163 Ext. 105.