John King, president and CEO of Vermont Public Television, the statewidepublic television network, has been appointed to two boards. He waselected treasurer and executive committee member of NETA, the NationalEducational Telecommunications Association. NETA is a professionalassociation based in Columbia, S.C., that serves public televisionstations and educational entities. Its mission is to provide qualityprogramming, educational resources, professional development, managementsupport and national representation for its members.King has also been appointed to the Assembly of Overseers ofDartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center in Hanover, N.H. The overseers act asadvisers to the board of trustees on hospital affairs and customer andcommunity relations.He holds a master’s degree in public administration from HarvardUniversity, a bachelor’s degree from Johnson State College and anassociate’s degree from Champlain College. He and his family live inColchester.
The recipients of the International Association of Culinary Professionals (IACP) Awards of Excellence were announced on Saturday, April 24 during the 26th annual conference of the IACP in Baltimore, Maryland at the Baltimore Convention Center.The award for outstanding Vocational Cooking School was given to The New England Culinary Institute (NECI), located in Montpelier, Vermont, an IACP-member cooking school that provides a superior educational experience for students pursuing a career in the culinary industry. NECI offers an AOS in Culinary Arts, AOS in Food and Beverage Management, AOS in Baking and Pastry, BA in Food and Beverage Management and Certificate Programs in both Baking and Pastry and Basic Cooking.New England Culinary Institute has been training future chefs and food and beverage professionals since 1980. The award was given in recognition of the outstanding education the schools provides, including one of the smallest student to teacher ratios in the industry. In addition, students learn their skills in eleven food service operations, including bakeries, popular priced restaurants, fine dining restaurants cafeteria and catering. Students spend 75% of their time working with chefs to produce meals for paying customers.The NECI educational model is ‘standards based” which means students are not graded on their culinary skills or knowledge, but rather they have to meet or exceed a standard of competency in each and every skill. This ensures that they leave for their internship with a strong culinary competence and understanding.Alton Brown, ’97 graduate of NECI and creator of Good Eats on the Food Network, says, “ With an education from NECI, you have the benefits of both the ‘real world’ education and NECI’s strong reputation in the industry. You are prepared to follow your dreams.”Founded in 1978, the International Association of Culinary Professionals (IACP) has approximately 4,000 members worldwide, representing a “who’s who” in the world of food and include cooking teachers and cooking school owners; caterers, chefs and restaurateurs; food writers and cookbook authors; editors and publishers of the world’s consumer and trade press; food stylists and photographers; vintners; television personalities; recipe developers and many others with a special interest in the culinary arts. This unique, diverse membership sets trends, shapes opinion and influences buying habits of millions of consumers.
VT’s Everything Equine Continues to GrowExperts & More Entertainment Highlight “Versatile Horse”Exhibitor & Vendor Space Available for Two-Day ShowESSEX JUNCTION, Vt. — One of the largest equine educational events in New England continues to grow as plans are finalized for the 2007 Everything Equine show on April 28-29 at Champlain Valley Exposition (CVE).Part educational event, part consumer trade show and part social get-together for New England and New York horse lovers – Everything Equine is a valuable resource for everyone in the equine industry to get the latest health and equine care information through some 60 seminars and demonstrations. Advance discount tickets go on sale March 1 at a variety of outlets.The 2007 theme is “The Versatile Horse,” and organizers plan to highlight the impact horse owners have on the state’s economy and the many ways horses are used from sport to work. In the past, organizers say, Everything Equine itself has generated approximately $2 million dollars in economic impact to Vermont and the region.It’s a premier venue for businesses and organizations serving the equine industry in Vermont and New England. Space is still available for the April 28-29 weekend show that is expected to attract upwards of 8,000 people. For information about being an exhibitor, call Susan Petrie at (802) 878-5545, email email@example.com(link sends e-mail) or visit http://cvexpo.org/eevendors.aspx(link is external)Another great value of the show is the many opportunities for hands-on experiences and training with top experts from across the country. There is much to learn for those new to horses and those with years of experience from the Equine Extension programs and publications available at the event. Leading this year’s stable of national experts is Lynn Palm, a renowned competitor, trainer and instructor with dozens of World and Reserve World Championships.The annual “Horsin’ Around” Variety Show also offers horse enthusiasts a way to see horses in action. Two shows on Saturday are planned, 12:30 and 6:30 p.m. Admission is separate for the variety show and tickets are limited.Another new feature this year is the Sunday afternoon Stallion Service Auction to benefit the Vermont 4-H Horse programs. The stud services of about 10 top-of-breed stallions will be auctioned and all the stallions are expected to be on-site for the show.The all-indoor show is open Saturday, April 28 from 9 am to 5 pm and Sunday, April 29 from 9 am to 4 pm. Advance discount tickets will be available on March 1. Tickets are $6, day of show $8. A two-day pass is available for $12. Children under 5 are free with an adult. Call 802-878-5545 or visit www.cvexpo.org(link is external) for ticket locations and information on group sales.Tickets are available at Guys Farm and Yard in Morrisville, Williston and Montpleier, Tony’s Tack Shop in Essex Junction, Shearer Chevrolet in South Burlington, Adirondack Tack in Plattsburgh, NY, The Horse Works and by calling (802) 878-5545.”The original intent of this event was to bring together the equine community — all breeds and all disciplines — to make a positive impact on education, agriculture, and the state economy,” explained Tom Oddy, CVE’s director of special events. “I think in just a few years we have accomplished that and so much more.”Recognition of Everything Equine’s success came with two major awards in 2006. “In December, we received the ‘2006 Non-Fair Agricultural Event of the Year’ from the International Association of Fairs and Expositions” Award of Excellence program, sponsored by John Deere. The Vermont Chamber of Commerce also named Everything Equine to its 2007 “Top Ten Vermont Event” list, based on the success of the 2006 event and its potential for growth,” Oddy noted.One of the events founders, University of Vermont Equine Extension Specialist Betsy Greene, recalled that when Everything Equine was originally conceived three years ago, they hoped for 1,000 attendees. Nearly five times that attended in the first year and within three years attendance topped 7,500 in 2006.”Growing attendance and our recent awards demonstrate the benefits of the community partnership between Champlain Valley Exposition, UVM Extension, 4-H, private business and other non-profit organization all working together as key stakeholders,” Oddy said.Everything Equine HighlightsFor 2007, a full line-up of nationally-known experts will provide information about equine health, training and driving, saddle fitting, dentistry, alternative therapies, emergency aid and more.Seminar topics range from nutrition, health to equine reproduction. There are workshops on spring tune-up: conditioning tips, using music in training and how to turn your horse hobby into a viable business.There will even be a series of seminars aimed at helping the first-time or novice horse owner get off to successful start. During the two-day show exhibitors will display their latest equipment, nutrition supplements, and equine-related supplies.Meanwhile, over in the seminar rooms and Poulin Grain Horse Arena and Purina Mills Demonstration Pen, horse-lovers will have a chance to see everything from jumping demonstrations to a live, endoscopic exam performed by Dr. Philip D. van Harreveld, DVM.A perennial star of the show — Hollywood screenwriter John Fusco’s superstar horse, Oscar – who played “Hidalgo” in the Disney movie of the same name — will be back again this year. There will be autographed photos and a chance to meet Oscar and other Colonial Spanish Mustangs brought to the show by trainer, Stephanie Lockhart of Stowe, Vt.One of the big hits of Everything Equine has been the Vermont Horse Council’s (VHC) annual equine variety show, “Horsin’ Around.” Lynn Dow of VHC brought together 13 acts for the sold-out show last year. Organizers added a second show on Saturday afternoon to meet the demand for tickets this year. Proceeds benefit the VHC to further activities in the Vermont equine community. Shows will be at 12:30 and 6:30 p.m. Purchasing advance tickets ($14 for the matinee includes Equine show admission and $10 for the evening show) is encouraged.Among the returning highlights expected this year at “Horsin’ Around” – the 16-horse drill team from Pond Hill Ranch Pro Rodeo in Castleton, Vt., miniature horses, draft horses and everything in between during the 90-minute show.And everyone is wondering how the Perry Family of Brownington, Vt., will top last year’s act when Neal Perry dressed as Darth Vader and rode into the ring on his Morgan stallion Chadwick’s Benjamin to battle his 10-year-old son, Spencer, dressed as Luke Skywalker. The phrase, “Use the horse, Luke,” came to mind for Star Wars fans in the bleachers as the father and son battled with light sabers.On Sunday, April 29, the Vermont State 4-H Foundation will hold a stallion service auction. As of mid-February, the services of a Morgan, Canadian, American Paint Horse and a Bashkir Curly have been donated. Details are available at http://cvexpo.org/stallions.aspx(link is external)The auction will raise funds for 4-H in Vermont, and in particular the 4-H Horse Project, which has 85 horse clubs and more than 900 members in the state.The auctioneer is Louise Moon Rosalie. “The bidding should be brisk and to add to the excitement of the day, each stallion will be on site during the auction,” said Kurt Reichelt, the UVM Extension’s auction organizer.Also new this year, on-site camping for recreational vehicles will be available.Impact on the EconomyUVM Extension’s Greene is thrilled by the growing attendance and enthusiasm shown at Everything Equine. “The combined strengths of UVM Extension, the Exposition, and Vermont horse businesses and equine industry experts from the region make this one of the top shows in the Northeast.,” she said.”It was evident that people who are passionate and focused on their animals really find what they come looking for during the weekend,” Greene said. “We bring together horse-related businesses, riding clubs and industry experts under one roof.It makes for a great weekend, especially for someone thinking about getting a horse who wants to talk with hobbyists, professionals and serious competitors about ‘everything equine,'” she added.”Everything Equine” is sponsored by University of Vermont Extension, Poulin Grain, Inc., Purina Mills, Guys Farm and Yard, Shearer GMC & Shearer Chevrolet, Blue Seal Feeds, Inc., Horsemen’s Yankee Pedlar, The Equine Journal, The Horse Works, Tony’s Tack Shop, Nutrena and Champlain Valley Exposition.Champlain Valley Exposition is a non-profit organization with a mission to promote agriculture, education, entertainment and commerce for Vermonters. Learn more at www.cvexpo.org(link is external).
Vermont Quadricentennial Commission Endorses Events for 2009MONTPELIER, Vt. — The Lake Champlain Quadricentennial Commission Events Committee has given the green light to more than 40 event proposals for the 2009 celebration that will honor the anniversary of Samuel de Champlain’s arrival to the lake in 1609. Application review and approval is ongoing with even more events anticipated to be added over the next several weeks and months.While the year-long celebration will feature several unique, special events in and around the Champlain Valley, the Lake Champlain Quadricentennial will also feature existing events that explore Quadricentennial themes. Events recently approved for the Quadricentennial celebration include the Regatta for Lake Champlain, the Winooski River Sojourn, Teddy Roosevelt Day in Isle La Motte and the D’Olobaratz Voyage, which is a weekend race between re-created French and British longboats on Lake Champlain.”Many fellow Vermonters who are deeply passionate about this historic occasion have volunteered their time to organize festivals, educational initiatives and infrastructure improvements,” said Bruce Hyde, chair of the Lake Champlain Quadricentennial Commission. “This is a once-in-a-lifetime event, and we want Vermonters and visitors to experience all that our wonderful state has to offer in 2009 and in years to come.”The event proposals approved in this first wave of applications by the Events Committee by will be included in the first promotional flyer to accompany a Vermont delegation to France in May to commemorate when Samuel de Champlain left France for North America. The flyer will also be distributed by the Schooner Lois McClure’s crew as she heads north for Quebec City’s 400th anniversary celebration in July. This information will be printed in both French and English.”The goal of the commission is to promote a variety of annual Vermont events that will have a Quadricentennial twist for 2009,” said Commission member Marilyn Cormier, who chairs the Commemoration and Events Committee. “There are dozens of outstanding events held in Vermont year after year, and we look forward to working together to make 2009 a great success.”The 26-member commission and dozens of volunteers are working together to organize events, educational components, infrastructure improvements and cultural exhibits that will take place in the Lake Champlain Basin and around Vermont. The one-time signature events will be supported by successful fundraising by Johnston Consulting, on behalf of The Champlain 400 Legacy Fund Inc., a nonprofit corporation created to support the Lake Champlain Quadricentennial Commission.Vermonters celebrated the Tercentennary in 1909 and the 350th anniversary in 1959. The Quadricentennial is expected to draw hundreds of thousands of visitors to Vermont throughout 2009.”We see the 400th anniversary as a remarkable opportunity for some of Vermonts finest companies, as well as national brands, to forever link their message to an historic event organized by a state that deeply values its history, culture, natural resources and its impact on future generations,” Cormier said.For more information, visit www.celebratechamplain.org/events(link is external).###
WATERBURY, Vt.–(BUSINESS WIRE)– Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, Inc. (NASDAQ: GMCR) today announced that management is scheduled to make a presentation regarding the Company on Tuesday, June 9, 2009 at the Piper Jaffray Consumer Conference in New York City.About Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, Inc.As a leader in the specialty coffee industry, Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, Inc. (NASDAQ: GMCR) is recognized for its award-winning coffees, innovative brewing technology, and socially responsible business practices. GMCR’s operations are managed through two business units. The Specialty Coffee business unit produces coffee, tea and hot cocoa from its family of brands, including Tully’s Coffee®, Green Mountain Coffee® and Newman’s Own® Organics coffee. The Keurig business unit is a pioneer and leading manufacturer of gourmet single-cup brewing systems. K-Cup® portion packs for Keurig® Single-Cup Brewers are produced by a variety of licensed brands, including Green Mountain Coffee and Tully’s Coffee. GMCR supports local and global communities by offsetting 100% of its direct greenhouse gas emissions, investing in Fair Trade Certified™ coffee, and donating at least five percent of its pre-tax profits to social and environmental projects. Visit www.GreenMountainCoffee.com(link is external) and www.Keurig.com(link is external) for more information.GMCR routinely posts information that may be of importance to investors in the Investor Services section of its web site, including news releases and its complete financial statements, as filed with the SEC. The Company encourages investors to consult this section of its web site regularly for important information and news. Additionally, by subscribing to the Company’s automatic email news release delivery, individuals can receive news directly from GMCR as it is released.
Entergy Corporation today announced it has provided to Vermont Attorney General William Sorrell the results of its independent internal investigation into alleged contradictory or misleading information provided to the state government by company officials about underground piping at the Vermont Yankee nuclear plant.The report, prepared by the law firm of Morgan Lewis and Bockius LLP, did not find that any Entergy Nuclear Vermont Yankee employees intentionally misled the Vermont Public Service Board, the Department of Public Service, a Public Oversight Panel assessing the plant’s reliability as part of its application for renewal of its operating license, or a contracting firm working for the panel, Nuclear Safety Associates.The report noted that the communications in question were made by Entergy employees in the context of the scope defined by the state’s contractor, Nuclear Safety Associates, in performing the reliability assessment. The Entergy responses were limited to only pipes that touch soil (not those encased in concrete), that carry liquid (not gaseous matter) and that are part of whole systems as defined by law. However, the Entergy employees’ failure to specify the context of their communication led to misunderstandings and, taken out of that context, the responses were incomplete and misleading, the report maintained.As a result of that failure, Entergy has removed five senior Vermont Yankee employees from their positions at Vermont Yankee and placed them on administrative leave. They are the vice president for operations, director of nuclear safety assurance, manager of licensing, technical specialist and senior project manager.The company also reprimanded an additional six managerial employees. All the discipline taken had financial consequences for the employees involved. Michael Colomb, Entergy Vermont Yankee site vice president, was reprimanded for failure to maintain an organization that adhered to the highest standards of conduct in all actions and communications.In a statement, Colomb said he was disappointed in how the contradictory or misleading information was given to the state and he, as the lead Entergy official at Vermont Yankee, took responsibility for what happened.”While there was no intentional wrongdoing, it is not consistent with our expectations at Vermont Yankee or in the nuclear industry, nor is it consistent with our values at Entergy,” Colomb said.Entergy Corporation’s online address is www.entergy.com(link is external)SOURCE Entergy Corporation. MONTPELIER, Vt., Feb. 24 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ —
Weekly unemployment claims declined dramatically last week after increasing the previous two weeks. For the week of March 6, 2010, there were 897 new regular benefit claims for Unemployment Insurance, a decrease of 498 from the week before. Altogether 15,463 new and continuing claims were filed, a decrease of 54 from a week ago and 2,814 fewer than a year earlier. The Department also processed 4,647 First Tier claims for benefits under Emergency Unemployment Compensation, 2008 (EUC08), 96 fewer than a week ago. In addition, there were 3,389 Second Tier claims for benefits processed under the EUC08 program, which is an increase of 32 from the week before. The Unemployment Weekly Report can be found at: http://www.vtlmi.info/(link is external). Previously released Unemployment Weekly Reports and other UI reports can be found at: http://www.vtlmi.info/lmipub.htm#uc(link is external)
Kurt M. Swenson (7) ** *Pamela G. Sheiffer** AME AND ADDRESS OF BENEFICIAL OWNER (1) – 5,000 – PERCENT OF CLASS NUMBER (2) 15,000 38.8% 6.5% 144,875 Kevin C. Swenson (6)47 Straws Point RoadRye, NH 03870 – Kuby Gottlieb Special Value Fund, LP(4)20 North Wacker Drive, Suite1416Chicago, IL 60606 3.2% 35,000 – Robert Pope46 Grand View Farm RoadBarre, VT 05641-8335 – 17.5% NUMBER *Frederick E. Webster Jr.** – *James L. Fox** 29,126 1,005,000 1,023,489 5.3% Dimensional Fund Advisors, Inc (5) 1299 Ocean Avenue Santa Monica, CA 90401 1,063,252 – 159,875 – 19.5%Richard C. Kimball ** 39.3% – 29,126 29,200 – 5,000 – North Star Investment Management Corp. (3)20 North Wacker Drive, Suite 1416Chicago, IL 60606 22.9% – 45,000 739,551 8.8% 15.4% 1.1% 312,531 *All directors and executive officers as a group (9 persons) – – – SHARES OF CLASS B COMMON STOCK BENEFICIALLY OWNED 38.6% – 72,126 – PERCENT OF CLASS (2) *Laura A. Plude (10)** Rock of Ages Corporation,Rock of Ages Corporation (NASDAQ:ROAC), based in Barre, announced Monday that it has entered into a definitive merger agreement with Swenson Granite Company LLC, based in Concord, NH. Shareholders of Rock of Ages will receive $5.25 per share in cash, valued at about $39 million, and Swenson Granite will acquire 100 percent ownership of Rock of Ages.What this means for employment in Vermont is unknown at this time. Rock of Ages employs 230, according to Vermont Business Magazine. Net revenues in 2009 were $21,682,316. Net income was $802,324, or $.11 per share. The company lost over $2 million in 2008, or $.28 per share. Rock of Ages stock went up nearly 26 percent following the announcement on Monday, up $1.06 to $5.16. Its 52-week high-low is $2.65-$5.16. In May, Swenson Granite offered an unsolicited bid of $4.38 per share. At least one shareholder balked at the sale. Rock of Ages reported in an SEC filing following the merger announcement in May that: “A purported shareholder of Rock of Ages has commenced a purported class action lawsuit against Rock of Ages.” The shareholder was unnamed. However, institutional investors North Star Investment Management Corp and Kuby Gottlieb Special Value Fund, LP of Chicago, which own together 24.2 percent of the Class A shares, sent a letter in June (SEE BELOW) to the Rock of Ages board suggesting that the initial proposal undervalued the company, whose financial situation had rebounded somewhat in the last year. Peter Gottlieb and Eric Kuby subsequently sent a letter to the Board Tuesday (October 19, 2010) lending their approval to the sale. Kuby Gottlieb wrote in part: “Whereas we recognize that the proposal offers liquidity and premium to the previously depressed stock price, we believe that the true value of the company is substantially higher. We have been patient investors in the company for almost nine years and believe that the company is finally in a position to generate the levels of profits that initially attracted us to their shares.”Rock of Ages announced on August 10 that net income for the second quarter of 2010 increased 9 percent to $1,561,000, or $.21 per share, which included costs associated with “the exploration of strategic options” and shareholder lawsuit expenses of $493,000, or $0.07 per share. For the second quarter of 2009, net income was $1,433,000, or $.19 per share. Revenue for this year’s second quarter increased 2 percent to $14,663,000 compared to $14,424,000 for the second quarter of 2009.Swenson Granite’s Chairman Kurt Swenson is the former CEO of Rock of Ages and is its non-executive board chairman. Kurt Swenson and his brother Kevin Swenson are the largest individual shareholders, representing nearly 40 percent of voting shares. Together and with other associates they control about 81 percent of the voting shares. Swenson Granite had been Rock of Ages’ parent company until the company went private in 1997 under the Rock of Ages tradename and based in Barre. In a statement announcing the deal, the company said: “The Rock of Ages Board of Directors, based in part on the unanimous recommendation of a special committee of three Rock of Ages independent directors, unanimously adopted, and recommends that shareholders of the Company vote for approval of, the merger agreement. The special committee’s independent financial advisor has delivered an opinion to the effect that the $5.25 per share to be received by Rock of Ages shareholders in the merger is fair, from a financial point of view, to such shareholders. The $5.25 per share price represents a 57% premium to the average closing price of Rock of Ages Class A common stock for the 30 days prior to the May 7, 2010 announcement of Swenson Granite’s initial proposal to acquire 100% ownership of Rock of Ages, and a 84% premium to the average closing price for the 12 months prior to the May 7, 2010 announcement.”Consummation of the merger is conditioned upon, in addition to approval of the merger agreement by the majority vote of Rock of Ages’ Class A and Class B common stock, voting together, approval by a majority of the outstanding shares of Class A common stock, excluding shares held by members of Swenson Granite. Rock of Ages will schedule a special meeting of its shareholders for the purpose of obtaining shareholder approval of the merger agreement.”Kurt Swenson, the Chairman of Swenson Granite and non-executive Chairman of Rock of Ages, together with his brother, Kevin Swenson, Vice President of Swenson Granite, and Robert Pope, President and Chief Executive Officer of Swenson Granite, own approximately 71% of Swenson Granite. They, along with certain other members of Swenson Granite who are also Rock of Ages shareholders, have agreed with Swenson Granite to vote their shares, representing approximately 81% of the total voting power of all Rock of Ages shares, in favor of approval of the merger agreement.”The merger agreement includes various other customary conditions, but does not contain a financing condition. People’s United Bank and Key Bank, National Association have committed, subject to customary conditions, to provide debt financing for the transaction.”Prior to the merger, Kurt Swenson, Kevin Swenson, Robert Pope and certain other members of Swenson Granite who are also shareholders of Rock of Ages, will contribute to Swenson Granite a total of 258,326 Class A shares and 2,449,793 Class B shares of Rock of Ages in exchange for additional shares of membership interest in Swenson Granite, and will not receive the $5.25 per share cash merger price for those Rock of Ages shares.”Covington Associates, LLC served as financial advisor to the special committee of the Rock of Ages board of directors and Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP served as legal advisor to the special committee. Sheehan Phinney Bass + Green PA served as legal counsel to Swenson Granite.” About Rock of AgesRock of Ages (www.RockofAges.com(link is external)) is the largest integrated granite quarrier and manufacturer of finished granite memorials and granite blocks for memorial use in North America. Its 600-foot deep quarry in Graniteville is a popular tourist destination.Forward-Looking StatementsThis press release contains certain forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These statements are based on current expectations about future events. These statements are not guarantees of future events and involve risks, uncertainties and assumptions that are difficult to predict. Therefore, actual events may differ materially from what is expressed in such forward-looking statements due to numerous factors. A statement containing an expectation or prediction as to the consummation of the merger is just an example of a forward-looking statement. Some factors that could realistically cause events to differ materially from those predicted in the forward-looking statements include the occurrence of any event, change or other circumstances that could give rise to the termination of the merger agreement with Swenson Granite Company LLC (’Swenson Granite’); the outcome of any legal proceedings that have been, or may be, instituted against Rock of Ages related to the merger agreement; the inability to complete the merger due to the failure to obtain shareholder approval for the merger or the failure to satisfy other conditions to completion of the merger; and the failure of Swenson Granite to obtain the necessary financing arrangements relating to the merger. Further information and risks regarding factors that could affect our business, operations, financial results or financial positions are discussed from time to time in Rock of Ages’ Securities and Exchange Commission filings and reports. Such forward-looking statements speak only as of the date on which they are made, and Rock of Ages does not undertake any obligation to update any forward-looking statement to reflect events or circumstances after the date of this release, except as may be required under the federal securities laws.About the Proposed TransactionIn connection with the proposed merger, Rock of Ages will file a proxy statement with the Securities and Exchange Commission. INVESTORS AND SECURITY HOLDERS ARE STRONGLY ADVISED TO READ THE PROXY STATEMENT WHEN IT BECOMES AVAILABLE BECAUSE IT WILL CONTAIN IMPORTANT INFORMATION. Investors and security holders may obtain a free copy of the proxy statement (when available) and other documents filed by Rock of Ages from the Securities and Exchange Commission’s Web site athttp://www.sec.gov(link is external). The proxy statement and such other documents may also be obtained for free from Rock of Ages’ website at http://www.rockofages.com(link is external) or by directing such request to Rock of Ages Corporation, Chief Financial Officer, 560 Graniteville Road, Graniteville, Vermont 05654, telephone: (802) 476-3115.Rock of Ages and its directors, executive officers and certain other members of its management and employees may be deemed to be participants in the solicitation of proxies from its shareholders in connection with the proposed merger. Information regarding the interests of Rock of Ages’ participants in the solicitation will be included in the proxy statement relating to the proposed merger when it becomes available. Additional information regarding Rock of Ages’ directors and executive officers is also included in Rock of Ages’ proxy statement for its 2010 Annual Meeting of Stockholders, which was filed with the SEC on July 19, 2010. This document is available free of charge from the SEC’s Web site at www.sec.gov(link is external), from Rock of Ages’ website at http://www.rockofages.com(link is external) or by directing such request to Rock of Ages Corporation, Chief Financial Officer, 560 Graniteville Road, Graniteville, Vermont 05654, telephone: (802) 476-3115. Source: BARRE, Vt.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–10.18.20102 Shareholder Letters (Gottlieb and Kuby)October 19, 2010A letter, dated October 19, 2010 was sent from North Star InvestmentManagement Corporation to Rock of Ages Corporation via Express Delivery:-October 19, 2010The Board of DirectorsAttn: Richard C. Kimball, SecretaryRock of Ages Corp.560 Graniteville RoadGraniteville, VT 05654Dear Sirs & Madam,North Star Investment Management Corporation is in support of the recently announced $ 5.25 a share merger agreement between Rock of Ages Corporation and Swenson Granite Corporation. Noth Star Investment Corporation intends to vote in favor of the merger and tender the shares for which the Firm holds voting authority.Clients of Noth Star Investment Management Corporation affiliates may own shares of Rock of Ages Corporation. North Star Investment Management Corporation does not have dispositive or voting power of these shares. These clients may or may not retain ownership in Rock of Ages Corporation, vote in favor of the proposed transaction or tender their shares.Sincerely,__________________________ __________________________Peter Gottlieb Eric KubySignatureAfter reasonable inquiry and to the best of my knowledge and belief,I certify that the information set forth in this statement is true,complete and correct.Dated: October 19, 2010NORTH STAR INVESTMENT MANAGEMENT CORP.By: /S/ PETER D. GOTTLIEB———————————-PETER D. GOTTLIEB, President & CEOBy: /S/ PETER G. CONTOS II———————————-PETER G. CONTOS IIJune 28, 2010The Board of DirectorsAttn: Richard C. Kimball, SecretaryRock of Ages Corp.560 Graniteville RoadGraniteville, VT 05654Dear Sirs & Madam,At this point we are undecided as to the merits of the May 6, 2010unsolicited proposal by Swenson Granite Company, LLC to purchase alloutstanding shares of Rock of Ages Corporation Common stock for a priceof $4.38 per share in cash. Whereas we recognize that the proposal offersliquidity and premium to the previously depressed stock price, we believethat the true value of the company is substantially higher. We have beenpatient investors in the company for almost nine years and believe thatthe company is finally in a position to generate the levels of profitsthat initially attracted us to their shares. We are encouraged that theSpecial Committee of Independent Rock of Ages Directors has engagedCovington Associates LLC as its financial advisor to assist it in exploringtheir strategic options including the Swenson Granite proposal. We lookforward to the results of the process that will recognize the fullpotential of the company s assets and will reward all shareholders. Pleasefeel free to contact us if you wish to discuss this matter further.Sincerely,__________________________ __________________________Peter Gottlieb Eric Kuby 1,346,326 – *Donald Labonte (8)** 1,023,489 1.1% 5,000 1.5%Charles M. Waite ** 1,135,000 From ROA Proxy statement July 9, 2010 SHARES OF CLASS A COMMON STOCK BENEFICIALLY OWNED *Paul H. Hutchins(9)** 423,986
A Rutland oral surgeon, Peter B Gray, was arraigned on October 18, 2010, in Vermont Superior Court, Criminal Division, Rutland County on 23 felony counts of Medicaid fraud, announced Attorney General William H. Sorrell.According to papers filed in court, Dr. Gray is accused of fraudulently billing Vermont Medicaid for diagnosing patients with non-existent dental cysts, and for services which he did not provide, including anesthesia and the removal of bone-impacted teeth.For each of the 23 Medicaid fraud charges, Dr. Gray faces a potential fine of up to $1,000.00 or an amount equal to twice the amount of payments obtained, or up to ten years in prison, or both. The court imposed standard conditions of release that govern Dr. Gray’s conduct while the case is pending.Source: Vermont Attorney General. 10.20.2010
Attorney General William H Sorrell announced today that Vermont will receive approximately $74,000 as part of a national settlement totaling $600 million based on whistleblower complaints that pharmaceutical manufacturer Allergan, Inc., and Allergan USA, Inc. illegally marketed the drug Botox for uses not approved by the FDA.Specifically, the complaints alleged that Allergan engaged in a nation-wide off-label marketing campaign to get physicians to prescribe Botox for headache, pain, overactive bladder, and spasticity. The marketing campaign included funding continuing medical education programs at which Botox was promoted off-label, and providing physicians with ‘free’ reimbursement services at which they were coached to use improper billing codes.Allergan’s marketing campaign led to overutilization of Botox for medically unnecessary purposes. In addition to civil penalties, Allergan will plead guilty to a misdemeanor violation of the Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act, and pay criminal fines and forfeiture. Allergan will also enter into a Corporate Integrity Agreement with the federal government to closely monitor the company’s future marketing practices. Source: VAG. 1.13.2011