Our Foundation

The VBR Research and Education Foundation
was created in 2013 as a 501(c)3 non-profit that works to ensure a continuum of high quality educational experiences to prepare children and families to be productive citizens in a global economy (from prenatal through post-secondary and higher education).

VBR Research and Education Foundation currently hosts two related programs:

* Vermont Talent Pipeline Management (VTPM)

*  Nordic Educational Trust Scholarship

Renee Bourget-Place, KPMG LLP, Board Chair
Meg Fleming, SymQuest Group, BoardVice Chair and Treasurer
Billy St.Louis, Northfield Savings Bank, Board Secretary
Kirk Dombrowski, The University of Vermont
Pamela Duchene, Southwestern Vermont Medical Center
John G. Illick, ReArch Company
Scott Farr, River Valley Technical Center
Ian McCray, Middlebury College
Premila Peters, Data Innovations
Judith O’Connell, Champlain Investment Partners (ex-officio)
Seth Bowden, President, Vermont Business Roundtable (ex-officio)
Staff Support: Mary Anne Sheahan, Executive Director of VTPM

To promote educational opportunities to help Vermonters become productive citizens in a local and global economy.

To educate a skilled workforce that meets the hiring needs of the Vermont economy.

The Vermont Talent Pipeline Management Project (VTPM) is an initiative of the Vermont Business Roundtable, a statewide CEO-led public affairs organization. VTPM began operating in 2017 as an employer-led model to fill the skills gap in industry. Leveraging lessons from supply-chain management, VTPM convenes employer collaboratives as the end-customers of the state’s education systems. Our mission is to improve the employability of Vermonters by aligning employer needs with education and workforce programs to grow the state’s economy.

Working in partnership with state and regional workforce entities, the team is inclusive of: the Agency of Commerce and Community Development, including its Regional Development Corporations from Brattleboro, Bennington, Rutland, St. Johnsbury and Burlington; Chambers of Commerce, including Vermont, Central Vermont, and Lake Champlain Region; the Agency of Education and Career & Technical Education Centers; Vermont State and private Colleges; Department of Labor; the State Workforce Development Board; and education funders including the McClure Foundation, Curtis Fund and Vermont Student Assistance Corporation.

Please visit VTPM’s website for to learn more about industry recognized credentials, where to get them, and funding opportunities.



Media Links:

VTPM: Committing Statewide to a Strong Talent Pipeline
U.S. Chamber Foundation Announces TPM Fellows
Aligning Classroom to Career with Talent Pipeline Management

Learn about the U.S. Chamber Foundation’s Talent Pipeline Management Initiative

U.S. Chamber Foundation, USA Funds Announce Second Talent Pipeline Management Academy Cohort (Press Release)

Roundtable Receives Grant from the J. Warren & Lois McClure Foundation to Support Vermont Talent Pipeline Management Project (Press Release, 2.9.17)

Building Alliances and Career Pathways (Brattleboro Reformer, 8.30.17)

Roundtable Hires Executive Director To Support Vermont Talent Pipeline Management Project (Press Release, 12.21.17)
Vermont Talent Pipeline Management (VTPM) Program Launches Manufacturing Industry Collaborative (Press Release, 5.4.18)
Ventriss: Employers Leading the Way to Close the Skills Gap (Vermont Business Magazine exclusive, 6.22.18)



In 1988, the Nordic Educational Trust was founded by Ross and Gail Anderson, former owners of Nordic Ford and Toyota in South Burlington, to support skill development in applied technical fields. Since then, the Trust has served students pursuing fields like automotive technology, computer aided design, and information technology, to name a few. Each year, the Trust grants scholarships to deserving students for one and two-year, post-secondary education programs. These scholarships are not based upon previous academic performance, but are targeted to need and interest in applied learning.

People who knew the Andersons well, spoke of their lifelong commitment to workforce education. According to Ross, “too many young people are missing a world of opportunity by ruling out certain technical types of employment”. Associate degrees, apprenticeships, and short term credentials produce strong employment outcomes. Learning a craft or trade can be a life altering, and result in higher wages, worker productivity, and economic stability.

Vermont’s economic resilience relies upon confronting a looming workforce skills gap. Targeted training investments are among Vermont’s primary economic development strategies. The Vermont Talent Pipeline organizes business leadership around shared workforce needs, to help workers gain valued skills.

The Roundtable took over stewardship and administration of the Trust in 2010, from the Andersons. In the past 10 years, the Nordic Educational Trust Scholarship has awarded $300,0000 to over 45 students. These scholarships reinforce the work of the Vermont Talent Pipeline, by supporting qualified entrants into preferred training for the sectors of construction, healthcare, and manufacturing. For more information about Nordic scholarships, please visit VSAC Scholarships.