Michael Dell’s other big local investment

Michael Dell.
Chris Morris for the Boston Globe
Michael Dell.

Now that Dell Inc. is in the midst of a $67 billion deal to buy Hopkinton-based EMC Corp., Michael Dell is polishing up his talking points about the philanthropic money he’s given to Boston-area nonprofits in recent years.

According to a document recently prepared by the Michael & Susan Dell Foundation, it has made nearly $30 million in “investments” in about 20 Boston organizations with educational missions, such as “college success” and “teacher preparation,” over the past eight years.

The biggest beneficiary has been Education Pioneers, an Oakland, Calif.-based nonprofit that does work in Greater Boston; it’s received $6 million. Runner-up is the Boston-based Achievement Network, which has gotten $4.7 million. Other organizations that have received funding exceeding six figures include Let’s Get Ready, Educause, Building Excellent Schools, uAspire, Bottom Line, Better Lesson, and Center for Educational Leadership and Technology.


A spokeswoman for the Dell family foundation, Megan Matthews Carnahan, said the “consolidated list” of funding was compiled so that Michael Dell “would have it as his fingertips as he was beginning to speak to different business leaders in the Boston area about what our partnerships have been in the community in the past.”

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The acquisition of EMC by Dell, headquartered in Round Rock, Texas, is the largest-ever in the technology world, and it’s unclear whether EMC will keep its name once the deal closes.


Channel 5 rolls out new lineup

Are you ready to get your TV news at a faster pace? Bill Fine sure hopes so.

The general manager of WCVB-TV just implemented one of the biggest changes to the NewsCenter 5 schedule that his station has seen in years.


On Monday, WCVB launched a 4:30 p.m. news show, featuring two dozen stories in the first 12 minutes. Fine and Andrew Vrees, WCVB’s news director, says afternoon news shows typically cover nearly half that number. They figured this would be one way to stand out.

Here’s another way: a new 7 p.m. newscast, the only local broadcast news show that airs at that time. Also debuting on Monday, this show is more reflective, in part as a transition to the “Chronicle” news magazine show at 7:30. In addition, Vrees wants to feature investigative projects on the 7 p.m. show.

Ed Harding anchors both new programs, and he is joined by Heather Unruh as co-anchor on the 7 p.m. spot.

That show will feature rotating segments, each tied to a specific journalist: “Made in Mass” with Doug Meehan, will air on Mondays; “Boston Booming” with Phil Lipof, on Wednesdays; and “The Cutting Edge,” a show about local innovation, with Mike Wankum, on Fridays.

Fine and Vrees haven’t hired anyone specifically for this evening expansion, although recent arrivals include Meehan (a Cape Cod native who returned to the area after a stint in Phoenix) and Mike Beaudet (who left Fox 25 last year).


“The other guys are hiring people from Atlanta, San Francisco, Topeka,” Fine says. “We’re hiring people from Cape Cod, Boston, and Arlington. Our group doesn’t have to be told . . . how to pronounce things.”


And speaking of media news . . .

That didn’t take long.

Roughly one year after Joe Shortsleeve seemed to leave his broadcast journalism career behind, the former WBZ-TV reporter is getting back behind the microphone. This time, though, he’s doing radio.

Shortsleeve will join PR strategist Diane McNamara for a 10 a.m.-to-noon show on 1510 WMEX, starting on Feb. 1, replacing the Boston Herald’s “Morning Meeting” show. They’re not the only newcomers to the Quincy station: Nancy “Sandy” Shack, a former producer for Howie Carr’s radio show, just joined WMEX to host the noon-to-3 slot.

Bryan Berner, who owns the station with Henry and Mary Catherine Remmer, says the Herald’s last day was on Friday. In the interim, Michael Savage’s syndicated show will air during that period.

Shortsleeve says he expects he’ll talk about the news of the day, along with bringing in well-known guests. (Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce chief executive Tim Murray, the former lieutenant governor, has already agreed to visit.) He also wants to help callers with problems they may be having with their local government. And he’ll keep his day job at Liberty Square Group, the public affairs shop run by Scott Ferson.

Shortsleeve says his newest venture came together surprisingly quickly. Last month, he mentioned to Michele McPhee, another WMEX host, that he would be interested in filling in on vacation days when the station needs a substitute host.

When the station’s owners heard about Shortsleeve’s interest, that request turned into a daily gig.


Welcome to Miami, Babson

It’s winter, which means that Kerry Healey’s thoughts turn to Florida, and perhaps more surprisingly, to Miami’s thriving tech scene.

“Miami is increasingly the Silicon Valley for Latin America,” the president of Babson College said last week. “There’s a vibe, an energy in Miami right now which is really unmatched.”

With that in mind, Babson plans to launch a program for women entrepreneurs in Miami later this year. The initiative will offer free training, expert guidance, and access to strategic networks of alumni to help women expand their ventures. Named the Women Innovating Now Lab, or WIN Lab, it mirrors the accelerator for women that the college started in Boston two years ago.

The program is funded with an $800,000 grant from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, also based in Miami.

Healey attended the launch of the initiative Thursday at MBAF, an accounting and advisory firm in downtown Miami.

“This is a first-of-its-kind program designed by women entrepreneurs to support women entrepreneurs,” Healey said.

Babson will hire a director for the Miami program in the upcoming weeks.


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