CMS Chamber Annual Meeting
CMS Chamber Annual Meeting
Friday, February 9, 2024 (8:00 AM - 9:30 AM) (EST)
CHAMBER OF CENTRAL MASS SOUTH
FEBRUARY 9, 2024 8:00am to 9:30am
GUEST SPEAKER: DR. CHARLES STEINBERG
PRESIDENT OF THE WORCESTER RED SOX
THE PUBLICK HOUSE HISTORIC INN
277 MAIN STREET, STURBRIDGE
You are cordially invited to attend as The Chamber of Central Mass South holds its Annual Meeting on Friday, February 9, 2024, from 8:00am – 9:30am in Paige Hall at The Publick House in Sturbridge.
The Chamber is very pleased to welcome the President of the Worcester Red Sox Dr. Charles Steinberg as our keynote speaker. Dr. Steinberg will speak to some of the challenges the WooSox have experienced due to Covid, share some success stories, and speak to the new ownership of the team.
8:00 Breakfast Buffet Begins
8:15 Welcome from Christina Hadis-Blackwell,
Board Chair, Chamber of Central Mass South
8:30 Highlights from the Past Year,
Alexandra McNitt, Executive Director, Chamber of Central Mass South
8:50 Dr. Charles Steinberg, Worcester Red Sox, President
Breakfast Buffet Menu
House-Made Pecan Sweet Rolls, Muffins & Coffee Cake with Butter
Fresh Fruit, Melon & Berries
Assorted Cold Cereals
Tuscan Vegetable Quiche
Bacon & Sausage Links
Orange & Cranberry Juices
Regular & Decaffeinated Coffee & Assorted Hot Teas
The cost to attend is $35 per person for Chamber Members
($300 for a table of 10) or $40 per person for non-Members.
Please RSVP by phone or email by noon on February 5.
Dr. Charles A. Steinberg
President of the Worcester Red Sox
Dr. Charles Steinberg is the first President of the Worcester Red Sox and was instrumental, together with his mentor Larry Lucchino and ballpark designer Janet Marie Smith, in the creation of Polar Park, located in the heart of the “Heart of the Commonwealth.” The beautiful new ballpark, in Worcester’s resurgent Canal District, opened on May 11, 2021, almost three years to the day that “Dr. Charles” plunged into the study of the city, its culture, and its people.
The rookie year of the WooSox and Polar Park captured Minor League Baseball’s top two awards: one for best community outreach among all 120 teams, and the other for best Hispanic and Latino outreach. In their second and third seasons, the WooSox led all 120 teams in ticket sales with more than a half million. They sold out the majority of their 75 home games.
In 2018, while leading the Pawtucket Red Sox, Lucchino had urged his colleague of 40 plus years to discover for himself what Lucchino was finding in Worcester—a warm and welcoming, passionate and compassionate city hungry to have the Boston Red Sox’ Triple-A affiliate. Steinberg fully immersed, headed 21 “Fan Planning” meetings throughout the city, and meeting tens of thousands of people in the journey to the ballpark’s opening.
And as Lucchino and Steinberg had done in each of their previous ballclub experiences, they plunged headfirst into active community participation. They created the WooSox Foundation, through which they established the WooSox Scholars program, the WooSox Mentors program, the WooSox MVT Awards (to our Most Valuable Teachers), a traveling Care-A-Van to provide job training and to help level the playing field, innovative efforts to help conquer cancer, and programs such as Tyler’s Teammates to help all youngsters have the opportunity to play all varieties of “Diamond Sports.”
As they had done with the Baltimore Orioles, San Diego Padres, and Boston Red Sox, Lucchino and Steinberg spearheaded aggressive marketing to a new, broad region. Meeting with leaders from every town adjacent to Worcester, and to the concentric circles of towns beyond, they organized “Spontaneous Voyages” of mascots and Ambassadors throughout the region and welcomed fans for “Town Takeovers” at Polar Park.
“Dr. Charles” has been President of the Triple-A affiliate since November 5, 2015, navigating the Pawtucket Red Sox through the end of their 50-year run at McCoy Stadium and orchestrating the 45-minute move north before the 2021 season.
Prior to joining the PawSox, Steinberg had spent more than 10 years in two stints as Executive Vice President of the Boston Red Sox, enjoying World Series Championships in 2004, 2007, and 2013. From 2008 through 2011, he was first the Los Angeles Dodgers’ Executive Vice President/Marketing & Public Relations and Chief Marketing Officer and then Senior Advisor to the Commissioner of Baseball for Public Affairs, working directly under Allan H. (Bud) Selig in his Milwaukee office. Before joining the Red Sox in 2002, Steinberg spent seven seasons with the San Diego Padres, where he rose to Executive Vice President of Public Affairs. His career began as a 17-year-old high school intern from Gilman School with his hometown Baltimore Orioles, for whom he would work 19 years, and where he would become statistician to legendary Hall of Fame Manager Earl Weaver, rise to head of public relations, and form a bond with Lucchino, whom he has known since 1980.
An innovator in the fan experience and community connection, Steinberg was instrumental in the creation of the Padres Scholars, Red Sox Scholars, PawSox Scholars, and WooSox Scholars programs, all of which provide substantial college scholarships to middle schoolers.
Starting in 2002, Dr. Charles helped orchestrate the many ceremonies at Fenway Park, ranging from Opening Days to World Series parades, from the retiring of the numbers for Pedro Martinez and David Ortiz to the unveiling of statues for Carl Yastrzemski and “The Teammates.” Perhaps the most important ceremony of his career was April 20, 2013, in which Boston’s largest community convocation gathered at Fenway Park following the Boston Marathon tragedy of April 15. The emotional event concluded with David Ortiz’s unforgettable--and unrepeatable--exhortation. Thereafter, the club continued to embrace the heroes, survivors, and bereaved families, with the remarkable season culminating in a World Series Parade that paused at the Marathon Finish Line for a brief and tender tribute.
The New England Region of the Anti-Defamation League honored Steinberg and the Red Sox with its Distinguished Community Service Award in February, 2014, for helping Boston heal from the wounds of the Marathon tragedy and for the community programs they have created since 2002.
In July of 2014, the Information Display and Entertainment Association (IDEA), comprising all sports venue entertainment officials, enshrined Dr. Charles into their Hall of Fame. He is also a member of the Hall of Fame of the New England Chapter of the Babe Ruth League.
With the Red Sox, Steinberg led the establishment of the Fenway Ambassadors, created the Fenway Park Red Cross Blood Drive each September 11, the annual Jimmy Fund Radiotelethon, as well as community events on Halloween, Veterans Day, Thanksgiving, Christmas, the birthday of Jackie Robinson, and Valentine’s Day.
With the Dodgers, he led the creation of the Dodgers Ambassadors, orchestrated the 2008 Opening Day Ceremonies that paid tribute to the club’s 50th Anniversary in Los Angeles, helped execute the club’s historic trip to China in March, 2008, and produced the ceremonies and events for the best-attended game in professional baseball history--a Guinness World Record of 115,300 fans at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum to benefit cancer research.
Celebrating the L.A. Dodgers’ 50th Anniversary, he created and produced a three-day musical tribute at the Hollywood Bowl before more than 50,000 people. He also wrote the copy immortalized on the Dodgers’ star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and instituted the annual tribute to Jackie Robinson, as he had done in Boston, on the pioneering Hall of Famer’s birthday--the eve of Black History Month.
From April of 2015 until May of 2018, Steinberg split his time between Boston, Pawtucket, and Milwaukee, where he returned to help Commissioner Emeritus Selig with his memoirs, which were published in July of 2019.
With the San Diego Padres, he and Lucchino helped revive a moribund fan base with new approaches to ballpark entertainment and community outreach. He created the Pad Squad, the Swinging Friar mascot, and television shows and documentaries. He oversaw the planting of 116 trees in San Diego, helped establish 20 Little Padres Parks, and helped create the Cindy Matters Fund for pediatric cancer research. He was a key contributor to the city’s successful campaign to build Petco Park, which enabled the Padres to remain in San Diego. He also orchestrated the finale to the Hall of Fame career of Tony Gwynn.
As a senior in high school, Steinberg’s internship was arranged by the Orioles’ Jack Dunn III, grandson and namesake of the man who first signed Babe Ruth. He served as Weaver’s statistician for six years and continued with Joe Altobelli through the World Championship season of 1983. He in 1985 created Orioles Productions and in 1993 created the club’s first customer service department.
Steinberg worked for the Orioles while earning his undergraduate degree from the University of Maryland and his doctorate from Maryland’s dental school, and continued his front office work while becoming the team dentist. In 1982, Steinberg became a founding and charter member of the Academy for Sports Dentistry.
Each of the four MLB franchises for whom he has worked established attendance records during his tenure. He has earned seven championship rings: Five World Championships, including one with Baltimore (1983) and four with Boston (2004, 2007, 2013, 2018), plus two league championships with the ’79 Orioles and ’98 Padres. He has helped produce Postseason Play events and entertainment in 14 seasons.
Steinberg won an Emmy Award for the television production of the 1998 National League Champion Padres, and a Telly Award for the video production of the remarkable “Why Not?” season of the 1989 Baltimore Orioles.
On the field, Steinberg helped orchestrate the finale of Baltimore’s Memorial Stadium in 1991, the opening of Oriole Park at Camden Yards in 1992, and the ceremonies for All-Star Week in 1993. He is responsible for the creation of Rick Dempsey’s video performance of “Old Time Rock and Roll” in Baltimore, the playing of “Hells Bells” heralding Trevor Hoffman’s entrance in San Diego, the daily playing of “Sweet Caroline” in Boston, and the playing of “Don’t Stop Believing” in Los Angeles. He was also instrumental in the development of the Dropkick Murphys’ song, “Tessie,” as well as the playing of “I’m Shipping Up to Boston” at Fenway Park.
Steinberg is Director of Sports Communication at Emerson College, where he has taught since September of 2015. The college is among the first to offer a Sports Communication major.
A musician and songwriter, Steinberg’s compositions have been recorded by Marilyn McCoo & Billy Davis Jr, former Chicago lead singer Bill Champlin, Bob Cowsill (of The Cowsills), the Parkington Sisters, and Ray Charles protégé Ellis Hall, among many others. He wrote the words and music for theme songs for Wally the Green Monster and WooSox mascots “Smiley Ball,” “Woofster the WonderDog,” and “Roberto the Rocket.” He also wrote the words and music to “PawSox Baseball” “WooSox ’21,” “WooSox ’22,” “WooSox ’23,” “Home of the Game,” “Seven Hills,” and more. He served on the board of the San Diego Symphony and accompanied Jimmy Buffett by performing “Take Me Out to the Ballgame” on the Fenway Park organ at Buffett’s concerts in 2004. He was part of a group that sang on the Dropkick Murphys’ song, “Tessie,” and had a cameo with Drew Barrymore in the Farrelly Brothers’ hit film, “Fever Pitch.”
277 Main Street
Sturbridge, MA 01566 United States
Alexandra Executive Director