Balise Community Action

It is our philosophy that by supporting civic events and community services, we help make our communities nicer places in which to live and do business.


Balise Donates and Collects Over 1,000 Toys During 2014 Toys for Tots Campaign

West Springfield, Mass., December 15, 2014 – Balise Motors announced today that they have collected over 1,000 toys for the 2014 Toys for Tots campaign. For the first time, toys were collected through both social media and collection boxes at Balise dealerships throughout the region. The social media campaign ran from December 1st -12th, where for every “Like” they received on Facebook (, Balise purchased a toy for Toys for Tots.

Mike Balise, Vice President of Balise Motor Sales, said, “The support for Toys for Tots from the Western Massachusetts community has been overwhelming, and all of us at Balise would like to thank everyone who took the time to drop off a toy or to ‘Like’ us on Facebook. We were so glad to be able to do our part to ensure that every child wakes up to a gift on Christmas morning.”

Balise Toyota Supports Hannah & Friends

Balise Toyota in Warwick donated $2000 to Hannah & Friends, an amount that was matched by Toyota corporate through the Toyota Pursuit of Potential program for a total donation of $4000. Hannah & Friends is a group dedicated to improving the quality of life for people with developmental disabilities. The group was founded by Charlie and Maura Weis in 2003 and was inspired by their daughter Hannah. As parents of a special needs child, they saw firsthand the financial means required to care for their child and made it their mission to help other families who don’t have the same resources. So they founded Hannah & Friends to honor their daughter, Hannah. Hannah & Friends has served hundreds of children and families in the Rhode Island area. Balise Toyota General Manager Michael O’Connell was overwhelmed by the winning attitude of these kids and their determination.

Visit the Hannah & Friends website

Balise Sponsors Flagpole at Spec Pond in Wilbraham

Balise is a proud sponsor of the Spec Pond Recreational Complex in Wilbraham, Massachusetts, and recently underwrote the purchase and installation of a new flagpole.

From the Spec Pond Recreational Complex website: “The Wilbraham community can take pride in a long history of supporting the recreational facilities at Spec Pond. All improvements are made possible by gifts and labor from local business and community volunteers. With an eye towards the future, in 2006 the Wilbraham Parks & Recreation Department and the Friends of Recreation developed a Master Plan outlining a vision for developing the Spec Pond Recreational Complex to its full potential.”

Balise is happy to be part of that vision!

Balise Supports Junior Achievement

Balise is a Director’s Level Partner with Junior Achievement of Western Massachusetts. Part of Balise’s $5000 sponsorship went to support Junior Achievement’s 7th Annual Stock Investing Competition, held at Springfield Technical Community College on October 25, 2012.

Over 700 middle grade and high school students participated in the 2012 competition. Through participation, students learned about business, math, money management, economics and teamwork.

Mike Balise Visits Kensington School for Link to Libraries Celebrity Read Aloud

Mike Balise had the opportunity to meet some great kids on Wednesday, October 10th, when he visited Kensington School in Springfield to participate in Link to Libraries Celebrity Read Aloud. Mike really enjoyed his time with the children, and Balise is happy to continue its support of Link to Libraries.

Balise Donates Over $12,000 to Robinson Park School in Agawam Thanks to Success of RPS 5K Techno Trot and 2-Mile Family Fun Walk

Never underestimate the power of volunteers, especially when those volunteers are parents and the cause they are raising money for is to help educate their kids!

Robinson Park School in Agawam was looking for help to fund the purchase of Epson BrightLink® technology for the third grade classrooms. They asked Mike Balise for help. Mike gave them a challenge: raise $5,000 and Balise will match it. Parent Carolyn Reed organized the first ever RPS 5K Techno Trot and 2-Mile Family Fun Walk, which was held at the school on May 20, 2012. With her tireless dedication and help from volunteers from the community, the Agawam Techno Trot raised over $12,000! Mike was so impressed he agreed to match the full amount! So now the school can purchase the BrightLink® boards for two full grades instead of one!

The check presentation at the school on June 13, 2012 was attended by school officials, parent volunteers, Agawam Mayor Richard Cohen, Mike Balise and the entire RPS 3rd grade. Several students read thank you cards each had written, followed by a brief Q&A with Mike. Kudos to Carolyn Reed and all those wonderful volunteers!

2012 Doug Flutie Celebrity Shootout for Autism, Presented by Balise, Is a Huge Success!

The Doug Flutie, Jr. Foundation is thrilled to announce that the 2012 Doug Flutie Celebrity Shootout for Autism, held at the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield on Friday, March 16th, raised over $58,000 for the foundation! 19 teams and 43 individual shooters participated and everyone had a great time. Special thanks to celebrity guests Travis Best of the NBA and Springfield’s own Central High School, Kara Wolters of the WNBA and UConn, Myron Pryor of the NFL, Olympic medalist (wrestling) Rodney “The Pitbull” Smith (graduate of Western New England College), Jack “Black Jack” Ryan the Hoop Wizard, Rock 102’s Steve Nagle and Dave Ratner of Dave’s Soda and Pet City.

Check out this write-up from The Reminder

Balise Volkswagen Makes Donation to Bolster Arts Program in School

Balise Volkswagen was a sponsor of the recent Festival Fete Holiday Market in Providence, Rhode Island. Balise invited people to guess how many balloons were stuffed inside a Volkswagen Beetle that was parked at the event. The winner, Michelle McGaughey won tickets to see Shrek the Musical at the Providence Performing Arts Center, as well as a $2000 donation from Balise for the Hopkins Hill Elementary School arts program. Michelle was attending the Holiday Market with her granddaughter, who attends Hopkins Hill.

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Balise Makes Donation to Help Open Pantry of Springfield

Balise made a donation to the 2011 Mayflower Marathon, an annual food drive run by Bax and O’Brien of Rock102 WAQY. According to their website, Rock102 filled three 48-foot trailers and raised over $80,000 worth of food and donations for the Open Pantry in Springfield.

Balise Lexus Hosts Girls Just Wanna Have Fun Fashion Show

The Balise Lexus service drive was transformed into a catwalk on the evening of October 27, 2011, as Balise hosted the 8th Girls Just Wanna Have Fun fashion show. The show was dedicated to Breast Cancer Awareness Month and featured some models who were breast cancer survivors. Balise was happy to be able to host the event.

Balise donates wrapped Toyota Sienna van to Springfield Museums for Museums on the Go!

In an effort to help the Springfield Museums expand its Museums on the Go! program, Balise has donated a new Toyota Sienna minivan and designed a wrap for it highlighting some of the museums’ most iconic exhibits. From left: William F. Peffer Jr., president and chief operating officer of Balise Motor Sales; Holly Smith-Bové, president of the Springfield Museums; Amanda Goodheart-Parks, Springfield Museums’ school programs assistant, Larissa Murray, Springfield Museums’ director of museum education; and Kenneth Maffia, general manager of Balise Toyota Scion.

WEST SPRINGFIELD – Balise Motors announced today that they have leased and wrapped a new Toyota Sienna van and donated it to the Springfield Museums to enable them to expand their Museums on the Go! traveling outreach program.

In addition to providing the vehicle, Balise designed a wrap for the van that captures some of the Museums’ iconic exhibits. William F. Peffer, Jr., president and chief operating officer of Balise Motor Sales, officially turned the keys to the van over to Holly Smith-Bové, president of the Springfield Museums, at a brief ceremony at Balise Toyota Scion in West Springfield.

Peffer said, “Balise was thrilled to have the chance to partner with the Springfield Museums on this unique opportunity to expand their efforts to educate children all throughout the region – no school bus required!

“By donating this van, it’s our hope that kids across Western Massachusetts and beyond who might not be able to visit the Museums in person will now have the chance to have Museum quality exhibits brought to life in their own classrooms. The Museums provide the curriculum and Balise provides the wheels to take the show on the road – what a fantastic partnership!”

Since the Springfield Museums launched Museums on the Go! in 2010, more than 15,000 children from communities across New England have experienced hands-on, interactive art, history and science educational programs ranging from Dr. Seuss to Live Reptiles and everything in between.

About The Springfield Museums
The Springfield Museums are located on the Quadrangle at 21 Edwards Street in downtown Springfield. Hours are Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. and Sunday, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.

By The Republican Business Desk

Balise Lexus and Lexus Champions for Charity Raise $175,000 for Baystate Children’s Hospital

As part of the Lexus Champions for Charity program, Balise Lexus once again partnered with The Children’s Miracle Network Golf Tournament, held on May 19, 2014 at The Ranch Golf Club in Southwick, MA and Crestview Country Club in Agawam, MA. This year the tournament raised $175,000 for Baystate Children’s Hospital.

Since its inception, this tournament has raised over $2.45 million for Baystate Children’s Hospital. Proceeds from this event will help Baystate Children’s Hospital provide the most advanced medical care in a family centered environment that focuses on the needs of kids of all ages. Baystate Children’s Hospital serves the health care needs of children throughout Western Massachusetts.

Visit the BayState Children’s Hospital Facebook page to view photos from the event.

Balise Sponsors Warwick Youth Soccer

Balise has signed on to sponsor 5 Warwick boys and girls soccer teams for 2011, continuing its support of local youth sports programs.

Balise Honored by Springfield Technical Community College

Springfield Technical Community College held their “Not Just Business As Usual” event on April 26th, 2011, at the Log Cabin in Holyoke. Balise was honored for their “continued success and contributions to the local community”. Approximately 500 people attended the event.

From STCC’s website concerning Not Just Business As Usual: “It’s about helping the community, giving back. It’s providing scholarships, technology and a quality education to STCC students. It’s making a strong and lasting contribution to our area’s growth. It’s looking towards the future of Western Massachusetts.

Balise Continues Participation in Mentoring Programs

Balise has participated in a number of mentoring programs with local technical and vocational schools over the years.

Steve Guyette, Service Manager of Balise Toyota in Warwick, Rhode Island, has been mentoring for over 10 years, the last 3 years with Balise. The dealership currently mentors students from The Warwick Area Career and Technical Center and The Metropolitan Regional Career and Technical Center in Providence. The students learn alongside Balise’s experienced tehcnicians and assist in all aspects of the business from routine maintenance to complete frame replacement. The programs are part of the students’ final grades. Steve wanted to recognize Shawn Folger (Shop Foreman) and David Remington (Expert Technician) for their participation in the programs. Steve says they have been instrumental in helping these kids learn our skills.

Brian Kratovil, Manager of Balise Collision Repair in Springfield, is on the advisory board of the Roger L. Putnam Vocational Technical High School auto body program. Brian says both the Springfield and West Springfield Balise Collision Repair locations have taken on students during the school year to help out.

Balise Purchases Scoreboards for Agawam Little League

Balise has purchased 2 electronic scoreboards for Agawam Little League. The first went into use during the Summer of 2008. The second was unveiled on opening day (April 30, 2011) by Mike Balise.

Balise Announces Donation to West Springfield Schools

During the Grand Opening of Balise Lexus on October 27th, 2010, Jeb Balise announced that Balise was making a donation of $10,000 to West Springfield schools to be used to purchase classroom Smart Boards and computers.

Lexus agreed to match Balise’s donation to increase the total to $20,000!

Balise Donates $25,000 to STCC Automotive Technology Department

Balise donated $25,000 for the purchase of a state-of-the-art Hunter vehicle alignment lift. The lift introduces students to real world diagnostic equipment to better prepare them for their careers in automotive technology. Michael J. Oleksak, Executive Vice President of Berkshire Bank and President of the STCC Foundation, said, “This is a great partnership between two valued organizations of the Pioneer Valley.”

Raymond Sbriscia, Chairman of the Automotive Technology Department, said the lift will be an integral part of the education and training the students receive. Sbriscia said, “Our goal is to simulate the settings our students will be ultimately placed in after they complete the program. This new lift gives our students exactly that kind of experience.”

Balise Sponsors West Springfield Skate Park

A significant number of area youths have been enjoying the past few summers at the Balise Scion Skate Park at Cook Playground on Amostown Road in West Springfield. The new park is a reincarnation of the original wooden facility that had deteriorated over time and was taken down in early 2005 due to safety concerns.

Balise underwrote the entire material cost of $60,000 and provided the experienced manpower from Balise Collision Repair Centers, Balise Toyota and Balise Ford to assemble the park components. The entire construction project, with assistance from members of the West Springfield Park & Recreation Department, was completed in a single day. The new skate park was unofficially opened for public use on July 17th, 2006 with the official dedication following on July 25.

Balise Supports Ronald McDonald House

Balise is a long-time sponsor of Ronald McDonald House, including donations to their annual golf tournament as well as their annual gala that raises much needed funds to support the Ronald McDonald House in Springfield, a facility for families to live in while their children are undergoing extensive cancer treatment.

Balise Supports Noble Hospital

Our donation and program ad for Noble Hospital’s annual Noble Ball helped raise funds to purchase radiology equipment and establish a scholarship for students in the Westfield State University nursing program.

Balise Toyota Scion of Warwick Hosts Highly Successful Dog Adoption Event

June 2014 – Balise Toyota Scion of Warwick was proud to play host to the Always Adopt organization’s Super Dog Adoption Day event on Sunday, June 1st. We were amazed at the turnout as 254 rescued dogs and puppies were adopted in the span of only a few hours!

Visit Always Adopt’s Facebook page to view photos and video from the event and learn more about Always Adopt and future adoption events.

Balise Helps Bring Convoy of Hope to Springfield

The Convoy of Hope made a stop at Riverfront Park in Springfield on Saturday, August 17th, 2013, and Balise is happy to have been a part of it. The daylong event was designed to provide help and hope to the underprivileged, unemployed and homeless within our community. Services provided to these families included free medical screenings, haircuts, family portraits, groceries and free sneakers for kids. Over 5000 people in the Springfield area attended! The Pioneer Valley Convoy of Hope was spearheaded by the Wings of Love organization. Balise made a donation of $2500 to help put on the event, and provided the sponsor board and banners that were on location on event day. Balise also had representatives on-hand to meet with interested job seekers and answer questions about current and future job openings at Balise.

Learn more about Convoy of Hope

Balise Toyota of Warwick Makes Another $3000 Donation to Cooley’s Anemia Foundation

Balise Toyota of Warwick and Order of Sons of Italy presented the third Molto Bene Sales Event on February 14-16, 2013. Saturday was a special day, with refreshments provided by area restaurants, entertainment by Reggie Centracchio Quintet with John Badessa and the presentation of a $3,000 donation by Balise to the Cooley’s Anemia Foundation. Thank you for helping us support this worthy cause.

Balise Is Again a Silver Sponsor of Rays of Hope in 2012

For the 7th straight year, Balise is proud to be a Silver Sponsor and participant in the annual Rays of Hope “A Walk Toward the Cure of Breast Cancer”. This year (2012) the walk was held on Sunday, October 28th at Forest Park in Springfield and Energy Park in Greenfield and raised more than $838,000 for the Baystate Health Foundation. Balise and its associates donated and raised more than $11,000 this time around. Balise had its own team of walkers at the Springfield walk, and once again hosted a water station along the route.

Year after year, Balise associates look forward to helping to raise money for this worthwhile cause. To date, Balise and its associates have raised and donated more than $90,000 to Rays of Hope through pledges and various fundraisers including keychain sales, raffles, associate “pink and denim” dress-down days, bake sales and car washes. Visit the Rays of Hope website to learn more about this wonderful charity event.

We hope to see you at the walk next year!

Balise Makes Donation of Over $12,000 to Cape Charities

To celebrate the Grand Opening of the Balise Hyannis Car Wash, Balise pledged to donate $3.00 for each car wash done during a 4-week period this Summer to 1 of 3 local charities: YMCA Cape Cod, Boys & Girls Club of Cape Cod and Children’s Cove Cape & Islands Child Advocacy Center. Each charity had been guaranteed a minimum of a $2,500 donation, but thanks to your support, Hyannis Car Wash performed more than 4000 washes during the 4-week period, raising Balise’s donation to over $4000 per charity! Mike Balise was on hand on Wednesday, October 3rd, to present checks in the amount of $4029 to each charity.

Balise Ford Provides Car to Westfield Vocational High School Automotive Technology Program

May 8, 2012: Balise Ford General Manager Peter Fitzpatrick and Service Manager Al Fontaine made a visit to Westfield Vocational Technical High School. There were 2 reasons for their visit. The first was to speak to students enrolled in the school’s Automotive Technology program about what to expect from a career in that field. The second was to deliver a 2012 Ford Fusion for the students to use in the upcoming Ford/AAA Student Auto Skills competition.

See video

Balise, Toyota Motor Corporation and Lexus Support Roger L. Putnam Vocational Technical High School Automotive Technology Program

From The Republican ( 3/26/2012: “Balise Motor Sales donated $20,000 to the Automotive Trade program at Roger L. Putnam Vocational Technical High School.

In addition to the Balise donation, Lexus and Toyota are each making $10,000 donations to the school. The money is specifically earmarked for the Automotive Technology Program. The funds will help the school design the automotive training lab and purchase state-of-the-art equipment for students to learn and have a real world experience.

Company President Jeb Balise also hired his architect, Dealer Solutions & Design, LLC to review and redesign the automotive training lab. Balise’s commitment goes beyond just dollars as the company will also provide job shadowing, internships and other co-operative educational opportunities.

The Putnam Automotive Technology facility will be more than 8,600 square feet and include the latest, most up-to-date equipment so students can learn in a real life environment and transition to employment.”

Balise Lexus Holds Toys for Tots Drive

Balise Lexus once again held a Toys for Tots drive for 2011. Customers were offered a free oil change in exchange for a donation of a new toy. The drive was a big success and Balise Lexus is thrilled that these toys will be bringing smiles to the faces of local children who may not otherwise have had any presents to open this Holiday season.

Balise Supports Rick’s Place

Balise recently made a donation to Rick’s Place of Wilbraham, MA. Rick’s Place is named in memory of Rick Thorpe, a loved husband, father, brother and son who lost his life in Tower Two of the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. They provide bereavement support to grieving children and their families, offering a place to remember their loved ones and to avoid the sense of isolation that such a loss can produce. At Rick’s Place, all group members share the experience of losing a close family member and can support one another with the help of facilitators.

Balise Subaru Sponsors Providence Cyclo-Cross Festival

The 2011 Providence Cyclo-Cross Festival was held at Roger Williams Park on October 7th-9th. Balise Subaru was happy to help make it happen. The event featured 2 days of UCI international racing, an outdoor trade show and exposition, an outdoor concert sponsored by WBRU and numerous events and featured for kids and families each day.

Balise Lexus and Lexus Pursuit of Potential Donate $5,000 to Scantic Valley YMCA

July 2014 – Balise Lexus and the Lexus Pursuit of Potential donated a total of $5,000 to provide scholarships for kids to attend summer camp at the Scantic Valley YMCA in Wilbraham.

Visit the YMCA of Greater Springfield website to learn more about the Scantic Valley Y Family Center.

Balise Toyota Steers $10,000 Donation to Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Ocean State

Balise Toyota Scion of Warwick and Toyota Motor Sales, USA recently joined forces to donate $10,000 to Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Ocean State as part of the Toyota Pursuit of Potential Program. The contribution funded the Big Brothers Big Sisters Holiday Party, an annual event that all the “bigs and littles” look forward to. The Holiday Party was held December 7, 2013 and provided joy for youngsters in need. Balise also hosted an awareness day at the dealership on October 12th. Big Brothers Big Sisters staff were on hand and discussed the need for volunteers, program specifics and the rewards of making a difference in a young person’s life.

Visit the Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Ocean State website

Balise Sponsoring 7th Annual Wilbraham Peach Sundae Race and Fun Walk

Balise is once again a sponsor of the Wilbraham Peach Sundae Road Race and Fun Walk, which is in its 7th year. The road race starts and ends at Soule Road School on Sunday, August, 21, 2011. The event is organized by the Knights of Columbus Council 10195. All proceeds from the event will be used for college scholarships for local high school seniors.

Balise Presented Doug Flutie’s Rock N’ Hoops on April 15th

Balise was proud to present Doug Flutie’s 2nd Annual Rock N’ Hoops at the Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield, MA on April 15th, 2011. The event raised more than $30,000 to benefit the Doug Flutie Jr. Foundation for Autism and featured free throw contests, an interactive performance by Jack “Black Jack” Ryan and an exhibition by students from Inner Circle Self Defense in Agawam. Participants in the free throw contests, which featured individual shooters as well as an outrageous team round, each paid an entry fee and raised additional funds by acquiring sponsors. Balise was the presenting sponsor for the event with a donation of $7800.

Balise Lexus Hosts Chamber After 5 Event

On Wednesday, April 13th, Balise Lexus hosted an “After 5” event for the Affiliated Chambers of Commerce of Greater Springfield. Approximately 125 people attended and were wowed by the new Balise Lexus showroom and its amenities.

From the Affiliated Chambers’ website: “These events offer business professionals the opportunity to network, build relationships and forge strategic partnerships in a casual setting. After 5 events are held on the second Wednesday of various months from 5-7 p.m. at varying locations throughout the area.

Balise Art Exhibit Raises $10,000 for Autism Speaks

The 2010 Art Exhibit to Benefit Autism Speaks, held at Balise Lexus on November 19th, was a huge success! The event raised more than $10,000 for the charity through ticket sales, auction items and art sales. Crystal Childs, graphic designer for Balise, organized the event which included 37 local artists. Thank you to everyone who attended.

Visit the Balise Facebook page to view photos from the event.

Balise Donates Furniture for STCC Veterans’ Center Lounge

Balise provided leather sofas and other furniture to the newly-opened Student Veterans and Service Members Center at Springfield Technical Community College. The Center, for which a Grand Opening was held October 18th, 2010, will provide many benefits for current and future students who are veterans or service members.

Balise Sponsors YMCA Youth Sports

Balise is a long-time sponsor of local youth sports. One such program is a youth basketball league that runs during the Winter at the Springfield YMCA located at 275 Chestnut Street. According to Steve Clay, former President and CEO of the YMCA of Greater Springfield, “Our youth sports program is an integral part of what we do here at the YMCA of Greater Springfield. As our major youth sports program sponsor, Balise has partnered with us to keep kids off the street while delivering a solid youth sports program that embraces the core values of the YMCA: caring, honesty, respect and responsibility. Together, we are setting the stage for our youth to learn the value of fair play, develop leadership skills and build one’s self image so that they can become active and productive adults in the years to come.”

From Jeb Balise: “What’s important to us at Balise as the sponsor of youth sports programs at the YMCA of Greater Springfield is not in the number of banners displaying our name that hang on the gymnasium wall, or that the Balise name appears on the team T-shirts. Rather, it’s the hundreds of youth that benefit from participating in programs that improve physical abilities, teach team building and leadership skills while being engaged in positive activities. We are pleased to partner with the YMCA to help build strong kids, strong families and strong communities.”

Balise Sponsors West Springfield and Westfield Youth Sports Teams

Balise currently sponsors a total of 10 West Springfield Park and Rec sports teams: 2 basketball teams, 1 Little League baseball team, 2 softball teams, 4 soccer teams and a swim team. We also sponsor 4 Westfield youth soccer teams: 2 girls’ teams and 2 boys’ teams, 9-10 year old division and 11-12 year old division.

Balise Supports Gray House of Springfield

Balise’s donation to Gray House’s annual Spaghetti Supper helps provide much needed funding to the work of the Gray House, which provides food, clothing and household items to those in Springfield who need it most. The supper raises over 10% of their annual budget.

Balise Supports Shriners Hospital

Our donation and program ad for the Shriners Melha Shrine Circus at the Big E helped raise funds for the Shriners Hospital in Springfield.

Balise Sponsors Race for Life

The Whip City BMX Race for Life event was held on Saturday, May 24, 2014, at the Westfield Fairgrounds in Westfield, MA. The event raised $5,800 for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. The Race for Life is an annual event held at every USA BMX sanctioned track in the nation.

Visit the Whip City BMX website to learn more about the Race for Life.

Balise’s Steven M. Mitus Named 2013 Richard J. Moriarty Citizen of the Year

Balise’s own Executive Vice President and CFO Steven M. Mitus has been named by the Affiliated Chambers of Commerce of Greater Springfield as the 2013 Richard J. Moriarty Citizen of the Year. From the ACCGS website:

“The award is given annually to honor the memory of Richard J. Moriarty, a long-time active participant in the ACCGS and individual who gave of his time, talent and personal and professional resources to the local community. ‘Steve reminds me of Rick in so many ways,’ said Patrick Leary, chair of the ACCGS’ award nominating committee and partner at Moriarty & Primack, P.C. ‘Just like Rick, Steve is very involved in so many community organizations not because it is something that is expected of him, but because Steve believes it is the right thing to do,’ said Leary, ‘and, like Rick, much of his involvement is done quietly without seeking accolades or recognition. I think Rick would be very pleased with Steve as our Citizen of the Year.'”

Read full story here

Valley Gives Day Is 12-12-12

Balise Motor Sales is proud to support Valley Gives, a one day charity event in the Pioneer Valley. On December 12, 2012 (12-12-12) donors can go to to make a contribution to a local non-profit. The event is presented by the Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts. The Community Foundation has partnered with eight of the leading funding organizations, including the Davis Foundation, United Ways of Pioneer Valley, Hampshire and Franklin Counties, Jewish Endowment Foundation and the Jewish Federation, the Women’s Fund and the Beveridge Family Foundation.

As a sponsor, Balise donated $5,000 to help kick off the event and provide exciting incentive grants for the winning non-profits. Company President Jeb Balise said he supports this effort 100 percent and encourages other businesses and individuals to do the same. Please join Balise on 12-12-12 in helping to serve our communities and our friends and neighbors in need.

UPDATE (12/14/2012)
Congratulations to Valley Gives on raising over a million dollars!!!

The one day fundraising event generated contributions of nearly $975,000 plus the $200,000 prize pool raised by event organizers at the Community Foundation of Western Mass. Dozens of charities in the Pioneer Valley will benefit from the generosity of local businesses and residents. Balise is proud to have supported this day of giving.

Balise Sponsors “Driving for the Cure” Golf Tournament

Once again Balise was a major sponsor of the Tom Consenzi “Driving for the Cure” Golf Tournament. Named for the late Tom Cosenzi who lost his battle with brain cancer, the September 10, 2012 event at Crestview Country Club in Agawam, Massachusetts raised over $95,000. All proceeds go to brain cancer research facilities in the hopes of one day discovering a cure. Balise donated $10,000 to this effort. In its fourth year, the tournament has made a tremendous difference to those with brain cancer and the families of their victims. Balise is proud to support this effort!

Balise Ford Drive 4 UR Community Event Raises $1560 for Spec Pond in Wilbraham

Balise Ford sponsored Spec Showcase at Spec Pond in Wilbraham on September 30th. As part of Ford’s “Drive 4 UR Community” event, Balise Ford and Ford Motor Company donated $20 for every test drive. At the Spec Pond Showcase, 78 families test drove a Ford, earning $1,560 for the Spec Pond Recreation Area.

Mike Balise presented the check to Park & Rec Director, Bryan Litz. Litz was thrilled with the donation. Balise said that Balise Ford is a proud member of the Wilbraham community and he is pleased to contribute to such a worthwhile cause.

Balise Ford Helps Raise Money for Pathfinder Regional Vocational Technical High School

Balise Ford Helps Raise Money for Pathfinder Regional Vocational Technical High School

April 21, 2012: Balise Ford participated in Ford’s “Drive One 4 UR School” program at Pathfinder Regional Vocational Technical High School to help raise funds for the school.

From Ford’s webiste: The Drive One 4 UR School program was developed as a fun, engaging way to help high schools raise money to support their sports and extracurricular activities. Ford and Lincoln Mercury Dealerships partner with local high schools to conduct test-drive fund raising events. For every valid test-drive completed, Ford Motor Company will donate $20 to the participating high school, up to $6,000!

Balise Sponsoring American International College’s Run for Education

Balise Sponsoring American International College’s Run for Education on June 10th Balise has signed on to sponsor American International College and the K-12 Teacher’s Alliance’s Run for Education, happening on Sunday, June 10, 2012.From AIC’s website: “This 5k race highlights the great importance of our PreK-12 educators in both our children’s lives and in our communities. The Run for Education is an extension of AIC’s long-standing commitments to create future educators and support our regional school systems. In the spirit of both academic and physical fitness, participants will race along the city of Springfield’s storied State Street corridor to AIC’s new track facility. The top three running teams will receive a cash prize, with an additional cash donation made to the school of their choice.”For more information including race sponsorship opportunities or to register for the race, visit

Balise Supports Barnstable High School

The Liverpool Legends will perform at Barnstable High School.Balise made a donation to Barnstable High School’s “Keeping Music Alive” benefit concert, which was held on January 6, 2012 at the high school’s Performing Arts Center. The concert featured performances by the Beatles tribute band “The Liverpool Legends”, along with the school’s music department.

Balise Supports Link to Libraries

Balise recently made a donation to Link to Libraries of Holyoke, MA. Link To Libraries is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization founded in May 2008, whose mission is to collect and distribute new and gently used books to elementary school libraries and non-profit organizations and to enhance the language and literacy skills of children of all cultural backgrounds.

Isenberg Graduate Finds Innovative Way to Give Back

Isenberg graduate, Steve Mitus (’82) found an innovative way to give back to his alma mater, the Isenberg School of Management at UMass Amherst. Thanks to Steve, his employer, Balise Auto Group, is providing Isenberg with a free Honda lease for development travel and other alumni activities. “It was a really good fit: we sell cars and Dean Fuller and the Isenberg development team spends time on the road reaching out to its alumni,” emphasizes Steve, who is Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer with Balise.

Balise Donates $20,000 to United Way and Red Cross to Aid Relief Efforts in Wake of Tornado

Western Massachusetts continues to dig out and clean up from the devastating tornados that ravaged the area on June 1st. To help support these efforts, Balise has donated $10,000 to the Western Mass Chapter of the American Red Cross and $10,000 to the United Way of Pioneer Valley.

The funds to the United Way have been earmarked for clean up and rebuilding in the West Springfield and Springfield areas. Dora Robinson of the United Way explained the agency is now moving from basic health and safety issues to recovery and rebuilding. Over 1000 homeless and displaced families in the area need help transitioning back to permanent housing.

The monies donated to the Red Cross will also help relief efforts in the area. Mike Balise toured the Mustering Area of the local Red Cross and was amazed at the organization and communication. The Mustering Area on Cottage Street in Springfield is like a “command central” where all logistics for volunteers and materials are organized to make the implementation of aid easier and more effective for recipients.

Our thoughts are with our friends and neighbors who suffered losses from this terrible tragedy.

Balise Makes Donation to Boys & Girls Clubs of Rhode Island

Balise recently donated 500 Pawtucket Red Sox tickets to the Rhode Island Boys & Girls Clubs to give kids a chance to see a professional baseball game.

On Wednesday, June 1st at Balise Toyota in Warwick, Mike Balise presented the tickets to Lara D’Antuouno, Executive Director Boys & Girls Club of Warwick and Jim Hoyt, Executive Director Boys & Girls Club of Pawtucket. Jason Rice, a relief pitcher with the PawSox and Paws the team’s mascot were on hand.

Balise is an official sponsor of the PawSox and Balise President Jeb Balise has long been a big supporter of children’s charities and organizations that help kids and their families. “This was a perfect fit for us,” said Balise. “We like to give to organizations that have an immediate impact on the everyday lives of families. The Boys & Girls Clubs are a perfect example of that. We pride ourselves on being a good corporate citizen and a good community neighbor. It’s part of our culture and we’re thrilled to do this.”

Balise Makes Commitment to Baystate’s “Hospital of the Future”

Balise has committed to the Capital Campaign for Baystate Medical Center’s Hospital of the Future. Balise is proud to be associated with this project. More details on Balise’s involvement to come.

From Baystate’s website:

Baystate Medical Center is building a visionary new facility that will meet our community’s needs today, while laying the foundation for future growth. Hundreds of people – from patients to care providers to the community at large – have shared ideas and experiences to design a 641,000 sq. foot facility that will include:

  • a dedicated heart and vascular center
  • new patient care units with spacious private rooms
  • new emergency department, 70,000 square feet in size – 3 1/2 times the size of the current ED
  • shell space for future growth

Balise Donates to Red Cross Disaster Relief

Through the American Red Cross, Balise donated $10,000 for disaster relief following the Japan earthquake and tsunami in March of 2011. Balise made similar donations following the Haiti earthquake in 2010, Hurricane Katrina in 2005 and the Indian Ocean tsunami in 2004.

Balise Honda and Balise Lexus Receive Patriot Award

Balise Honda and Balise Lexus both received the Patriot Award in 2010. The program is “designed to recognize employers who support a strong National Guard and Reserve force. Employers qualify for recognition when they practice leadership and personnel policies that support employee participation in the Guard and Reserve.”

Scott Randall, Balise Honda Service Technician and Private First Class in the Massachusetts National Guard, nominated Balise Honda and Service Manager, Michael Yuscavitch (now at Balise Mazda). Arvin Irizarry, Balise Lexus Service Technician and Sergeant in the Massachusetts National Guard, nominated Balise Lexus, Service Manager, Carmon Carnibucci and Shop Foreman, Paul Sowa.

Earl Bonett, Western Mass. Chairman of the Employer Support Organization, presented the awards. Bonett said, “Employers like Balise give reservists peace of mind that their jobs will be there when they return. It’s so important to the reservist so they can concentrate on their military job and not have to worry about their civilian job.” Bonett explained that every reservist faces these uncertainties and not having to worry about their job back home helps them focus on their mission at hand.

Balise Supports West Springfield Youth Arts Programs through Terriers Around Town

Balise was an “Alpha Dog” sponsor of Terriers Around Town, a yearlong fundraiser to benefit Arts programs for school-aged children in West Springfield. For several months, West Springfield residents had the privilege of having huge fiberglass terriers on display all over town that were designed and decorated by local artists. The culminating event, the “Pick of the Litter” auction, took place on Friday, October 15th, 2010, at Balise Honda.

As an “Alpha Dog”, Balise sponsored a litter of 4 terriers created by local artists which were proudly displayed at Balise stores along Riverdale Street, including one created by Balise’s own Crystal Childs. Balise Collision Repair even gave all 40+ terriers a 2-part urethane clearcoat to help them stand up to the elements.

As part of the “Alpha Dog” sponsorship, Balise was able to keep one of its sponsored terriers. Balise chose to keep Crystal Childs’ creation “Copper” (a police dog) in order to donate him to the West Springfield Police Department.

Mity Mite Hockey

For the 22nd year, Balise is proud to sponsor the Mity Mite hockey program at Springfield Falcons games for the 2012-2013 season. Youth hockey mite teams from throughout Western Massachusetts and Northern Connecticut play a three to four minute game during the first intermission at Falcons home games. The future hockey stars are a perennial favorite of Falcons fans. Hundreds of youth hockey players get to experience the thrill of playing on the Mass Mutual Center ice, courtesy of Balise. Balise is pleased to support local youth sports and proud to continue our partnership with the Springfield Falcons.

Balise Sponsors Numerous Charitable Golf Tournaments

Balise sponsors and supports dozens of local golf tournaments annually that raise money for various charities including the Dunbar Community Center, The Jimmy Fund, The Ronald McDonald House, Shriners Hospital, Wing Memorial Hospital and Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.

Balise Supports Boys & Girls Club

Balise has contributed to the Festival of Trees, a fundraising effort for the Boys and Girls Club of Springfield for the last 5 years.