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Berkshire County School Counselor Association


Dr. Josh Mendell –

Vice President

Christine Salvie -


Amy Higgins -

Professional Development

Anne Thidemann French -

MASCA Trustee

Anne Thidemann French -

North County Rep

Beverly Maselli -

North County Rep

Twink Williams Burns -

Central County Rep

Catherine Grady -

Central County Rep

Peter Andersen -

Central County Rep

Christina Wynn -

South County Rep

Dan Korte -

Retiree Board Member

Marietta Rapetti Cawse -


Berkshire County School Counselors Association
On October 30, 1959 at the Berkshire County Teachers Convention Guidance personnel of
Berkshire County were invited to a section meeting at Pittsfield High School by Charles E.
Murphy, Director of Guidance for the City of Pittsfield.
The following people attended:  Walter F. Reagan, John T. Reid, and Mr. Murphy of Pittsfield;
Russell T. Bird, Lee; Maurice Filler, Williamstown; Dorothy F. Glendon, Dalton; Dolores
Toporowski, Adams; and Scott Lowe, Great Barrington.
The purpose of the meeting was to decide whether or not it was desirable to form a guidance
group in the county.  Those present decided that such a group would be of value to all
concerned, and authorized Mr. Murphy to find a suitable meeting place in Pittsfield for the first
meeting to be held on November 9, 1959.
BCSCA - First meeting
An organizational meeting of Berkshire County School Guidance personnel was held in the
Rosa Restaurant in Pittsfield, MA on November 9, 1959.  Charles E. Murphy, Director of
Guidance for the City of Pittsfield was elected chairman and Dolores E. Toporowski, Guidance
Counselor at Adams High School was chosen Secretary.  Twenty-two representatives were
present from Williamstown, North Adams, Adams, Pittsfield, Dalton, Lee, Great Barrington, and
The main purposes of the group will be to exchange information and ideas, and to discuss
common problems.  The committee in charge will consist of Paul R. Rochford, Mount Everett
Regional, Sheffield; Miss Dorothy F. Glendon, Dalton High; Scott Lowe, Searles High, Great
Barrington; and Russell T. Bird, Lee High.  Meetings will be every other month.  
Edited from Berkshire Evening Eagle article and notes, November 10, 1959.
1964-1965 - Charles E. Murphy - Pittsfield was the first member of the Berkshire County
Guidance Association to be elected President of the Massachusetts Guidance Association.
1969-1970 - Donald R. Sommer - Adams was the second member of the Berkshire County
Guidance Association to be elected President of the Massachusetts Guidance Association.
1974-1975 - Edmund J. Plummer, Jr. - Pittsfield was the third member of the Berkshire County
Guidance Association to be elected President of the Massachusetts Guidance Association.

Name change
At the May Appreciation Dinner in 2011 the Berkshire County Guidance Association voted to
change its name to the Berkshire County School Counselors Association.  The purpose of that
change was to ensure that our local professional organization remains current in its mission and
The Berkshire County School Counselors Association (BCSCA) is a group comprised of School
Counselors, School Adjustment Counselors, College Admissions Representatives, and
individuals interested in promoting quality comprehensive guidance services throughout
Berkshire County.  
The BCSCA membership meets formally three times per year in October, March, and May. The
October meeting is a college/university sponsored dinner which includes a business meeting,
professional development component, and the opportunity to network. In March, BCSCA hosts
an annual “Sharing Workshop” which involves a presentation/discussion regarding a guidance
theme of importance to the membership. In May, the Association organizes an appreciation
dinner to recognize retirees and administrative professionals. During this evening, the
association also announces one scholarship recipient from Berkshire Community College
pursuing a degree in counseling/education and a “Friend of School Counselors Award” is
BCSCA collaborates with the Berkshire Superintendent’s Roundtable to serve as a Professional
Learning Network for school counselors. The Roundtable sponsors a fall professional
development day and provides PDP’s for our professional development work.
Each spring, the BCSCA offers a graduate-level school counseling course to provide and
encourage professional development in our profession.

Past BCGA/BCSCA presidents in addition to Charles E. Murphy have included: Edmund
Plummer, William Frazier, Carmelita Scott, Rosie Michel-Cleeve, Pat Gabarcik, Marietta Rapetti
Cawse with Kathy Morgan, and Peter Andersen. Nancy Woitkowski served as treasurer for
many years, followed by Donna Therrien.  Amy Higgins is our current treasurer. Anne French is
our current Professional Development Coordinator and lead teacher for our School Counseling
Graduate Course offered through Fitchburg State University.

Massachusetts School Counselors Association, Inc.  
All Right Reserved.

MASCA deeply values its diverse membership and is fully committed to creating an organization where each individual is welcomed, included, respected and empowered.  No person will be excluded from MASCA on the basis of race, color, religion (creed), gender, gender expression, age, national origin (ancestry), disability, marital status, sexual orientation, political affiliation or military status, or for any other discriminatory reason. These activities include, but are not limited to, appointment of its Governing Board, hiring or firing of staff, selection of volunteers and vendors, and the providing of services.  This policy is fundamental to the effective functioning of MASCA as an organization that supports counselors and promotes equity in our schools, districts and the Commonwealth.

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