Membership of the Commission
The Commission is a volunteer board consisting of members of the community who want to assist the Town in achieving and maintaining a sound and sustainable economy. The Commission shall be comprised of no more than seven (7) such persons who shall be appointed by the Board of Selectmen for staggered terms of five (5) years. Efforts shall be made to include a broad representation of the community at large and all appointments shall be made on the basis of the individual’s ability to assist in the purpose of the Commission and their willingness to serve.
Current Members and Terms:
- Michael Aragao (June 2021)
- Beth Bryson (June 2021)
- Diedre Foley (June 2022)
- Michael Johns (June 2021)
- Joanna McFarlane (June 2020)
- Jeff Robison (June 2021)
Michael Johns, Chair (Term ends June 2021)
Mr. Johns has resided in Wrentham since 2015 and has served on the commission since 2016. An Engineering graduate of Norwich University, he later studied Public Administration, earning an MPA from Suffolk University and an MA in Critical & Creative Thinking from UMass Boston. Mr. Johns holds an executive education certificate in Leading Economic Growth from Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government and a certificate in Local Government Leadership and Management, jointly from Suffolk University’s Moakley Center for Public Management and the Massachusetts Municipal Association. He is currently employed by the Town of Foxborough; was previously a general contracting business owner, and served in the U.S. Navy for 12 years as a pilot and budget manager.
Deidre Foley, Vice-Chair (Term Ends June 2022)
Ms. Foley has resided in Wrentham since 2000 and has been on the Commission since 2012. She earned a B.A. in Anthropology from Rutgers University. Ms. Foley previously worked in emerging markets for Bank Boston. Ms. Foley also serves as President of W.E.S.T. (Wrentham Elementary School Trust, Inc.), which is responsible for raising money to fund innovative educational grants created by Wrentham elementary teachers. She has played an integral role on the W.E.S.T. Board since 2008. She also has been heavily involved in local sports, including soccer and baseball.
Beth Bryson, Secretary (Term ends June 2021)
Ms. Bryson moved to Wrentham in 2012 and joined the Commission in 2017. She is a graduate of the University of New Hampshire, with a Bachelor of Science in Business and Bachelor of Arts in Communications. Ms. Bryon has a sales and marketing background coupled with construction development and project management. Ms. Bryson has vast experience in various aspects of real estate, including being a licensed Real Estate Broker in Massachusetts and Rhode Island.
Michael Aragao (Term ends June 2021)
Mr. Aragao moved with his family to Wrentham in 2015 and joined the Economic Development Commission in 2017. Since 2003, Mr. Aragao has served as the President and Chief Investment Advisor of the investment management and taxation firm he founded in neighboring Cumberland, RI. He received a BSBA with concentrations in Finance and Management from Bryant University and later an MBA with a concentration in Finance. Mr. Aragao's charitable work includes sitting on the boards of various social causes as well as being a past president and long-time treasurer of his Rotary Club. He has also volunteered his time to coach Babe Ruth baseball teams.
Joanna McFarlane (Term ends June 2020)
Ms. McFarlane grew up in Wrentham, attending both Wrentham Elementary Schools and King Philip Schools. She has been on the Commission since 2011. Ms. McFarlane majored in Economics and International Relations at Tufts University and earned an MBA in Entrepreneurship from Babson College. She has held Economist roles at companies such as Fidelity, Thomson/Reuters and AIR. She taught economics during grad school and continued to tutor graduate students after completion of her degree. Ms. McFarlane has also started and owned two businesses. Her volunteer commitments include teaching religious education at St. Mary Wrentham and mentoring elementary level Wrentham Destination Imagination teams.
Jeff Robison (Term ends June 2021)
Mr. Robison was born and raised in Wrentham. He has been on the Commission since 2012. Mr. Robison graduated from Providence College, where he played hockey for the Providence Friars. He has served on Wrentham’s Planning Board and has been a member of the Wrentham Host Committee for many years. In addition to being a local business owner (Sunoco and Robison Real Estate), Mr. Robison is a volunteer coach for King Philip Walpole Youth Hockey.