Meet Our Library Board

Kyle Arnold lives in Newfane with his wife Ewa, a doctor at Grace Cottage Hospital, and son George. Kyle holds a B.S. in mechanical engineering from the University of Vermont and worked for several years designing components of plastic injection molding machines, including a stint training engineers in Shanghai, China. Kyle currently works as a residential real estate appraiser and real estate salesperson. Kyle’s interests include traveling, hiking, skiing, and reading.

Heidi Ballentine moved to Newfane in September of 2012 with her family. She holds a B.S. in Wellness and Alternative Medicine from Johnson State College of Vermont and an M.B.A. in Health Administration from Franklin Pierce University. Her husband, Danny Ballentine, is a Physician Assistant at Grace Cottage Hospital and her son, Cypress, just turned one. Currently she is enjoying motherhood.

Julie Lavorgna was born in Malden, Massachusetts. She received a B.A. in English Literature from Mount Holyoke College and was employed for thirty years at Yale University (Assistant to the Master, Berkeley College; Assistant to the Director, Yale Center for British Art; editor and designer of publications, Yale Center for British Art) In 2000, she and her husband, Gary Lavorgna—a retired groundskeeper and locksmith at Yale—moved to Brookline, Vermont, where their home is off the grid. In addition to her volunteer duties at the Library, she is Secretary-Treasurer of the Brattleboro Branch of the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute and a member of the NewBrook Fire and Rescue Department. She and Gary have two daughters and a son. Her interests are reading, crossword puzzles, jazz, art, gardening, and her iPad.

After entering college and becoming disenchanted with academics Bob McCandless opted to serve time in the military during the Viet Nam crisis. After an honorable discharge he reentered schooling then worked in corporate America at an exciting time when the Internet exploded onto the global scene. He became involved in analytical technology over twenty some years in the business sector but opted to become an entrepreneur by buying a hospitality business and then establishing it as a successful pet friendly venue on Cape Cod for fourteen years. Now retired, Bob is spending his time transforming a multi-building complex into a bed and breakfast in Newfane which his partner will manage. Bob will then segue to his studio on the complex to engage in his passions which include but are not limited to gardening, stained glass making, wood sculpting, painting and any other form of artistic, innovative expression his right-brain thinking explores. Learning from life’s educational experiences, Bob leaves his ego at the door and lives from the heart which has proven to be a much kinder, gentler way to share life’s lessons and a greater, more self evident way to enjoy the enchantment of community, people and the arts.

Bobbe Nemes Ragouzeos resides in Newfane, with her husband, artist Leonard Ragouzeos since 2004. She has a BS in developmental psychology from Hunter College, an MSW in clinical therapy from the University of Iowa and an M.Ed in Educational Administration from Millersville University of PA. She has worked as a therapist with children, adolescents and families, was a college professor and worked in international adoption.  She and Leonard are the parents of two adult children and their spouses, and are the proud grandparents of Avery Elaine with two more to arrive this summer.


Steve Squires has lived in Newfane since 1999, successfully transitioning from a long career in software development to a new life somewhere between retired and homesteading. Visible roles in the community include singing in a church choir and local choral groups, working or speaking as a UVM Extension Master Gardener volunteer, and as a working member at the Brattleboro Food Coop. Steve has served several terms on his church board, holding positions including treasurer and board president. He joined the library board in 2012. Steve is happily married to Kathy Squires, whose volunteer activities eclipse his by a wide margin.

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