Quick Takes

NAMED MEMBER: John W. Cucarese has been named a member of the 2017 Chairman’s Council of New York Life.

Members of the Chairman’s Council rank in the top 3 percent of New York Life’s sales force of more than 12,000 licensed agents in sales achievement, according to officials.

Cucarese has been a New York Life agent since 2005 and is associated with New York Life’s Pittsburgh general office, with his main office location in Steubenville and another office in Zanesville.

Cucarese is a member of the Million Dollar Round Table, as well as the National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors and the Estate Planning Council of the Upper Ohio Valley. He is a graduate of Wintersville High School and Ohio State University.

Licensed in Ohio, West Virginia and Pennsylvania, Cucarese provides retirement planning, investment and insurance services throughout the community. For information, visit the website at www.SimplifyRetirement.com or call (740) 264-0238.

HONORED AGAIN: The Phil-Mor Tuxedo Shop, located at 339 Main St., Wintersville, has been designated for the 10th consecutive year as a Silver Elite Dealer by Jim’s Formal Wear.

The award is based on sales volume, presentation, performance at the retail level and community involvement.

Jim’s is one of the largest wholesale tuxedo companies in the United States, with 5,000 retailers across the country. That number of retail locations allows for large wedding parties to be accommodated at various locations.

Jim’s Formal Wear and the Phil-Mor are able to offer an extensive inventory of the latest styles and fits.

RAISE FUNDS: Modern Woodmen of America in Steubenville helped raise money for the Warren Township Lions Club during an event held Nov. 9.

The event, which included a drawing, raised $1,000, which included the $500 match from Modern Woodmen through its matching fund program.

The Modern Woodmen fundraising projects contribute more than $10 million to community needs across the country each year, officials said.

“The community truly came together to support a local need,” said Tim Conrad, local Modern Woodmen volunteer leader. “That support is what it’s all about.”

RATES RISE: Long-term mortgage rates rose this week to the highest level in months.

Mortgage giant Freddie Mac says the rate on benchmark 30-year, fixed-rate mortgages hit 3.95 percent, up from 3.90 percent last week and highest since July. A year ago, it stood at 3.94 percent. The rate on 15-year home loans, popular among those who refinance mortgages, climbed to an average 3.31 percent, highest since April and up from 3.24 percent last week and 3.14 percent a year ago.

PARTNERS: The Walt Disney Co., NBC, Universal Music Group and others are helping the University of Southern California lead an expanded effort to drive diversity in the entertainment industry.

The university’s Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism announced Thursday that is broadening the mission of its Media, Diversity and Social Change Initiative to include the music world as well as television and movies and renaming the project the Annenberg Inclusion Initiative.

In addition to Disney, NBC and Universal, Sony Pictures Entertainment, HBO and talent agency WME are joining the effort.

The initiative releases an annual study on various issues surrounding diversity. Last year, it ranked media companies on their inclusion records.

From staff and wire reports

Copyright 2017 The Associated Press.