Interview with Sara Stephany, Public Affairs at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts

As our fourth outdoor market season was underway, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts reached out with excitement to sponsor and partner with us. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts is a community-focused, not–for–profit health plan with thousands of members in the Berkshires.

Sara Stephany, Senior Manager of Public Affairs, came out for a visit to talk and shop…

DPFM: You are the insurer for the City of Pittsfield. What does that partnership mean to you?
Sara: We’re honored Pittsfield has chosen Blue Cross to provide health care coverage for its employees, and that makes this region really important to us. Beyond supporting the market – and the City has been a big supporter of the market – it’s great to see all the creative local initiatives underway in Pittsfield to help keep the community healthy and active. We really see it as a partnership for healthy living.

DPFM: How did you hear about the Downtown Pittsfield Farmers Market?
Sara: Who didn’t we hear about the market from?! Jess and her team have brought a great energy to the market, and we all get to benefit from this incredible community resource.

DPFM: What did you see in us that made it a natural fit for sponsorship?
Sara: At Blue Cross we are passionate about supporting healthy living. For us that means healthy eating, healthy active lifestyles, and healthy environments. The Downtown Pittsfield Farmers Market brings all these components together, and we couldn’t be more enthusiastic to partner with the team. The market is a central access point for lots of good things – someone could stop by the market to pick up needed fresh produce for dinner, and decide to drop into a yoga class underway. And we especially love that the market continues through the winter months, making it easy to keep incorporating fresh foods into our recipes year-round.

DPFM: You came out to visit our last outdoor market of the season, what Berkshire goodies did you take home with you?
Sara: So much good stuff! A giant stalk of brussel sprouts, a jar of spicy freshly-made pasta sauce, some delicious apples that tasted like apple cider when you bit into them (those didn’t even make it home), and a bit more cheese than I’ll ever admit to.

DPFM: How would you like to see the farmers market grow in the future?
Sara: We love the variety of farmers and producers that make up the market currently, and can’t wait to see what new ones get added in the coming years as the market continues its impressive growth. Maybe a great local bakery or two…

We are so excited to work with Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts to grow and strengthen our market. Help us give them thanks for their sponsorship and commitment to healthy living in our community!