Posted by Jerry Branch on Apr 04, 2018

Harry Wolhandler and Pegg Monahan are proposed for Membership in Monadnock Rotary Club


They are experienced Rotarians and were active in the Elm City Club in Keene. We have enjoyed their visits to our weekly meetings and are fortunate that they want to join our club. I have shown their bio's  below:


Harry Wolhandler

It’s hard to capture 70 years of life experience in a brief bio, but here we go:

I’ve mostly retired from 35 years in marketing research and market research (there is a difference). My recent clients are primarily traditional publishers but also well-funded internet startup ventures with a need to better understand their audience. My work has focused on documenting audiences to support ad sales, exploring business opportunities for products and services, studying youth at risk and evaluating substance abuse prevention programs, and new product development in technical fields.

My current business, Accelara Research, is focused on the needs of publishers, but from 1995 through 2001 I served as VP of Research for ActivMedia Research in Peterborough, exploring the emerging business patterns of the internet. Our benchmark reports, “The Real Story Behind ‘Net Profits”, and custom research offered insight to help companies like Yahoo, AT&T, VISA, Intel and many smaller clients take advantage of the new ways of doing business. As the first researchers to study the Web as a business platform, our seminal works helped the first generation of web business navigate the unknown online waters in areas ranging from emerging online technologies to unfolding online business patterns and rapidly evolving consumer shopping patterns.

I’ve always loved studying patterns of social change and how innovative technologies become adopted. Prior to Activmedia, I was VP for Projections, Inc., a small custom research firm in Keene, NH for 15 years. Our wide-ranging practice included clients like Ray Kurzweil, who invented speech synthesis and text recognition and was designing a reading machine for the blind (later purchased and further developed by  Xerox) and wanted to know who would adopt this technology and how to put it in their hands. Other clients included Callard & Bowser, a candy company later purchased by Kraft Foods, Blue Cross-Blue Shield, Byte Magazine, Dartmouth College’s Thayer School of Engineering, Cheshire Medical Center (now Dartmouth-Hitchcock Keene), and non-profit efforts including the launch of the Castle Center for adult day-care, helping the Monadnock Regional School District gather support for their budgets, and studying internet potential for the Town of Peterborough.

Back in the late ‘70s I was marketing director for Contemporary Systems, Inc., promoting adoption of warm-air solar space heating systems and helping develop over 100 solar-heated, super-insulated building projects. Before that, I founded Kathy Manufacturing and designed and produced women’s and children’s fashion accessories in furs and leathers. Way in the deep recesses of the late ‘60s and early ‘70s I began my career first as a hippie leather-crafter, and then as designer of Sheepskin Waterbed-Spreads with bold designs crafted in brightly-colored 2” deep shearling fur. Along the way I’ve gathered a little post-graduate study of organizational behavior and environmental management at Antioch New England, where I also taught marketing for non-profits, and an MBA in global strategy and entrepreneurship from the Whittemore School of Business and Economics at UNH.

I love innovation and change. But my biggest change was marrying Mary Margaret Monahan in 1986. We met at the founding meeting of a regional solid waste initiative comprised of 27 towns banding together to create a regional solution to our common problems. I chaired that first meeting, where Pegg nominated me to chair the district. I then nominated her to be Secretary and a member of the four-person executive committee. So we have a marriage built on solid waste, now almost 32 years ago. We have four children - Justin Howe, 48, who moved in with me when he was 14, Ann Goodrich Bazan, 44, Pegg’s first daughter, Jeanne Monahan Wolhandler, 31, our birth-daughter, and Cassandra Ericson Wolfe, 31, first our foster daughter, later our adopted daughter. Life hasn’t slowed down since.

It’s nice to be back in Rotary. Pegg and I were both members of the Keene Elm City Rotary Club until a few years ago. We both love the social service side of Rotary and look forward to being part of the Monadnock Rotary now that we’re retired.


Pegg Monahan

I am interested in personal growth opportunities, loving to learn and explore.  As a result, I drive myself a little crazy, trying to do it all. Monadnock Rotary is another opportunity for community service and the exploration of new ideas.
My focus has been on raising my family, managing human resources, participating in community service, and managing non-profit organizations:
I arrived at Keene State in 1965 from Lakeport (neighborhood of Laconia, NH) and haven’t left the Monadnock area since, reinventing myself along the way.   I have been married to husband, Harry Wolhandler for 31 years.  He and I have four children and four grandchildren. Justin is 48 married to Leneille with two children Jaxon -15 and Jillian 13. Ann is 45 is married to Kevin with two kids: Connor-8 and Amelia-5, Jeannie is 30 and with her high school sweetheart and Cassandra also 30 is married to Alex. 
We are quite the collection. Harry was raising his friend’s adopted son, Justin, (from age 15) when we were married.  I had a daughter from my first marriage, Ann, who was 12.  We have own child, Jeannie who is now 30 almost 31.  We adopted Jeannie’s friend, Cassandra, when she was 15, she is now 30.      
  • Director of Administration: RHI (administration of non-profit housing and environment consulting) in Winchendon, MA
  • Owner of Institute of Management Skills (a personal effort to start an organization that distributed management education courses)
  • Adjunct Faculty, Management/Human Resources/Labor Relations-Franklin Pierce College, Keene State College
  • Human Resource Manager -Troy Mills
  • Executive Director-Big Brothers Big Sisters of Western NH
  • Executive Director-Keene Senior Center
    Community Service:
  • Keene City Council
  • Harrisville School Board
  • Cyprus Friendship Program
  • Maps Counseling Services
  • Elm City Rotary
    Retirement (since June 2017)
    I am still involved with the Senior Center working on a couple of committees and as treasurer Maps Counseling Services. I participate in a “curious-women” study group, Wednesday Academy, travel with Harry and Sassy (dog), learn new skills, and work on house projects.


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