NoteWorthy – 5/7/17

Joseph Girard-Meli on May 7th, 2017

NoteWorthy is your weekly news roundup of happenings, movers and shakers, and community events in the Merrimack Valley.

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NECC Student Honored by Governor at the State House

Northern Essex Community College student Klinbert Garcia, of Methuen, was honored by Governor Charlie Baker at the Massachusetts State House in Boston on Friday, May 5, as an outstanding graduate of the class of 2017.

Each spring, the Department of Higher Education honors one graduate—along with a faculty member of his or her choice—from each of the Commonwealth’s public community colleges, colleges, and universities at a very special “29 Who Shine” event.

Born in the Dominican Republic, and raised first in New York and later Lawrence, where he learned and perfected his English by watching cartoons, Klinbert Garcia is a 2014 graduate of Methuen High School and will receive an associate degree in business transfer with high honors from Northern Essex on May 20.

Garcia is transferring to UMass Boston and majoring in Business Management with a concentration in entrepreneurship, and he recently learned that he is receiving the Foster Furcolo Scholarship, honoring the former governor of Massachusetts.

His plan is to create a company which recycles used clothing from the United States for sale in third world countries, employing distributors in the partner countries to resell the clothes. He will start in the Dominican Republic, his home country, and eventually expand to Puerto Rico and South America and India.


Dracut Resident to Address NECC Class of 2017 as Student Speaker

Daniela Chavez-Hernandez, a Northern Essex Community College Early Childhood Education major with a 3.96 grade point average, has been selected as the student speaker for the college’s 55th Annual Commencement Exercises, which will be held on Saturday, May 20 on the Haverhill campus.

Born in Mexico, Chavez-Herandez came to the United States when she was 16 years old, speaking no English. She attended an Arizona high school for two years where she honed her English writing and reading skills. Chavez-Herandez is the mother of a two-year old daughter and she also works full-time as a preschool teacher at the Greater Lawrence Community Action Council’s Child Care Center, which provides services to low-income families.

After graduation, Chavez-Herandez plans to transfer to Salem State University where she will pursue a bachelor’s and master’s in social work. Her goal is to become a social worker and work with underprivileged children, a direction which has been shaped by her work as a preschool teacher.

“I see a need in the community for social workers and I want to continue working with children and families to improve their quality of life through community services and counseling,” she says.


Fallon Health Awards Grants to 5 Lowell Nonprofit Organizations

Fallon Health recently awarded grants to five Lowell area nonprofit organizations that improve health and well-being in the Merrimack Valley community. The awardees were Boys & Girls Club of Lowell, Central Food Ministry Pantry, Lowell Community Health Center, Merrimack Valley Food Bank and Open Pantry of Greater Lowell.

“We are proud to stand with our partners in Greater Lowell to address some of the community’s most pressing needs, including one of the most basic foundations of health – accessing nutritious foods,” said Kimberly Salmon, Director of Community Relations at Fallon Health.


Jeanne D’Arc Employees Receive Diplomas and Certificates In Financial Training

Jeanne D’Arc Credit Union employees recently attended the Center for Financial Training Graduation and Awards Banquet where they were recognized for their accomplishments in their completed courses and programs. At the ceremony, held at the Radisson Hotel and Suites in Chelmsford, employees received either a diploma or certificate marking their completion of an entire program or awarding them for achieving “First in Class” in their courses.

The recipients were also joined by their managers. In total, 13 employees received diplomas and certificates for classes including Introduction to Lending, Selling Fundamentals, Business Math, Business Communication, Financial Services Management, and more. Some employees also received more than one certificate or diploma for their accomplishments in multiple courses.

Cedardale Health & Fitness’ New Andover Location Now Open

Cedardale Health & Fitness’ Andover location opened on May 1. Located in Haverhill for the past 45 years, Cedardale was forced to close its doors on March 1 due to a massive fire. In an effort to keep its’ close-knit, community-based membership together, Cedardale management are now operating in the former Boston Sports Club on 307 Lowell Street in Andover, owned by local developer Lupoli Companies, while its Haverhill club is rebuilt.

“Cedardale Health & Fitness is a valued, longstanding organization in Haverhill, and we are thrilled to be able to provide its employees with a new workplace following this tragedy,” said Sal Lupoli, president and CEO of Lupoli Companies. “Supporting jobs in our local communities is critical to our mission at Lupoli Companies, and we are excited to welcome them at our facility in Andover.”

Site Work Underway at Tuscan Village in Salem

The first steps were taken this week toward transforming the former Rockingham Park racetrack site into the much-anticipated Tuscan Village residential/retail district with the removal of the historic racetrack’s clubhouse.

Construction workers began dismantling the clubhouse yesterday, marking the start of a transformative project that will include more than two million square feet of residential, retail and office space over 170 sprawling acres, making it one of the largest “live, work, play” communities on the East Coast.

An official groundbreaking ceremony on Tuscan Village is expected in June.


Sovanna Pouv, executive director of the Cambodian Mutual Assistance Association of Greater Lowell, has been brought on as the newest board member at Jeanne D’Arc Credit Union. Pouv joins the Credit Union’s board of directors with more than 15 years of experience working for organizations geared towards cultural and social improvement within the local community. Prior to his role at the CMAA, Pouv held several positions at the United Teen Equality Center. A long-time Lowell resident, Pouv was born in the Khao-I-Dang refugee camp in Thailand. He moved to Chicago with his family in 1981, where he lived for seven years before moving to Lowell to be closer to family.



May 11

Budget Buddies will hold a Women Inspiring Women Executive Lunch at NETSCOUT at 11:45 a.m. A panel of notable women will be assembled to discuss the impact of mentors on their success and the ways in which attendees can foster the growth of the next wave of leaders. Westford, Mass. |

May 15

Join the Greater Newburyport Chamber of Commerce for its 28th Annual Golf Tournament, which will be held at Haverhill Country Club from 11 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Haverhill, Mass. |

Community Teamwork will hold its Key Player Awards night from 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the James Houlares Early Learning Center. Former Massachusetts State Senator Steve Panagiotakos will present the awards to individuals and organizations who have given their valuable time to the organization.  Lowell, Mass. |

May 18

The YWCA of Lawrence will hold its 34th anual Tribute to Women Awards Luncheon from noon to 2 p.m. at Andover Country Club. The event honors women living in the Merrimack Valley who have made remarkable contributions to their professions and communities. Andover, Mass. |

May 19 – May 20

Latitude Sports Clubs and Mass General Hospital are joining forces for an 18-hour Spinathon to Fight Cancer from May 19 at 6 p.m. to the next day at noon. Attendees have the opportunity to form a spin team and raise funds for cancer research. Salisbury, Mass. |

May 21

Lowell General Hospital will hold its 18th annual TeamWalk for CancerCare. Funds raised enable the hospital to provide assistance, support, and services to help people feel better, build confidence and instill hope throughout their battle with cancer. Lowell, Mass. |

MSPCA-Angell will hold the Fast & Furriest 5K at 8 a.m. at DCR Baxter Park at Assembly Row. event will include a timed 5K fun run and walk and a “Ducky Dash” kids’ fun run … each including canines, of course! The run and walk will be followed by food, canine contests, and entertainment for the whole family. Somerville, Mass. |

June 2

The 20th Annual JD Golf Classic will be held at Merrimack Golf Club at 7 a.m. This golf tournament supports the JD Fund, which provides scholarships to graduating seniors pursuing careers in the arts. It was set up to honor the memory of JD, Joseph Anthony Daniels, who was killed by a hit-and-run driver in 1997. Methuen, Mass. |

June 4

Merrimack River Feline Rescue Society will host its 22nd annual Strut for Strays Walk & Festival to raise money for cats and kittens in need. The event will take place from noon to 3 p.m., rain or shine, at Spencer-Peirce-Little Farm. Newbury, Mass. |

Know something NoteWorthy we should include? Email Joseph Girard-Meli at with your news tips.


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