NoteWorthy – 8/20/17

Joseph Girard-Meli on August 20th, 2017

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

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(Back row, from left) Ricky Hai, Boys & Girls Club staff member, Jazmin Pires, Joe Hungler, Executive Director of the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Lowell, Ariana Malick, Lexie Thibodeau, Linda Onyenwe, Omar Diallo, Ian Muiruri, Wellington Lantigua, Brian Sousa, Senior Vice President and Chief Lending Officer at Jeanne D’Arc Credit Union, Sam Saltani, (front row, from left) Monique Githinji, Portia Yeboah, Jessica Arhuidese, Joshua Araujo and Kiza Msafiri.

Jeanne D’Arc Donates Hundreds of School Supplies to Boys & Girls Club of Greater Lowell

The teens of the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Lowell will begin the new school year with fully stocked backpacks thanks to hundreds of generous donations from Jeanne D’Arc Credit Union’s members and employees.

The Credit Union recently held a company-wide school supply drive to help provide the 65 teens at the Boys & Girls Club with their new school year necessities. Boxes were made available at each of the eight branch locations for members and employees to make donations. Backpacks, notebooks, binders, pencils, pens, highlighters, water bottles and more filled each of the boxes. The Credit Union also donated backpacks to ensure each teen would have one to start the year off right.

Each backpack and all of the school supplies will go directly to the teens. The teens, who range in age from 13 to 18, will join the Boys & Girls Club’s Director of Operations JuanCarlos Rivera to fill each of the backpacks with supplies and help disburse them to their peers.


‘Soles of Haverhill’ Shoe Sculpture Seeks New Home

Apparently, it’s not as easy as an old shoe to find a home for an old shoe.

Team Haverhill and Haverhill Bank are partnering to find a new home for one of the original shoe sculptures created for the Soles of Haverhill project. The shoe, designed by luxury department store Nordstrom, has been on display at the bank’s Lafayette Square branch since 2009. The shoe sculptures salute Haverhill’s celebrated manufacturing history as the “Queen Slipper City.”

Proposals for ownership are currently being accepted from any interested public or private entity now through Sept. 5. A committee, including members from both Team Haverhill and Haverhill Bank, has been assembled to review proposals and select a new owner for the sculpture. Preference will be given to interested parties who plan to display the shoe at a Haverhill location where it can be viewed by the public, either during business hours or full-time. An interior location, such as a lobby or store window, would be best suited for this particular shoe, Mann suggested.

Those interested in adopting the shoe may request an application by emailing


L-r: State Senator Eileen Donoghue, Congresswoman Niki Tsongas & New England Quilt Museum Executive Director Nora Burchfield.

Tsongas and Donoghue Visit New England Quilt Museum

State Senator Eileen Donoghue and Congresswoman Niki Tsongas recently visited the New England Quilt Museum for a viewing of the exhibit “Threads of Resistance.” The national exhibition, organized by the Artist’s Circle, features 64 juried works of fiber art, contemporary quilts and art quilts themed around political activism which express a range of emotions from anger and sadness to hope and empowerment.


Andover native and Uncommon Threads Founder Susan Kanoff.

Uncommon Threads Earns Recognition & Funding “Triple Play”

By popular vote, Uncommon Threads, a Lawrence nonprofit that provides women in need with confidence-boosting wardrobe updates, received $1,500 from Lowell’s Jeanne D’Arc Credit Union. Additionally, Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Foundation recognized Uncommon Threads with its own Community Spirit 9/11 Mini-Grant. And just to load the bases, Andover Business Community Association (ABCA) selected Uncommon Threads as its 2017 Honoree for Andover Day.

The organization’s mission is to use clothes and image as the tools for boosting women’s self-esteem, self-confidence and self-worth. Clients are low-income women who are social worker referred, including domestic violence survivors, female veterans, cancer patients and disabled women. Uncommon Threads provides women a private wardrobe styling session as a first empowering step.



Samantha Petrou, of Haverhill, has been promoted to the position of assistant vice president, small business relationship manager at Pentucket Bank. Petrou joined Pentucket Bank and the commercial credit department in April of 2014 as AVP/commercial credit analyst.  Over that time, she has become a vital member of the Pentucket team bringing years of professional banking experience to the position. In her new role, Petrou will assume the responsibility of directly managing small business lending relationships up to $500,000. She and her family are also local business owners where she oversees much of the business’ operations. She graduated from University of Massachusetts Lowell with a Bachelor of Arts and from Regis University with a Master of Business Administration.

Kelley Contarino, of Haverhill, has joined Salem Co-operative Bank in the position of retail branch manager, assistant vice president for the bank’s Methuen office. Contarino brings with her more than 9 years of experience as a branch manager. In her new role, she will oversee the daily operations of the branch, as well as provide coaching and training to her staff. Contarino is very active in the local community. She is currently serving as president and board member of Haverhill’s Kiwanis Club, and is on the executive committee and board for the Greater Haverhill Chamber, where she also serves on the member services committee.



August 21

Lowell General Hospital will host its annual Golf Challenge at the International Golf Course. Proceeds from the event will be invested in the expansion of the hospital’s intensive care unit on the main campus. Bolton, Mass. |

August 22

Habitat for Humanity of Greater Lowell will hold a Women & Philanthropy Multi-Generational Legacy Tea at Concord’s Colonial Inn from 2:30 to 4 p.m.  This event raises crucial funds to build or rehabilitate houses for lower income families living in substandard housing and critical home repairs targeted at safety, energy efficiency and disabled access for lower income senior citizens, disabled and veterans throughout the Greater Lowell community.   Tickets are $35 per person, or 2 for $60. Concord, Mass. |

August 25 – 27

Middlesex County 4-H Fair will be held at the Westford Fairgrounds. All exhibitors are members of 4-H Clubs in Middlesex County. In addition to horse shows and horticultural displays, activities will include hayrides, face painting and plenty of delicious fair food. Westford, Mass. |

September 9

The public is invited to join Lowell Community Health Center for a Community Celebration filled with music, raffles and general merriment from 6:30 to 11 p.m. at Sompao Meas. Proceeds will support vital patient services and the organization’s Building Bridges Campaign to renovate their Jackson Street location. Lowell, Mass. |

September 11

The 12th Annual Fore Melmark New England Golf Tournament will be held at the Andover Country Club. Funds raised will support the organization’s mission of serving children, adults and their families affected by a broad range of intellectual disabilities. Andover, Mass. |

Merrimack Valley Food Bank will hold its 24th annual Golf Tournament and Awards Dinner at Indian Ridge Country Club. Registration includes 18 holes of golf, carts, lunch and dinner, snacks on the course and a gift. Andover, Mass. |

September 14

United Way of Massachusetts Bay and the Merrimack Valley will hold their 4th Annual Youth Venture Launch Party, a night of drinks, door prizes, networking and high-impact volunteer opportunities that support the area’s youngest entrepreneurs tackling the toughest issues in their local communities. Boston, Mass. |

September 16

Groundwork Lawrence will hold their 15th annual Spicket River Cleanup. The organization welcomes volunteers of all ages, as well as any businesses, churches, schools and community organizations who would like to volunteer as groups. Lawrence, Mass. |

Mill City Grows will hold their 6th Annual Harvest Festival from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at North Common Park & Community Garden. The event includes live music and entertainment, food trucks and local food vendors, homemade harvest soup, garden tours and much, much more. Lowell, Mass. |


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


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