NoteWorthy – 5/13/18

Joseph Girard-Meli on May 13th, 2018

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

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NoteWorthy - 5/13/18

L-r: Joyce Cummings; Jim Wilde, MVHP executive director; Michael Breda, MVHP board president; Bill Cummings.

Merrimack Valley Housing Partnership Awarded Sustaining Grant from Cummings Foundation

The Merrimack Valley Housing Partnership is one of 33 local nonprofits awarded a total of $10 million from Cummings Foundation through its new Sustaining Grants program, which provides funding for up to 10 years.  Executive Director Jim Wilde and President Michael Breda represented the nonprofit at a May 3 awards night at TradeCenter 128 in Woburn.

“We are thrilled with this grant from the Cummings Foundation. It will enable us to educate 600 to 800 families each year for the next decade,” said Wilde. “We are grateful and humbled by this award. Increased homeownership has an enormously positive impact on the overall community as well as on the lives of first time home buyers.”

The Merrimack Valley Housing Partnership had educated and prepared 17,000 families for home ownership through its comprehensive training program. Founded 32 years ago, the mission of the organization is to promote responsible and sustainable home ownership for first-time home buyers of low and moderate income.


Enterprise Bank Names Boys & Girls Club of Greater Lowell “Non-Profit of the Year”

The Boys & Girls Club of Greater Lowell has been honored as the “Non-Profit of the Year” at the 2018 Enterprise Bank Celebration of Excellence Awards.

“With a mission to inspire and enable young people to realize their full potential, the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Lowell is transforming lives and building a brighter future for our community’s youth every day,” said Enterprise Bank CEO Jack Clancy. “We are proud to honor the Boys & Girls Club for their important role in helping young people discover the passion, resolve, and resources they need to redirect their futures and defy the statistics.”

Inaugurated in 2008, Enterprise Bank’s Celebration of Excellence celebrates the remarkable entrepreneurs, businesses, and community leaders who have achieved success as they inspire others to excel. The Non-Profit of the Year Award honors a non-profit organization whose achievements and accomplishments are a result of successfully meeting or exceeding its mission and goals, making a significant and positive impact on the communities it serves. The 2018 award ceremony was held May 1 at the Lowell Memorial Auditorium.


L-r: Tita Antonopoulos, Hillary Rogers, Dougan Sherwood, Melissa Seavey and Beth Morrow.

Greater Haverhill Chamber of Commerce Hires New President and CEO

The Greater Haverhill Chamber of Commerce has announced the hiring of its new president and CEO, Dougan Sherwood. As one of his first duties in his new role, Sherwood shall lead a fresh collaboration between the the Haverhill Chamber and the Greater Haverhill Foundation to market the city, promote local businesses, and gather resources to enhance job creation and economic development.

Sherwood joins the Haverhill community after having spent the past decade as a senior member of Cambridge Innovation Center, the country’s leading organization for creating innovation communities. His work in Kendall Square, and in other cities throughout the United States and abroad, have given him a broad set of experiences and a unique skill set that he believes can be applied just as well in Haverhill as it can in other cities.

“Haverhill has so much to offer and so much going for it,” he said. “Strong manufacturing, a downtown with great structures, a beautiful waterfront, and a wonderful community and quality of life. Add to this smart investment in new developments and the commitment of UMass Lowell, there’s a lot of good stuff going on that we can build from.  I can’t wait to be a part of it all.”


Fallon Health Supports 3 Lowell Nonprofits to Increase Healthy Food Access

Lowell Community Health Center (Lowell CHC), Mill City Grows and the Merrimack Valley Food Bank (MVFB) have been awarded a total of $50,000 to develop and construct a food pantry with related nutrition services for patients, to be housed in the health center. The organizations already work together to increase access to healthy foods for residents of Greater Lowell.

“We are grateful to Fallon Health for recognizing that access to, healthy food is essential to overall health and wellbeing,” said Susan West Levine, CEO of Lowell CHC. “Increasing access for our patients was a logical next step.”

The three organizations are working in collaboration with Fallon and several other key community stakeholders to map out how the pantry will be integrated into the health center’s current models of care while complementing other community resources and to solidify a plan for sustainability, noted Kimberly Salmon, director of Community Relations for Fallon Health. “While we can’t wait to roll up our sleeves and start building the food pantry, we are sensitive to the needs of the community and implementing a program that will be received as a positive resource for all,” Salmon said.



JuanCarlos Rivera was chosen as the National Professional of the Year by the Professional Association of Boys & Girls Clubs of America out of more than 60,000 professionals across the country. He received the award at Boys & Girls Clubs of America’s National Conference in San Diego. He was a significant reason that the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Lowell was named Non-Profit of the Year at Enterprise Bank’s 2018 Celebration of Excellence (see story above). Rivera first came to the club to swim as a child. He started his career as a youth outreach worker at the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Lowell from 1997-2000 and​ ​rejoined the Club in 2013 as Director of Operations. Under his leadership, daily attendance has grown 28 percent and frequency of attendance has grown 68 percent.

Thomas J. Putnam has been named the Concord Museum’s new executive director. Putnam will begin his position on June 4, following Margaret R. Burke’s recent retirement after seven years of leadership. Putnam is currently serving as the Director of Education and Public Programs at the National Archives and Records Administration. In 2017, he served as the Director of Presidential Libraries and managed the nation’s modern presidential library system including the 14 federally-managed libraries from Herbert Hoover to Barack Obama. Prior to this role, Putnam spent over 15 years at the John F. Kennedy Library and Museum, ultimately rising to director, a position in which he served for eight years.



May 14

The 7th Annual Opportunity Works Golf Classic will take place at Renaissance Golf Club starting at 10:30 a.m. Proceeds raised will support Opportunity Works’ mission of “enhancing the life for people with disabilities by promoting a culture of dignity and respect.” Haverhill, Mass. |

May 15

Lowell fire and law enforcement personnel are teaming with the American Red Cross in the city’s first Battle of the Badges blood drive to see who can recruit the most blood donors. The community is encouraged to take part by donating blood on May 15 from 1 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the Lowell Auditorium. Lowell, Mass. |

May 16

Enjoy fabulous food, drinks, a silent auction, music and dancing, all to support Uncommon Threads at their Dress to Impress Gala from 6:30 to 9 p.m. at Salvatore’s Event and Conference Center. Lawrence, Mass. |

May 17

Northern Essex Community College will hold its 4th Annual Networking Night from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the Hartleb Technology Center on the Haverhill campus. Employers are encouraged to use the opportunity to look for potential interns or part-time or full-time employees and/or to help educate and mentor students on what they will need to prepare for a career in their field. Haverhill, Mass. |

May 21

Nevins Family of Services will hold their 11th Annual Golf Tournament starting at 8 a.m. at Haverhill Country Club. Proceeds will support the organization’s mission to provide comprehensive and compassionate care for individuals and families while serving as a resource for the community. Haverhill, Mass. |


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