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Feature Stories

Feature Stories

Empowering Women – The Women’s Fund of Essex County
Merrimack Valley Magazine
February 11, 2016
2015 Power of the Purse fundraiser. Photo by Alyse Gause.

Imagine being a single mother of three children. Now imagine having no place to call home.

Working Collaboratively to serve Essex County
North of Boston Business Magazine
June 26, 2015

Essex County is a region of extremes. Located within its 501 square miles are some of the state's poorest cities, as well as some of its wealthiest. It is an area of great need, but also of great opportunity.

Essex County Community Foundation was founded in 1999 to bring these two extremes into balance, to connect able donors who wanted to improve their communities with the hundreds of local nonprofits in need of financial support to make those improvements.

Giving Thanks: A Fifth Century Vision for Essex County
The Salem News
November 22, 2014

The Salem News published Dave Welbourn's column in its opinion section Saturday, Nov. 22, 2014.

Essex County is just beginning a long string of 400th anniversaries. If we could go back that far, we’d see early seasonal fishing villages and natives with a few French words. In the summer months, we’d have seen Captain John Smith sailing past Cape Ann and Nahant, mapping every harbor and island.

Letter to the Editor: A Century of American Giving
November 17, 2014

In honor of the 25th Annual National Community Foundation Week, Jay Caporale, ECCF's Executive Vice President & Director of Philanthropy, wrote the following letter to the editor of several area newspapers.

ECCF Chair to Globe: A Better Way to Invest in Effective Charity
November 13, 2014

The Boston Globe ran a story exploring how financial service corporations in general, and Fidelity in particular, are affecting charitable giving (read article). In response, Jon Payson, ECCF's Board Chair, wrote the following letter to the editor suggesting community foundations provide more meaningful alternatives for philanthropic investments:

Dear Editor,

Column: Good leadership doesn't just happen
The Salem News
March 17, 2014

One of every 408 Americans lives in Essex County, the place where America’s philanthropic life began. Global firsts abound here: from the machine that stitches shoes to the CT scanner that finds tumors. Here the Bill of Rights was first put on paper, the Navy and Coast Guard were founded, and fried clams were invented.

Let There be Light
Eagle Tribune
February 28, 2014

LAWRENCE — A beacon for the Merrimack Valley recently received a bit of a makeover.

The Ayer Mill Clock — the largest mill clock in the world, with a face just a foot smaller than Big Ben’s in London — now boasts new, brighter, energy-efficient lighting to make it visible far and wide.

“It is the face of the city and surrounding countryside,” said Dave Welbourn, president and chief executive officer of Essex County Community Foundation, which oversees the care of the clock. “We figured that now that the clock is working well, we should try to make it more visible to people.”

Rediscovered Treasure
October 14, 2013

SWAMPSCOTT —Â On the highest point of Swampscott Cemetery, amidst the tombstones and the trees, sits a small, 90-year-old stone chapel. For more than 25 years it was locked up, hidden in weeds and forgotten.

Until now.

Deborah Bogardus, a lifelong Swampscott resident, rediscovered Andrews Memorial Chapel while looking for a place to hold a memorial service for her sister 12 years ago.

“It was in pretty bad repair then,” said Bogardus. Read more...

Women’s Fund of Essex County to host annual Grant Awards Luncheon
Wicked Local North of Boston
September 17, 2013

North of Boston —The Women’s Fund of Essex County will host its 11th annual Grant Awards Luncheon on Thursday, Oct. 24, from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Peabody Marriott Hotel, 8 Centennial Drive, Peabody.

Keeper of Ayer Mill tower clock gets time moving again
The Eagle Tribune
August 1, 2013

Heatwave stopped workings of giant timepiece

LAWRENCE — The recent heat wave was enough to halt time. At least that’s what happened when the torrid temperatures stopped the hands on the face of the city’s iconic Ayer Mill clock.

“The heat causes the pendulum to expand by 16th of an inch and changes the speed of the clock,” Charles E. Waites, keeper of the Ayer Mill clock, said yesterday. “The high heat over a couple of weeks, it did have an effect on the clock.”

2013 Margaret Voss Teacher Recognition Award
Marblehead Reporter
June 24, 2013

Marblehead —For making a difference in her students’ lives every day and for having a positive impact on the school in which she teaches, a Bell School third-grade teacher was awarded the 2013 Margaret Voss Howard Teacher Recognition Award recently.

Lindsay Turcotte, a Swampscott native who has taught at Bell for the past nine years, was presented the annual award during a meeting with the entire faculty inside the school’s library just after the school day ended on Wednesday, June 19.

Lynn Public Schools Receives $200,000 in Hardscrabble Grant Funding
Lynn Journal
August 1, 2012

Lynn Public Schools teachers, principals, and professional staff have been awarded 55 Hardscrabble Education Fund Grants worth more than $200,000. The grant money will support teaching initiatives and student achievement in Lynn schools.

Each year, the Hardscrabble Education Fund supports projects benefiting Essex County public-school students in Beverly, Lynn, Marblehead, Nahant, Salem and Swampscott by issuing grants to teachers, schools, or districts.

Receiver: Individual schools to lead way in Lawrence turnaround
Eagle Tribune
August 1, 2012

BOSTON – Lawrence Public School Superintendent/Receiver Jeffrey C. Riley told a ballroom full of educators over breakfast yesterday that he doesn't think that turning around an entire school district has ever been done.

“Power of the Purse” will help bring about change
Wicked Local Danvers
June 3, 2012
Power of the Purse fundraiser

North of Boston —More than 200 women from all over Essex County and as far away as Maine attended the fourth annual “Power of the Purse” fundraising event and purse raffle held in April at Brookwood School, in Manchester.

Proceeds from the event help to fund the Women’s Fund of Essex County special projects and grant awards.  Special thanks to Brookwood School and to the generous merchants, caterers and friends who donated the fabulous purses and bags and delicious hors d’oeuvres!

Lynn Community Health Center honors two
Marblehead Reporter
April 10, 2012
Honorees with guests. Photo by Reba Saldanha.

Marblehead —Jackie Jenkins-Scott, president of Wheelock College, and Paula Shorts, president of the Women’s Fund of Essex County, were honored by the Lynn Community Health Center at its inaugural “Women for LCHC Recognition Breakfast” recently. Over 200 guests were on hand to recognize the honorees for their contributions to the health education, and economic development of women and girls.

Danvers-based group offers training for non-profit leaders
Boston Globe
March 1, 2012
A workshop in session at the IFT.

Over 2,500 non-profit organizations employ almost 45,000 people on the North Shore, providing a valuable part of the economy and much needed resources for residents going through tough times. But leading a non-profit is not always easy.

Trustees need time to focus on their dedication to their organization and renew energy to do their jobs better, according to Julie Bishop, vice president of grants and services for the Essex County Community Foundation (ECCF), a Danvers-based organization that works to educate and develop local non-profits.

“If the board is strengthened, everything an organization does will be stronger,” said Bishop.

State receiver embarks on historic mission to transform Lawrence's failed school system
Eagle Tribune
January 12, 2012

State receiver embarks on historic mission to transform Lawrence's failed school system

LAWRENCE — Lawrence Public Schools made history yesterday when the troubled district became the first to be placed into receivership by the state. But the school system will make even bigger history if the receiver's turnaround plan works, something that may take years.

Dream builders- Women’s Fund of Essex County
Danvers Herald
October 26, 2011

Danvers — With a lofty goal of empowering women and girls in the area, the Women’s Fund of Essex County took another significant step to that end by awarding 12 grants to deserving charities last week at their 9th annual luncheon.

Fundraiser to honor beloved teacher
Salem News
September 24, 2011

HAMILTON — One could easily argue Anita Evetts was born to be a teacher. She had a piano in her second-grade classroom at Cutler Elementary in Hamilton and would play and sing with her students every day.

"She was brilliant at connecting with all children," said Janie Bellenis, a teaching assistant at Cutler and close friend of Evetts. "She was incredibly vibrant and fun. She made learning very fun."

National Teen Leadership Program to hold retreat in Beverly
Boston.com Beverly
June 29, 2011

The National Teen Leadership Program will hold its will hold its first East Coast program from July 15-17 at Endicott College...

Endicott College was selected as the site of its first East Coast retreat because of the presence of the Essex County Community Foundation's Youth at Risk conference, Kim said.

Back by popular demand, forum offers tips on running nonprofits
Boston Globe
March 20, 2011

It might sound like a less-than-exciting way to spend a warm spring Saturday. But this Saturday, about 300 Essex County nonprofit board members will get together in Hamilton to learn about topics like fiduciary responsibility and donor retention.

They say the Essex County Institute for Trustees helps them keep the area’s arts groups, food banks, and other nonprofit organizations running successfully in difficult financial times.

Food pantries face new challenges — and come together
Gloucester Daily Times
February 21, 2011

Hamilton- A food pantry that serves Manchester and Essex families may be losing some storage room and workspace but not its spirit of serving the North Shore community...

Acord is one of dozens of pantries on Cape Ann and the North Shore surviving to support others in spite of economic or real estate setbacks. Collaborating its efforts with various pantries, Acord receives weekly drop-offs of food from the Gloucester-based The Open Door food pantry's truck and other donors.

Summer fun incorporates academics
The Boston Globe
October 28, 2010

Jonathan Paschal, 12, and his brother Jordan, 6, were dropped off each day over the summer at the Children’s Center in Methuen, but that wasn’t always where they stayed.

“They took trips to the beach, to lakes, to Canobie Lake Park,’’ says their mother, Tracey Anderson. “Jordan loves the water. Jonathan was more a fan of Laser Craze.’’

The boys covered a lot of ground during the Children’s Center’s summer program, thanks in part to grants provided by the Greater Lawrence Summer Fund, a collaborative donor effort administered by the Essex County Community Foundation.

Philanthropy and fun
Wicked Local Wenham
October 27, 2010
Eighth Annual Grant Awards Luncheon.

Hamilton —The word philanthropy used to conjure up images of affluent men sharing their wealth with those in need. But in 2010 philanthropy is now a woman’s world. And if the 270 dynamic, community focused women who attended The Women’s Fund of Essex County Eighth Annual Grant Awards Luncheon at the Peabody Marriott on Oct 21 are any indication that philanthropy movement among women is increasing in strength.

Poet Keeps 'em laughing, writing at Salem school
The Salem News
October 12, 2010

...Through a week-long artist-in-residence program at the Witchcraft Heights School, students in all grades worked with children’s author and poet Jeff Nathan, who taught them writing skills through lessons infused with humor and song...Grade five teacher Kathy Marchetti raised $6,000 to pay for the program, securing a $1,000 grant from the Salem Education Foundation, donations from the PTO and a school fundraiser, and a $3,000 matching grant from the Essex County Community Foundation. Read article...

Clock Tower to Chime Again for its Centennial
The Boston Globe
October 3, 2010

In Lawrence, everybody knows what time it is by looking at the Ayer Mill Clock Tower. And today, they’ll prove they care with a centennial celebration for the four-sided, 267-foot-tall landmark.

“We hope it’s a symbol of the continued revitalization of Lawrence,’’ said Jay Caporale, executive vice president of the Essex County Community Foundation.

The clock tower, with its 22-foot clock dials, is one of the tallest in the world, the foundation says. “The fact that it was so enormous was a tremendous sense of pride to all the laborers who worked in these massive textile mills,’’ said Barbara Brown, executive director of the Lawrence History Center.

Ayer Mill Clock Tower, a Lawrence Icon, Turns 100
The Eagle Tribune
September 18, 2010
Ayer Mill Clock Tower with clock keeper, Charlie Waites

LAWRENCE — It was a towering icon of American industry, a ringing symbol of the working class in this city and across the nation for half a century. By the late 1950s it had become something else: a crumbling relic of Lawrence's vanishing glory and a 267-foot-high roost for generations of pigeons that left behind tons of droppings during the four decades they had the run of the place.