Business Buzz


Our Place forms advisory board

BELLOWS FALLS -- Our Place Drop-in Center has formed an advisory board to assist the food pantry and daytime shelter in its mission of connecting people with food and each other.

Members of the board are Alysson’s Orchard; Chroma Technology Corp., represented by Maggie Kelly; Harlow Farm (Paul Harlow); L.A. Burdick Chocolate (Cathy Watson); Leslie’s Tavern at Rockingham (John and Leslie Marston); Silver Forest (Ben Madow); Vermont Academy (Sean Campbell); Westminster Fit Body Boot Camp (Lisa and Mark Dumont); and individuals Attorney Dan Davis, Rockingham Arts and Museum Director Robert McBride, Hugh and Betty Haggerty, and William Therrien.

The advisory board represents a cross-section of individuals and businesses with a history of support and involvement with Our Place and will provide input as needed on issues that face Our Place as it updates its strategic plan and works to meet the food needs of the area.

According John Bohannon, chair of Our Place’s board of directors, the advisory board will continue to grow and diversify, reflecting the depth and breadth of commitment to Our Place in the Greater Falls community.

Information is available by contacting Our Place at 802-463-2217 or, on line at or on Facebook.

Suskawicz receives Moro Fleming Consumer Involvement Award

BOSTON -- Donna Suskawicz, a graduate of Hinsdale (N.H.) High School Class of 1970, received the Moro Fleming Consumer Involvement Award from the Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission. MRC Commissioner Charles Carr presented the award on June 19 in Boston.

Suskawicz was recognized for her outstanding commitment to impact policies and decisions which affect the self-worth, dignity and ability for people with disabilities to direct their lives and fully participate in the home, community and workplace.

She is the creator and director of the Irving K. Zola Center for Persons with Disabilities located in Newton, Mass.

BAAH appoints new officers

BRATTLEBORO -- Brattleboro Area Affordable Housing has elected new officers and a new member to its board. Elected to serve one-year terms are Darah P. Kehnemuyi as president, Pat Burke as vice-president, Peter Cooper as secretary, and Roger Wilken as treasurer. In addition Carolee Blouin of Brattleboro has been elected to a three-year term to serve on the board, joining 14 currently serving members.

Brattleboro Area Affordable Housing is a non-profit operating in Windham County since 1995. Its mission is to improve, increase and preserve housing that is affordable, to assist people facing housing emergencies, and to raise public awareness of housing needs. It has successfully run programs including Save Our Homes, Apartments in Homes, and Mobile Home Improvement.

For more information on Brattleboro Area Affordable Housing, visit

Allstate agency owner earns service designation

BRATTLEBORO -- As a business leader and involved citizen in the Brattleboro area, Allstate exclusive agency owner George Ammirato, of the George Ammirato Jr. Agency, has been designated an Allstate Premier Agency for 2014.

The Allstate Premier Agency designation is bestowed on less than 48 percent of Allstate’s nearly 10,000 agency owners across the country. This designation is being presented to Allstate agent George Ammirato for his outstanding business performance and commitment to putting customers at the center of his agency’s work.

The George Ammirato Jr. Agency also achieved the distinctive Honor Ring award in 2013. The honor is Allstate’s symbol of outstanding business achievement and honorees have proven to be champions in growing their agencies and serving Allstate customers. The George Ammirato Jr. Agency’s dedication to serving customers, consumers and their community has allowed them to achieve this high honor.

The George Ammirato Jr. Agency is located at 1222 Putney Rd., No. 8232, and can be reached at 802-258-4540.

Windham & Windsor Housing Trust names Bridgewater director of homeownership

BRATTLEBORO -- Windham & Windsor Housing Trust recently announced that Elizabeth Bridgewater has been hired as director of homeownership, overseeing staff and all homeownership programs in the Brattleboro and Springfield offices.

Bridgewater brings 19 years of non-profit administrative experience to WWHT, including seven years in housing development, home rehabilitation, and homebuyer education. She comes to Vermont having worked at the Community Development Partnership on Cape Cod for 12 years, first as Director of Economic Development and then as Executive Director. It was there that she gained her experience in housing development, property management, housing rehab and first-time homebuyer education programs. Most recently, Bridgewater has held the position of executive director of the Pioneer Valley Habitat for Humanity affiliate in Northampton.

For more information about WWHT and its programs, please visit or call 802-254-4604 or toll free in Vermont 1-888-294-9948.

Aldridge and Hammond open Katy’s in Putney

PUTNEY -- Katy Aldridge and Brad Hammond, who have been working side-by-side for more than 25 years serving gourmet comfort food, recently announced the opening of Katy’s Great Food at 118 Main Street.

Serving breakfast, lunch and dinner, beer and wine, Katy’s focuses on home-made quality and flavor.

Aldridge and Hammond first met over a slice of apple pie, and since then, both have been cooking together, bringing their talent and expertise to the kitchen.

The pair are known in the community for their deli dishes, bakery, entrees and desserts, with all of their soups, salads, sandwiches, dressings and sauces being made with fresh, house-made ingredients from scratch. Over the years, Hammond has perfected his talents in grilling, roasting and preparing succulent and savory roasts, chops, ribs, burgers, poultry and seafood.

The "new" Katy’s will continue to offer all the favorites that customers have come to know and love, while pursuing the pair’s passion of constantly creating new and exciting dishes with the freshest ingredients available. They have expanded their menu to include traditional and gluten-free bakery items to enjoy both in the restaurant or for take-out.

Having raised two children and living in the Putney area for more than 25 years, Aldridge and Hammond are extremely happy to finally have their own place where they can dish up gourmet comfort food.

The eatery was completely redesigned by Hammond. It is open every day, except Tuesdays, from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. For more information, call 802-536-4196 or visit


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