5 local women-owned businesses receive $5,000 development grants | Community


Women in business awarded grants

ROME, N.Y. — Five women-owned businesses in Herkimer and Oneida counties were each awarded $5,000 grants on Wednesday to support growth and development.

A total of $25,000 was awarded in celebration of the 25th anniversary of the Women’s Fund of Herkimer and Oneida Counties, which sponsors the grant program in conjunction with Baird Private Wealth Management and the Griffiss Institute.

The Women’s Fund was created by women in support of women to encourage their advancement and participation in their communities. 

“We are thrilled to be awarding these grants to enterprising women in our communities. We launched this initiative in late August hoping for more than a dozen applicants. We received 58 applications,” said Diane Wolfe, president of the Board of Directors of The Women’s Fund.

Those who applied for the grants needed a few requirements including, being at least 51% women-owned, located in Herkimer or Oneida Counties and in business for at least one year. 

“Our grant initiative, Women Investing in Women, was developed to support women in our community. The incredible number of applicants demonstrates how many women are working to make a difference in our area. It both energized and inspired our judges as they worked to identify the five recipients. It was difficult narrowing the field to just five. We hope to continue to provide this opportunity in the future as there is truly a need out there,” said Ellen Rainey, Women’s Fund board member and chairperson of the program.

The award winners included: 

TRM Environmental Consultants, Rome – Catherine Dare: TRM’s team of engineers provides clear and concise summaries of field conditions associated with horizontal construction activities and ensures that a quality product is the result of the scope of work. 

Hilltop Marketing, Frankfort- Leigh Ann Dillon: Founded with the goal to help small businesses and nonprofit organizations tell their story with a modern website. Hilltop specializes in WordPress web design, small business marketing and digital communications.

The Cremeria, Clinton – Maria Macrina: An authentic Italian gelato shop located in downtown Clinton. They also provide event catering for public and private events including Farmer’s Markets, weddings and graduations. The Cremeria is rooted with a respect for Italian traditions and a desire to relate back to a time when local community and commerce was at the center of daily life.

The Cremeria in Clinton

New Beginnings Academy, Herkimer – Janel Hearn: (Formerly Little Hearn Playskool) Childcare facility in Herkimer County that offers daycare services for infants to children five years of age. The program works to fill the void of childcare disparities throughout the rural region and plans to expand to include afterschool care for children up to 12 years of age.

A-List Salon and Beauty Bar, Utica – Alisha Gaines-Porter: A Black-owned hair salon that provides haircare services to individuals unable to find a stylist, who is very familiar with ethnic hair. The salon also provides booth rental to other stylists in the area.

A-list beauty

The award ceremony was held at The Griffiss Institute in Rome. 

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