Rock-solid partnership forms with granite manufacturer

It seems simple, but it bears repeating: Keeping costs down helps Vermont businesses succeed, and energy is one of those costs. We can help business owners reduce that cost with energy efficiency solutions, and strengthen storied Vermont industries like granite manufacturing in Barre. The granite industry in Barre reaches as far back as the early 1800s, and it expanded in 1875, when the central railroad reached Vermont. As the granite industry grew, so did the city of Barre. Yet the granite industry is not thriving as it once was.

Food bank, Uber launch partnership

BARRE — Vermont Foodbank and Uber Vermont today announced the launch of a giving season partnership to help the Vermont Foodbank raise money and provide meals for children and families throughout the Green Mountain State. Starting today, Uber riders in Vermont can enter the promo code FEEDVT16 when they ride and Uber will donate $1 for every trip to the Vermont Foodbank. Riders can enter the promo code every time they ride between today and Friday. Each year, the Vermont Foodbank distributes over 12 million pounds of food to thousands of children and families. During this season of holiday giving, Uber and the Vermont Foodbank are working together to build awareness and bring our communities together to give back.

Group helps drive new business in Vt.

BARRE — Capstone Community Action’s Micro Business Development program helped 18 people launch new businesses in central Vermont this year. Altogether, those businesses created 34 full-time jobs in Lamoille, Orange and Washington counties and helped provide access to $841,300 in financing through local banks and credit unions. With the program — now in its third decade — Capstone also provided established businesses with marketing and financial guidance about expanding their current product or service lines. About 200 people received technical assistance and other support from Capstone’s program this year. “Micro-business development is an extremely effective and cost-efficient job creator and community economic development engine,” Capstone’s Executive Director Dan H. Hoxworth said in a statement.

Karen Ward

GMUW to launch annual campaign

Green Mountain United Way’s annual campaign kickoff breakfast will be held on Sept. 20 at The Steak House on the Barre-Montpelier Road. The event will include stories from people who have been directly impacted by the work of the local United Way. The group also announced that Karen Ward has agreed to serve as this year’s campaign chair. Ward is a financial advisor with Edward Jones in the Newport area and has volunteered for the United Way on many occasions.

Capstone hires two

BARRE — Capstone Community Action recently hired Christine Johnson as deputy director of mission fulfillment and program excellence. Brian Tagliaferro was hired in May as the director of resource development and grants. Johnson previously served as the director of policy and program integration for the Vermont Agency of Human Services, Office of the Secretary. Prior to that, she worked as a field director for the agency. Tagliaferro came to Capstone from Vermont Public Radio where he was manager of philanthropic giving for nearly four years.

Organic trend boosts HP Hood

BARRE — Along with adding new jobs and expanding the facility, HP Hood’s plant in Barre recently became Organic Valley’s only processor in New England for the national cooperative’s organic milk. Along with this boost in production, HP Hood added 7,000 square feet to its now 31,000-square-foot Barre facility and added 10 jobs as of late March. That gives the company a total of 85 employees working in that building today. Local and national officials with Hood say this latest addition to the Barre operation serves to strengthen the brand, given the ongoing trend toward organic products. The 10 new positions were all connected to the addition of processing the Organic Valley milk at the facility.

Griffin to lead hospice program

BARRE — Central Vermont Home Health & Hospice recently hired Jewelene Griffin to head its Hospice & Palliative Care Program. Griffin, a Georgia native, has almost 20 years of experience working in for-profit hospice management. Over the course of her career, Griffin has served in operations and compliance oversight and in regional and national management roles serving both rural and urban markets. In her most recent position, Griffin served as the vice president of hospice, managing 10 hospice agencies in five states.

Tim Ross

Union Bank hires Timothy Ross

MORRISVILLE — Union Bank recently hired Timothy R. Ross of Barre as vice president-commercial loan officer. Ross has more than 24 years of banking and financial industry experience. For most of that time, he worked at Northfield Savings Bank as chief financial officer and senior commercial and administrative services manager. Ross earned his bachelor’s degree from Norwich University in Northfield. He is based at Union Bank’s Morrisville office.

Program yields big donation

BARRE — Hannaford Supermarkets delivered nearly 390 cases of food to the Vermont Foodbank on June 8 as a result of the annual Hannaford Helps Fight Hunger program, an annual holiday charitable campaign. During the 2015 holiday season, the program invited customers to donate money at the register, buy boxes of food staples for local pantries and purchase specific products that triggered donations by Hannaford to state and regional food banks. Today’s donation will include 109 cases of peanut butter, 100 cases of spaghetti, 59 cases of mini ravioli and 119 cases of oatmeal. Additional information about the program can be found at


Food bank hires Maring

BARRE — The Vermont Foodbank recently hired Jason Maring as chief operations officer. Maring comes to the food bank from City Market/Onion River Co-op in Burlington, where he was the co-op’s director of operations for nearly six years. During his time at City Market, Jason helped the organization meet and exceed organizational goals. Visit to learn more about the food bank.