Here in Central Massachusetts good things are happening. The landscape in downtown Worcester is changing as the vision of City Square becomes reality. The rebirth of the Galleria as the Mercantile Center is taking shape and the nearby Canal District continues to expand. Moreover, growth in the healthcare, technology and educational sectors are fueling the local economy. All of this development results in a boost for existing businesses and the creation of new ones.
This year the Worcester Business Journal presents its 2017 issue of local Business Profiles, which shines a spotlight on area companies, their products, services, mission and role in the greater community. In addition to some familiar names – Bay State Savings Bank, Beechwood Hotel, ClearCom IT, Eagle Cleaning, Enterprise Cleaning, Fidelity Bank, United Bank, Webster First Federal Credit Union and Worcester State University – this year's issue offers a look at some newcomers.
For instance, environmental concerns are giving birth to energy-savvy companies that aim to manage and reduce the cost of energy. Clean Energy Collective goes one step further and addresses "community-shared solar," which brings together residential, commercial and industrial customers in a mutually beneficial program.
A couple of the profiles in this issue share a theme: family-owned and health-care focused. Family Pharmacy, launched just before the turn of the century with an emphasis on quality care, continues its tradition of operating on values established by the founder in 1999. Visiting Angels, founded in 2005, also embraces the ethics of its founders. The company has earned a reputation for providing caregivers with professional skills, compassion and understanding of elders, which allows this population to remain in their homes.
Another family-centered business, albeit in the home remodel industry, is Kitchen Associates. Launched on a shoestring budget and originally operating out of a station wagon, this 45-year old company has grown tremendously and has brought the "joy of cooking" to thousands of homeowners.
New to the financial lineup is Southbridge Credit Union, which just hired a new president and CEO, who is "re-inventing" the organization. Through her efforts, a number of new initiatives have been launched, with more to come in the future.
All these companies, regardless of age, size or industry, offer inspiration and stand as examples of hard work, determination and passion. Hats off to them and best wishes for continued success and growth in the coming year.
Project Editor, Business Profiles