WATERTOWN, N.Y. (WWTI) — The first women to receive grant support from the Maxine M. Quigg Women in Business Fund of the Northern New York Community Foundation include two entrepreneurs and a nonprofit professional.
The Northern New York Community Foundation highlighted the recipients in a press release, detailing how the grant funding will give each of the women opportunities for professional growth.
Lauren Eggleston, Save the River
Lauren Eggleston was awarded funding to enable her participation in the Greater Watertown-North Country Chamber of Commerce Jefferson Leadership Institute. The year-long program is focused on developing professionals in the greater Watertown area.
Eggleston is the assistant director of Save the River, a nonprofit environmental organization. She joined the organization in 2020, focusing on teaching and collaborative research.
“I am very excited for the opportunity to grow as a professional in Northern New York,” Eggleston said. “Thanks to support from the Maxine Quigg Women in Business Fund, I am able to participate in JLI, and can focus on the lessons that this program has to offer.”
Eggleston grew up in the North Country and spent her childhood on the shores of Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence River. Eggleston has a Master of Science in structural geology from the University of Alberta.
Morgan Spencer, MSPEN Consulting
Morgan Spencer was awarded funding to help her complete coaching and training to strengthen her client-relations efforts and sharpen her business management skills. Spencer owns and operates MSPEN Consulting in Watertown, a grant writing, strategic planning and marketing firm she established in 2021.
“Through my work professionally, I aim to make substantial improvements in the community and hope to support, empower, and inspire other women to pursue their dreams at any level,” Spencer said.
Spencer has a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from SUNY Oswego and an associate degree in liberal arts and sciences, general studies and humanities from Jefferson Community College. Spencer is also a graduate of the Jefferson Leadership Institute.
Kate Castle, Hedge Witch Botanicals
Kate Castle was awarded funding to help her complete a certification program through The Herbal Academy. Castle owns and operates Hedge Witch Botanicals in Cape Vincent. The business was founded in 2018 and produces all-natural, handmade organic apothecary goods and cold-process soaps.
“I am grateful for this support from the Maxine Quigg Women in Business Fund. It will help me complete the Business Herbal Course, which will help me navigate the unique and sometimes challenging regulations and requirements that come with starting an herbal business,” Castle said. “This will expand my knowledge and strengthen my ability to more broadly serve my customers and community.”
Castle has a Bachelor of Arts in art history from Ithaca College and spent several years working in nonprofit administration prior to opening her own business.
The Maxine Quigg Women in Business Fund
The Maxine Quigg Women in Business Fund was established in July 2021 by Kimberley Horrill, Maxine Quigg’s sister-in-law, with a goal to increase local mentorship, volunteerism, civic and community engagement and investment.
The mission of the fund is to perpetuate the life and legacy of Quigg by supporting and empowering women entrepreneurs in Jefferson, Lewis and St. Lawrence counties to succeed in their pursuits and realize their full potential.
“It was a proud and an emotional day as we met and greeted the first grantees to receive support from the Maxine Quigg Women in Business Fund through the Northern New York Community Foundation,” Horrill said. “It felt like just the beginning for this legacy that we have started in a community where Max and Terry were so active. To hear the recipients talk about what these grants will enable them to do was humbling. They were honored to be the first grantees.”
Quigg was a successful real estate broker in Jefferson County prior to her death in April 2021. Quigg was a member of the Northern New York Community Foundation’s Board of Directors at the time of her death.
“My Mom embraced new challenges and hard work, treating everyone with respect and dignity throughout her life. These qualities made her a successful businesswoman, and they are echoed in the women we are so proud to support in our first grant awards.” Maxine’s daughter, Kennedy Quigg, said. “She and her business partner, Terry O’Brien, formed the leading real estate brokerage in Northern New York, which created many opportunities for women to succeed.”
Applications for 2023 funding through the Maxine Quigg Women in Business Fund will open this spring. More information about the fund is available on the Community Foundation’s website.