GLOUCESTER’S HOUSING: FROM CRISIS TO OPPORTUNITY – a community symposium November 16th from 2–5:00 p.m. in the historic 1806 Meetinghouse

The Gloucester Meetinghouse Foundation hosts this civic event to explore the topic of housing, its relevance to the City of Gloucester and Cape Ann, and the challenges and opportunities it presents for the future. Through a program of speakers, panels, and audience interaction, presenters will address the question of how Gloucester’s lack of reasonably-priced housing is holding the city back. Discussions will explore how creative, green, and maritime economies might offer solutions.


SEGMENT I  2:00 – 2:50

GREETING: Charles Nazarian, President, Gloucester Meetinghouse Foundation

OVERVIEW: Sandy Ronan, VP/Events, Gloucester Meetinghouse Foundation

PANEL DISCUSSION, Sandy Ronan-Moderator:

Subject: “How is the lack of housing holding Gloucester back?”

Shawn Henry -Gloucester Planning Board

Robert J.Gillis, Jr. – President, Cape Ann Savings Bank

Ken Riehl – CEO, Cape Ann Chamber of Commerce

David Houlden – Gloucester Housing Authority


Peggy Hegarty-Steck – President and Executive Director, Action, Inc.

Subject: Cameron’s project – zoning/funding challenges

BREAK: 10 minutes

SEGMENT II  3:00 – 3:50

RESIDENT STORIES, Kathleen Williams-Moderator:

Clare Higgins – SeARTS

RuthPino – Realtor

David Calvo –Woodcarver/sculptor

Angela Sanfilippo– Executive Director, Gloucester Fisherman’s Wives Association

Rob Newton -Cape Ann Community Cinema Stage

Katie O’Leary – Wellspring, Homeless Prevention Case Manager 


Andrew DeFranza -Harborlight Community Partners

BREAK: 10 minutes

SEGMENT III  4:00-5:00


Carl Gustin -Economic Development and Industrial Corporation

Tom Balf – Founder and Principal, OceanVest, Merging the Maritime, Green, and Creative Economies

PANEL, (addressing written questions from the audience) Jeremy Melvin-Moderator:

Jen Holmgren – City Councilor

David Houlden –Gloucester Housing Authority

Andrew DeFranza – Harborlight Community Partners

Robert J. Gillis – President, Cape Ann Savings Bank

Kirk Noyes – Gloucester Development Team


SUMMATION: Mayor Sefatia Romeo-Theken

The three-hour program is free and open to the public. People are encouraged to attend as much of the program as they like. Ten-minute breaks with refreshments between segments will allow audience members to interact with presenters and engage in informal conversations with each other.

The Gloucester Meetinghouse, home of the Unitarian Universalist Church, is located at the corner of Church and Middle Streets. The accessible side entrance is at 10 Church Street. Event parking is available on the green and at additional parking lots nearby in the Historic District. For more information on this program and for the full 2019-20 event schedule, please visit

City Officials & Partners Unveil Gloucester Green Thursday 12 Noon at City Hall


 Mayoral Initiative Helps Highlight Ways to Save Energy and Save Money, Including No-Cost Mass Save Home Energy Assessments

(Gloucester, Mass.) April 26, 2017 – The Mayor is pleased to announce the launch of Gloucester Green, a new initiative aimed to help residents save money, save energy, and reduce the community’s carbon footprint.  Gloucester Green includes a partnership with National Grid to encourage residents to sign up for a no-cost Home Energy Assessment through Mass Save.  Signing up is the first step for residents to qualify for rebates and incentives that will make their homes more comfortable while saving energy and money.

“I’m thrilled to launch Gloucester Green but I’m even more excited for Gloucester’s future,” said Mayor Sefatia Romeo Theken. “I’m very proud of our team who all worked together to help launch this important initiative. We’ve achieved so much as a City, including wind turbines, electric vehicles and charging stations, LED street lights, all helping our residents save energy and save money which we can all support. Gloucester Green is another great milestone in our eco-friendly success story!”

Gloucester Green is a consortium of community and City partners, including the Mayor’s Office, the Community Development Department, the Clean Energy Commission and the local non-profit TownGreen 2025.  All have joined together to better promote opportunities for Gloucester citizens to become greener and save money, including encouraging residents to sign up for the Mass Save Home Energy Assessment.

During the Mass Save Home Energy Assessment, an energy specialist will do a complete checkup of the home and not only recommend ways that residents can use less energy, but install some measures on the spot at no cost that will immediately help them start saving.  In addition, the energy specialist will review with the homeowner additional measures that can be funded with rebates and incentives offered by Mass Save.


Mayor Sefatia Romeo Theken finishes her no-cost home energy assessment and is smiling large


Earlier this week, Mayor Sefatia Romeo Theken completed her own Home Energy Assessment.  “The energy specialist who performed my assessment was very knowledgeable and professional,” said the Mayor.  “I learned a lot about the ways to save money and improve my home, and I encourage every resident of Gloucester to follow my lead and sign up for your no-cost assessment.”

Gloucester Green includes a partnership with National Grid, and together they have set a goal to complete 1,400 assessments in 2017.  National Grid has provided the Gloucester Green team funding to aid in public outreach and has pledged an additional grant reward of $41,000 if Gloucester reaches its goal.  “We’re excited to work with National Grid to bring Glouresidents’beneficial services that not only will help us reach our energy savings goals, but could help us earn additional funding,” says Chris Sicuranza, Director of Communications.

Gloucester Green will officially be unveiled this Thursday at noon at City Hall with Mayor Sefatia Romeo Theken, community leaders and city officials.  All are welcome to join.

The Gloucester Green team and Mass Save will also be available at Saturday’s 2017 Cape Ann Sustainability Fair to help residents sign up for the Home Energy Assessment.

Residents can look forward to more information throughout the year to save energy in their homes and help make Gloucester a greener community.  Residents are encouraged to sign up for a no-cost Home Energy Assessment today by going to or calling 1-866-527-SAVE (7283).

The unveiling of Gloucester Green comes on the heels of recent achievements in reducing the carbon footprint of City facilities.  This past year, the City reached its Green Communities goal to reduce energy consumption by 20% of 2009 levels, which results in a 35% reduction in carbon dioxide emissions.  In August of 2016 Environment Massachusetts recognized Gloucester as one of 18 communities leading the way in the state in sustainability, renewable energy, and energy conservation.   In December 2016 Mr. Coogan, Senior Planner and Clean Energy Manager for the City, received a Leading by Example award from the Baker-Polito Administration for his outstanding efforts to implement policies and programs that have led to significant and measurable environmental and energy benefits for Gloucester.  Gloucester Green is an effort to continue the City’s commitment to environmental stewardship by reaching out to help residents save energy and save money.


About City of Gloucester:

Under the leadership of Mayor Sefatia Romeo Theken, Gloucester Massachusetts is home to America’s oldest seaport and art colony, the rich cultural history of Gloucester is bound to spark your interest. With dozens of museums and historical sites across the community from Rocky Neck to Lanesville, people can learn how ships are made, see how people lived 300 years ago and visit memorials to fishermen and their families.

About National Grid:

National Grid (LSE: NG; NYSE: NGG) is an electricity and natural gas delivery company that connects nearly 7 million customers to vital energy sources through its networks in New York, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island. It is the largest distributor of natural gas in the Northeast. National Grid also operates the systems that deliver gas and electricity across Great Britain. Through its U.S. Connect21 strategy, National Grid is transforming its electricity and natural gas networks to support the 21st-century digital economy with smarter, cleaner, and more resilient energy solutions. Connect21 is vital to our communities’ long-term economic and environmental health and aligns with regulatory initiatives in New York (REV: Reforming the Energy Vision) and Massachusetts (Grid Modernization). For more information, please visit our website or our Connecting website, follow us on Twitter, watch us on YouTube, friend us on Facebook.