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Mayor's Press Room Announcements

Mayor Craig Announces iFundWomen NH Crowdfunding Platform for Women Entrepreneurs

Published: 03/07/2019

Mayor Craig, The Center for Women and Enterprise, the New Hampshire Women’s Foundation, and iFundWomen join forces to launch a crowdfunding experience dedicated to providing New Hampshire women entrepreneurs with the capital, coaching, creative and connections needed to start and grow businesses.

MANCHESTER, N.H. – March 7, 2019 - Today, on the eve of International Women’s Day 2019, Mayor Joyce Craig, the Center for Women and Enterprise, the New Hampshire Women’s Foundation, and iFundWomen, the only crowdfunding ecosystem designed for female entrepreneurs, announced the launch of iFundWomen New Hampshire, a statewide initiative to drive funding to early-stage women-led businesses.

There are 12.3 million female entrepreneurs in the United States alone, and with female founders starting businesses at 4.8 times the national average, it is without question that women-owned firms in the State of New Hampshire have the potential to play a much bigger role in the local economy. 

Despite advancements, funding options for these female entrepreneurs remain limited with women only receiving 2.2% of the venture capital dollars allocated. This leaves few traditional options for female business owners who are left to max out credit cards or take out loans to fund their startups.  iFundWomen New Hampshire is a solution to this funding problem, providing women-owned businesses with the access to capital they need to help them successfully launch and grow, create jobs, and have a positive impact on New Hampshire’s economic development.

“This is a wonderful opportunity for women entrepreneurs across our State,” said Manchester Mayor Joyce Craig. “By establishing a system that helps female business owners gain access to capital, we can make our New Hampshire business landscape more representative of those who live here.”

All women-led businesses that are launching, growing, pivoting, or marketing their product or service in the State of New Hampshire are strongly encouraged to sign up for the inaugural cohort. Entrepreneurs who sign up will have the option to start their crowdfunding campaigns immediately or receive coaching first. They will have access to video production services, a community of entrepreneurs utilizing the iFundWomen platform, as well as local, one-on-one crowdfunding coaching, offered by New Hampshire entrepreneur and iFundWomen Certified Crowdfunding Coach, Kristin Hardwick. “I’m thrilled to help bring iFundWomen to New Hampshire because it’s an amazing service that I wished I had when starting out. Being able to serve and support this community is an exciting honor,” said Hardwick.

“It is critical that female founders of New Hampshire have access to a crowdfunding platform that provides them with a low-risk, efficient path to funding, allowing them to prove demand for their products or services before they invest in supply, all without the risk of going into debt funding their startups. Together we are heeding the call, and bringing iFundWomen New Hampshire to life,” said Karen Cahn, Founder and CEO of iFundWomen. “When women empower women, the whole world benefits, and the fact that Nancy Pearson, Director of the Center for Women and Enterprise in New Hampshire, saw this opportunity and immediately connected with Mayor Craig to launch this cohort speaks volumes about their commitment to the women entrepreneurs in New Hampshire.”

The Center for Women and Enterprise has worked with more than 46,000 Massachusetts, Rhode Island, New Hampshire and Vermont entrepreneurs since 1995. CWE also operates the Veterans Business Outreach Center of New England (VBOC of NE) that focuses on assisting veterans, active duty service members and their families with starting and growing their business.

“Funding is one of the biggest hurdles for women entrepreneurs, and I’ve been keeping an eye on the success stories on the iFundWomen crowdfunding platform, which was created by women for women,” said Pearson. “New Hampshire women entrepreneurs are typically right on, or ahead of, national trends, so 2019 is the perfect time to jointly launch this initiative in the Granite State.”

Finally, the iFundWomen New Hampshire cohort is made possible in part by the New Hampshire Women’s Foundation, a statewide foundation investing in opportunity and equality for women and girls in New Hampshire. “The Women’s Foundation is proud to support the Center for Women and Enterprise and iFundWomen New Hampshire because we believe providing tools, resources and funding to women business owners will positively impact women, families, and communities across the Granite State. We are excited to see this statewide initiative grow,” says Tanna Clews, CEO.


Mayor Joyce Craig to Participate in Waypoint’s Fifth Annual SleepOut

Published: 02/19/2019

For the second year in a row, Manchester Mayor Joyce Craig will spend a night outside to raise awareness and money for homeless youth in New Hampshire.

Craig is participating in Waypoint’s fifth annual SleepOut, an event dedicated to raising community awareness and funds to help stabilize and transform the lives of homeless youth in New Hampshire. The event will take place on March 22 in downtown Manchester at Stanton Plaza in front of the DoubleTree Hotel.

“I’m looking forward to participating in Waypoint’s SleepOut again this year,” said Mayor Joyce Craig. “Homelessness is a moral challenge, and we must address it with empathy and resolve. By raising funds and supporting organizations such as Waypoint, our community will ensure homeless youth have access to the critical support they need.”

The Mayor will be joined by her entire office at the SleepOut, including Chief of Staff Ryan Mahoney, Policy and Strategic Outreach Director Lauren Smith and Community Outreach Director Donald Stokes.

Waypoint works to stabilize the lives of more than 1,500 runaway, homeless and at-risk youth in Manchester, Concord, Littleton and the Seacoast every year. They provide basic needs such as food and clothing, and connections to shelter and medical care. In addition, Waypoint provides mental health and substance abuse counseling and helps youth with educational advocacy, employment, and housing.

To learn more about Waypoint’s SleepOut event, visit their website. If you’d like to support Mayor Craig’s team, donate here.

Manchester opioid overdoses and overdose deaths decreasing

Published: 01/03/2019

Most of New Hampshire saw opioid overdoses continue to rise

January 3, 2019 -- This morning, Mayor Joyce Craig praised American Medical Response (AMR)’s recent report that opioid overdoses and opioid overdose deaths are decreasing in the City of Manchester.

“This is the first time Manchester has seen a decrease in opioid overdoses since this epidemic began,” said Mayor Joyce Craig. “In the last year, we have worked to develop a new system of care for those seeking help from substance use disorder. I believe strong partnerships and the success of our Safe Station program can directly be attributed to Manchester’s decreasing opioid overdose rate. Unlike Manchester, opioid overdoses across New Hampshire are continuing to rise. There’s still much more we need to do, but this is a positive step in working to eliminate opioid overdoses in our city.”

Since its inception, the Safe Station program in Manchester has seen 4,837 people come into local fire stations. However, by developing a new system of care in 2018, the average time it takes to get an individual into treatment through Manchester Safe Station decreased from two to three weeks to two to three days. It takes an average of nine minutes to get an individual through Manchester’s Safe Station access point.

As a result of Manchester’s Treatment and Recovery Network developed in 2018, individuals seeking help through Safe Station are screened for multiple needs, including homelessness, mental health issues and substance use disorder. Once needs are assessed, individuals are connected to various organizations to get them the help they need.

“There are many people who make our system of care work,” added Mayor Craig. “The Manchester Fire Department, the Manchester Police Department, the Manchester Health Department, AMR, Granite Pathways, the Farnum Center, Elliot Hospital, Catholic Medical Center, the Mental Health Center of Greater Manchester, Makin’ It Happen, Families in Transition - New Horizons, Granite United Way, the New Hampshire Charitable Foundation and others have continued to work with the city to develop a system that is saving lives.”


Free Travel for Holiday Shopping

Published: 12/19/2018

Mayor Joyce Craig and the Manchester Transit Authority (MTA) are pleased to announce from December 18 to December 24, all stops along Route 8 will be offered free of charge.

"The Mall of New Hampshire, the businesses along South Willow Street and downtown Manchester are all wonderful places to do some holiday shopping," said Mayor Joyce Craig. "By eliminating the bus fares on Route 8 until December 24th, we're hoping to give people a stress-free holiday experience in great shopping areas across our city."

MTA Route 8 makes six regular loop stops -- the Downtown Manchester Doubletree Hotel, Michaels/Burlington Coat Factory Plaza on South Willow Street, Walmart on Gold Street, the Mall of New Hampshire, South Willow Street and Weston Road, and Downtown Manchester.

Mayor Craig Announces Next Round of Community Office Hours

Published: 12/19/2018

Mayor to continue holding public meetings to keep lines of communication open

Today, Mayor Joyce Craig announced she will host a series of community office hours throughout the city beginning on Wednesday, January 3, 2019.

Community office hour dates will continue to be scheduled throughout the year. While dates and times may be subject to change, the current schedule is as follows:

With City Clerk Matt Normand
Wednesday, January 9 | 5:30pm
Manchester Police Athletic League, 409 Beech St. 

With Assessor Bob Gagne
Tuesday, January 15 | 11:00am
William B. Cashin Senior Center, 151 Douglas St.

With City Solicitor Emily Rice
Wednesday, January 23 | 12:00pm
Bridge Cafe, 1117 Elm Street

With Economic Development Director Melanie Sanuth
Wednesday, February 6 | 12:00pm
Noodz Noodle Bar, 968 Elm St.

With Planning & Community Development Director Leon LaFreniere
Wednesday, February 20 | 12:00pm
Restoration Cafe, 235 Hanover St.

With Welfare Director Charleen Michaud
Monday, March 4 | 5:30pm
Manchester Community Resource Center, 434 Lake Ave.

Manchester Libraries Eliminate Overdue Fines on Materials for Young Learners

Published: 10/01/2018

This morning, Manchester Library Staff and Trustees and Mayor Joyce Craig announced all Manchester public libraries will eliminate overdue fines on children’s and young adult collections, starting today.

“With this move, we can truly say any child in our community can afford to check out a book at our libraries,” said Mayor Joyce Craig. “The libraries in Manchester are much more than a collection of books — they’re pivotal centers of our community. No child should be unable to engage in learning because of their family’s income level.”

The decision to eliminate overdue fines is part of a growing national trend in library policies to promote reading. Manchester library staff also noticed there was an issue once they held discussions with families who said they hadn’t been to a library in years due to their inability to pay late fees.

“We’ve recently begun working closer with the Manchester School District, and we realized we needed books to be as accessible as they can to our children and students,” said Denise van Zanten, Library Director. “Eliminating fines on materials for our young learners will continue to promote early literacy and drive our efforts forward.”

“By eliminating fines on children’s and young adult materials, we are taking down a barrier and opening a door to a critical resource for children and teens where they can continue to learn and grow,” added Karyn Isleb, Head of Youth Services and Alex Graves, Teen Librarian, Manchester City Library.

Library users will still be asked to pay for lost or damaged children and young adult items.

For more information about the Manchester City Library and our programs and activities please contact the Library at (603) 624-6550 or visit our website. 

City, State Collaboration Bringing New Tech Jobs to Manchester

Published: 09/26/2018

BAE Systems Expanding NH Footprint with Big Plans in Manchester

The New Hampshire Department of Business and Economic Affairs, the City of Manchester, and the New Hampshire Business Finance Authority are pleased to announce expansion plans by one of New Hampshire’s largest employers and leader in its aerospace and defense industry.

BAE Systems is finalizing plans to occupy 3000 Goffs Falls Rd. to expand its operations. The 220,000-sf site, located off Brown Avenue, with close access to Manchester-Boston Regional Airport and Interstates 93 and 293, will enable the company to attract the talent it needs to initially fill 400 high-paying positions.  The Manchester Mayor and Board of Aldermen will consider details on the proposed expansion.

“This is a great example of how working quickly and creatively with the business community can yield impressive results,” said Gov. Chris Sununu.  “No income or sales tax, great schools, incredible natural beauty, ease of access to urban centers  and a vibrant and dynamic workforce all contribute to there really being no better place to live, work and raise a family.  We look forward to continuing to work collaboratively to meet the needs BAE Systems expansion efforts and bring more job opportunities to Granite Staters.”

Taylor Caswell, commissioner of the Department of Business and Economic Affairs, said a collaborative effort with BAE Systems, the City of Manchester and the Business Finance Authority supported the needs of the company in making the decision to expand. 

“There is no way we would have reached this point without deep collaboration among teams from our department, the City of Manchester, and the NH Business Finance Authority,” said Caswell. “Our ability to work as a team to help employers meet expansion or relocation goals is critical to what we offer as a state.”

The City of Manchester will continue its support of BAE Systems’ expansion, said Mayor Joyce Craig.

“I’m thrilled BAE Systems has chosen to expand here in Manchester,” she said. “Manchester is the economic hub for the state. This is the first time the City of Manchester, the Department of Business and Economic Affairs and the Business Finance Authority have worked together to bring new, good paying jobs into the Queen City. We now have a successful model, and I look forward to continue promoting Manchester’s pro-business environment.” 

The New Hampshire Business Finance Authority understands the significance of BAE Systems to the state’s growing aerospace and defense industry, said Executive Director James Key Wallace.

“This partnership with BAE provides an exciting opportunity for Manchester and all of the communities supported by BAE’s significant presence in the state. Our innovative and collaborative approach to structuring this expansion shows that New Hampshire is able to attract world class companies who create high quality jobs,” he said.

Dartmouth Study Finds Manchester’s Safe Station Program Effective and Engaging

Published: 09/20/2018

Report concludes Safe Station is a “welcome and effective response to the prolific opioid crisis”

The Center for Technology and Behavioral Health at Dartmouth College recently announced their summary of findings following a seven-month study of the Safe Station program in Manchester, N.H.

Funded by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), this study sought to identify the Safe Station program’s key components and characterize the workflow and partnerships that support the Safe Station program at the Manchester Fire Department (MFD).

Study participants included seven team members from Dartmouth College who conducted onsite observations from September 2017 to April 2018. Interviewed study participants included:

  • 29 MFD firefighters and leaders
  • 49 individuals seeking help at Safe Station
  • 6 local emergency department staff
  • Four local ambulance staff from American Medical Response (AMR)
  • Six staff of Serenity Place

Key Takeaways:

  • In the midst of the study, Serenity Place closed. The study team evaluated the evolution to the new model and reported:
    • “Clients believed it was quicker”
    • “MFD and AMR staff said it was a lot better because of the stability, experience and medical staff at new treatment partners, as well as the rapid arrival of Lyft.”
  • Clients feel the program is engaging and effective
    • “From early childhood, we were raised to trust firemen [...] they save people for a living. So going there was comfortable.”
    • “[Clients] felt safe and that their privacy was protected, and they got help getting into a treatment facility the moment they wanted it.”
  • Safe Station is believed to be sustainable in Manchester.
    • “There was strong agreement across stakeholders that Safe Station is among the most helpful resources in the Manchester, N.H. community.”

“We can’t talk about the success of Safe Station without talking about the people who make this amazing program work,” said Mayor Joyce Craig. “The men and women at the Manchester Fire Department work tirelessly to ensure the safety and security of people seeking help through Safe Station. Our firefighters, alongside American Medical Response, Granite Pathways, the Farnum Center, Elliot Hospital, Catholic Medical Center, the Mental Health Center of Greater Manchester, Makin’ It Happen and others have developed a system that is saving lives. Today, it only takes an average of nine minutes to get an individual through Safe Station, and takes an average of two days to get someone into treatment. I applaud everyone who has put in countless hours to get Safe Station to where it is today. Because of this dedication, the Safe Station Program and Manchester’s Treatment and Recovery Network is saving lives.”

Manchester Firefighters Deployed to Help Ahead of Hurricane Florence

Published: 09/12/2018

Last night, The Manchester Fire Department sent Firefighters Mike Meehan and Tom Defina to North Carolina to assist with rescue and recovery efforts in preparation of Hurricane Florence.

Firefighter Defina and Firefighter Meehan deployed as a Swiftwater Rescue Task Force, part of the New Hampshire Taskforce, which consists of 12 other individuals.

“Firefighters Defina and Meehan may be gone for as many as ten days,” said Assistant Fire Chief Richard McGahey. “They received word that they were needed last night, and are now preparing to aid the Carolinas as Hurricane Florence approaches the coast.”

“I am grateful Firefighter Defina and Firefighter Meehan have volunteered to travel to North Carolina,” said Mayor Joyce Craig. “Manchester Firefighters work hard every day to keep our city safe, and I know they’ll be a tremendous asset to the efforts to aid residents who may be affected by Hurricane Florence.”

Firefighter Defina is a 19-year member of the Manchester Fire Department currently assigned to Rescue 1 while Firefighter Meehan is a 17-year member currently assigned to Truck 1. Both have completed Swiftwater Technician Certification through the New Hampshire Fire Academy and Defina is an Instructor for the program.

Florence is currently a Category 4 storm with sustained winds of 130 miles per hour. It is expected to reach the Carolinas overnight on Thursday, and could bring 20 inches of rain or more in some areas. More than a million people have been ordered to evacuate coastal areas.

City of Manchester Announces Winners in 13th Annual Employee & Family Art Show

Published: 08/27/2018

Mayor Joyce Craig and the City of Manchester are pleased to recognize the winners in the 13th Annual National Arts Program Exhibition, “Art on the Wall at City Hall.”  Mayor Craig and members of the Manchester Arts Commission, including Chairman Ed Doyle were on hand to present awards to all the winners. 

“I want to congratulate everyone who participated in ‘Art on the Wall at City Hall’ this year,” said Mayor Joyce Craig. “We received 121 submissions from everyone from elected officials to teachers to City employees and their family members. This event showcased the immense artistic talent within our city, and I want to thank everyone, especially the Manchester Arts Commission and Chairman Ed Doyle for making this all possible.”

All award recipients were chosen by an independent panel of judges.

The exhibition, which began on August 6th, will run until Wednesday, September 26th. The public is invited to view the show during the hours City Hall is open (Monday – Friday, 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m., and Tuesday 8:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m.)


The award winners are as follows:

People’s Choice – “The Lion King” by Terry Desrosiers

Mayor’s Choice – “Love Yourself” by Triniti DeSantis

Best of Show – “Untitled” by Julia Starr


Adult Amateur

First Place – “Oia Oasis” by Charleen Michaud

Second Place – “Stuck on Manchester” by Will Stewart

Third Place – "Raven’s Song“ by Colby Lynch

Honorable Mentions – “House a Leaning” Charles Pierson & “Kitty Hall” by Lauren Smith


Adult Intermediate

First Place – “Incoming” by Cole Shea

Third Place Tie– “Reuben” by Sonya Rousseau & “Plum Island” by Sheila Dubois

Honorable Mention – “Cardboard Castles” by Julia Starr


Adult Professional

First Place – “Palace Theatre” by Lori Sweeney

Second Place – “Mad River” by Jane Tentas

Third Place – “Treasure in the Woods” by Anthony Williams

Honorable Mention – “Lion King” by Theresa Desrochers & “Town Clocks” by Amy Christopher


Teen 13-18 

First Place – “Tomatoes” by Rylee Ducharme

Second Place – “Trash to Treasure” by Ethan Robinson

Third Place – “The Currier K” by Jocelyn Ryan

Honorable Mention – “Bound” by Skyelar Asselin, “Reflection" by Samatha Eastman, & “Under the Sea” by Susan Munley


Youth 12 & Under

First Place – “Love Yourself” by Triniti Desantis

Second Place – “Under the Sea” by Raquel Bouchard

Third Place – “Love” by Paschal Dionne

Honorable Mention – “Crouching Lion by Harper Bobotus & “Fournier Family” by Thomas Fournier


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