, Newburyport, MA

September 24, 2012

business briefs

Newburyport Daily News

---- — Georgetown Bank CEO celebrates 30 years of service

Robert E. Balletto, president and CEO of Georgetown Bank, was recently honored for 30 years of service to the bank.

Balletto, a longtime local resident and graduate of Georgetown schools, joined the Georgetown Bank team in August 1982 as assistant to the CEO. He quickly rose to the role of CEO in 1988 at the age of 32. He developed a deep understanding of the local market as well as keen interest in the impact banking services can have in improving the lives of individuals and families, businesses and the community as a whole, resulting in his early recognition as a leader in the banking industry.

Over the years, Balletto has led the independent bank through a series of technological and product innovations, in addition to an expansion of the branch network, to enhance and enrich the convenient customer service experience. Most recently, he spearheaded a name change and rebranding initiative, dropping “Savings” from the name to become Georgetown Bank, better reflecting the broader array of business and retail customers the bank serves. A new logo, accompanied by the tagline “Respectfully yours,” reinforces the bank’s commitment to treating its customers fairly.

For more on Georgetown Bank, visit or call 978-352-8600.

Good Tastes Kitchen named finalist in “American Made” program

Good Tastes Kitchen has been named one of 100 finalists for the Audience Choice Award in Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia’s inaugural “American Made,” a multimedia celebration of American artists, artisans and entrepreneurs. The “American Made” program will celebrate 10 rising stars — plus an 11th Audience Choice winner— from a range of lifestyle arenas including food, fashion, design, community, gardening, crafts and technology. The winners will be honored guests at a celebratory event on Oct. 16 and part of a unique pop-up experience at Grand Central Terminal.

The search for the Audience Choice winner began in August with an online nomination process on in which more than 2,000 entries were submitted nationwide. Finalists were then selected by the editors of Martha Stewart Living are now up for public vote at through Sept. 24. The Audience Choice winner — the finalist who receives the most votes — will be announced online Oct. 8. The winning entrepreneur will receive $10,000 to further his or her business, in addition to being featured in the December issue of Martha Stewart Living.

Good Tastes is a specialty food company located in Newburyport. Their product line of frozen, gourmet Mac & Cheese is distributed from Maine to Florida and as far west as Michigan in over 350 specialty and mass market retailers. The company’s founder, Sarah Pike, grew up on one of the first certified organic farms in Maine and learned that the freezer could be an amazing tool for preserving food in the most natural way.

The Provident Bank earns 5-star rating

The Provident Bank has once again earned the highest 5-Star Rating for positive performance from BauerFinancial, Inc., the nation’s bank rating firm. The quarterly ratings were announced on Sept. 6, and are based on June 30 financial data.

BauerFinancial provides third party, unbiased, independent bank and credit union star-ratings to help consumers select financial institutions with confidence. Using quarterly financial reports filed with federal regulators, it thoroughly analyzes and compares all U.S. bank and credit union current and historical performance data. Upon completion of the analysis, a star-rating is assigned based on a scale of zero to five stars, with five stars being the strongest. Since 1983, BauerFinancial has been analyzing and reporting on the financial condition of the nation’s banking industry, providing the public with the knowledge they need to make informed decisions regarding their banking relationships.

The Provident Bank is a mutually owned, independent community bank established in 1828 and based in Amesbury, with full-service locations in Amesbury and Newburyport, and Exeter, Hampton, Portsmouth and Seabrook, New Hampshire, and a lending office in Bedford, New Hampshire. The Provident Bank is dedicated to the delivery of quality financial products to its customers, providing the highest level of convenience, personal service and value. Service to the community and the professional development of employees are vital to The Provident Bank’s success.

All deposits are insured in full through a combination of insurance provided by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) and the Depositors Insurance Fund (DIF). For more information, visit

Merrimac Savings Bank donates flagpole

In a show of support for the community of Newton, N.H., Merrimac Savings Bank recently donated funds for the purchase of a new flagpole on the grounds of the new Newton Police Department, located at 8 Merrimac Road. The new flagpole was unveiled at a dedication ceremony on Saturday, Sept. 8.

Helping to install the new flagpole was Boy Scouts of America Troop 91 of Newton, who created the base upon which the 30-foot flagpole will sit. The official dedication ceremony involved a ribbon cutting, as well as the raising of the first flag. A cannon salute was also offered.

The dedication also featured a K-9 demonstration by both the Amesbury Canine Unit and the New Hampshire State Police Canine Unit; vehicles from two antique car clubs; pony rides; tours of the new police station; and free food.

Homebuyer Education Agency passes 1,000 homebuyer mark

Coastal Homebuyer Education, a local non-profit organization that has been educating first-time homebuyers in the area for the last 13 years, announced that it has granted course completion certificates to its 1,000th homebuyer household. The 999th and 1,000th households to receive certificates are brothers named Aaron and Corey Wear.

Coastal began operations in 2000 as a provider of comprehensive homebuyer education in northeast Massachusetts. The 10-hour workshop teaches budgeting skills, the steps involved in the home search and selection process, how to deal with lenders, and legal, insurance and tax-related issues.

The workshop is certified by the Massachusetts Homeownership Collaborative (a program of CHAPA, the Citizens Housing and Planning Association), MassHousing and the Massachusetts Housing Partnership Fund. Households that complete the curriculum receive certificates of completion that may be used to obtain reduced interest rates and special financing offered only to eligible first-time homebuyers. All households that have not owned a home over the past three years are considered first-time homebuyers. Exceptions to the three-year rule include divorced individuals and those who own a mobile home. These individuals may also be considered first-time homebuyers.

Households pay a fee of $50 to cover the cost of the workshop, including extensive written materials. The next workshop will be offered on Oct. 13 and 20, 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. For further information or to register for the workshop, go to or call 978-992-4106.


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