Page 30 - BusinessWest 40 Under Forty 2024
P. 30

     Chelsea McGrath knows what kind of impact home improvement can make.
“I never saw the impact until I started
working here — how mold affects health,
and how leaks, dirty carpets, dust, duct and
vent cleaning, things that are really simple in nature can have such a big ripple effect. Poorly controlled asthma means kids are missing school and falling behind, which means the parents are missing work.
“So to come in and do a relatively simple intervention — pull up the carpet, get rid of the mold and leaks — now the kids can go to school, the parents can go to work ... and it’s something that’s so easy to fix.”
That only begins to describe the broad community impact of Revitalize CDC. Meanwhile, the organization’s president and CEO, Colleen Shanley-Loveless, described McGrath’s impact since she came on board in 2021.
“Since joining us, Chelsea has hired staff, created new agency departments, and established policies and procedures to
help us work more efficiently,” she noted. “Because of her commitment, dedication, and professionalism, Revitalize CDC has been able to add programs and hire and promote the right individuals.”
That includes increasing the budget from $1.3 million in 2021 to almost $5 million today, and purchasing a new facility to house the programs
and growing staff. In 2020, Revitalize served 163 low-income families, impacting 657 people. In 2023, it served 650 families, impacting 2,521 individuals, Shanley-Loveless noted. “We couldn’t do what we do without her.”
Among the programs McGrath launched since her arrival is a nutrition program conducted, like the asthma program, in partnership with Baystate Health’s BeHealthy Partnership.
“We’re providing healthy food for people with diabetes or childhood obesity, and we’re able to educate people about proper food and make sure they have recipes and the supplies they need to cook food,” she said. “I’ve seen some dramatic changes — fewer trips to the emergency room, and some of the A1C scores have dropped.”
That’s real impact, and explains why McGrath tied for the highest judge scores among the 40 Under Forty class of 2024. So does her copious volunteer work with organizations like the WillPower Foundation, Rick’s Place, Yappy Tails dog rescue, and the Garden, a program at Cooley Dickinson Hospital for young people dealing with grief.
“If you’re in a position to help people, you have an obligation to do so,” McGrath said. “But I get so much out of it, too. It makes me happy. It makes me feel worthwhile. It’s not ‘why would I do that?’ but ‘why wouldn’t I?’” BW
—Joseph Bednar
   Revitalize CDC congratulates our Director of Operations and Finance,
Chelsea McGrath
on being named a
40 Under Forty honoree!
240 Cadwell Drive Springfield, MA 01104
      A30 2024
Chelsea McGrath
Director of Operations and Finance,
Revitalize Community Development Corp.: Age 36

   28   29   30   31   32