Four women-owned businesses in Herkimer and Oneida counties were each awarded $5,000 to support the growth and development of their businesses. A total of $20,000 was awarded by The Women’s Fund of Herkimer and Oneida Counties. This grant initiative is also supported by Baird Private Wealth Management and Griffiss Institute.

This is the second year of the grant initiative which began in 2022 to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the founding of The Women’s Fund. The Women’s Fund was created by women to support economic, educational and personal growth opportunities for women and girls and encourage their advancement and full participation in their communities.

The 2023 award recipients are:

  • Keaton & Lloyd Bookshop, Rome – Julie Whittemore. The grant will be supporting the setup of an electronic inventory system to facilitate online sales;
  • Realm Chiropractic, Herkimer – Amanda Abdagic. The grant will purchase an additional chiropractic table for her business;
  • The Treehouse Reading and Arts Center, New York Mills – Joanna Robertson. The company will use the funds to expand the center’s partnerships with area schools and their students; and
  • Uniquely Yours, Utica – Linda Aloisio. The funds will provide for the purchase of hardware and software for onsite 3D renderings for clients.

“We are very proud to provide this opportunity for women business owners again this year,” stated Janet Richmond, president of the Board of Directors of The Women’s Fund. “We had more than 50 applicants from Oneida and Herkimer counties which is a testament to the number of women-owned businesses in our communities. One of our priorities for this grant initiative is to help area businesses, owned by women, thrive and grow.”

The grant applicants had to be 51% women-owned, operating for a minimum of one year and located in Herkimer or Oneida counties.

“Our grant initiative, Women Investing In Women, began last year and the feedback and support from businesses and individuals to continue to provide this type of grant opportunity for women in the area has been inspiring,” said Ellen Rainey, Women’s Fund board member and chairperson of the program. “We have stayed connected to our 2022 grant recipients. Their energy and growth are what motivates us to do more for area women who are working to make a difference and serve as role models in our communities.”

“Baird Private Wealth Management is excited that The Women’s Fund is continuing this grant initiative,” said Michele Sheridan, Director and Certified Financial Planner at Baird. “Working in the traditionally male-dominated field of finance, I understand the barriers women can face as they work to become successful business owners. These grants make a positive difference in women’s lives and we at Baird we are proud to partner with the Women’s Fund and Griffiss Institute to support women in our community.”

The award ceremony was held at The Griffiss Institute on the Griffiss Business and Technology Park in Rome. The Griffiss Institute attracts, develops and supports tech startup businesses in the Mohawk Valley.

Heather Hage, president and CEO of Griffiss Institute said, “Griffiss Institute is truly honored to once again be part of the Women Investing in Women program. Small businesses are the cornerstone of a strong regional economy, and these women have not only shattered glass ceilings but also inspire others to dream big and pursue their entrepreneurial aspirations. We are proud to uplift, support, and empower women entrepreneurs to grow their businesses here in the Mohawk Valley.”

The Women’s Fund of Herkimer and Oneida Counties is a grassroots, volunteer-driven, not-for-profit which is funded by donor contributions. The Women’s Fund has gifted more than $650,000 to individuals and organizations in its 26 years of service to Herkimer and Oneida Counties. For more information visit the Women’s Fund at