Nantahala Health Foundation Executive Director Lori Bailey (front, right) presents Amber Coffey, owner of Coffey Customs, with $2,400 in grant funds made available through the Duke Energy Foundation’s Hometown Revitalization Program. Coffey’s grant application earned high praise from the Advantage Andrews Award Committee. As the administrator of the program, Nantahala Health Foundation worked closely with Coffey and 23 other business owners to identify and invest in their COVID-19 recovery plans. Coffey’s plan includes upgrading her plasma metal-cutter to ensure her business continues to add value to Andrews’ economic recovery efforts. Also pictured and displaying some of Coffey’s custom creations are (front, from left) Duke Energy District Manager Lisa Leatherman and Coffey’s daughter, Taylor. Members of the Advantage Andrews Award Committee are (back, from left) Murphy Mayor Tim Radford, Andrews businessman and Nantahala Health Foundation board member Tom O’Brien, Andrews Mayor James Reid and Andrews High School Principal Lance Bristol. Committee members not pictured are Andrews Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Nola Cooper and Andrews Town Administrator Sandy Dobson. – NHF Photo
January 7, 2022
Nantahala Health Foundation, Duke Energy Foundation, Town of Andrews Collaborate to Invest in Town’s Recovery Efforts
Nantahala Health Foundation and the Town of Andrews are pleased to announce that 24 small businesses have been awarded Duke Energy Foundation Hometown Revitalization grant investments to aid their efforts to recover from COVID-19’s negative impacts.
Businesses and owners selected to receive Advantage Andrews grant investments are:
- 992 Main Street Consignments, JoAnne Page
- Andrews Florist, Marty Hooper
- Andrews Tanning & Cellular, Laurie Barlow
- Ann’s Tree, Ann Woodford
- Burger Basket, Teresa Carpenter
- Coffey Customs LLC, Amber Coffey
- Cups & Cones Café, Pam Smith
- Expo Management Inc., Bill Anderson
- Fern Crest Winery, Janis Olson
- Grandpa Charlies Country Cookin’, Angela Callahan
- Granieris Restaurant/Food Truck, Frank Colontonio
- Homespun Hobbies, LLC, Hannah Johnston
- Hoppy Trout Brewing Co., Thomas Rodeck
- Howell & Howell, LLC, David Howell
- Locust Trading Company, Margo Locust
- Maennle Insurance & Investments, Michael Maennle
- Nancy’s Treasures, Nancy Purser
- Parting Glass Pub, Eric West
- Performing Arts Hair Design & Gift Shop, Teresa Rogers
- Reap What U Sew, Rachel Carr
- Salon El-Khouri & Day Spa, Anthony El-Khouri
- Snowbird Mountains Brewery, Terry Vaughn
- Station House Cohosting, Lynn Hushion
- The Compound, James Ellis
Nantahala Health Foundation, with support from Town of Andrews officials, pursued and was awarded a $25,000 Duke Energy Foundation Hometown Revitalization Program grant this past fall. In addition to administering the funds on behalf of the town and managing the grant-making process, Nantahala Health Foundation supported local officials in their effort to inform local businesses – from restaurants to retailers – struggling to adapt to the unprecedented challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic of this opportunity.
“Most of our town’s small businesses struggled to remain open during 2020 and 2021,” said Andrews Mayor James Reid, who headed up the Advantage Andrews Award Committee. “We are grateful to Duke Energy Foundation for making these grant funds available and to Nantahala Health Foundation for helping us get the word out about this opportunity and for working so closely with the business leaders who applied.”
Andrews Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Nola Cooper, who also served on the Advantage Andrews Award Committee, concurred with the mayor’s thoughts, and added her thanks that these funds became available just as the town’s economic vitality was beginning to swing upwards and should help ensure the town’s recovery remains on the right track.
“As COVID travel restrictions were relaxing, Andrews played host to a multitude of public events this past year to help visitors find their way back to our town,” said Cooper. “Now that COVID’s third winter is upon us, these funds will go a long way toward helping our businesses remain vital and come back even stronger this spring.”
Lori Bailey, Nantahala Health Foundation’s Executive Director, pointed to the many innovative recovery plans proposed by local business owners as indicators of Andrews’ bright future. “From restaurant expansions to gallery openings to the creation of new jobs, Andrews business owners told us through their applications how dedicated they are to supporting the town’s economic vitality, which, in turn, contributes to an overall healthier community,” Bailey said.
Amber Coffey, whose business, Coffey Customs, received the largest of the 24 Advantage Andrews investments, thanked the committee for their support of her business and all the grant recipients. “Our customers come to Andrews from all over to pick up pre-ordered items or simply browse my shop,” she said. “When they do, I also refer them to local restaurants and other places in our town. We need to work together to build up all of our businesses and ensure Andrews continues to thrive.”
Hannah Johnson, owner of Homespun Hobbies, thanked the Advantage Andrews Award Committee and Nantahala Health Foundation for recognizing the town’s needs and for bringing Duke Energy Foundation’s Hometown Revitalization Program to their aid.
“I grew up in this town, so I have a special place for it in my heart,” Johnson said. “Andrews is coming alive again, thanks to so many people putting in lots of hard work, and I would like to contribute to that growth.”
Recognizing a dire need related to COVID recovery within the business communities they serve, Duke Energy Foundation launched its Hometown Revitalization grant program by making $750,000 in total funding support available to 30 communities throughout the state.
“It’s rewarding to see such a wonderfully diverse group of small businesses in Andrews impacted by these Duke Energy grants,” said Lisa Leatherman, Duke Energy’s government and community relations manager. “These locally owned shops and storefronts are what make Andrews unique, so we’re proud to do our part in helping them recover and thrive once again.”
In addition to Andrews, Robbinsville in Graham County was the only other town west of Asheville to be selected to participate in Duke Energy’s Hometown Revitalization Program.
About Nantahala Health Foundation
Working as a catalyst for innovation and collaboration, Nantahala Health Foundation seeks to partner with nonprofit organizations and governmental agencies in Cherokee, Clay, Graham, Jackson, Macon, and Swain counties and the Qualla Boundary to achieve better health and wellness outcomes for all. By working to address the upstream, root causes of health inequities and by removing barriers to positive social determinants of health, NHF’s success is seen best in partnerships with regional change-makers. Since its establishment in 2019, NHF has awarded nearly $3.13 million in support to some 148 programs throughout the region. Visit NHF’s website to join their Healthy Future Movement.
About Duke Energy Foundation
The Duke Energy Foundation is proud to power the vitality of North Carolina communities through philanthropy focused on vibrant economies; climate resiliency; and justice, equity and inclusion. More than $30 million in charitable grants each year are the driver behind impact and improvements in our communities.