Portland-based El Rayo, shown here, and Rivalries restaurant are delivering meals to health care workers at Mercy Hospital and Maine Medical Center. Contributed / Portland Regional Chamber of Commerce

Portland Chamber, local businesses support hospital workers

As Maine enters the second year of the COVID-19 pandemic, Portland Regional Chamber of Commerce has partnered with member businesses to deliver meals to front-line workers at Mercy Hospital and Maine Medical Center.

The initiative was begun to “remember the tireless efforts of our essential workers, who have been continuously keeping the community safe under extremely difficult and exhausting circumstances,” according to a release by the chamber.

Bernstein Shur law firm is partnering with local restaurant El Rayo to deliver authentic Mexican cuisine.

“We are thrilled to provide a little support and, most importantly, a ‘thank-you’ to the heroic staff at Maine Med and Mercy Hospital,” El Rayo owner Tod Dana said. 

MEMIC insurance company has committed to giving 100 meals per week over the next two months and Hannaford is giving back to essential workers by donating Hannaford gift cards. CPort Credit Union will be assisting by partnering with local sports bar Rivalries to bring lunches to both Maine Med and Mercy over the next couple of weeks.

“MEMIC’s focus as a company is on the well-being of the workforce, and a healthy workforce includes being appreciated as well as being well-fed,” said Senior Vice President of External Affairs Tony Payne.



Led by Managing Director Fred Williams and Senior Advisor Cliff Ryan, Old Port Advisors and Elder Planning Advisors recently announced their affiliation and now offer more than 50 years of experience in wealth management.

Old Port Advisors also plans to expand its services, leaning into inter-generational wealth management. Clients will also benefit from additional experienced staff, enhanced technology and the convenience of two locations in the Old Port and South Portland.


Paul Peck is this year’s Robert B. Patterson Jr. Founder’s Award winner, Maine Real Estate and Development Association announced.

Peck is the founder of LWS Development LLC, a Maine real estate development company, and has been a member of MEREDA’s Board of Directors since 2010. He served as volunteer president from 2016-2018. His contributions were recognized previously in 2012 when he received MEREDA’s President’s Award.

This year’s President’s Award goes to Andrea Cianchette Maker for her lasting contributions as Public Policy Counsel. The contributions of Rep. Ryan Fecteau, speaker of the Maine House of Representatives, were recognized by Public Policy Award. The Volunteer of the Year Award was given to Craig Young, who joined the board in 2015 and serves on MEREDA’s Executive Committee as vice president.

Giving back

The second annual OceanView at Falmouth Plein Air art auction in November raised $1,400 for the new Falmouth Memorial Library. The amount raised at auction was matched by an anonymous donor, bringing the total to $2,800.


Organizations that received a portion of $146,750 from the Maine Community Foundation’s Rines Thompson Fund include Friends of Congress Square Park, which will use its $6,000 grant for concerts, films, markets and to expand its winter programming. The Maine Audubon Society was awarded $5,000 to help kids restore green spaces near their homes and schools. Another $7,500 went to Portland Youth Corps, which gives teens opportunities to care for the environment, gain leadership experience and earn a stipend.

“ProsperityME is thrilled and honored to be the very first recipient of a $10,000 grant from the Atlantic Federal Credit Union Foundation,” Executive Director Claude Rwaganje said upon learning of the grant award. “This grant will support our efforts to help recent immigrants acquire the knowledge they need to be financially successful and feel empowered to invest in themselves and their newfound community.”

ProsperityME helps to provide basic money management understanding and skillsets to enable New Mainers to attain financial stability.