HCN News & Notes

Cancer Connection Welcomes the Rev. Beverly Herbert as Executive Director

NORTHAMPTON — The Rev. Beverly Herbert has joined Cancer Connection as executive director.

“Cancer Connection has not only impacted the lives of people across the Pioneer Valley living with cancer, but it has impacted my life, as a two-time cancer survivor,” Herbert said. “Cancer imposes itself in your life when you least expect it, and you think cancer equals death. Well, Cancer Connection is a place where we honor life.”

Herbert has worked as a municipal director of city planning and community and economic development, and has held interim executive director positions at a community-action agency and a community-development corporation. Most recently, she worked for Pathlight, Billings Forge Community Works in Hartford, Conn., and the city of Wilmington, N.C. She was honored by the Assoc. of Fundraising Professionals of Western Mass. in 2017 as a fundraising professional and as chapter president.

“We are looking forward to Beverly’s leadership in building on our solid reputation and financial stability, implementing our strategic plan, broadening our reach into new communities, and discerning the services and programming we can add to our already impressive list of offerings,” said Becky Jones, board president. “Her enthusiastic passion for Cancer Connection is contagious. We welcome the infusion of her energy and direction.”

Formerly a pastor of the A.M.E. Zion Church, Herbert said she has been touched by love through her faith and shares that love with all she meets. “Through Cancer Connection, I became part of a family — one full of love and life, in spite of the common cancer thread.”

Herbert attended a support group and used other services at the center, she added. “I was able to be myself and discover parts of myself that I hadn’t had the chance to explore. To be accepted and loved for me. It just so happened I had cancer. We try to make everyone feel they’re getting special treatment. This place is about the people, the parents, children, brothers and sisters. The ‘C’ affects everybody, and we’re here to support them, love them, and be part of their team.”

The center is well-known for its integrative therapies offered for stress and pain relief, support groups, and classes. It now offers a metastatic breast-cancer support group funded by Rays of Hope. “There had been no community of support for people living with metastatic breast cancer, but now they have found one another,” Jones said.

Cancer Connection was recently awarded a one-time $50,000 grant by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation through the efforts of one grateful participant connected with the foundation. The Cancer Connection Thrift Shop located in Northampton has also been winning awards. “Our local donors, foundations, and the Thrift Shop have helped us grow in the kinds and numbers of services we make available to people,” Jones added.

Herbert will be introduced to the Cancer Connection community at the organization’s annual Harvest Celebration, a dinner and silent auction to be held Friday, Oct. 26 at Quonquont Farm in Whately. For more information and to purchase tickets online, visit cancer-connection.org or call the center at (413) 586-1642. Cancer Connection programs and services are offered free to people facing cancer and their loved ones and caregivers. The center is located at 41 Locust St. in Northampton and serves the Pioneer Valley and beyond.

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