Newsmakers: A wealth advisor, some scholarships and a Beacon anniversary fundraiser

Editor’s note: Newsmakers is a new regular feature spotlighting accomplishments of Newton community members, businesses and organizations.

Newton Community Pride awards scholarships

Newton Community Pride has awarded $1,000 scholarships to three Newton high school seniors:

  • Nisaiah Barbosa, Newton North High School/METCO, will attend Northeastern to study graphic design and music production.
  • Frances Mattioli, Newton North High School, will attend New York University to study music.
  • Anna Kladova, Newton South High School will attend Pratt University to study painting and drawing.

Newton Community Pride is a nonprofit organization promoting arts, culture, service and beautification around the city. The scholarship was initiated by Nancy Quint Schon, who created the Make Way for Ducklings figures in Boston and outside the Newton Free Library.

Newton Community Pride logo.

Newton gets $3.5 million in federal housing funds

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development is giving Massachusetts $155 million in funding to try to ease the state’s housing crisis, and more than $3.5 million of that is going to Newton.

The HUD money is aimed at addressing local housing needs, with resources to build homes and support renters while providing emergency help for people experiencing homelessness.

“The cost of housing is the biggest challenge facing Massachusetts,” U.S. Rep. Jake Auchincloss, D-Newton, said. “Paired with state-and-local zoning reform that permits more multi-family and mixed-use development, these federal grants will foster the creation of affordable housing to help address the cost of-living challenge for Bay Staters.”

U.S. Rep. Jake Auchincloss, D-Newton. Photo by Bryan McGonigle

Newton Wealth Advisor Named to Forbes List

Carl Cafaro, a private wealth advisor at Merrill Lynch Wealth Management in Newton, has been named to the Forbes 2024 “America’s Top Wealth Advisors” list.

Cafaro began his career at Fidelity Investments before moving to Merrill Lynch in 2002. He advises high-net-worth senior executives, business owners and multi-generational families on how to grow and manage their wealth and has won numerous top advisor awards over the years.

Cafaro graduated from Assumption University He is a 1998 graduate of Assumption University and has a master’s degree in higher education administration from Boston College. He serves on the Board of Trustees at Assumption University, as a member of the Catalina Film Festival board and on the advisory board at Engaging Minds, a learning center for young students. He also is a member of the President’s Council at the New England Center for Children.

Carl Cafaro. Courtesy Photo

Newton Beacon Marks a Year Online with Spring Fundraiser

Newton Beacon hosted a Spring Fundraiser on Thursday evening to mark a year since the publication launched.

Featured guest was Pulitzer Prize winner and Northeastern University School of Journalism Director Jonathan Kaufman.

Kaufman spoke about the need for local journalism as a way to hold a community together.

“Even if we disagree about some of the big political issues, we can all agree that we like it when Newton North basketball does well, or we can argue about our neighbor about a zoning issue, and we care about our schools,” Kaufman said. “Newton has issues that are increasingly that are becoming very important. We’ve seen that in the past year. And I think that if you have a vital news organization—or in Newton’s case, two vital news organizations—then people can talk about the issues, they can work them out, and they can build a stronger community.”

The Newton Beacon, which operates largely on donations, was started as a means of providing news and in-depth reporting to Newton as local newspapers in the region, the state and across the country close down.

The Newton Beacon is part of a larger trend, as more and more independent nonprofit local news outlets emerge to fill the news desert created by that newspaper mass-extinction.

Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Jonathan Kaufman speaks at the Newton Beacon’s Spring Fundraiser. Photo by Bryan McGonigle
Newton News Foundation President Joe Hunter speaks at the Newton Beacon’s Spring Fundraiser at the home of Bill and Linda McLaughlin on May 9. Photo by Bryan McGonigle
The Newton Beacon held a Spring Fundraiser on May 9. Photo by Bryan McGonigle
Newton Beacon Board member Isaac Fine speaks at the publication’s Spring Fundraiser. Photo by Bryan McGonigle