|Please join us in congratulating Karen King and Deb Forgione, Associates from RE/MAX Prestige!
Both women were recently recognized at the Massachusetts Commission on the Status of Women (MCSW) as two of the Commonwealth’s Unsung Heroines of 2012. They were honored for their volunteer and community work in their local communities.
Karen has been instrumental in the rebuild of her hometown of Monson, MA after last year’s devastating tornados. Karen formed a volunteer group that began passing out flyers with the contacts of local resources that people could turn to. In her efforts of helping those in need, she soon became the liaison between government agencies and the residents of Monson. She now has a foundation of Street Angels that has volunteers across the country that respond to towns who have experienced a natural disaster.
Deb is also incredibly involved in her hometown of Lowell. She is on the Pawtucketville Citizens Council, an organization that meets every month to discuss zoning, planning and conservation, and is an outlet for staying on top of what’s happening in everyone’s neighborhood. This organization partners with local organizations to bring events such as National Night Out, a neighborhood social and crime prevention outing. As a member of this vibrant, well-informed, and active neighborhood group, Deb has a strong voice in keeping her community safe and crime-free.
We’d like to say thank you to both of these amazing RE/MAX Agents! Their communities greatly benefit from their hard work. Congratulations!
Honors Are Given to Women for Outstanding Contributions to Their Community
BOSTON, MA (May 16, 2012) – RE/MAX of New England is pleased to announce that Karen King, Team Leader of the Karen King Group and REALTOR for RE/MAX Prestige, located at 2141 Boston Road in Wilbraham, MA, has been selected by the Massachusetts Commission on the Status of Women (MCSW) as one of the Commonwealth’s Unsung Heroines of 2012. She is being honored for her volunteer and community outreach work to help rebuild her hometown of Monson, MA after last year’s devastating tornados.
“We are incredibly proud of Karen and the hard work and time she’s dedicated to helping the residents and town of Monson,” said Dan Breault, Executive Vice President and Regional Director of RE/MAX of New England. “She’s devoted countless hours to helping Monson residents rebuild their lives and she absolutely demonstrates the characteristics of an unsung heroine.”
After the unexpected tornados struck Western Massachusetts at the start of June 2011, Karen immediately formed a volunteer group that began passing out flyers with the contacts of local resources that people could turn to. She also started speaking with residents about their unmet needs and matched residents up with local volunteers that could help them.
Soon after, she became the liaison between government agencies, such as FEMA that were helping with local relief efforts, and the residents of Monson. Karen now has a foundation formed called Street Angels that has volunteers who walk from house to house sharing new and pertinent town information, helps neighbors in need, and now also helps towns across the country that have recently been hit by natural disasters.
“The tornados affected 255 families in Monson and more than 90 people lost their homes. It was very apparent after the storms that there were many people seeking information and no one knew who to turn to,” said Karen King. “We have a very small town and I knew that I needed to help my community find the necessary resources to help rebuild their lives.”
Karen will be honored with her Unsung Heroine award at the 2012 Unsung Heroines Ceremony on Wednesday, May 16th at the Massachusetts State House.
She’s also recently been recognized as Citizen of the Year by the Quaboag Hills Chamber of Commerce and was recognized with the Good Neighbor Award by the Massachusetts Association of Realtors. For more information about Street Angels please visit www.streetangel.org.
On June 1st, the town of Monson, MA was devastated by an unexpected tornado that destroyed 240 homes and left the rest of the town heavily impacted. The town’s only supermarket was ruined, and the library suffered heavy damages as well. As Monson started to rebuild, Karen King, Agent at RE/MAX Prestige in Wilbraham, MA, instantly jumped into action and led 800 volunteers in bringing relief to the community. She worked with both FEMA and MEMA relief agencies closely to facilitate monetary assistance for the community. Karen also graciously opened her home to 13 people left homeless, who lived with her for three weeks. Karen gained the help of her fellow RE/MAX offices, who were generous enough to bring truckload after truckload of food, water, Gatorade, and more to the local church, which provided 2,500 meals a day.
She also took the initiative to call sellers whose homes were listed for sale and were also vacant, and solicit their help. “No one was looking to move to Monson after the tornado so I asked if they could be so kind to take their home off the market and rent to a family in need.” She was then able to successfully move fifteen families into a home for temporary shelter. She worked with their insurance companies, and enlisted the help of more volunteers to fill these homes with furniture, food, and clothes. Karen’s office donated the paper and printing to make posters that her “Street Angels” brought door-to-door to increase awareness of the help and supplies that were needed for the affected families.
Karen has already spent over 400 hours since June on a strictly volunteer basis to give as much as she can to those who need it. As a leading coordinator in the Monson Tornado Relief Efforts, Karen is still helping a great number of families support themselves. Anyone looking to help can donate to the Monson Savings Bank, at www.monsonsavings.com or to ABMen. ABMen is a ministry group, cutting wood of the fallen forestry to pick up the town’s appearance and move the trees out of many parking lots. ABMen donations can be made to VT/NH ABMen Disaster Relief c/o Karen King 11 Longview Drive Monson, MA 01057.
Karen was awarded the prestigious Realtor of the Year for 2008 by the Realtor Association of Pioneer Valley. The Karen King Realty Group has been licensed since 1985, and averages 100 homes sold each year, the #1 team in the Greater Springfield Area.
If you would like to contact Karen, she can be reached at: