HATHORNE— Superintendent-Director Heidi Riccio Ed.D. is pleased to share the Essex Tech community raised approximately $16,200 to support the Catherine Larkin Memorial Cottage project at the remote Homecoming Gala on Friday.
On Friday, Dec. 18, 144 people attended the second annual Homecoming Gala, which was held virtually. Those who attended also had the option to purchase a dinner prepared by Essex Tech students and pick it up prior to the start of the remote event earlier in the day on Friday.
Ticket sales netted $4,434.45 to support the Larkin Cottage project, and an additional $11,780 was raised through an online auction tied to the gala featuring items created by students in Essex Tech’s technical programs and direct donations.
“We are so thankful to everyone who joined us on Friday for the gala,” Superintendent Riccio said. “The Catherine Larkin Memorial Cottage project is near and dear to the hearts of our many in our school community, and will be a tremendous resource to students, staff, alumni and the community once it is completed. This was the second year we’ve held the gala, and it was special to celebrate this initiative with so many new and old friends remotely.”
At the gala, Brian Cranney was recognized as the 2020 Larkin Lifetime Achievement Award recipient. The award recognizes members of the Essex Tech community and its past iterations, including Essex Agricultural and Technical High School, North Shore Technical High School and Peabody Vocational School, who have demonstrated a commitment to and achievement within the local vocational and/or agricultural industries.
Cranney is the president of Cranney Home Services, which provides plumbing, heating, cooling and electrical services to residential homes and businesses. His company is one of over 80 working with Essex Tech students for their co-op program, and he currently employs many Essex Tech alumni.
In 2005, Cranney helped found the electrical program at the former North Shore Tech and continues to support Essex North Shore as a member of the Electrical Program, General Advisory Committees, and the Essex Tech Foundation. He was a building committee member during the merger of Essex Agricultural and North Shore Technical School and instrumental in the opening of the plumbing and HVAC-R programs.
Sen. Joan B. Lovely gave the opening remarks for the Gala, and Principal Shannon Donnelly also gave a tribute to Rep. Ted Speliotis at the event for his support of the Larkin Cottage project, in addition to his longtime support of Essex Tech.
“As one of the most effective legislators in the House, Rep. Speliotis ensured that every student on the North Shore would have access to high quality agricultural and vocational education through the creation of a new state of the art facility,” Principal Donnelly said. “While working on this legislation, Rep. Speliotis always kept cognizant of the rich history of the Essex Agricultural School, never letting it be lost or forgotten. We sincerely thank you, Rep. Speliotis, for your commitment to all of the students in the Commonwealth who have directly benefited from your support of Agricultural and Career Technical Education.”
About the Catherine Larkin Memorial Cottage Project
Lt. Catherine Larkin was an alumni of the Essex County Agricultural School homemaking program and World War II nurse who died in a plane crash in 1945. The Larkin Memorial Cottage, currently being rebuilt into a multi-use facility, including a historical museum, service kitchen, office space, an exhibit hall, a learning lab and function space, was originally built in 1950 and named after Larkin.
Students from various disciplines at the school are working on the Larkin Memorial Cottage building project, including students studying carpentry, masonry, electrical, plumbing, construction craft labor, landscaping, and natural resources.
To learn more about the Larkin Memorial Cottage project and/or to donate, click here.