EPWA Current News
  • Monday, January 20, 2014 5:58 PM | Jo Ann Bertrand (Administrator)
    When: March 14-16
    What is it? A women's weekend in downtown St. Joseph, stay tuned to St Joseph Today ( for more information!
  • Monday, January 20, 2014 5:01 PM | Jo Ann Bertrand (Administrator)
    In February, St. Joseph heats up for the 10th Annual Magical Ice Fest. Events include certified Individual and Team competitions, a Fire & Ice Kickoff Display as well as reception with live music, Ice Wars, Snow Biz Scavenger Hunt, and much more!

    Details can be found at
  • Monday, January 20, 2014 5:00 PM | Jo Ann Bertrand (Administrator)

     Lake Bluff Park.

    There is still time to take in our Lights on the Bluff. The lighted display located in Lake Bluff Park will remain turned on through Saturday, February 15. For more information about the lights, contact 269-983-5541.

  • Thursday, January 02, 2014 6:00 AM | Jo Ann Bertrand (Administrator)
    Where: Cornerstone Alliance Office, 38 W. Wall St, Benton Harbor, MI 49022
    When: Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9:00am - 1:00pm, beginning February 11, 2014
    POWER is an 11-week entrepreneurship training program intended to assist low to moderate income, female entrepreneurs residing in Berrien, Cass and Van Buren Counties. POWER participants will meet twice a week at the Cornerstone Alliance offices at 38 W. Wall Street, Benton Harbor, MI from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm where they will learn from community business subject-matter experts best practices and the essential tools needed to make their entrepreneurial ventures successful.

    Applications are due JANUARY 8, 2014 and are available on Cornerstone Alliance website - - or 
    At Cornerstone Alliance Offices-38 W. Wall Street, Benton Harbor, MI
    Contacting Dubelsa Mata at 269.925.6100 or via email at

    Applications will be reviewed and interviews will be conducted the week of January 21, 2014. Realize the POWER resides in you and fuel your entrepreneurial spirit. APPLY TODAY!
  • Thursday, January 02, 2014 5:10 AM | Jo Ann Bertrand (Administrator)



    There are 62 food banks that the United Way coordinates We will donate to the one that is most in need. 

  • Thursday, January 02, 2014 5:00 AM | Jo Ann Bertrand (Administrator)
    What kind of Michigan do you want in the future?

    Consider where we are today... In some ways, our state is on the mend from the depths of the Great Recession. More people are working. Michi- gan’s population inched upward after a long slide. “Pure Michigan” images have boosted tourism. Yet our largest city, Detroit, is in bankruptcy. Many other communities face deep financial, social, and educational concerns. And, for many, prosperity remains only a distant hope.

    Your Voice Matters! Really!

    This statewide Community Conversation – a public agenda-setting dia- logue including thousands of diverse Michigan residents through spring 2014. The goal: citizen-driven input on the 2014 Michigan elections. The purpose of the conversation is not to promote any particular candidate from any particular party. Instead, the goal is to identify and amplify the public’s priorities in all campaigns and in the state capitol after the elec- tion. We’re aiming to help set the public’s agenda for the 2014 campaign. This is a project of The Center for Michigan, a nonprofit and nonpartisan organization. Reports from previous Community Conversations provided public momentum for state leaders to:

    *Approve the nation’s largest expansion of public preschool.

    *Approve deeper state investment in the “Pure Michigan” marketing cam- paign.

    *Reform state business taxes.
    *Institute reforms to save taxpayers $250 million in state prison costs.

    COMMUNITY CONVERSATION - TUESDAY, JANUARY 21 5:30-7 PM - WMU AT LMC -  - email Joan Walter at to reserve your seat

  • Wednesday, November 06, 2013 6:34 AM | Jo Ann Bertrand (Administrator)

    Join us for our annual Luminary Festival! Stroll through the beautiful candle-lit streets as 1,000 luminaries light your way in downtown St. Joseph. This glowing festival is sponsored by Cook Nuclear Plant/Indiana Michigan Power.

    Shops will be open late to entice you with wonderful gift ideas and festive holiday decor - many merchants will provide refreshments.  

  • Tuesday, October 22, 2013 6:29 AM | Jo Ann Bertrand (Administrator)

    A clear view of resource allocation, right people doing the right things in the right order, to see if adjustments, added staff or outsourcing can strengthen core competencies and help reach your goals. 

    Topics:  logical hiring practices, training & development, measuring peak performance, motivation, careful use of outside resources, plus more effective delegation to better manage your time.

    Oct 30, 2013 - 6:30pm - 8:30pm EDT

    Lincoln Township Library - 2099 John Beers Road - StevensvilleMI 49127

    Leader – Alice Blair Ford retired from Whirlpool Corporation after 29 years in human resources, continuing education, and product research and development. She has taught middle school and adult ed classes, and currently focuses on grant writing.  Alice holds a BS in Home Economics from Barry University, MS in Textiles and Clothing from Florida State University, and MA in Management from Nazareth College.

    Leader – Judee Hopwood is president and owner of Williamson Employment Services, Inc.  She oversees operations, human resources, employment law compliance, and training and development. Judee is a member of the Human Resource Council of Southwest Michigan and the American Staffing Association.  She holds an MBA from Western Michigan.

  • Sunday, October 06, 2013 8:48 AM | Jo Ann Bertrand (Administrator)
    Tomeka Kinne is at the bank's location at 2608 Niles Road, St., Joseph, and Chris Brule is at the downtown location, 811 Ship St. Both will be responsible for market retention and business development.
    Kinne has more than 16 years of banking experience in Southwest Michigan. She is affiliated with Lakeshore Rotary Club, a board member of Lakeshore Chamber of Commerce and a member of Cornerstone Chamber of Commerce.
    Brule has more than 35 years of banking experience, performing many functions such as teller, vault teller, credit department supervisor, loan documentation processor and customer service representative. She is a board member of the Berrien/VanBuren County American Red Cross and a member of the Executive Professional Women's Association.
  • Sunday, October 06, 2013 8:45 AM | Jo Ann Bertrand (Administrator)
    New venture welcomes newcomers - - - After 30 years as a broadcaster in Arizona and Colorado, Berrien County native Paul Orlando has returned to Benton Harbor to start a new business venture, The HomeTown Welcome Program of Southwest Michigan.
    The business will send personalized, full-color mailers welcoming newcomers to our community. Participating businesses will be able to reach an average of 290 families at a time when they are likely to need particular goods and services and are not likely to know what is available to them. "Having just moved myself, I can tell you that there are lots of services that you need and you really don't know where to turn," said Orlando. "Luckily, I met Bob Jones, from the Small Business & Technology Development Center when I was setting up the business. The SBTDC was a big help to me."
    The HomeTown Welcome Program is a franchise business based in Sturgis and currently operating in more than 400 markets nationwide. Local distribution is scheduled to begin in December. To learn more, contact Orlando by email,, or call the main office at 269-651-7341.
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