Heartworks could not exist if it were not for the hundreds of women we call “Heartworkers” who are committed to our purpose and give of themselves wholeheartedly. Heartworkers come to meetings, fundraisers and bring hope and kindness in many ways to families who need it.

Staff and Advisory Council

Megan McDowell, MSW, LPC

Megan McDowell, MSW, LPC

Founder & Chief Visionary Officer

"Heartworks allows me to pay forward, everyday, the hope that was given to my sister’s family in 2001. It has expanded my capacity for compassion and helps to keep me out of the static of everyday life in a beautiful, small, east coast town."

Betsy Bacot

Betsy Bacot

Advisory Council & Photographer

Heartworks came into my life at just the right time. I immediately felt it was a "perfect fit" - a way to work with wonderful like-minded women to give to and help local families in crisis. It also taught me the importance of learning to receive and to always "go to gratitude". Also, I have been honored to work with and get to know the amazing local veterans and to serve as photographer for Heartworks for so many years.

Melissa Pappolla

Melissa Pappolla

Family & Communications Coordinator

"Heartworks came into my life when I was searching for a bigger purpose and for a way to give back. I came to a meeting to learn more and see if they were able to help a family close to me that was struggling, but I kept coming back because it lit a light in my heart I didn’t know was out. I learn more about myself every day through Heartworks and that helps me stay open and ready to give and to receive."

Kate Rizzo

Kate Rizzo

Advisory Council

"In the first minutes of my very first Heartworks meeting I thought ‘where has this been all my life?’ In the days, months, and years that have followed I’ve had an overwhelming sense of gratitude for what Heartworks has given me. It’s a place where you can be yourself and feed your soul, all while helping others. I’ve learned that whether you’re giving or receiving, we’re all in this together, and that’s truly what it’s all about.

Beth Lebel

Beth Lebel

Advisory Counicl

"Heartworks is a central part of my life that keeps me grounded and lifts me up all at the same time. I feel blessed to the core to be able to share this journey with such a lovely & genuine group of women. It is also my honor to help lead the high school young ladies of Jr. Heartworks and guide them in keeping balance in their lives and focus on our mission of giving with an open heart, receiving with grace & being grateful."

Marianne Rivello

Marianne Rivello

Advisory Council

"Heartworks has given me the opportunity to connect with a community that has created balance in my life. The energy exchanged by helping families is the same energy that helps me see myself more clearly. With grace and gratitude."

Kelly Islinger

Kelly Islinger

Advisory Council

After attending my first Heartworks meeting, I knew I wanted to be an engaged member of this group. I have learned the expansiveness of the word “kindness” and the positive impact that acts big and small can have on people in my community who are suffering. The sisterhood of this group has changed my life and encouraged me to live with gratitude while encouraging me towards more action. And through Junior Heartworks, my three daughters have shared in this journey which is a true blessing.

Diane Corcoran

Diane Corcoran

Advisory Council

I was drawn to Heartworks out of curiosity. The positivity and kindness that is so ingrained in its culture, lead me to learn more. Attending that first meeting was so enlightening and comforting for me, all others present, & those families receiving, I knew I had become a part of something amazing. Megan has a gift of taking life and breaking it down to simple concepts that run deep and are essential for the greater good. One can listen to her for hours as her ability to "reach" each individual on their own level, despite the number in the room is beyond powerful. Heartworks sharing the simplest act of kindness to a gift of great significance, transforms those that receive and especially those that give. It is this exchange, between us all, that can overcome all the adversity that life can bring forth. I value this time with the AC members, Megan, our Vets and grateful we have such a caring community of Heartworkers that make this a reality.

Sheila Fredericks

Sheila Fredericks

Advisory Council

I am so grateful to the Universe for making it possible for me to be a part of this great organization. I am aware, from my own experience, what it means to have angels all around while going through a tragedy. My husband lost his battle when our children were small. The love and support from family, friends and neighbors are what got me through each day. It gives me peace to know that I am part of a movement that realizes just how important it is to be there for others who face difficult times.

Patty McSally

Patty McSally

Advisory Council
Nesa Rossi

Nesa Rossi

Advisory Council

"Heartworks has helped me learn the importance of looking at oneself and understanding that trust and thankfulness are the keys to living a peaceful life in a state of gratitude. It has brought purpose to my life outside of my family. I feel blessed to be part of such an incredible organization."

Maryanne Farrell

Maryanne Farrell

Advisory Council

"Heartworks gives me the opportunity to pay forward all the acts of kindness that were shown to my children and I after September 11, 2001. I will be eternally grateful for everything that was done for us, and Heartworks gives me the chance to give back to families going through the same experience of grief and illness. I have personally learned how powerful even the smallest gesture of kindness can be for families, and I am indebted to Heartworks for giving me the opportunity to do this on a daily basis."

and always Mary Kapp

and always Mary Kapp

Advising us from Heaven

“Heartworks helps me to keep my heart open. I love being part of a group made up of women who exercise gratitude, giving, and receiving and Heartworks allows me to share kindness that I have also received. I am always encouraged to nurture my family, my spirituality, myself, and my friendships."

Board of Directors

Lois Gagnon
Gail Granowitz
Clara Heffernan
Aimee Hunnewell
Carolyn Rooney

Jessica Walker
Kathy Watrous