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Frankford Business and Professsional Association: Taking Care of Your Business


Heather Hanowitz, PIDC, addresses the April 2016 meeting of the FBPA

Bob and I have been to the last two meetings of the Frankford Business and Professional Association (FBPA) and I have been duly impressed with the content and resources of the bi-monthly programs. This is an organization that is serious about business and yours in particular! The FBPA meets bimonthly at Aria Frankford and I expect they need to be thinking about larger space because the meetings are overflowing. Today’s economy is so volatile that I’m convinced we have to be able to create our own jobs and our children will, too! Thus, connecting with others and learning what resources are out there is critical to your success. The FBPA is “a membership-based coalition of stakeholders that strive to stimulate economic development and provide support to the local business community of Frankford”.1 Members are business owners, entrepreneurs (a growing group), community organizations (Keep the Faith in Frankford), the service industry, religious leaders and neighborhood residents. That’s quite a coalition! You fit in this group!

April’s meeting agenda:

  • A presentation by Heather Hanowitz, Vice President, Market Manager, Commercial Business for the Philadelphia Industrial Development Corporation, (PIDC), whose motto is “Driving growth to every corner of Philadelphia”. Well, we have a nice long stretch of avenue and we’re ready. There are workshops for legacy businesses – family businesses passing on to the next generation and working capital and equipment financing monies at relatively low interest rates – 6.25%. In 2014, PIDC reports that they financed area businesses with over $1 billion.
  • Alice G. Dungee-James, MCA, Assistant Director of the Office of Economic Opportunity (OEO) in Philadelphia explained how to do business with the City through contracts and bids for work and selling your goods and services. Do you know what the city spends and all the different types of materials and services they buy? There’s a good chance the city needs what you have and you want a piece of that pie!! To get started, here’s the link – and if you’re a woman, a minority or disabled, there is no registration fee. City Registration Process! Once you’re certified and registered, the City’s department refers to the this list for procurement purposes. Ms. Dungee-James was very informative and her contact information is on the registration link if you need help. Alice also gave us two tips:
    • Here’s the list of agencies that will certify your business. It pays to shop around, it was mentioned New Jersey charges $100.00
    • It’s important to know your NAICS code for your industry because procurement (buying) orders are based on that code. It’s a good idea to put that code on your business cards.
  • We also heard from Jonathan Synder, Senior Manager, Commercial Corridor regarding the Storefront Improvement Program. Jonathan was “pitch hitting” for Giana Lawrence who had a scheduling conflict. I was really impressed with the transformation of some of these buildings. The program will reimburse you up 50% for exterior improvements that you make up to $10,000 for a store front and $15,000 for multiple addresses or a corner store. Your property must be between 1200 – 3100 Frankford Ave. and 4000-5300 Frankford Ave. There is also an InStore Program that is a “loan forgiveness” plan loaning you the money for equipment and supplies to expand your existing business or adding another location. Their latest online application states 4000-5300 Frankford Avenue businesses are eligible. 6200-8500 Frankford Avenue in Mayfair is eligible, too, if you would like to pass that on. Several Avenue businesses have taken advantage of this program. Once you’ve decided to apply, you’re assigned a Relationship Manager who will walk you through the process. If you want to take advantage of these programs, don’t do any work until you’ve been approved for it. Giana’s contact information is on the website.
  • The new 15th Police District Captain, Anthony Luca, along with Officer Matt Crosson, Community Relations, and Officer Sean Kennelly, who just received a PDAC award for his work solving crimes with a focus on burglaries. There was much discussion regarding loitering that businesses much cope with, recent robberies at fast food restaurants. The Captain responded that if 911 calls are not getting responses after several calls, ask for a supervisor. I know that the city establishes a priority response system and what you are calling about might not demand the quickest response. So you’ll have to use your judgement. But this is good to know for the times that require immediate response and it’s not happening.
  • The FBPA is hosting a Spring Networking Mixer on May 19, 5:30 – 7:30 PM at the Historical Society of Frankford. For more information , contact Ileana Garcia at
  • There will also be a 3 mile fun run fundraiser in October to benefit the Northeast Frankford Boys and Girls Club and avenue businesses. More details will be forthcoming.

These are terrific ways to increase your business and your profits. Wouldn’t it be better for you to be there in person hearing about it? Membership is $60 annually and we would love to see join!





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EPIC Stakeholders Says Goodbye

The last EPIC Stakeholders meeting was on June 25th and it was more of a celebration and thanksgiving event than anything else.  The Culinary crew at 2nd Baptist once again served a tasty meal as Nafisah Lewis thank all those people and groups who had contributed to the success of the group.  She may have another career as an entertainment entrepreneur as she introduced one talented performer after another.

The Second Baptist Choir

The Second Baptist Choir

The spirit of the meeting will now continue under the sponsorship of Turning Points for Children and Representative Jason Dawkins.  The next meeting will be a Town Hall and Community Service Briefing on Thursday, July 30, 2015 5:30-7:30pm at McIlvain Recreation Center 5200 Penn Street.

On the agenda:

Presenters: State Representative Jason Dawkins

  1. State Legislation
  2. Movie Time
  3. Community Event- August 15th
  4. My Block to your Neighborhood


Dana Perella Acute Disease Control

Division of Disease Control

  1. Lyme Disease
  2. West Nile Virus

Christine McBennett, Mayor’s Commission on the Aging

  1. Apprise Program

Laura Ahramjian/ Planner/Urban Designer

  1. I-95 Construction and Updates
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EPIC Stakeholders September Meeting

The Northeast EPIC Stakeholders met on Thursday, September 25th at Second Baptist Church.

jamie fader

Jamie Fader

First off was Jamie Fader, Assistant Professor in the Criminal Justice Department at Temple.  She has been making the rounds of community meetings in Frankford, trying to get to know the neighborhood.  She explained that her interest is a study project that she will conduct in Frankford.  She wants to make contact with men aged 25 to 24 for an interview.  It is a long term study but participants will be compensated with a $50 gift card for the interview.  Referrals will be compensated with a $24 gift card.  If you are interested in participating in the study or would like more information, email her at or call 215.870.2821.

Captain McCloskey of the 15th police district, spoke to the group about the increase in violence over the last two months. There have been 6 homicides and 19 shootings during that time period.  He said the 30 new cops assigned to the district have already helped in reducing the job backlog.  He has used some of them to start up foot patrols again on Frankford Avenue in problem areas.  He also said that he needs and additional 15 to 20 new officers and some cars to put them in to get the crime situation district wide under control.

He brought up an interesting issue that he has encountered in his work.  Returning offenders have a very difficult time finding work even in the best of economic times and these are not the best.  Some of these people turn back to the drug trade because they have no other way of making money.  He proposes that it might make sense for the government to provide incentives for employers to hire these folks to give them a chance to stay straight.

Tony Burton gets the guys talking.

Tony Burton gets the guys talking.

Lt. Tony Burton, head of PSA1 in the 15th district, took the opportunity of finding a group of teenaged males in the audience to go one on one with some of them to get their questions about whatever was on their mind.    At first they were reluctant to talk but Burton got them going and talked about the issues related to the police and the youth of the community.

Once again the culinary crew of the Second Baptist provided a delicious dinner.

The next EPIC meeting will be on Thursday October 30th at Second Baptist Church at 1801 Meadow Street.

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EPIC Stakeholders Talks Fitness

The Northeast EPIC Stakeholders meeting at Second Baptist Church on April 24th was all about fitness.

The meeting was opened by Nafisah Lewis, the EPIC Coordinator, who shared some of her experience in the fitness area.  Kelly Smith gave a presentation on HealthXtensions.  Miss Joyce discussed vitamins and supplements.  Lewis Ford, a personal trainer, demonstrated some easy to do workouts.  Robert Spolentini, Harriet Webb and Yves Marie De’Sir were also on the agenda.epic

The next Northeast EPIC Stakeholders meeting will be on May 29th at 5:30PM at Second Baptist Church at 1801 Meadow St.

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Week in Review April 26, 2014

Saturday was the grand opening of the Destination Frankford art gallery.  There was a great crowd, music and food at the block party.

Tuesday we stopped by the Frankford Business and Professional Association meeting.  Sorry to have missed most of the meeting but did get a pictures of these folks about to go back to work.

Thursday there were three important meetings.  The EPIC stakeholders gathering was focussed on fitness and got a lot of interest from those attending.  The PSA1 meeting was saved by Lt. Burton who arrived late due to official duties getting in the way.  He remained until 8:30 PM answering questions.  The Northeast Frankford Boys and Girls club met again to discuss the state of the club and continue plans for fundraising.

Friday we distributed the Gazette in print.  We have one new spot at Simpson Playground for those in Northwood.  You can find it on the table in the lobby.

Some pictures below of the events of the week.