Woodbridge businesswoman named Person of the Month

First Selectman Ellen Scalettar, right, recognizes Kate Brown as the October Woodbridge Person of the Month for October.

First Selectman Ellen Scalettar, right, recognizes Kate Brown as the October Woodbridge Person of the Month for October.

WOODBRIDGE >> First Selectman Ellen Scalettar recognized Kate Brown as the October Woodbridge Person of the Month.

Scalettar initiated the Woodbridge Person of the Month recognition program to spotlight the residents, volunteers and employees who go above and beyond the expected in their dedication and commitment to Woodbridge and its residents.

Brown, a personal trainer, owns Brown Fitness Training, 245 Amity Road. She organized the first Scarecrow Festival in 2013 to drive more traffic to the town’s retail shopping areas.

Brown encouraged local businesses to create business-themed scarecrows and place them at each storefront. She also encouraged businesses to offer special sales on the day of the event, and brought in family-friendly entertainment.

Noticing Brown’s commitment to the town, Scalettar asked if she would be interested in serving on the volunteer Economic Development Commission, which promotes the business community.

“Kate is a tireless advocate for Woodbridge businesses,” said Scalettar.

“She is a big thinker and spends a lot of her time ensuring the success of her neighboring businesses. Kate took her passion for promoting our local businesses, coupled it with my commitment to encourage more community events, and led the charge to create a monthlong (October) series of events. Her energy and enthusiasm are inspiring and our local businesses are better off because of Kate.”

Brown said she was honored to receive the recognition.

“It feels really good that the first selectman supports my efforts and is helping to promote local businesses. I’ve worked very hard on this project — with a lot of other people — because I recognize that what’s good for my neighbor’s business is good for my business.”

Thanks to Brown’s vision, the Scarecrow Festival has grown. Last year it was timed to coincide with the Woodbridge Road Race and Massaro Community Farm Family Fun Day. The organizations promoted each other’s events.

This year’s Scarecrow Festival is a monthlong celebration, Woodbridge Fallapalooza. Brown’s original vision has a broader focus: to promote economic development by highlighting the great things about Woodbridge, its history and farming heritage, the volunteer ethic and its recreational programs. There is still a business focus: Clothing stores will display their wares at a fashion show, restaurants will be highlighted during Restaurant Week, business representatives are invited to a happy hour.

To nominate a town employee, resident or volunteer who’s gone above and beyond expectations, contact Betsy Yagla at byagla@woodbridgect.org or 203-389-3403.