Heather Ricciardi of Dennis is the new Vice Chair of the CIUW Board of Directors.
Born and raised on Cape Cod, Heather graduated from Dennis Yarmouth High School in 1991. She spent many years living and working in Florida as a National Account Representative for a medical distribution company. Additionally, she served on the Board of Directors for Professional Women in Health Care for 18 years.
Heather achieved much professional success, which afforded her the opportunity to move back to Cape Cod when she reconnected with high school sweetheart, Brian Ricciardi. The two got married in 2017 and Heather got involved with the United Way in 2021, putting her energy, vision and professional skills to work for the greater good!
At the Cape and Islands United Way, Heather chairs a committee called the “Business Circle,” which she is excited about launching and expanding deeper into small businesses on the Cape. “You need your smaller local donors too in order to be diversified and successful in the Cape Cod community,” she said.
What about the Cape & Islands United Way (CIUW) mission excites you?
All of it! That’s the reason I wanted to be a part of it. I want to help improve lives here on Cape Cod. Being able to help people is exciting. I am the type of person that would rather give than receive. I find so much joy in seeing the smiles on peoples’ faces. I also like working with a team to make it happen – the collaboration is rewarding.
Being able to help people is exciting. I am the type of person that would rather give than receive. I find so much joy in seeing the smiles on peoples’ faces.
Why did you become involved with the organization?
When I moved back to Cape Cod, it was important to me to get involved in the local community and to give back to the people here. So much had changed in the time that I had been away. My aunt and uncle were both involved with CIUW so I asked them about it. They encouraged me to learn more and I was impressed.
My little sister passed away 11 years ago and she used some of the services of the nonprofit
organizations that the CIUW supports. That was important to me to give back.
If the Cape & Islands United Way were to be on the cover of your favorite newspaper or magazine in five years, what would the story be about?
The story will be about how the CIUW has changed the landscape of Cape Cod and the Islands – how it’s affected housing, employment, food security -- and made a difference in the lives of families here for the better.
On a personal note, what’s something that most people don’t know about you? Or, what’s your favorite thing to do in your free time?
I was raised very different than how I live now, but I always remember where I came from. In my free time, I like to spend time with my family. My husband and I enjoy traveling. We really love Italy. We also have 3 cats and a dog!