Henry Southwick Maxfield Jr. Awarded Granite State Legacy Award 2016
Posted by DAVE SOLOMON — June 21, 2016
Article Originally Published in the New Hampshire Union Leader
WOLFEBORO, NH - Henry Southwick Maxfield Jr. has devoted so much time, energy and money to non-profits in the Lakes Region that he truly lives out the promise of the “We Care” program he launched in 1999 to celebrate the 54th anniversary of the Lakes Region real estate firm established by his father.
Maxfield is among those being honored this year with the 2016 Granite State Legacy Award, which celebrates the accomplishments of the state’s most distinguished citizens who have given the most to New Hampshire through business, philanthropy, politics and career.
In 16 years, from 1999 through 2015, the “We Care” program has raised more than $787,159 for more than 275 local charities, with agents contributing 2 percent from their commissions at real estate closings.
“We Care” was meant to be a one-year charitable initiative in conjunction with the company’s anniversary, but it took on a life of its own, under the careful stewardship of “Chip” Maxfield and his wife, Tina.
The program became such a significant force for good that it has remained a vital part of the company and community.
“Every year since 1999, the agents have voted to continue,” even in the two years of the Great Recession, when contributions were temporarily reduced to 1 percent of commissions, Maxfield said.
“We have personally seen how these contributions have enriched and improved the quality of life for area residents,” said Maxfield agent Steve Bush. “Maxfield Real Estate has three offices, in Alton, Center Harbor and Wolfeboro, and we have found it very rewarding to see how these donations have made a difference in each town.”
Groups that have benefited from the program over the years include the Appalachian Mountain Teen Project, the Central New Hampshire VNA Hospice, the Friends of Abenaki Ski Area, the Great Waters Music Festival, the Lakes Region Conservation Trust, the Lake Wentworth Foundation, the Lakes Region Humane Society, Life Ministries Food Pantry, the New Hampshire Preservation Alliance and many others.
Though he had a three-year battle with Lyme disease eight years ago, and a diagnosis of Parkinson’s Disease four years ago, Maxfield’s dedication, guidance, patience and business savvy allowed Maxfield Real Estate to survive the Great Recession and continue to thrive.
At 65, he still shows up for work every day, and maintains a challenging schedule of volunteer activities, including the revitalization of the Abenaki Ski Area in Wolfeboro. Thanks in large part to his work as chairman of the fundraising committee, Friends of Abenaki raised the money needed for construction of a new four-season lodge which opened in December at the community-centered slope.
“It was a $650,000 project and we brought to the table more than half of that,” he said.
Over the years, Maxfield has also been active in the national Realtor organization, concentrating on non-profit giving within the Realtor community and on legal issues to the benefit of the profession.
He has also been an advocate for the business community in Wolfeboro, and takes great pride in his efforts to improve parking, always at a premium on Main Street in the lakefront community.
“It wasn’t the sexiest project, but while serving on the parking committee of the Chamber of Commerce it took us three to five years to find a piece of land that was near downtown and could handle more than 50 cars,” he said. “I’m really quite proud of that, because most of the parking spaces in the downtown were taken up by employees and owners of the businesses.”