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Honors and Awards

UMass Dining’s Pamela Adams Receives Commonwealth Heroine Award for Assisting Dozens of Refugees and Immigrants

Pamela Adams
Pamela Adams

Pamela Adams, director of bakery operations and executive pastry chef for UMass Dining, received a Commonwealth Heroine award from the Massachusetts Commission on the Status of Women for her role in feeding and finding employment for dozens of refugees and immigrants in Greenfield.

Adams was one of 125 Commonwealth Heroines to be honored in the State House’s Gardner Room on June 14.

“I honestly don’t feel like I’m the hero,” Adams told the Greenfield Recorder for an article detailing her reception of the award. “The work I do is simply paying it forward. The work that I do is not for recognition. The work that I do is purely from my heart.”

Adams’ parents, who served as missionaries, brought her to Haiti when she was only 6 months old. She said she was raised in Haiti, going back to the U.S. from time to time, until she was 16 years old. She later returned to Haiti to open a bakery and take care of family friends.

The article notes that “having prepared and donated countless meals for migrants being housed in Greenfield and assisted more than 25 immigrants and refugees with securing jobs” at UMass Amherst, “Adams said her work was always done out of love, never for recognition.”

“We have jobs that need to be filled, and there aren’t a lot of people around to do the jobs,” she says. “So if I can bring people to work, it’s a win-win for the community and the people.”

The complete article detailing Adams work and the award can be found on the Recorder website here. Adams was also profiled on WHMP radio’s “Representative Heroes” podcast, which can be heard here.