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    Saturday, September 30, 2023

    The Buzz: Community foundation reaches $1 million plateau for scholarships

    Ruiwen Lin
    Adelina Chocho
    Kate Landis

    The Community Foundation of Eastern Connecticut has awarded over $1 million in scholarships to 287 students for the upcoming academic year. Students from throughout eastern Connecticut were recognized with one-time and multi-year awards ranging from $1,000 to $32,000.

    The foundation, in partnership with local nonprofits and school systems, identifies and supports a variety of organizations which benefit vulnerable youth. Funding for after-school programs, mentoring, and college and career readiness programs helps prepare eastern Connecticut young people for the future.

    The foundation’s donors have established 131 scholarship funds, awarding over $10.8 million to more than 3,375 students since 1983.

    Adelina Chocho of Niantic, a 2023 graduate of East Lyme High School who is attending Quinnipiac University to study computer science. She is a 4-year recipient of the Marjory B. & Laurence P. "Jim" Smith Scholarship.

    Ruiwen Lin of Norwich, a rising junior studying molecular biology at the University of Connecticut/Storrs. He is the recipient of the Beatrice McEwen Scholarship.

    Kate Landis of Brooklyn, a 2023 graduate of Marianapolis Preparatory School in Thompson who is attending Colorado State University to study forestry/forest management. She is the recipient of the Jake T. Watson Memorial Scholarship.

    For a full list of scholarship recipients, visit the foundation website at https://cfect.org/ and look for 2023 Scholarship Recipients.

    Stephanie Gelinas has joined Chelsea Groton Financial Services as an associate financial adviser and Infinex Investments adviser. In this role, Stephanie will aid clients in an array of categories including wealth management, investments, insurance, and retirement planning.

    Stephanie’s career first began as a teller at Wells Fargo and later progressed to lead roles before transitioning to a financial associate position at First Bancorp. Stephanie continued her development as a client service associate at Professional Planning Group of New England. She has acquired her Series 7, Series 66, Life Insurance, and Accident/Health licenses.

    Stephanie, a Westerly resident, enjoys hiking, reading, running, biking, and attending her son’s sports games.

    Roxanna Booth has joined Operation Fuel as its chief advancement and communications officer.

    Her responsibilities include overseeing fundraising, philanthropic support, communications, public relations, marketing and social media.

    Booth, who lives in West Hartford, is a graduate of Wheaton College in Norton, Mass. She most recently served as chief philanthropy officer and co-executive director of Hartford Youth Scholars.

    The Chamber of Commerce of Eastern Connecticut will hold a Business After Hours event at High Hopes Therapeutic Riding, 36 Town Woods Road in Old Lyme, from 5-7 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 13.

    Cost for members is $15, nonmembers $25.

    This event will feature complimentary hors d'oeuvres and beverages at the landscape and horse farm. To register, visit https://chamberect.com/.

    The chamber will also sponsor a Mystic & New London Clean Up Day from 9 to noon Friday Sept. 15, at Mystic Marriott: Helmsman Restaurant, 625 North Road, Groton.

    Revolution Wind by Orsted & Eversource are partnering with the Mystic and the ECT chambers on the event, which will start with breakfast from 9 to 9:45 a.m. followed by cleanup from 10 to noon.

    Young Professionals of Eastern CT will host its next YPsocial at Chapter One, 32 W. Main St., Mystic, from 5 to 7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 28.

    This is free for members, $15 for nonmembers.

    This year’s sponsors are Homestead Funding Corp. and Resolute Dental Partners.

    The Rotary Clubs of Norwich will celebrate Cultural Diversity Night at Chelsea Parade from 5 to 8 p.m. Monday, Sept. 18.

    This outdoor family event with free entertainment will highlight area restaurants, cultural music, art and dance bringing together a diverse community of the many cultures that represent the Norwich area.

    Food tasting is $10 per person, with kids under 6 free.

    The Greater Norwich Area Chamber of Commerce (https://www.norwichchamber.com/) will host GNACC Music at the Vineyard from 5 to 9 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 14, at Preston Ridge Vineyard, 100 Miller Road, Norwich.

    Bring chairs or blankets and enjoy the surroundings while playing outdoor games, or visiting on-site food trucks from Brick & Basil Wood Fired Pizza and Uncle D's Blazin' BBQ.

    Tickets are $40 in advance and include a glass of wine or beer ($50 at the door). A portion of ticket proceeds will go to Reliance Health.

    Whiskey Boulevard plays tunes from 6-9.

    Contact Angela Adams at (860) 887-1647 for information or email angelaadams@norwichchamber.com.

    The Chamber of Commerce of Eastern Connecticut (www.ChamberECT.com) is putting the finishing touches on its Innovation/co-Working Center, which will be ready for occupancy this month.

    The center will act as incubator space for start-ups, and as additional space for existing businesses wishing to establish a satellite location in the heart of the region’s business center at 92 Eugene O’Neill Drive, New London.

    Features include office space for rent, workstations in an open and collaborative setting, administrative support, 5G fiber optic powered by Comcast Business, WiFi, a kitchen facility with all appliances, a private wellness room, handicapped access, two conference rooms, a large outdoor patio, free onsite parking, and electric charging stations.

    The center is in a federally recognized Enterprise and Opportunity Zone with significant development nearby providing a vibrant atmosphere. The center is also intended to be a resource and provide a forum for thought leadership related to the Blue Economy and other growth industries.

    In addition, the Innovation/co-Working Center will be home to the chamber’s Entrepreneur Academy, an eight-week program to help entrepreneurs move from idea to profitable business with guidance from experts. The center also will be home to the Chamber’s 30-year Leadership Program and other regional activities.

    For lease terms and more information, contact the chamber at (860) 701-9113, info@ChamberECT.com, or Stan Mickus and Kim Benoit, Century 21 Shutters & Sails at (860) 460-8437.

    The Connecticut Department of Agriculture has announced the fourth and final easement of 79 acres to complete the preservation of Gallup Farm, a 498-acre historic dairy farm in Voluntown. This is the seventh farm protected this calendar year by the department, with a total of 543 acres preserved. Since the inception of the program in 1979 the state has protected 415 farms and 48,540 acres.

    Gallup Farm, now more than 350 years old, began with a land grant of more than 100 acres to Capt. John Gallup by the General Court of Connecticut for services rendered during the Pequot Indian War. Land was added over the years, reaching more than 1,000 acres during the 1930s when 600 acres were sold to the State of Connecticut to pay off a mortgage and build a new barn.

    Today it is owned by Byron Gallup, the 13th generation, who became a partner in the farm with his father Benjamin after graduating from UConn in 1972. It was always a long-term goal to ensure the farmland remained in production, and following the passing of his father in 2014, Byron set out to do just that.

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