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    Sunday, June 23, 2024

    The Buzz: Always Home honors three for efforts on homelessness

    Amanda Arling. Photo submitted
    David Shulz, left, and Karen Stone, both to be honored Friday, April 19, by Always Home. Photo submitted
    Eastern Connecticut Association of Realtors officials present a check to the nonprofit Always Home. From left, Stacey Wyeth, Community Outreach Committee Chair; Molly Bruno, ECAR president; Kathryn Keller from Always Home; and Susy Hurlbert, executive director of ECAR..
    Scott Bassett
    Girl Scouts gather for a previous Maker Faire. Photo submitted

    Karen Stone, David Schulz, Amanda Arling and The Whaler’s Inn are to be honored Friday, April 19, at the Mystic Marriott Hotel & Spa for their contributions to the nonprofit agency Always Home.

    “Always Home started in 1998 as a small, community-driven initiative to address the local issue of homelessness,” said Tricia Cunningham, Always Home’s executive director. “Since then, we’ve grown to an agency serving over 300 eastern Connecticut families each year and are a designated responder in our region’s 2-1-1 Homeless Response system.”

    Cunningham credits the organization’s growth and success to those in the community who are committed to helping others when the need arises. “We are recognizing Karen, David, Amanda, and The Whaler’s Inn not just for their support of Always Home. Each, in their unique way, is contributing to building a healthier and more vibrant community for everyone.”

    She extended a special thanks to Heart of Gold Presenting Sponsor, The Whaler’s Inn and major Giving Heart Sponsors including Block Island Express, Groton Utilities, The Gramm & Battison Families, Mohegan Sun, Mystic Aquarium, Power Posse Productions and Shuta Productions for their support.

    For more information about the April 19 gala and to preview and register to bid on auction items, visit https://www.alwayshome.org/upcoming-events.

    Christine "King Marie" Marie will be the Connecticut Sun’s first ever in-house female DJ.

    King Marie began DJing in her hometown of Chicago in 2012 and has since held residencies in Los Angeles, New York, Boston, Chicago, and Manila, Philippines. In 2019, she decided to take more ground as an artist and expand her musical reach releasing her EP projects “The Prelude” and “222”.

    Her recent work includes an Emmy nomination for scoring the ‘21-‘22 season Chicago Bulls entertainment video with original music “Ready”; opening for Lil Nas X, Major Lazer, Kehlani, Little Simz, Smino, Big Freedia, and The Cool Kids; playing Bacardi stage at Lollapalooza; headlining Red Bull Music Festival; and performing the main stage at ComplexCon.

    The Connecticut Sun women’s basketball team's home opener will be against the Indiana Fever on Tuesday, May 14, and season tickets are on sale now at www.connecticutsun.com or call 1-877-SUN-TIXX.

    Non-profit Prevent Heal Thrive has named Scott Bassett of New London as honorary chair of its Spring Fundraiser at Langley’s on May 5 at 4:30 pm.

    Bassett, CPA, is a partner in the Hartford Office of RSM US LLP, and has served on the Connecticut GFOA Technical Standards Committee, and on the CSCPA's Governmental Accounting and Auditing Committee.

    He also is a member of the University of Connecticut’s Accounting Advisory Board and a Board member of the Greater New Haven Chamber of Commerce.

    Command Holdings, a Pequot Company, has announced that Aurene Martin, Tribal adviser and advocacy expert, will join the Board of Directors. Owned by the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation, Command Holdings provides professional services to the Department of Defense and other federal agencies.

    She joins the other members of the Command Holdings Board of Directors: Angelina Casanova (Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation), Richard Sebastian (Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation), Bryan Hayes (Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation), and Bryan Small (Alabama-Coushatta Tribe of Texas).

    Martin has served in prominent government roles, including as Acting Assistant Secretary of Indian Affairs and Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for the U.S. Department of the Interior and Senior Counsel to the U.S. Senate, Committee on Indian Affairs. Her extensive Tribal experience includes positions with the Oneida Nation of Wisconsin and as a consultant to multiple Native American governments. Currently, Martin is the founder and managing partner of Spirit Rock, LLC.

    Kevin A. Dillon plans to retire as executive director of the Connecticut Airport Authority effective January 2025.

    Dillon has achieved significant milestones for Bradley International Airport and the state’s general aviation airports. He was appointed as the executive director of the CAA in 2012, and he first achieved federal regulatory approval to transition Bradley International Airport and five of the state’s general aviation airports from the Connecticut Department of Transportation to the newly established quasi-public agency later in 2013.

    The CAA Board of Directors will identify a successor in the coming months to ensure a smooth transition following Dillon’s departure.

    Scient Federal Credit Union has been named one of the Best Places to Work in Connecticut in 2024 by the Hartford Business Journal. The annual list recognizes companies that have created exceptional work environments.

    "We are thrilled that our organization has been named one of the Best Places to Work in Connecticut, for the first time," said Chris Maynard, President and CEO at Scient Federal Credit Union.

    The final rankings were announced at an awards dinner on March 7 and was published in a special section of the Hartford Business Journal's March 18 issue. For more information on the Best Places to Work in Connecticut program, visit www.hartfordbusiness.com.

    Jill Vasington, benefits enrollment coordinator at the Norwich-based Senior Resources Agency on Aging, noted that April 15-19 is Boost Your Budget Week.

    During the week, seniors can visit the nonprofit’s offices at 19 Ohio Ave., Suite 2, Norwich, or call 860-213-5432 or 860-887-3561,or email jvasington@seniorresourcesec.org to learn how to get free benefits screenings.

    An estimated $30 billion in public and private benefits go unclaimed every year because older adults don’t know about them or how to apply. Programs can help seniors pay for food, medicine, rent, utilities, and more.

    The official School Indoor Air Quality Working Group , including co-chairs Rep. Jennifer Leeper and Sen. Julie Kushner as well as teachers, parents, HVAC contractors, public health professionals, and representatives from the Department of Administrative Services are seeking to pass new policies in the state’s schools to ensure the health of all.

    For instance, HVAC upgrades would be paid for through a grant program under the Connecticut Department of Administrative Services to reimburse school districts for the costs. A total of $450 million has been approved by the Connecticut General Assembly for fiscal years 2023-2025..

    April 9 was the 22nd anniversary of National Healthy Schools Day, which is coordinated by the Healthy Schools Network and includes national, state, and local activities. It is sponsored by the National Education Association, the American Federation of Teachers, the Connecticut Coalition for Healthy School Environments and other groups.

    On Saturday, May 18, Sound Community Services will host its 1st Annual End the Stigma: Mental Health Awareness 5K at Winthrop STEM Elementary Magnet School in New London. Check-in begins at 9 a.m., with kick-off of the 5K starting at 10.

    The month of May is Mental Health Awareness Month, so lace up your sneakers and walk or run to raise awareness and end the stigma. Register by visiting https://runsignup.com/Race/CT/NewLondon/EndtheStigmaMentalHealthAwareness5K. For more information, contact Nichole Burns at nichole.burns@soundct.org or call (860) 439-6400.

    Sponsors include Dime Bank, Epstein Becker Green, and Lawrence + Memorial Hospital; Backus Hospital, Bartol Heating and Cooling, Inc., Body of Needs, and OneDigital; Charter Oak Credit Union; Chelsea Groton Foundation, Cross Sound Ferry, CTComp, Elite Limousine, and Metro Vein Centers; A Beautiful Co. Builders & Remodelers, Conn RI Paper Supply, Co., CrossFit Playground, Mission Wellness LLC, and Rackliffe Lock and Safe, and Bushido Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Academy – Manchester, Town Hill Auto, and Trigger Finger Tactical LLC

    The Greater Norwich Area Chamber of Commerce will hold its Spring Healthcare Career Expo and Job Fair from 8 a.m. to noon Friday, April 26, at Holiday Inn Norwich, 10 Laura Blvd., Norwich

    The two-day event will connect healthcare employers with students (Grades 9-12) and adult job seekers. It will feature a morning session that connects about 150 students and healthcare employers to raise awareness and create excitement around the broad career opportunities available in healthcare. Students don't need to be enrolled in healthcare-related courses; they just need to be curious.

    In the afternoon, the event will transition to a healtcare job fair open to adult job seekers throughout the greater Norwich area and beyond. To learn more about the event, email angelaadams@Norwichchamber.com or call us at (860) 887-1647.

    The event is a partnership with Eastern CT Workforce Investment Board (EWIB); Eastern CT's Youth Healthcare Pipeline Initiative (YHPI); ReadyCT; Eastern Connecticut Healthcare Partnership, and the American Job Center.

    Barkin' Barley Craft Beer Taproom & Dog Park will hold a grand opening ribbon cutting ceremony at noon Saturday, April 27, at the new business located at 1528 Route 12, Gales Ferry.

    Craft beer and dogs are on tap at this new establishment where people will want to “paws” for pictures. For information, visit https://www.barkinbarley.com/.

    The Hispanic Alliance of Southeastern Connecticut will get one of five financial empowerment grants from Citizens Bank totaling $95,000.

    Citizens’ Connecticut funding is part of the bank’s broader commitment to provide $2.4 million to 137 nonprofits to expand financial empowerment programming in the communities it serves.

    For more information on Citizens’ enterprise-wide Sustainability and Impact strategy, go to https://www.citizensbank.com/community/corporate-responsibility.aspx

    The Eastern Connecticut Association of Realtors’ annual Community Benefit Raffle raised $23,000 for 23 nonprofits.

    The organizations included Always Home Inc.; Anchor of Hope, Care & Share of East Lyme; Catholic Charities; Diocese of Norwich; Children First Groton (working under Child & Family Agency as Fiduciary); Covenant Shelter of New London, Inc.; Girls on the Run of Southeastern CT; Habitat for Humanity of Eastern CT.

    The other groups are Legacy: A Residential Recovery Program for Women; Madonna Place, Inc.; New London Area Food Coalition, Inc.; Pawcatuck Neighborhood Center; Safe Futures, Inc.; St. Vincent De Paul Place, Norwich, Inc.; Thames Valley Council for Community Action, Inc. (TVCCA); The Brian Dagle Foundation; The ECHO Cancer.

    Also, Foundation, Inc.; The New London Community Meal Center; The Riverfront Children’s Center; The Shorelin Soup Kitchens & Pantries, Inc.; Thompson Ecumenical Empowerment Group, Inc. (TEEG); United Community & Family Services; United Way of Southeastern Connecticut.

    The United Music School as of June 30 will be solely run by The Ocean Community United Theater in Westerly. Previously, the school had been a partnership between The United and the Rhode Island Philharmonic Orchestra & Music School.

    Westerly's first nonprofit community music school, known initially as the RIPhil Music School @ The United, is now entering a new chapter of operation after three years of remarkable growth. The school now teaches over 400 students engaged in private lessons with a faculty of 24 at The United as well as at the Knickerbocker Music Center, where music school programs are held regularly. These include the open mic nights, known as “Youth on the Mic.”

    The faculty, led by Music School Director Tom Foley, will continue to provide world class music education for students. Classes, camps and other programming will similarly continue without interruption. RI Phil plans to continue serving the Westerly community through initiatives such as RI Phil Link Up in the Westerly Public Schools and seeks to explore further avenues for collaboration with The United that align with the missions of both entities.

    Carly Callahan, executive director of The United, said she was “iimmensely grateful” to The Rhode Island Philharmonic for helping launch and establish The United Music School. David Beauchesne, executive director of The Phil, called this milestone “a tremendous achievement for our organizations and the arts in this region."

    April is best known as National Earth Month and Tax Day, but Girl Scouts of Connecticut noted another celebration - National Inventor’s Month - by hosting the “Make the World a Better Place Maker Faire” on Saturday, April 13, at Sacred Heart University’s Discovery Science Center & Planetarium in Bridgeport.

    Specific activities included using Stanley Black and Decker tools to build bird feeders and candy dispensers, competing in a Frankentoy challenge, racing robots, firing rockets, designing airplanes, and creating Girl Scout uniforms of the future in the Recycle Runway Laboratory. For more information about STEM programs and activities offered by GSOFCT, visit www.gsofct.org.

    The Buzz is a weekly roundup of business news compiled by Business Editor Lee Howard. To get in The Buzz, email businessbriefs@theday.com. To easily access urls cited in print, go to www.theday.com and type “The Buzz” into the search bar.

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