Friday, August 29, 2008
Register Topics Editor
NEW HAVEN — No money. No deal.
After failing to offer any restitution, Ralph Cucciniello, 56, Friday was sentenced to 30 years, suspended after 20 served, for ripping off $500,000 from more than 60 immigrants who believed he was getting them "green cards" to normalize their status in the U.S.
Superior Court Judge Richard Damiani, after reading numerous letters from Cucciniello’s victims, said "I have concluded that Mr. Cucciniello’s entire life was a fraud ... he is an evil man."
Cucciniello, who falsely claimed to be a lawyer running an immigration clinic at Yale Law School, had access to the facility because of his relationship with Yale Professor Steven Duke, an expert in criminal law.
The swindler was a volunteer research assistant to Duke in connection with a organized crime case Duke was working on in his capacity as a private attorney.
Duke sat through the sentencing and declined to answer questions about Cucciniello afterwards, except to remark: "it’s a terrible situation."
The judge rejected a request Friday by attorney Ryan Barry, new counsel for Cucciniello, who asked for a stay of 90 days so he could work to help recover some of the monetary losses.
"You didn’t come here with one red cent," Damiani said to Cucciniello. "I’m not going to be one to play your game," particularly after Cucciniello had seven months to come up with $300,000 in order to qualify for a 20-year sentence, suspended after 12 years for the numerous larceny and racketeering charges.
There was a brief burst of applause from about dozen people who came to court, including several victims, after Damiani imposed the tough sentence.
Damiani said he continues to be interested in restitution, but felt imposing a sentence at this point would bring some closure to dozens of victims from nine countries, although the majority were Irish.
The wife of one of the victims agreed.
"The money is secondary at this point. The satisfaction of him finally going to jail for a long time is worth any amount of money. He is a ruthless character," she said. Cucciniello has been incarcerated for the past year after failing to post $3.5 million bail.
"It’s such a joy to see this stain washed away," said her husband.
In an unusual move, Damiani also agreed with a request by Assistant State’s Attorney John Waddock, that Cucciniello not be turned over to any "outside agency" without approval of the Connecticut court, a veiled reference to the con man’s previous protection under a federal program.
Cucciniello has had numerous convictions for other scams across the country in the past two decades, as well as one in Canada where losses reached $500,000, but he spent little time incarcerated.
In the 1990s, Cucciniello was in a federal witness protection program after saving the life of an FBI agent, according to his former attorney, Jay Surgent.
Waddock asked that Cucciniello "serve a sentence that reflects the kind of sentence he deserves."
Damiani read portions of letters from victims detailing the scam, which they felt was legitimate because of Cucciniello’s easy use of the law school.
Cucciniello took a minimum of $5,000 each from the immigrants, but many gave him much more for "back taxes," or financial investments, with one man loosing his $100,000 inheritance and another couple $20,000.
Both Waddock and Damiani also made a point of detailing the emotional damage inflicted by Cucciniello.
Peter Manev, a Bulgarian, lost $35,000, and his dream of building a life in the U.S. For most, the scam only became clear when Cucciniello was arrested a year ago, and Manev wrote about the "psychological shock" of losing all his hopes in one day.
"Some day we all have to stand in front of God and answer for all our deeds. It is on that day that Ralph will receive his full sentence," Manev wrote.
Other victims, who were denied entry back into the country after Cucciniello lied that they could travel freely, were strung along for months afterwards with Cucciniello continuing to play out the charade.
Seamus Walsh and Jennifer Quinn were such a couple, who thought Cucciniello’s efforts had put them on the right track. The mess left them with strained family relations and a lack of trust in people.
"I always taught I was a forgiving person; not believing in "an eye for an eye," but not any more. Please see that this man is not allowed free to destroy the lives of anyone else," Quinn wrote.
In another case, an Australian woman suffered complications during her pregnancy following a blood test that all the immigrants went through as part of physicals Cuccinielli falsely said were required by immigration officials.
Caroline Murphy from Chicago told Damiani she lost her fiancee after she was banned from returning here from Ireland and he can’t drop his commitments in America.
"I have been left devastated and crushed by Ralph Cucciniello’s actions. In his attempt to con innocent people out of large sums of money, he succeeded in ripping my life to pieces and ruining all of my future plans. To my fiancee and friends in America, it is as if I am dead, there one day and gone the next, without any chance of saying goodbye or a farewell kiss. I may never see him again and our relationship has fallen apart," she wrote.
"Although I will never get over the loss I endured, I will feel some consolation knowing that he will never have the opportunity to inflict this level of pain on anyone else again in the future," Murphy concluded.
Waddock read from portions of a report from the probation officer, who said Cucciniello "groomed his victims like any predator." The officer said his victims "were working here and contributing to their communities - something Ralph Cucciniello has never done."
Cucciniello, who has been serving time at MacDougal-Walker Correctional Institution in Suffield, complained to Damiani that he had no access to phones until the last three weeks and if he had another 90 days he could attempt to make restitution.
"I have always made full restitution. Check my records," Cucciniello told Damiani, to laughter from the courtroom.
Barry said because of Cucciniello’s background, as soon as he was sentenced he would be put in "protective custody," making it impossible for Barry to help get the money back.
"My job was to help the victims, oddly enough," Barry said after the sentencing.
Cucciniello has one more shot at a lesser sentence.
If he comes up with $300,000 in the next nine months, Waddock said he has agreed to hold a hearing on a sentence of 20 years, suspended after 12 years.
Timothy Reardon, an investigator with the state’s attorney office who gathered the evidence in the case, was pleased with its conclusion.
"My grandfather was an illegal Irish immigrant so I was happy to help out those who were trying to make a better life for themselves," Reardon said.
One firefighter was taken to the hospital as a precaution but no residents were injured.
The front section of the building sustained heavy damage.
Assistant Fire Chief Ralph Black said the fire started on the second floor and, because of the construction style of the building, quickly spread through voids in the walls to the third and fourth floors and attic.
Tony Jordan lived in a building next door and watched a crew of workers for two days putting down a new roof using a torch on a narrow section above the street-level bodega. After the fire was extinguished, Black said investigators were aware of the work and were examining that as a possible cause but had made no conclusions.
Six people were put up by the American Red Cross. Resident Sasha Rodriguez, 26, said she received several frantic calls from her mother, who was looking after one of her children in their apartment, saying that the building was on fire. She took the bus home from Chapel Street family safe and found firefighters still pouring water on her burned out building.
"Oh my God. I have nothing," she said.
The Los Luceros Mart was located on the first floor of the building.The store didn't sustain fire damage but the contents did sustain heavy water damage.
Read Abe Katz's story here:
Thursday, August 28, 2008
NEW HAVEN — Yale-New Haven Hospital and the National Council of Jewish Women will act as co-hosts for a voter registration drive between 7:30-9 a.m. and 11 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Sept. 9, in the hospital’s Atrium at the York Street entrance. Patients, visitors and employees may complete the voter registration card at the drive.
People can also fill out a voter registration card in person at their local town or city hall; the deadline for this "face-to-face" registration is October 28.
Also, people who are registered voters but have moved since the last election can use the voter registration card at the drive to change their address. The voter registration card must be post-marked 14 days before the election, or by October 21, to participate in the Nov. 4 election.
Employees and visitors who go to the drive can also learn how to obtain absentee ballots for use should they plan to be away on Election Day. Absentee ballots can be mailed or picked up 30 days before an election at each local Registrar of Voters office. They are due no later then 8 p.m. Election Day.
For more information or for voter registration cards, call the YNHH department of community and government relations, (203) 688-2503.
For more information on Yale-New Haven Hospital, visit: http://www.ynhh.org/index2.html
Do you know these women?
NEW HAVEN — Police Wednesday released a photo of two women they are seeking for questioning in connection with an alleged "credit card theft and fraud operation."
The photo was taken while the two women were shopping at Shaw’s Supermarket, police said. Anyone with information about the two women is asked to call the Detective Bureau at 946-6304.
Read Mary O'Leary's story here:
Cornell Scott, 73, shown at right, executive director of the Hill Health Corp. with which he was associated for 40 years, died Monday after a lengthy battle with cancer.
Marna Borgstrom, president and chief executive officer of Yale-New Haven Hospital said he was full of praise for others, not himself.
Read Mary O'Leary's story here:
Wednesday, August 27, 2008
Read Randall Beach's full story here:
Read Elizabeth Benton's full story here:
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
NEW HAVEN — The Saint Thomas More Council #13500 of the Knights of Columbus will hold its First Annual Fish Fry and Chowder Cook-Off from 1 to 4 p.m. on Oct. 5 at the Knights of Columbus Museum, 1 State St.
It will be an afternoon of food and fun for the whole family, including a paper airplane contest, a "draw Columbus" event for the youngsters and entertainment by the Silks and Sounds of Hamden, a dynamic women’s chorus that performs throughout the New England area, organizers said. The food will be provided by The Sandbar Restaurant. For those who feel their clam chowder recipe is the best, there will be a Chowder Cook-Off Contest. All net proceeds will benefit the Council’s Youth Scholarship Fund. For reservations and ticket information, call Jess Mallory at (203) 752-4555.
Editor’s note: With so much attention focused on Denver, Colo., it seemed natural to give residents of the Elm City a look at what is going on in the Mile High City. Here, courtesy of New Haven Mayor John DeStefano Jr., is that look. Check back every day during the Democratic National Convention for updates from the mayor, and read more about the convention online at http://www.nhregister.com/. And, don't worry (don't tell the mayor), we will do the same for the GOP when the Republican National Convention arrives next week in St. Paul.
Monday, August 25, 2008
NEW HAVEN -Yale-New Haven Transplantation Center will offer a free transplantation and organ donation awareness fair on the Green on Sept. 6 from 11 a.m.- 2 p.m.
The event will offer information and educational materials on organ and tissue donation and transplantation to the general public to encourage people to register to become donors.
The day will include refreshments, activities for kids, music, heart-warming living donor and patient stories, and on-site registration information on how to become an organ donor.
The fair will also be a tribute to living and deceased organ donors and their families. There will be a brief ceremony to recognize donors which will include remarks from living pediatric recipients and an adult donor.
"We are hopeful that people in our communities will come down to the fair, visit our information and vendor booths and receive information about our programs on how they can help save a life said Sukru Emre, MD, director, Yale-New Haven Transplantation Center and section chief of transplant surgery and immunology in the department of surgery at Yale School of Medicine. "Many local chapters of transplant-related organizations will be in attendance providing opportunities to volunteer and to learn more about the organ donation and transplantation process."
The fair is sponsored by Yale-New Haven Hospital, and will take place rain or shine. For more information, call Jessica Scheps at (203) 688-8727 or email at Jessica.email@example.com.
By Pamela McLoughlin
NEW HAVEN — Members of the grassroots activist group Sisters With A New Attitude — or SWANA — were counting on acting as hosts to police Chief James Lewis at their recent Meeting of the Moms session but, except for a few angered by his absence, gave him a pass for the cancellation because he had to attend a mayor’s meeting and is new to the city schedule.
"We’re definitely disappointed, but I hope we can meet with him in the future," said SWANA President Deborah Elmore.
SWANA member Selina Fair added: "We want some answers before another kid gets shot."
"Not only are they (young people) getting shot, but we don’t know who’s doing it," Fair said.
The group of women mobilizing to take back the streets and make them safer for youths will invite Lewis again because they say their tough questions aren’t going by the wayside, including, "Who is the source of the guns being supplied to our youth and what is being done about stopping it?" and "What programs are out there to take kids off the streets?"
Although Lewis had to cancel — for the second time — the group of about a dozen "sisters" and a visiting "brother," Alderman Robert Lee, D-11, had no shortage of agenda material to take Lewis’ place. The group brainstormed for two hours and plans quite a tornado of change for the future.
The group has decided to study the feasibility of a curfew for youth, such as the 9 p.m. curfew imposed in Hartford recently after a spate of severe violence there. Should such a plan look as though it could be effective in curbing violence, the group may petition the Board of Aldermen, although a curfew proposal has failed in the past in New Haven.
Issues that came up were the problem of holding parents accountable — usually through a fine many can’t afford — as well as protecting rights of youth, something high on Lee’s list, although he agrees that too many city youth are victims of violence.
They spoke of the "code of silence" among people on the street who are unwilling to tell police what they witness and agreed steps need to be taken to make that change.
Most of all, Lewis’ absence sparked talk about the importance of having a voice with more people behind it. Members of the group said they are going to tell their sisters, daughters, mothers, aunts, friends and others they know about the group. They also decided Lewis and other city officials need to hear from kids — so they are planning how to attract young people to a huge forum — whether through rappers, food or another form of entertainment — so they can "talk" to officials and help with solutions. Teens themselves will be part of that planning process, members decided.
SWANA also will try to unite many groups like themselves who are meeting around the city talking about problems. They’ll also address groups such as the Elks, Masons and others to get more people involved. The group is not limited to women.
"We all just need to come together...We need to find out what the kids today want," said SWANA member Elizabeth Murphy. "We can draw a lot of people. If you’re talking about something new, your kids are going to listen to you."
The Meeting of the Moms, an extension of SWANA, will be held from 5:30 to 7 p.m. every Wednesday at the Wilson Library. Regular SWANA meetings are held from 1 to 3:30 p.m. the first and third Saturday of every month at 50 Fitch St. Anyone can become involved in the group.
Read Ed Stannard's full story here:
Saturday, August 23, 2008
Friday, August 22, 2008
NEW HAVEN — United Way of Greater New Haven has given Fellowship Place, Inc. $25,000 grant to continue funding the agency’s Right to Work and Learn program. The funding will be focused on "maintaining current services to provide education and find competitive employment for adults living with a chronic mental illness," Fellowship Place said in a statement.
"We are pleased United Way is able to continue its support of programs to help our members live independently and be productive members of the community. Finding employment is an important component of recovery from mental illness and/or substance abuse," said Mary Guerrera, Executive Director of Fellowship Place, Inc., in the statement. "Our partnership with United Way of Greater New Haven is of long standing and this continuation will enable the agency to maintain programs that help those with mental illness achieve what others take for granted: finish their education and find a job in the community."
Fellowship Place will serve about 35 people this year by providing internships, literacy training, and community job placements. The internship program exposes people with little or no work history to entry level jobs in clerical, maintenance, and food service industries. Fellowship Place also is recruiting area businesses for its Employer Bank, which matches employer needs with the skills and interests of agency clients looking for jobs.
According to it leaders, Fellowship Place, Inc. each year welcomes more than 500 people who suffer from a chronic mental illness to its campus in downtown New Haven to find acceptance and opportunities to learn new skills, be productive, and give back to the community. Services include job training, expressive arts, a computer learning center, social and recreational activities, supported housing, counseling and three healthy meals a day. Most importantly, Fellowship Place provides hope and a chance to connect with others who face the same life challenges; it is open 365 days a year, including all weekends and holidays.
The operation took place just one week after police charged 12 alleged "johns" who were arrested in a sting in which a female officer posed as a prostitute.
The newer sting, which began a little after 10 p.m. Thursday and ran through early Friday morning, was conducted by the New Haven Police Gun and Firearms Units in the Fair Haven and Dwight/Kensington Police Districts, police said. A member of the unit posed as a "john" for the operation. Charged with prostitution are: Edwin Espada, 45, 321 Poplar St.; Wynona Carmon-Ramirez, of 45 Assumption St.; Michelle Jamison, 29, of 480 Ferry St.; Renee Milton, 31, of 377 Ferry St.; Rhonda Watson, 45, of 332 Munson St.; Natalie Bethea, 28, of 22 Hedge St., and Mary Davis, 56, of 12 Maple Ave. Wallingford, and Karen Napoli, 47, of 224 Crosswoods Road, New York, NY. Bethea also is charged with possession of narcotics.
Police said officers would continue sting operations in coming months for "johns" and prostitutes in an "effort to significantly reduce incidents of prostitution throughout the city." The department said it also intends to continue its practice of releasing names and photographs of "johns" and prostitutes to the public as arrests are made.
To see photos of those arrested, visit nhregister.com
NEW HAVEN — United Way of Greater New Haven has provided two grants to Community Mediation, Inc., totalling $55,000, to provide a second year of funding for the Network for Civic Engagement and to support the Homelessness Intervention Program.
The network is a collaboration of about 30 nonprofit organizations, funders and community groups that "seek to engage residents in dialogue, deliberation and more to foster participation in public life," according to a prepared statement.
"We are excited to be expanding the network with help from the United Way of Greater New Haven, Gateway Community College, Yale University, the New Haven Free Public Library, the International Festival of Arts and Ideas, and many others, to involve hundreds of New Haven area residents in making all our communities better places for our children and grandchildren," Community Mediation Executive Director Charlie Pillsbury said in the statement.
With the funding, the network expects to increase its visibility in Greater New Haven, develop civic engagement tools and resources, and involve more community residents in civic engagement projects, the statement said. The network also will work on a national initiative with Everyday Democracy in East Harford to bring people from different racial and ethnic backgrounds together for dialogue about the impact of immigration on New Haven’s future. The dialogue is to develop concerted actions to strengthen the community, the statement said
With its funding, the Homelessness Intervention Program aims to help families in Branford, East Haven, Hamden, New Haven, North Haven and West Haven with security deposits. Community Mediation also receives HIP funding from the New Haven, through the city’s Emergency Shelter Grant, to help New Haven families only, the statement said.
"In 2007-2008, Community Mediation helped approximately 60 families move into independent, secure and affordable housing by not only providing security deposit assistance, but also educating both tenants and landlords about their rights and responsibilities. According to our last follow up contacts in May, 2008, approximately 70 percent of the families we helped were still in the same housing after one year," CM Associate Director Brenda Cavanaugh said in the statement.
CM Housing Mediator Cristina Urrutia added: "Recently, we had a client whose husband was dealing drugs. She wanted to remove her two young children from this dangerous environment. Her husband told her that she would never make it without him. She came to us for help because she did not have enough money to move into a new apartment. Within one month, we paid almost 90 percent of her security deposit with HIP funds and her first month’s rent with FEMA funds. We then helped her get furnishings for free through CM’s membership in the new Furniture Co-op."
Community Mediation, Inc. is a nonprofit organization that promotes peaceful communities and just relationships by enabling individuals, families, organizations and communities to resolve conflicts themselves through mediation, dialogue, training, facilitation and education Visit www.community-mediation.org.
United Way of Greater New Haven brings together the caring power of the community to create measurable, sustainable change and to improve lives. Together with community partners, United Way identifies the region’s greatest needs and best opportunities for change; raises dollars and invest those dollars for results and connects people to their caring through volunteer opportunities. For more information about United Way’s community leadership and how to help, visit www.uwgnh.org
The visual: a tank sitting quietly in the field.
The copy: It weighs 68 tons. It can cross a desert at 40 mph.
It can hit a target from 2.5 miles.
The tagline: Without Employer Support of the National Guard and Reserve,
it might not move an inch.
With all due respect to that printed ad, that’s a pretty powerful statement of the role employers can play in supporting our military. I recently attended a ceremony honoring Travelers Company. Big deal you might think—so a large corporation gets another recognition—but this one was more meaningful than most.
Travelers Company had been nominated by one of its employees for a Patriot Award. The Patriot Award is given by ESGR—Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve—and the employee who nominated them was a National Guardsman who is being deployed. He simply wanted to say thank you to his employer for being supportive of him and his family while he is away serving his country.
Connecticut is blessed with employers all over the state who are recognized on Connecticut ESGR’s website as members—Avon, Cromwell, Essex, Pawcatuck, Willimantic, Norwalk, and Old Saybrook are just a few of the towns with employers who support employees who are members of the Guard and Reserve.
According the ESGR’s website (www.esgr.org) National Guard and Reserve members make up about 48 percent of the military. As our world continues to change and war is an ever present threat, more and more Guard and Reserve members are being called upon to defend our country and protect our way of life. Of course our immediate thoughts go to the spouses and children left behind but increasingly, employers and co-workers of service members are affected.
As an organization under the Department of Defense, ESGR “promotes cooperation and understanding between…members and their civilian employers to assist in the resolution of conflicts arising from an employee’s military commitment.” Connecticut has more than 7500 reservists and guardsmen serving around the world.
Employers large and small are struggling to survive in the economy, employees are working harder to make ends meet so when a service members gets called away on duty for a year long tour of duty (maybe more than one depending on the situation) the pressure on the employer increases. It would be very easy to replace the employee, to say it’s the employees’ choice to serve and let them walk out the door without another thought. Due to federal law that is not possible, but again, Connecticut employers go above and beyond.
Connecticut’s employers have stepped up to the plate—supporting their employee, supporting the family, coworkers have pitched in covering projects, staying in touch with the family and praying for their coworker’s safety. Everyone is affected by the War on Terror and everyone is finding their way to contribute—large and small. No effort is unappreciated, no thought in vain.
This ceremony was on Guardsman thanking one company. I want to thank all the Connecticut companies who are Connecticut ESGR members, who are part of the Employer Partnership Program which supports Army Reservists, or any other way you are stepping to the plate and showing support of our service members.
I also wanted to take this opportunity to thank the serviceman for recognizing his employer, Travelers, for their commitment to their employee and all of Connecticut’s employers who are members of Connecticut Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve.
And of course, a special thank you and continued prayers for the safety of our military serving around the world.
If you are an employer interested in learning more about Connecticut Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve, please contact Connecticut ESGR President Lew Vasquez at 860-306-3462. The website is www.ctesgr.org.
New Haven Superintendent of Schools Reginald Mayo said without a 3 percent to 4 percent increase in state Educational Cost Sharing grants, a significant source of funding for local schools, “you’re going to start to cut the heart out of our school districts.”
Read the full story here:
Thursday, August 21, 2008
Register Topics Editor
NEW HAVEN — The wheels of progress are turning to get more bicycle racks for commuters using Union Station.
The South Central Connecticut Regional Council of Governments is expected this month to approve a $145,000 grant to add 100 racks at the train station, while also marking 4.6 miles of bicycle lanes on several major streets through New Haven leading to the station.For the full story, go to nhregister.com.
NEW HAVEN — A judge has granted an temporary injunction against the city, barring it from seizing assets from a Branford company in a tax dispute ascribed by the firm’s attorney as “a case of over zealousness” by the city and assessor’s office.
The tax squabble landed the city and The Smedley Co., a Branford-based crane rental company, in Superior Court last year over whether the city can tax rental equipment when it is stationed, sometimes for at times for months, at construction sites around New Haven.
For the full story, go to nhregister.com.
Register Topics Editor
NEW HAVEN — In eight months, the city hopes to lay the foundation to transform the 26 acres along Route 34 into a vibrant area where jobs and housing will boost the grand list and reconnect an area now split off from adjacent neighborhoods.
A meeting was held last month with several active neighborhood groups, representatives of the nearby Yale Medical School and Yale-New Haven Hospital, the Housing Authority and other stakeholders to build on a dialogue that has been growing for years.For the full story, go to nhregister.com.
By Ed Stannard
Register Metro Editor
At least one of the rumors swirling around Sen. Joseph I. Lieberman, I-Conn., has been verified: The onetime Democratic vice presidential candidate will speak at the Republican convention.
Lieberman’s fervent support of Republican presumptive presidential nominee John McCain and his criticisms on Barack Obama, the presumptive Democratic nominee, have stoked rumors that he would speak at the GOP convention in St. Paul, Minn., and that he might be named as McCain’s running mate.
For the full story, go to nhregister.com.
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
The theme of the exhibit, dubbed WHY NOT?! and sponsored by the Connecticut Chapter of the Women’s Caucus for Art, is "women artists pushing boundaries," organizers said in a statement. "Each artist had the opportunity to reflect on the question from whatever position she chose — personal, artistic, political, historical, etc. Why not, for instance, break the artistic rules they learned? Why not set an idea or societal demand on its head? Why not speak up for someone who doesn't have a voice? Why not make any statement you want?," the statement said.
“The end result (of answering this question) embodies what has made the field of art dynamic rather than static, creative rather than technical,” said Anne Doris Eisner, co-president of the Women’s Caucus. “It’s what art is all about."
Two other events expand on the theme of the show while the exhibit is on display. On Thursday, Sept. 18, the Museum will host A Taste for Art, which offers a guided tour of its permanent collection on Thursday, Sept. 18 at noon. The tour, which is free and open to the public, will begin with a lunch – bring your own – outside the Burt Chernow Galleries. Ann Chernow will speak about Burt, her husband and founder of the Museum; her own work; and the work of renowned artists Christo and Jeanne Claude. A tour focusing on women artists in the Museum's collection will follow.
Important women artists whose work is represented in the collection include Elaine de Kooning, Lee Bontecou, Alice Baber, Rene Schumacher, Sylvia Sleigh, Doris Cesar, Jane Freilicher, and Jane Peterson. Current or one-time WCA-CT members whose work is represented in the collection include Ann Chernow, Camille Eskell, Suzanne Benton, Alberta Cifolelli, June Ahrens and Susan Sharp.
On Thursday, Oct. 16, Women reinventing themselves will be the subject of a panel discussion entitled Re-invent: WHY NOT?! to be held at the Museum. Panelists include Suzanne Sheridan, singer, photographer, and author of 90 Pound Suburban Housewife; Prill Boyle, best-selling author of Defying Gravity, a book about late-blooming women; and former art journalist Lisa Paul Streitfeld, now a full-time writer & multi-media artist, including performance art and new media in NYC. The panel will discuss how women re-invent themselves, their careers, their ways of working and problem-solving, and how they break boundaries and re-energize.
A reception with the speakers and open to the public at no charge, will be held from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. in the Burt Chernow Galleries, followed by the panel discussion from 6:45 to 8:00 p.m.
The opening reception for the exhibit itself will be held 5 to 7 p.m. Sept. 4 in the Burt Chernow Galleries at Housatonic, 900 Lafayette Blvd., Bridgeport.
The show is co-sponsored by the Connecticut Chapter of the Women's Caucus for Art and the Housatonic Museum of Art. The Connecticut Commission on Culture & Tourism; the Jamie A. Hulley Arts Foundation; the Park City Dept. of Downtown Special Services, Bridgeport; and Nationwide Insurance, Jeff Tobin provided additional support.
Registration is open for the 18th Annual Connecticut Star Party to be held by the Astronomical Society of New Haven Sept. 26-28, 2008 at the society’s dark sky location in Ashford.
CSP is family oriented, organizers said and daytime activities for the young (and young at heart) include free planetarium shows, a solar system walk, door prizes for children, and a raffle. The nights offer some of the darkest skies in southern New England, said organizers, who ask that participants remember to bring telescopes.
Guest speakers are Lowell Observatory Docent Rich Bohner, Astroimager Ruben Kier, and Matthew Marulla of AstronomyDaily.com.
Registration closes Sept. 15, and is limited to 300 people. Meal plan and bunk arrangements are available. CSP is the society’s annual, and only, fund raiser. For registration information, visit www.asnh.org.
Read Elizabeth Benton's story here:
Tuesday, August 19, 2008
HAMDEN — Students at Quinnipiac University will have a new source for campus news this year, as a result of controversies last year over the official student newspaper, the Quinnipiac Chronicle.
Former Chronicle Editor-in-Chief Jason Braff, a senior, and a number of the paper’s editors are hoping to launch the Quad News, which will be published only online, on Tuesday. The site will be up at www.quadnews.net.For the full story, go to nhregister.com.
Monday, August 18, 2008
The New Haven Job Corps Center Culinary students recently visited to the Union League Café on Chapel Street to learn the operations of a fine dining French restaurant, including food ordering, preparation, and staffing.
Job Corps Chef Gary Mehalik, advanced pastry and baking instructor said, "I want to express my gratitude to Chef Jeanne Pierre for inviting the students and me to his establishment and to apply classroom skills in a superb kitchen." In demand Job corps students prove once again that experience and attention to school work pay a big dividend.
As a result of the visit, Union League Café chef and owner Jeanne Pierre Vuillermet offered an internship at the restaurant. The opportunity is in the making and will provide a promising Job Corps youth with the opportunity to demonstrate their culinary skills and creativity in a real time environment, a Job Corps official said.
Pictured, from l to r are, Sean Madden, advanced pastry and baking student; Shereen Burnett, culinary arts student; Chef Gary Mehalik, advanced pastry and baking instructor.
Dr. Thomas Rutherford, associate professor of obstetrics, gynecology & reproductive sciences and director of the Yale Cancer Center gynecologic oncology program, will present the latest information on ovarian cancer. At the end of the presentation, guests will have time to ask Rutherford questions.
There is no charge for the film program and free parking is available. For more information call 946-7431.
"The opportunity to work with the Connecticut Folk Festival was a no-brainer, a win-win situation for everyone involved"
Art students at Southern Connecticut State University, shown in photo, helped design the official T-shirt for the 2008 Connecticut Folk Festival & Green Expo, director Barbara Manners said.
Formerly known as the New Haven Folk Festival, the Connecticut Folk Festival & Green Expo aims to bring "outstanding performers" to New Haven on Sept. 12-14, including Steve Earle and the Holmes Brothers. Over the course of the festival the student-designed T-shirt will be seen by an audience of more than 3000 people, organizers said in a statement.
"We approached art teacher Thuan Vu about working with his students because the art department at SCSU represents a fabulous pool of talent," Manners said in the statement.
Vu worked with his summer art class to come up with a variety of designs on the Festival’s themes of music, community, and environmental awareness. He said in the statement that his students were "excited to create designs that would be seen by the community at large and to be a part of something so positive and wonderful for the people of Connecticut . It allowed them to use their drawing and design skills to meet the demands of a professional job and they performed beautifully."
"The opportunity to work with the Connecticut Folk Festival was a no-brainer, a win-win situation for everyone involved," Vu said in the statement.
After reviewing the students’ designs, festival organizers chose Natalie Torres’s design created with computer graphics. Torres will receive$100 for her design. The T-shirt committee planned to only choose one design, but a second design, by Chris Ardito, was selected for use in other festival publicity. The contest was sponsored by the Book Trader Café and Hull’s Art Supply and Framing, both of New Haven.
The Festival’s traditional Saturday night concert under the stars in Edgerton Park on Sept. 13 will feature Steve Earle, the Holmes Brothers, Ruthie Foster, local favorites the Professors of Bluegrass, and Harry Manx and Allison Moorer. Friday evening’s concert at Lyman Center on Sept. 12 will showcase three "newgrass" and "roots rock" bands: Donna the Buffalo, Crooked Still, and Milton.
The Green Expo on Sept. 14 will be the largest ever held in Connecticut, organizers said. The free Green Expo will be from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on the main quad of SCSU’s campus. Environmental exhibits and demonstrations will educate the whole family, while music performances, workshops and art activities will engage the younger audience.
The Festival’s kick-off event will be the Grassy Hill Song Circle on Friday, Sept. 5. The Song Circle will present four singer-songwriters in an intimate setting. Cliff Eberhardt, Tom Pacheco, Lara Herscovitch and Joe Crookston will perform at 8 p.m. at the First Presbyterian Church, 704 Whitney Ave., New Haven.
For additional events and artists and a complete schedule visit www.ctfolk.org. Tickets can be purchased at the Web site tickets.southernct.edu or by calling the Lyman Center Box Office at (203) 392-6154.
Register Metro Editor
Imagine riding down Interstate 95 and seeing that familiar line of brake lights extending toward the far horizon.
Then imagine picking up your cell phone (with hands-free device firmly attached to your ear) and dialing 511. A computer-generated voice tells you: “Two-car accident on southbound I-95 in Milford has been cleared from the roadway. Residual backups expected.”
That kind of information may be just a couple of years away, as the state Department of Transportation works on a system that is up and running in 34 states.Read the full story at nhregister.com.
Sunday, August 17, 2008
Saturday, August 16, 2008
Friday, August 15, 2008
Thursday, August 14, 2008
By Ed Stannard, Register Metro Editor
It was the biggest blackout ever in North America, but for many in southern Connecticut, it’s just a hazy summer memory.
Five years ago today (Aug. 14, 2003), overgrown trees in Ohio hit four power lines, triggering a blackout at about 4 p.m. that brought down the electrical systems in eight states and the province of Ontario.Read the full story at nhregister.com.
By Mariana Stebbins
Special to the Register
NEW HAVEN — U.S. Rep. Rosa Delauro has given more than $500,000 in scholarship money since 1991, in memory of her father and of a longtime member of her staff.
And she is still giving.
Fifty students from DeLauro’s 3rd District, which includes Greater New Haven, each will receive $1,000 toward their college education. The money comes from the Ted DeLauro and the Maria Baez Perez scholarship programs.
DeLauro created the Ted DeLauro scholarship in 1991, when she was first elected to Congress, to honor the memory of her late father, Ted DeLauro, a former New Haven alderman.
"My father was very concerned with education and community service, and the scholarship was a way I found to honor him and also create an opportunity for youngsters to seek a college education," DeLauro said. "My hope is that these students will use the scholarship to fulfill their dreams."
Along the same lines, the other scholarship was created in 2002 to honor Maria Baez Perez, a native of Puerto Rico who served for many years on DeLauro’s staff, focusing her work on immigration, social security and health care issues. Perez died in 2002; she was 33.
The scholarships are awarded to 40 to 50 high school students annually and more than 500 students over the last 17 years. The scholarships are entirely funded with the pay raises and cost-of-living adjustments from DeLauro’s congressional salary. DeLauro, who technically earns a $169,300 annual salary, still takes home the same yearly pay she did when she first took office in Jan. 1991: $125,100.
"Since I came to office I decided not to take any pay raises, so all that money goes directly to the scholarships," said DeLauro.
To qualify for the Ted DeLauro scholarship, students must have participated in community service and kept a B grade average over the past three years. Schools in the 3rd District are randomly chosen to participate in the program and the school officials independently select one student to receive the scholarship.
The Maria Baez Perez Scholarship is open to any graduating high school senior who is either an immigrant or the first generation American in their family, having at least one parent who immigrated to the United States. All schools in the 3rd District can participate in this program, which has an independent selection committee of community leaders to review applications and select recipients.
"Each student earned (these scholarships) because they sought to help others as they worked to realize their own goals," DeLauro said of students who all volunteered in community initiatives, including peer mentoring and diversity education programs. "It is their willingness to better themselves by seeking new information and experiences and sharing it that makes each of (them) a leader in (their) community."
Although DeLauro makes sure not to be involved in the selection of recipients, she and her family get a little closer after the recipients are announced.
DeLauro’s mother, Luisa DeLauro, who served 34 years as an alderwoman in New Haven, attends the students’ graduation every year, representing her daughter. "It’s hard for me to go because I am in Washington, but she enjoys going and she does a great job," the congresswoman said. "And we also have a reception for them in our house in July."
Mariana Stebbins is a Register intern.
By Mariana Stebbins
Special to the Register
NEW HAVEN — Yale Law School Human Rights scholarships and fellowships are about to be expanded with a $3 million gift from a Minnesota-based private grant making foundation.
With the funds, to be administered throughout the next three years, Yale will create the Robina Foundation Human Rights Fellowship Initiative at Yale Law School to support human rights leaders at all levels, from law school students to senior fellows. After three years, it is hoped the program will be self-sustaining, said Harold Hongju Koh, dean of Yale Law School.
The Robina Foundation was founded by a 1938 Yale alumnus, businessman and philanthropist James Binger, to provide financial support to transformative projects. Binger, who died in 2004 at age 88, selected Yale as one of Robina’s four partners, which include the University of Minnesota Law School, the Council on Foreign Relations and the Abbott Northwestern Hospital in Minneapolis.
The initiative will provide support in several ways to students and professionals committed to human rights. Scholarships will offset students tuitions, summer fellowships will cover travel and living costs for students working in human rights-oriented summer jobs and postgraduate fellowships will fund alumni human rights practices immediately after they leave law school.
Finally, Fellows in Residence will provide opportunities for scholars, clinicians, government employees and practitioners to take time from their careers in international human rights to explore and contribute new ideas in the intellectual community of Yale Law School.
"Students need cradle-to-grave support to do human rights work and scholarships and fellowships make it possible for students to find work after law school," said Koh.
Yale had been experiencing a growing demand for human rights fellowships and the institution was pleased when the Robina Foundation expressed interest in creating the initiative, said Yale Law School spokeswoman Janet Conroy.
Koh credited the demand to a trend saying, "what the civil rights movement was for students of the 60s, the human rights movement is for those in the 21st century."
Each year, 30 to 50 students are expected to benefit from the scholarships and fellowships.
"Frankly, the pay is bad," said Koh. "So, many people are dissuaded in pursuing their hearts’ desires, but human rights work is rewarding. That’s what it is all about."
Mariana Stebbins is a Register Intern. Alexandra Sanders, also a Register intern, contributed to this story.
Wednesday, August 13, 2008
Saturday, August 9, 2008
Register Metro Editor
A review of state Department of Transportation projects shows skyrocketing prices of steel, asphalt and concrete will weigh heavily on the state treasury, Gov. M. Jodi Rell said Friday.
Read the full story at nhregister.com.
Thursday, August 7, 2008
Read Bill Kaempffer's full story here:
Wednesday, August 6, 2008
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