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News : Local Nov 15, 2012 - 3:39:28 PM


STAR recognizes several Norwalkers

By STAR, Inc., Lighting the Way





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Volunteers from Reed Exhibitions, who provided valuable and labour-intensive services to STAR were awarded the Corporate Volunteers of the Year Award at the 60th Annual Meeting and Recognition Awards
Among those recognized at the 60th Annual Meeting and Recognition Awards of STAR, Inc., Lighting the Way, held on October 22, 2012, were representatives of four Norwalk organizations: Reverend Robert Beinke of St. Peter's Lutheran Church; Joann Bottoni, Senior Vice President of Human Resources at Reed Exhibitions; and Jim Iezzi, Director of Norwalk Board of Education Lunch Program. In addition, Stephen Vigdor, a Norwalk resident, was recognized for his volunteer work and service to STAR in the inception of a Self Advocacy Group for clients with developmental disabilities.

Reverend Robert Beinke of St. Peter's Lutheran Church in Norwalk received the 2012 Humanitarian Award for his work with STAR clients and support of the organization. St. Peter's Lutheran Church is the site of STAR's Senior Services program, which provides daily activities and services to seniors with developmental disabilities. Reverend Beinke works with STAR clients one-on-one and has assisted with numerous service projects, both at the church and at other STAR facilities.

Joann Bottoni, Senior Vice President of Human Resources at Reed Exhibitions accepted the Corporate Volunteer of the Year Award on behalf of the twenty one volunteers from Reed Exhibitions who worked tirelessly on building and grounds improvements to a Norwalk group home for their service day project in September 2012. The two-day project included clearing extensive brush and shrubs from the yard, digging a trench, laying paving stones for a walking path, cutting deep roots, using a jackhammer on huge embedded boulders, laying down flooring and painting the interiors of the home. The program was exceptionally arduous and required tremendous dedication and effort from the volunteers.

Jim Iezzi, Director of Norwalk Board of Education Lunch Program accepted the Employer of the Year Award and in turn, he recognized the long term relationships between STAR and the Norwalk Board of Education, exemplified by STAR clients David Sementini and Billy O'Callaghan. David has worked for the Board of Education Lunch Program for 5 years and Billy has worked for the same program at a different school for 18 years.

Stephen Vigdor, a Norwalk resident who has been involved with STAR over 25 years, was presented an award for his service to STAR and work with the formation of a new Self Advocacy Group this past year for clients with developmental disabilities.

Norwalk Mayor Richard Moccia and Robin Wood, Director of Family Support Strategies and Advocacy for the Department of Developmental Services of Connecticut, also spoke at the Annual Meeting. Additional awards were presented to: Matt Glass, who received the Jo Mercede Volunteer of the Year Award; Tommy Gogolak, who received the Jeannette Shivers Client Award; Lila Sullivan of Darien, who received the Youth Volunteer of the Year Award; and STAR employees Mike Gallo and Barbara Remington Jones, who received STAR Hero Awards for their service and dedication to STAR.

STAR, Inc., Lighting the Way is a not–for-profit organization serving infants, children and adults with developmental disabilities, as well as providing support services to their families.

For information about STAR or volunteering for STAR, please contact Megan Johnson at 203-846-9581 x339 or mjohnson@starinconline.com.




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