Middletown, Conn.—The Middlesex Community College Foundation is pleased to announce the recipients of their annual donor awards, presented on Tuesday, October 24. Honorees included Robin Gilmartin, MSW, of West Hartford, Conn. (Donor Recognition Award); Anne Cassady, MxCC professor emerita of Durham, Conn., and Corey Martell, MxCC executive assistant to the president, Lisbon, Conn., (Corporator Award); and Hugh and Judith Cox, in memoriam, of Chester, Conn., (Legacy Award). The Foundation also elected four new board members.
“As ambassadors for the college, we often hear how Middlesex Community College has changed the lives of enrolled students as well as many of the thousands of alumni who have passed through these doors in the last 50 years. Most of these students are our neighbors, teachers, accountants, veterinarians, lawyers, police officers, parents, and friends. They are us,” said Foundation board chair, MxCC alumna, and Middletown attorney, Julé Crawford, who presented the awards with MxCC Associate Dean of Development Cheryl Dumont-Smith.
In the summer of 2016, Gilmartin became acquainted with MxCC through an interest in supporting student veterans’ education. This spearheaded the family of World War II veteran and former POW Darrell Stark of Stafford Springs, Conn., to establish the Darrell D. and Julia Stark Scholarship in their memory. The fund recently reached the endowed level of $10,000 and awarded its first recipient, David Rennison of Middletown in September.
After experiencing firsthand how unexpected life expenses can impact one’s ability to complete an education, Gilmartin set up the Single Line of Hope Fund through the MxCC Foundation. This fund offers short-term assistance to MxCC students facing challenging life circumstances, helping them to stay in school by paying for books or even car repairs. The fund has already assisted 15 students, including Evelyn Mireku of Meriden who attended the event and shared her experience.
A retired member of the English department for almost four decades, Cassady is a corporator of the Foundation and previously served on the board, during which she chaired the Board Development Committee along with two annual Red Moon fundraising events. She was a member of the 50th anniversary committee, collecting most of the 50 alumni profiles displayed on the MxCC website. Cassady also helped establish the new MxCC Alumni Network and remains a loyal supporter of the college.
Working her way from secretary in 2006 to the current executive assistant to the president, Martell served former MxCC President Anna Wasescha since 2011. “Her mark on the college will be indelible because, above all, she exemplifies the best of what we believe community colleges can be: open, welcoming, inclusive communities, with unending belief in the ability of each human being to rise to their highest potential,” wrote President Wasescha about Martell in a letter to the board.
The Foundation Legacy Award was given in memory of Hugh and Judith Cox, who passed away this past summer. They were longtime supporters, advocates, and donors to Middlesex Community College and its Foundation. A founding board member, Hugh Cox was appointed to the Community College Board of Trustees by Governor M. Jodi Rell and served on various committees, guiding college and system leadership, including presidential searches. Hugh and Judith Cox established scholarships and support programs for students interested in the sciences, contributed to numerous college and Foundation initiatives, and advocated at both the state and local level for the college in support of the opportunities offered to students.
Joining the MxCC Foundation board are: Jeanette Hodge (Portland), retired director of patient relations at Yale-New Haven Hospital; Laura Krueger (Meriden), MxCC alumna and director of public relations and marketing for The Salvation Army; faculty representative, Frank Stellabotte (Norwalk), MxCC interim program coordinator, biotechnology; and Frances Viggiani (East Haddam), associate professor of management, Southern Connecticut State University.
Created as a separate 501(c)(3) organization in 1979, the Middlesex Community College Foundation supports the college by encouraging and managing charitable contributions; directing funds for scholarships and academic development; and creating collaborations and partnerships with area business, civic, educational and professional leaders.
Since 1966, Middlesex Community College has provided high-quality, affordable, and accessible education to a diverse population, enhancing the strengths of individuals through degree, certificate, and lifelong learning programs that lead to university transfer, employment, and an enriched awareness of our shared responsibilities as global citizens. A part of the Connecticut State Colleges and Universities system, MxCC offers more than 60 degree or certificate programs at the main 38-acre campus in Middletown, MxCC@Platt in Meriden, and online.
October 31, 2017