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OUR 2022 Stories & News

Annouoncement

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August 2022

Join us in congratulating our own IWFCT mmber Jennifer Tombaugh for being named as one of the To 50 Business Leaders of Connecticut for 2022 as announced by The U.S. Business Report.

 

Jennifer Tombaugh is President of Tauck, the US based tour operator serving all seven continents with more than 150 guided travel experiences and events for culturally curious travelers on land, small ship and river cruises. Jennifer oversees Tauck’s Worldwide Operations, General Management, Reservations, Guest Relations and Sales & Marketing teams. During her 16 years at Tauck, her roles have included the launch of Tauck Bridges (family travel brand), the redesign of Tauck reservation systems, a re-launch of tauck.com and the formation of Tauck Ventures, focused on new business development.

 

Jennifer also spearheaded Tauck’s partnership with the acclaimed filmmaker Ken Burns and his co-producer Dayton Duncan to form Ken Burns American Journeys. Prior to Tauck, Jennifer was Group Account Director with the advertising firm Leo Burnett in Taipei, Taiwan; in Brand Management at The Coca-Cola Company in Atlanta, Georgia; and a management consultant with Monitor Company. Jennifer is a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Business School. She currently is also a member of the Board of Trustees of the Mark Twain House, the Board of Directors of the Fairfield County Business Council, the Board of Visitors at the Jack Welch College of Business at Sacred Heart University and the Connecticut River Valley chapter of YPO.

It is no surprise that Jennifer has been selected and recognized as one of the 50 Business Leaders of Connecticut for 2022.  The announcement can be viewed at the following Link

New Member

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June 2022

IWFCT is pleased to welcome Joanne Berger-Sweeny as one of our new members. 

Joanne Berger-Sweeney is the 22nd president of Trinity College.  Joanne has been in that position since July 2014 and has overseen several major accomplishments, including the completion of the college’s strategic plan, Summit, which will guide Trinity toward its bicentennial in 2023 and beyond. Under her leadership, the college expanded its footprint to Constitution Plaza in downtown Hartford and entered into a partnership with global technology firm Infosys to create educational programs to prepare liberal arts students and Infosys employees for the digital workplace of the future. She also co-chaired Connecticut’s statewide Higher Education Innovation & Entrepreneurship Working Group.  Additional achievements under Joanne’s leadership include the establishment of Trinity’s Task Force on the Prevention of Sexual Misconduct, the founding of the Center for Caribbean Studies at Trinity College, and the college’s thriving partnership with edX, one of the world’s premier online course platforms

 

Before coming to Trinity, Joanne served as dean of the School of Arts and Sciences at Tufts University, creating the vision and setting the strategic direction for the university’s largest school. Prior to Tufts, Joanne was a member of the Wellesley College faculty. Her teaching and research career at Wellesley spanned 13 years prior to being named associate dean in 2004.

 

Joanne received her undergraduate degree in psychobiology from Wellesley College and her M.P.H. in environmental health sciences from the University of California, Berkeley. While working on her Ph.D. in neurotoxicology from the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health, she did the proof of concept work on Razadyne, which went on to be the second-most-used Alzheimer’s drug in the world. She completed her postdoctoral training at the National Institute of Health (INSERM) in Paris, France.

 

Joanne serves on many boards in the Hartford region, including MetroHartford Alliance; Hartford HealthCare; (was recently the chair of the Connecticut Conference of Independent Colleges; the Hartford Consortium for Higher Education; and the Capital Region Development Authority. She is serving as board member on the Henry Luce Foundation, Institute of International Education and Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory. She also is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the International Behavioral Neuroscience Society (IBNS), and she is a member of the Committee on Committees of the Society for Neuroscience and the Scientific Advisory Committee of the African American Neuroscience Research Initiative.

 

Joanne is the recipient of numerous awards and honors, including a Lifetime Mentoring Award from the Society for Neuroscience (2006) and the National Science Foundation Young Investigator Award.  In 2017, the Posse Foundation awarded Joanne with the Posse Star and October of 2018 she inducted as a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Additional information about Joanne can be found at the following link.

New Member

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June 2022

IWFCT is pleased to welcome Jill Adams as one of our new members. 

Jill is the CEO, co-founder and majority owner of Adams & Knight. She oversees the agency’s strategic marketing services, helping to translate client objectives into results-driven advertising, public relations and digital marketing.

After graduating from college in D.C., Jill stayed in the Capitol to work as an aide to a U.S. Congressman.  Yearning for an overseas adventure, she later moved to Madrid to teach English and travel.  Back in the states, she completed a grad degree in communications at Boston University and put it to work at several agencies in Boston and Hartford. Prior to starting her own firm, she also gained valuable client-side experience at Connecticut Mutual and as a VP of Communications for Monarch Financial Services.

Additional information about Jill can be found at the following link.

New Member

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May 2022

IWFCT is pleased to welcome Barbara Karpinska as one of our new members. 

Barbara serves as Regional Vice President at Prospero Health, a start-up subsidiary of Optum. In her role Barbara is responsible for strategic growth, operational and financial performance as well as clinical quality in the states of New York and New Jersey. Most recently Barbara was the Vice Chair for Administration at Rutgers New Jersey Medical School Department of Surgery - the Chief non-physician leader in the department comprised of nine specialties in 20+ locations. Previously Barbara held leadership roles at major academic medical centers: Columbia University, NYU Langone Health, Northwell Health and Mount Sinai Health.  

Early in her career Barbara was a practicing Physical Therapist, lectured as an Adjunct in the Doctor of Physical Therapy program at Hunter College, CUNY and won teaching awards. Rapid development of virtual learning resulting from COVID19 pandemic enabled Barbara to teach at Warsaw School of Economics (SGH) and Medical University of Warsaw (WUM).  

 

Barbara is a board-certified Fellow of American College of Healthcare Executives (FACHE). She graduated with an MBA in Healthcare Administration from Baruch College and the Mount Sinai School of Medicine, and an MS in Physical Therapy from the University of Physical Education in Kraków, Poland. Barbara holds certificates in Leadership from Wharton School of Business (CPD Circle), in Health Data Science from Columbia Business School, and in High Performance and Change Management from Cornell University. She is also a GE-certified Six Sigma Green Belt. As the International Women’s Forum Fellow alumna, Barbara completed course work at Harvard Business School and INSEAD. Currently Barbara is working towards a PhD in Population Health Science at Jefferson University.

 

Barbara serves on advisory boards and committees: Oakcliff Sailing Center (the USSailing Team National Training Center), Rutgers Business School, International Women’s Forum (IWF NJ), ACHE-NJ, the New York Yacht Club and the Storm Trysail Club. Barbara is an avid sailboat racer, a PADI certified diver, and a sailing instructor. In recognition for her contributions to the profession, particularly during COVID-19 crisis, Barbara received 2021 ACHE-NJ Regent Award.

Additional information about Barbara can be found at the following link.

New Member

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May 2022

IWFCT is pleased to welcome Judy Casperson as one of our new members. 

Judy is a KeyBank Vice President Branch Manager focusing on Small Business, Key4Women and Community.  Her life’s work demonstrates her commitment to community, leadership, education, human services, and advocacy.  Judy’s professional career centers on delivering banking solutions, small business ownership/entrepreneurship, wealth management and philanthropy for community impact.  Judy's passions are at the forefront working at KeyBank and Women’s United where there is a focus on Financial Wellness/Literacy.  Judy believes that having a foundation of financial knowledge and empowerment can change families and have generational and societal impact.

 

From an early age, Judy said yes to opportunities and was a volunteer with orphans, a member of the Girl Scouts and worked on Community Impact initiatives to feed the unhoused or economically challenged.  She was elected to the West Hartford Town Council where she served as Chair of the Human Services Committee where she served for eight years enjoying making an impact for economic development and quality of life decisions.


Judy serves as the 2022 Co-Chair of the Power of the Purse, 2021 Sponsorship Co-Chair and Steering Committee Member, Board of The Women’s Advancement Initiative -Chair of Finance, Connecticut Women's Council, membership Co-Chair, and Easter Seals.  Past Board roles include the YWCA Hartford Region, the Aurora Foundation for Women and Girls, The Bridge Family Center, The Playhouse on Park, the West Hartford Schools Improvement Committee and the Children’s Law Center. She is a member of DE&I groups T.I.D.E.R and D.I.S.C. and KeyBank African Heritage Group.

 

Judy graduated from Parks College. She also attended Boise State University, University of Maryland Germany where she studied international business and The Kaiserslautern Deutsche Volkshochchule.

Additional information about Judy can be found at the following link.

Announcement

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May 2022

Join us in congratulating our own Lisa Nkonoki for her appointment to the Greenwood Standard Advisory Board.  

With extensive leadership experience, Lisa joins a new board that brings unique expertise to assist The Greenwood Standard with its mission, to strengthen, elevate and promote the economic growth of Black-owned businesses by intentionally and proactively directing spending power into the Black community 

 

Inspired by the Greenwood community of Tulsa, Oklahoma, The Greenwood Standard, was founded in 2020, amid a backdrop of social unrest and increasing calls for socioeconomic equality, within the African American community. The goal of the Greenwood Standard is to create a digital space for socially conscious consumers where they can connect with and support Black-owned merchants and makers.

 

Additional information about The Greenwood Standard can be found at the following link.

New Member

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April 2022

IWFCT is pleased to welcome Carolyn Trabuco as one of our new members. 

Carolyn Trabuco is the Chief Financial Officer of Inclusively. She has worked in the financial services and institutional investment industry for over 25 years. Carolyn is a co-founder of Azul Brazilian Airlines .  She has remained actively involved throughout the company’s many growth stages from its start up through an IPO as a member of the board of directors. Carolyn is the founder of Thistledown Advisory Group LLC, an advisory firm that works with companies focusing on high growth disruptive industry opportunities created by ESG and sustainability driven investment demand.

 

Prior to founding Thistledown, she was a global hedge fund investor and equity research analyst at Phibro Energy Trading LLC, with responsibility for investing in global resources and energy equities. Prior to that Ms. Trabuco was a portfolio manager and senior equity research analyst at Pequot Capital Management where she established the firm’s investment presence in global metals, mining and steel and in Brazil. Ms. Trabuco began her investment career in Equity Research at Fidelity Investments and later at the Wall Street firms Lehman Brothers, Montgomery Securities and First Union Capital Markets covering domestic emerging growth stocks.

 

Carolyn holds a bachelor’s degree in Art History from Georgetown University and a Master of Public Administration (MPA) from Sacred Heart University. She is a member of the finance faculty at Sacred Heart University where she teaches Alternative Investments.  Carolyn resides in Fairfield, CT with her husband, two sons and their ancient pug, Zip.

Additional information about Carolyn can be found at the following link

New Member

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April 2022

IWFCT is pleased to welcome Barbara Pearce as one of our new members. 

Barbara joined Connecticut Hospice in January 2019 as interim Chief Executive Officer (CEO). Ms. Pearce is currently CEO of Pearce Real Estate and is taking a sabbatical from Pearce Real Estate to devote her time to Connecticut Hospice.

She holds JD and MBA degrees, and practiced mergers and acquisitions law before joining Pearce Real Estate, assuming the Presidency in 1986. Barbara has been actively involved as a community leader in Connecticut and Greater New Haven, chairing many state and local boards, including Hospital of Saint Raphael, CBIA, Long Wharf Theatre; United Way of Greater New Haven; the Community Foundation for Greater New Haven; Artspace; and Saint Martin de Porres Academy.

Barbara holds honorary degrees from Albertus Magnus College and the University of New Haven, and has been honored by Glamour Magazine, the Connecticut Council on Philanthropy, and the Arts Council of Greater New Haven, as well as numerous other organizations.  She is a graduate of Harvard College, Harvard Law School, and Harvard Business School,

 

Additional information about Barbara can be found at the following link.

New Member

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April 2022

IWFCT is pleased to welcome Desiree Wolfe as one of our new members. 

Desiree has more than 25 years of experience bringing great ideas to life through product management and marketing for companies in the financial services and technology industries.  Currently, she is a Senior Director, Banking Industry Advisor for Salesforce.  Prior to her present role, Desiree was the Head of Community Banking Product Management at Webster Bank, with responsibility over the product development, direct marketing and product analytics for the Deposits, Lending, Payments, and Investments product lines within the Consumer and Small Business segments. Desiree has also held product and marketing leadership roles at Fiserv, Chase, and Foote Cone & Belding. 

 

Desiree has served as the Chair of the Deposits and Payments Committee of the Consumer Bankers Association and as a member of the BAI Research Executive Council.  She has received “40 Under 40” and “Champion for Celebrating Diversity” awards, both from the Fairfield County (Connecticut) Business Journal.

 

In her community, Desiree serves as the Board Chair of the Connecticut Woman’s Hall of Fame as Chair and is a member of the Girl Scouts of Connecticut Board.  Desiree earned her bachelor’s degree from Georgetown University and her MBA from Columbia Business School. 

Additional information about Desiree can be found at the following link.

New Member

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March 2022

IWFCT is pleased to welcome Carol Quinn Toomey as one of our new members. 

Carol is a managing director at Accenture's Health and Public Service client group where she is responsible for the company's work with Connecticut state government and higher education clients.  She has been based at Accenture's Hartford Office for close to 34 years.

Over the course of her career at Accenture, Carol worked across multiple industries and roles ranging from technical, functional to change management, for clients in manufacturing, electronics, natural resources, health insurance and public service. Her area of specialization is in change management, specifically in planning and executing global change programs and large-scale Enterprise Resource Planning systems implementations.

Carol is passionate about helping prepare tomorrow’s leaders and has served on the board of the Girl Scouts of Connecticut since 2017 where she is the second vice chair, the chair of the Resource Development committee and on the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion committee.  She also co-leads the Corporate Citizenship efforts of Accenture’s Hartford office and is a member of the Connecticut Women’s Council.  Carol previously served with various locally based charities and organizations, including teaching children’s religious studies, and leading the board for the Connecticut chapter of the Spina Bifida Association for several years.

Carol holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of Connecticut.

Additional information about Carol can be found at the following link

New Member

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March 2022

IWFCT is pleased to welcome Katherine Bergeron as one of our new members. 

Katherine Bergeron is the 11th president of Connecticut College.  Over the past years, her work has focused on building the College’s reputation by building its academic, residential, community, and financial strength. She has vigorously supported the faculty’s development of Connections, a bold new venture in interdisciplinary education, designed to prepare students for leadership in an interconnected world. During this same period, Connecticut College received some of the largest single gifts in its history to enhance financial aid, career education, academic support, athletics, and the arts. Capital projects completed during her tenure include the renovation of the Charles E. Shain Library, and the creation of both the Walter Commons for Global Study and Engagement and the Hale Center for Career Development. The newest projects are the revitalization of the College’s waterfront on the Thames River and the transformation of its historic art deco theater, Palmer Auditorium, into the Nancy Athey ’72 and Preston Athey Center for Performance and Research, slated to open January 2022.

Before coming to Connecticut College, she was dean of the college and professor of music at Brown University. She currently serves as Chair of the Board of Directors of the Council of Independent Colleges; on the Board of the American Academic Leadership Institute; on the Board of the Association of American Colleges and Universities; and on the Board of Directors of the Eastern Connecticut Symphony Orchestra. She hosts a podcast, Think.Do.Lead., about creativity and innovation, and has co-taught, with her husband, media artist Butch Rovan, a course on songwriting that has yielded two albums of original songs by Connecticut College students.


A Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Wesleyan University, Katherine earned master’s and doctoral degrees in music history from Cornell University, and wrote two prize-winning books on French music and culture. 

Additional information about Katherine can be found at the following link

New Member

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March 2022

IWFCT is pleased to welcome Regina Rush-Kittle as one of our new members. 

Regina Rush-Kittle serves as the Chief Administrative Officer (CAO) for the City of New Haven, CT, following an appointment by Mayor Justin Elicker, in December 2021.

 

Regina started her law enforcement career in 1983 with the Connecticut Department of Correction.  In 1985, she was hired by the Middletown Police Department as the first African American female Patrol Officer.  Two years later, she was hired by the Connecticut State Police, where she rose through the ranks becoming the first African American woman to be promoted to the ranks of State Police Sergeant, Lieutenant, Major, and Commanding Officer of a barracks, a district and the CT State Police Training Academy.

As a junior at UConn, Regina enlisted in the United States Marine Corps Reserves.  After completing her initial enlistment, Rush-Kittle transferred to the United States Army Reserves, where she served as a Drill Sergeant, First Sergeant, Sergeant Major and Command Sergeant Major.  Concurrently, while serving in dual law enforcement and military careers, Regina deployed in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2003 and again in 2009, completing a tour of duty in Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.  During this deployment, she was awarded the Bronze Star Medal.  Regina retired from the military in 2012, after completing 30 years of military service. 

In August 2015, after completing 30 years of service to the State of Connecticut, Rush-Kittle joined the Millbury, Massachusetts Police Department, where she served as second-in-command for the department until February 2017.  In January 2019, Regina returned to state service when she was appointed as the Deputy Commissioner of the CT Division of Emergency Management and Homeland Security, where she served in this position until leaving for her current position in New Haven. 

Regina is the recipient of many recognitions, commendations and military awards, and was inducted into the Connecticut Women’s Hall of Fame in 2017. She has been a member of the historically African American sorority, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., for over 40(+) years, and currently serves as a member of the Board of Directors for Make-A-Wish, CT. 

Regina holds a Master of Science degree in Criminal Justice Administration from Western New England College, and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from the University of Connecticut.  In May 2019, Regina was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Criminal Justice degree by the University of New Haven.  She is a graduate of Homeland Security Leadership Academy, 2nd Session; the FBI National Academy, 244th Session, and the U. S Army Command Sergeants Major Academy.

Additional information about Regina can be found at the following link

New Member

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March 2022

IWFCT is pleased to welcome Candice Eggerss as one of our new members. 

Candice is an experienced institutional investor, board member, and advisor. She has over 30 years of experience as a portfolio manager and venture capitalist in New York and Silicon Valley with a focus on new technologies.

 

She is currently on the board of a startup software company and a financial mentor for women wanting to better manage their own wealth. Candice recently stepped down as a board member and chair of the membership committee of IWF Northern California. 

 

Candice began her career as a securities analyst at Morgan Stanley, then managed portfolios of publicly traded stocks at JP Morgan Asset Management and a hedge fund, followed by a partnership at a venture capital firm. She is a current member of Stanford Women on Boards.  She previously served on privately held company boards with a focus on sustainability and non-profit boards focused on education and women.

Candice is known for bringing together board experience, financial and accounting expertise, deep knowledge of technology industry and trends, an understanding of capital markets, and the skills and insight of a professional investor in public, private, and sustainable enterprises. 

 

Candice is a graduate of Stanford Directors College, holds an MBA from Columbia Business School majoring in finance and accounting, and a BA from Stanford University in biology. 

Additional information about Candice can be found at the following link

New Member

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February 2022

IWFCT is pleased to welcome Sonja LaBarbera as one of our new members. 

Sonja LaBarbera is the Chief Executive Officer and President of Gaylord Specialty Healthcare.  She is the first woman and Gaylord employee to hold this position in the organization’s 118-year history and is the first clinician to achieve this rank in nearly 40 years. With 25 years in the healthcare industry, Sonja is experienced in clinical operations, strategic planning, business development, leadership development and philanthropy. She works with healthcare systems, academic and research institutions to foster collaborative efforts to support superior patient outcomes. With a focus on patient-centric care that is cost-effective, Sonja brings energy, visionary agility, and in-depth knowledge of the healthcare landscape to Gaylord.

 

Under her leadership, Sonja launched the Milne Institute for Healthcare Innovation in October 2020. The Milne Institute for Healthcare Innovation serves as the anchor for the Center for Applied Technology and Gaylord’s Center for Research and Innovation. This technology and research-focused institute works in concert with front-line clinicians and patients to achieve scientific and therapeutic breakthroughs fostering creative, multidisciplinary and innovative programs that enhance patient recovery.

Sonja serves on the Board of Directors of Gaylord Hospital/Gaylord Farm Association Inc., which oversees all services offered by the organization’s care continuum. She is an active member of the American College of Healthcare Executives (ACHE), Young Presidents’ Organization (YPO), Healthcare Financial Management Association (HFMA) and American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA).  Sonja was the 2019 Quinnipiac Chamber of Commerce Woman of the Year. She was named to the Hartford Business Journal list of Power 25 in Healthcare in both 2020 and 2021. She is the 2020 recipient of the New Haven Biz Women Who Mean Business award and was in their 2019 List of Power 50. Just recently she was identified as the Top Leader in the Large Employee Category by Hearst Media of CT for 2021.

 

Sonja earned her Master of Science in Organizational Leadership from Quinnipiac University and her Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology from State University of New York at Fredonia.

Additional information about Sonja can be found at the following link

New Member

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February 2022

IWFCT is pleased to welcome Joelle Murchison as one of our new members. 

Joelle A. Murchison combines her passion and expertise in education, equity & inclusion and communications in her work as the Founder & Principal of ExecMommyGroup LLC (EMG), an inclusion, leadership and coaching consulting practice.

Joelle began her career in higher education followed by a stint in the non-profit sector; then transitioning to corporate America - first with United Technologies and then as the inaugural Chief Diversity Officer at Travelers Insurance.  Joelle subsequently returned to higher education in 2016 as the inaugural Chief Diversity Officer at the University of Connecticut before launching EMG.

 

A recipient of numerous awards, Joelle serves as the chair of the board of RE-Center - Race and Equity in Education and is a director and chair of the Human Capital and DEI Committee on the board of College Possible, a national nonprofit focused on college access. Additionally, Joelle serves as a trustee of the Corporation of Brown University, the university’s decision-making body.  Joelle was also appointed chair of the Corporation’s new Equity, Diversity and Inclusion standing committee.  She serves as the Executive Director of The Lawyers Collaborative for Diversity and as an adjunct faculty member at the University of Connecticut School of Business.

 

Joelle is a graduate of Brown University, Harvard Graduate School of Education and Syracuse University’s Newhouse School of Public Communications.  

Additional information about Joelle can be found at the following link

Announcement

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January 2022

Join us in congratulating our own Susan Dunn for being appointed to the Board of Director of the Hartford Foundation. 

 

Susan is a former United Way President and the first woman to lead the United Way of Central and Northeastern Connecticut since its founding in 1924 and only the fifth staff leader in its 90-year history.

She has overseen the largest ever fundraising year, procuring $28 million in 2008 and launching the Working Families Initiative to maximize people’s income, earnings and assets while also help them move up the career ladder. The Volunteer Income Tax Assistance or VITA program was a key piece of this effort (with sites run by the Internal Revenue Service) that continues to provide free tax preparation for low-income people. This effort has resulted in major increases in families receiving the federal Earned Income Tax Credit and other refunds and credits to eligible taxpayers in New Britain and Hartford.

It is no surprise that Susan was appointed to the Board of Hartford Foundation.  Susan's appointment article can be viewed at the following  link