|Joan Youngs receives the Community Leadership Award.|
Wilfredo Nieves, of Middletown, was honored with Middlesex United Way’s highest and most prestigious volunteer honor, the Community Service Award, Jan. 29 at the organization’s annual meeting at the Riverhouse at Goodspeed Station in Haddam. The award recognizes an individual for his length and continuity of volunteer service to Middlesex United Way.
Nieves, the former president of Middlesex Community College, is now the president of Capital Community College. His Middlesex United Way service dates back to 2002, when he served on the Campaign Cabinet and the Nominating Committee and chaired Loaned Executive recruitment. He served as campaign chair in 2003-2004, has served on several Middlesex United Way committees, and has chaired numerous committees, including the Community Impact Council from 2007 to 2010. He currently serves on the Board of Directors, the Executive Committee, and the Community Impact Council.
Joan Youngs, of East Hampton, was also honored at the meeting with the Community Leadership Award, recognizing her leadership in strengthening communities. Throughout her life, Youngs has volunteered with numerous organizations, including Middlesex United Way. She volunteers in the office and has served on various committees, most recently the Housing Impact Team. In her hometown of East Hampton, Youngs helped establish the precursors to what is now the East Hampton Food and Fuel Bank, and she continues to volunteer and serve on the board.
Even Start Family Literacy, a program of Middletown Adult Education, received the Community Impact Award in recognition of the organization’s outstanding commitment to improving lives and community conditions. Even Start is committed to giving families access to the training and support they need to create a literate home environment and enhance the academic achievement of both parents and their children. Even Start works to break the cycle of poverty and illiteracy by improving educational opportunities for families most in need.
Outgoing Board President Gary Simonsen, president of PrimePay LLC in Cromwell, was honored after a two-year term in this leadership role. Clifford O. Straub, president of Lifestyle Financial Strategies LLC in Middletown, was elected to succeed Simonsen.
Five new directors were also elected to the Board of Middlesex United Way: Vincent G. Capece, Jr., president and CEO of Middlesex Hospital; Jay Mills, financial advisor for The Oakley Wing Group at Morgan Stanley in Essex; Lindsay Parke, of Middlefield, project manager in Community Programs for Northeast Utilities; Quentin “Q” Phipps, of Middletown, executive director of Middletown’s Downtown Business District and city treasurer of Middletown; and Anne Ryczek, of Middletown, staffing professional at A. R. Mazzotta Employment Specialists. Capece will serve as Middlesex United Way’s 2013-14 campaign chair.
Middlesex United Way is a locally based organization dedicated to strengthening lives, helping people, and improving community conditions in the fifteen towns in Middlesex County. Middlesex United Way serves the towns of Chester, Clinton, Cromwell, Deep River, Durham, East Haddam, East Hampton, Essex, Haddam, Killingworth, Middlefield, Middletown, Old Saybrook, Portland and Westbrook. To learn more, visit middlesexunitedway.org or facebook.com/middlesexunitedway.