Greater Valley Recognition Breakfast a Success!
Many guests, dignitaries, and Friends attended.
ANSONIA - The First Annual Greater Valley Recognition
Breakfast is in the history books as a successful event. The word "successful"
might not even be quite strong enough to describe the sense of community and
pride that the crowd generated! The Valley came together to participate in a
program that was held to give local leaders and business associates a stronger
sense of what The Salvation Army is all about. And it worked!
Ansonia Salvation Army Officer, Lieutenant Anthony Rivera, served as host
for the breakfast; he welcomed everyone and introduced Advisory Board Chairman
Robert Van Egghen, Sr. Bob gave his good morning and welcome. He then thanked
his fellow Board Members and quickly turned the stage over to Master of
Ceremonies Dave Grant, who, according to Bob, needed very little
Next up was the National Anthem, played by a Salvation Army Brass Ensemble,
and that was followed with an invocation delivered by Major Douglas
Bartlebaugh, Financial Secretary for The Salvation Army’s Southern New
The Keynote Speaker was Robert D. Scinto, Chairman of RD Scinto, Inc. Bob
spoke about how he evolved in his career, starting out in Bridgeport as a
plumber in his early twenties to the business person that he has become today.
He discussed the "life lessons" that he has learned along the way and how these
experiences have made him a better person. Bob’s work is similar to The
Salvation Army in some ways, in that both believe in helping people in need.
The audience enjoyed Bob’s talk and was pleased that they had the
opportunity to learn more about him.
The "recognition" part of the program was next. The Hand to Man
Award was presented to Anna Bachleda for her outstanding work as
a volunteer over the past six years. The second award – the
Friends of the Army Award – was given to
Massaro Community Farm for donating large amounts of fresh, organic produce to
help feed people in need throughout the Valley. Caty Poole accepted on behalf
of all of the members of the farm. The third recognition award – the
Doing the Most Good Award – was given to the
James H. Wilkins Lodge #9. When Brother James Hodge accepted the award, he
informed the audience that "they are the smallest Masonic Lodge in
Connecticut… yet they helped raise the most money." The award was given
in recognition of the major impact the members have had in helping charities
throughout the community.
The program was brought to a close by Lieutenant Stephanie Rivera, who once
again thanked everyone and gave the closing benediction. Both Lieutenants
Anthony and Stephanie Rivera give special thanks to their Greater Valley
Advisory Board members. Considering it was a "first time event," the breakfast
was truly phenomenal. Chairman Bob Van Egghen, Robert Rose, Rob Van Egghen,
Patti Villers, and Ralph Villers all contributed a tremendous amount of time
and talent to make this event happen… and it showed! As people left,
several asked "What's the date for next year?"