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Greater Valley Recognition Breakfast a Success!

Released 25 April 2014


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 introduction.

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 England Division.


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?"

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