HomeHaven's 7th Annual Meeting on October 29th, 2017
Nearly 60 hardy souls braved what felt like a monsoon on October 29 for HomeHaven’s 7th Annual Meeting at the Whitneyville Cultural Commons in Hamden. As dreary as it was outside, the room was cheery with bright-colored table coverings, sunny yellow flowers, and an inviting table of beverages, thanks to Celeste Markle and her set-up team, Roberta Thornton and Ruth Mayer. As members began streaming in, they turned over their homemade delicacies to Roberta to be placed on the 10-foot table at the front of the room. Off to one side, John Sawyer had set up an impromptu photo booth, snagging members who hadn’t yet had their pictures posted on the HomeHaven membership webpage.
Peggy Atherton, Board president, welcomed everyone and called the meeting to order after individuals had made their first round of the refreshments. She thanked outgoing Board members Susan Feinberg and Hal Spitzer, and welcomed new Board member Frank Estes, who came on last January and chairs the Fund Development committee. She also welcomed returning Board member Jane Jervis, who now chairs the Governance committee.
Peggy introduced HomeHaven’s new executive director, Lauri Lowell, who thanked the membership and staff for their warm welcome over the past four weeks. Lauri briefly shared her vision for the coming year, citing committee priorities, member concerns, and new initiatives to serve the membership and strengthen the organization (for an abbreviated version of her remarks, click HERE).
Lauri then introduced past executive director Bitsie Clark, joking that she was someone who needed no introduction! Bitsie discussed highlights of the past year, noting that details could be found in the Annual Report, copies of which were distributed by Ronan Hay to those present.
Bitsie closed out the program with a lively presentation of the ‘Can’t Live Without You’ Awards, given every year to members whose voluntary contributions are truly exemplary. This year’s recipients were Louis Audette, Susan Feinberg and Helen Robinson. A new category of award for community partners was introduced and given to Sharon Lovett-Graff, manager of the Mitchell Library where many successful Westville Village and HomeHaven programs are held.
Peggy adjourned the meeting and everyone enjoyed themselves for a time before heading back home through the inclement weather.