Subject: $30,000 in State Regional Grants Awarded to Fairfield County for Arts & Cultural Programs

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Sept. 21, 2016
Media Contact:
Jennifer Bangser, Director of Marketing and Public Relations
Cultural Alliance of Fairfield County
(203) 256-2329

(Norwalk, CT) The Cultural Alliance of Fairfield County (CAFC) is pleased to announce that $30,000 from the State’s Regional Initiative Grant Program (REGI) have been awarded to 8 recipients who work within the 15-town coastal region of Fairfield County.

The State of Connecticut’s Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD), Connecticut Office of the Arts (COA), developed the Regional Initiative Grant Program (REGI), in partnership with the state's nine Designated Regional Service Organizations (DRSOs).The DRSOs, of which CAFC represents coastal Fairfield County, form a statewide network providing cultural leadership at a regional level, as well as manage the REGI Grant process on behalf of the COA.

The FY17 REGI Grants have been awarded to those projects which best fit the parameters of the program which include, in part, a clear collaborative undertaking which will create opportunities to broaden equal access to arts activities and experiences, as well as deepen participation with members of the community. 

David Green, Director of Programs and Membership for CAFC, who oversaw CAFC’s role, stated, “We are thrilled to be announcing this wonderful crop of grants, though relatively small amounts, they can make a tremendous impact on communities, and especially in our schools.” In addition, Kristina Newman-Scott, Director of Culture at COA, in recognizing the state’s role in supporting community arts programs, commented that the REGI Grants ".. reach deep into our communities and reaffirm our commitment to positioning the arts as a catalyst for positive change. We are thankful to our Designated Regional Service Organizations for their partnership and support in this effort.”

The awardees for the FY17 COA REGI Grants in Coastal Fairfield County are as follows:

The Ferguson Library, Stamford, working with New Haven artist David Livingston, and Franklin Street Works, Stamford: What Every American Should Know: A Community Art Project;

Artist Ruben Marroquin, working with the Burroughs Community Center, Bridgeport: INTERWOVEN, a community weaving workshop;

The Greater Bridgeport Latino Network, working with singer, songwriter Rick Reyes, and Frank Borres of Borres Productions: The Puerto Rican Songbook;

Margaret Bodell, Stratford, working with Restore Stratford, fashion designer Neville Wisdom, seamstress Linda St. John, East Street Arts, and the Bridgeport Library: Save the Singers, a Community Mending;

Dr. Judy Gross, The Curiale School, Bridgeport, working with the New England Ballet: Encore, A Ballet Enrichment Cluster;

Westhill High School, Stamford, Robin Konrad, Fine Arts Department Chair, working with Creative Connections: Advancement Via Individual Determination (AVID) International Art Exchange;

Back Country Jazz, Bennie Wallace, Greenwich, working with Bridgeport Public Schools (Superintendent Fran Rabinowitz and Dr. Ralph Paladino, Principal, Barnum School of Excellence): Thelonious Monk Centennial Concerts;

Artist Liz Squillace, Bridgeport, working with Bridgeport Generation Now! and Bridgeport Downtown Special Services District: Painted Stairway.

The grants were reviewed by a panel of five individuals, selected by CAFC, who represent the geography and cultural activity in the region. FY17 reviewers were: Jane Davila, Artist (Nest Arts Factory), Bridgeport; Pamela Kuhn,Singer and Director of the Master Singers Chorus, Greenwich: Jeff Mueller, Gallery Director at Silvermine Arts Center, New Canaan; Lou Ursone, Executive & Artistic Director of Curtain Call Theatre, Stamford; and Susan Wallerstein, Educator and Chair of the Norwalk Arts Commission, Norwalk.
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Media Contact: Jennifer Bangser, 
Jennifer@CulturalAllianceFC.org or 203.256.2329
The Cultural Alliance of Fairfield County is supported, in part, by:
Gate Lodge at Mathews Park, 301 West Ave, Norwalk, CT 06850, United States
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