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Announcements - Current Newsletter Aug 7, 2018
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Middletown Rotary Club




August 7, 2018



President Eric brought the meeting to order at 12:20 pm with the pledge, song, and a reading from Howard Reid of the Rotary Code of Conduct.

Guests today:

  • Izzy Guy, guest of Lisa Santangelo
  • Jonathon Zuromski, soon to be member
  • Jeff Pugliese, Vice President, Middlesex County Chamber of Commerce (speaker) 


  • Eric Rodko announced that the August Board meeting will be held on Wednesday at 5:30 PM at his office.
  • Helene Vartelas reminded members who have not yet paid their dues that it is important they do so as soon as possible.
  • Eric encouraged members to attend next week’s Club assembly at which time Jonathon Zuromski will be inducted, Rotary service awards will be presented in person to Welles Guilmartin, Dave Kelsey, and Jim Misenti, Carmela Gagnon will review planning for the fall auction, and Sue Murphy will speak about the Thanksgiving project.
  • Eric presented Lisa Santangelo with a Paul Harris Award for her milestone contributions to the Rotary Foundation.
  • Kevin Wilhelm asked members to sign up for service at the Soup Kitchen on upcoming Wednesdays 11:30 – 1 PM. Online signup is also available. 


  • High: Pat Gomola
  • Low: Izzy Guy, donated to clean water projects

King of Clubs:

  • Patti Vassia and Laura Falt drew without success

Happy Dollars:

  • Eric Rodko for our guests and his upcoming 50 trip and the response to his inquiries from the Green Bay Packers and New York Giants.
  • Lois Muraro for the meeting and our guests
  • Kevin Wilhelm for Jeff P and for soup kitchen volunteers
  • Art Meyers for Laura Falt’s publicity efforts
  • Helene Vartelas for the monument project
  • Patti Vassia for learning about Laura’s PR efforts and Kevin
  • Keith Wiemert for our speaker and guests
  • Laura Falt for our speaker and the NFL
  • Nancy Bruno for guests
  • Izzy Guy for the club and our clean water efforts
  • Lisa Santangelo for our speaker and for the many election volunteers
  • Kevin an additional dollar for Lisa’s Paul Harris award
  • Laura also an additional dollar for Lisa
  • Dan Litwin for Lisa’s Paul Harris, arugula, and our new member Jonathon
  • Cheryl Duey for her daughter being stationed in Baltimore and the opportunity to see her


Jeff Pugliese presented an introduction to the Middlesex Chamber’s new MEWS+CO initiative, an important effort to develop an innovation ecosystem for Middlesex County. Located on the second floor of the Chamber’s Main St. headquarters, the project’s goal is to get entrepreneurs into a collaborative environment, breaking down the silos that too often retard innovation and growth. The location includes 650 sf of co-working space, with high speed internet access and high tech equipment. The project will connect participants with a variety of helpful resources from the City’s business and academic communities, including Wesleyan graduates who are successful entrepreneurs. This will be done through workshops, events, meet and greets, and open hours which match participants schedules, 8 AM to 8 PM seven days a week, as well as broader access for Tier 1 members (there are three levels of membership). It will also allow budding entrepreneurs to use the Chamber’s address for their startup activities. The initiative has been funded by Wesleyan, the City of Middletown, Liberty Bank, Middlesex Hospital, and CT Next, a network serving entrepreneurs. Further information about the initiative can be found on its web site at themewsplus.co


Jeff also reviewed upcoming Chamber activities, including Randy Edsall’s breakfast appearance, as well as that of the president of FedEx on the opening day of the new facility, Motorcycle Mania, and the Expo at the Red Lion (formerly the Radisson, etc.).

The meeting was concluded at 1:25 PM with the Four-Way Test.

Respectfully submitted,

Howard Reid