Polaris Awards Attract A Crowd For LGH Party

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It was one happy crowd at the Hartford Marriott Downtown Thursday night as members, supporters, friends gathered for the Leadership Greater Hartford’s 35th anniversary and 10th annual Polaris Awards Celebration.

The organization had plenty to celebrate given its stellar track record of providing training to “build leaders while building community.” And while there were lots of awards to give out and lots to celebrate, it was Wednesday’s presidential debate starring Democratic President Barack Obama and Republican contender Mitt Romney that was the topic of most conversations.

“I was so disappointed in President Obama,” said Betty Rankin, who works for ING, one of the evening’s sponsors. “He was passive but maybe he had his wedding anniversary on his mind.”

“I was not really disappointed in him, but he didn’t seem to be himself,” added Ines Casares, wife of Hartford Fire Chief Edward Casares.

“He’s pacing himself,” chimed in the chief. “There are still more debates to go.”

More than 300 people attended the party that included a giant-sized, hard to miss,  turquoise birthday “cake” that served as the centerpiece for the cocktail reception. CT1 Media and the Hartford  Courant were platinum sponsors for the event.

For LGH president Ted Carroll, the evening was a special one because of his long tenure with the organization that has helped turn out dozens and dozens of leaders who over the years, were part of the organization’s Quest, Third Age Initiative and American Leader Forum classes.

“I was part of the class of 1985,” said Carroll, president for the past 27 years. “There was only one program when Leadership Greater Hartford Started and now there are 10.”

Winners and categories included:

Overall Category: Third Age Initiative, Engaging Older Adults As Community Leaders

Arts & Culture: Holiday Skate at Bushnell Park

Basic Human Needs: Freshplace Market Food Pantry

Housing / Community Development: The Neighborhood Gang – Lozada Park Playground

Youth / Education: Readers as Leaders Student Reading Program

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