Tag Archives: Cigna

White Coat Gala On A Husky Blue High

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uconnwhite4uconnwhite3You would be hard pressed to find a happier crowd than the one at the Connecticut Convention Center Saturday.

Those at the UConn Foundation’s annual UConn White Coat Gala were still on a “Husky High,” basking in dual NCAA championships and celebrating three honorees who have gone above and beyond when it comes to support UConn Health.

“There is a lot to smile about tonight,” said UConn president Susan Herbst, who traded in UConn blue and sports tee shirts for a slinky black sequined gown. “It’s a greauconnwhite2t time for the health center and the university.”

Selected for the 2014 Carole and Ray Neag Medal of Honors were philanthropists, Atty. Richard and Jane Lublin, UConn Auxiliary Health Center president Irene Engel, and Cigna, represented at the gala by Dr. Dick Salmon.

“I went back to work at UConn when there was no UConn Health Center. I worked as a nurse in the McCook Hospital,” recalled Engel, referring to UConn Health Center’s  first home in Hartford.  A cancer survivor, Engel sported a garduconnwhite5enia wrist corsage, a sign, she said, from her late husband.

“He always gave me gardenias on special occasions,” she said. “A friend of ours insisted I must have one for tonight and I feel like he is with me.”

The Lublins, founding title sponsors of the White Coat Gala, are well-known for their uconnwhite1philanthropy.

“We just wanted to do something to fight cancer,” said Richard Lublin about the couple’s tireless financial and personal commitment to UConn. “It is hard though, shoveling so much money to find a cure for cancer and still not making progress,” he said. “But we will keep giving because my desire is to see it wiped out forever.”

The sold-out crowd was treated to “up close and personal” look at the championship trophies and to round out the party, there was WTIC broadcaster, Joe D’Ambrosio, better known as “the Voice of the Huskies.”

“The dual win was so unexpected,” said the tuxedoed D’Ambrosio who emceed the event. “But it feels so good.”

For more pictures go here.




Poland/Capelle Are Now A Married Power Pair

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polandwedHartford’s list of power couples just increased by one.

The new “couple” with clout is Hartford Public Library’s President/CEO and Hartford Board of Education chairman Matt Poland, and Cigna exec Jeff Capelle. They officially tied the knot on Saturday night.

The two may be the newest married couple, but could hold the record for longevity when it comes to courting. They met at a housewarming 18 years ago and have been a couple ever since.

But back to the wedding. The nuptials were held at the Wadsworth Atheneum with about 100 guests looking on. Officiating was Hartford Mayor Pedro Segarra, who attended with his spouse Charlie Ortiz, together another of the city’s “dynamic duos. “

And among the guests, yet another formidable pair, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy and his wife, Greater Hartford Arts Council president/CEO Cathy Malloy.

But it was all about the newlyweds and the party after the “I dos” were said.

The reception was held in the museum’s Avery Court, a black, white and red décor with a buffet dinner and more clinking champagne glasses than could be counted.

Among the gifts? Two commissioned seascapes of the Provincetown shoreline, courtesy of a group of friends who know how much the couple loves that Cape Cod town.

And among the toasts, a most heartfelt one from Poland’s daughter Maureen Lynch. She and her husband are scheduled to have their first baby, and Poland’s first grandbaby, in March.  

“Now I have two great dads,” she said, in one of several emotional toasts made to the couple. “And I can’t wait to two great grandpas.”  


American School For the Deaf Kicks Off Capital Campaign

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If star power can help a cause, the American School for the Deaf is off to a good start when it comes to raising money for its new building project at its West Hartford campus.

Headed by honorary chair, Liam McGee, board chair, president and CEO of The Hartford, the school’s Foundations for the Future Campaign is seeking to raise millions to help offset costs for the new project that will mean a new school building and additional services for hearing impaired students.

“The American School for the Deaf is a great asset that does wonderful work,” said McGee, who hosted the reception at The Hartford for a select group of guests that included Farmington  Bank chairman, president, CEO and campaign chair John Patrick,  Cigna president David Cordani, Attorney General George Jepsen, First Lady Cathy Malloy, Douglas Hyland of the New Britain Museum of American Art and Jennifer Holmes of the Hartford Foundation for Public Giving.

 “The school is a wonderful part of our community,” he said noting the location where The Hartford building is located now, was the original site of the 200-year-old school. The site is marked by the “Alice” statue, a rendering of the school’s first student, Alice Cogswell, who was the daughter of Mason Fitch Cogswell, one of the school founders.

Special guest at the reception hosted by McGee was Rebecca “Bex” Freund, great-granddaughter of the famed, late G. Fox & Co. head, Beatrice Fox Auerbach, who was on the school board of directors.

“I’m a little bit nervous about speaking at this,” said Freund, who is deaf and uses a translator. “But I think my great-grandmother would be very proud,” added Freund, whose grandmother, Georgette Koopman and her mother, Beatrice “Trice” Fox Koopman also served on the ASD board.

The building plan calls for razing the stately, brick Galludet Hall, sorely in need of expensive renovations that make saving the building prohibitive.

But the bricks will go on.

The school’s Executive Director Edward Peltier said staff, alumni and supporters are talking about different ways to repurpose the bricks so they are still part of the new look on the campus.





Cigna Helps Malta House

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Eleven Cigna volunteers stepped up recently to help patients of the Malta House of Care Free Mobile Clinic. The volunteers, led by Sue Glucksman and Paul Sanford, collected items for a tag sale they manned in the Cigna cafeteria, then used the proceeds to purchase flowers and boxes to spruce up the registration areas at the clinic’s site at St. Augustine’s Church in Hartford’s South End. Malta House is a mobile unit that travels to several locations around the city to provide free medical care to individuals who have no health insurance. Volunteers included those standing, Jenny Euting, left, Hamani Franklin, Father Jose Mercado, pastor, Saint Augustine’s Church, Janet Whitehead, Tracy LeSure, Mike Rogers, Graham Kist, Paul Sanford, Paul Williams and Michael Sturmer. Seated are Xiomara Anderson, left, and Sue Glucksman.