On Thursday, May 11, 2017, Marrakech held its 27th Annual Founders’ Award Ceremony at Fantasia in North Haven. There were 298 people in attendance at this event to honor several Marrakech supporters and employees. Individuals and organizations awarded that evening exemplified the principles and philosophy of the founders of Marrakech through their actions. Those qualities include commitment, dedication, a “can-do” attitude and involvement in a visionary project aimed at creating positive change in the community. The impact that can be made on the lives of many by just one small act or gesture was felt by all attendees by the end of the night.
Several awards and special recognitions were given throughout the evening. These included special board recognition to Diane Young-Turner and Moshe Sieve, M.D., special recognition of Diane Vece, Lydia Taylor, Albert Vasseur and Laurencet Glenn, the Academy Award to Guy Veillette, Employer of the Year Award to PhoenixSongs Biologicals, Inc. In Branford, the Arthur L. Ratner Accessibility Award to the Arts Council of Greater New Haven, the Suzanne N. Jovin Volunteer of the Year award to Jeff Euben, the Youth Award to Jacob Botwick-Ries and Daniel Zackin, the Community Partner Award to Special Olympics Connecticut, and the Founders’ Award to Rosemarie Burton. Also recognized were employees with 5, 10, 15, 20 and 25 years of service.
Marrakech was founded in 1971 by two Yale students, Susan Waisbren and Frances Brody with help from Dr. Seymour B. Sarason. They recognized the need for programs that allowed individuals with disabilities to live and work in their own community. All three founders passed on the mission to provide residential, employment, support, referral and advocacy services to people with disabilities and people with similar service needs, to assist them in exercising their human rights as citizens and as contributing members of society.
Marrakech President & CEO Heather LaTorra ® with Founders’ Awardee Rosemarie Burton of By Your Side Coaching North Carolina. Photo Credit: Jennifer Carter