5th Annual American Dream Awards Gala Dinner to Honor Members of the Immigrant Community

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5th Annual American Dream Awards Gala Dinner to Honor Members of the Immigrant Community

By Emanuela Palmares

The New American Dream Foundation Inc. (TNADF), a 501(c)(3) organization, will host and celebrate the 5th anniversary of its Annual American Dream Awards Gala on Saturday, September 22, 2018 at 6:00 PM at the Amber Room Colonnade in Danbury. The event features four award categories: Lifetime, Leadership, Veteran and the American Dream Awards, recognizing community members who promote our nation’s rich immigrant history, highlighting the cultural, social and economic contributions of all immigrants, and the core American values of equal opportunity, progress and freedom in the areas of education and civic engagement.

Honorees of the following categories were selected by the New American Dream Foundation:

The American Dream Lifetime Achievement Award – recognizes individuals whose life journey is the embodiment of the American Dream.

2018 American Dream Lifetime Achievement Award recipient:

Mr. Peter Hearty of the Greater Danbury Irish Cultural Center, and Celtic Cross Pipe & Drum of Danbury Presented by AARPConnecticut.

American Dream Leadership Award – recognizes three individuals and/or organizations that have taken the lead in supporting members of our community in the three The New American Dream Foundation focus areas: health, education and civic engagement.

2018 American Dream Leadership Award recipients:

  • Honorable Thomas Saadi – Commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Veterans Affairs
  • Jessica Coronel – Assistant Director, Danbury High School, Danbury Public Schools Collaborative/Upward Bound Program
  • Nelson Merchan – Connecticut Small Business Development Center Advisor
  • Patti Keckeisen – Co-Director of the National Parent Leadership Institute

American Dream Veteran Award winner:

2018 American Dream Veteran Award – honors individuals who are serving or have served in the military, made the commitment to defend our country before becoming a U.S. citizen and faced many challenges along their journey to achieve their American Dream.

Danbury Police Officer Hector Rodriguez – a Colombian native who became a citizen after serving in the U.S. Army following the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

The American Dream Awards

The nomination process for the 2018 American Dream Awards began last February and ended on June 25. There are two categories to the awards that were open to the public for nomination: American Dream Person of the Year and American Dream Students of the Year.

Eight finalists for the Person of the Year and the Students of the Year categories will receive two tickets to attend the gala. The four winners, revealed at the gala, will receive $2,000 and the American Dream Awards statue, and will have their names permanently displayed on a plaque in Danbury City Hall honoring Tribuna’s American Dream Awards.

Tickets to the Gala

Tickets are $100.00 per person and include cocktail hour, followed by a three-course dinner, cash bar, dancing and the American Dream Awards ceremony, filled with inspiring life stories celebrating the contributions that generations of immigrants have made to our region and to our country in the pursuit of their American Dream.

Tickets sales will benefit Mission Health Day – a day of free health screenings and other community services for the uninsured and the income challenged, hosted by Western Connecticut Health Network, Western Connecticut State University and The New American Dream Foundation. A portion of the ticket cost is tax deductible.

To buy tickets, tables and ads in the event booklet, visit: www.tribunaamericandreamawards.com/shop

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About Mission Health Day

Mission Health Day – a day of free health screenings and other community services for the uninsured and the income challenged, hosted by Western Connecticut Health Network and Western Connecticut State University, held in October at the Bill Williams Gym at the WCSU downtown campus.

About the Gala and The New American Dream Foundation

On April 19, 2014, in celebration of its 15th Anniversary, Tribuna created the American Dream Awards Gala, an annual awards ceremony designed to recognize members of the immigrant community who share in the Tribuna founder’s story.

In 2016, the event’s growth over the years sparked the creation of The New American Dream Foundation, Inc. a 501(c)(3) organization, created to serve as the philanthropic arm of Tribuna Newspaper, to promote our nation’s rich immigrant history, highlighting the cultural, social and economic contributions of all immigrants, and the core American values of equal opportunity, progress and freedom in the areas of education, health and civic engagement.

TNADF aims to provide financial support to organizations that share in those values and focus, and to inspiring members of the community through the American Dream Awards Gala & Scholarship.

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August 1, 2018

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