WestConn Society Luncheon honors Nurnbergers

Nancy and David Nurnberger received the WCSU Foundation Community Service Award from last year’s recipients Dianne and Bob Yamin at the annual WestConn Society Luncheon held March 28, 2012, at the Matrix Corporate Center in Danbury. In accepting the award, David described two young women from the jungles of southern Mexico who have gained the ability to pursue their dream of attending college thanks to Simply Smiles, Inc., a charitable organization founded by his son, Bryan Nurnberger. He offered a heartfelt testament to the charity’s work in improving the daily lives and building bright futures for impoverished children and assured his audience that Western has an important role to play in changing lives.

The Nurnbergers have been active volunteers in the Danbury community for many years. David has served for four years as chairman of the WCSU Foundation Board of Directors. The couple recently established the David and Nancy Nurnberger Scholarship Fund dedicated to provide annual grants for education students who plan to pursue teaching careers.

The annual WestConn Society Luncheon has been a fixture at the university for 31 years, celebrating donors to the WCSU Foundation who help to make possible many programs and scholarships at Western. President James W. Schmotter offered welcoming remarks, and guests viewed a video about the building now under construction on the Westside campus, slated for completion in 2014, to house programs of the School of Visual and Performing Arts. Introducing the award honorees, Schmotter lauded the Nurnbergers for the example they have set as community guardians.

Dr. Abbey Zink, interim dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, was the keynote speaker at the event attended by more than 120 donors. She presented a video and lecture on WCSU’s “Building a Bridge to Improve Student Success” program, the nationally recognized outreach project in the Danbury and Bethel school systems to promote enhanced preparation of middle and high school students for future college studies. The program’s effectiveness has been demonstrated by a dramatic decline in the number of Danbury and Bethel students who are required to take remedial writing and math coursework as entering freshmen at WCSU and other universities. Praxair and other local corporations have been major supporters of the Bridge program.

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Danbury attorney Bob Yamin (left) presents David and Nancy Nurnberger (center) with the WCSU Foundation Community Service Award. At right are Danbury probate judge Hon. Dianne Yamin and university President James Schmotter.