Month: September 2012

R.I.P. Connie Finnegan

SMA wishes to express our deepest sympathy to the family of Connie Finnegan on their loss.

R.I.P. Jerry Vernon

SMA wishes to express our deepest sympathy to the family of Jerry Vernon on their loss.

Darien Songsters resume rehearsals on October 17, 2012

The group will be rehearsing for a joint venture with the Blue Notes.

Contact Joe Holmes if you are interested in joining this stout-hearted group.

Speaker — October 17, 2012
Dr. Sherman Bull

Dr. Sherman Bull, noted local surgeon, is an avid mountain climber and has conquered mountains all over the world. He will talk to us about his climbs in the Himalayas with disabled soldiers and their life changing experiences.

Contact: W. Ball

Our Video Team

Tommy Thompson

George Brookner

Bill Sterns

Tommy is our video recording guru, George is our DVD author and creator, Bill is our DVD librarian.  All DVDs in our SMA library are free to check out and view at home in case a member missed a meeting or would like to review a speaker of interest.

Speaker — October 10, 2012
Burdin Hickok

Burdin Hickock

Burdin Hickock

Burdin Hickok will talk about his experiences as Economic Development Section Head, Senior Banking and Finance Advisor, U.S. Department of State, US Embassy; Kirkuk PRT, IRAQ.

From 2008 to 2011, Mr. Hickok was a senior member of the  Kirkuk Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT), which  designed and implemented  over $100 million in development assistance for infrastructure projects.  His accomplishments earned the State Department’s Superior Honor Award, for “sustained, outstanding performance.”

The PRTs in Iraq are civilian-led organizations that partner with the U.S. military and Government of Iraq in the provinces to help create political progress and economic development as a way of providing long-term stability for Iraq.

Kirkuk has been a particularly important province due to its status as a disputed province between Kurds and Arabs. Outside of the Oil & Gas industry, agriculture and agribusiness comprise over 80% of the economic activity in Kirkuk province.

Prior to his State Department assignment, Mr. Hickock had a long career in global capital markets as an investment strategist and fixed-income trader on Wall Street.  He will describe some of his team’s successes in a presentation entitled, “Planting Seeds of Hope: Stories of U.S. Success in Iraq.

Contact: M. Skala

Speaker — October 3, 2012
Captain Drew Bissett

Captain Drew Bissett, a Navy SEAL in the Vietnam War, is currently engaged in the training and development of SEALs using a “mentoring” program to facilitate the preparation of candidates to succeed in the challenging Seals’s training program. Before the mentoring program, which Drew was key in the initiation and development, the success rate was in the 20-30% range and the use of mentoring raised it to the 60-70% range.

Contact: W. Ball

We Remember — 2011 – 2012

Members who passed away during the 2011-2012 term of the Darien Senior Men’s Association:

Fred Farwell,

Bob Ferguson,

Sal Giarranta,

Jim Harris,

John Hinrichs,

Don Miller,

Phil Morehouse,

Jack Ritchey,

Phillips Terhune

Speaker — September 26, 2012
Christopher “Kip” Bergstrom

Christopher “Kip” Bergstrom, Deputy Commissioner, Department of Economic and Community Development, will talk about Connecticut’s new tourism initiative. Kip is the Executive Director of the Commission on Culture and Tourism. Upon the consolidation of this function into the Department of Economic and Community Development, Kip assumed additional responsibilities as part of DECD Commissioner Catherine Smith’s team. Bergstrom was the Executive Director of the Stamford Urban Redevelopment Commission, a position he has held since 2008.

Contact: M. Skala