Month: November 2016 (page 1 of 2)

December 21, 2016
U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal
Key issues facing our state and country

Senator Richard Blumenthal

Senator Richard Blumenthal

Richard Blumenthal, United States Senator for Connecticut, serving his first term, will talk about the key issues facing the state and the country.

Previously, he served five terms as Connecticut’s attorney general where his law enforcement for consumer protection, environmental stewardship, labor rights and personal privacy helped reshape the role of state attorney general’s nationwide. As attorney general he advocated for reforms in health insurance and worked to eradicate corruption in state government. He fought unfair utility rate charges and air pollution causing acid rain.

From 1977 to 1981, he served as a U.S. attorney for Connecticut. He also served in the Connecticut House of Representatives from 1984 to 1987 and the Connecticut State Senate from 1987 to 1990.

Senator Blumenthal graduated from Harvard College and Yale Law School, where he was editor-in-chief of the Yale Law Journal. He served in the United States Marine Corps Reserves from 1970 to 1976 and was honorably discharged with the rank of sergeant.

Arranged by Bob Fiske

Blood and Sand
Alex von Tunzelmann

bloodsandOver sixteen extraordinary days in October and November 1956, the twin crises of Suez and Hungary pushed the world to the brink of a nuclear conflict and what many at the time were calling World War III. Blood and Sand is a revelatory new history of these dramatic events, for the first time setting both crises in the context of the Arab–Israeli conflict, and the treacherous power politics of imperialism and oil.
Blood and Sand tells this story hour by hour, with a fascinating cast of characters including Gamal Abdel Nasser, Anthony Eden, Dwight D. Eisenhower, Nikita Khrushchev, Christian Pineau, Imre Nagy and David Ben-Gurion. It is a tale of conspiracy and revolutions, spies and terrorists, kidnappings and assassination plots, the fall of the British Empire and the rise of American hegemony. Blood and Sand is essential to our understanding of the modern Middle East and resonates powerfully with the problems of oil control, religious fundamentalism and international unity that face the world today.

Recommended by Tom Reifenheiser

Hiking Greenwich Point Park
Thursday, December 1, 2016, 10:30 AM

“Hiking” Greenwich Point Park,
6 Tod’s Driftway, Greenwich
Thursday, December 1, 2016

greenwichpointparkWe will be walking Greenwich Point Park on Thursday, December1 at 10.30 am. Note that this is an hour later than our usual start time of 9.30 am.

Greenwich Point is a beautiful peninsula surrounded on three sides by Long Island Sound. The walking trail is completely flat and does not require any special skills other than a desire to walk amid some pretty spectacular scenery. We will be doing the full circuit of about 3 miles in about 1 ½ hours.

Following the walk we will have lunch at the highly recommended Italian Restaurant Applausi Osteria Toscana,199 Sound Beach Avenue, Old Greenwich, Conn. Take a look at the menu here.

Directions: Google Greenwich Point for the best directions.

Take Exit 5 off the South bound I-95. At the end of the exit ramp make a sharp right onto Rt 1 and then at the first traffic light make a right onto Sound Beach Road. Continue on Sound Beach for 1.8 miles, then at the T junction make right on Shore Road which becomes Tods Driftway after 1.3 miles. You enter Greenwich Point Park through a stone gateway and park in the first parking lot on the right where we will meet.

This park is open only for Greenwich Residents during the season, but this being off-season anyone can enter. However incoming cars are checked to make sure there are no dogs as they are not allowed in the park.

Clothing: It is usually quite windy at Greenwich Point and will probably be chilly as well. Be appropriately clad. Walking will warm you up and it should be invigorating and fun. All are welcome.

( Rain date: Friday December 2 at 10.30am)

Contact: Sunil Saksena 203-561-8601

Ike’s Bluff
President Eisenhower’s Secret Battle to Save the World

Evan Thomas

ikesbluffEvan Thomas’s startling account of how the underrated Dwight Eisenhower saved the world from nuclear holocaust. Upon assuming the presidency in 1953, Dwight Eisenhower set about to make good on his campaign promise to end the Korean War. Yet while Eisenhower was quickly viewed by many as a doddering lightweight, behind the bland smile and simple speech was a master tactician. To end the hostilities, Eisenhower would take a colossal risk by bluffing that he might use nuclear weapons against the Communist Chinese, while at the same time restraining his generals and advisors who favored the strikes. Ike’s gamble was of such magnitude that there could be but two outcomes: thousands of lives saved, or millions of lives lost. A tense, vivid and revisionist account of a president who was then, and still is today, underestimated, IKE’S BLUFF is history at its most provocative and thrilling.

Recommended by Tom Reifenheiser.

Emergency Meeting Cancellations

If the Darien schools are closed because of weather conditions, there will be no DMA meeting on that day.

If the Darien schools either open on a delayed schedule, or close on an early schedule, the DMA meeting will be held at the usual time on that day.

School closings are announced text crawls on Optimum News12 television, and on Optimum Channel 6, they are also announced on local radio stations WSTC(1400AM) and WLNK(1350AM).

December 14, 2016
Jon Zagrodzky, Chairman,
Darien Board of Finance

Jon Zagrodsky

Board of Finance Chairman Jon Zagrodzky (image from Darien TV79 video)

Jon Zagrodzky, chairman of the Town of Darien Board of Finance, will summarize his comments to the December 12, 2016, State of the Town meeting.  That meeting covers key town financial issues, including the outlook for the 2018-2019 budget process, which starts in January, and the possible impact of Hartford’s difficult financial situation on the Town of Darien.

The elected seven-member Board of Finance is responsible for the town’s $130 million annual budget. Jon also serves as a member of the Darien Town and Police Pension boards and was president of the Darien Historical Society from 2011-2015. He is a member of the Board of Trustees of the Forman School, a Litchfield (Connecticut) high school that specializes in children with learning differences.

Jon is a managing director of Oak Hill Capital Partners and serves as chief administrative officer and chief compliance officer. He is responsible for finance, operations, human resources, administration, information technology and business planning.

Prior to joining Oak Hill, he was an associate principal and director of financial planning and analysis at McKinsey & Company.

He earned a B.A. degree in economics and romance languages from Washington & Lee University and an M.B.A. degree from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.

Arranged by Tom Lom

December 7, 2016
Sylvia Reiss
The stone walls of Connecticut

Connecticut stone wallSylvia Reiss will talk about “Our Amazing Stone Walls: What They Are and Where They Are.”

A local resident, stone wall enthusiast and historian, Sylvia will present a fascinating, educational and amusing look at these historical structures. Stone walls are the signature archaeological legacy of Darien and New England itself. They can be seen along roadsides, far into the woods, across back yards and between houses. The stone walls delineate and define northeastern America as surely as the Appian Way says Italy or the Great Wall says China.

Darien is fortunate to have within its 23.4 square-miles many miles of these walls that have for centuries characterized our town’s agrarian heritage. It is the story of millions of fieldstones, tossed, stacked and laid; of single walls, double walls capped or coped; of rare walls and mysteries that will be revealed during Sylvia’s presentation.

Sylvia Reiss is a former teacher, retired antiques dealer, past president of the Antiques Council, and tag-along historian with her husband Ken Reiss, who is the Darien Historical Society’s historian.

Arranged by Tom Haacke

November-December 2016 Newsletter

View  November-December 2016 DMA Newsletter  PDF file.

An Officer and a Spy
Robert Harris

officerspyRobert Harris returns to the thrilling historical fiction he has so brilliantly made his own. This is the story of the infamous Dreyfus affair told as a chillingly dark, hard-edged novel of conspiracy and espionage. Paris in 1895. Alfred Dreyfus, a young Jewish officer, has just been convicted of treason, sentenced to life imprisonment at Devil’s Island, and stripped of his rank in front of a baying crowd of twenty-thousand. Among the witnesses to his humiliation is Georges Picquart, the ambitious, intellectual, recently promoted head of the counterespionage agency that “proved” Dreyfus had passed secrets to the Germans. At first, Picquart firmly believes in Dreyfus’s guilt. But it is not long after Dreyfus is delivered to his desolate prison that Picquart stumbles on information that leads him to suspect that there is still a spy at large in the French military. As evidence of the most malignant deceit mounts and spirals inexorably toward the uppermost levels of government, Picquart is compelled to question not only the case against Dreyfus but also his most deeply held beliefs about his country, and about himself. Bringing to life the scandal that mesmerized the world at the turn of the twentieth century, Robert Harris tells a tale of uncanny timeliness––a witch hunt, secret tribunals, out-of-control intelligence agencies, the fate of a whistle-blower–richly dramatized with the singular storytelling mastery that has marked all of his internationally best-selling novels

Recommended by Joe Spain

November 30, 2016
Art Gottlieb
Was Hiroshima Necessary?

Art Gottlieb

Art Gottlieb

Art Gottlieb, a local historian on political and military history, will talk on whether the use of the atomic bomb was justified in order to bring the war in the Pacific to a speedier conclusion.

Art is a professional curator of naval history and Technical Director of Exhibits at the Intrepid Sea-Air-Space Museum in New York City. He has worked with veterans of all services creating exhibits accurately, illustrating the history of 20th-century warfare and has helped recover scores of artifacts from warships slated for demolition.

He coordinates with all branches of the armed services to preserve historic ships, aircraft and armor from around the world. Art also serves as a counselor and certified senior advisor in Norwalk, Conn.

He uses his professional talents to address the needs of aging veterans and their families and offers pro bono counseling services to soldiers returning from Iraq and Afghanistan.

He served as an auxiliary officer of the United States Coast Guard for 17 years and, for four years, was commander of Flotilla 7-2, 1st District (Southern Region), Sector Long Island Sound North.

Arranged by Tom Lom.

2016 Silvermine Challenge
June 24, 2016

The 2016 Silvermine Challenge DMA vs. Senior Men’s Club of New Canaan (SMCNC) was held at the Silvermine Golf Club on June 24th. This was the fifth consecutive year that this friendly yet spirited competition has been held. This year’s competition ended up in a 15 – 15 tie. DMA leads the series 3 – 1 with 1 tie.

The DMA Golf Team comprised the following members:

  • Dave McCollum
  • Tom Haack
  • Jim Crane
  • Jim Kelly
  • Woody Woodworth
  • Bud Bain
  • Tom Reifenheiser
  • Fred Conze
  • Michael Poler
  • Gunnar Edelstein
  • Kevin Davidson
  • Kevin Monahan
  • Mike Brennan
  • Austin Schraff
  • Spike Reed
  • Joe Holmes
  • Alex Garnett
  • George Gilliam
  • David Mace
  • Peter Carnes

Dave McCollum won the Closest to the Pin Award.

Denny Devere (Captain)

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David M. Walker Presentation — U.S. Federal, State and Local Fiscal Challenges and How To Address Them

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Download PowerPoint Presentation

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