For months, Newtown residents and well-wishers alike have wondered who will receive the nearly $10 million in donations sent to the Sandy Hook School Support Fund from around the world.
Now three Newtown residents are among those tapped to make the call. They're among the Board of Directors of the Newtown-Sandy Hook Community Foundation, set up to oversee distribution of funds raised by the venture, a joint effort of Newtown Savings Bank and the United Way of Western Connecticut.
- Monsignor Robert Weiss of St. Rose of Lima Catholic Church
- Former Newtown Finance Director Benjamin Spragg
- Newtown Attorney Anne Ragusa
- Joseph DiCandido, President of Nutek Aerospace Corp. in New Milford
- Danbury Hospital Psychiatry Chair Dr. Charles R. Herrick
Newtown Selectman Will Rodgers chaired the transition team to develop the foundation, whose advisers included former U.S. Senator Joe Lieberman. Lieberman will continue serving as a an unpaid adviser to the foundation.
"I think we did a great job integrating the information we gathered from other national tragedy sites with recommendations from the local community, which will properly position the Foundation to make educated spending decisions," he said. "We acted quickly and were cognizant of ongoing developments in Newtown as we formed the Foundation and recruited well-respected Directors, so that the Foundation can begin its work to assist the community on a long road to recovery."
The Sandy Hook School Support Fund is expected to gain additional visibility during the Daytona 500, when racing star Michael Waltrip will drive a car emblazoned with the number 26 and information on donating to the fund. Rodgers told the Danbury News-Times he expects a fundraising kick after the Daytona 500.