This year, Baxter Urist 1st VP, is Speaker Chairman.
Members who have potential speakers should contact Baxter Urist
We also want to thank Dick Kalt, who has produced these very informative Y's Men Virtual Videos
Older Meeting videos before 2/11/21 are located in our Members Only Section .
Y'S MEN MEETING OF MAY 19, 2022 WITH JEN TOOKER AND SAM NESTOR
Westport's and Weston's First Selectwomen, Jennifer Tooker and Samantha Nestor, joined the Y’s Men on Thursday, May 19. Jennifer Tooker was elected to her office last November. She had previously been Second Selectwoman, and served on the Board of Finance, the Board of Education and the Westport Conservation Commission. Samantha Nestor became Weston’s First Selectwoman when Chris Spaulding resigned last August. She was elected to her own term in November. Nestor had previously been a member of the Board of Education and chair of the Town's Communications and Marketing Advisory Committee. Watch now as our First Selectwomen present their vision, discuss their hopes and challenges and discuss their plans for the coming year. .
Y'S MEN MEETING OF MAY 5, 2022 WITH LISA WEXLER
Lisa Wexler, Westport-Weston District’s Judge of Probate, spoke to Y’s Men on Thursday about her office’s functions. She heads one of 54 probate courts in Connecticut and handles some 3,200 matters a year. Judge Wexler’s office is in Town Hall. Her staff of four all live in Westport or Weston so issues are handled by people who can empathize with the matters. She is also host of an award-winning call-in radio show on WICC, AM 600. She gave up Thursday’s show because her father told her “When Y’s Men ask you to speak you drop everything.” Ms. Wexler offered recommendations about estate planning, including selling or giving away assets we care about while we’re alive to avoid fights over “stuff,” and for those we retain, she said “Suck it up,” and draw up a will with a clear distribution plan. There is a lot more valuable information that will be very helpful; to learn more watch this video now. .
Y'S MEN MEETING OF APRIL 28, 2022 WITH ANJALI McCORMICK
Anjali McCormick, CEO of Westport Weston YMCA last Thursday spoke to Y’s Men about the role of the Y in the community and her vision for the future of what has to be one of Westport’s hidden gems. Ms. McCormick brings a corporate background as well 21 years with the Y in Summit, NJ. She talks about the facility as an “Extraordinary Y.” Her presentation was entitled “Rediscover The Y.” Much of it can also be viewed on the Y’s website: https://westporty.org.
Y'S MEN MEETING OF APRIL 21, 2022 WITH JOHN ROUNTREE
This past Thursday Architect John Rountree spoke about designing energy efficient houses. He is Principal of Rountree Architects, a 26-year-old Westport firm specializing in the design of energy efficient homes. He is a graduate of Syracuse University’s School of Architecture. A 1986 graduate of Syracuse University’s School of Architecture, Rountree believes it essential that we reduce fossil fuel usage because housing generates 40 percent of all carbon emissions. Net Zero Homes are built around two principles -- one passive, the other active. The former is the structure itself, with photovoltaic roof mounted solar panels generating electricity for a structure having 12 inches of insulation in all outer walls, triple pane windows and LED lighting throughout. The active element is a heat pump that heats and air conditions the house and provides its hot water. This video gives you the latest on the methodology employed to gain maximum energy efficiency for your home and he answered many relevant questions and he provided information of great value when considering this important decision. Watch and learn. .
Y'S MEN MEETING OF APRIL 7, 2022 WITH DAVID BRANDT
David Brant, Executive Director of the Aspetuck Land Trust, spoke to Y’s Men Thursday, about Southern Connecticut’s Green Corridor. Brant is a graduate of the University of Michigan. His varied background includes managing a llama ranch in Montana, running an organic farm in Vermont, then starting one of that state’s first Community Supported farms. The Trust’s Green Corridor initiative encompasses 40,000 acres in western Fairfield County that safeguard land, wildlife and water resources, lessen our climate crisis and offer a contiguous habitat and forage areas to vulnerable native species. It’s part of a chain connecting Southern Connecticut’s protected preserves with similar areas and thousands of biodiverse backyards to produce a longer greenway along the eastern US. .
Y'S MEN MEETING OF MARCH 31, 2022 WITH ALAN NEIGHER
Westport attorney Alan Neigher spoke to Y’s Men on Thursday, March 31 about our First Amendment. Neigher has been a principal in his Westport firm since 1980. He is a graduate of Colby College and Boston College Law School. He specializes in media, entertainment and first amendment law. He is a member of the board of the Klein Memorial and president of the Fairfield Theater Company when it opened in 2004. Freedom of speech, freedom of the press, freedom of religion, freedom to peaceably assemble and to petition our government comprise the First Amendment to our Constitution. It and nine other amendments make up our Bill of Rights and were adopted in 1791 to protect Americans from their government. The following video is his most interesting and informative discussion. .
Y'S MEN MEETING OF MARCH 24, 2022 WITH SUSAN GRANGER
It’s Oscar time and Susan Granger joined the Y’s Men on March 24, three days before the golden statuettes are awarded, to preview the ceremony, offer her usually on the money picks and tell us about the seismic changes in the motion picture business. With more than 25 years as an on-air television and radio commentator and entertainment critic, her commentaries, reviews and interviews are distributed around the world by SSG Syndicate. Her reviews are provided locally by https://westportjournal.com. She appeared as a child actress in movies with Abbott & Costello, Red Skelton, Lucille Ball, and Lassie. She studied journalism at Mills College and the University of Pennsylvania. She spoke of the shortening window between theatrical and online releases, and how the increasing investments of producers including Netflix, Apple, and with its just closed purchase of MGM, Amazon, are changing the business. The following video is a most informative and interesting discussion, that you will enjoy. .
Y'S MEN MEETING OF MARCH 10, 2022 WITH BRUCE BECKER
Bruce Becker, president of Becker + Becker, a Westport based green architecture and development firm, spoke to Y's Men on March 10. He discussed the elements and benefits of sustainable redevelopment, using a current project, the conversion of the iconic Marcel Breuer designed Pirelli building in New Haven into the Hotel Marcel, a 165 room boutique facility, as his case study. Breuer was a leading figure of the Brutalist movement, one that used raw, exposed, utilitarian materials such as concrete for massive, institutional projects. The Marcel is 100 percent solar powered, providing all its own electricity, and producing net zero emissions. The hospitality industry is a large emitter of carbon dioxide, which may make Becker’s project a beta test for its interest in sustainable development. .
Y'S MEN MEETING OF MARCH 3, 2022 WITH CAPT. MICHAEL FREDIE
Michael Fredie, Captain, US Coast Guard, spoke to Y’s Men on Thursday, offering a broad brush view of his service. Captain Fredie is the Academy’s Director of Admissions. He is a 1991 graduate whose career includes law enforcement assignments, as well as having been stationed in Los Angeles as the Director of Coast Guard’s Motion Picture office, and its liaison to the film and TV industry. The United States Coast Guard is tasked with enforcing the nation's laws at sea, protecting the marine environment, guarding the nation's coastline and ports, and performing vital life saving missions. This was a very special event as it is the first time the Y’s Men have met as a group, in person, in two years! .
Y'S MEN MEETING OF FEBRUARY 24, 2022 WITH MERYL MOSS
Meryl Moss, founder and president of Meryl Moss Media Relations (merylmossmedia.com), was interviewed by Jay Dirnberger for the Y’s Men. For almost 29 years Moss Media has helped authors reach readers and readers find new books by creating media campaigns for first time and established authors, and for publishers. It also publishes booktrib.com to help readers keep abreast of book news and reviews. And because writing is a solitary profession, her firm helps prepare authors to get comfortable talking about their craft and their book, and to publicize their works, in person and virtually. .
Y'S MEN MEETING OF FEBRUARY 17, 2022 WITH MARK CONTREAS
Mark Contreras, CEO of Connecticut Public, the only state-wide, community-supported public media service, spoke to the Y’s Men on February 17 about the growing role of public media in serving local communities. Connecticut Public is a member station of PBS and NPR and the parent company for CPTV, CPTV Spirit and PBS Kids 24/7 and of Connecticut Public Radio (WNPR). Contreras noted that while newspapers have cut journalists' jobs by more than 50 percent over the last 15 years, public media has added over 1,100 local journalists since 2011, many focused on presenting local news and features. As part of its growth strategy Connecticut Public is broadening its use of digital media to reach a wider audience and serve it in different ways than they have in the past. Contreras is a Harvard MBA who began his career managing newspapers, including having served as senior vice president of E.W. Scripps. He was later named Dean of Quinnipiac’s School of Communications before joining Connecticut Public. .
SPECIAL TUESDAY Y'S MEN MEETING OF FEBRUARY 15, 2022 WITH JIM MARPE
Dewey Loselle asks former First Selectman Jim Marpe to pull back the curtain, to tell Y's Men about some of the things behind what we see, read and know, as well as about some of the things we don’t — about often long and frustrating meetings, perhaps even about the give and take that goes into crafting Westport’s annual budget. Marpe is now twice retired, first in 2002, from Accenture, where he was a senior partner, and now from elected office, after serving eight years on Westport's Board of Education, the last six as its Chair, followed by eight years as Westport's First Selectman. He has also been active in town, as a Board Member of Westport Rotary, a Trustee of the Westport Weston Family YMCA, and a board member of the Greens Farms Congregational Church and of Homes with Hope. Now that he has a bit of time on his hands, we look forward to welcoming Jim back as an active Y's Man. .
Y'S MEN MEETING OF FEBRUARY 10, 2022 WITH BARRY KRESCH AND ANALIESE MOORE
Barry Kresch, president of the EV Club of CT, and Analiese Mione, an influencer with the club, spoke to Y’s Men on Thursday, February 10 via Zoom to introduce us to the how to’s of choosing, purchasing/leasing, driving, charging and maintaining electric vehicles. The Club's mission is to rapidly advance the adoption of EVs in Connecticut through education, events, advocacy and policy changes. The club’s website notes that federal and state incentives are designed to make EVs and their chargers more affordable and accessible to all. If you really want to get the information you need to make the move for your benefit and for all mankind, this is one video you don’t want to miss! .
Y'S MEN MEETING OF FEBRUARY 3, 2022 WITH RYAN VENTURA
Ryan Ventura, a pastor by education, a health care giver at Ridgefield Visiting Nurse Association (RVNA) by profession, spoke to Y’s Men via Zoom on February 3 about how we, as senior citizens, can leave an impact on our next generations. Ventura believes it important that we help our children and grandchildren learn and grow from our experiences, that we strengthen our relationships with them, that we help them build community. This was a very meaningful discussion and well worth watching. .
Y'S MEN MEETING OF JANUARY 27, 2022 WITH PHIL VITELLO
Phil Vitiello returned to Y's Men to talk about Civil War hero Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain, an officer who served with great distinction in the Union Army during the Civil War and later a governor of Maine and president of Bowdoin College. Vitiello is a Civil War historian who previously spoke to Y’s Men about the Confederate submarine CSS Hunley and about the Titanic. Chamberlain was a professor at Bowdoin College. When the Civil War broke out, he earned the Medal of Honor at Little Round Top during the Battle of Gettysburg, and commanded US troops at the Appomattox surrender ceremony. Chamberlain was an extraordinary general and this was an extraordinary presentation. Watch, learn and enjoy! .
Y'S MEN MEETING OF JANUARY 20, 2022 WITH JOHN BRANDT AND ED BLOCH
John Brandt and Ed Bloch spill a few of the beans about their distinguished careers as public relations professionals. John taught English at Staples before enlisting in the US Navy, where he taught remedial English to educationally deficient recruits. After being discharged he began a career in corporate public relations working for companies including Perkin Elmer and AMF. In 1983, he and his wife, Kathy, established Brandt Associates, a marketing communications consultancy that has served more than 40 clients across numerous industries. After graduating from Clark University Ed Bloch entered the US Army where he served as chief editor of a weekly newspaper read by soldiers at Fort Sam Houston in San Antonio, Texas. Following his discharge he became a public relations executive with The Wool Bureau. He moved to Burson-Marsteller, then Carl Byoir Associates, and later moved to the client side, with Stauffer Chemical Company, then The Perkin-Elmer Corporation, where he led their PR programs. .
Y'S MEN MEETING OF JANUARY 19, 2022 WITH ASPETUCK HEALTH DISTRICT
On January 16, Mark Cooper, Director of the Aspetuck Health District was joined by Vanessa Hurta and Mike Vincelli to talk to Y’s Men about COVID and its impact on our community. They focused on COVID-19's impact on people our age, about the delta and omicron variants, and how we can protect ourselves. They discussed vaccines, mask wearing, and social distancing and how they help mitigate hospitalization and mortality as well as testing and the availability and use of home test kits This was extremely informative and if you didn’t attend, you should view this video to see this very important Covid-19 update. .
Y'S MEN MEETING OF JANUARY 13, 2022 WITH DR. ROBERT SELVERSTONE
Robert Selverstone, Ph.D., spoke to Y’s Men on January 13 about couples’ relationships — what we do and don’t do, and how we can improve ours. Dr. Selverstone has conducted more than 1,000 workshops and presentations, written for numerous professional journals, and has appeared on many TV programs. He has practiced in Westport for 40+ years as a psychologist, working with adolescents, adults and couples. As a teacher and psychologist Dr. Selverstone emphasizes personal growth. He asks what do you stand for, what are proper values and how do we live those values? Please enjoy his extremely enlightening presentation. .
Y'S MEN MEETING OF JANUARY 6, 2022 WITH JEFF WARSHAW
Our January 6th meeting featured Connoisseur Media CEO Jeff Warshaw discussing the current state and the future of local radio, the impact of social media, music streaming, new smart dashboards and the importance of local broadcasting and community service. A $15 billion dollar industry reaching over 90% of the population each week, Jeff discusses how his stations address the challenges broadcasters face today. Preceding Jeff’s discussion, award winning producer Andrew Wilk introduced a new video special featuring Broadway stars recorded at the Westport Country Playhouse which will be broadcast on PBS in January. All-in-all, a great meeting not to be missed. .
Y'S MEN MEETING OF DECEMBER 16 WITH DAVID ALAN RICHARDS
Manhattan real estate attorney David Alan Richards represented the railroads for more than 13 years in the donation and conversion of an abandoned Depression Era rail spur into the magnificent public park the High Line is today. On December 16 he walked the Y’s Men through the complex negotiations, contentious personalities and politics behind this unique city landmark. The High Line is a public park built on a 1.45-mile-long elevated rail structure running from Gansevoort St. to 34th St. on Manhattan’s West Side. It is the most popular tourist destination in New York. Join us for this very interesting presentation. .
Y'S MEN MEETING OF DECEMBER 9 WITH KEN BERNHARD
Y'S MEN MEETING OF NOVEMBER 18 WITH LT. COL. RICHARD ANDERSON
Lt. Col. Richard Anderson presented a thorough description of the events leading up to, and the necessity for a well thought out U.S. military plan for engagement in World War II. This was both a history and management discussion that involved the many events and challenges faced by our leaders, and the leadership excellence required for proper entry and ultimate victory. This presentation by Lt. Col. Anderson is one of great interest and value. Listen and learn! .
Y'S MEN MEETING OF NOVEMBER 11 WITH DAVID FITZPATRICK
David is a highly regarded producer and reporter who recently retired from CNN, as he spoke about how cable news reporting has changed the landscape of America. The presentation covers the business, the aspects of news coverage, as well as opinion and commentary. Do not miss this most important presentation as it will educate you about what you see and hear, reported on cable as news and commentary, and its impact on our society today.
Y'S MEN MEETING OF NOVEMBER 4 WITH MARK ALBERTSON
Our meeting of November 4th features Y’s Men’s visiting professor of American History, Mark Albertson. Mark joined us to talk about George Washington’s Farewell Address.
This address remains to be one of the most important in our history. In it Washington set the stage for the two-term presidency, guidance lasting until well into the 20th century — without a law, or Constitutional amendment — and he warned of the dangers of permanent alliances between the United States and foreign nations. Watch now for what you will learn will be most interesting and surprising.
Y'S MEN MEETING OF OCTOBER 28 WITH TONY MCDOWELL
Tony is Executive Director of Earthplace, speaks about the challenge of climate change — what it is, what must be done and what we should do internationally, nationally, locally and personally. It was an informative and motivating discussion with a clear message of how we must prioritize our efforts to save our environment sooner, not later. Do watch this video and learn how you can do your part.
Y'S MEN.10-21-21 WITH RANDY HERBERTSON
Randy is President of the Westport Downtown Association, who will tell us about the new and exciting plans for our downtown area. Many initiatives are underway to enhance our already great downtown area including beautification, events, retail support and more that bring people to Westport. The downtown has garnered almost 40 new stores and restaurants. Many are small specialty chains and concept stores that chose Westport as their sole regional location. Join us for a most interesting and informational discussion.
Y'S MEN 10/13/21 WITH FRANK SPARKS
Y'S MEN MEETING OF SEPTEMBER 30 WITH ED HAJIM
Ed is an American financier, philanthropist and author of On the Road Less Traveled, Ed Hajim. His compelling story of his rise from a dire childhood to professional success and personal fulfillment is truly inspirational and a must listen, proving that passion, positive thinking and humanity conquers all.
Y’S MEN MEETING OF SEPTEMBER 23, 2021 WITH OUR FIRE CHIEFS WESTPORT’S ROB YOST AND WESTON’S JOHN POKORNY
This is an extremely informative session with our fire chiefs Westport’s Rob Yost and Weston’s John Pokorny, discussing how we can best take care of ourselves in the event of fire on our home.
Y'S MEN MEETING OF 9-9-21 WITH SENATOR RICHARD BLUMENTHAL
Y'S MEN MEETING OF 5/20/21 WITH FIRST SELECTMAN CHRIS SPAULDING OF WESTON AND FIRST SELECTMAN JIM MARPE OF WESTPORT
Our Meeting of May 13, 2021 features Dr. C. Griffith Mann - Curator of the Metropolitan Museaum of Art — Dr. Mann spoke to us about J.P. Morgan’s contributions to the Metropolitan Museum Art, which was founded in 1870 to bring art and art education to the American people. Morgan was one of the museum’s greatest benefactors, from the time he became a patron in 1872 until his death in 1913. He was a generous financial donor and a significant contributor of art works. Dr. Mann is the Michel David-Weill Curator in Charge, overseeing the medieval collection and departmental staff at both The Met Fifth Avenue and The Met Cloisters. His presentation contained spectacularly detailed images of the truly historic artworks that Morgan, a native of Hartford, donated to the Met as well as to the Wadsworth Antheneum in his hometown here in Connecticut.
Our Meeting of March 18, 2021 features Harold Bailey Jr., Chair of TEAM Westport — Together Effectively Achieving Multiculturalism. He spoke about Black experiences from their arrival in 1619 to today. Bailey is a retired IBMer, a trustee emeritus of his alma mater, Brown University — from which he received an honorary Ph.D., and a founding member of the Stamford chapter of 100 Black Men. In 2005 he received the Anti-Defamation League's Distinguished Community Leadership award. TEAM Westport is an official town committee established to “achieve, celebrate and extend a more welcoming, multicultural community” with a focus on race, ethnicity, sexual orientation and religion.
Our Meeting of March 11, 2021 features Joe Saldutti, Managing Director at Gridiron Capital in New Canaan, spoke to the Y’s Men on March 11 about how his firm selects investment opportunities — and why it rejects others. Gridiron focuses on middle market private investments, many of which are founder or family owned businesses. His focus is finding great companies to invest in and building value in Gridiron partner companies. This is the audio only version from our speaker.
Our Meeting of February 18, 2021 features Seana Turner, master organizer who founded her business, The Seana Method, in 2010 to help people who complained their spaces were a mess, their schedules were out of control, and they felt overwhelmed by their “stuff.” Turner is a well organized person who recognized that what she did in the normal course of her day was a skill not many others possessed. She will share its essential aspects with us, and you will come away ready to organize.
Our Meeting of February 11, 2021 features Charlie Taney, President of the Friends of the Norwalk River Valley Trail Board. The NRVT is a partially constructed trail, ten feet wide and 30 miles long beginning at Calf Pasture Beach in Norwalk, running through Wilton, Ridgefield and Redding and ending at Rogers Park in Danbury. Taney will talk about the trail as it is today and about the work being done during the next two years to complete it.