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Yvonne deAngeli-Fontanez was honored Wednesday night with the 19th annual “Strong, Smart, and Bold” award presented by Girls Inc. of Meriden.

“Our mission at Girls Incorporated is to inspire girls to be strong, smart, and bold, so every year we honor a female in the community that exemplifies that,” said Michelle Bourdeau, the executive director of Girls Inc. of Meriden. These qualities may be lived through their community service efforts, career, and other aspects of their life.

DeAngeli-Fontanez, the general manager of Four Points by Sheraton in Meriden, was chosen because “she really is a role model to our girls,” Bourdeau said.

“We like (the girls) to see a female that has a leadership position. She does it with such dignity and grace — never wants to be recognized for all that she does,” Bourdeau said.

DeAngeli-Fontanez is the treasurer of the Meriden Rotary Club, has been a past chairman of the board for the chamber of commerce, chairs the Nites in the City fundraiser, and was active in the Maloney High School music department, among other things. She said most of her current volunteer work is with the Rotary Club’s many projects.

“I'm honored to be recognized, and it's exciting to be joining such a great group of previous winners and honorees,” deAngeli-Fontanez said. “There's a great respect that comes with Girls Inc., so to be recognized by this particular organization is really sweet.”

Past honorees include Marlene McGann, retired director of the South Central Connecticut Substance Abuse Council and former board member of Girls Inc., and Maria Campos-Harlow, executive director of the Spanish Community of Wallingford.

Hailey Pasinski. a local middle school student, was also honored Wednesday, as “Girl of the Year” at Girls Inc. The award is given to a middle school student based on her dedication to giving back to the community by volunteering, being active in leadership programming, and future aspirations.


Written by Bailey Wright, Record-Journal staff

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