Committees Formed To Review Rescue Act Funding Applications

News release from Mayor’s Office:

Mayor Ganim announces that twelve committees composed of seventy-seven community members have begun reviewing applications submitted for funding available through the American Rescue Plan Act in the City of Bridgeport.

In August, after several weeks of public input, the City of Bridgeport released thirteen Request for Proposals (RFPs) for funding through the American Rescue Plan Act for Bridgeport-based small businesses and non-profits. Almost seven hundred applications were submitted and are currently being reviewed by non-conflicted selection committees composed of city staff, City Council representatives, and community members. The committees have already made some decisions on grant dollars to be received by Bridgeport small businesses and non-profits and the first announcements regarding allocations for several of the RFP categories will occur this month.

Mayor Ganim stated, “I am pleased that the ARP committees have begun the hard work of reviewing over 600 applications received by the City. I have utmost confidence that the members of these various committees will ensure that the ARP money is distributed in a way that lifts up our community in the wake of COVID-19 and sets Bridgeport on a path for future growth, development, and success.”

Council President Aidee Nieves stated, “The City of Bridgeport’s ARP committees are diverse, representing many different neighborhoods, areas of expertise, and affiliations. We wanted to bring everyone to the table to ensure that the decision-making process was equitable and represents the many interests of the residents of Bridgeport.”

Small Business Committee (Business Expansion and Storefront Improvement grants)
— Scott Burns, City Councilman 130th District, Budget Co-Chair
— Elena Cahill, Director, University of Bridgeport Bauer Hall Innovation Center
— Lauren Coakley-Vincent, President & CEO Downtown Special Services District
— Yesenia Figueroa, City of Bridgeport Small Minority Business Enterprise
— Fred Gee, City of Bridgeport Small Minority Business Enterprise
— Marisol Herrera, President, Greater Bridgeport Hispanic Chamber of Commerce
— Ed Lavernoich, President, Bridgeport Economic Development Corporation
— Matthew McCarthy, City Councilman 130th District, Certified Public Accountant
— Thomas McMillan, President, Minority Business Administration, Business-Owner
— Ernest Newton, City Councilman 139th District, Budget Co-Chair
— Michele Otero, City of Bridgeport, Contract Compliance Officer
— Patricia Rowe, City of Bridgeport Chief Administrative Office

Affordable Housing, Rental Assistance & Homelessness
— Edward Adams, Mayor’s Liaison to the Housing Authority
— Jeanette Herron, City Councilwoman 133rd District
— Tyler Mack, Aide, Connecticut Senate Democrats
— Adrienne Numaworse, City of Bridgeport Health Department, Resident Relocation Coordinator
— Reggy Starx, Fridgeport

Community Health Services
— Samuel Diaz, Chief Strategy Officer, Southwest Community Health Center, Inc.
— Jodi Fulton, Registered Nurse, City of Bridgeport Health Department
— Niels Heilmann, Bridgeport Generation Now, MD from Columbia Medical School
— Ebony Jackson-Shaheed, City of Bridgeport Health Director
— Peter Spain, Former City Councilman, MPH from Yale University

Domestic Violence, Mental Health & Addiction Services
— Tiheba Bain, Founder, Women Against Mass Incarceration
— Jorge Cruz, City Councilman 131st District
— Dr. Ralph Ford, Psychologist
— Rev. Godbolt, Enterchange Ministries
— Josue Jorge, City of Bridgeport Communications Department
— Dr. Dwayne Smith, President, Housatonic Community College

Faith Based Initiatives
— Janene Hawkins, City of Bridgeport Chief Administrative Officer
— Michelle Lyons, City Councilwoman 134th District
— Francis Nuñez, Community Organizer
— Rev. Cass Shaw, Former President, Council of Churches of Greater Bridgeport

Nutrition Insecurity
— Ola Akande, City of Bridgeport Health Department
— Faith Fennelly, Director of Philanthropy, Newman’s Own Foundation
— Nichola Hall, Assistant Director, Bridgeport Public Schools Food & Nutrition Services
— John Marshall Lee, Financial Listener
— Maria Valle, City Councilwoman, 137th, Liaison to the Food Policy Council

Public Safety & Crime Prevention
— Gemeem Davis, Co-Director, Bridgeport Generation Now
— Antonio Felipe, State Representative, 130th District
— Lt. Paul Grech, Bridgeport Police Department
— Rosalina Roman-Christy, City Councilwoman, 135th District

Residential Weatherization
— Joseph Gresko, State Representative, City of Bridgeport Sustainability Coordinator
— Scott Burns, City Councilman 130th District, Budget Co-Chair
— Kai Starn, Senior Sustainability Consultant, Steven Winter Associates, Inc.

Second Chance & Re-Entry
— Earl Bloodworth, Director of Mayor’s Initiative for Re-Entry Affairs
— Elaine Braithwaite, City Librarian
— Dr. Monette Ferguson, CEO, Alliance for Community Empowerment
— Dr. Herron Gaston, Assistant Chief Administrative Officer, City of Bridgeport
— Shamare Holmes, Hang Time & Her Time
— Rev. Nancy Kingwood, President, GBAPP
— Virgilio Rosario, Business Owner and Community Leader
— Kirk Wesley, CONECT

Visual and Performing Arts
— Chris Caruso, Former State Representative
— Sarah-Jane Henry, Director, Performing & Visual Arts, Bridgeport Public Schools
— Rowena White, Director of Communications & Marketing, City of Bridgeport
— Bruce Williams, Black Rock Arts Guild, Business Owner
— Kim Bianca Williams, East End Resident and Small Business Owner

Workforce Development
— Marcus Brown, City Councilman, 132nd District
— Vincent Mobilio, City of Bridgeport Office of Planning & Economic Development
— Daniel Roach, City of Bridgeport
— Dan Onofrio, President & CEO, Bridgeport Regional Business Council

Youth & Education
— Razul Branch, Bridgeport Arts Council
— Dr. Monette Ferguson, CEO, Alliance for Community Empowerment
— Roland Harmon, Co-President, Governor’s Prevention Partnership
— Mark Harp, City of Bridgeport Lighthouse Program
— Callie Heilmann, Co-Director, Bridgeport Generation Now
— Linda Kirkland, Alliance for Community Empowerment
— Rev. Mary McBride-Lee, City Councilwoman, 135th District
— Judy Morella, City of Bridgeport Lighthouse Program
— Aidee Nieves, City of Bridgeport City Council President
— Tim O’Connor, Bridgeport Resident
— Veronica Ortiz, Constituent Services, Mayor’s Office
— Hermino “Tito” Planas, Executive Director, Elementary Education & Mathematics, BPS
— Carli Rocha-Reaes, Director of School Counseling, Bridgeport Public Schools
— Marilyn Rodriguez, Executive Assistant to the Mayor
— Joe Sokolovic, Bridgeport Board of Education
— Michael Testani, Superintendent, Bridgeport Public Schools
— Carolyn Vermont, Executive Director, Habitat for Humanity
— John Weldon, Chairman, Bridgeport Board of Education



  1. Nothing but a dog and pony show, these committees could come with some good ideas but Joe can over rule anything they comeup with. “A camel is a horse designed by a committee.”

  2. For decades, leaders of industry in Bridgeport stepped up and offered their expertise and vision.
    The last time there was a serious effort to engage credible people was the Management Advisory Committee during the Bucci and Moran administrations.
    Industry is gone.
    Overall, this is a disappointing collection of mostly political figures and Ganim administration appointees.
    Of course, recommending how to spend this money has nothing to do with having skills or ability to analyze and prioritize.
    This is just another pot of money that will be squandered on questionable projects and organizations.

  3. Hey,at least we finally know what Ed Adams gets his $96,000 salary for now.Let’s see,Joe hired him to be in charge of the “office of transparency,then he was put in charge of parking meters rollout,and now apparently he is a liaIson ,,Joe making up job titles for Adams now..
    Edward Adams, Mayor’s Liaison to the Housing Authority

  4. Last week I drove by Joe’s monument to his stealing from our city, the old Stop&Shop building on upper Madison Ave.It’s been abandoned for years now,decaying. Just looking at it made me so angry. That building had no rhyme or reason to be built there other than Joe’s greed.The cost to tear down that building should have been part of his restitution.

    1. You mean the Joe Ganim/un-indicted co-conspirator property? I thought some also know it as Willinger place? By the way,
      Who is really defending….I mean representing, the suspect in the election fraud case anyway?

  5. As usual, The Rules and Law don’t apply to the City of Bridgeport and the Ganim administration.

    FOI REQUIRES a minimum 24 hour advance posting of agendas for these committees as well as minutes kept and published. Ganim says : “I am pleased that the ARP committees have begun the hard work of reviewing over 600 applications received by the City….”

    Sorry, Joe…that’s illegal. No agendas were publicly posted in adavnce. Just likie your Police task force BS, breaking the law.

    BTW>…..What business does Virgilio Rosario (fresh out of his cell, and brother of Chris) own??????

    Lennie, lots fir you to look into in these committees looking to handle $110 million of our tax dollars in an illegal manner

  6. Lennie, I have a special request for you, could you contact David Waler and askhim if he write a editorial on his assessment concerning the funding available through the American Rescue Plan Act in the City of Bridgeport.


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