The Southington Community YMCA is pleased to recognize the following individuals and organizations for their outstanding work supporting and improving the quality of life in our community. “We have a great group of award winners this year and their impact on Southington has been amazing. We are so fortunate to live and work in a community where individuals, businesses, and organizations are willing to give back and put others first. That certainly is the common theme with each of the awardees this year” stated Mark Pooler, CEO of the Southington-Cheshire Community YMCAs. 
YMCA PERSON OF THE YEAR AWARD
Presented to a member of the Southington community who through his/her actions makes Southington a better place to live. We are thrilled to present this award to Tim Connellan, Superintendent of Schools.
Tim has been the Southington Superintendent of Schools since August 11, 2014. He is a longtime resident of the town since 1980 with his wife, Terri where they raised 2 sons and a daughter. He began his Southington Public Schools career in 1980 as a school psychologist at the former Central Elementary (now Derynoski) until 1984. Between 1980 and 2014 Tim worked in various educational positions in several Connecticut towns. Since taking over as Superintendent in 2014, Tim has been one of the greatest community partners and collaborators for the Y and many other organizations in town. At the heart of every decision, he has “what is best for our kids” in mind and has done an outstanding job leading Southington Public Schools for the last seven years. Tim is a true advocate for kids and wants to see each student reach their fullest potential. He has always had a philosophy that these are “our kids” – kids that belong to the entire community and that all agencies should be working together for what is best for “our kids”. He has been active in the community for many years, from being a volunteer coach at Western Baseball to jumping into Sloper Pond in the winter months for the Sloper Plunge and many other efforts through the years. YMCA CEO, Mark Pooler states: “Tim has been on our list for Y Person of the Year for a while now. With his upcoming retirement in June, we thought this would be a great exclamation point to a wonderful career and a nice way to say thank you for all he has done for the children and teens of Southington”. Tim and the entire Southington Public School staff have done an amazing job keeping our kids in school during the pandemic and providing them with the best possible education given the circumstances. Many schools are just getting back to in-person learning, while Southington has been in school since last September. This is a direct correlation to the outstanding leadership of Tim and his entire team! Congratulations to Superintendent Tim Connellan – YMCA Person of the Year!
YOUTH DEVELOPMENT AWARD
Presented to an individual or group who has worked to nurture the potential of youth and/or teens. This year’s award is going to the Rotary Club of Southington for their outstanding fundraising efforts on the Memorial Park Playscape over the last two years.
The efforts by the Rotary Club related to the playscape project at Memorial Park are the most recent example of the club’s commitment to strengthening our community. More than ever, kids need to be outside, active, and have downtime from screens and electronics. Their work on this project has provided the youth of Southington with a safe, adventurous, and fun location to PLAY and allow kids to be kids! We are also thankful for the Town of Southington and the Community Foundation of Greater New Britain for their contribution to the project as well. However, Rotary's leadership on this project has been outstanding and helped fill the financial gap needed to make this project a reality. Simply put, the Rotary Club “stepped up” when needed and got the job done, and these efforts deserve recognition and praise! The Rotary Club has a long-standing tradition of giving back & making Southington a better place to live, and this is just another example of those efforts. 
HEALTHY LIVING AWARD
Presented to an individual or group who has improved the health and well-being of the residents and/or employees of Southington. Bloom Yoga Fitness Studio is the proud winner of the Healthy Living Award. Bloom Yoga has done an outstanding job over the years in improving the health of Southington through its many Yoga and Wellness programs.
Established in 2010 by a Mother/Daughter team, Julie, Bethany, and Morgan Wallace, their mission has been to create a welcoming space for healing within the local community. They have also opened and run a successful Bloom Yoga school with a Teacher Training Program that has provided our community and many others with certified Yoga instructors. Bloom also provides a great deal of life coaching opportunities for those looking to take control of their thoughts, emotions, and destiny and increase their overall mental wellbeing. In addition to increasing health and wellness in town, they have been and continue to support Southington through a variety of food drives, toiletry drives, and other fundraisers for those in need. 
SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY AWARD
Presented to an individual or group that has motivated people to support their neighbors and the larger community. The Main Street Community Foundation will receive the award this year for their support and generosity through one of the most challenging years in recent times.
The Main Street Community Foundation was founded in 1995 and takes great pride in helping to make each town a better community in which to live and work. That is exactly what they have done for Southington for many years. The Main Street Community Foundation, through the Bradley H. Barnes and Leila U. Barnes Memorial Trust, has provided a lifeline to so many non-profits in town through their recent COVID-19 relief grants. They have given over $627k in COVID-19 relief grants to Southington alone! In addition to their recent pandemic relief efforts, the Main Street Community Foundation has a long history of providing our community with innovative grant funding opportunities for many non-profits that have helped to improve the quality of life in our town. 
YOUTH LEADERSHIP AWARD
Presented to local high school-age students who display leadership qualities and are making positive contributions in our community. Mary Miller, Senior at Southington High School, will have the honor of being our Youth Leadership Award winner. Mary has been a long-time camper at YMCA Camp Sloper and has always demonstrated our Y values on a daily basis and for that was named Camper of the Year in 2013 along with her sister Margaret Miller. She will also be a Camp Counselor at the camp over the summer. Mary Miller has been an important part of the STEPS Coalition for the past 8 years, starting as a Champion in the Asset Building Classrooms Initiative to now being an Executive Committee member on the STEPS Youth Council. In addition to that, Mary has excelled academically at school and is involved in several other clubs and school organizations.