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SVP International

With more than 3200 members from Boston to Bangalore in 40 cities, SVP is the world’s largest network of engaged donors. 

We call our member donors “Partners” because they’re so much more than individuals who write checks. SVP Partners are engaged in their giving, and get involved beyond the checkbook.

SVP Connecticut started with 9 founding Partners and we’ve been growing ever since.  Our Partners, current and retired professionals, are drawn from varied industries and sectors including banking and finance, energy, nonprofit, tech, and management consulting.

We are truly fortunate to have so many generous individuals living in our area who are committed to being a catalyst for closing the opportunity gap in our state.  Some of our Partners are extensively experienced in philanthropy while others are just starting out and eager to learn from others in the group.

If you want to make a difference – and a bigger difference then you could alone – you’ll want to meet these folks.

Every story is different, but each is fueled by a series of connections. That’s the beauty of the SVP network. You never know who will take your impact to the next level.

Meet Our Board…

Karen Brown

Karen is the Vice President of Innovation and Strategic Learning for Fairfield County's Community Foundation which administers the SVP-CT funding as one of their Field of Interest Funds. Her insight into the nonprofit community, as well as her strong support of developing social enterprise in the region, is a huge asset to SVP-CT. Read More »

Don M. Kendall, Jr.

Don Kendall has been the catalyst and driving force in the creation of SVP-CT. He has been instrumental in partner recruitment and the establishment of a close working relationship with Fairfield County's Community Foundation, and was the co-lead Partner of SVP Connecticut's first Investee. Currently he serves as the Chairman of SVP-CT's Executive Board. Read More »

Jeffrey Mayer

With over thirty years of experience in the commodities industry, Jeff likes to say that his conversion to the clean energy business began after watching a documentary about global warming. “I feared that someday my children or grandchildren might turn to me and ask, ‘What were you thinking?!’ " He is now the CEO/President of a firm that provides cost-effective energy solutions to homeowners and businesses. Read More »

Sylvia Shepard

A fifth generation family business owner, Sylvia founded the Smith Family Council, a governance body for over 150 family shareholders which has owned the Menasha Corporation (a Wisconsin-based manufacturing company) for 160 years.. Read More »

Robert J. Smith

Robert joined SVP Connecticut as a founding Partner after he concluded a 21-year tenure with Glencore, Ltd., a leading integrated producer and marketer of commodities. A man of many SVP hats, Robert is a member of SVP-CT's Executive Board and chairs our Investment Committee. Read More »

Richard J. Wenning

A national expert on education policy design and implementation, Rich is executive director of BeFoundation, a family foundation devoted to dramatic improvement in the education of underserved children in Connecticut and the vitality of their communities. He also leads SpreadMusicNow.org, a national fund focused on developing learning pathways for young musicians. Read More »

Meet Some of Our Partners…

Alycia Angus

An entrepreneur, Alycia is the co-founder and CEO of Kids U, a chain of recreational facilities for children in Connecticut and New York. Read More »

Mark Argosh

A Partner since 2014, along with his wife, Paula, Mark also holds the role of Executive Director for the organization. With more than thirty years of experience as a senior advisor, investor, and partner to Fortune 500, mid-size companies and leading nonprofit organizations, and foundations, Mark brings an invaluable skill-set to the role. Read More »

John Bergen

John is a senior technologist who enjoys solving business challenges through the effective use of technology. With over 30 years of experience, John has seen massive change in both technology and its use. Read More »

David Berkowitz

David is a private investor with over 20 years of grantmaking experience and currently serves on the board of the Helen and William Mazer Foundation. A consultant to small businesses, he is a reviewer for the New Market Tax Credit Program and was the founding director the Center for the Development of Social Finance. Read More »

Larry L. Bingaman

Larry is an executive with 25 years experience in the water industry and is currently the President and Chief Executive Officer of the South Central Connecticut Regional Water Authority. He is also a founding board member for the Connecticut chapter of Conscious Capitalism. Read More »

Annie and Jon Burleigh

Annie and Jon Burleigh have been active in Connecticut-based charities for many years. Read More »

Bill Burnham

A consummate entrepreneur, Bill has extensive marketing and finance experience which he has been using to become deeply engaged with the nonprofit sector in our community. Read More »

Philip Butterfield

Philip Butterfield served as Chairman of HSBC Bank Of Bermuda from May 2012 to December 2015 and upon his return to the States, joined SVP in 2017. Read More »

Gene Celentano

Gene is a highly experienced oil and energy professional who had a 38-year tenure with Texaco International overseeing operations in more than 40 countries throughout the United States, Central America, the Caribbean, South America, West Africa and Canada. Read More »

Ron Clarke

During his 30+ year-career in the insurance industry, Ron has continually demonstrated entrepreneurial success within a corporate environment. Read More »

Vicki Craver

Vicki joined SVP-CT in 2014 after learning about the organization through her work with the Board of Directors for Fairfield County's Community Foundation. A member of the FCCF board since 2009, Vicki became Chairman in 2013. Read More »

Laura Davis

Laura is a Managing Director at JPMorgan with over twenty years of experience advising individuals, families and foundations. She leads a team guiding clients on all aspects of wealth management including strategies for impactful philanthropy. Read More »

Peter Denious

Peter is an experienced private equity and venture capital advisor and investor most recently with Aberdeen Standard Investments. Read More »

Nancy Diamond

A not-for-profit arts producer, Nancy Diamond has presented theatre, film and dance in the tri-state area for more than 30 years. Read More »

Amy Chan Downer and Tony Downer

This dynamic duo were two of SVP-CT's founding Partners which isn’t surprising considering their active support and leading roles in many community organizations. Read More »

Dick Ferguson

Dick has been working as a volunteer, Board member and supporter of private, public and charter schools in Connecticut for over three decades. His involvement in the education sector is extensive and he brings a deep understanding of the issues related to the achievement gap to SVP Connecticut. Read More »

Rob Fried

Rob Fried is a musician, philanthropist, businessman, visionary, and co-architect/founder of Band Together CT, a musical enterprise that has helped raise over $3 million for local charities. Read More »

Shaun Gagnon

Shaun is a Partner and Managing Director at Cambridge Insurance Advisors focusing on employee benefits, executive benefits, high net worth planning and due diligence for mergers and acquisitions. Read More »

Patrick Gentile

Through is work with several organizations, Pat has been instrumental in providing best in class co-educational STEM programs to more than 10,000 inner city youth in Bridgeport, South Norwalk and Stamford. Drawing upon his experience as a retired CFO and CPA, Pat also volunteers during tax season for the IRS Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Program to provide free tax preparation to over 3,000 residents in our community. Read More »

Wendy Giffords

Wendy has spent the majority of her career working in consumer packaged goods and direct response marketing and is applying her consulting experience, including notable projects with Beats by Dr. Dre and Idealab, to SVP's Investees. Read More »

Gary Goldberg

Gary has an extensive background in public and private debt and equity investing as well as experience in manufacturing management and online travel technology. Read More »

Stacey Goodwin

As a daughter and granddaughter of teachers, Stacey believes in the transformational impact of education and related programs for children. Read More »

Virginia Gray

Virginia's passion is helping primary and secondary children to prepare for life and achieving their potential. Read More »

Andy Greenawalt

Andy is a highly successful tech entrepreneur and advocate of progress. A catalyst for change, Andy is an active supporter of entrepreneurship in Connecticut. Read More »

Mark Gudis

Over the last 30 years, Mark has been a partner, senior investment professional and senior executive at several of the world’s leading investment firms including SAC Capital Advisors, The Blackstone Group and General Electric Capital and currently is the Managing Partner for Backcast Partners Management, LLC. Read More »

JP Hernandez

JP learned about SVP by harnessing the power of the internet when a Google search about philanthropy and social entrepreneurship in Connecticut led him to our website. Read More »

Margharet Hollander

After working on Wall Street and in the high fashion industry, Margharet became a third-generation health care provider after she returned to school to become an optician. Read More »

Paul Holzer

Paul Diego Holzer serves as Executive Director of Achieve Hartford!, an action-oriented, cross-sector collaborator focused on engaging the private sector to expand opportunity, improve effectiveness, and increase student success in Connecticut's capital city. Read More »

Alex Horton

Alex Horton is a founding member and a current partner of BRBG Insurance Agency in Shelton, CT. With over 20 years of insurance experience Alex has helped guide companies and individuals with their insurance needs. Read More »

Jeffrey Infusino

Recently retired from management consulting, Jeff has been deeply engaged with SVP from the start. He serves on the Investment Committee and the Partner strategy committees focused on workforce development and education, two key sectors of focus in SVP Connecticut's mission to close the opportunity gap. Read More »

Randi Infusino

Randi’s professional career has focused on educating and mentoring children and has largely focused on those with learning disabilities. Read More »

Daniel Isaia

Not only is Daniel Isaia an entrepreneur with extensive sales, service, and marketing skills honed through professional enterprises that have spanned the globe, he is a champion race car driver. Read More »

Evelyn Isaia

In anticipation of concluding her successful almost 30 year career in wealth management in May 2017, Evelyn has been sharpening her focus on the nonprofit sector and looks forward to using her energy and skilled proficiency at project management and development to engage with SVP's Investees. Read More »

Karen Jenkins

Karen has over three decades of executive international NGO/nonprofit management experience and academic leadership. Currently she is a consultant supporting domestic and international organizations with unique missions that serve marginalized communities to help their boards expand institutional capacity and strategically create long-term, robust and sustainable resource development efforts. Read More »

Tripp Killin

Tripp is Executive Director of the Jeniam Foundation, a small family foundation based in Connecticut. With experience in both for-profit and nonprofit organizations, Tripp is well-versed in major donor development, operational management, evaluating proposals/grants and technology projects. Read More »

Tom Kreitler

Tom Kreitler is a Partner at Eaton Partners, a leading global fund placement agency, where he leads the hedge fund/public market strategies fundraising team. Read More »

Dawn Kreitler

Dawn's philanthropic passion is educating others in nutrition and empowering underserved children. Read More »

Christopher Kunhardt

After concluding his 26-year tenure with JP Morgan Securities, a search for a way to leverage his financial management experience with his desire to have significant interaction and impact on the nonprofit sector led Chris to SVP. Read More »

Adam Kurzer

A seasoned veteran of the financial industry, Adam brings more than 30 years of high yield/leveraged finance experience to his work with SVP. Read More »

Eileen Lavigne Flug

Eileen is an attorney practicing in Westport and serves as the appointed assistant town attorney for the Town of Westport. Deeply engaged in civic matters, Eileen served as an elected representative in the Westport town government for almost 12 years. Read More »

Dan Levinson

Since earning his undergrad degree from Brown and MBA from Stanford, Dan has been in the private equity business, founding Main Street Resources in 1998. This experience has given Dan a firm grounding in launching and executing complex human-scale transactions and opportunities. Read More »

Cathy Manion

Cathy joined SVP in September 2015 after enjoying a 34 year career with IBM where she served several key general management and sales executive roles, several with global responsibility. Read More »

Marianna Kulak McCall

Marianna believes every child deserves the right to reach their full potential and is dedicated to providing high-quality, developmental early education for underserved children. Read More »

Mark McCall

Mark McCall is a Managing Director of Lime Rock Partners, a private equity investment firm focused on the upstream oil and gas sectors. Recently he returned from a leave of absence from the firm to accept a Presidential appointment, serving as the Executive Director of the Loan Programs Office at the U.S. Department of Energy in the Obama administration. Read More »

Scot Melland

Scot is an Internet and digital media CEO and board member with over 20 years of experience in consumer and B2B services, online advertising, M&A and strategy. Now looking to expand his philanthropic impact, Scot's experience with a nonprofit work development organization is being leveraged by SVP-CT's developing focus on youth unemployment. Read More »

Arthur Mintzer

With nearly 30 years of experience in corporate technology roles, Arthur has a passion for helping organizations by ensuring their technology and business operations are optimized to help them achieve their mission and vision. Read More »

Amy Orenstein

Amy has a professional background in management consulting and is the co-founder of a start-up firm, Opine, which provides consulting services for small businesses. Read More »

Penny Pearlman

Penny Pearlman is an accomplished motivational speaker, business consultant and seminar leader who helps individuals and organizations develop strategies for success. Read More »

Bill Phillips

Bill brings more than 15-years experience in state-level advocacy and politics to SVP Connecticut as well as a deep understanding of the education sector. Read More »

Joe Pucci

Joe is a Financial Advisor and Principal in Bernstein Global Wealth Management’s New York office. He advises high net-worth individuals, families and institutions, as well as their respective trusts, estates, foundations, endowments and pension plans. Read More »

Jill and Tom Robey

Jill and Tom's professional experiences span the financial, education, technology, media, and telecom industries. Both have been very active in their community and share a mutual interest in education issues and organizations. Read More »

Nestor Sawicki

Nestor Sawicki is an accomplished global finance professional in the financial and business services industries with expertise in Latin America, European, Asian and North American markets. Read More »

Diana Sawicki

Diana is an interior designer and founder of Diana Sawicki Interior Design, a full-service residential and commercial interior design firm based in Westport, Connecticut. Read More »

Everett Schenk

After beginning his banking career at Chemical Bank, Everett concluded a long and successful 23-year tenure with BNP Paribas when he retired in 2012 as the CEO of Corporate and Investment Banking for North America Region of BNP Paribas SA. Everett’s active areas of philanthropic interest include land preservation, youth education, and job training activities, Read More »

Barry Schwimmer

Drawing upon his successful career in private equity, Barry's most recent work has centered upon supporting start-up and small businesses with a goal of increasing job growth an economic development in Connecticut. Read More »

Tanya Rhodes Smith

Tanya's experience in policy development, nonprofit administration, team management, community organizing and legislative advocacy is a great fit for engaging with SVP Connecticut. Read More »

Christina Smith

A Bridgeport, Connecticut native who has lived in London, New York, and San Francisco among other places, Christina returned to Bridgeport with a passion not only for community development, but the desire to be part of making Bridgeport a place that people love to be! Christina says she pursued graduate studies "with the specific aim of returning to Bridgeport to make my hometown better and restore it to its former glory!" Read More »

Ted Yang

Ted is an active digital start-up angel investor and advisor with more than 15 years of experience in the capital markets industry. Currently he is the CTO and Founder of MediaCrossing, Inc. an independent digital media trading partner serving publishers, marketers and agencies. Read More »

We are tremendously grateful for our community of Partners.

Your time and talent, your generosity, your drive for something better… these are the roots of transformation – for individuals, for organizations, for our community. Thank you.

 

Craig Adler
Seth & Marjorie Almansi
Alycia & Bruce Angus
Mark & Paula Argosh
John & Dot Bergen
David Berkowitz
Larry Bingaman
Andy Boas
Karen Brown
Jon & Anne Burleigh
Bill & Alice Burnham
Philip Butterfield
Virginia Cargill
Gene Celentano
Andy Greenawalt & Jennifer Christo
Ron Clarke
Kevin & Diane Connolly
Vicki Craver
Laura & Dean Davis
Peter Denious
Nick Donofrio
Tony & Amy Downer
Dick Ferguson
Patrick & Anne Marie Fox
Linda Franciscovich
Rob & Diane Fried
Shaun & Natalie Gagnon
Patrick & Teresa Gentile
Ron & Jennifer Gerber
Wendy Giffords
Gary Goldberg
Steve & Jennifer Goldstein
Stacey Goodwin
Virginia Gray
Andy Greenawalt & Jennifer Christo
Jill Greenberg & Mitchell Lester
Mark & MaryGrace Gudis
JP Hernandez
Margharet Hollander
Jonathan & Julie Hollenberg
Paul Holzer
Alex Horton
Jeffrey & Randi Infusino
Evelyn & Daniel Isaia
Karen Jenkins
Kendall & Don Kendall
Tripp Killin
Tom & Dawn Kreitler
Chris Kunhardt
Adam Kurzer
Eileen Lavigne Flug
Rob Leighton & Maureen Weaver
Dan Levinson
Cathy Manion
Jeffrey Mayer & Nancy Diamond
Mark & Marianna McCall
Scot Melland
Arthur & Martha Mintzer
Maria Mojica
Amy Orenstein
Penny Pearlman
Bill Phillips
Jamilah Prince-Stewart
Joe Pucci & Dara Lieberson
Matt Rebold
Jill & Tom Robey
Tim Roof
Jonathan Sackler
Nestor & Diana Sawicki
Everett Schenk
Craig Schiavone & Kurt Handschumacher
Barry Schwimmer
Eric & Leslie Seidman
Sylvia Shepard
Bob Schultz
Christina Smith
Robert & Tanya Smith
Kerri Vilaverde
Richard Wenning
Ted & Christine Yang
Lawrence Zlatkin

In Memoriam

We honor those that have passed as SVP Connecticut Partners.

Maureen Zlatkin

 

Friends of SVP

We are grateful for the financial support of these friends of SVP Connecticut:

Alliance Bernstein Capital
BeFoundation
Chevron Matching Employee Fund
GE Capital Foundation
Grossman Family Foundation
Mark Henson
Jeniam Foundation
Kendall Family Foundation
The David and Patricia Porter Fund