Cultural Alliance of Western CT to Present Networking Series: CULTURENet

Report by Paula Antolini
January 29, 2018 7:03PM EDT



Cultural Alliance of Western CT to Present Networking Series: CULTURENet

Opening with a Conversation Among Authors, Illustrators, & Book Enthusiasts

On February 22nd

“Culture can become a ‘secret weapon’ that makes extraordinary things happen.” –author Jon Katzenbach, Booz & Co.

The Cultural Alliance of Western Connecticut is pleased to announce its new networking series, CULTURENet,

topic-focused events to gather together like-minded people who revolve in the expansive arenas of art, history, and culture. “Art, history, and culture are invariably linked, constantly pushing and pulling the advancement of one another,” says Lisa Scails, Executive Director of the Cultural Alliance of Western Connecticut. “Our desire is to link together the fabrics of our community to inspire and inform.”

The first event in the series, “The Connecticut Book Awards: Calling Connecticut Authors & Illustrators,” will welcome guest Lisa Comstock, Director of the Connecticut Center for the Book, to share an overview of the prestigious annual awards. The event, which will provide plenty of opportunity to network with those who share a common thread, will take place on Thursday, February 22nd, 5:30 PM to 7:00 PM, at @287 Gallery, 287 Main Street, Danbury, CT. Robert H. Patton and Karen Fortunati, both 2017 CT Book Award winners, will also be on hand to network, mingle, and provide insight. BYO snacks and beverage is encouraged. CULTURENet events are free and open to the public, but space is limited. RSVP at http://bit.ly/CTbookawards

The Connecticut Center for the Book at Connecticut Humanities (CTH), a nonprofit affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities  is now accepting submissions for the 2018 Connecticut Book Awards. These awards will recognize the best books published in 2017 by authors and illustrators who reside in Connecticut. Categories include Fiction, Non-Fiction, Poetry, and Young Readers. Award winners, to be announced in September 2018, will receive exposure in Connecticut media outlets and through personal appearances in Connecticut locations. Through competitive grant making, its website, and social media channels, Connecticut Humanities highlights cultural and educational events and is an advocate for the humanities. For more information, visit https://ctcenterforthebook.org/connecticut-book-awards/

Lisa Comstock joined Connecticut Humanities (CTH) in 1990 and has had the opportunity to wear many different hats within the organization overthe years. In 2015, she became the Director of the Connecticut Center for the Book. Lisa holds a Bachelor’s degree in history and in English from the University of Tampa and a Master of Arts in Liberal Studies from Wesleyan University.


Robert H. Patton’s winning entry was for Cajun Waltz, published by Thomas Dunne Books, St. Martin’s Press. A resident of Darien, his book captures the cadence of the Louisiana bayou during the Depression and beyond. Robert holds degrees in literature and journalism from Brown University and Northwestern University. He has worked as a Capitol Hill reporter, a commercial fisherman, and a real estate developer before publishing his family memoir, The Pattons, to wide acclaim in 1994.

Karen Fortunati was awarded forThe Weight of Zero, published by Delacorte Press, a story of loss, grief, and hope that affects a young woman in her struggle with mental illness and the stigma of treatment.  Fortunati is a former attorney whose experiences on the job with children and teens and personal experiences witnessing the impact of depression, bipolar disorder, and suicide inspired her to write the story of hope for those who struggle with mental illness.

Programs of the Cultural Alliance of Western Connecticut are made possible, in part, with the support of the Department of Economic and Community Development, Office of the Arts, which also receives support from the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency. For more information about the Cultural Alliance’s programs and events, to volunteer or to donate, call (203) 798 0760 or visit www.artswesternct.org


Danbury. “The Connecticut Book Awards: Calling Authors & Illustrators,” spotlighting the prestigious annual awards, the first of a new networking series entitled CULTURENet. Hosted by the Cultural Alliance of Western Connecticut. February 22nd, 5:30 pm to 7:00 pm. FREE. @287 Gallery, 287 Main Street. (203) 798 0760www.artswesternct.org 
The Cultural Alliance of Western Connecticut, with offices at 287 Main Street, Danbury, CT, is a leader in supporting a vibrant arts and culture community in Northern Fairfield and Southern Litchfield Counties. The Cultural Alliance promotes and advocates for arts, history, and culture as a primary driver of the economy and as an enriching influence for communities and people. The Cultural Alliance of Western Connecticut, a 501c-3, is the largest and only regional service organization working to ensure better access to arts and culture for all residents and visitors in Greater Danbury. Major funding is provided by the Connecticut Office of the Arts, with additional support by public and private funding, corporate sponsors, and by the Cultural Alliance’s 290 members including more than 55 arts, history, and cultural organizations.  (203) 798 0760www.artswesternct.org

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