Mary Franco

Media Contact:
Donna L. Pfrommer,
EVP, Brand Management &
Volunteer Engagement,
2013 LIVE UNITED Celebration Honors Community
and Business Partners
Mary Franco Receives the Norman Leeds Award for Excellence in Furthering
United Way’s INCOME Work
June 5, 2013 – United Way of Coastal Fairfield County’s 2013 LIVE UNITED
Celebration took place at Fairfield University June 4th. At the breakfast event,
seventeen awards were presented to area community leaders and business partners.
United Way honored Mary Franco for Excellence in Furthering United Way’s INCOME
In 2010, when Norwalk Mayor Moccia and United Way of Coastal Fairfield County
recruited community leaders to develop a Greater Norwalk Ten Year Plan to Prevent
and End Homelessness, they quickly agreed on a key person to tap: Mary Franco from
Norwalk Hospital. Two years later when they next put together an implementation team
for the Ten Year Plan they again agreed on a key leader with a track record for getting
things done: Mary Franco. In both instances, she was the right choice – and then some.
As Co-Chair of Greater Norwalk Opening Doors’ Support Services Workgroup, Mary
has given exceptional leadership to the Workgroup which has (1) gathered data across
agencies about the most frequent users of homeless related services in the community,
(2) researched and site visited best practices to serve them, (3) established a
community philosophy of care to drive actions, (4) developed an innovative Coordinated
Care Team of decision-makers across agencies, and (5) sought funding to staff the
Since 2006, Mary, as President of the Norwalk Hospital Foundation and as Vice
President of Public Affairs at Norwalk Hospital, has led the hospital’s fund raising efforts
as well as government relations and community affairs. Always ready to “give back” to
the community, Mary was a member of Governor Rell’s Early Childhood Research and
Policy Council and a board member of the United Ways serving Norwalk-Wilton and
Stamford. Currently she is a member of the Board of the Norwalk Chamber of
Commerce, of First County Bank in Connecticut, and a trustee of her alma mater,
Merrimack College in North Andover, MA. She is a resident of New Canaan where she
lives with her husband, two sons, and two dogs.
Barbara Butler presented the award to Mary. Barbara is Director of Human Services for
the Town of Westport since 1989 and a former Selectman of the town; Current
Secretary of the Board of Trustees of Norwalk Hospital; Co-Chair of the Steering
Committee of Greater Norwalk Opening Doors regional alliance to prevent and end
homelessness; Long time Board member of the former United Way of Westport-Weston
and currently of United Way of Coastal Fairfield County. Like Mary Franco, Barbara is a
person who is focused first and foremost on getting the work done – especially when it
comes to services and systems for children and families in need.
United Way of Coastal Fairfield County’s mission is: “Together, we mobilize our
communities to improve people’s lives.” Our vision is that all children in need in Coastal
Fairfield County are successful in school and prepared for success in life. United Way of
Coastal Fairfield County serves the towns of Fairfield, Bridgeport, Stratford, Westport,
Trumbull, Easton, Monroe, Weston, Norwalk, Wilton, New Canaan and Darien. Find out
more at our website,