WEDNESDAY, MAY 24TH, 2017
7:00–7:30 A.M. Networking Coffee
7:30–9:00 A.M. Event Program & Presentation of the 4th Annual “Land of Opportunity” Award
STAMFORD MARRIOTT HOTEL & SPA
243 Tresser Boulevard, Stamford, CT
About Our Keynote Speaker
Born in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, Dan-el Padilla Peralta grew up undocumented and briefly homeless in New York City. He studied Classics at Princeton University (AB summa cum laude), the University of Oxford (MPhil), and Stanford University (PhD). After a two-year postdoctoral stint at Columbia University’s Society of Fellows, Dan-el returned to Princeton as an assistant professor in the Classics Department, where he works on the cultural and religious history of the Roman Republic and Empire and maintains an affiliation with the university’s Program in Latino Studies. His 2015 memoir Undocumented: A Dominican Boy’s Odyssey from a Homeless Shelter to the Ivy League (Penguin) received an Alex Award from the American Library Association; more recently he has written for the Guardian, Matter, Vox, and the NYT. A proponent of humanistic learning to promote social justice, he taught in Columbia’s Justice-in-Education Initiative and Freedom and Citizenship Seminar.
About Our “Land Of Opportunity Award” Recipient
Yelena Klompus arrived in the United States in 1993 from Russia, where she had studied at the Moscow State Institute of Culture for Library Science. Her passion for learning, advocacy on behalf of immigrants, and love of multiculturalism led her to volunteer at the Ferguson Library, where she later became the World Languages and Literacy Librarian in 2003. There she leads the successful Let’s Talk program, which annually helps 1200+ learners improve their English language skills. Her commitment to serving Stamford’s immigrant population is evident in her passion for one-on-one advocacy work, consistently bringing new immigrants to the library to inspire and motivate them to pursue their dreams. Yelena also supervises the implementation of a series of ESL and citizenship courses at the library. Her leadership in expanding the Ferguson’s resources for advancing and integrating Stamford’s immigrants has led to the library’s outstanding operation.
Building One Community is a 5 1/2 year-old resource center bringing passionate people together to help immigrants and their families succeed in the community. We EDUCATE, EMPLOY, EMPOWER and ENGAGE immigrants and the community at large. Programs include English language instruction, wrap-around family services ranging from homework help to immigration legal services, job-training programs, and a job-hiring site. We engage our broader community in experiences and dialogue through volunteer opportunities and public presentations. Thousands of immigrants in the greater Stamford area have connected with these opportunities to become more self-sufficient, strengthen their families, and attain a more stable life. They are among the 37% of Stamford residents who are first generation immigrants working hard to achieve their American Dream.