Paul & Gloria Konwerski Family Fund
Paul Konwerski's life was all about people and education. He was one of the first laymen in the country to receive a Master's in Religious Education from Fairfield university, and taught Social Studies at Shelton High School for 37 years, serving as chair of the Social Studies department until his retirement in 2000. He was a member of the Connecticut and National Education Associations as well as the Shelton Education Association where he was a member of the Ethics, Publicity, and Teacher of the Year Committees. He touched so many lives throughout his career that when numerous gifts were received in his memory upon his passing in 2007 it was only fitting that his family chose to establish a family fund in his honor.
"Through his life and work, our dad inspired a commitment to service and social justice—whether that was to school, church, family, or the environment. The way he lived his life and the lessons he taught live on in his students, friends, and family," said son Peter Konwerski.
Older son, Paul Konwerski agreed. "Growing up in and around the Valley, I couldn't go anywhere without someone who knew my father: the insurance agent, mortgage broker, bankers, even the police. They would all tell me he was a great man who was very fair. Everyone dreams of helping the community but only a few do. By setting up this Fund, we wanted to carry on the lessons learned from both our parents in helping and caring for people and your community."
It is clear that the children of Paul Konwerski learned many lessons about philanthopy and community from both their parents. "I'm abundantly proud of my children for their decision to set up the Paul J. Konwerski Family Fund in memory of their father," said Paul's wife of 38 years, Gloria Van delft Konwerski. "Paul and I often spoke with great respect of the people who made financial contributions to the needs and children of the Naugatuck Valley. Our wish was to be able to offer a similar legacy one day. Their father would be thrilled!"
Grants from the Paul J. and Gloria Konwerski Family Fund will be made with recommendations from the family for a variety of programs and organizations in the Valley, including education. "Dad's reputation opened many doors and conversations in the Valley," said daughter Amy Konwerski. "We hope that his lively spirit can continue to spread to the next generation."
"Our dad spent nearly his whole life living or working in the Valley," added daughter Julie Mauri. "As a family, we created this Fund so his generosity, compassion, and commitment to community and caring can continue long into the future."