Community involvement and support are part of the fabric of The Pita Group, so in the spirit of the season, marketing intern Aleaha Gilbert asked the Pita team how they give back, in their personal and professional lives:
Team Pita – United Way Day of Caring
This fall, eight Pita employees participated in the United Way Day of Caring Campaign by volunteering their time at the Women’s League Child Development Center in Hartford. We’re not sure whose day was brightened more! The children they helped thanked them with a handmade banner, and the Pita team came back with smiles from ear to ear.
The United Way Community Campaign runs from September to mid-November. It is the largest annual health and human service fundraising effort in Connecticut. The Pita Group actively participates each year. The company also matches employee donations to the campaign, which supports programs at many Connecticut agencies.
Kim Pita, Managing Principal
Kim spends each and every day contributing to at least one of the many organizations with which she is involved. Kim was recently named chairwoman of the Small Business Advisory Council for the Connecticut Business & Industry Association (CBIA), where she serves on the Board of Directors. Kim also serves as president of the Board of Directors at Hartford Children’s Theatre, is a member of the Catalyst Steering Committee for Hartford Foundation for Public Giving and a member of the Board of Directors for Girl Scouts of Connecticut. Giving back has been one of her passions since childhood. She chooses to devote her time to causes she is passionate about, particularly those that impact women, children and the arts.
Paul Pita, CEO, Executive Creative Director
Paul is a member of the Executive Committee of the United Way of Central and Northeastern Connecticut. He serves on the board for the Center of Professional Development at the University of Hartford, where he shares his creative marketing skills to help make a difference. He enjoys working with organizations that he is passionate about and enjoys giving back. Golf Fore the Kids, another organization with which Paul actively serves, raises money to support the development of new aggressive cancer care strategies and treatment programs at the Jimmy Fund. Paul also participated in The Pita Group’s Day of Caring. Even in one day, he believes you can make a noticeable difference. He enjoyed being there to give the kids the love and attention they deserved.
Jenny Smith, Director of Public Relations
Jenny works closely with FIRST® (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) CT, this state’s arm of an international organization created to inspire young people’s interest and participation in science and technology. She serves on the FIRST CT Marketing Committee, where she works to reach out to current volunteers, potential volunteers and sponsors. Currently, FIRST CT volunteers are gearing up for the 2011-2012 season. Jenny is helping promote robotics, science and teamwork competitions that take place around the state between October and May with thousands of grade, middle and high school students. Jenny believes the promotion of FIRST’s program and events will get more young people interested in science, technology, math and engineering careers.
Darlene Sargent, Senior Designer
Darlene focuses some of her time volunteering with CASTLE, Inc. (Colchester Alternative School Age Total Learning Experience), a non-profit before- and after-school program. She currently serves on the Board of Directors and is involved with their fundraising committee. Her two children attend CASTLE after school every day, a place she describes as “far beyond a typical before- and after-school program.” CASTLE strives to provide a high-quality program, where school-aged children can learn about life skills, diversity, creativity and much more.
Steve Latronica, Interactive Developer
Steve serves on the Membership Development Committee for HYPE (Hartford Young Professionals and Entrepreneurs). Along with participation in monthly meetings, Steve also attends many of professional events hosted by HYPE. Steve has enjoyed meeting a variety of different people throughout HYPE. He strongly believes in their mission to guide young professionals in the Hartford area to become more involved in professional, social and community opportunities.
Karen Murray, Finance Manager
Karen has a strong history of volunteer work, including partnering with Habitat for Humanity and Kripalu. At Habitat, Karen has worked on fundraising campaigns, as well as assisting in building projects both locally and in Portugal. Kripalu, a yoga and wellness center in Massachusetts, provided Karen with the opportunity to work hands on in their kitchen, as well as become involved in the production department, assisting program presenters. Kripalu was part of her “Eat, Pray, Love” experience. Karen feels she is blessed and enjoys being able to help people in any way possible.
Nicole Stavola, Marketing Coordinator
Nicole has been recently inspired after volunteering during the United Way Day of Caring at the Women’s League Development Center. In the past, she worked with the Special Olympics and with children at a Hartford elementary school. Nicole feels it is rewarding to spend her time helping others and putting a smile on their faces.