Business leaders to be honored by Valley chamber

The Greater Valley Chamber of Commerce will recognize four individuals and one organization for outstanding achievements in the community on Wednesday, Oct. 28, at the 44th Annual Gold Seal Awards Banquet.

The chamber will present five awards consisting of three Gold Seal Awards, the Platinum Award and the Silver Medal Award to the region’s business and community leaders who exemplify the spirit of selflessness and volunteerism. Joyce Barcley of Seymour, the 2009 Gold Seal recipient, will be presiding over the event as master of ceremonies.

Gold Seal

The Gold Seal Award is given annually by the chamber to a recipient who demonstrates outstanding community service through dedicated and effective leadership.

The Gold Seal Award this year is being presented to Harry Burlakoff (Minuteman Press, Shelton), Frederick Serra (Serra & Delvecchio, Shelton) and Bob VanEgghen (PerkinElmer, Shelton).

Burlakoff is an active member of the Valley United Way Corporate Volunteer Council in addition to the Shelton Exchange Club and Seeds to Leads Networking Group.

Serra currently volunteers with the Derby-Shelton Rotary, Boys & Girls Club and PCRC Pedal for PCRC.

VanEgghen has devoted countless hours to the Greater Valley Salvation Army, Shelton Mentoring Program and Americares Homefront.


In 2001, in honor of the 30th Anniversary of the Gold Seal Awards, the chamber introduced the Platinum Award. It is presented to a past Gold Seal recipient of at least 10 years who is still dedicated to volunteering their time and resources on behalf of the Valley Community.

The year’s Platinum Award honoree is Ansonia resident, James E. Ryan, President, Shelton Economic Development Corporation and a 1998 Gold Seal Award recipient. Ryan is currently a member of the Board of Directors for the Community Foundation for Greater New Haven and is a founding member of the Valley Community Foundation. He is past president of the Connecticut Community Development Association and past chair of the Governor’s Central Housing Committee. He is a recipient of the Housatonic Boy Scouts of America Good Scout Award, Parent Child Resource Center Service to Youth Award and a Rotary Paul Harris Fellow.


The chamber has presented the Silver Medal Award to recognize groups or partnerships that have made extraordinary contributions to the community or to recognize an individual’s dedicated service and assistance to the community. This year’s Silver Medal Award recipient is VSSAC — Valley Substance Abuse Action Council (Ansonia) — which was created in 1990 to reduce alcohol, tobacco, other drug use, suicide, risky behaviors and promote good mental health in the region through community mobilization, public awareness and advocacy.
For more information, contact the Greater Valley Chamber at 203-925-4981.