Shelton family honored at gala for their charity role

Glitz, glamour and giving were part of the mood of the Kennedy Center’s 49th annual Four Seasons Ball. Nearly 200 guests attended the charity gala at the Patterson Club in Fairfield, which honored the DiMatteo family of Shelton.

The DiMatteo family created a charitable foundation eight years ago through the family’s insurance business, known as the DiMatteo Group.

Guests gathered together to sample the cuisine and dance to live music. Not your typical soirée, attendees played “Heads or Tails” and bid on the “Extreme Makeover” of Broadhurst Manor — a residential group home — in Fairfield.

This gala was co-chaired by Bob and Barbara Scinto of Fairfield, while Cara Mocarski of Shelton chaired the event’s Tribute Journal. The DiMatteo family was feted as this year’s Tribute Journal honoree.

The ball raised $109,000 for the Kennedy Center’s residential services for people with disabilities. Since its inception in 1964, the Four Seasons Ball has generated more than $2 million.

Senators to mayors attended

Several dignitaries attended the event, including U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal, Shelton Mayor Mark Lauretti, state Rep. Tony Hwang and Greater Valley Chamber of Commerce President Bill Purcell.

As part of the evening’s festivities, Kennedy Center President and CEO Martin D. Schwartz was honored by the organization’s board of directors for his 35 years of leadership in making this major rehabilitation agency one of the largest in the state.

Some of the event’s proceeds will be used to benefit Broadhurst Manor in Fairfield, which became the Kennedy Center’s sixth residential group home in 1985. Funds will help paint the interior walls, refinish kitchen cabinets, and install new windows, light fixtures, countertops and flooring.

Foundation was tribute to ‘Tony’ DiMatteo

The DiMatteo Family Foundation was created eight years ago by the family as a tribute to their late father, Anthony “Tony” DiMatteo, who was battling cancer at the time.

The family started an annual golf tournament as the main funding source for the foundation. The tournament has raised more than $225,000 for various local and national charities, including the Kennedy Center, Spooner House in Shelton, and medical research organizations.

“Our family foundation is committed to funding research, education and finding a cure for diseases that have touched the lives of our friends, families, clients and staff,” said John DiMatteo, president of the DiMatteo Group.

The family-owned and -operated DiMatteo Group was founded 53 years ago and specializes in insurance, employee benefits, income tax and financial services.

R.D. Scinto of Shelton was top sponsor

The top sponsor of the Four Seasons Ball was R.D. Scinto Inc. in Shelton.

Other sponsors were GE Capital, People’s United Bank, the DiMatteo Group, Goodnow Investment Group in Darien, William and Gloria Paul Family Foundation, Peter and Carla Gavey of Fairfield, the Foley family of Fairfield, Bigelow Tea, Merit Insurance, Newtown Savings Bank, Pullman & Comley, Silverstone Electric, BlumShapiro, and Beltone Hearing Centers of New York and Connecticut.

About the Kennedy Center

The Kennedy Center is a nationally accredited, nonprofit rehabilitation organization that annually serves 2,400 individuals with disabilities and special needs, from birth to their senior years.

The Kennedy Center operates 26 community experience programs, 16 group homes, an industries program composed of six businesses, supported and competitive employment and job placement services, a family support and respite service, travel training, and a variety of children’s programs.