NEWINGTON- Before his official swearing-in Wednesday, Connecticutâ€™s soon-to-be governor came to town on official pet business.
Gov.-elect Ned Lamont and Lt. Gov.-elect Susan Bysiewicz joined Newington officials at the Connecticut Humane Society headquarters Sunday. The visit was part of Lamont and Bysiewiczâ€™ Connecticutâ€™s Day of Service, which took them to nonprofit organizations across the state.
CHS staff presented a tour of the facility, home to the agencyâ€™s Pet Wellness and Adoption Center and Fox Memorial Clinic.
â€śI think it says something about the governor-elect that he is recognizing his constituents both two- and four-legged,â€ť CHS Executive Director Gordon Willard said. â€śItâ€™s certainly recognition of our 137 years in the state. It also indicates how important the non-profit sector and animal welfare are in Connecticut.â€ť
Director of Operations Theresa Geary led two dozen or so visitors past veterinary offices and quarantine areas, showing them where incoming animals receive vaccinations and treatment for illness or injury.
Along with the countless abandoned, abused or relinquished pets that find temporary shelter here, the facility also takes in about 40 dogs from down south each month as part of its rescue mission. They go through the usual medical clearance process before being readied for adoption.
â€śItâ€™s a commitment weâ€™ve made,â€ť Geary explained of this initiative. â€śWe have empty cages and the luxury of bringing in these other dogs while still supporting our Connecticut dogs.â€ť
Newington Mayor Roy Zartarian joined the group, along with state Rep.-elect Gary Turco, D-Newington.
â€śGiven the fact that community service and volunteerism are ingrained in Newingtonâ€™s fabric, Iâ€™m happy to be a part of it,â€ť the mayor said.
Newington resident Terry Borjeson helped Lamont with his campaign for governor and was proud to share one of the townâ€™s most valuable organizations.
â€śI like him a lot,â€ť Borjeson said. â€śI think heâ€™s made some really good choices so far.â€ť
Before leaving the Russell Road headquarters, Lamont shook hands with CHS staff and volunteers.
â€śI think they make a lot of people very happy here, by matching cats and dogs with people that need companionship and love,â€ť he said.
His day began at the New Covenant Center in Stamford and Homes for the Brave in Bridgeport. Lamont and Bysiewicz also made stops at the Childrenâ€™s Community Program in New Haven and the Beth-El Center in Milford, according to a schedule released to media.
The inauguration of Connecticutâ€™s 89th governor took place Wednesday at the William A. Oâ€™Neill State Armory in Hartford. It was followed by a parade and inaugural ball.
Erica Drzewiecki can be reached at 860-801-5097 or firstname.lastname@example.org.