Linda Berard – President
I am currently an Assistant Branch Manager at Liberty Bank and have worked in the banking industry for 35 years. I have been a volunteer at the meal center for many years. Giving back to the community is important to me and when asked to join the board in 2016 I jumped at the chance. I have always felt that food insecurity should be a top priority. I work tirelessly to ensure that those in need of a meal can always come to the Meal Center. I live in Waterford with my husband and two cats. In my spare time I love to garden and horseback ride.
Debbie Basnight – Vice President
I am currently employed at Electric Boat. I have been on the Board of Directors for 19 plus years. I am a member of Prince Hall Grand Chapter, Order of Eastern Star Inc., and Zeta Phi Beta Sorority. I am very active in the community in addition to being a notary public, a justice of the peace and an ordained minister. We moved to Connecticut in 1992 and my husband and I adopted our daughter in 1996 at the age of 5. She is a true blessing to us in so many ways. I live in New London with my husband.
Christine Schmidt – Secretary
I’ve been a volunteer at NLCMC serving, cooking and cleaning twice a week since 2008. I have been on the board since 2018 as secretary. The New London Community Meal Center provides good nutrition and an atmosphere of acceptance to everyone without verification of need. You show up – you get fed – no questions asked. Helping to feed 100 people a day has provided me with new friendships, new skills and a new point of view.
Ann Marie Bartelli
I am very fortunate to call New London my home; I also am blessed to have a family that taught me the value and importance of serving in your community. I am honored to part of such a wonderful organization. My family is very active in many local organizations; I’m very proud of their service and along with them I want to continue working for our community!
My wife Linda and I have been married for 45 years; we have three daughters and two grandchildren, who live in this area. We live in Waterford, but are originally from Northern Michigan (the U P). I am a Civil Engineer and have spent 20 years at Pfizer in charge of Global Capital Construction. The last 5 years, I worked for the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in Cambridge, MA, as a Program Manager for Capital Management and Maintenance. I am now retired. My wife and I spend our time grandparenting, traveling, gardening and doing home improvement projects. I am also a beekeeper.
I am retired from the Plumbers and Steam Fitters Local Union 777. I am currently a lobbyist for this union in Hartford during legislative sessions. I have been a board member since 2015. I serve on the board of directors for Jordan Cemetery. I am also a worship leader and serve as part of the facility and finance administration at Quaker Hill Baptist Church.
I am recently retired from Pfizer after working for more than 20 years in drug discovery research. I was born and raised in Connecticut and have lived in Waterford for more than 30 years. Throughout my life I have had a strong desire to give back to the community and to try to make the world a better place. I’ve been an active participant in and contributor to local school groups, youth services, food banks, the Waterford Public Library, and the Eastern Connecticut Symphony Youth Orchestra, often holding leadership positions. I consider it a great privilege to participate as a board member for the Meal Center and contribute to the important work it does.
I joined the board in 2017 and prior to that was a regular volunteer at the meal center. I live in Mystic with my wife, Lisa, and am a partner at the law firm of Halloran & Sage LLP. Over the years I have acted as counsel to or served on the boards of several other non-profits throughout the state.
I am a Senior Vice President and Director of Healthcare at Citizens Bank. In my current role I oversee the Bank’s healthcare banking programs throughout their eleven-state footprint and have over 30 years of banking experience. My involvement with the Meal Center goes back several years when I first volunteered serving meals. I have served on the Board since 2017.
I am a 38-year veteran of the automobile industry. After spending several years on the road consulting for large Tech companies, I started my own Agency and spend my days consulting with auto dealerships and groups on how to become more efficient and profitable. After attending a meal center fundraiser, I was invited to join its board. I’ve been looking for just the right opportunity to give back to the community and this, coupled with my love of all things food, gives me the ability to help a lot of people. I’m grateful for the opportunity to serve on the board.
Constantine (Dean) Panayotakis
I have been a board member since 2019. I have been the Manager of Medical Records in a variety of healthcare settings for 26 years including Southwest Community Health Center in Bridgeport, CT and Yale New Haven Hospital. For the past 11 years I have worked at Lawrence and Memorial Hospital. I am currently the Director of Health Information Management. I’ve always been active in school related community activities when my kids were younger. Now that they are grown, I have more time and felt the need to serve the New London community that I have been a part of for 10 years. We are all very committed to offering our time and services for the New London Community Meal Center.
The mission of the NLCMC is to provide the food insecure residents of New London County with nutritious meals in an environment of hospitality and respect.
The New London Community Meal Center Inc.
12 Montauk Avenue,
P.O. Box 945 New London, CT 06320