Jeannette Ronson’s first novel transports the reader beyond the “Dirty Dancing” perspective to the often-overlooked Proletariat of the golden age of New York’s fabled Jewish Alps. She brings us into the world of bellhops, receptionists, handymen and others who worked at the summer retreats that once dotted the Catskills.

Her deft skill of description makes one feel as though he or she is at the pool, on the golf course, in the lobby or comedy club at Grossinger’s, Kutsher’s, the Concord, the Nevele or any of the legendary resorts of that era.
The book’s shiksa heroine, Samantha, seems to attract suitors like a limitless buffet, but her rough childhood and subsequent street smarts help her succeed.
Ms. Ronson, who lives in North Stamford near a golf curse, says in an online video interview that about half the activity in the book really happened.
I would love to hear more about her Borscht Belt tales. I hope a sequel comes out some day.

Jeannette is scheduled to sign copies of her book from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Wednesday Oct. 21 at the  Harry Bennett Branch of the Ferguson Library, 115 Vine Road, Stamford.

New, extended hours start Tuesday Sept.2

More city funds and other revenues will allow the Stamford library to open an extra 28 hours a week systemwide.

Main Library
Monday – Thursday
10 a.m. to 9 p.m.
10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
1 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Harry Bennett Branch
Monday & Wednesday
10 a.m. to 8 p.m.
10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Weed Memorial &
Hollander Branch
Tuesday & Thursday
10 a.m. to 7 p.m.
10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

South End Branch
Tuesday & Wednesday
10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
12 p.m. to 7 p.m.
10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Wednesday & Thursday
9:15 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Alan Murray, second from left, enjoys a game at Yankee Stadium this summer with his wife Lori, far left, friend Bob Kolb of Stamford, third from left, and sister-in-law Dale Sweeney of New Canaan, far right.

Alan Murray, second from left, enjoys a game at Yankee Stadium this summer with his wife Lori, far left, friend Bob Kolb of Stamford, third from left, and sister-in-law Dale Sweeney of New Canaan, far right.

After a short shift as president of the Washington think tank PEW Research Center, Wall Street Journal veteran Alan Murray of Greenwich is back in business — at Fortune magazine.

Murray, who also had been deputy managing editor, online executive editor and a columnist at the Journal, became top editor at New York City-based Fortune this month.

The New York Times reported in July that Time Inc. executives who had worked at the Journal approached Mr. Murray regarding Fortune’s top editing position. Fortune, which publishes 18 issues a year, is a unit of Time Inc.

Murray, who lived briefly in downtown Stamford before moving to Greenwich several years ago, told the Times that assets such as the annual Fortune 500 list attracted him to the business magazine known for its in-depth articles.

“Fortune means a lot to people who run sizable businesses, and has a great resonance overseas where businesses are popping up by the thousands every day,” he said.

Fortune recently started its own website; its journalism was previously on CNNMoney as part of a partnership.

Several media outlets said Murray’s online media expertise was the reason Fortune offered him the job.

“Alan’s diverse background uniquely positions him to lead Fortune,” Time Inc. Executive Vice President Todd Larsen said in a statement. “He is a digital champion and media visionary who can bridge every aspect of our business, moving effortlessly from the newsroom to the boardroom to television to conference stage.”

Mr. Murray’s predecessor, Andrew Serwer, had spoken enthusiastically of plans to expand the magazine online, and to expand its conference business. Mr. Murray said those would be areas of focus for him, too.

“… Fortune is one of the great iconic journalism brands in America,” Murray said in an interview with Adweek. “I’ve been a fan of it since I was very young. When I graduated from graduate school I applied to two places, The Wall Street Journal and Fortune magazine, so I’ve watched it change over time and I have great affection for it. It’s also in this somewhat peculiar position where it never had the opportunity to develop an effective digital presence because of the relationship with CNNMoney.com, so you have a situation where you have a great brand that needs help on the digital front and that’s an exciting challenge for me. The other thing is I love the conferences. I built the conference business at The Wall Street Journal.”
 Keeping a traditionally paper publication alive in the digital age will be a huge challenge for Fortune.

As recently as 2006, Time Inc., with a portfolio of more than 90 magazines and 45 websites, generated about $1 billion in earnings. That figure is now down to $370 million, and revenue has declined in 22 of the last 24 quarters.

The magazine unit was spun off from the Time Warner media conglomerate as its own company in June, with $1.3 billion in debt, including $600 million toward a one-time cash dividend to Time Warner shareholders.

Mr. Murray said he was not discouraged by reports of imminent cost-cutting at the new company. He was told, he said, that “the best ideas are going to get funded.”

He will be the 17th editor since Fortune was founded in 1930.

Fortune’s circulation has held steady around 850,000 for the last few years, according to the Alliance for Audited Media. It was up 6 percent in revenue for the first half of 2014, the company said in a statement.

Murray, who joined PEW in 2012, also has experience in television news. He served as CNBC’s Washington, D.C., bureau chief and was co-host of “Capital Report with Alan Murray and Gloria Borger.”  While working at CNBC, he also wrote the Journal’s weekly “Political Capital” column.  Prior to that, he spent a decade as the Washington bureau chief for The Wall Street Journal.

Mr. Murray joined The Wall Street Journal in 1983, as a reporter covering economic policy. He was named Washington deputy bureau chief in January 1992 and became bureau chief in September 1993. During his tenure as bureau chief, the Washington bureau won three Pulitzer Prizes, as well as many other awards.

Mr. Murray is the author of three best-selling books: “Revolt in the Boardroom, The New Rules of Power in Corporate America,” published by HarperCollins in 2007; “The Wealth of Choices: How the New Economy Puts Power in Your Hands and Money in Your Pocket,” published by Random House in 1991; and “Showdown at Gucci Gulch: Lawmakers, Lobbyists and the Unlikely Triumph of Tax Reform,” co-authored with Jeffrey Birnbaum and published by Random House in 1987. “Gucci Gulch” received the American Political Science Association’s Carey McWilliams Award in 1988. Mr. Murray also garnered two Overseas Press Club awards for his writings on Asia, as well as a Gerald Loeb award and a John Hancock award for his coverage of the Federal Reserve.

Mr. Murray began his journalism career in June 1977 as the business and economics editor of the Chattanooga (Tenn.) Times. He joined the Congressional Quarterly in Washington as a reporter in June 1980, and the following year became a reporter at the Japan Economic Journal in Tokyo on a Luce Fellowship.

He serves on the Governing Council of the Miller Center for Public Affairs at the University of Virginia and is a member of the Gridiron Club, The Economic Club of New York and the Council on Foreign Relations. He has served on the Board of Visitors of the University of North Carolina.

Mr. Murray received a bachelor’s degree in English literature from the University of North Carolina, where he was a John Motley Morehead scholar, a merit scholar and a member of Phi Beta Kappa. He earned a master’s degree in economics at the London School of Economics.  In 2005, he completed the Stanford Executive Program.

He is married to Dr. Lori Murray, formerly of Stamford. She teaches national security at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Md., and had been a foreign policy consultant and former special adviser to President Bill Clinton for chemical weapons. 

Consolidated Management Group, a company that manages condominium associations and commercial property in Connecticut, is scheduled to relocate its headquarters from Westport to 98 East Ave. in Norwalk on Wednesday Feb. 26.

The new office is across street from the Norwalk Inn & Conference Center.

CMG’s other offices are in Greenwich, Orange and South Windsor, according to its website C-mgi.com.

The Westport operation had been at 1555 Post Road East.


David Cingari and Mayor Finch make it official on Feb 12 (photo from David's Soundview Catering)David Cingari and Mayor Finch make it official on Feb 12 at the Cafe 1000 Grand Opening party!  Just a note:  not sure we can trust him with scissors that big!  Eeek.  (all photos from David’s Soundview Catering)

David Cingari is. the. man.  He’s a graduate of not only New Haven Hotel & Restaurant Management, but also of the Culinary Institute of America.  On a personal level, he is probably one of the nicest and most hilarious guys that you’ll ever met, and he’s also the proud owner and Head Chef of David’s Soundview Catering in Stamford.  We got to know him and the DSC crew at the Stamford Museum & Nature Center’s Maple Sugar Chef’s Challenge, and at many charitable events that they support and help organize.  Needless to say, when it comes to awesome food like their redonkulous taco bar that we tasted at Fine Food for…

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Mary Ann Healy, a former school teacher and airline stewardess who lived in Stamford for 63 years, passed away peacefully Wednesday Feb. 5, 2014, at home with her loving family at her side. She was 86 years old and fought a courageous battle with lymphoma.
She was born July 28, 1927, in St. Stephen, Minnesota, to the late Stanley and Margaret Philipsek Beniek.
Mary Ann grew up on her family’s farms and graduated from Little Falls High School in Minnesota.
After attending St. Cloud State University, she taught elementary school in Minnesota before joining Delta Airlines as a stewardess as they were called in the glamorous years of airline travel.
During one of her many trips, she met her future husband John “Jack” Healy in Dallas after a mutual friend arranged their first date.  The couple married in 1951 and lived in Stamford where Mary Ann raised six children and dedicated herself to the care of her son Peter after an accident that left him a quadriplegic at age 19.
Mrs. Healy was a member of St. Gabriel Parish in Stamford and she and her family were members of the former Scofield Beach Club and Newfield Swim Club.
Mary Ann and Jack organized dances at the former Terrace Club in Stamford, participated in dance weekends and competitions throughout the tri-state area and were members of the United States Amateur Ballroom Dancers Association. Mary Ann was charismatic and had the rare gift of illuminating every room she walked into.
In addition to her husband of 63 years, Mary Ann is survived by five sons: Roger (Marilyn) of Fairfield, Peter of Stamford, Thomas (Karen) of New Canaan, Todd of Stamford and John (Kristin) of Ridgefield;  a daughter: Sally Ann Healy of Stamford; 10 grandchildren and a great-grandson.
She is also survived by four brothers and two sisters in Minnesota.
 Mrs. Healy was predeceased by two other sisters and her stepmother, Anna Skudlarek Beniek.
Visiting hours are from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. Sunday Feb. 9 at the Thomas M. Gallagher Funeral Home, 453 Shippan Ave., Stamford. A memorial service is scheduled for 11 a.m. Monday Feb. 10 at St. Cecilia’s Church, 1084 Newfield Ave., Stamford. Interment will follow in Fairfield Memorial Park on Oaklawn Avenue in Stamford.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Myasthenia Gravis Foundation of America, Inc., 355 Lexington Ave., 15th Floor, New York, N.Y., 10017, or to the American Cancer Society.



The odds of a chef making it onto local TV, Food Network, The Talk, having recipes shared by people like Oprah, and having a wildly successful cookbook are pretty slim.  So, you could imagine how much crazier it would be to stick two people into the equation, taking over the cooking and recipe scene together.  But, that’s just what Joy and Judy Paoletti, The Twice Baked Twins, have done.  While they are identical twins, they show you how to make a dish in not so identical ways:  Joy makes the traditional version, while Judy creates the time-saving version.  As we suggested, you might have seen The Twice Baked Twins on Food Network’s “Dear Food Network,” in your local paper, on The Talk, in countless online magazines, and even on a weekly basis on our own local Better CT on WFSB.

The Twice Baked Twins

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