This new award honors the legacy of state Rep. Quentin “Q” Williams. Q was a great friend of CMSC and a champion for all of Connecticut’s downtowns. This award honors those who embody his greatest strengths, including tireless advocacy, working collaboratively to achieve common goals, bringing a multitude of voices to the fore, and working to create downtowns that are inclusive and welcoming to all.
For several years, Sarah has exemplified excellence in Main Street management. She approaches the work with the entire ecosystem in mind, building partnerships with all stakeholders, creating innovative programs to support businesses and build excitement, applying her vast knowledge to help developers and businesses navigate regulation and permitting, and working round the clock to keep Simsbury on the map as a wonderful place to work, live and play.
However, it was during the uncertainty and upheaval brought by COVID where Sarah’s acumen was critically important to the survival of many businesses in her downtown. Sarah worked tirelessly to get PPE out into the community, to help businesses apply for special loans and grants, problem-solving ways to continue operations during lockdown like creating a curbside delivery system on the fly, advocating for support from the state, interfacing with public safety and public health to make reopening easier, and keeping the entire main street community constantly apprised of new information through regular communication. Sarah’s availability, her support, and her ability to make things happen were key not only to the survival of her main street businesses but bolstered their spirits during an incredibly challenging time. Heroes show their mettle in times of crisis and Sarah, a downtown hero before COVID, certainly saved the day for Simsbury when she was most needed.