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News Mar 3, 2009 - 3:59 AM

National MS Society, Connecticut Chapter elects new board officers

By Press Release

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Richard Simione
The National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Connecticut Chapter, elected a new slate of officers during the Chapter Board of Trustees meeting that was held on March 1.

Richard Simione, formerly the board’s treasurer, has been elected as chairperson for the next term. Simione, who is a partner at Rocky Hill and Hamden-based Simione, Macca and Larrow, has served as chairperson of the finance committee and co-chairs the MS Corporate Achievers, New Haven.

Currently, he serves as treasurer of the board of directors for the International Festival of Arts and Ideas and serves on its executive and finance Committees.

Previously, Simione served as chairman of the board of directors of the Greater New Haven Chamber of Commerce and served on its executive and finance Committees.

In 2007, Simione was honored as an MS Corporate Achiever for his work in raising awareness and funding for the fight against MS.

Jennifer Cox is the immediate past chair for the Board of Trustees where she also served on a multitude of chapter committees including audit, executive, finance, gala, government relations, and investment and currently chairs governance.

Cox, who is an attorney at Cox & Osowiecki, LLC in Hartford, was named an MS Corporate Achiever in 2003, continues to serve on the MS Corporate Achievers Advisory Council and is an alumni honoree.

Named a Board Member of the Year in 2007, Cox has provided support for events such as Walk MS, Women Against MS luncheons and MS Taste of Hope.

The Vice Chair Elect is Jack Betkoski, who is the vice chairman of the Connecticut Department of Public Utility Control and joined the Connecticut Chapter Board of Trustees in 2004.

Betkoski has served as co-chairperson of MS Corporate Achievers, Hartford for five years and was an honoree in 2005 and 2008. In 2006 and 2007, he served as co-chair of the chapter’s annual wine tasting event, MS Taste of Hope, and he captains a Walk MS team at the West Hartford site. In addition, Betkoski serves on the executive, personnel and governance committees.

Peter Porrino, who lives in Westport and is a partner and global director of insurance industry services at Ernst Young, is the board’s Vice Chair. Porrino is a past chair of the former Western Connecticut Chapter Board of Trustees and is a member of the National Advocacy Council of the National MS Society. In addition to being an active Walk MS fundraiser and bike ride volunteer, Porrino has been honored as an MS Hope Award recipient. Porrino also serves on the executive, finance and audit committees.

The new Secretary is Mary Rauscher, who is a former Western Connecticut Board member where she chaired the MS Dinner of Champions and continues to co-chair this event. Rauscher also served on the governance committee and is chair of the personnel committee.

Rauscher is currently a human resources consultant after being the chief administrative officer and senior vice president for Converium Reinsurance North America for 16 years.

More than 6,000 Connecticut residents are diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, a disease affecting the central nervous system. The cause is unknown and there currently is no cure. Symptoms can include, among other things, numbness in the limbs, difficulties with vision and speech, stiffness, loss of mobility and, in some more sever cases, total paralysis. The progress, severity, and specific symptoms of MS in any one person cannot be predicted.

To learn more about multiple sclerosis and the many ways the National MS Society, Connecticut Chapter helps, please visit www.ctfightsms.org.

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