Long Wharf Theatre to honor DeStefano and Levin with the Founders Award October 9

Long Wharf Theatre will honor outgoing New Haven Mayor John DeStefano and Yale University President Emeritus Richard Levin with the organization’s Founders Award.

The ceremony will take place on Wednesday, October 9 at the Union League Cafe. The Founders Award was created to acknowledge organizations, businesses and individuals who have made long term outstanding contributions to Long Wharf Theatre. The theatre’s founders were known for their commitment and dedication and the award seeks to honor those who mirror those same qualities.

“These two men have had an indelible impact on the last two decades in this city. Thanks to their hard work, they’ve helped to create a vibrant, lively city. They’ve been friends to Long Wharf Theatre over the years and we are extremely grateful for their service,” said Artistic Director Gordon Edelstein.

“Both President Levin and Mayor DeStefano have been outstanding supporters of Long Wharf over the last twenty years.  We are grateful for their enthusiasm for our work and our role in New Haven, and cannot thank them enough,” said Managing Director Joshua Borenstein.

John DeStefano, New Haven’s 49th mayor is completing 10 terms in office, making him the city’s longest serving chief executive. He was sworn in in 1994. During Mayor DeStefano’s tenure virtually every public school has been rebuilt under the $1.5 billion Citywide School Construction Program.

With the understanding that what occurs in these school buildings is equally important; Mayor DeStefano launched the ambitious School Change Initiative in 2009. The goals of School Change are to raise test scores to at least the state average, eliminate the achievement gap; cut the high school dropout rate in half; and ensure that every student is academically prepared and financially able to attend, succeed in and graduate from college.

Mayor DeStefano’s economic policies have focused on two core areas: pursuing mixed-use development and growing New Haven as an economic hub for the bio-technology, pharmaceutical, research and life-science industries. At Mayor DeStefano’s direction, New Haven became the first city in the United States to issue municipal identification cards, the Elm City Resident Card.

Deeply committed to the city of New Haven, Mayor John DeStefano is a lifelong resident of New Haven and the son of a New Haven police officer. He and his wife, Kathy DeStefano, met at the University of Connecticut as undergraduates, where he also earned a Masters in Public Administration.  Kathy DeStefano is a first grade teacher and they are the parents of two sons.

Richard C. Levin is recognized as one of the leaders of American higher education. Prior to assuming the presidency in 1993, he was Dean of Yale’s Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. A distinguished economist, he has served as Chair of Yale’s Economics Department and has been a member of Yale’s faculty since 1974.

Under President Levin’s leadership, Yale completed a $1.7 billion fundraising campaign, and invested more than $2 billion in campus renovation and building programs. To ensure Yale’s preeminence in research and discovery, he  committed $1 billion to renovate and expand Yale’s medical and science facilities, including the construction of five new science and engineering buildings; one of the largest new medical research facilities in the United States recently opened.

President Levin developed an effective partnership with the City of New Haven to expand commercial activity near the campus and increase the number of new local companies based on Yale research. During President Levin’s term more than $1.5 billion was invested in Yale spin-off companies, and Yale directly contributed $100 million to improvements in the City of New Haven since 1993. As a part of President Levin’s commitment to community development, Yale also supports numerous programs that provide New Haven with the expertise and services of faculty and students.

A native of San Francisco, President Levin received his bachelor’s degree in history from Stanford University in 1968 and studied politics and philosophy at Oxford University, where he earned a Bachelor of Letters degree. In 1974 he received his Ph.D. in economics from Yale and was named to the Yale faculty. He and his wife, Jane, are longtime New Haven residents. They have four children and one grandchild.

For more information about Long Wharf Theatre, visit www.longwharf.org or call 203-787-4282.