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50 Most Influential People

Litchfield's artists, philanthropists, conservationists, restaurateurs, and more



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These hills are filled with talent and money and dedicated community spirit. We have among us great artists and shop owners, non-profit organizers and big-money philanthropists. They use their time, talent, and resources to improve this corner of paradise and to weave a certain charm into the fabric of Litchfield County.

Fran Keilty
The owner of the Hickory Stick Bookshop in Washington Depot, Keilty brings authors big and small to share their love of reading with a community that cherishes the written word.

Anne Maitland
Co-founder of Literacy Volunteers on the Green, a program dedicated to improving literacy in the targeted towns of Bridgewater, Kent, New Milford, Roxbury, Sherman, Warren, and Washington, Maitland has helped over 200 newcomers to the area learn to speak, read, and write English.

Anne Bass
A philanthropist living in South Kent, she directed a documentary “Dancing Across Borders,” which tells the story of her experience helping a young Cambodian dancer Sy Sar pursue a career. Her fundraising and community organizing skills are legendary.

Barbara Spiegel and Nancy Rogers
Spiegel is executive director and Rogers is a driving force with others of the Susan B. Anthony Project, which helps survivors of domestic and sexual abuse.

James Preston
The former CEO of Avon Products, Inc., he has helped create modern-day Kent, through development and stewardship of the local business community. He and his family now manage the Kent Village Barn Shops.

Jeffrey Engel
His love and knowledge of music makes his lectures on the topic the harmony of northwest Connecticut.

Bill O’Shaughnessy
The president of Whitney Radio and editorial director of WVOX and WRTN, he is an authoritative voice on air and around town.

James O’Shea and Charles Kafferman
For 20 years these two gentlemen have welcomed sophisticated diners into their West Street Grill for superb food, conviviality, and an unforgettable experience. 

Carole Peck
With her husband she operates the iconic Good News Café, using locally grown seasonal ingredients and a magic touch. 

Denis and Ann Leary
Denis is a comedic actor whose “Rescue Me” entertains millions. Ann is an author—her most recent novel is Outtakes From a Marriage. The couple’s charity, the Leary Fighters Foundation, funds fire departments nationally.

Dan Shaw
This former New York Times writer has brought big-city sophistication to Litch­field with ruralintelligence.com.

Doug Clement
Editor of the Litchfield County Times, he is the weekly voice of the region. 

John Millington
Former executive at Time Inc., he is president of the Steep Rock Land Trust and serves on the board of Connecticut Fund for the Environment. A notable keeper of the lands.

Eliot Wadsworth
Owner of White Flower Farm, his true passion is the Litchfield Hills Greenprint Project, an effort to protect critical watershed and farmland. 

Elyse Harney
A realtor, she represents the Harney family, which operates the Harney Tea Company and supports local organizations. 

Joe Cicio
The driving force behind the revitalization of Warren—including the Rooster Tail Inn and General Store.

Philip Roth
With two National Book Awards and a Pulitzer, he is one of America’s most admired purveyors of ideas.

Adam Van Doren
He carries on the Van Doren legacy intellectually and physically, by maintaining the farm and lands in Cornwall.

Diane von Furstenberg
Revered fashion designer, she sketches numerous local fundraisers, chief among them, the Housatonic Valley Association’s annual auction.

Oscar de La Renta
One of the world’s leading fashion designers, he is a consummate host and supporter of local organizations. 

Carolyne Roehm
A taste-maker and entertainer. An invitation to Weatherstone, her home in Sharon, is on everyone’s wish list.

Joan Rivers
This New Milford dwelling comedian, writer, and actress is an iconoclast, community spirit, and legend.

Diane Meier
She brings savvy marketing ideas to local projects, such as the Litchfield County Writers Project, based at UConn, Torrington. 

Frank Delaney
Author of The Celts, Tipperary, and more, with wife Diane Meier he brings intellectual life to Kent.

Chris Murphy
With the other elected officials among us, he carries the hopes and wishes of northwest Connecticut, in his case to the floor of the U.S. House.

Carolyn Klemm
For the past three decades she has become godmother of area real estate, gaining an intimacy with every significant property in the region.

David Owen
New Yorker staff writer, this Washington resident commits his non-writing hours to zoning for his community.

Maggie Smith
Owner of the spectacular Winvian Resort, she brings elegance to Litchfield.

Sheila Nevins
President of documentary and family programming for HBO, Nevins channels that experience into her Bantam Cinema.

Graydon Carter
Editing Vanity Fair, the world’s most sophisticated society magazine, certainly carries its own degree of influence.

Anthea Disney
This longtime colleague of Rupert Murdoch, she recently founded the Women’s Enterprise Initiative to help female entrepreneurs succeed.

Henry and Nancy Kissinger
This most famous international diplomat and magnetic socialite wife host soirées in their Kent home, while providing goodwill community gestures. 

Sam Waterston
With a trail of acting honors, he has led “Law & Order” by night and raised cows by day on his Cornwall farm.

Priscilla and James Buckley
Two of the ten Buckley children who grew up on Sharon’s Great Elm Estate, where they live today. Priscilla was an AP writer and managing editor of National Review; James was a U.S. senator, federal judge, and assistant secretary of state. 

Skip Barber
Owner of Lime Rock Park and founder of one of the world’s most famous racing schools, the former race-car driver has brought international fame to the northwest corner.

Davyne Verstandig
The Litchfield County Writers Project celebrates our county’s remarkable literary talent, and as its director, Verstandig has helped attract such writers as Arthur Miller, Charles Van Doren, Honor Moore, and Frank McCourt to its UConn Torrington programs.

Billy Neller
Along with Joe Concannon, Neller put together the Litchfield seven-mile road race that for 34 years now has been a regional powerhouse of a running race and an attraction for out-of-towners. 

Billy Morrison
Owner and inspiration behind the 7,000-square-foot Morrison Gallery in Kent, he brings his influence through the bold and often grand art that he shows but also as a representative of the large Litchfield County gallery scene.

Dan Hincks
He led the effort to revitalize Infinity Hall, the late 19th-century music hall, into a gorgeous entertainment venue, attracting people from all over to its restaurant, performances, and events.

James Patrick
As executive director of the beautifully restored Warner Theater, he represents the intellectual fortitude, financial doggedness, and creative beauty that saved this gem of a cultural arts center in Torrington from demise. 

Danielle Mailer
A talented painter and community supporter, she represents the tremendously vibrant visual arts community, with her bold strokes and colors.

Jill Clayburgh
An acclaimed actress, she brings her fame and talents to support the arts in the region, where she lives with husband and playwright David Rabe.

Rafe Churchill
As part of the Churchill family in Sharon that has been bringing quality design and construction to the region, he has been a pioneer in “green” building. 

Joanna Seitz
A leading purveyor of lifestyle design, J. Seitz & Co. has made New Preston a shopping destination.

Richard Lambertson
He and partner John Truex built a brand around their eponymous handbag and accessories business and now bring those talents to Tiffany & Co.

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Profiles

Your Guides to Leading Local Professionals

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December 2018

Byrde + the b is pleased to announce an exhibit of Walter Fields new  artwork opening on Friday November 2 from 5-7:00pm at Byrde + the b, 10 Titus Rd, Washington Depot, CT 06794.  The...

Cost: Free

Where:
Byrde + the b
10 Titus Road
Washington Depot, CT  06794
View map »


Sponsor: Byrde + the b
Telephone: 212 255-6247
Contact Name: Steven Miller
Website »

More information

Decorating gingerbread houses has been a tradition at Hunt Hill Farm for many years. We invite you to join us this year with pastry chef extraordinaire Claire Bevington.

Cost: $90.00

Where:
Hunt Hill Farm
44 Upland Road
New Milford, CT  06776
View map »


Telephone: 860-355-0300
Contact Name: Kimberly
Website »

More information

The Fine Line Art Gallery’s Holiday Art Show 'Miniature Masterpieces' features artwork perfect for gift-giving. The exhibit will include small works of art, such as miniature...

Cost: Admission Free

Where:
Fine Line Art Gallery
319 Main Street South
Woodbury, CT  06798
View map »


Sponsor: Fine Line Art Gallery
Telephone: 203-266-0110
Contact Name: Mally DeSomma
Website »

More information

What sets the Washington Art Association’s Annual Holiday Sale apart from others is not only the exquisitely hand crafted gifts by local artisans, but a talented group of volunteers designers and...

Cost: FREE

Where:
Washington Art Association & Gallery
4 Bryan Plaza
Washington Depot, CT  06794
View map »


Sponsor: Washington Art Association & gallery
Telephone: 860-868-2878
Contact Name: Ginger Nelsen
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

What sets the Washington Art Association’s Annual Holiday Sale apart from others is not only the exquisitely hand crafted gifts by local artisans, but a talented group of volunteers designers and...

Cost: FREE

Where:
Washington Art Association & Gallery
4 Bryan Plaza
Washington Depot, CT  06794
View map »


Sponsor: Washington Art Association & gallery
Telephone: 860-868-2878
Contact Name: Ginger Nelsen
Website »

More information

Byrde + the b is pleased to announce an exhibit of Walter Fields new  artwork opening on Friday November 2 from 5-7:00pm at Byrde + the b, 10 Titus Rd, Washington Depot, CT 06794.  The...

Cost: Free

Where:
Byrde + the b
10 Titus Road
Washington Depot, CT  06794
View map »


Sponsor: Byrde + the b
Telephone: 212 255-6247
Contact Name: Steven Miller
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Byrde + the b is pleased to announce an exhibit of Walter Fields new  artwork opening on Friday November 2 from 5-7:00pm at Byrde + the b, 10 Titus Rd, Washington Depot, CT 06794.  The...

Cost: Free

Where:
Byrde + the b
10 Titus Road
Washington Depot, CT  06794
View map »


Sponsor: Byrde + the b
Telephone: 212 255-6247
Contact Name: Steven Miller
Website »

More information

What sets the Washington Art Association’s Annual Holiday Sale apart from others is not only the exquisitely hand crafted gifts by local artisans, but a talented group of volunteers designers and...

Cost: FREE

Where:
Washington Art Association & Gallery
4 Bryan Plaza
Washington Depot, CT  06794
View map »


Sponsor: Washington Art Association & gallery
Telephone: 860-868-2878
Contact Name: Ginger Nelsen
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

What sets the Washington Art Association’s Annual Holiday Sale apart from others is not only the exquisitely hand crafted gifts by local artisans, but a talented group of volunteers designers and...

Cost: FREE

Where:
Washington Art Association & Gallery
4 Bryan Plaza
Washington Depot, CT  06794
View map »


Sponsor: Washington Art Association & gallery
Telephone: 860-868-2878
Contact Name: Ginger Nelsen
Website »

More information

Byrde + the b is pleased to announce an exhibit of Walter Fields new  artwork opening on Friday November 2 from 5-7:00pm at Byrde + the b, 10 Titus Rd, Washington Depot, CT 06794.  The...

Cost: Free

Where:
Byrde + the b
10 Titus Road
Washington Depot, CT  06794
View map »


Sponsor: Byrde + the b
Telephone: 212 255-6247
Contact Name: Steven Miller
Website »

More information

Join us for a free informational talk about the uses and benefits of CBD oil hosted by the founders of Ropana. Attendees will also be able to take advantage of an extra 15% off Ropana products...

Cost: Free - registration requested

Where:
New Morning Market
129 Main St North
Woodbury, CT  06798
View map »


Sponsor: New Morning Market
Telephone: 203-263-4868
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

What sets the Washington Art Association’s Annual Holiday Sale apart from others is not only the exquisitely hand crafted gifts by local artisans, but a talented group of volunteers designers and...

Cost: FREE

Where:
Washington Art Association & Gallery
4 Bryan Plaza
Washington Depot, CT  06794
View map »


Sponsor: Washington Art Association & gallery
Telephone: 860-868-2878
Contact Name: Ginger Nelsen
Website »

More information

Join us on Thursdays in December to celebrate a month of giving for the Audubon at Bent of the River.  Each Thursday morning, we will be joined by Kate Pratt who will have a bird-themed story...

Cost: Free - registration requested

Where:
New Morning Market
129 Main St North
Woodbury, CT  06798
View map »


Sponsor: New Morning Market
Telephone: 203-263-4868
Website »

More information

Byrde + the b is pleased to announce an exhibit of Walter Fields new  artwork opening on Friday November 2 from 5-7:00pm at Byrde + the b, 10 Titus Rd, Washington Depot, CT 06794.  The...

Cost: Free

Where:
Byrde + the b
10 Titus Road
Washington Depot, CT  06794
View map »


Sponsor: Byrde + the b
Telephone: 212 255-6247
Contact Name: Steven Miller
Website »

More information

KMR Arts presents Mark Seliger: Platinum Prints. The exhibition opens on Saturday, October 6, 2018 from 3-6 pm with a reception and book signing of the monograph, MARK SELIGER PHOTOGRAPHS, with the...

Cost: no charge

Where:
KMR Arts
2 Titus Road
Washington Depot, CT  06794
View map »


Sponsor: KMR Arts
Telephone: (860)868-7533
Contact Name: Kathy McCarver Root
Website »

More information

The Fine Line Art Gallery’s Holiday Art Show 'Miniature Masterpieces' features artwork perfect for gift-giving. The exhibit will include small works of art, such as miniature...

Cost: Admission Free

Where:
Fine Line Art Gallery
319 Main Street South
Woodbury, CT  06798
View map »


Sponsor: Fine Line Art Gallery
Telephone: 203-266-0110
Contact Name: Mally DeSomma
Website »

More information

EVERY THURSDAY | 7:30 PM - 10:00 pm Music | Spoken Word | Comedy | More Hosted by Don Lowe Hunt Hill Farm is excited to announce OpenMic night every Thursday night.  Please stop by to...

Cost: donation

Where:
Hunt Hill Farm
44 Upland Road
New Milford, CT  06776
View map »


Sponsor: Hunt Hill Farm
Telephone: 860.355.0300
Contact Name: John C. Maxwell III
Website »

More information

The Connecticut Dance Theatre, under the artistic director, Donna Bonasera, presents a community collaboration for the young and the young at heart. Experience the timeless classic, The Nutcracker,...

Cost: $22-$25

Where:
Thomaston Opera House
158 Main St.
Level 5
Thomaston, CT  06787
View map »


Sponsor: Landmark Community Theatre
Telephone: 860-283-6250
Contact Name: Jeffrey Dunn
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

What sets the Washington Art Association’s Annual Holiday Sale apart from others is not only the exquisitely hand crafted gifts by local artisans, but a talented group of volunteers designers and...

Cost: FREE

Where:
Washington Art Association & Gallery
4 Bryan Plaza
Washington Depot, CT  06794
View map »


Sponsor: Washington Art Association & gallery
Telephone: 860-868-2878
Contact Name: Ginger Nelsen
Website »

More information

Byrde + the b is pleased to announce an exhibit of Walter Fields new  artwork opening on Friday November 2 from 5-7:00pm at Byrde + the b, 10 Titus Rd, Washington Depot, CT 06794.  The...

Cost: Free

Where:
Byrde + the b
10 Titus Road
Washington Depot, CT  06794
View map »


Sponsor: Byrde + the b
Telephone: 212 255-6247
Contact Name: Steven Miller
Website »

More information

FRIDAY FEAST AND DANCING FEET.  Join us for our Thanksgiving Celebration of our Friday Feast and Dancing Feet with music by Michael Ciulla.  Pre-registration is required.

Cost: $7.00 pp

Where:
Litchfield Community Center
421 Bantam Road
Litchfield, CT  06759
View map »


Sponsor: Litchfield Community Center
Telephone: 860-567-8302
Website »

More information

We will celebrate the Winter Solstice in conjunction with the power of the Full Moon when the veil between the dimensions is thin. It is the optimal time to set our intentions for the New Year,...

Cost: $20.00

Where:
New Morning Market
129 Main St North
Woodbury, CT  06798
View map »


Sponsor: New Morning Market
Telephone: 203-263-4868
Website »

More information

KMR Arts presents Mark Seliger: Platinum Prints. The exhibition opens on Saturday, October 6, 2018 from 3-6 pm with a reception and book signing of the monograph, MARK SELIGER PHOTOGRAPHS, with the...

Cost: no charge

Where:
KMR Arts
2 Titus Road
Washington Depot, CT  06794
View map »


Sponsor: KMR Arts
Telephone: (860)868-7533
Contact Name: Kathy McCarver Root
Website »

More information

The Fine Line Art Gallery’s Holiday Art Show 'Miniature Masterpieces' features artwork perfect for gift-giving. The exhibit will include small works of art, such as miniature...

Cost: Admission Free

Where:
Fine Line Art Gallery
319 Main Street South
Woodbury, CT  06798
View map »


Sponsor: Fine Line Art Gallery
Telephone: 203-266-0110
Contact Name: Mally DeSomma
Website »

More information

The Connecticut Dance Theatre, under the artistic director, Donna Bonasera, presents a community collaboration for the young and the young at heart. Experience the timeless classic, The Nutcracker,...

Cost: $22-$25

Where:
Thomaston Opera House
158 Main St.
Level 5
Thomaston, CT  06787
View map »


Sponsor: Landmark Community Theatre
Telephone: 860-283-6250
Contact Name: Jeffrey Dunn
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Decorating gingerbread houses has been a tradition at Hunt Hill Farm for many years. We invite you to join us this year with pastry chef extraordinaire Claire Bevington.

Cost: $90.00

Where:
Hunt Hill Farm
44 Upland Road
New Milford, CT  06776
View map »


Telephone: 860-355-0300
Contact Name: Kimberly
Website »

More information

Paul Winter’s Winter Solstice Celebration embraces the spirit of the holidays within the extraordinary acoustics of the world’s largest cathedral, The Cathedral Church of Saint John the Divine....

Cost: $90.00 pp

Where:
Litchfield Community Center
421 Bantam Road
Litchfield, CT  06759
View map »


Telephone: 860-567-8302
Contact Name: Berta Andrulis Mette
Website »

More information

Byrde + the b is pleased to announce an exhibit of Walter Fields new  artwork opening on Friday November 2 from 5-7:00pm at Byrde + the b, 10 Titus Rd, Washington Depot, CT 06794.  The...

Cost: Free

Where:
Byrde + the b
10 Titus Road
Washington Depot, CT  06794
View map »


Sponsor: Byrde + the b
Telephone: 212 255-6247
Contact Name: Steven Miller
Website »

More information

KMR Arts presents Mark Seliger: Platinum Prints. The exhibition opens on Saturday, October 6, 2018 from 3-6 pm with a reception and book signing of the monograph, MARK SELIGER PHOTOGRAPHS, with the...

Cost: no charge

Where:
KMR Arts
2 Titus Road
Washington Depot, CT  06794
View map »


Sponsor: KMR Arts
Telephone: (860)868-7533
Contact Name: Kathy McCarver Root
Website »

More information

What sets the Washington Art Association’s Annual Holiday Sale apart from others is not only the exquisitely hand crafted gifts by local artisans, but a talented group of volunteers designers and...

Cost: FREE

Where:
Washington Art Association & Gallery
4 Bryan Plaza
Washington Depot, CT  06794
View map »


Sponsor: Washington Art Association & gallery
Telephone: 860-868-2878
Contact Name: Ginger Nelsen
Website »

More information

The Fine Line Art Gallery’s Holiday Art Show 'Miniature Masterpieces' features artwork perfect for gift-giving. The exhibit will include small works of art, such as miniature...

Cost: Admission Free

Where:
Fine Line Art Gallery
319 Main Street South
Woodbury, CT  06798
View map »


Sponsor: Fine Line Art Gallery
Telephone: 203-266-0110
Contact Name: Mally DeSomma
Website »

More information

The Connecticut Dance Theatre, under the artistic director, Donna Bonasera, presents a community collaboration for the young and the young at heart. Experience the timeless classic, The Nutcracker,...

Cost: $22-$25

Where:
Thomaston Opera House
158 Main St.
Level 5
Thomaston, CT  06787
View map »


Sponsor: Landmark Community Theatre
Telephone: 860-283-6250
Contact Name: Jeffrey Dunn
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

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