New Britain's Downes Construction Company unveils community giving program

Published on Tuesday, 26 March 2019 20:12
Written by Karla Santos


NEW BRITAIN – Downes Construction Company, LLC unveiled a community giving program as part of their 85 years in business celebrations on Tuesday; they announced the recipients of the donations are unsung hero teachers of the city, the Boys & Girls Clubs of Hartford and the The WorkPlace in Bridgeport.

Joseph Desautel, Jr., chief executive officer of Downes Construction Company among other company employees, state Sen. Gennaro Bizzarro, Nancy Sarra, Superintendent of the Consolidated School District of New Britain, Nelba Márquez-Greene and other community members took part in the event.

“Downes first projects were for the manufacturing companies in New Britain, including Stanley Works,” John Downes, III, president of Downes Construction Company, said. “While our foundation is in New Britain, over the decades we have grown to serve multiple communities in our great state. Therefore, our 85th anniversary was created to give back to some of the communities that we have served over the decades.”

Downes’ 85th anniversary giving program is modeled after the Ana Grace Project.

“Nelba was the catalyst for this whole giving campaign,” said Diana Colcord, Downes executive director of business development. “Through the Ana Grace Project, she connected us to the New Britain Consolidated School District.”

Downes’ give back campaign will give a $1,000 check to each of the 12 unsung hero teachers in each of the 12 elementary schools of the Consolidated School District of New Britain. The money is for the teachers to spend in their classroom. The first three teachers receiving the funds were announced at Tuesday’s event: Cathy Scanlon, of Gaffney Magnet Elementary School, Tamika Anderson, of New Britain Transitional Center and Butch Malinowski, of Chamberlain Elementary School. The rest of the teachers will be announced on surprise occasions.

The Boys & Girls Club of Hartford are also going to be helped through Downes’ give back campaign.

“What we are doing there is we are giving a monetary gift but more importantly, we are bringing in to their clubs the Architecture, Construction and Engineering (ACE) Mentor Program,” Colcord said. “That’s going to allow their club kids to learn and get exposed to the construction industry and work on tangible projects where they go and then they compete against other ACE Programs throughout the state and they can win in competitions and they can get scholarship money. We are providing the management and the volunteers to do the ACE Program within the club.”

The construction company is also partnering with The WorkPlace to get Bridgeport residents trained into construction careers.

“I’m thrilled,” Joseph Carbone, president and chief executive officer of The WorkPlace, said. “We need partners in our business, in particular the good employers to help to kind of nurture, inspire and work with people to develop careers.”

Bizzarro, who was one of the speakers at the event, said that the company has played an important role in the city throughout its 85 years, not only because of their business success, but also because of their community service.

“My parents taught me about hard work, dedication and determination,” Bizzarro said. “It’s obvious that Downes’ 85 years of success is the result of decades of hard work, dedication and determination.”

To learn more about Downes Construction Company, call 860-229-3755 or visit .

Karla Santos can be reached at 860-801-5079 or

Posted in New Britain Herald, Business, General News, New Britain on Tuesday, 26 March 2019 20:12. Updated: Tuesday, 26 March 2019 20:14.