The name DiCenso is synonymous with Derby. For so many kids and families growing up in this great city, I can say with confidence that the DiCenso family has positively affected the lives of so many.
Carmen DiCenso spent 30 years coaching Derby Pop Warner and Derby High School football. As a coach, his positive impact on his players went well beyond the football field, motivating and inspiring these young athletes to be better people both on and off the field.
Upon retirement from his career in 2010, Carmen’s schedule only became filled even more. Carmen began working as the physical education teacher at St. Mary-St. Michael School, continuing to positively influence children. Carmen also served as a mentor at Benhaven to improve the quality of life for students with autism. Carmen’s positive approach at Benhaven helped his students develop skills that will be necessary as they become adults.
Additionally, Carmen serves as the maître d at Italian Pavilion.
If all of this were not enough, Carmen decided in 2011 to seek elected office to represent the City of Derby on the Board of Aldermen/Alderwomen, where he currently works tirelessly as the two-term president of this board. In addition, Carmen has served on many other committees for Derby, including the Capital Planning Commission, Baseball Field Relocation Committee, and most importantly, as the chairman of the Blight Committee.
Derby’s crackdown on blighted houses and buildings across our city is a direct result of Carmen’s impressive work ethic. There is good reason that 7 of the 8 Democratic members of Derby’s Board of Aldermen/Alderwomen support Carmen DiCenso to be our next mayor.
Finally, few people know that Carmen donated a basketball hoop at Irving School for neighborhood kids to enjoy. Most people are unaware of this generous donation because Carmen did not publicize it. It was not done for political gain, but rather to provide Derby’s children with a positive recreational opportunity that promotes wellness.
Growing up in Derby, I watched my grandfather’s involvement in politics. Campaign season was always exciting as I would attend meetings with him and help post yard signs around town. It was this experience that inspired me to earn a degree in Political Science and become involved in the Derby Democratic Town Committee.
However, as my wife and I began a family, my time was significantly more limited and I found myself virtually uninvolved in Derby politics. Yet, after several years with Derby politics in my rearview mirror, I immediately accepted Carmen’s invitation to become a part of his campaign team without hesitation. How could I decline an opportunity to help Carmen after all he and his family have done for my hometown?
Carmen’s commitment to family and commitment to our community are evident and unmatched by few, much less any candidate seeking to be our mayor.
As an unwavering supporter of Derby and by leading by example, Carmen DiCenso’s positive influence continues as strongly as ever today. By chance or by will, Carmen DiCenso has made our community better than he found it and will continue to do so if given the opportunity to become Derby’s next mayor.
I am encouraged by Carmen’s candidacy for mayor because he fully and completely understands the needs and wants of our city.
The writer, a Democrat, lives in Derby.
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