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September 15,



Presented by:



The Amber Room Colonnade

1 Stacey Rd.

Danbury, CT 06811



05:30 pm


The New American Dream Foundation (TNADF) announces that for its 9th Annual American Dream Awards, on Friday, September 15, at the Amber Room Colonnade in Danbury, U.S. Secretary of Education Dr. Miguel Cardona, the nation's education leader, will provide a keynote address and accept a lifetime achievement award as part of Gala's program. 


"We are honored to present Secretary Cardona with a lifetime achievement award," Celia Palmares, The New American Dream Foundation president and founder, said. "As our nation's first bilingual education secretary, who ardently supports our nation's English learners, Secretary Cardona is a beacon of inspiration for many, especially in our diverse community."


When Secretary Cardona's parents moved from Puerto Rico to Meriden, CT, where he was born, his father worked as a city police officer, and his family lived in public housing. They spoke Spanish at home. When he began school, he was an ESL student or English learner, the term educators use today.


Before being sworn in as the 12th Secretary of Education, Cardona, a first-generation college graduate, was the Commissioner of Education in Connecticut, where he spearheaded efforts to safely reopen the state's schools in the aftermath of COVID-19.


The event's theme is "The Power of Education – The Power of Community," presented by Union Savings Bank. It will highlight the contributions of community organizations and individuals in education and social services provided to immigrants and their descendants and bestow three American Dream Award Scholarships of $3,000 to immigrants and children of immigrants who have faced many challenges along their journey to achieve their American dreams. 


The New American Dream Foundation 2023 Community Hero Award honorees are:

The Lebanon-American Club of Danbury

Daily Bread Food Pantry 


The 2023 American Dream Award Scholarship recipients are: 

Elvia Fajardo, a Danbury High School graduate, is attending the University of Hartford as a Nursing major this fall. "I am a proud child of immigrant parents who both migrated from Ecuador. My parent's journey to the U.S. was indescribable. My American dream is to honor my parents," Fajardo said. 

Julia Clara Ferreira, a Danbury High School graduate, is attending the University of New Haven as a Forensic Science major this fall. "I am a very proud daughter of Brazilian immigrants. I am also the youngest child of two and will be the first person in the family to graduate high school and continue on with my education," Ferreira said. 

Daniel Espin is a Computer Science major at Western Connecticut State University and is the son of Ecuadorian immigrants. "As an immigrant, I have faced countless challenges and learned valuable lessons. The most important lesson is the language barrier I faced and how I managed to overcome it by being persistent and never giving up," Espin shared. 


Ticket proceeds will support The New American Dream Foundation programs and Mission Health Day - a day of free health screenings and other community services for the uninsured and the income challenged, hosted by Nuvance Health and TNADF.


TNADF is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization established in 2016 by the Bacelar-Palmares Family. It serves as the philanthropic branch of the Tribuna Newspaper, a trilingual publication founded by the family in 1999. The TNADF's mission is to celebrate, support, and inspire immigrants of all generations, committed to providing opportunities that enhance access to education, health, and civic engagement.


Tribuna Newspaper is a multilingual publication in English, Portuguese and Spanish, with the mission to build bridges and join cultures, by providing its readers with content that connects them with the communities where they live.


In the process of fulfilling that mission, Tribuna has come across compelling stories of immigrants, like its founder and publisher, Celia Bacelar Palmares, who migrated to the U.S from Brazil over twenty years ago and faced many challenges along her journey to achieve her American Dream.


On April 19, 2014, in celebration of its 15th Anniversary, Tribuna created the American Dream Awards Gala, an annual awards ceremony designed to recognize members

of the community who share in Tribuna’s founder’s story.


In 2016, the event's growth over the years sparked the creation of The New American Dream Foundation, Inc. a 501(c)(3).


To date, over $150,000 have been given in scholarships, awards and donations to the community through the event.


"The gala became an opportunity for all of us to
come together and go beyond highlighting the
cultural contributions of the immigrant community, and sincerely celebrate their determination in the pursuit of their American Dream above all else. The foundation is vehicle to create meaningful change for generations
of immigrants to come."
- Celia Bacelar Palmares


The success of this event will depend on the generosity of our community partners. Different sponsorship levels explained in detail below will help cover all the additional costs of the event such as awards, scholarships, and entertainment.


 For more information on these sponsorship opportunities call (203) 770-3708 

or via email 


Past Events


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The New American Dream Foundation

32  Farview Ave. - Danbury, CT 06810

Tel: 203.730.0457 

Fax: 203.778.8974

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