President-Elect Cory MacKay introduced Connie Carson, a great leader in our community.   Connie Carson has been a realtor in the Quinte area for over 43 years. In that time she has been an active part of many great organizations including; Bay Of Quinte Yacht Club, The Enrichment Centre For Mental Health, Three Oaks, Quinte Home Builders , 100 Women Who Care , Walk A Mile In Her Shoes, Children's Safety Village,Community Champion recipient and BGH Community Hero. She currently serves on The Belleville Heritage Committee and is a passionate advocate for sharing what she loves most about this beautiful city. Connie is the founder and moderator of the 12,000+ member facebook group "Sharing Belleville Memories" where people share their own stories and read her articles on the topic. Her latest book "Memories of Belleville" explores a few of the dozens of stories Connie has written on downtown Belleville.
In January of 2020, Connie had a coffee with a friend who suggested she write a blog about downtown Belleville.  A short month later, the world changed with COVID and Connie was facing some personal health challenges as well.  As she began to heal, she spent time writing stories of growing up in Belleville.  By November of that same year, Connie had about 15 stories written and came up with the idea of starting a Facebook group to share some good memories with others. Currently there are over 12,300 members from all over the country, connecting with friends, family and school mates, sharing memories and reminiscing.  By this time she had 25 stories written and decided to hire a local publisher and publish her own book just before Christmas 2021.  The first print was 250 copies, but they have sold out numerous times and are now on their 4th printing.  Connie's stories are about hard working people during the depression years, the 1936 flood in Belleville just before WWII.  Connie's mom worked with many folk in Belleville, including Louis Tsichas at the Cozy Grill and the Diana Grill.  There were plenty of young families and lots going on in the City.  Her mentors were Joe Burke, Maurice Rollins and Max Haggarty and they left a mark on her young life.  Connie gave credit to the firemen who worked at the Fire Hall on Moira Street, who kept an eye on her and her siblings while her mom, a single mom, was still at work.  They left quite an impression on her.
Past President Doug Peterson formally thanked Connie for her presentation and congratulated her on the success of her projects.  It is refreshing how Connie turned a negative into something positive and encouraged so many people.  She has unique energy and enthusiasm and the heart of her stories are familiar to everyone.