Hall of Fame Inductees

See our latest inductees listed below! Click on any inductee's name to learn more.

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Albert Cirillo (Community Service)

1920 – 2008

Born in Meriden in 1920, Cirillo is a 1938 graduate of Meriden High School. He later took evening courses in accounting and data processing. He worked for twenty-three years at American Cyanamid as its data processing manager. In the 1970s he was selected to install and manage the computer system for the City of Meriden. In the 1980s he was appointed to the city’s redevelopment agency.

Cirillo has a long association with the Kiwanis Club on the local, state and regional levels. He served as District Governor for the six New England States and on the Kiwanis International committees. During his tenure as President of the Kiwanis New England Foundation, he was instrumental in the founding of the first pediatric trauma institute at Boston's New England Medical Center. In 1987 Cirillo was named President of the area's American Cancer Society. For many years he coordinated the ACS’ efforts to provide transportation for cancer patients to and from their treatments. He received the American Cancer Society's Patient Support Hope Award. In 1972 he received a National Community Service Award from MRP. A long time volunteer in Meriden's own hospital, in 2001 he received the MidState Medical Center's Obelisk Award for his decades of service to the hospital. He has also served on the city’s Crime Stoppers civilian board and the Meriden Housing Authority, and was a former City alderman and councilman. He has served on the Board of Directors of the Connecticut Baptist Homes.

Elsa Hotchkiss Bradford (Business & Commerce)

1932 – 2012

Born in 1932, Mrs. Bradford was a native of Cheshire, Connecticut. She earned a Bachelor's degree in Art History at Vassar College. After graduation she served as guide, librarian and publicist at Hartford's art museum, the Wadsworth Atheneum. In 1954 she married Samuel Bradford of Meriden, whose family owned Connecticut Electric Equipment Company, an electrical distribution firm founded in 1898. When her husband died in 1975, Mrs. Bradford changed careers from art to business and became the CEO of the company. In 1975 CEEC opened a branch in Waterbury, Connecticut. In 1985 Mrs. Bradford moved CEEC's headquarters from Pratt Street to its newly built facility on Pondview Drive (off Research Parkway). Years later, in 1998, the company opened its third location in Guilford, Connecticut.

Mrs. Bradford has also been very involved in community service, having been the first female President of both The Greater Meriden Chamber of Commerce and the Meriden Boys Club. She was a director of Connecticut Business and Industry Association (1986-1989) where she also chaired the Small Business Advisory Council. She has also lobbied for business interest at the State Capitol. In 1988 her achievements as a businesswoman were highlighted when she was named Connecticut’s Small Business Person of the Year. Mrs. Bradford is a former director and planning committee member of Veterans Memorial Medical Center (now Midstate Medical Center). She also served on the boards of the Meriden YMGA, Meriden Economic Development Corporation, Connecticut Rehabilitation Center and The Meriden and Wallingford United Way. She was a Cub Scout Leader, a Brownie Leader, Associate Director of Connecticut Bank and Trust Company, President of Medway Business Park Association and the American Silver Museum. Currently she was a member of the American Association of University Women, and the Meriden Foundation.

I. Willard Abrahams, M.D. (Science/Medicine)

1931 –

Born in New York in 1931, Abrahams graduated from Kenyon College, Gambier, Ohio in 1952, and earned his medical degree from New York University School of Medicine in 1957. He then interned at The Johns Hopkins Hospital in Internal Medicine, and did his residency in Ophthalmology at the Wilmer Institute of the Johns Hopkins Hospital. From 1961-1963, he served in the United States Navy Medical Corps as a Lt. Commander and Staff Ophthalmologist at the United States Naval Hospital, Chelsea, Massachusetts. Upon completion of military service, he and his family moved to Meriden where he opened his ophthalmology practice, and was appointed to the Yale Medical School faculty. He has continued to serve on the faculty of the Medical School where he is now a full Clinical Professor and a member of the Board of Permanent Officers. He also attended the Yale School of Epidemiology and Public Health.

Dr. Abrahams was an active member of both the World War II Veterans Memorial Hospital and the Meriden Wallingford Hospital, and was Chief of Staff of the World War II Veterans Memorial Hospital from 1973-1977. In 1988 he retired from his local practice but continues to work at Yale teaching, mentoring physicians in residency, and consulting on patients with exceptionally difficult eye disease. He is director of the Uveitis Service in the Department of Ophthalmology at Yale, and is internationally recognized as an expert in this complex disease. Both a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons and the American Academy of Ophthalmology, he is also a member of many societies and an elected member of the Oxford (England) Ophthalmological Congress.

Dr. Abrahams has spent a good part of his career helping people and teaching in poor and remote areas of the world including Africa and Afghanistan. His second visit to Afghanistan was to study the incidence of general medical and eye disease in remote parts of the country for the first time, and it resulted in a subsequent book which he co-authored. He has also served as Visiting Professor at medical schools in Puerto Rico, Brazil, and Peru. In China, for his continued services as Visiting Professor at Hunan Medical University, he was awarded an Honorary Professorship of Ophthalmology. Abrahams was also Visiting Professor at Chungking and Beijing. He is director of the Yale Eye Program at the Princess Margaret Hospital in Nassau, Bahamas, and is Consultant to the Bahamas Ministry of Health. He is the author and co-author of 30 scientific papers dealing with both basic Immunology and Clinical Medicine. He holds an Honorary Doctor of Science degree from his alma mater Kenyon University for his outstanding public works and scholarship. Abrahams continues to reside in Meriden with his wife Janet.