Connecticut Forum co-founder and CEO Doris Sugarman will step aside from her day-to-day responsibilities on June 30, 2021 as part of a planned leadership transition. Ruth Cullen, longtime CT Forum staff member and leader has been named The Forum’s incoming executive director, effective July 1, 2021.

Doris Sugarman has been widely recognized for her pioneering work at The Connecticut Forum since co-founding it with her husband, Richard, in 1992. She has played a central role in all aspects of the organization and has become a recognized voice and leader in our community.

Sugarman has been instrumental in building a strong and nimble organization that has become a cultural institution in Hartford, with an extraordinary history of high-profile panel discussions at The Bushnell, a CT YOUTH Forum program serving high school students, and community outreach and engagement activities that have encouraged meaningful dialogue and connection among diverse people and organizations throughout Greater Hartford and beyond.

“Planned, thoughtful transitions are what great organizations do,” said Sugarman. “And for me and the organization, the time is right. We have strong, seasoned leadership, a cohesive and talented team, and an incredible board of directors who are ready to take the organization to the next level.”

Sugarman, staff, and board are committed to a smooth and successful transition over the coming months. “The Forum welcomes change and all the exciting opportunities that come with change,” Sugarman added. “I can’t wait to see what comes next.”

Ruth Cullen has been an integral member of The Connecticut Forum staff since 2007, serving as its director of advancement and communications and playing an important leadership role in Forum strategy, marketing, fundraising, and operations. Ruth is a champion of The Forum’s mission of connecting people and ideas, encouraging dialogue and understanding, and contributing to an informed and engaged community.

“The Connecticut Forum is a small organization that has always thought BIG,” said Cullen. “I look forward to continuing this tradition of big thinking and building on The Forum’s legacy and impact, together with my amazing Forum colleagues, our board of directors, and our loyal Forum family of supporters.”

The CT Forum will celebrate its 30th anniversary year in 2022, an important milestone in which the organization will celebrate its past and look ahead to its future.

“This is an exciting time of growth and innovation for The Forum,” said Steve Blau, vice president of Human Resources at Travelers and chairman of The CT Forum Board of Directors. “We thank Doris for all she has done for The CT Forum and our community. The Board has full confidence in Ruth’s leadership to build on the foundation Doris has established and lead The Forum into its next chapter.”