Stamford resident leads Fairfield County nonprofit

Baron -Woman standing tall

Stamford resident leads Fairfield County nonprofit
Elizabeth Kim – Published 6:44 pm, Saturday, September 27, 2014

Juanita James

Juanita James – Click photo to enlarge

Juanita James, CEO of the Fairfield County’s Community Foundation, poses for a photo in her Stamford, Conn., home.

STAMFORD — Growing up in Brooklyn in the 1960s, Juanita James had high expectations even when others around her did not.

Although she was convinced she had the highest grades and SAT scores of her class, her guidance counselor at her all-girls Catholic high school tried to discourage her from applying to Ivy League colleges, instead pushing City College as an option.

“I was really annoyed at her,” she recalled recently, adding that in hindsight she thought perhaps the administrator might have simply been trying to shield her from disappointment.

On the surface, the odds seemed stacked against James, a black teenager raised by a single mom who worked as a seamstress.

Her mother emigrated from British Guiana — now Guyana — without her husband so that her only child could have better opportunities.

And so when the school announced on its public address system that James had been accepted to Princeton, the entire class cheered.

Read more ..​

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