Elba Cruz Schulman, 78, of Bloomfield, beloved wife of Sydney T. Schulman, lifelong advocate for those in need and the underprivileged passed away Saturday, December 19, 2020. Born and raised in Arecibo, Puerto Rico, daughter of the late Jose and Basilisa (Martinez) Gonzalez and came to New York City when she was eleven years old. She was educated in the New York school system and attended the University of Massachusetts and graduated New Hampshire College, now Southern New Hampshire University with a bachelor's degree in Human Services. She also attended the University of Connecticut School of Social Work with credits toward a master's in social work. Elba was a most extraordinary Woman to come along in a lifetime. She cared so much for her family, the community, and anyone in need. She led a full life of service to the community, including employment as a drug counselor, family and youth Counselor and Therapist, Coordinator for Northern Connecticut for the Cuban Refugee Entrants Program, Community Educator and, for the last thirty (30) plus years, as a Medical Social Worker for the City of Hartford, where she started first in a new program 30 years ago as a supervisor in the Maternity Infant Outreach Program. She was the Coordinator for the Hartford Mayor's Passport to Success Program, aiming to provide all youth in the City of Hartford with the opportunity to succeed in life. She also coordinated and raised the funds for the annual Festival of Lights program in Hartford where 1000 children receive Christmas and holiday toys. However, that does not tell the full story about Elba Schulman. She has served on the Boards of Directors of numerous community organizations, including My Sisters Place, the United Way Allocation Committee and Y-US, Inc. She has served as President of the Advisory Board of the Institute for The Hispanic Family, President and now member of the Capital Region Board of Directors of Catholic Family Services/Catholic Charities and Charter Member and President of the Hartford Multinational Lions Club. She has served on the Lions District 23B Cabinet in various capacities over the years and has served as organizer and Guiding Lion of several area Lions Clubs, including the Greater Hartford West Indian Lions Club and the Hartford Hispanic Seniors Lions Club. She currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Hispanic Health Council, Inc. and Jewish Family Services, Inc. Elba has served as a member of her parish council at Sacred Heart Church in Bloomfield and serves further as a Commissioner of the Bloomfield Housing Authority. Elba has received a number of awards and recognitions, including the 1999 Lewis Fox Middle School Outstanding Woman of The Year Award, the Maria Sanchez Award for Outstanding Community Service and a University of Connecticut Certificate of Appreciation for a lifetime of outstanding commitment and dedication to help issues effecting women and children and being a role model for all citizens. Elba is married to Attorney Sydney T. Schulman, the former Mayor of Bloomfield and she is involved in many organizations and efforts in Bloomfield, such as the Association for Bloomfield's Children, School Readiness Council and others. Beside her beloved husband Sydney, she leaves her seven children Jesse Cruz, David Cruz, Julia Miller and her husband Michael, Daniel Cruz and his partner Tammy Cascagne, David Schulman, and his wife Natasha, Robert Schulman, and his wife Stacy, and Marc Schulman and his wife Marnie; thirteen grandchildren: Christian, Adrianna, Matthew, Nicholas, Megan, Lexi, Ben, Tyler, Caitlyn, Michaela, Madison, Karah, and Brenton; and two great grandchildren Aurora and Bella. She is also survived by two sisters, Daisy Gonzalez and Milca Fortier. She was pre-deceased by her sister Lydia O'Sullivan Gillooly. Her family was the light of her life. A Private Mass of Christian Burial was held for her family at Sacred Heart Church, Bloomfield. Burial was in Cedar Hill Cemetery, Hartford. Contributions in her memory may be made to either Hartford Larrabee Fund Association, P.O. Box 370 585, West Hartford, CT 06117 [email protected]
or Hartford Multinational Lions Club,Attn: President Lillian Ruiz, 48 Lynwood Drive, Bloomfield, CT 06002 or Gardner's House (Breast Cancer Recovery), Attn: Maggie Gardner, 1229 Albany Avenue, Hartford, CT 06112, Gardnershouse.org
( to donate through the website). Those wishing to view her Mass of Christian Burial may use the following link https://client.tribucast.com/tcid/24066388
. Elba's family will announce a public gathering this summer to celebrate Elba's life when it is safe to gather. The Carmon Funeral Home of Windsor is caring for the arrangements. For condolences, please visit www.carmonfuneralhome.com
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Published by Hartford Courant on Dec. 24, 2020.