Cliff Nelson called a 'treasure' to the East Windsor community
By Calla Vassilopoulos - Staff Writer
East Windsor - posted Fri., Aug. 2, 2013
Being born and raised in East Windsor, Cliff Nelson has always been interested in helping the community and the people, he said. Whether the town needs a committee chairman, new office furniture, event sponsors, or other changes in the community, Nelson is always there, according to Board of Finance Chairman Jason Bowsza.
“It is amazing what you can accomplish when you don't care who gets the credit, and Cliff lives and breathes that,” said Bowsza. “That's just what he does. He is forever the go-to guy in a pinch, and it's because everybody knows he will be there for you if you need him.”
As part of the emergency management team, Nelson made sure there was an operation center for the community to stay warm during the October 2011 snowstorm. Bowsza also said Nelson was able to secure a generator at minimal or no cost to the town.
In addition to emergency management, Nelson has donated desks and other furniture to the schools, a conference table for the town hall, and work stations for the police department. Whenever his friends who own different office furniture companies need to clean out their warehouses, he finds out what the town needs and donates the furniture.
“He is absolutely a treasure to the community, and we are better off for having him and his wife, who is on the Board of Selectman,” said Bowsza. “They provide a lot to the community without the recognition that is rightfully due to them.”
Nelson and Bowsza met approximately seven years ago, when Bowsza joined the Democratic Town Committee, which Nelson chaired at the time. As they worked together on the committee, Nelson became a mentor to Bowsza, guiding him on local politics and helping him understand what needed to be done. Later, when Nelson decided to move on from the committee, Bowsza campaigned to become chairman, which he won. According to Bowsza, Nelson was instrumental in his decision to run.
Aside from being the former Zoning Board of Appeals chairman and chairman of the Police Commission, Nelson is currently the Building Committee chairman and Zoning Enforcement hearing officer. As the owner of Cliff Nelson Motorsports, he has sponsored events such as the Panther Plunge, which raises money for needy families to buy fuel to stay warm in the winter.
“They have all been great years, and hopefully I will have many more years to serve and be around,” said Nelson. “I just love it; it's a great little town, with its rural character.”
Bowsza himself has written several letters of support to the Rotary Club stating why he believed Nelson should be recognized as Citizen of the Year, and for the last two years he has been one of the two finalists, according to Bowsza. “I just can't say enough good things about the guy - he just does for others,” he said.