Presenting Sponsor Liberty Bank President and CEO David Glidden to Serve as Honorary Chair of September 29 Event at Tunxis Country Club


PLEASE NOTE: The Date of this event has been rescheduled to October 18

New Britain, Conn., August 11, 2023 – A pair of highly respected local military veterans – one a U.S. Army vet known for his community leadership, another a U.S. Marine Corps Vietnam vet and Purple Heart recipient who passed in January – will each be honored with DAV Hardware City Chapter 8’s inaugural Angelo Tomasso, Sr. and Angelo Tomasso, Jr. Veteran of Distinction Award at the Golden Kielbasa Veterans Open on September 29 at Tunxis Country Club.

2023 Tomasso Honorees Tom Higgins, left, and Armen Bayram, right

In more tournament news, President and CEO David Glidden of Presenting Sponsor Liberty Bank will serve as the event’s Honorary Chair.

The 2023 Tomasso Award honorees are Army veteran Tom Higgins and the late Armen Bayram, Marine Corps veteran. Tournament Founder and Director Dennis Buden said the two 2023 honorees are highly deserving of the honor.

“These two special individuals are and were well liked and greatly admired by the community, veterans, friends and family near and far. We could not have chosen two more appropriate recipients of the first-ever Tomasso Award,” said Buden. “Both Mr. Higgins and Mr. Bayram now join the ranks of the many distinguished vets who have been honored over the years at this special event.”

DAV Chapter 8 established The Tomasso Award this year to annually honor, at the Golden Kielbasa Veterans Open, a Central Connecticut veteran or veterans who has/have made a meaningful impact and inspired others through exemplary military service and/or community leadership. The award is being created in the 100th anniversary year of the Tomasso family’s service to the Greater New Britain community and beyond.

2023 Honorary Chair David Glidden of Liberty Bank

Italian immigrant Angelo Tomasso, Sr., served proudly in World War I prior to establishing The Tomasso Company 100 years ago in 1923. His son, Angelo, Jr., served in World War II, earning a Purple Heart for wounds sustained in the Philippines before coming home and eventually taking over the legendary company following his father’s unexpected passing in 1952. Tomasso, Jr., passed away at age 90 in 2015.

Higgins, 77, grew up in New Britain, graduating from St. Thomas Aquinas High School in 1964. The son of a World War II Army Air Corps medical officer, Staff Sergeant Higgins served active duty in the U.S. Army from 1965-1969, his principal assignment being in Germany training in counterinsurgency with the 10th Special Forces Group. He later served stateside in the Army Reserve through 1977. An accomplished computer technology and electronic equipment sales and management executive who worked for companies including Sperry UNIVAC, Intel and Sun Microsystems, Higgins has spent the vast majority of his post-military life serving his community and fellow veterans; he holds or has held over the years leadership positions with DAV Hardware City Chapter 8, the New Britain Veterans Council and Elks Lodge 957, New Britain. Higgins was the driving force behind the New Britain community’s Armistice@100 series of events in 2018 commemorating the 100th Anniversary of the end of World War I, and he has played a major role in the success of DAV Hardware City Chapter 8’s Wreaths Across America program – including managing and coordinating the Wreaths Across America National Convoy visit to New Britain last December.

Bayram, who died in January of this year at age 77, was born and raised in New Britain and graduated from Pulaski High School in 1964. A U.S. Marine Corps Sergeant, Bayram served 14 months in Vietnam and was awarded two Purple Hearts for his valor. He was a member of the Marine Corps League Commanders Club for Disabled Veterans. And avid and accomplished golfer – including club champion at Tunxis in 1972 – Bayram spent decades in the food industry, including working at the family business, The Epicure Market in Farmington, and operating Bayram’s Restaurant at Stanley Golf Course. Bayram spent his retirement years making hundreds of friends as a starter at Timberlin Golf Course in Berlin, working alongside his son, Timberlin Head Professional Marc Bayram.

Glidden was named President and CEO of Liberty Bank, based in Middletown, in March 2019 and is also President of the Liberty Bank Foundation. Established in 1825 and with more than $7 billion in assets today, Liberty Bank is the oldest and largest independent mutual bank in the country. Liberty has been named a Hartford Courant Top Workplace since 2012 and was recently named Best-in-State Bank in Connecticut by Forbes for the second time in three years. Dedicated to its Be Community Kind promise, Liberty Bank has been Presenting Sponsor of the Golden Kielbasa Veterans Open since 2021.

Upwards of 200 golfers are expected to take part in the 2023 “GK” which benefits DAV Chapter 8, House of Heroes Connecticut and other Connecticut veterans causes. Golf registration is $175, which includes range, greens fees/cart, premium gift bag, lunch and beverages, prizes and post-golf dinner, silent auction and raffle. Shotgun start is 11 a.m. Dinner-only registration is available for $75. A variety of sponsorships, ranging from $125 for a tee sign to $5,000 for a Diamond Sponsorship, are available.

For further information, to register online or purchase a sponsorship, visit or contact Tournament Director Dennis Buden at or 860-558-0514.


Media Contact: Dennis Buden, DAV Hardware City Chapter 8 (860) 558-0514