After two and a half years of service, Benton House's most senior resident has moved out, and has completely moved on with his life, to an apartment three whole blocks away. Alex Matz has since been spotted on the premises - to join us for Thanksgiving, to help change a light bulb, and because he “Forgot [his] toothpaste.” All jokes aside, he plans to remain as involved with the Benton House as possible, which has relived some of the sadness the other residents feel in his parting.
During Alex's tenure here, he has been many things: A food pantry coordinator, the head of the facilities committee, and a general handyman. He has taken the initiative in welcoming and guiding new residents, painted many a wall and driven innumerable miles for Benton House in his car and in a U-Haul.
But Alex's contributions go far beyond the difficult everyday tasks our programs and buildings demand of its residents. To live and work at the Benton House is an interpersonal affair that extends beyond the spaces that the residents share. One has to interact with their roommates both on a professional and deeply personal level, and then one also has to interact with our friends, our partners, and our neighbors.
To say he is well-liked in all of these arenas is perhaps an understatement. It is Benton House's responsibility and desire to be as connected to Bridgeport as possible, not only through direct service but also socially. He has connected us to new partners and allies through his work at the local, independent Jackalope Cafe, and through the many friendships he has forged here since his arrival from West Virginia. Additionally, he has always worked hard to be kind, fair, and communicative with his coworkers. He has provided them with many tasty “Organic mush” dishes, and regularly warns them about the potentially cancerous nature of common household objects.
It is because of all this and more that Alex Matz is moving out of the Benton House with a swell of support and affection. Benton House is forever grateful for the time he has dedicated and we all wish him nothing but the very best in his future endeavors.