The Connecticut Marine Model Society (CMMS) was founded in 1963. The club is one of the five Northeast Ship Modeling clubs that hold an annual, joint clubs Conference in New London, Connecticut. The club’s current President is Dave Dinan who joined the CMMS in 1976. In late 2020, our former President who had joined the club in 1971 when he was just twenty-one, passed away: Richard “Duff” Griffith. Griffith served for two (2), four-year terms as President. Two of the club’s founding members are still active in 2020: Ed Petrucci and Dick DeWick.
Nearly every member is an active ship modeler, whether scratch or kit builder. Many members of the club have also received national and local awards for their superb models. Long time member, Justin Camarata, is an accomplished, professional modelmaker and published author of “Waterline Dioramas” a Seawatch Publications book; member Ron Neilson is a published author on various maritime subjects with articles in the Nautical Research Guild’s quarterly NRG Journal. Bill Strachan with Al Saubermann have contributed designs to the NRG’s Plans & Projects member’s Resources. Member Jack Dillon, 89, remains an active sailor as well as respected model maker; Jack built his own Atlantic-ready sail-boat in recent years and made a solo trip from the East Coast to the Bahamas.
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The CMMS has met continuously and monthly in New & West Haven, Connecticut since its founding in 1963 and many members are continuing to “Zoom” meet on their computers until in-person meetings can return safely. In 2014, the club established the yearly Jim Wiser Award for outstanding Craftsmanship & Artistry in Model Shipbuilding. Jim Wiser, now deceased, was a prolific member of the CMMS and was widely recognized for his outstanding and much-praised, museum-quality models.