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Westchester County Good Things Happening, 4.13.2015

By Westfair Online | Original Article

The Children’s Home of Poughkeepsie benefit concert
The Children’s Home of Poughkeepsie recently hosted its third annual “Open Your Heart Cocktail Concert” at the Poughkeepsie Grand Hotel. Nearly 190 guests enjoyed a musical performance featuring vocalist and Hudson Valley native Mark Raisch.
This year’s event was co-chaired by board members Ellen Staino and Suzi Stoller. Rose & Kiernan Inc. was the event sponsor, Radio Woodstock 100.1 WDST was the media sponsor, and other sponsors included Dutchess Tekcon Industries Inc., IBM Corp., Jackson Lewis PC, JSA Financial Group, Marshall & Sterling Inc., McCabe & Mack LLP, Omnicare of Chestnut Ridge, Cindy Poggiogalle, Rhinebeck Bank, Rondout Savings Bank, Ulster Savings Bank and Williams Lumber & Home Centers.
VNS to honor two at gala
Two leaders in the health care community will be honored by Visiting Nurse Services in Westchester (VNSW) at its 17th annual Spring Benefit Gala on May 12, at the Willow Ridge Country Club in Harrison. The event this year will recognize health care innovator and visionary Frank A. Corvino, chairman of the Greenwich Hospital Foundation, and Sumir Sahgal, a champion of leveraging health care information technologies to enhance care for chronically ill homebound patients.
“This year’s honorees exemplify the collaboration across the spectrum of health care organizations that is necessary to improve health care for all in our region,” said Timothy P. Leddy, VNSW interim president. “Both Frank Corvino and Dr. Sumir Sahgal and their respective organizations are valued partners of VNSW. It is our privilege to express our heartfelt thanks to them for helping us fulfill our mission of providing the highest level of care to patients, their families and caregivers in the comfort of their own homes.”
Proceeds from VNSW’s gala will support a wide range of programs for residents of Westchester, the Bronx, Dutchess, Putnam and Rockland counties. “Health care today is vastly different than it was 15 or 20 years ago,” said Leddy. “With fewer and shorter hospital stays for many patients, we are experiencing a greater need for home health care throughout our entire service area.”
The gala is co-chaired by Mahopac resident Debra Swee, communications consultant and VNSW board member, and Michael Wilson, co-owner, Wilson & Son Jewelers of Scarsdale and Mount Kisco. For more information, contact Joyce Infante, director of development, at or 914-682-1480, ext. 649.
Central Hudson program promotes people helping people
“We’ve made a pledge: Our People Helping People initiative will deliver sufficient support to provide 55,000 meals to local families through the Food Bank of the Hudson Valley when 55,000 of our customers enroll in our convenient electronic payment program,” said James P. Laurito, president of Central Hudson, who noted that fewer than 10,000 signups remain to meet the target.
“The Food Bank of the Hudson Valley relies heavily on the generosity of businesses and individuals in the community to help us feed our hungry neighbors,” said Mark Quandt, director of the Food Bank. “Central Hudson has been a great supporter for many years and this new initiative will enable us to expand our efforts even further to reach more people in need.”
The Food Bank of the Hudson Valley supplies more than 400 food pantries, soup kitchens, shelters and other feeding programs, largely through donations by the food industry, as well as from individuals and organizations. In 2014, the nonprofit agency provided 12 million pounds of food throughout six Hudson Valley counties.
ArtsWestchester gift shop reopens
The Shop at ArtsWestchester in White Plains has moved to the front of the gallery with a revamped look. It showcases artists from throughout the Hudson Valley, including handmade products from the Hudson Valley Etsy Team.
Shoppers can expect to see a variety of new items by more than 13 artists, including whimsical hand-drawn stationary, handcrafted sterling silver and gemstone jewelry, luxurious knit fashions and more. An extension of ArtsWestchester’s exhibition space at 31 Mamaroneck Ave. in White Plains, the shop is opened during gallery hours, Tuesdays through Saturdays from noon to 5 p.m.
Gallery Director Kathleen Reckling said, “Just as our gallery highlights the talented and provocative artists working in and around Westchester, The Shop at ArtsWestchester is a destination for upscale yet affordable locally produced products. Each purchase supports local cottage industry businesses and ArtsWestchester.”
Upcoming trunk shows include:
April 18, noon to 4 p.m.: Cindy LaColla — greeting cards and prints with whimsical hand-drawn, hand-lettered watercolor and digital illustrations.
April 25, noon to 4 p.m.: Susan DiGilio — nature-inspired note cards and prints of original pen, ink and watercolor paintings.
May 2, noon to 4 p.m.: Elena Rosenberg — luxurious knit fashion accessories and textile jewelry in fine cottons and silks
For more information, visit or call 914-428-4220.
CNR professor receives award
Patricia St. John, professor of art therapy and art education at The College of New Rochelle Graduate School, has received the Honorary Life Member award from the New York Art Therapy Association. It is the highest award given by the association to a person who has been an inspiration to the association and its membership.
“It is truly wonderful to have the chance to practice art therapy, have the chance to help people and see the discipline grow. I’m grateful to have the opportunity to educate students who are using art therapy techniques to help others and expand the reach of the practice,” said St. John who has taught at CNR since 1986.
As a professor and chairperson of the Graduate School Division of Professional and Fine Arts, chairperson of the American Art therapy Association Education Committee (AATA), and co-coordinator of its Task Force for the Revision of Art Therapy Master’s Programs Education Standards, St. John has played an important part in the education of art therapy majors at the college and beyond. Her work includes extensive research and practice contributions as well as service in multiple high-level professional art therapy association positions.
Food Bank appoints exec
Naomi Giges Downey, a fundraiser who served as senior director of City Harvest in New York City, has been named vice president, fund development of the Food Bank for Westchester.
In her new role, Downey will work to develop systems, define job functions and put in place the best structure for the fund development department.
“Naomi comes to us with over 10 years of fund-development experience,” said Ellen Lynch, president and CEO of the Food Bank for Westchester. “As a senior director at City Harvest, she managed a staff of six and increased the special events fundraising program from $2 million a few years ago to a projected $5 million this year. She increased corporate sponsorships and helped strengthen their major donor base. I am very excited that she will bring that experience and expertise to the Food Bank.”
A White Plains resident, Downey joined City Harvest in 2006 and served in the senior director role for the past two years. Previously, she worked with the City Parks Foundation, an organization that provides arts, sporting and other activities in New York City parks. Earlier, she worked for the Jewish Community Center in Manhattan and at Carnegie Hall, where she directed a neighborhood concert series.
Keeping Rockland beautiful
Rockland County Legislator Aney Paul and a volunteer crew participated in the Great American Cleanup, a national effort that is sponsored locally by Keep Rockland Beautiful.
In 2014, Paul adopted the two-mile stretch of County Route 35A from New Clarkstown Road to Route 59, Spring Valley through the county Highway Department’s Adopt-a-Road Program. Paul organized four cleanup efforts in 2014 that were well attended by volunteers to rid the busy roadway of debris.
Korean War veterans on honor flight
Hudson Valley Honor Flight’s seventh flight to Washington, D.C., on April 11 was the first trip with a large number of Korean War veterans.
Previously, top priority has been given to those of the Greatest Generation, that of World War II and terminally ill veterans from other wars. This is the first flight where so many Korean War veterans were honored and made a special trip to visit the Korean War Memorial.
The flight carried 83 veterans (24 of whom are Korean War veterans) and 104 volunteers. The itinerary consisted of visiting the World War II Memorial, the Korean War Memorial, Arlington National Cemetery, Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and the Iwo Jima Memorial, before the group returned home from Reagan National Airport.
Phelps lab again receives accreditation in vascular testing
The Cardiovascular Diagnostic Laboratory at Phelps Memorial Hospital Center in Sleepy Hollow has been granted another three-year term of accreditation in vascular testing in the areas of extracranial cerebrovascular testing, peripheral arterial testing, and peripheral venous testing by the Intersocietal Accreditation Commission (IAC), which grants accreditation only to those facilities that, after a thorough review by a panel of experts, are found to be providing quality patient care in compliance with national standards. Vascular testing accreditation is required in some states and regions by the Centers for Medicarea and Medicaid Services and by some private insurers.
Tim Wages, senior director of ancillary services at Phelps said, “The IAC accreditation is a nationally recognized validation of our practice in the diagnosis of vascular-related illnesses. It recognizes the commitment to excellence by our physicians and vascular staff.”
Lockard & Wechsler promotes two
Asieya Pine has been promoted to president of the direct marketing agency Lockard & Wechsler Direct in Irvington. Eddie Wilders has been promoted to senior vice president of research and analytics.
Pine joined the agency in 1999 and most recently held the position of executive vice president, managing director.
Wilders has been with the company for 13 years and previously served as vice president, director of research.
Pine will work with CEO and founder Dick Wechsler, as well as the executive team and assume responsibilities for daily operations, strategic planning, business development and client service.
Members of the executive team include Jane Fischbein, chief financial officer; Rene Munoz, executive vice president, director; Carolyn Sura, executive vice president, media director; and Ben Speight, executive vice president.
Wechsler said, “Agencies need to constantly retool, not just to stay current, but to redefine the cutting edge. Asieya has a brilliant combination of energy, drive and vision. She has earned the confidence and respect of our clients and staff. And perhaps, most importantly, she’s passionately committed to personal and professional principles that shape our culture. I am so excited to see where she takes us.”
“Eddie is the architect of our research and analytics group,” said Dick Wechsler, LWD founder and CEO. “Under his direction, his team has become an integral part of every client we serve and every new business opportunity we pursue.”
In the past 15 years, LWD billings have grown from $20 million to $450 million.
Information for these features has been submitted by the subjects or their delegates.


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