Olga L. Babb
Pamela M. Junior
Mary Nolan, Linda Gallagher,
Carolyn Sanders James
East New York
Fields, whos a fraternal twin and lifelong resident of
Brooklyn, lives in East New York. In addition to holding
several community service posts, Ms. Fields works as an
employment specialist at Concord Family Services, a foster
care agency that serves the East New York and Bedford
Stuyvesant communities. Ms. Fields is convinced that it
takes a whole community to raise a child, and shes
dedicated herself to that proposition for much of her adult
takes a proactive, no-nonsense approach to the fifteen or
more students she prepares for job readiness at Concord
Family Services, where shes affectionately known as Big
Momma by her students and co-workers. Due to the depth of
her commitment to them, many of her students keep in touch
with her long after theyve aged-out of the program. Ms.
Fields fondly remembers one 16-year-old young woman whod
been referred to her by a residential treatment facility and
couldnt read, but tried to hide her deficiency by making
excuses. Taking charge of the situation as she typically
does, Ms. Fields sat the young woman down with
pre-kindergarten books and taught her to read. The young
woman ultimately gained sufficient proficiency to read a
speech aloud at a public ceremony.
firmly believes that community change must come from within.
She therefore actively serves her community by sitting on
the executive boards of Community Board 5, the 75th
Precinct Community Council, and Weed and Seed, a federal
Department of Justice initiative that seeks to improve
relationships between the police and various communities
while also reducing and preventing violent crime and drug
abuse. Ms. Fields also serves as chair of East New York
Kids. She believes her biggest impact in the East New York
community has been to empower people to have a voice,
since, as she puts it, a hushed mouth does not get fed.
Ms. Fields has had to meet her own share of
lifes challenges, such as raising her two children, who are
one year and four months apart in age, while also providing
financial support for them. With the help of her mother and
community, she was able to meet these challenges.
Seubert, affectionately known as Lori, was born and raised
in the Bay Ridge section of Brooklyn 89 years ago. Since her
young adulthood, she literally has spent a lifetime
enriching the lives of hundreds of her friends and neighbors
through her countless acts of generosity, compassion and
devoted thousands of hours of her time working as a
volunteer for various community organizations, including the
Zion Lutheran Church soup kitchen; the Dorcas Lutheran
Church quilting group; the Bay Ridge Center for Older
Adults; the Lutheran Medical Center Auxiliary; and the
Augustana Nursing Home.
past eight years, Lori has focused much of her energy on
caring for the elderly residents of the Augustana home,
which has become a passion for her. Her mission is to ensure
the comfort of the residents and the quality of their care.
While Lori is on duty at the home, everyone there the
staff as well as the residents are inspired by the warmth
of her presence and the vigilance of her support and
Lori suffered a broken hip and for a short period of time
became a resident of Augustana. True to form, while she was
there her focus remain fixed on the welfare of the homes
other residents and not on herself. Although she was there
to convalesce, her mission continued unabated as she brought
solace and encouragement to the other elderly and ailing
residents of Augustana.
recovery, Loris dedication to the well-being of Augustanas
residents has continued to endure to the benefit of all who
reside and work there.
82-year-old Olga L. Babb emigrated from Panama in 1957, she
was proud to make Brooklyn her home and has lived here ever
1970, Olga has been a member of the Unity Bethany Methodist
Church, where she serves as secretary of the churchs Board
of Trustees. She is also one of the churchs class leaders.
further demonstrates her dedication to Brooklyn by feeding
the hungry each and every week in her Crown Heights
neighborhood. In addition, she continually comes to the aid
of her elderly friends and co-members of the Plus Ultra
Club, where she does the accounting and has served as
secretary since 1968.
hasnt slowed down a bit during her 50 years of service to
Brooklyn. She continues to give of herself unselfishly to
friends and neighbors alike. Olga also finds the time to
help care for her grandchildren and great grandchildren.
Dowling was born and raised in the Crown Heights section of
Brooklyn and has been committed to its residents ever since.
Dowling works as a homeowner counselor for Pratt Area
Community Council, a not-for-profit group that, among other
things, preserves and develops safe and affordable housing
for community residents and promotes responsible community
economic development. As a homeowner counselor, Bonita
advises individual homeowners concerning loans and available
grants, repairs, refinancing, foreclosure intervention, and
clearing up tax arrears. She also conducts educational
workshops on a broad range of topics, including predatory
lending, which is an insidious and criminal practice that
threatens the homesteads of a growing number of Brooklyn
residents. Ms. Dowling is held in very high esteem by her
associates and clients alike for the depth of her commitment
to the communities she serves and her tireless efforts on
behalf of her clients, especially those who might have
fallen prey to predatory lending schemes.
Dowlings service to the residents of Brooklyn is an
outgrowth of her career in consumer finance. She started as
a credit counselor with TRW Credit Data, now Experian, where
she advised individuals with credit problems. She was
subsequently employed as a credit investigator/analyst by
JPMorganChase, where she worked for 25 years.
Ms. Dowling served as president of the PTA for a junior high
school in her neighborhood. She also served as president of
the Board of Directors of a 286-unit Brooklyn cooperative.
Yelverton, who is known throughout the Coney Island
community as Sister Audrey, has devoted herself to helping
others through service to her church, her community and her
than 20 years, Sister Audrey has served the larger Coney
Island community and the congregants of the Coney Island
Gospel Assembly by acting as the churchs general caretaker
in all matters large and small. If anything needs to be
done, no matter what time of the day or night, its
Sister Audrey to whom the needy turn. Among many other
services provided by the church, Sister Audrey oversees all
the funeral arrangements requested by members of the
community, while providing comfort, solace and compassion to
the families of the deceased. In addition, Sister Audrey
helps support the churchs other ministries, including an
onsite after-school center. She also acts as the churchs
liaison to the District Attorneys neighborhood office and
TRACK center, both of which are located on church property.
providing unflagging service to her church and community,
Sister Audrey, with the help of her late husband who passed
away last April, also managed to raise two daughters, one of
whom has sickle cell anemia but fortunately is doing well.
In addition, Sister Audrey and her late husband adopted
their grandson as a baby and provided him with a loving home
and sustenance. Hes now 15 years old, attends John Dewey
High School in Coney Island, and is doing very well.
Audreys devotion to her church, her neighbors and her
family have made her a well-loved figure in her community.
Rodriguez, who lives in the Coney Island section of Brooklyn
and is known throughout the community as Sister Nellie,
has dedicated herself to assisting others through serving
her church and the larger community of Coney Island.
several years, Sister Nellie has served as church secretary
and director of outreach for the Coney Island Gospel
Assembly. Among other responsibilities, Sister Nellie
oversees Operation Blessing and Food Drive, through which
food is distributed to needy recipients throughout the City
of New York. As the director of outreach for the church,
Sister Nellie organizes and coordinates all of the churchs
many community service projects. She also schedules the
churchs official calendar of events.
addition to her volunteer activities, Sister Nellie is a
devoted wife and mother to a loving son who hopes one day to
join the New York City Fire Department.
Naomi Klass Mauer
Klass Mauer is associate editor of The Jewish Press and
editor of the Family Issues section of the newspaper. She
is also a frequent contributor of articles to the paper.
from her work at The Jewish Press, Mrs. Mauer spends
countless hours helping abused women throughout Brooklyns
many communities. She also assists women who are denied a
religious Jewish divorce from their husbands.
Mauer is married to Dr. Ivan Mauer, and is a proud mother
and grandmother of a large family, who mostly reside in
Israel. Mrs. Mauer is also the daughter of the late Rabbi
Sholom Klass and of Mrs. Irene Klass, founders of The Jewish
Farinacci is a resident of the Kensington section of
Brooklyn and teacher extraordinaire at the renowned
Teachers Prep Secondary School in Brooklyn.
teaches senior AP English Literature and junior English
Regents Prep. She also acts as the schools senior advisor
and thus is responsible for organizing and executing the
schools senior trip, senior prom and senior graduation. In
addition, shes the schools very first basketball
Christinas commitment to the students of Teachers Prep
doesnt stop there. Last year, at her own expense, Christina
gave all the graduating seniors copies of Paulo Cohelo's
Warrior of the Light in the hope they would occasionally
read and be inspired by it as they ventured out into the
"real world." Earlier that same year, Christina, again at
her own expense, escorted Teachers Preps valedictorian to
Cornell University for the weekend so that the student could
visit the campus before deciding whether to attend college
there. To Christinas delight, the trip proved successful:
the student is now in her second semester at Cornell. As
this years senior advisor, Christina has also helped the
senior class fundraise for their prom and senior dues by
personally paying for the karaoke DJ they hired for their
fundraiser. And although Christina is compensated for a
portion of the time she spends coaching the schools
basketball cheerleaders, she donates additional time to make
sure everythings as good as it possibly could be because
she wants her girls to have fun and look good when they're
out on the court. Christina is also part of Teachers
Preps mentoring program. This year, shes officially
mentoring one student with whom she meets nearly weekly. In
addition, shes mentoring two other seniors unofficially
whom she sometimes feeds and advises at least once a week
and often multiple times a week.
addition to her activities at Teachers Prep, Christina
tries to remain involved in her church and volunteers at
different events sponsored by it. Shes served at a soup
kitchen and a Christmas dinner for the homeless, done Breast
Cancer walks and other assorted volunteer activities.
also regularly donates to various other charitable causes,
including the Amerasian Christian Academy, where she was a
missionary teacher almost four years ago. Finally, Christina
and a friend are trying to form a not-for-profit
organization that would enable students to develop academic
and leadership skills through social action and
Kevelier-Smith was born in Brooklyn and resides in the
Clinton Hill section of the borough. She was awarded her BA
and MA degrees in Education and was an elementary school
teacher in the New York City public school system for
several years. She also was a teacher at St. Pauls
Community School. She is now a community advocate for people
that are deaf or hard of hearing, assisting them to gain
full access to the services to which theyre entitled.
retired from the public school system, Dianne honed her
American Sign Language (ASL) skills at LaGuardia Community
College. In 2002, she graduated from the ASL-English
Interpretation program at the college and now works as an
educational interpreter at Middle College High School. Since
2001, Dianne has also been an adjunct instructor in the Deaf
Studies AA degree program at LaGuardia Community College.
served on the Board of the National Association of Black
Interpreters (NAOBI) and currently works with the New York
City Black Deaf Advocates (BDA). Shes also a member of the
Registry of Interpreters of the Deaf (RID) on both the
national and New York City Metro registers. As an avid
community activist, Dianne also served as one of the St.
Paul Community Baptist Churchs trainers for Undoing
another of her many careers, Dianne was the training captain
and coordinator for uniformed and civilian staff at the New
York City Department of Correction Academy. She later
retired from the department as an assistant deputy warden at
the Brooklyn House of Detention. Dianne also served as the
first and only female president of the New York City
Department of Correction Guardians.
emigrating from Costa Rica, Maritza Cunningham moved to
Brooklyn and did whatever she had to do to support her two
children and elderly mother. This included working three
jobs, but Maritza remained undaunted. She was determined to
do her best for those who depended on her.
determination to succeed and her fearlessness in the face of
challenge are qualities that enhance her effectiveness as a
community advocate in the East Flatbush neighborhood where
she resides. She volunteers for a multitude of community
organizations, including her local community board, churches
and political groups. She also serves as a translator for
her neighbors in her extended neighborhood because she
firmly believes that the information she learns will empower
them as well.
an inspiring role model for both her community and her two
children, who are also exceedingly community-minded.
East New York
one of the youngest of Brooklyns female role models,
26-year-old Veronica Rhodes has dedicated herself to
improving the lives of other young people whove grown up
the hard way by letting them know they have a choice in
their lives and leading by example.
Veronica works full time as a funeral director, takes care
of her nephew, has obtained two associates degrees and is
now working on her bachelors, Veronica still believes its
her duty to give back to her community. Since Veronica knows
she can relate to children labeled as being at risk, she
volunteers for programs that promise to help teenage girls
whove been victimized.
wants no credit for what shes doing with her life. She
believes because shes made it, giving back to others is her
Roxanne Jacqueline Persaud
Jacqueline Persaud was born in Guyana and emigrated to the
United States after graduating from high school. She holds
BS and MS degrees in Education and is in the process of
completing her MS degree in Information systems. She is
currently the registrar at St. Francis College in Brooklyn
addition to her many educational accomplishments, Roxanne is
an invaluable asset to her community. She is dedicated to
serving the residents of Canarsie in a variety of ways.
Shes vice president of the 69th Precinct Community Council;
secretary of Neighborhood Advisory Board 18; a member of
Community Board 18; secretary of the Brooklyn Canarsie Lions
Club; a certified member Community Emergency Response Team
18; and a member of the Thomas Jefferson Democratic Club.
devotion and interest in helping others stretches well
beyond the borders of Canarsie. Shes also the treasurer of
the Guyana North America Association for Social and Health
Services. In connection with this endeavor, shes organized
and traveled to Guyana with physicians whove conducted
workshops on current cancer treatments for Guyanese doctors,
other health care professionals, university students and
members of the public.
is an exemplary resident of her community.
Hodge is a 75-year-old resident of the Williamsburg section
of Brooklyn who emigrated from the Dominican Republic
several years ago after her husband died. She came to the
United States in search of a better life for herself and her
six children, whom she raised as a single parent. Shes now
the devoted caregiver for many of her grandchildren, as well
as the children of some other Williamsburg families by whom
shes been employed for many years.
has become a pillar of the Williamsburg community. She looks
after needy, at-risk children in her neighborhood, just as
she did when she lived in the Dominican Republic. She also
informs her neighbors about whats going on in their area
and helps them to access any services or relief they need.
She acts as a liaison between the landlord and tenants in
her building and also acts as a translator. Violeta also
volunteers for community campaigns and advocates on behalf
of anyone in need. In addition, she actively urges everyone
in her community to exercise their invaluable right to
inspires all who know her to do well and become actively
engaged in both their neighborhood and their country.
has been a resident of the Brownsville section of Brooklyn
for 23 years. She works as a case manager for the New York
City Human Resource Administrations Family Assistance
oldest of ten children, Ms. Hunter grew up understanding the
importance of being there for your family. Shes a survivor
of domestic violence who decided her children were more
important to her than her abusive husband. She and her
husband divorced, and she then became the single mother of
four young children.
Ms. Hunters youngest child was 19 years old, she took on
the daunting task of adopting and raising three of her
sisters children. She assumed this responsibility not as a
token effort for another family member, but rather as an act
of love, devotion and commitment to the children. Ms. Hunter
is a woman who possesses an abundance of goodness, kindness
is truly an extraordinary woman and one of Brooklyns unsung
Nolan emigrated from Co. Limerick, Ireland to the United
States in 1953 and has been a resident of Brooklyn ever
Mary is a
staunch supporter of her community as well as several
Irish-American organizations. She serves as a member of
Brooklyns Community Board 10. She is also a founding member
of the Bay Ridge Irish Rovers Minor Football Club. In 1977,
Mary was elected a trustee of the Minor Board of the New
York Gaelic Athletic Association. She is also a founding
member of the Brooklyn-Staten Island Chapter of the Irish
Immigration Reform Movement and served on the Board of
Directors of the Emerald Isle Immigration Center as well as
the Lay Advisory Board of the Brooklyn-Queens Irish
Apostolate. In addition, Mary is a steadfast supporter of
the Northern Island Civil Rights Association and for the
past 35 years has been coordinator of its annual Bloody
currently president of the Commodore Barry Club of Brooklyn,
a group that promotes and publicizes the contributions of
outstanding naval hero Commodore Barry to the American War
Sloven, whos affectionately known as Pat, has been a
resident of the Bay Ridge section of Brooklyn for many
worked for AT&T for 14 years in the traffic engineers
office. After the birth of her second child, she became a
full-time homemaker and frequent volunteer at St. Patricks
Church, her local parish. Pat was honored at the churchs
Founders Ball for her many years of volunteer work. Shes
been a supporter of the Little League, Girl Scout leader,
softball coach, Board of Elections worker, and CCD aide. For
many years, Pat has also been a member of the St. Patricks
chapter of The Dominican Associates, a group that raises
money for the care of the retired and infirm Sisters of St.
Dominic. Pat still actively volunteers her time at the
church and school. She can be spotted in the kitchen at just
about any parish event.
always been proud of her Irish heritage. Her mother
emigrated from Limerick, and her fathers family hailed from
Galway. Pats a member of the Ladies Ancient Order of
Hibernians, Division 22. To keep the Irish spirit alive in
her family, Pat encouraged her daughter and granddaughters
to take up Irish step dancing. Pat knows quite a few of the
Ceili dances and does a few steps herself now and again. Pat
can also be recognized as the lady who, for the last several
years, has been serving the coffee and Irish soda bread at
the start of the route of the Bay Ridge St. Patricks Day
Parade. This year, Pat will be marching proudly down 5th
Avenue as deputy to the Grand Marshall.
the proud daughter of Mary (nee White) and Edward McColgan.
Pat is fifth in a line of seven children, all of whom were
raised in Brooklyn. Pat was married to Tom Sloven until his
death in 1994. She raised three children Thomas, Patricia
and James and is the proud grandmother of seven.
you, Pat, for all your good deeds and fine Irish spirit!
Dr. Francine Hippolyte
extremely talented young doctor who was born and raised in
Brownsville, Brooklyn, Francine Hippolyte could have
practiced in virtually any hospital she wanted after
graduating magna cum laude from SUNY Downstate Medical
School and serving as chief resident in Obstetrics and
Gynecology at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine at
Long Island Jewish Medical Center. But Francine was
determined to return to Brooklyn to practice medicine and
make it a better place to live, while giving back to the
community that her immigrant parents came to for a better
barely spare time she has, Francine helped create and now
serves as the fundraising chair for a not-for-profit
organization that, among other things, gives educational
scholarships to deserving students and also educates the
Crown Heights community on health-related matters.
past, Francine has visited teenagers confined to a Brooklyn
detention center to help build their self-esteem and career
goals. And while in medical school, Francine met with
elementary school students to discuss topics ranging from
health and safety and how to deal with emergencies to
community service and environmental issues. As a medical
student, Francine also participated in a program that
provided tutoring and mentoring for the sickle cell anemia
patients and other chronically ill children in the pediatric
As a born
and bred resident of Brooklyn, Francines many
accomplishments and her dedication to the community make the
whole borough proud.
Pamela M. Junior
learned the importance of community involvement at a young
age and has intensified her commitment to it ever since.
late 1980s, Pamela took a two-month leave from her job as a
legal assistant at a major law firm to work on Jesse
Jacksons campaign in his Bedford Stuyvesant headquarters.
In the l990's, she became actively involved in Bedford
Stuyvesant community affairs. From 1996 to 2004, she served
on Community Board 3 in the capacities of 1st and 2nd vice
president, chairperson of economic development and
chairperson of social service. Among many other
accomplishments, Pamelas efforts as social service
chairperson resulted in the development of the only
transitional (Tier II) shelter in Brooklyn serving families
fleeing domestic violence.
through 2006, Pamela served as president of the 500 Decatur
Street Block Association. She is currently chairperson of
the Northeast Brooklyn Housing Development Corporation, the
African American Planning Commission, the Women's Caucus for
Congressman Edolphus Towns, the Unity Democratic Club, and
Key Women of America (Brooklyn Chapter). She is also on the
Board of Directors of Lucille Rose Manor Senior Citizen
Housing, Daughters of Dorcas I O.E.S., and Zion Baptist
the Student Sponsor Program, Pamela has mentored and
provided financial assistance to deserving high school
students attending private school. In 2006, she was
"Principal for a Day" at P.S. 21. In 2005, and again in
2006, she reached out to the Bedford Stuyvesant, Oceanhill-Brownsville
and East New York communities to provide Christmas gifts
through her corporate sponsor to over 250 children.
many contributions to the community have been noted
favorably in the Congressional Record by Brooklyn
Congressman Edolphus Towns. She has also received numerous
awards and commendations from various institutions and local
Pamela is also a proud mother. Her daughter, Nicole,
currently attends Temple Universitys Beasley School of Law.
Linda Mary Gallagher
born and raised in the Bay Ridge section of Brooklyn. She
attended St. Anselms grammar school, Bishop Kearney High
School and went on to receive a BA in Media Communications
from Niagara University. Linda is employed as a producer at
Rhinofx, a special effects postproduction facility, where
she produces television commercials for the top advertising
agencies in the country.
spare time is spent coaching the girls softball and
basketball teams for the St. Patricks Youth Program. In
some cases the teams have gone on to win Diocesan
championships. Lindas an active member of the Ladies
Ancient Order of Hibernians, Division 22 and has been a
member of the Bay Ridge St. Patricks Day Parade Committee
for several years. Linda was very proud and honored to be
selected as Deputy to Grand Marshall Ed Wilkinson and
aspires to bring more youthfulness to the parade. She
encourages her peers to volunteer for the parade committee
in an effort to maintain this great Bay Ridge tradition for
the daughter of Hugh and Geraldine (nee Fagan) Gallagher and
has three siblings: Catherine (Rob Rose), Hughie, and
Daniel. She is the proud Aunt of Robbie, Bridget and Shannon
graduating from St. Francis College in 1990, Josephine
Beckmann went to work for then New York City Council Member
Stephen DiBrienza, where, as a community liaison, she worked
with local government agencies to resolve community-based
problems, organized graffiti cleanups, and worked closely
with block associations and neighborhood groups to refurbish
local parks and playgrounds. Her commitment to working on
issues of importance to communities was cultivated during
her tenure at the City Council.
Josephine moved to Dyker Heights with her young family.
Before long, she found herself advocating on behalf of her
community. In 1996, she rejuvenated The 800 Block
Association of 70th Street, where she worked with residents
on local quality of life issues. Her community activism
continued through 2002, when she started The United
Neighbors Association of Fort Hamilton Parkway, which now
is comprised of 100 families living adjacent to the Fort
Hamilton Parkway shopping strip between 66th and 74th
Streets. As leader of the group, Josephine has raised
awareness of the need to regulate Internet cafés, organized
semi-annual graffiti cleanups, and worked with the 68th
Police Precinct on quality of life issues.
leaving the City Council in 2001, Josephine served as the
executive director of the Neighborhood Assistance Corp. of
Brooklyn, a not-for-profit organization that worked
hand-in-hand with community groups to support organized
sports for young people aged 10 though 16.
November 2003, Josephine became District Manager of
Community Board 10, where shes been a staunch advocate for
the residents of Bay Ridge, Dyker Heights and Fort Hamilton
on all matters concerning the delivery of city services.
is also a parishioner of St. Ephrems Roman Catholic Church.
Shes married to John Beckmann, a lieutenant in the New York
City Police Department. They have two children, Jayne and
Janie C. Whitney
East New York
Whitney was born in Cuthbert, Georgia. At an early age her
family moved to New York, where she began her formal
education. After a distinguished high school career, she
attended Long Island University, where she studied
accounting. Her future promised to be lucrative, but her
humanitarian spirit pressed her to work for the betterment
of people. Janies love for children was the ultimate
driving force behind her decision to make a career change.
While employed as an assistant controller at Dowell &
Company, she established a daycare and after-school program
in the Bushwick section of Brooklyn. This endeavor inspired
her to become more involved in the field of education.
In 1983, Janie co-founded Bethlehem Academy, now known as
the Trey Whitfield School. Over the past two decades, Trey
Whitfield has become one of the most respected private
schools in New York State. The school stresses strong
academics as well as value-based education, impressing upon
the students and faculty the need to develop strong moral
character. Janie is also cofounder and president of the Trey
Whitfield Foundation, Inc., which motivates and helps
support deserving boys and girls of all nationalities from
across the country. It also recognizes outstanding adults
who serve our children and our communities. Working as
administrator of Trey Whitfield School and president of the
Trey Whitfield Foundation, Janie continues to be involved in
what she cherishes most ? the molding of our future leaders.
also devoted to various church and community projects. For
more than 20 years, she has helped secure educational
scholarships for inner-city students to attend prep schools
in New England and New York City. She served as a trustee at
Brewster Academy, which is located in Wolfeboro, New
Hampshire. She also serves as treasurer of My Sister My
Friend, Inc., a group that seeks to have a positive impact
by helping to build and restore lives through mentoring,
supporting community programs and empowering women.
Janies many honors and citations are the Women of Brooklyn
Incorporateds Outstanding Leadership in Education award;
the Excellence in Education award presented by the
District 19 Community Superintendent of the New York City
Public Schools; and the Unsung Hero Award from the
Congressional Black Caucus Spouses. Considering Janie to be
an outstanding role model, the Girl Scouts of Bethlehem
Baptist Church presented her with their first Outstanding
Women Award. To Janies credit, the Trey Whitfield School
also received an honorable mention for Unique Community
Impact at the Building Brooklyn Awards Ceremony.
Carolyn Sanders James
Sanders James is the Brooklyn Borough Director for the
Office of the Mayor Community Assistance Unit. She acts as
the mayors liaison to local community boards and the
Brooklyn community. She also responds and investigates
complaints from residents.
initiates cooperative relationships between elected
officials at all levels of government and local community
leaders. She coordinates community-based meetings with city
agencies to create task forces to resolve neighborhood
problems. She also conducts field research and walking
tours in a multi-agency effort to correct violations of
administrative code and city agency regulations.
attends community board meetings, district service cabinet
meetings, police precinct council meetings and meetings with
other city agencies. She meets with local community groups,
civic organizations, religious groups and business leaders.
She also develops profiles of these groups, based on their
leaders, religious or political affiliation, and geographic
as a surrogate speaker for the mayor at public and private
functions. She delivers mayoral proclamations on the
mayors behalf. She also represents the mayor, the
commissioner and the first deputy commissioner at meetings
and special events.
is responsible for assisting the Operation and Response Unit
with emergency situations and potential crises in
communities throughout New York.
serves as an agency liaison to two city agencies and is
responsible for being knowledgeable about the agencys
organizational structure, policies and procedures. She
keeps staff regularly informed of any agency policy and
procedural changes and assists them in addressing
Tanis was born in Port-au-Prince, Haiti and immigrated to
the United States in 1982. She is a Clinical Social Worker
and a Certified Family Therapist. In 1999, Ms. Tanis
founded Dwa Fanm (meaning womens rights in Haitian
Creole) with other Haitian and American women in her
community to promote the rights, dignity, respect and
survival of Haitian women and girls. She served on the
board of directors for the first two years until 2002, when
she became the organizations first Executive Director.
with the Haitian immigrant community began in 1995 with the
Brooklyn AIDS Task Force and Kings County Hospital,
providing supportive services, advocacy and psychosocial
counseling to refugees and immigrants living with HIV/AIDS.
began her social work studies at New York University,
completed her Masters in Clinical Social Work at Fordham
University and her Post-Masters Certification in Family
Therapy at Hunter Colleges Post-Graduate Clinical Studies.
Reverend Lydia Mendoza
Lydia Mendoza was born in Brooklyn, New York. In 1989, she
received an Associates Degree from New York City Technical
College, as well as a Certificate of Commendation for
mentoring from CUNY and the Board of Education. In 1991,
she co-founded the 83rd Precinct Clergy Coalition with
Detective Eddie Santiago. She is currently a member and
serves as the vice president. She is the first woman to be
the vice president of the Clergy Council. She also served
various years as an Executive Board member for the Hispanic
Clergy Association of Brooklyn. In 1993, she received a
proclamation from the New York City Council Office of the
Presidency for community service.
Reverend Mendoza co-founded The End Times Pentecostal
Church, alongside her husband, Bishop Luis Mendoza. They
currently serve the Bushwick community of Brooklyn, with a
food and clothing pantry. She collaborates with outside
agencies to service community residents. In January 2003,
she became a clergy liaison from One Police Plaza and was
assigned to the 83rd Precinct. She has served as personnel
practice chairman for St. Barbaras Headstart and Chairman
for the Bushwick High School for Social Justice School
September 2006, she was elected vice president of the 83rd
Precinct Community Council, and is currently a member of
Community Board Four. Her mission is to serve her
Brown-Drumgo resides in the Brownsville section of Brooklyn.
She works as a community outreach coordinator at Healthfirst,
a healthcare insurance company that provides affordable
medical access to the underserved in New York City and Long
Island. Ms. Brown-Drumgo assists in coordinating coverage on
a low or no-cost basis.
Brown-Drumgo donates a considerable amount of her spare time
working for the well-being of the residents of Brownsville.
She has assisted on numerous community quality of life
projects and campaigns. She is also on the beacon advisory
board of I.S. 323. In addition, shes a member of the PTA
and a board member of the Twelve Town YMCA. Ms. Brown-Drumgo
is also the co-founder of Sister to Sister-in-Law, which
is a womens support group.
Brown-Drumgo is also the proud mother of three girls, who
hopefully will follow in her altruistic footsteps.
Candy is an artist, dancer and teacher, who was born in
Brooklyn, New York and began painting and drawing as a
child. She went on to earn a degree in art at CCNY. While
studying, she pursued dance, which turned into a career of
performing and teaching spanning more than 25 years.
only natural that movement is a part of her artwork. Though
many of her paintings and collages are inspired by that
experience, growing up in Brooklyn and her pride in her
Haitian and Caribbean heritage also inspire her work. Ms.
Candys goal is always to lift her audience, engage them in
the dance and help them remember their own heritage. In
July 2004, she displayed her paintings and collages at the
Fulton Art Fair and has since exhibited in galleries, art
fairs, theatres, restaurants, convention halls, municipal
spaces and private homes.
heritage and growing up in her beloved Brooklyn are Ramona
Candys personal collage. Its what keeps her fingers, feet
and spirit dancing. She is a choreographer on canvas.
Williams, who originally hails from Ohio, is now a resident
of the Crown Heights section of Brooklyn. She believes that
service to ones community is an essential component of a
life well lived and has demonstrated this throughout much of
her adult life.
Williams obtained her MS degree in Public Health from
Columbia University in 2001. Upon completion of the program,
she planned to return to Washington, DC, but instead fell in
love with the diversity, culture and people of Brooklyn and
decided to remain here.
next five years, Joy worked as the project director for
various HIV/AIDS prevention research studies at Downstate
Medical Center in Brooklyn. The studies targeted both HIV
negative and positive adults and adolescents living in the
hardest hit sections of Brooklyn. As a resident of Crown
Heights, she saw firsthand how important it is to educate
communities about HIV/AIDS and other health issues and
connect the residents to services. Shes therefore
volunteered to disseminate such information at various
health fairs, churches and anywhere else where
people congregate and are willing to stop and listen.
Williams has volunteered for many other community groups and
causes. She served as a mentor for adolescent girls at the
Blossom program. She also volunteers for the Food Bank of
New York, the New York Urban League, and many other
organizations. In addition, she serves on a committee to
help the Nike Corporation in its fight against childhood
obesity in Brooklyns public schools.
most certainly a credit to Brooklyn, which she now calls
Johnson was born in North Carolina. She received a Bachelor
of Arts Degree in Economics, with a minor in Business
Administration from Winston Salem State University.
been employed by Polytechnic University for more than 20
years and served as: Director of International Student
Recruitment and Assistant Dean of University Admissions.
Currently she is the Executive Director of the Promise Fund
Boards Center for Youth in Engineering & Science and the
Associate Dean of Undergraduate Admissions.
responsibilities included: supervision and implementing
university and school-based programs, creating opportunities
for the university to collaborate with administration,
teachers and students at the middle and secondary school
levels; establishing links with community-based
organizations, corporations, foundations, developing and
implementing procedures to operate internal and external
special programs and representing the university in
governmental, public, private and parochial school
She is also
a specialist in the evaluation of international and domestic
education documents and immigration credentials. Her travels
include visiting: Taiwan, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Singapore,
Thailand, Pakistan, India, Japan, Mexico and Haiti.
Lumi Michelle Rolley
Michelle Rolley is a Web designer. She was named Volunteer
of the Year by the Junior League in 2005. She has been a
Park Slope resident for ten years. Ms. Rolley and her husband
Eric McClure are two of the founders of Park Slope
Neighbors, which is a community organization involved in the
economic, aesthetic, civic, and cultural diversity of the
She is a
trustee of the Park Slope Civic Council and editor of the
sustainable development blog, nolandgrab.org. Her interests
include volunteering with youth organizations and promoting
architectural preservation and affordable housing.
in the New York City public school system for nearly 40
years, Felice Lippo is not just your average teacher. Shes
taught generations of Brooklyn families, and to this day is
the last one to leave her school each evening. In fact, the
schools janitors must nearly eject her from the building
well after 6 p.m. each night.
Lippos dedication to teaching is unparalleled. For her 40
years of selfless and devoted service to thousands of
Brooklyn students, she deserves our gratitude and
Bay Ridge Sunset Park
someone had told me twenty years ago where I would be today,
I would not have believed them.
Hayat Hayek, president of Hayat Caterers, Inc. (formerly
known as Bon Appetite), emigrated from Lebanon to the
United States more than 20 years ago, she was, in her own
words, given the freedom to pursue the American dream.
Since then, due to her remarkable motivation, courage and
determination to excel, Hayat has become a very successful
businesswoman in the Bay Ridge and Sunset Park communities,
and a role model for immigrant families, especially Lebanese
women in her industry.
arrived here, Hayats training was as a schoolteacher.
Although this initially served her well, she quickly
realized she would need to do more. Her greatest motivation
to do so came from her four children, in addition to the
realization that in America anything is possible.
support of her family and dogged determination, Hayat set
out on a path to build her own business. Over time, she
managed to create a company which now caters for events
sometimes in excess of 300 people. Her Middle Eastern
cuisine is sought after by U.N. ambassadors, families,
churches and wedding couples alike.
addition to her busy career, Hayat is dedicated to her
husband, Maroun, and their four children. She also finds
time to be a very active member of her church.
back on the past 20 years, Hayat sums up her experience as
follows: My experiences have led me to believe that anyone
can realize their dreams with the courage to overcome
obstacles. I consider myself blessed. I attribute my success
to my overall determination, my courage to take advantage of
offered opportunities, and the support of my family and
other individuals who recognize and acknowledge my hard
work. With every success comes a higher standard, and my
work only improves because I continue to strive for
excellence. I am thankful for everything I have earned, and
thankful for everything I have been given.
is an exceptional role model not only for immigrant
families, but for all her fellow Americans.
Nimmons has lived in the Wyckoff section of Brooklyn
specifically, in Wyckoff Gardens for the past 18 years and
has spent much of her time there making it a better place to
live for herself and her neighbors.
Nimmons served as a parent advisory member of her local PTA.
She was later elected president and then second
vice-president of the school districts PTA. Subsequently,
she became involved in the Wyckoff Gardens Residents
Association, a group thats dedicated to improving the
quality of life of the residents and also the larger
community. Ms. Nimmons ultimately became the groups
president and continues to serve in this capacity.
time, Ms. Nimmons involvement in the residents association
led her to become much more involved in developing job
opportunities for members of her community. After Ms.
Nimmons reached out to a number of community leaders and
residents, they developed and distributed a needs assessment
to the areas residents. As it turned out, the residents
primary concern was getting and retaining employment.
Nimmons was determined to address their concern. She
contacted local developers and some additional community
leaders in an effort to create more job opportunities.
Ultimately, her efforts resulted in the formation of Public
Housing Communities, Inc. (PHC), a consortium comprised of
the presidents of various residents associations and others,
all of whom are committed to establishing and promoting
programs that promise to enhance small business development,
job creation and referrals, community enrichment, community
involvement and self-sufficiency in Brooklyns public
housing communities. Not surprisingly, Ms. Nimmons also
serves as PHCs executive director. PHCs overarching aim is
to help community members reach their potential through
existing resources or by generating new ones. Most
importantly, PHC partners with developers and other
organizations which can provide jobs or appropriate job
training for members of the community.
credit, PHC recently negotiated a community benefits
agreement in connection with the much publicized Atlantic
Yards project thats to be developed by Forest City Ratner
and Companies. Under the agreement, which was signed by PHC
and seven other local groups, PHC will be responsible for
the coordination, management and oversight of the public
housing component of the benefits agreement. Consistent with
its mission, PHC will assist area residents and various
community associations in accessing available resources
while also helping to empower them.
CHERYL A. GOODMAN
I believe we are all put here . . . by
God to help one another. Cheryl A. Goodman truly lives by
This single mother
of two children is very involved in her church and
community. At the Church of the Open Door in
Ms. Goodman serves as administrative secretary, chairperson
of the Church Council and a member of the choir. Ms. Goodman
is also co-leader of V.I.R.T.U.E., a program for young women
aged 11 to 18 designed to help them develop their minds,
bodies and spirits so they will become responsible and
productive members of society.
Ms. Goodmans work
with young women extends into the greater
community, where she serves as co-leader of Girl Scout Troop
Ms. Goodman is a fine example of what can
be accomplished by service to ones community and God.