Mt. Kisco, NY – A television producer, an environmentalist, an EMT and a pair of Town Clerks were among the fourteen women honored last night at Mt. Kisco Elementary School by Senator Terrence Murphy as recipients of the 2017 40th Senate District’s Women of Distinction Award. The ceremony celebrated the accomplishments of women throughout the Hudson Valley who have made their communities better places to live through their achievements in business, charitable works, and education.
“These exceptional female leaders were nominated by their peers and fellow community members for their exemplary service, tireless effort, and ability to inspire positive change,” said Senator Murphy. “Our honorees are held in the highest esteem by family, friends, and colleagues, and it is my privilege to shine a spotlight on their accomplishments.”
Caroline Murphy, a registered nurse at Northern Westchester Hospital for the past 25 years and the wife of Senator Murphy, served as the evening’s Master of Ceremonies. “Tonight we honor fifteen exceptional women from around the 40th Senate District. These women are successful businesswomen, entrepreneurs and volunteers whose work has improved the lives of others on the community,” said Mrs. Murphy. “Their dedication, ingenuity and leadership qualities have made them role models for young women looking to make their own mark in today’s world.”
Yorktown resident Paula Miritello, Senator Murphy’s Statewide Woman of Distinction honoree for 2017, was guest speaker. Ms. Miritello spoke about “My Brother Vinny,” the charitable organization she founded in 2013 that furnishes apartments for formerly homeless veterans. To date, the organization has helped over 440 veterans.
The 2017 Women of Distinction Award recipients are:
Ann Brady (Peekskill) – Ann currently serves as the Event Secretary for Colonial Terrace, is the Circulations Desk Assistant at the Peekskill Field Library and is a greeter at EQ Funeral Home. In addition, Ann volunteers for the This is Me Foundation, the Paramount Theater, Peekskill Sports Hall of Honor Committee, and has spent 28 years on the Peekskill St. Patrick’s Day Committee. For the past 20 years, she has worked with the Peekskill Parent Teacher’s Association, coordinating special events, fundraisers and programs.
Patricia Brennan Scova (Mount Pleasant) – As President of the St. Dominic’s Columbiettes, Patricia has been involved with the Mount Pleasant PTA, American Heart Association, American Cancer Society, and Annual Holy Rosary Bazaar. Patricia has chaired the Girls State Committee for the Gilbert Rauh American Legion Auxiliary. She has also been a Republican District Leader for more than 37 years and has been President of the Board of Directors for the Mount Pleasant Italian American Association for 14 years. She is currently serving her 12th term as Town Clerk for Mount Pleasant.
Amy Campanaro (Brewster) – Amy is the Executive Director of the Southeast Museum and an Adjunct Lecturer at Western Connecticut State University. She was a panelist at the Researching New York History Conference in 2015, and was awarded the Putnam County Historian’s Office Award for Exemplary Work in 2011. She is a member of the Old Southeast Church Cemetery Board and the Tilly Foster Advisory Board, and is past President of the Lower Hudson Conference.
Heather Cooper (Beekman) – Avolunteer for the Beekman Volunteer Fire Company, Heather is also Captain for the Beekman Volunteer Rescue Squad and coordinator for the Dutchess County Critical Incident Response Team. Heather is currently a Corrections Officer for the Dutchess County Sheriff’s Department. Her past positions include working as a teacher’s aide for United Cerebral Palsy, as an EMT and System Status Controller for Alamo EMS and an EMT and System Status Controller for Empress EMS.
Kathy Cucchiarella (Somers) – As the Chairwoman of Somers Partners in Prevention, Kathy has lead the charge in Somers against the heroin and opioid epidemic that is ravaging our community. Somers Partners in Prevention aims to build a safe haven by efficiently addressing alcohol and drug use, as well as other risk taking behaviors through advocacy, hope and awareness. Kathy is also the co-President of the Somers Central School District PTA.
Barbara Cutri (Mount Kisco) – Barbarais the Director of Operations at the Boys & Girls Club of Northern Westchester. She has held other positions within the organization, including Program Director, Child Care Director, and Early Child Educator. Barbara is also a Lector at St. Patrick’s Church, and a member of the Fox Lane Players, Latino Providers Network, Bedford Network and Mount Kisco Lions Club.
Jill Davis (Cortlandt) – When Jill is not working as Director of the Hendrick Hudson Free Library, she volunteers at the Reformed Church of Cortlandt. Jill continues to give back by serving with the Cortlandt Community Utility Task Force, as the co-creator of the New York Sustainable Libraries Initiative, and working with the Montrose Business Association and the Hudson Valley Chamber of Commerce. Jill was the President of the Westchester Public Library Directors Association, and now serves as a member of the New York Library Association.
Janet Donohue (Lewisboro) – Janet has been the Town Clerk since 2012. While the details and minutiae are certainly important, she brings a level of empathy and humanity to her job. She is also a leader in the Lewisboro Lions, and has been a member of the club since 2008. Her contributions to the Lions as a leading fundraiser, treasurer and volunteer, are vital to the club’s success.
Catherine Giordano (Town of Pawling) – An active member of the Pawling Chamber of Commerce, Catherine has been a reliable and steadfast resource of information relating to the town. During the day, Catherine serves her community as Town Clerk. She has been a force of nature behind the scenes for nearly three decades, and there is very little that goes on in Pawling that she does not play a positive role in.
Edith Keasbey (Patterson) – A staunch advocate for the environment, Edith is a member of the Patterson Environmental Conservation Commission, as well as Friends of the Great Swamp and Putnam County Land Trust. Among her most notable accomplishments is bringing greater recognition to the Great Swamp and fighting to prevent a landfill from being placed in the center of Patterson. She and her late husband donated Tom’s Path Preserve and Sterling Farm Preserve to the Putnam Land Trust.
Dianne Kleinmann (New Castle) – A retired social worker, Dianne has been a member of the Beautification Advisory Board since 2001, has served on the Millwood West End Advisory Board since 1999, and has been co-chair since 2008. She continues to be an advocate for seniors in her community by serving on the Senior Council of the New Castle Senior Citizen Center.
Lynne Mongon (Carmel) – A secretary at the Mahopac Middle School guidance office, Lynne has volunteered for the McDonough Foundation, which helps those affected with cancer. She organizes a Christmas “wish tree” to provide presents to needy families, has sent bikes to Haiti for those in need, and is involved in Mahopac’s Relay for Life. Lynne is also well known for “Lynne’s Sweet Treats,” her baking business that helps raise funds for her charitable causes.
Joanne Riccoboni (Southeast) – A stay-at-home mom for the last twenty years, Joanne home-schooled four children. She joined the 4-H Youth Development program of Putnam County and has since directed programs at Comcast, helping over 30 students learn television production. She and her students have provided a wide range of programming, including “Drug Crisis in our Backyard,” a talk show about the drug epidemic in Putnam County.
Donna Seedorf (Lewisboro) – Donna held a number of esteemed positions in the community, including co-Chair of the Lewisboro Ambulance Corps, co-Chair of the South Salem Library Fair, and Secretary of the Lewisboro Republican Committee. She was a successful fundraiser for the Lewisboro Library and Lewisboro Ambulance Corps, and was also a teacher at the South Salem Presbyterian Nursery School and Lewisboro Elementary School. Donna was a valued member of the Lewisboro community until her passing in 2008.