By Eden Laikin
As Women’s History Month comes to an end, Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano and his wife, Linda, took time out to honor 16 Nassau women who were nominated for a variety of efforts, as the County’s Outstanding Women of Achievement
“We appreciate the dedication, commitment and tenacity of all of the nominees here tonight, and we applaud you for the work or volunteer acts you performed in Nassau County and continue to do on a regular basis, simply to make life better for those around you,” Mangano told the crowd of about 100 gathered in the ceremonial chambers of the Theodore Roosevelt Executive & Legislative Building in Mineola. “Your strength serves as a role model for others in our communities, and it is for your selfless and extraordinary acts that we honor you here today.”
The nominees, who were presented with certificates and a County pin, by the Manganos, included:
Janet Scarandino of Valley Stream, who helped Sandy victims in Island Park and Freeport, by buying groceries and preparing hot meals;
Melanie Van Voorhees of Floral Park who donated 12-inches of hair to Locks of Love, cooked at the Ronald McDonald House, and prepared Thanksgiving and Christmas baskets for local families in need.
Marion Endrizzi, former mayor and Village clerk of Plandome Heights, has been one of the most involved and active civic leaders in the community.
Ione Moran of Farmingdale, who helped neighbors in her senior complex get through 11 days without power after Sandy, by making them hot coffee and food.
Natalie Malik of Levittown, who bought $500 worth of badly needed items after Sandy and delivered them to residents in the state’s hardest hit areas.
Sandy Oliva and Cynthia Scott, who every day help victims of domestic violence, sexual assault and child abuse – and were the driving force in the establishment of the Safe Center of coordinated support services.
Lisa Williams Schary of North Bellmore who has tirelessly fought for – and advocated on behalf of – many land preservation and drinking water issues.
Christine Hunter, who currently supervises the Nassau Correctional Center-based substance abuse treatment program and was a driving force in the development of the County’s Drug Treatment Courts.
Mary McCaffery of Bethpage who has volunteered with Mommas House, a program for homeless young women, Walk About – a home for homeless young men – and Family and Children’s Association;
Jill Johnson of Levittown who – as an Alcohol and Substance Abuse Counselor – has lectured around the country on “Compulsive Obsessive Behavior and Stress Management.”
Annie Donnelly, an Assistant Nassau District Attorney, who serves on the Organized Crime & Rackets Bureau and the Technology Crime Unit, where she prosecutes Internet crimes, cyber-bullying, sexting, and online sexual predators.
Maureen Hinkelman, who has served as CEO of the Hospice Care Network in Woodbury for the past 25 years, and showed extraordinary leadership in the aftermath of Superstorm Sandy.
Debra Ann Kasimakis of Hicksville, who as chair and leader of the Long Island Fringe Festival, has helped keep the arts alive in Nassau and throughout Long Island – and has worked for years on behalf of the Hicksville Gregory Museum.
Anusha Syed, who at 15, is already known for her dynamic public speaking and community service, serves as Chairman of the Kids Committee of American Community Empowerment and aspires to attend Cornell University to study law and political science.
Carol Jenkins, a recently retired 30-year member of the Nassau County Police Department – and a volunteer firefighter in her community – who earned recognition for the most “rabbit” saves.