Westchester County Good Things Happening, 6.8.2015

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Ossining retailer named among top 100 music stores

Mike Risko Music in Ossining has been named one of the world’s Top 100 musical instrument and product retailers for the second year in a row. The global association for the music products industry, the National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM), will formally present Mike Risko Music with the Top 100 honor during the industry’s upcoming trade event, Summer NAMM in Nashville.

The designation recognizes recipients for the following criteria: a demonstrated commitment to exceptional customer service; proven community advocacy and support for music education; an exemplary retail experience worth returning for and recommending to others; merchandising and marketing tactics that encourage repeat sales; sound planning for future success; employing marketing and training initiatives and engaging and effective use of web and social media.

“We are so excited to be named a top 100 music retailer for the second year. We are also thankful to our community for supporting the arts and our business. We are proud of this accomplishment and will continue to work hard to make sure to support the musical needs of our community,” owner Mike Risko said. The local school and store is also under consideration to receive the Dealer of the Year award, NAMM’s highest honor for retailers and seven other “Best of” awards, including Best Store Design, Best Marketing and Sales Promotion, Best Online Engagement, Music Makes a Difference Award, Best Emerging Dealer, Best Store Turnaround and Best Customer Service.

Food association alliance

The Specialty Food Association (SFA), an international not-for-profit business association fostering trade, commerce and interest in the specialty food industry and creators of the world-famous Fancy Food Shows, has joined the Hudson Valley Food & Beverage Alliance, an initiative of the Hudson Valley Economic Development Corp.

The Specialty Food Association, founded in 1952, is composed of domestic and foreign manufacturers, importers, distributors, brokers, retailers, restaurateurs, caterers and others in the specialty food business.

“The Specialty Food Association is steadfast in our commitment to the success of those who bring specialty foods to the consumer,” said Ron Tanner, SFA’s vice president of philanthropy, government and industry relations. “There are many innovative food and beverage entrepreneurs in the Hudson Valley and we look forward to building a long-lasting relationship with them and the alliance.”

Westhab appoints Pereira

Cesar Pereira has been appointed to serve as second vice chairman of the board of directors for Westhab Inc. in Yonkers, a not-for-profit provider of affordable housing and social services for homeless and low-income families in metropolitan New York. Pereira joined the organization’s board in 2011.

The general counsel of Judlau OHL Group, a civil construction company that performs work on large public projects, Pereira has spent more than 10 years working on a variety legal issues related to public and private construction projects.

Hospitals receive $1M donation

Two member hospitals of the Greater Hudson Valley Health System (GHVHS) have received $1 million from an anonymous donor. The $500,000 gifts were received by Orange Regional Medical Center and Catskill Regional Medical Center. Orange Regional will use the gift to support funding for an expansion project, which includes building a medical office building and a cancer center. Catskill Regional had already begun a fundraising effort to enhance and upgrade inpatient facilities throughout the hospital.

The donors were grateful patients at both hospitals and had made contributions thanking the hospitals’ doctors and nurses for their care and compassion over the years. The donors asked that no naming opportunities or recognition be provided.

“What a wonderful way to express their gratitude and tell our hospital system family that they are doing a terrific job,” said Scott Batulis, CEO of Greater Hudson Valley Health System.

Both hospitals, along with Grover M. Hermann Hospital in Callicoon, are members of the GHVHS. All three hospitals are not-for-profit organizations and rely on charitable giving to expand and enhance their programs and services.

The Westchester Bank names Ruzzi vice president

Donna Ruzzi has been appointed vice president and branch manager of The Westchester Bank’s Thornwood branch at 994 Broadway. With more than 20 years of commercial and retail banking experience mostly with Citibank, Ruzzi worked with business and personal banking customers throughout Westchester County. She managed branches in Bronxville, Ossining and Mount Kisco specializing in commercial lending and wealth management relationship banking. Active in the Westchester business community Ruzzi serves as a member of the chambers of commerce of Thornwood-Hawthorne and Pleasantville and the Professional Women of Westchester Networking Group.

John M. Tolomer, Westchester Bank president and CEO stated, “Donna’s warm personality and extensive banking experience make her a great fit for our Thornwood branch. … valued customers and for the bank.”

Nyack Hospital awards nursing scholarship

The second annual Margaret Mary Kennedy Nursing Scholarship from Nyack Hospital, which is made possible by a gift from Peter Kennedy of Orangeburg in honor of the excellent nursing care his wife received at the hospital, was recently awarded to Rina Elias of West Nyack. With the help of the scholarship Elias will pursue her master’s degree at Pace University.

Kennedy said, “I am proud to provide this opportunity for Nyack Hospital employees to pursue nursing education. The nursing care my wife, Margaret, received while a patient at Nyack Hospital was outstanding. Not only does this gift honor Margaret’s memory, but it allows me to give back to the people who provided her with such wonderful care while supporting nursing excellence for the future.”

The Margaret Mary Kennedy Nursing Scholarship will be awarded annually to a Nyack Hospital employee enrolled in a nursing program or for registered nurses pursuing an advanced degree.

ENTA honored

ENT and Allergy Associates LLP (ENTA) has been named a recipient of the 2015 MAP Award for High Performance in Revenue Cycle by the Healthcare Financial Management Association. The practice won the award in the private practice management competition. As a national award winner, ENTA demonstrated it expertise in the areas of meeting industry standard revenue cycle benchmarks (MAP Keys), implementing patient-centered recommendations and best practices embodied in HFMA’s Healthcare Dollars & Sense initiatives and achieving outstanding patient satisfaction.

OSI awards 2015 Barnabas McHenry Hudson River Valley Awards

New York-based Open Space Institute (OSI), an organization that protects scenic, natural and historic landscapes to provide public enjoyment, conserve habitat and sustain communities, announced the winners of its Barnabas McHenry Hudson Valley Awards, presented to young leaders working in support of the Hudson River Valley. The recipients of the McHenry Awards include Michael Meehan, working with agricultural nonprofit Glynwood in Cold Spring; Julia Czarnecki and Marissa Porter, working with Marist College; Tashae K. Smith, working with Manhattanville College; and Sheena Zhang, working with Newburgh Community Land Bank.

Ferreira elected to WEDC board

White Plains-based Women’s Enterprise Development Center Inc. elected Maria Ferreira to its board of directors. Ferreira is the community banking area president of suburban New York and Connecticut for Wells Fargo. Her responsibilities include providing executive leadership for retail and business banking operations, which includes 41 retail-banking stores and 394 employees. She is also a senior vice president for the company.

Braemar opens in Middletown

The Braemar at Wallkill assisted living facility recently opened a location in Middletown, offering 130 living units for seniors, 20 of which are already occupied. The senior staff team has also expanded, including the appointing of Harold Hildred, director of activities; Matthew J. Johnson, director of environmental services; Heather Cloke, director of resident services; and Nancy Rosen LaTorre, director of social work.

Ulster Savings Bank names interim president and CEO

Glenn Sutherland has been named interim president and CEO of Ulster Savings Bank replacing Lisa Cathie.

“For more than 50 years, Glenn Sutherland has been a well-respected financial-services professional in the Hudson Valley,” said Ann Marrott, chairwoman of Ulster Savings Bank Board of Trustees. “The board values his business acumen, integrity and first-hand knowledge of our community and is looking forward to working with him.”

Sutherland most recently retired as president, CEO and director of Catskill Hudson Bancorp Inc. after serving in that role for 10 years. Prior to this position he was vice president and president for Ellenville National Bank and Ellenville National Bancorp for nine years. He held senior and executive vice president roles and served as chief operating officer for the First National Bank of Rhinebeck, Community Bancorp Inc., First National Bank of the Hudson Valley and Hudson Chartered Bancorp, Inc. With his wife, Cynthia Lowe, he owned Sutherland and Lowe CPAs PC in Kingston for more than 10 years.

Verticon executive named RBA committee chairman

The Rockland Business Association (RBA) has selected Irving Zuckerman, co-president of Verticon Ltd., a general construction firm in Monroe, to be the next chairman of its Ambassadors Committee.

Roger Scheiber, RBA’s vice president of development said, “Irving is great with people and well respected. He has shown exceptional ability and a willingness to reach out to new members and help them to settle into membership.”

Maher honored

Robert Maher, CEO of St. Christopher’s Inc. in Dobbs Ferry, an organization that provides residential programming for teens with emotional, behavioral and learning disabilities, was honored with the “SmartCEO” Deals of Distinction Award by the Executives’ Association of New York City. The association honors innovative business leaders and deal makers from the greater New York City region who have unique stories about the significant impact they have made on their companies’ success.

“I accepted the award on behalf of all the dedicated, compassionate and caring workers, leaders and board members at St. Christopher’s,” Maher said. “It is their hard work and passion that helps turn dreams into realities for our students. That is a big reason why I believe we were recognized for this wonderful award.”

Gehrig and Appel named Larchmont Luminaries

The Larchmont Historical Society inducted Lou Gehrig, Baseball Hall of Fame first baseman, and Marty Appel, best-selling author and publicist, into Larchmont Luminaries. The annual award is given to prominent Larchmont residents, one living and one posthumous, for their contributions to the arts and athletics.

Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage promotes Riniti

Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage in Connecticut and Westchester County promoted Donna Riniti to regional vice president of the company’s Westchester County region. Riniti’s responsibilities include overseeing the 13 branch offices in Westchester and Putnam counties. She most recently served as branch manager of the Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage office in Yorktown Heights.

AIANYS award recipients named

The American Institute of Architects New York State (AIANYS) announced the recipients of the second annual excelsior awards at a reception held Monday, April 27 in Albany. Award categories included “New Construction Award,” “New Construction Award of Distinction,” “New Construction Award,” Renovations/Additions Award” and “New Construction Award of Distinction.”

The three professional award recipients included Stanford Lipsey with the Daniel Patrick Moynihan award for his preservation of architectural landmarks in Buffalo, Paul McDonnell with the Nelson Rockefeller Award for his work at the Buffalo Public Schools Director of Facilities and Jack Esterson with the Henry Hobson Richardson Award for his longstanding passion for public projects around the metropolitan New York area. For more information, visit aianys.org.

Gerety Building & Restoration named best

Katonah-based Gerety Building and Restoration, a general contractor specializing in residential renovations, additions and restorations, was named a “Best of Houzz” award winner for customer service by Houzz, an Internet platform for home building, remodeling and design for the second consecutive year. Each year, Houzz analyzes the ratings of their 25 million monthly users to reveal the top-rated home building, remodeling and design professionals in the country.

Houlihan hires Wallace

Bronxville-based Houlihan & O’Malley Real Estate Services announced that Jason Wallace, real estate professional, is joining the firm’s commercial sales group. Wallace, a 30-year food service veteran and past chairman of the board for the New York State Restaurant Association, is experienced in the Harlem restaurant and commercial real estate market. Prior to joining, Wallace served as president and CEO of Hospitality Concepts Restaurant Consulting, where he worked with architectural and interior design firms on more than 20 restaurant projects.

GMG Public Relations adds clients

Nanuet-based GMG Public Relations, a public relations and social media agency, is adding several new clients to the agency’s roster. New clients in the past six months include Bounce! Trampoline Sports Franchise Group, Statewide Abstract in White Plains, All County Asphalt in Orangeburg, Haath Designs in Port Chester, Rockland Independent Living Center in New City, Connections Contact Center in Chestnut Ridge, Home Aides of Rockland in New City, Fine Lines of Katonah, Eye Designs of Westchester in Scarsdale, Statler Grill in New York City and The Rockland Sons of Italy Lodge 2176 in Blauvelt. The work to be provided includes logo design and branding initiatives, website development, public relations, social media support, development of television and radio commercials and special event management.

ENTA elects new partner

Tarrytown-based ENT and Allergy Associates LLP (ENTA) elected Theresa Sohn, an allergist/immunologist in the Wayne, N.J., office as a new partner. In order to become an ENTA partner, a physician must demonstrate a consistent ability to practice medicine, have a proven track record of patient satisfaction and be embraced by the community in which he or she serves.

Sohn graduated from New Jersey Medical School in Newark, N.J., completed her residency in internal medicine at the New England Medical School in Boston and her fellowship training in allergy and immunology at Cornell University Medical Center in New York.

Third annual Project Yellow Light race raises $4,600

Mount Kisco-based Grand Prix New York — an indoor racing, social entertainment and corporate event venue — hosted its third annual 90-minute endurance race that raised $4,600 for Project Yellow Light, an organization that promotes awareness of the dangers of distracted driving. The race included 20 teams of two to five drivers, 16 of which included students from Brunswick School, Greenwich High School, Greenwich Country Day School, Greenwich Academy, Sacred Heart, King and Scarsdale Middle School competed for prizes, including seats in the Skip Barber Teen Safety and Survival School.

Franco joins White Plains Hospital

White Plains Hospital welcomed Mary Franco of New Canaan, Conn., in the newly created position of executive director of the foundation. In this role, Franco’s responsibilities include overseeing fundraising and donor cultivation for the organization, building on existing and new relationships between the hospital and the community.

Franco has more than 30 years experience in development, public affairs, government relations and corporate citizenship. She most recently served as senior vice president and executive director of the foundation for Cape Cod Healthcare in Massachusetts. Franco holds a bachelor’s degree in American studies from Merrimack College.

Zyloware Eyeware welcomes Camargo

Port Chester-based Zyloware Eyewear is welcoming Carlos Camargo as director of sales for Zyloware Latin America. He has more than 20 years experience in international sales and more than 17 years experience managing international sales in the optical industry. Prior to joining Zyloware, Camargo served 17 years as export sales manager for Zimco Optics, developing the company’s export business in Latin America and Mexico. He holds a bachelor’s degree from PUC University in Porto Alegre, Brazil.

Information for these features has been submitted by the subjects or their delegates.

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