Tag Archives: Hall of Fame

‘Top Women’ honored during award and networking event

By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photos by Allen Ngai

Terrace on the Park shined bright Thursday night as 50 talented women, who have each seen success in their careers, were honored at The Queens Courier’s 2015 Top Women In Business Networking Award Dinner.

The celebration, which saw close to 800 people attend, opened up with an expo and cocktail hour. During this time, honorees and guests were able to mingle, network and exchange business information with leaders from all different fields.

During this year’s event, six women, who were previously Top Women in Business honorees, were inducted into the Hall of Fame for their hard work and achievements.

“We are so grateful to be able to see that they are continuing to climb the ladder of success and be a role model for everyone in this room,” said Victoria Schneps, publisher of The Queens Courier.

Hall of Fame inductees included Connie Delaige, affirmative action coordinator, JFK & LGA Airports; Dr. Marcia V. Keizs, president, York College; Pat Thompson, customer service/public relations manager, Bombardier; Mayra DiRico, senior vice president and director of retail banking, Astoria Bank; Georgiana Reese-Benatti, director of community relations, New York Community Bank; and Patricia Naylor Thomas, president, Thomas Coaching Company Inc.

“Most of my roots are in Queens and to me to be inducted into the Hall of Fame is just thrilling, and I actually am very honored to be amongst all these very diverse women that have in each way made a difference in the borough and in New York,” said Hall of Fame inductee Mayra DiRico.

Fellow Hall of Famer Pat Thompson also said she was honored and surprised to have been selected to receive the distinguished award.

“I’m very honored. I have a lot of respect for Vicki and what she has done to give women this exposure,” Thompson said. “It’s just a very fulfilling experience to be among people of such diverse occupations, and the networking is so valuable.”

The night began with Natalia Segura singing the National Anthem and a moment of silence for Jack Friedman, the Queens Chamber of Commerce executive director who passed away in April at age 55.

All the honorees of the night received their awards from emcee Alison Morris, FOX 5 business reporter, and Miss New York 2014 Jillian Tapper.

This year, The Courier also bestowed a Special Award to Main Street Radiology — which has two locations in Bayside, one in Flushing and a newly opened office in Jackson Heights — as a top women’s imaging center of Queens.

Honoree Andrea Tsoukalas, attorney at Forchelli, Curto, Deegan, Schwartz, Mineo & Terrana LLP, was honored for her 15 years in the field and for her concentration in zoning, land use, environmental and municipal law matters.

“I feel really privileged and humble to be among these women,” Tsoukalas said. “In my work, it’s really a man’s world so it’s wonderful to see the revolution. We’re breaking through the field.”

During the networking portion of the night, the expo also featured various vendors and businesses, which sold products and shared information on their services.

One of the vendors was Investors Bank, which along with spreading the word of their services was also present to support Honoree Maria Odysseos, market manager of the Astoria branch of Investors Bank.

“We’re very proud of her. She’s an extraordinary woman and it’s a well-deserved honor for her,” said Charoula Ioannou, branch manager for the Bayside Investors Bank location. “She’s our top woman in business.”

The event also raised $3,300 for the nonprofit organization Dress for Success.

This year’s honorees were Wafa Abboud, Human First, Inc.; Stephanie Barry, Rapid Realty; Dr. Mahdis A. Behzadi, Office of Dr. Behzadi; Rochelle S. Berliner, Law Of¬fice of Rochelle S. Berliner; Debra J. Brennessel, MD, Queens Hospital Center; Stella Castriota, Giorgio’s Salon & Spa; Laura Copersino, Douglas Elliman Real Estate; Valerie D’Amico, Valiance International Corp.; Ilana Davidov, Davidov Law Group, P.C.; Patricia Dunphy, Rockrose Development Corp.; Maria A. D’urso, RN, MSN, New York Hospital Queens; Janet Elias, Alley Pond School; Sharon Etwaroo, Edible Arrangements Fresh Meadows; Flo Federman, Nussbaum Yates Berg Klein & Wolpow, LLP; Luz Ford, New York Life Insurance Company; Tamara Gavrielof, Signature Bank; Victoria Grappone, Maspeth Federal Savings Bank; Heather Harrison, Farrell Fritz; Patricia Hull, RN, MSN, Parker Jewish Institute For Health Care & Rehabilitation; Vasundhara Kalasapudi, India Home; Malikka Karteron, B’Above Worldwide Institute; Penelope Kokkinides, Centerlight Healthcare; Margaret Leacock, People’s United Bank; Janice Li, Crystal Window & Door Systems; Rebecca Lipscomb, Hirani Group; Rev. Aqueelah Ligonde, First Presbyterian Church in Jamaica; Angelena Lucheux, Tailormade for You Skincare; Nora Martins, Davidoff, Hutcher and Citron LLP; Karen Mitchell, True Hair Company; Ef¬fie Neo¬fitidis, Flushing Bank; Maria A. Odysseos, Investors Bank; Andrea Ormeno, Queens Economic Development Corporation; Eileen Parenti, Renaissance Home Health Care; Alexandria Perotti, Holt Construction Corp.; Robyn Rosenblum, MD, New York Hospital Queens; Miriam Ruiz, The Federal Savings Bank; Dr. Kerry Rut, The Woman’s Health Pavilion; Chanelle Small, DDS, Midtown Endodontics; Dr. Renee Spiegel, Elmhurst Hospital Center; Star Young, Women to Women by Julia; Patricia Stein, Liberty National Title Agency; Avni Thakore, MD, MS, FACC, AdvantageCare Physicians; Andrea Tsoukalas, Esq., Forchelli, Curto, Deegan, Schwartz, Mineo & Terrana, LLP; Margaret Ventimiglia, Insignia Renovations, Inc.; Dr. Lihong Wei, Queens Medical Associates; Connie Delaige, JFK & LGA Airports; Dr. Marcia V. Keizs, York College; Pat Thompson, Bombardier; Mayra DiRico, Astoria Bank; Georgiana Reese-Benatti, New York Community Bank; and Patricia Naylor Thomas, Thomas Coaching Company Inc.

Sponsors for the event were Investors Bank, Astoria Bank, Douglas Elliman Real Estate, Dale Carnegie Training, Flushing Bank, AdvantageCare Physicians, New York Hospital Queens, India Home, AgeWell New York, The City University of New York, People’s United Bank, Daily News, Queens Medical Associates, Crystal Window & Door Systems, LTD., Rockrose Development Corp., Main Street Radiology, Elmhurst Hospital Center, National Grid, conEdison, Parker Jewish Institute for Health Care & Rehabilitation, and New York Community Bank.


Mets tickets go on sale Monday at 10 a.m.

| brennison@queenscourier.com

photo - rotundaw

Spring training is in full swing, Opening Day is a month away: time to get your Mets tickets.

New York Mets tickets go on sale to the general public on Monday, March 5 at 10 a.m.

The Mets open their season on against their rival the Atlanta Braves on Thursday, April 5 at 1:10 p.m.

Throughout the year, the Mets 50th anniversary, the team will celebrate their history. During their golden anniversary, the Mets will honor a star player from each decade with a bobblehead day. Tom Seaver, Rusty Staub, Keith Hernandez, Edgardo Alfonso and Mike Piazza will be honored.

For fans who miss Jose Reyes (or want to boo him), he returns to Citi Field on Tuesday, April 24 with the Miami Marlins.

This season the Mets have revived Banner Day, a tradition started when they still played in the Polo Grounds and continued to 1996. Fans make homemade banners, then parade around the field with them. Banner Day takes place on Sunday, May 27 against the Padres.

The World Series champion St. Louis Cardinals visit the Mets on Friday, June 1 and the team will induct former closer John Franco into their Hall of Fame on Sunday, June 3.

The Mets take on the Yankees in the annual Subway Series beginning on Friday, June 22. During the series you can bring your old Mets cap to trade in for a new one.

The team has also announced over the weekend a Friday night concert series.  On three Fridays throughout the season the Mets will host a postgame concert.  The concerts will feature REO Speedwagon on June 15, Cheap Trick on July 20 and MercyMe on August 10.

Some other notable promotions and giveaways the Mets will have during the season are:

– Tom Seaver bobblehead on Sunday, April 22

– Rusty Staub bobblehead on Saturday, May 26

– Fireworks Night on Tuesday, July 3

– Mini bat on Saturday, July 7

– Edgardo Alfonzo bobblehead on Saturday, July 21

– Mike Piazza bobblehead on Saturday, August 25

To purchase tickets visit Mets.com or call 718-507-TIXX.

Closer in the Hall: Mets to induct Franco

| smosco@queenscourier.com

Photo Courtesy of the New York Mets

The New York Mets added another fan favorite to their Hall of Fame, announcing plans to induct former closer John Franco this summer — making him the fifth new inductee in three years.

“I am truly honored and humbled by being elected into the Mets Hall of Fame,” Franco said. “Growing up as a kid in Brooklyn and … always rooting for the Mets, and then working my way through high school and college and having a good career here in New York, it’s an honor for me to be inducted into the Hall of Fame.”

Franco’s resume with the Mets includes 276 saves, tops in franchise history, as well as a National League pennant in 2000. Spending 14 of his 21 big league seasons in New York, Franco amassed 424 career saves, the most by a left-hander and fourth most all time. His 3.10 ERA as a Met ranks fifth amongst those with at least 700 innings pitched for the franchise. Franco posted a 2.89 overall career ERA with the Mets, Reds and Astros.

“Obviously, John’s career statistics are exceptional,” said Mets executive vice president of business operations Dave Howard. “But beyond that, Johnny was always very special to Mets fans and to this organization, being a true New Yorker who was committed to being a productive and good member of the community.”

Fifty years of Amazin’

| mpantelidis@queenscourier.com

Mets 50th Anniversary Logo - FINALw

The New York Mets are commemorating their golden anniversary in Amazin’ fashion.

In honor of their 50th season, the Mets, who played their first game on April 11, 1962, are initiating an array of tributes, including a new, celebratory logo.

Third baseman David Wright, first baseman Ike Davis and outfielder Lucas Duda were joined by six season ticket holders from the club’s inaugural season to introduce the changes on November 16.

The 50th anniversary logo integrates the same fundamental elements of the team’s classic blue and orange skyline symbol, with accents of gold to celebrate the milestone. The patch will be positioned in place of the current logo, on the left sleeve of team jerseys, as well as on the back of blue game caps.

The Mets will also don different uniforms, with blue pinstripe or white being worn at home and grey on the road, reflective of the jerseys the club wore in its inaugural season. The primary home uniform will be the pinstripe, paired with the blue caps, and white and black alternates will be worn only on select dates. The black dropshadow will also be removed from the Mets script logo, letters and numbers.

One of the Mets’ favorite pastimes, Banner Day, is also returning. Banner Day, which began in 1963, will have a unique 50th anniversary theme, complete with fans parading around the warning track holding signs representing their favorite memories from the team’s history.

Each decade of Mets history will be celebrated throughout the upcoming season with a series of alumni bobblehead giveaways, commencing in April with Mets legend and Hall of Famer Tom Seaver. Other promotional giveaways will include 50th anniversary logo caps, T-shirts and collectibles. One fortunate fan at each home game will also receive an authentic No. 50 jersey, embroidered with the name “FANTASTIC.”

To show reverence to the team’s past, the Mets Alumni Association presented by Citi will also make several appearances throughout the season, and new exhibits highlighting Mets 50th Anniversary artifacts will be featured in the Mets Hall of Fame & Museum in time for Opening Day on April 5.

To get information about the Mets’ plans for their golden anniversary, fans can visit the newly-launched Mets50.com web site. Visitors will be encouraged to share photos of their favorite Mets memories to enter the “FANtastic at 50” sweepstakes and win a pair of 2012 Mets season tickets. Other website features include an interactive timeline detailing significant and influential moments in Mets history and archival footage from the past half century.