2001-10-20 / Columnists

Chatting With Chapey

By Dr. Geraldine M. Chapey

By Dr. Geraldine M. Chapey

On Friday, October 12, 2001, family, friends and colleagues gathered together to honor an educational leader. Long-time Rockaway resident Mary Manti has served as the principal of P.S. 15 in District 15, Brooklyn. Mary has done an outstanding job in steering the school through very difficult times. Mary assumed the principalship when her friend and colleague Patrick Daly was shot and killed in crossfire as he looked after his students from P.S. 15 who lived in the housing development.

Mary's leadership talents are very evident. She has the ability to work well with all people. P.S. 15 was fortunate to be able to have at its helm an articulate, motivated and enthusiastic educational leader like Mary Manti.

At the party former Superintendent William P. Casey who is now serving as Chief Executive for Program Development at the New York City Board of Education talked in superlative terms about the dynamic leadership of Mary Manti. Superintendent Casey reflected on the outstanding work that Mary has contributed to the children of New York City.

It was inspirational to see the strong leadership qualities that Mary Manti has brought to P.S. 15. As I spoke to the many professionals who had gathered for the retirement party one could notice their enthusiasm for their work, the sense of dedication and the spirit of camaraderie that exists.

The current superintendent Carmen Farina had glowing words for the work that Mary Manti accomplished. Carmen recalled her many associations with District 15 during her educational career.

The former guidance counselor, Judith Gerstman who is now the Director of Pupil Personnel Support Services at District 15, has an outstanding sense of humor. She developed a funny and humorous tribute to Mary. She really should be a stand-up comic. As she related her experiences at P.S. 15, she had everyone laughing. In case she decides to change careers she has a future with Jay Leno or David Letterman. Her timing, her choice of words and her vocal inflections made the tribute funny and memorable.

On behalf of Regent Dr. Geraldine Chapey, I presented Mary Manti with a Certificate for Excellent Professional Leadership from the University of the State of New York and the NYS Board of Regents. It noted that Mary Manti has been a true educational leader. She is an inspiration to her colleagues.

Mary Manti received a proclamation from Borough President Howard Golden. He complimented Mary for being a fine, public-spirited professional who has immeasurably enhanced the quality of life within our city.

Mary Manti is an accomplished academician, an enthusiastic administrator and an asset to our public school system.

Best wishes to Mary Manti in her future endeavors.  Congratulations to Mary - a professional of distinguished achievement, vision and service.

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