2001-12-15 / Columnists

Chatting With Chapey

By Dr. Geraldine M. Chapey
Chatting With Chapey By Dr. Geraldine M. Chapey

By Dr. Geraldine M. Chapey


Last week, I had the delightful opportunity to mix and mingle at Hadassah's fourth annual Snowbird Luncheon. The proceeds go to the Baby Layette Fund. This fund assures that all newborns of underprivileged mothers giving birth in Hadassah Hospitals in Israel will leave with a beautiful complete layette. They are given with love to both Israeli and Arab mothers with no discrimination.

The dynamic chairpersons of the luncheon were Marilyn Blicksilver and Lillian Lineoff. Their attention to detail, their very gracious manner and their exuberant personalities were a perfect blend to assure that everyone had a good time while raising funds for this worthy cause. Thanks to Marilyn Blicksilver, Lillian Lineoff and their committee for arranging a very delightful day.

Many of the women at the Hadassah luncheon are professionally trained educators. They have served as teachers, supervisors, and administrators in the NYC Schools.

More than ever we are proud of the valor and strength of our teachers. With their administrators, they provided stability, structure and counseling for our children and their parents during the recent challenge surrounding the events of the World Trade Center and the Rockaway tragedy.

At this time it is an extraordinary honor to recognize the 2002 New York State Teacher of the Year, Barbara Gordon. Barbara is a French teacher from Liverpool High School in the Liverpool Central School District. Chosen from 65 teachers nominated throughout the State, Gordon is the 32nd recipient of the award. Teaching for over thirty years, twenty-five of them at Liverpool, Barbara personifies excellence, enthusiasm and energy. Her students are motivated by her infusion of French culture into her lessons on routine grammar and vocabulary.

She spends vacations traveling to various French-speaking nations not limiting herself to France and Canada. French speaking villages in Africa have also been on her itinerary. She has utilized her knowledge and skill of the French language and culture to enrich her students and her colleagues. She has also reached out to assist French-speaking citizens of Kuanda and Cameroon, who are relocating in New York State. With her extraordinary talent in French related history, cooking and music and her vivacious personality she has increased enrollment in French classes and encouraged her students to become "contributing members of the community". Barbara's passion for language and for people led to her selection as New York State Teacher of the Year.

Cheryl Fries is the Director of the New York State Teacher of the Year Program. The New York State Teacher of the Year is chosen by a screening committee, which reviews all nominations and selects 10 semi-finalists. Five finalists are then chosen by a selection committee and interviewed prior to the final decision. Both the screening and selection committee decisions are made through a process that involves parents, students, teachers, administrators, community members and business representatives.

For further information on the New York Teacher of the Year program, the teacher of the year and the finalists, please contact Cheryl Fries, program coordinator, Bureau of Professional Career Opportunity Programs; The State Education Department at 518-474-5313 or you can email them at cfries@mail.nysed.gov.

On a more somber note, I would like to express my appreciation to John T. Dunleavy, the President and Chairperson of the Manhattan St. Patrick's Day Parade and Martin Ford, the President of the NYC District Council of Carpenters for their coming to the funeral mass for James Conway Sullivan at St. Francis de Sales. Jimmy Sullivan worked with these outstanding men to promote the cause of peace and justice in Ireland. Thanks also go to the many other dignitaries, elected officials and friends who came to show respect for the work of James Conway Sullivan.

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