2005-03-04 / Columnists


By Joanie Omeste, Executive Director, Rockaway Chamber of Commerce

Joanie Omeste
Joanie Omeste On Tuesday, April 5 at 6:00 p.m. the Rockaway Chamber along with Rockaway Development and Revitalization Corp. will be holding an exciting and informative Business Card Exchange.

The New York City School Construction Authority, KeySpan, The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey and the MTA will speak about programs they have instituted which offer partnership and work opportunities to minority-owned, women-owned and locally based enterprises. We urge you to attend as they will guide you through the process of working with them and expanding your business. The Business Card Exchange will be held at Peninsula Hospital Center’s Meditation Room, 51-15 Beach Channel Drive, Far Rockaway. Admission is $10 and food will be served. If you have any questions, please call the Chamber office at (718) 634-1300 or RDRC (718) 327-5300.

The Annual Bravest and Finest Luncheon is set for Thursday, April 21st at 12:30pm. The prices have risen….since my last article as a matter of fact…$50 for advance payment, $60 at the door and $30 for FDNY, NYPD and EMS workers.

The firefighters being honored are an exhilarating group and have contributed above and beyond to serve this neighborhood well. From Ladder Company 121, Firefighter Craig Mosia , a member of E-265 for four years and a devoted firefighter and family man. On August 3, 2004, Firefighter Mosia was commended for his quick and brave work in pulling 13 year old Tab Miller from the waters of Jamaica Bay. Firefighter Mosia stripped down and plunged into the water to get the youth and pull him out of the water. From Engine Company 266 is Firefighter Leroy McGinnis , who has been proud to serve the Fire Department for almost 20 years and responded to both the World Trade Center and Belle Harbor Plane Crash. A Union Delegate for Engine Co. 266, he is always willing to help his “brothers” in any capacity possible. Honoree Firefighter Thomas Quinn from Ladder Company 137 has been protecting the City of New York in some capacity for the last 21 years. Most recently he transferred to B. 116th Street and became a member of L-137. Not only does he serve the fine Rockaway community but is also a resident with his wife and daughter. Tom realized quickly surf rescue was a unique aspect to working in the Rockaways. He spent many hours training to hone his surf rescue skills, and his efforts paid off on September 16, 2004. Reports of people drowning at Beach 123 rd Street came in and L-137 responded. Upon arrival they ascertained that two males were in the water and needed help. Tom immediately went into action and played an intricate part in rescuing both boys. Tom’s actions as well as the members of L-137 were in the truest tradition of the Fire Department. The officers and members of E-264, E-328 and L-134 have selected 24-year veteran Captain Richard McCluskey to represent the Big House. McCluskey has been Captain of the Big House for 3 years and is a long-time Rockaway resident. His dedication to the Fire Department has been demonstrated by numerous and varied courses and training programs he has participated in throughout his career. He is extremely involved in community affairs projects for the Rockaway Peninsula and is just an all around good guy.

This year Transit District 23 continued to reduce transit related crime and increase the safety of riders and the general public.

Another obligation of the Police Department is youth involvement, most notably served by introducing teens to a relationship with local police and guiding them on a path to successful integration into society. At Transit District 23 that role has been excellently performed by honoree Police Officer Glen Lewter . Police Officer Lewter is a tireless worker whose personal commitment to the Rockaway youth is unquestionable. PO Lewter imparts family values, respect and personal responsibility upon his charges. He has mentored many children who have gone on to secondary education and bright futures. Honorees for the 100th Precinct and the 101st Precinct soon to follow.

On Friday February 25, Councilman James Sanders welcomed a full crowd to The Beach Club for a kickoff meeting on the new Rockaway MapGuide. The Councilman, Rockaway Development and Revitalization Corp., Margert Community Corporation and the Rockaway Chamber are working together to publish an all inclusive map of the Rockaway Peninsula that residents, businesses and visitors will find extremely useful.

The map is being publishing by American Patriot and ads are currently being sold.

Please contact APP by calling (718) 233-2901.

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