Donna Zucca (Elementary Education PreK-6: Math) and her sister Diana Zucca, have a longstanding relationship with SUNY New Paltz. As an alumna and donor, Donna celebrated her 55th class reunion at a luncheon during the 2018 New Paltz Alumni Weekend. She taught for 33 years in Kingston, N.Y., and has been retired for the past 22 years. Donna and Diana generously established an endowed scholarship in 2014 that helps students pursue a degree in education. Donna fondly reflects on her own teaching experience and the ability to provide future educators with the same opportunity is “a joy that still brings to me today.”
Judi (Jacobs) Rosenzweig (Elementary Education N-6: Sociology) proudly reports that she celebrated her 50th wedding anniversary in January 2019. She writes “I met Elliot Rosenzweig on Sept. 28, 1966, at a dance at Parker Dining Hall. I still keep in touch with, and visit, my freshman year roommate, from 309 Bliss Hall, Carol (Laube) Mulcrone ’70 (Sociology). I was a Jewish educator for 40 years with two sons and daughters-in-law, and five grandchildren. Elliot and I make time each month to go from our home on Long Island to St. Louis and also to D.C. We love Jones Beach and our full and active lives. Life is good and we are truly blessed.”
Otto Naumann (Art History) joined the Sotheby’s Old Master Department in New York as the senior vice president and client development director.
Harry Orlyk (Visual Arts) has painted nearly every day for 38 years since settling in Salem, N.Y., where he and his wife raised four children. Orlyk started his painting career 50 years ago in New Paltz. He studied extensively with Ben Bishop. He and his wife met in Bishop's painting class in 1968. He went on to get an MFA from the University of Nebraska/Lincoln before returning to the East Coast to settle in Salem, Mass.
Joan (Rosenthal) Sterling (Visual Arts Education) is an artist married to Steven Sterling ‘72 (Economics). They live in Farmington Hills, Mich. Now retired from teaching art to elementary school children, Joan remains an avid painter, selling work through her website squareup.com/store/JoanofArt, where she’s known as Joan of Art.
Janis (Riback) Strasser (Early Childhood Education) is the co-author of "Big Questions for Young Minds: Extending Children’s Thinking." This bestseller, published by the National Association for the Education of Young Children in 2017, has now been translated into Mandarin. It is also popular in Europe and the Middle East. The book explores how asking rich, thoughtful questions can spark young children's natural curiosity and illuminate a whole new world of possibility and insight. But what are big questions, and how do they encourage children to think deeply? Dr. Strasser has recently retired as professor of early childhood from William Paterson University. She is currently working with early childhood teachers in Anguilla, a British overseas territory.
Linda (Wolchik) Sturges (Mathematics) was appointed vice provost for institutional assessment at SUNY Maritime.
Laurence Rubin (Sociology) just celebrated a 40th wedding anniversary with Debra Chernoff. He proudly reports “I did not meet her at New Paltz, but I met her through my New Paltz friend, Patty Kowalok Rosen.”
Robert Jackson (Sociology) was elected to New York State Senate District 31. Robert won the general election on Nov. 6, 2018, after advancing from the primary on Sept.13, 2018. He also ran in the 2018 election as a Working Families Party candidate.
Richard Scheinberg (Psychology) of Islip was recently inducted into the West Babylon Hall of Fame by the West Babylon Alumni Foundation. He is the founder and director of Sunrise Counseling Center in East Islip and has spent the past 37 years helping countless Long Island families in crisis. Over 4,000 individuals, couples and families are served each month. In 2012, Sunrise Counseling Center was recognized as best agency in all of New York State by the New York State chapter of the National Association of Social Workers. Over the years, Scheinberg has received numerous citations, certificates of appreciation and special recognition from many government agencies. Scheinberg is also the author of two critically-acclaimed mental health books.
Donise English (Art History) recently received a fellowship from New York Foundation for the Arts (NYFA). English is a painter, professor of studio art and chairwoman of the Department of Art and Digital Media at Marist College in Poughkeepsie, N.Y. Her work was presented in 2018 as part of a group exhibition, JuxtaPositions, which was featured at the Painting Center in Manhattan. During the summertime, she gets the opportunity to oversee an interior design program at Marist’s campus in Florence, Italy. This allows her to explore her love of architecture and art history, the latter of which was her major at SUNY New Paltz. English is especially honored to have been recognized among a group of 89 artists from an applicant pool of more than 3,000, working in a variety of fields, from writing to film. Many of these artists work and live in New York City, but English said she loves being an artist working 90 miles outside of the city.
Stuart Garber (Biology) has recently launched a new line of effective, all natural, side-effect-free remedies for pets, Maxwell Pet by Dr. Garbers. The remedies are an offshoot of his human line, Dr. Garber’s Natural Solutions. He is also working on developing new formulas for equine specific problems. A pilot study run by veterinarians in New Mexico and Texas is showing positive results for helping relieve a debilitating hoof disease, navicular syndrome. He moved to Santa Fe, N.M., in 2016 after almost 40 years of living and working with human patients in Southern California. He let go his human practice to heal horses and dogs. He has been back to school and at 63, just finished a course on Animal Chiropractic. He will use his new knowledge to help create new specific remedies for animals. He and his wife, Helen Kolikow Garber ’76 (Theatre Arts), now live on a ranch in Santa Fe, N.M., with two Tennessee walking horses and three springer spaniels.
Wendy Levine (Journalism) recently published, "Butterflies are Free, What about Me: One Woman’s Battle with Anorexia Nervosa." The book is comprised of short scenarios relating how innocent actions and words by others contributed to her development of anorexia nervosa as a way of life. Also included are poignant writings she penned over 30 years ago while hospitalized in an eating disorder unit of a general hospital as well as those from seven years ago while in a local treatment center. Levine says, “It is my hope that my personal story and struggle with anorexia nervosa will educate, motivate and encourage others who are currently fighting an eating disorder.”
Elliot Aronov (Geography) E.S. Max Aronov is pleased to announce the publication of his short story, “Abby at the Beach,” in the 2018 edition of "So It Goes," the annual literary journal of the Kurt Vonnegut Museum and Library.
Michael Manspeizer (Political Science) is a project manager for Cisco Systems. He and his wife recently moved to Wake Forest, N.C. They have two daughters. One recently graduated from Oneonta with a degree in anthropology and the other a rising sophomore also at Oneonta. He still loves weightlifting and sailing.
Julie Gerstman (Chemistry) has written a novel about the trials and tribulations of changing dietary habits in her novel "A Drink of Green," set in New Paltz and Amherst, Mass. Written under the pseudonym Leah Rose, "A Drink of Green" was inspired by the true story of a pancreatic cancer survivor who saved his life with a dietary change.
Elizabeth (Boiko) Burdick (Elementary Education N-6: Theatre Arts) ’93g (K-12: Reading) will retire from teaching after 31 years. She taught 2nd-5th grades and remedial reading for New Paltz Central Schools where she was best known for class plays and the annual murder mystery dinner fundraiser for the NPUT scholarship fund. She was also a Sunday school teacher at New Hurley Reformed Church in Wallkill where she produced Christmas pageants and other performances. Summers were spent acting or directing youth Shakespeare productions. Lizzy thoroughly enjoyed her college years and has fond memories of both her theater major and K-12 Literacy master. She also served as an education department adjunct and cooperating teacher for SUNY New Paltz students. She ponders, “what’s next for Lizzy?” and reports, “yoga and naps, naps and yoga, then lunch, then we’ll talk.”
Scott Shannon (Communication Studies) reports, “It’s been a long time since I rock and rolled Bevier Hall. Recently became certified as an anger and stress management specialist to go with my Integrative Life Coaching certification (see Scott Michael Shannon on LinkedIn.com). Still making music, under the stage name Spyder Darling (see Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn). Keep calm and rock on.”
Michelle (Rosenholtz) Fischgrund (Music Therapy) has been an early intervention service coordinator for Nassau County, N.Y., for the past 13 years.
Yvette Florio-Lane (Anthropology) recently published a book, "Shrimp: A Global History," part of "The Edible Series" by Reaktion Books, London, United Kingdom.
Darlene (Pelton) Siracusano (Visual Arts Education) received the “Teacher of The Year Award” from ESBOCES. She has dedicated 32 years of service as an art teacher for students with special needs. This award is selected by a panel of her peers and is the first time an art teacher has been chosen in the history of the award. Darlene retired in March 2019.
Linda (Wisner) Trocine (Mathematics) reports that she transitioned from her professional roles as an assistant professor with Embry Riddle Aeronautical University and senior scientist in the Discrete Event Modeling & Analysis Center at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center to a rewarding new career as the owner of a real estate business. Her successful real estate business in Central Florida helps dozens of families buy and sell properties. She’s been happily married for 26 years and has two fascinating young adult children. Linda earned her Ph.D. in industrial engineering from the University of Central Florida in 2001.
Edward Pittman (Humanistic-Multicultural Education) has been appointed senior associate dean of the College for Professional Development at Vassar College. He most recently was associate dean of the College for Campus Life and Diversity at Vassar. Pittman earned a Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania.
Helen Yang (Educational Administration) was featured in Professional Woman’s Magazine, fall 2018, for her nearly 30-year career at the New York Power Authority (NYPA) to inspire women to pursue opportunities in energy. She is the senior director of information technology business transformation where she leverages technology to improve the organization, and helps develop and execute the strategic plan and budget.
David Gillikin (Geology) was promoted this past year to full professor of geology at Union College, and was also elected fellow by the Geological Society of America.
Lawrence Rogowsky (Theatre Arts) currently is the producer of the hit Off-Broadway show, "The Other Josh Cohen," a new musical playing at the Westside Theatre, in New York City. More information can be found at www.otherjoshcohen.com. Upcoming projects coming to Broadway are "Moulin Rouge" and "Jagged Little Pill."
Bryan Segall (Business Administration) was promoted to claims service vendor manager for Enterprise/Alamo/National Rent-A-Car, overseeing claims for North America and Puerto Rico.
Gregory Wing (Painting) ’97g (Educational Administration) is retiring after 28 years in public education. He began his career as an art teacher for the gifted and talented and then went on to become an elementary school principal. On June 30, 2019, Wing will complete his 16th year as the principal of Karigon Elementary, Shenendehowa CSD, Clifton Park, N.Y. In 2018, the Albany Business Review recognized Karigon Elementary as a top-10 ranked elementary school in the Capital Region. Previously, he served on the Open Space and Trails & Riverfront Committee for the Town of Clifton Park. He is currently a board member of the Albany Area Amateur Astronomers. Wing also earned an MFA in 1992 from the Milton Avery Graduate School of the Arts, Bard College. He has been married to Pier Wing for 29 years. They have three children, Ava, 28, Siri, 25 and Marcel, 21. He looks forward to continuing the activities of oil painting, astronomy and brewing beer at home.
Julie (Muller) Barone (Mathematics) recently joined the PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP as a tax associate.
David Shamoun (English) is vice president at Technico Marine Corporation, a family owned and operated, marine electrical supply outfit with offices and warehouses in Brooklyn, N.Y., and Houston, Texas. He is currently studying Early Childhood Education (Birth-Grade 2) specializing in children with disabilities at Touro College and University System - Brooklyn Campus, and will complete his master's degree in 2020. David is happily married to his childhood sweetheart, Janice Amador-Shamoun, a registered nurse at Mount Sinai Beth Israel. His daughter, Layla, now 16, is a percussionist for South Broward High School's Marching Bulldogs. His son Jayden is a freshman at SUNY New Paltz, residing in College Hall and majoring in Music: Recording and Electronic Music.
Amanda (Kennedy) Newell (Communication) completed and passed South Carolina’s 18 month Certified Public Manager program in May 2018. She reports, “I earned my black belt in six sigma when I passed the ASQ Certified Six Sigma Black Belt exam in January 2019. I was promoted to Audit Manager 2 with South Carolina State Auditors office in January 2019.”
Kathleen Sickles (Elementary Education Pre K-6: English) ’08g (Childhood Education) has been hired as the new principal at Crosby Elementary School in Kingston, N.Y. Previously, Sickles served as an assistant principal at Highland Elementary School. Before that, she worked as an assistant principal and third-grade teacher at St. Joseph School in Kingston.
Brianna Titone was recently elected to the Colorado General Assembly in District 27. She writes “I am the first openly transgender person to be elected to the Colorado General Assembly and the 4th to be elected to a state office in the country.”
John McHugh (CPA Accounting) was appointed executive director for the Arc of Putnam. Previously, McHugh served as the executive director of The Arc of Ulster-Greene.
Lisa Cohen (Elementary Education Pre K-6: Art History) and husband Jonathan Cohen, married April 29, 2016, welcomed their first child, daughter Arielle Lauren on May 11, 2017.
James Perry (English) ‘07g (English) ’16g (Computer Science) relaunched his full-time illusionist/magician show last year and has since traveled over 18,000 miles throughout seven states to perform.
Donna Trainer (Journalism) recently accepted a position as a medical care coordinator at Presbyterian Health Plan, a Managed Care Organization in Santa Fe, N.M., where she has resided for the past five years. In her spare time, she can be found climbing mountains in the foothills of the Rockies and moonlighting as a performer in Partizani Brass Band; a 20-piece New Orleans second line style street band. She misses the Hudson Valley dearly.
Brad Hillman (Accounting) has been appointed by the Connecticut Society of Certified Public Accountants to serve as a member-at-large of its advisory council for the organization’s 2018-2019 activity year. Hillman, currently controller of Global Steering Systems, serves as a co-chair of the CTCPA CFO/Controller Roundtable.
Valerie Tremblay (Communication Media) ’10g (Humanistic-Multicultural Education) returned to SUNY New Paltz in March 2018, as the director of the Center for Student Media. She reports that she is thrilled to be giving back to the community that provided her with the foundation for her career in media and excited to be back in the Hudson Valley.
Adam Esrig (International Relations) is happily married and recently welcomed a son, Rahm Theodore Esrig, to the world Jan. 18, 2018. Esrig reports “[Rahm] has already been to the Main Street Bistro.”
Laura Brennan Sosis (Childhood Education) ’08g (Special Education) and Jeffrey Sosis ’06 (Accounting), along with big brother Leo, are proud to announce the birth of their son, Cole Michael Sosis, on May 17, 2018.
Dominique Fields (Adolescence Education: Spanish) ’09g (Adolescence Education: Spanish) has been teaching for the past 11 years. She started off teaching Spanish and now teaches English as a New Language. She self-published a young adult novel, "Slowbomb," about two disadvantaged teens and the choices they make and also blogs about her travels on “NeeNeeAroundTheWorld.”
Haifa Mahabir (English) ’12 (Political Science) was named a 2018 NYSCA/NYFA Artist Fellow in Fiction from The New York Foundation for the Arts.
Sarah (LaBlond) Pfeffer (Communication Studies) is excited to report that she has begun teaching as an adjunct instructor in the School of Communication & Media Arts at Sacred Heart University. Pfeffer also works as a freelance public relations writer, and is teaching faculty at South Kent School. In addition, she and her husband Max are proud to announce the birth of their daughter, Gwenevere Amelia Pfeffer on May 1, 2018. Says Pfeffer, “She is the joy of our lives and we have been soaking in every moment of this summer with her.”
Erica Wagner (Humanistic-Multicultural Education) was elected president of the Board of Directors for UlsterCorps in April 2018, an organization dedicated to fostering a culture of volunteerism, collaborative work and community service in Ulster County.
Tyler Terlecky (Communication Studies) ’11g (Business Administration) married Kaitlyn Regan ’09 (Communication Disorders) in April 2018. He reports, “we had an amazing wedding at Eagle Oaks Country Club in Farmingdale, N.Y."
Nicole Sarcone (Childhood Education 1-6: Social Studies - History) has been hired as the new head coach for women’s basketball at the College of Staten Island Athletics Department. Previously, Sarcone spent the last two years at Staten Island Academy High School.
Daniel Glass (Psychology) is happy to announce the upcoming launch of PsychTable.org, a mass-collaborative, open-science digital research tool and taxonomy of the human mind.
John Pavlakis (Biology) has been hired as a practitioner at Raynor Dental practice in Keene, N.H. Previously, Pavlakis completed several dental missions abroad.
Shannon Fabiani (Psychology) accepted a position as water and ecology specialist with Cornell Cooperative Extension in Onondaga County, Syracuse, N.Y. Previously, Fabiani served on the steering committee for NYSDEC HAB action plans under Governor Andrew Cuomo’s initiative to combat harmful algal blooms across New York State.
Max Benezra (Psychology) graduated from Columbia University in spring 2018 with dual master's degrees in counseling psychology. He began a psychotherapist position in a Long Island private practice in the fall.
Dylan Tuozzo (Biology) has accepted a position as a physician assistant with the Carolina Health Care System in Emergency Medicine at Pineville Hospital, Charlotte, N.C.
Caleb Treadwell (Geography) has been hired as the new Wesleyan University Assistant Swimming Coach.