On Sunday, September 20 the Intrepid hosted the 4th annual “Hometown Heroes Day”, which featured the presentation of awards to local residents who have performed outstanding community service.
The nomination process began in June and the winners were honored in a ceremony on the Flight Deck emceed by WABC Eyewitness News meteorologist Jeff Smith. They were each presented with a gift bag, provided by Old Navy, Woodbury Commons Premium Outlets and J&R Music World and a piece of original Intrepid Flight Deck Wood.
The winners announced in the four categories for the Hometown Hero Awards were:
Community Service Award
For someone who, on a volunteer basis, has performed outstanding community service on behalf of the community in which he or she lives.
Winner: Emily Engel – Plainview, NY
Worked on developing the Trauma Response Team of the CW Post Doctorial Program in Clinical Psychology…Played key role in recruiting over 30 graduate students for program…Key contributor during a community crisis response by the Team following a tragedy that resulted in four deaths…Instrumental in recruiting graduate students for the opportunity to become volunteer American Red Cross Disaster Mental Health Responders…Has done voluntary clinical work with families of 9/11 First Responders and Veterans.
For someone who has done an outstanding job mentoring/teaching/coaching youth in the community.
Winner: Stephen Ritz – Bronx, NY
Served as Educator in South Bronx for 12 years…Consistently generated 100% passing rates on NYS Regents Exams in Math and Science with some of the most challenging students in NYC…Personally sponsored and arranged scholarships for students…Facilitated monetary donations as well as hundreds of computers for South Bronx Youth…Founded Green Teen Program…Secured funding for over 2,200 local jobs in line with cultivating minds and harvesting hope.
A video clip of Stephen in action follows.
Youth Community Service Award
For the 17 year old or younger student who made an outstanding contribution to the community through volunteerism or acts of kindness or bravery.
Winner: Edward Maddalena – Brooklyn, NY
16 year old high School Senior and Honor Student…Active in band and sports…Decided in May to fulfill requirements to be an Eagle Scout…Organized Environmental Awareness Fair held May 9, 2009…Over 15 groups attended including Department of Environmental Conservation, Clean Air NY, the Center for Urban Greenscaping, NY Park Rangers…Arranged for re-usable shopping bags to be donated to give to visitors in lieu of plastic bags.
Service Person Award
For any community service person (i.e. Police, Firefighter, EMS, etc.) who has consistently gone above and beyond the call of duty to help their local community.
Winner: Richard Ory – Groton, CT
First Class Aviation Warfare/Naval Air Crewman with over 12 years of active service to Navy…Currently assigned to Naval Health Clinic at Subase New London in Groton, CT as substance abuse rehabilitation counselor…Has facilitated counseling and care for Abuse Workshops, Outpatient , Intensive Treatment and Continuing Care Groups…Has volunteered personal time to children and parents of Dolphins Sports and Recreation as a T-Ball Clinic Coach and Head Soccer Coach…Serves on Advisory Panel Board of Balfour Beatty, a local housing community and is organizing a neighborhood watch and local events for residents…Has been involved with clean-up projects of CT Parks and Recreation…Has been recognized for community involvement by Norwich Rotary and Chamber of Commerce of Eastern CT.