Chamber of Commerce News Web Page 2004 Grand Island, NY, Chamber of Commerce Website
President James R. Sharpe, First Vice President Bev Kinney, Second Vice President Joanne Kud, Treasurer Judy Schmidt, Secretary Diane Thompson
2005 News 2003 News 2002 News 2001 News
Chamber Office: 1980 Whitehaven Road, Grand Island, NY 14072
Phone: (716)773-3651 Fax: (716)773-3316
This Chamber is organized for the purpose of advancing the economic, industrial, professional,
cultural and civic welfare of Grand Island; to encourage the growth of existing industries
and business, while giving all proper asssistance to any new firms or individuals seeking to
locate in Grand Island; to support all these activities believed to be beneficial to the
community and area, and in general to promote the welfare of all area citizens following always
those policies intended to accomplish the greatest good for the greatest number of people.
Brochures, Maps, Videos and Post Cards (viewed on opening page of website) available through the Chamber
Office. Feel free to email us and we will forward your request to the Chamber Office or call (716)773-3651.
Thank you for your interest in Grand Island.
New Chamber of Commerce President Beverly Kinney
The Grand Island Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors held its annual election of officers and members at a meeting on Tuesday, December 14, 2004. Beverly Kinney, of Carol Ann’s Hair Fashions was chosen to serve as president of the Board of Directors for 2005.
Others elected or re-elected are:
Joanne Kud - 1st Vice President
John Bonora - 2nd Vice President
Diane Thompson - Secretary
Judy Schmidt - Treasurer
New board members elected Tuesday are Angelo Grande and Anthony Brindisi. Continuing on the board are Dr. Sherry Bradford and Victor Gagliardi.
The newly elected officers and directors will be installed by Town Justice Sybil Kennedy Tuesday, January 18, 2005. More information about the Grand Island Chamber may be found at
www.gichamber.org or by calling (716) 773-3651.
Sponsors Of Chamber's Youth Ambassador Program Thanked - 2004
The Grand Island Chamber of Commerce greatly appreciates the following businesses and individuals for their sponsorship to its Youth Ambassador Program. Without their generosity the program could not be the success it has been to the Grand Island community: Gold Sponsors: Tom Roberts, Charles N. DeGlopper VFW Post #9249; Dr.
David Wright, DDS; Don Moran, WUTV Fox 29; Michelle Warmus, M&T Bank. Also
Fujisawa Healthcare, Inc.; Grand Island Town Supervisor Peter McMahon; Chamber President Jim Sharpe; Beverly Kinney, Chamber 1st Vice President/Carol
Ann's Hair Salon; Dick Crawford, Island Healthcare Devices. Silver Sponsor: Jim Janicki of Elderwood Healthcare; Mike Samland of HSBC Bank; Super Gas/Sunoco, Cannon Design, Sterling Fluid Systems. Bronze Sponsors: Dr. Thomas Ramming, Superintendent of Grand Island
Central Schools; Steve Morgan, Contour Financial Planning; First Niagara Bank, Buffalo Launch Club, Town of Grand Island
Highway Superintendent, Ray Dlugokinski. Platinum Sponsor: Grand Island Rod & Gun Club
Kari Tondera, a Grand Island High School senior and Michael LoFaso, an 11th grade student at Canisius High School, have been chosen Youth Ambassadors for 2004-05 by the Grand Island Chamber of Commerce.
Kari Tondera, a Grand Island resident her entire life, is active in many school organizations including treasurer for the Class of 2005 and Student Council. She participates in DECA, Interact and was inducted into the National Honor Society last spring. Along with extracurricular activities, Kari is a member of Concert Choir, Madrigals and is active with the spring musical. During her spare time, she volunteers weekly in the emergency room at Children’s Hospital of Buffalo and also tutors elementary aged children. She hopes to pursue a medical career and become a pediatrician. "She is very excited to have been chosen as the Youth Ambassador for Grand Island and is ready to take on the responsibilities and help build the Grand Island community," a spokesman for the Chamber said this week.
Mike LoFaso moved to Grand Island when he was four years old, attended Grand Island schools, Sidway, Huth Road and Veronica Connor Middle up until eighth grade. He received a great education and made many
close friends. For high school, Mike made a difficult decision to go
to Canisius. It was not easy for him to leave the Grand Island school system, however the decision has played out quite well for him thus far. He has enjoyed his experience at Canisius High School through the first two years, and is very fortunate to retain his ties on Grand Island. Although school is important to him, he tries to keep himself involved in other areas such as church and sports. At Canisius, his activities include soccer, basketball, and track. On Grand Island he is an active member of St. Stephen’s parish. As far as his future goals, he is uncertain as to where he would like to study, and what field he would like to enter. However, he hopes to exhaust several options in the near future in an attempt to steer himself in the right direction. According to Chamber officials, "Mike is equally excited to serve as Youth Ambassador for Grand Island Chamber of Commerce and is looking forward to participating in the upcoming community events."
Chamber 2nd Vice President and Committee Co-Chair Joanne Kud (left) and Chamber 1st Vice President and Committee Chair Beverly Kinney proudly show off the new Island maps.
The Grand Island Chamber of Commerce recently delivered new, updated street maps to local area businesses. The maps have a brand new look with new street names and subdivisions. Maps are available at the Chamber’s 24-hour literature rack at 1980 Whitehaven Road and there is no charge.
The Grand Island Chamber Map Committee Chairperson, Beverly Kinney and her committee made up of Joanne Kud, Judy Schmidt and Sue Hillock, extend their appreciation to the advertisers who have made this year's Grand Island map possible.
Two New Youth Ambassadors Chosen For 2004-05 - 2004
Click photo for a larger view. October 2004. . . .Kari Tondera, a Grand Island High School senior (front left) and Michael LoFaso, an 11th grade student at Canisius High School, have been chosen the Youth Ambassadors for 2004-05 by the Grand Island Chamber of Commerce. Also shown (back) are Youth Ambassador Chair and Chamber 2nd Vice President Joanne Kud, Chamber President Jim Sharpe and First Vice President Beverly Kinney. Kari and Michael will represent the Chamber and the Grand Island community at various events and functions throughout the coming year.
The Grand Island Chamber of Commerce has selected the five semi-finalists for the Grand Island Chamber of Commerce Youth Ambassador Program. Two Youth Ambassadors will be chosen from the five semi-finalists.
Pictured from left are Chamber President James Sharpe, Katherine Gibas, Gretchen Kiehl, Adrienne LaLiberty, Kari Tondera, and Michael LoFaso.
Chamber Seeks New Youth Ambassadors - Application Deadline Extended - 2004
The Grand Island Chamber of Commerce Youth Ambassador committee is seeking candidates for the position for the coming year. The Youth Ambassador Program promotes interaction and goodwill between local students and the Island's business community, and is designed to recognize the youth of this area. Two Youth Ambassadors will be chosen to represent Grand Island at town and school functions, and community and business events. The program, in its 10th year, is open to all Grand Island students in grades 10, 11 and 12 attending high school on/or off the Island, for the 2004-2005 school year. The Grand Island Chamber of Commerce is most grateful for the contributions received so far from HSBC Bank, First Niagara Bank, Town of Grand Island, Buffalo Launch Club, Beverly Kinney of Carol Ann’s Hair Fashions, Grand Island Rod & Gun Club, Elderwood Health Care at Riverwood, Cannon Design, Steve and Amy Morgan of Contour Financial Planning, and Superintendent of Grand Island Central School District Dr. Thomas Ramming. The scholarship applications are available at the Grand Island High School Guidance Office and the Chamber of Commerce, 1980 Whitehaven Road, 773-3651.
All completed applications must be submitted to the Chamber Office by Thursday, October 7, 2004. The date for submission has been changed from Sept. 29th to Thursday, October 7th.
Shown from (left) Chamber 1st Vice President Beverly Kinney, Chamber President Jim Sharpe, 2003-2004 Youth Ambassador Kelly Knab, 2003-2004 Youth Ambassador Carly Jo Hudson and Chamber 2nd Vice President and Youth Ambassador Chairperson, Joanne Kud.
Area business members had a chance to bid farewell to outgoing Youth Ambassadors, Carly Jo Hudson and Kelly Knab, at the Grand Island Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors summer outing, which was held on the Grand Lady Cruise Boat. Both young ladies will soon be leaving for college. Carly Jo will be attending SUNY at Brockport, and Kelly will be going to Syracuse University. Since both colleges are in close proximity to one another, they plan on keeping up the close relationship that they have established.
Selection for the 2004-2005 Youth Ambassador is now in progress. Grand Island residents who will be attending 10th, 11th, or 12th grades in September are eligible to participate. Applications will be distributed by each grade’s homeroom teachers. Applications will also be available at the Chamber of Commerce office, 1980 Whitehaven Road, or at the Guidance Office at Grand Island High School. Two Youth Ambassadors will be chosen this year. Each will be awarded a scholarship thanks to contributions from local businesses.
The two winners will represent the youth of Grand Island at special town, school and Chamber events. All completed applications must be received by the Chamber of Commerce by Wednesday, September 29, 2004. For further information, contact Joanne Kud at the Chamber of Commerce Office, 773-3651.
Cynthia H. Czapla was selected as this year’s recipient of the Grand Island Chamber of Commerce Annual Academic Scholarship Award, presented at the Chamber’s July 20th,2004 Board of Directors meeting at the Holiday Inn Grand Island. Cynthia’s parents, James and Helen Czapla, her sister, Anna, and Schools Superintendent Dr. Thomas Ramming were in attendance.
Selected for her many academic achievements, Cynthia is ranked 2nd in her graduating class, earned an academic certificate, bar and letter each year and was inducted into the National Honor Society. She was honored as Rotary Student of the Month and Outstanding Female at Russell Sage College.
The Chamber chooses a student who demonstrates a degree of commitment to community service and extra curricular activities. Cynthia was a member of the DECA Club, Students Against Drunk Driving where she served as president, member of the Library Club also serving as its president, and the Interact Club where she held the office of Secretary.
She actively participated in Youth Court all through high school where she held the position of presiding judge. She was a member of Mock Trial where she held the positions of secretary, captain and lawyer and received the award as Most Valuable Player.
Cynthia was captain of the Girls’ Varsity Tennis Team and was named Most Improved Player, receiving a varsity letter and Viking Award. She was a volunteer for Kid’s Vote, the Buffalo Museum of Science and St. Stephen’s Church.
She plans to attend the University of Rochester in the fall where she plans on majoring in Bio-Medical Engineering.
Click each smaller photo for a larger view.
(left) Randy and Lauren Rogoza sell all kinds of patriotic items to customers preparing for the 4th of July celebration. (right) Jonathan Grenda has a great selection of handmade magnets including picture frames and thermometers.
Click photos for a larger view.
The Grand Island Chamber of Commerce' 8th annual KidBiz Sale was a huge success with over 100 kids setting up shop on the grounds of TOPS Friendly Market. Pictured with the young entrepreneurs are KidBiz Sponsor Angelo Grande, Erie County Legislator Chuck Swanick, KidBiz Trainer Mike Heftka, and Chamber President Jim Sharpe.
KidBiz participants for 2004 include Alyssa Accardo, Sarah Ali, Kassie Bennett, Maura Bobak, Casey, Connor and Elaina Bolles, Dallas and Rhianna Broady, Victoria Lynne Cacciatore, Justine Call, Darnell and Stephanie Cleveland, Eric and Sarah Colon, Dominique DeGregoria, Jacquelyn DiMaura, Aubrie DiTullio, Kara Dudley, Sara Dzielski, Joshua Edwards, Kearney and Keelan Erhard, Elizabeth and Hillary Figler, Lauren Fonte, Korin Frantz, Josh Fry, Clark and Craig Fusco, Emma, Kate and Sean Garten, Rebecca Gasiorek, Josh Gebhart, Jonathan and Benjamin Goc, Sara Grana, Alex and Anthony Grande, Jonathan Grenda, Chelsea Hall, Emily and Eric Harnden, Adam and Amanda Heftka, Alex Howard, Lauren and Ryan Kissel, Meghan Kossow, Taylor Kozlowski, Jeff and Mitchell LaRiviere, Isaac Lewis, Amanda Lore, Michaela and Tommy McDonald, Shannon McDonough, Kyle Thomas Meyer, John and Lindsay Morano, Dominic and Ally Morell, Kailah and Steven Moss, Andrea and Gregory Nicolia, Samatha Oriani, Matthew Osinski, Callan Piazza, Jack Pilie, Zachery Reese, Randy and Lauren Rogoza, Marina and Nikki Scerra, Lauren Shepard, Dominique Simmons, Glenn Skelly, Ben and Molly Smith, Natalie Soldwich, Jackie Sosnowski, Jessica and Amber Spiesz, Mitchell Stessing, Nicolle Stewart, Taylor Sweet, Melanie and Ryan Thomason, Patrick Thompson, Joshua Tixier, Joey Torregrossa, Nathalie Winder, Emily Wynne, and Molly Wynne.
Island Happenings- Saturday, June 26, 2004
The Grand Island Chamber of Commerce will host Island Happenings this Saturday, June 26, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the TOPS Market parking lot.
Participating in this year’s event are: Genesis Embroidery, Grinder’s Skatepark, Realty USA, Holiday Inn, First Niagara Bank, Contour Financial, David Homes, Quiznos, Meaghan’s Miracle, Discovery Toys, Mary Kay Cosmetics, Safe America, GIFTS, Grand Island Youth Ambassador, Technology Camp of America, US Border Patrol, Tasteful Sample, Scrap-It-Up, Seen & Be Seen, Car Safety Seat Demo, Watches & Figurines, Kids Books, Chicken & Ribs, along with tables of Arts & Crafts and Flea Market items.
Charles M. Swanick and the Erie County Legislature purchased t-shirts for all the young entrepreneurs participating in the 8th annual KidBiz Sidewalk Sale. This year’s event will be held Saturday, June 26, 2004 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. and located in the Tops Market parking lot as part of the many activities planned for the Grand Island Chamber of Commerce “Island Happening.”
KidBiz was developed by the Small Business Development Center and designed to give children in the third through sixth grade the experience and excitement of running their own business. KidBiz training was held at the Grand Island Memorial Library where they learned various aspects of running a business from KidBiz Trainer Mike Heftka.
Over 100 children will be participating in this year’s event. KidBiz is sponsored by Technology Camp of America and the Grand Island Chamber of Commerce.
Technology Camp Of America Sponsors KidBiz - 2004
The Grand Island Chamber of Commerce is proud to announce that "Technology Camp Of America" has signed on as sponsor of the 8th annual KidBiz Sidewalk Sale. Grand Island's newest business, located at 2090 Grand Island Blvd., is a summer camp for boys and girls ages 10-15. Some of the features of the camp include Lego Mindstorms Robotics, computer and Internet based projects, 3D computer software, friendly competitions, engineering & architectural principles based hands-on activities and more.
Instructor Angelo Grande, a certified technology educator, will be on hand at the KidBiz Sale this Saturday, June 26 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The sale will be held at TOPS Friendly Market along side of the Grand Island Chamber of Commerce Island Happenings.
Safety Exhibit At Island Happenings- 2004
The Grand Island Traffic Safety Advisory Board, chaired by Dorothy Bitner, will kick off an "Operation Be Seen" awareness drive at the Chamber of Commerce Island Happenings/Kid Biz, being held from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, June 26, 2004 in Tops Plaza.
The goal of "Operation Be Seen" is to make Island residents more aware of the hazards of not wearing light or reflective clothing while walking, skating, jogging, etc. on darkened roads.
A safety exhibit including posters and information will be a part of the Chamber of Commerce Island Happenings. Other exhibits will include those of the Erie County Sheriff's Department and the U.S. Border Patrol. Information will also be available from the Grand Island Citizens Corps Council.
KidBiz Sidewalk Sale Sat., June 26, 2004
The 8th annual KidBiz Sidewalk Sale, sponsored by the Grand Island Chamber of Commerce, will be held from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, June 26, 2004 in the Tops Market parking lot as part of the many activities planned for the Grand Island Chamber of Commerce “Island Happenings.”
KidBiz, developed by the Small Business Development Center at Buffalo State College and Forever Elmwood, was launched in 1996. Designed to give children in the third through sixth grades the experience and excitement of running their own business, KidBiz last year, drew over 60 young people who set up booths on the grounds of Tops Friendly Market and ran very success sales. This year's KidBiz is expected to be bigger yet.
Sue Hillock is chairman of KidBiz 2004 as she has been for several years.
Chamber, Business After Hours Offers Grand Lady Event - 2004
The Grand Island Chamber of Commerce and Business After Hours Networking Series will present a networking event from 6-8 p.m. Thursday, June 10, 2004 on the Grand Lady. The Grand Lady is located at the Holiday Inn Grand Island and boarding is at 5:30 p.m. The "adults only" event is being hosted by First Niagara Bank. Admission is free, however, reservations are necessary by calling the Chamber office, 773-3651. Hors d'oeuvres will be served and a cash bar will be available.
Youth Ambassador Hot Dog Sale - 2004
The Chamber of Commerce Youth Ambassadors will hold a hot dog sale in conjunction with Island Happenings/Kid Biz from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, June 26, 2004 in Tops Plaza. For a $2 donation, customers will not only receive a mouth-watering hot dog and refreshing beverage, but also an automatic entry in the Chamber of Commerce raffle. All proceeds will go toward the Chamber's Youth Ambassador Scholarship program. Winning raffle tickets will be drawn at the end of the day and it is not necessary to be present to win. Pre-sale tickets are currently being sold at the Chamber Office, 1980 Whitehaven Road, or may be purchased from any Chamber Director. Those interested in becoming a sponsor for this event or for further information, are asked call Joanne Kud at 773-9140 or the Chamber Office at 773-3651.
KidBiz Training To Be Held May 27 - 2004
The 8th annual KidBiz Sidewalk Sale will be held from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, June 26, 2004. in the Tops Market parking lot as part of the many activities planned for the Grand Island Chamber of Commerce “Island Happenings.”
KidBiz, developed by the Small Business Development Center at Buffalo State College and Forever Elmwood, was launched in 1996. It was designed to give children in the third through sixth grades the experience and excitement of running their own business.
KidBiz made its debut on Grand Island in 1997 as part of the “Plaza Happening”. Mike Heftka and Sue Hillock coordinated the event with over 30 children selling their products along the sidewalks under the canopy of the Grand Island Plaza. Articles sold included old books, toys, crafts, baked goods, and a whole lot more. The young business owners particularly got a sense of running a business as they had to pay a fifty cent rental space fee and received a “license” to sell at the site after the rent was paid.
Training for KidBiz will be held at the Grand Island Memorial Library from 5-6 p.m. Thursday, May 27, 2004. Young entrepreneurs will learn various aspects of running a business. Topics such as pricing, marketing and customer service are covered at the training event.
KidBiz is sponsored by the Grand Island Chamber of Commerce and is an excellent opportunity for children to engage in a real-life business experience. For more information call Sue Hillock at 773-6723 or the chamber office at 773-3651.
"Meet the Candidates Night" Monday, May 3 - 2004
A "Meet the Candidates Night" from 7-10 p.m. Monday, May 3, 2004 in the High School large cafeteria is being sponsored by the Grand Island Chamber of Commerce and co-sponsored by the Grand Island PTA Council. Those seeking re-election as school district trustees are Myrna Blair and Jeri Schopp. Other candidates running for the two (2) three-year terms and one (1) two-year term are Mike Dallessandro, George Casey and James Milne.
The community is urged to attend to learn more about the candidates, and be informed when going to the poles on May 18th.
April 8, 2004. . . Dr. Thomas Ramming, Superintendent of Grand Island schools, is scheduled to speak at the upcoming Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors meeting 7 p.m. Tuesday, April 20, 2004 at the Holiday Inn Grand Island.
Dr. Ramming will discuss the proposed 2004-05 school budget, carrying an estimated tax rate increase of approximately 9%.
Discussion will touch on the positive impact that existing, expanding & new businesses have on the community by increasing the tax base and defraying the cost of education for the residents of Grand Island.
President Jim Sharpe said, “If anyone is going to attend a chamber board meeting this year, this is the one they want to be present at.”
Business owners as well as the public are welcome to attend.
Chamber And Friends Honor 2003 Citizens Of Year - 2004
Click photo for a larger view. April 2004. . . .The Grand Island Chamber of Commerce Citizen of the Year dinner on Thursday evening, April 1 in the Holiday Inn, drew a full house of family and friends of those chosen to be in the spotlight as citizens of the year for 2003. Shown from left are the 2003 honorees: Paul &
Tammy Irving - Business Persons; Bobbi Frisoni - Educator; Dorothy
Blakelock - Senior Citizen; Billy Fuccillo, Fuccillo Automotive Group -
Business; Mike Cutini, VFW Post - Organization; Dr. David Johnson -
Civic. Scroll down for raffle winners.
Cruise winners Fran & Michael Dlugosz pose with Scholarship Chairman Joanne Kud and 1st VP Bev Kinney; (right) Youth Ambassador Carly Jo Hudson and Vice Youth Ambassador
Kelly Knab participated in the Citizen of the Year event by doing a
great job selling raffle tickets for the Scholarship Program.
A Seven-Day Cruise for Two from Holland America was the grand prize raffled at this year’s annual Grand Island Chamber Of Commerce Citizen of the Year Awards dinner on April 1, 2004 at the Holiday Inn Grand Island. The winning ticket was purchased by Michael and Fran Dlugosz who plan on traveling to the Caribbean on their cruise. Twelve additional prizes were also given away. Proceeds from this raffle with benefit the Chamber's Scholarship Fund for area graduating students. The Scholarship Committee is most appreciative of all the sponsors who generously donated prizes for this event. Prize winners follow:
Jacquie Kud - Downtown Buffalo Getaway
Bonnie Bolea - Cleveland Getaway
J. Barlow - Grand Island Getaway
Bernadette Kasprzak - Jamestown Getaway
Cindy Kaiser - Niagara Falls Getaway
Scott Swagler - Shaw Festival Tickets
Dick Crawford - Stratford Tickets
Pat Patterson - Coffeemaker
Mike George - Portable CD Player
Jim Sharpe - Entertainment Package
John Lexo - Island Fitness Ctr. 3 mo. membership
Andy Beyer - BAC 3 month membership
This year the Grand Island Chamber of Commerce has chosen Dr. David Johnson as Citizen of the Year in the Civic category.
Raised in Jamestown, NY, David Johnson began his medical education in Italy, and graduated from the New York Medical College in 1976. After a one-year internship at St. Vincent’s Hospital in New York, David worked for two years as a member of the U.S. Public Health Service bringing medical care to the Ojibwa (Chippewa) Native Americans in Red Lake, Minnesota.
David has lived on Grand Island since 1979. He has been practicing medicine in Kenmore, New York since completing a Family Practice residency in Buffalo. His wife, Patty, recently retired as a cancer research scientist at Roswell Park Cancer Institute. Their oldest son, Damien, is teaching English-as-a-Second Language in Taiwan. He and his fiancee, Erica, will be married in September. Their second son, Tullis, has a degree in Fine Arts from SUNY/Buffalo, and will pursue a post-graduate degree in Art/Art Education. Lukas, the youngest, is in his senior year at Berklee College of Music in Boston, where he maintains an Honor Roll standing. All the boys are graduates of the Grand Island High School.
Soon after his arrival on Grand Island, David joined the Grand Island Volunteer Fire Company, and has served as one of its medical directors for over twenty years. When their sons were young he and his wife ran a Cub Scout Pack, and he was an assistant leader of Boy Scout Troop #630. He also helped coach the Grand Island Junior Vikings football team. His family attended Trinity United Methodist Church, and recently joined Riverside Salem UCC/DC. He has given presentations at both churches, and at a number of Rotary Clubs, concerning health care and poverty in developing nations.
David and two of his sons traveled to Nepal in 2000. While there, David noted the poor medical conditions available to many of the Nepalese people, especially those living outside the capital, Kathmandu. When he returned home he searched for a way to help. He joined the Rotary Club of Grand Island, and became affiliated with Himalayan Health Care, a registered non-profit, non-government organization (NGO) with offices in Kathmandu, Nepal and New York, NY.
Over $350,00 was raised, and a hospital has been built in Ilam, Nepal. The hospital will open on April 21, 2004, and will serve 300,000 people who previously had virtually no access to health care.
His latest pursuit, as part of the World Community Service committee, is to promote a program to help combat world poverty/HIV/AIDS through the cooperation of Rotary District 7090 and Rotary International. He is also working with the Health Minister of Nepal to develop fortification of basic foods, such as flour, salt, and sugar, to eliminate malnutrition because of nutrient deficiency like vitamin A, iron and iodine.
David says that an individual working alone has minimal opportunity to create social change. He has learned that by working in an organization such as Rotary one individual can make a difference. He is grateful to those in his life who have taught him the value of community service.
This year the Grand Island Chamber of Commerce has chosen Fuccillo Automotive Group as Business of the Year.
Billy Fuccillo purchased the Chevrolet franchise located on Grand Island in February 2000. At that time there were 18 employees and the dealership was selling 40-50 cars and trucks per month.
Today Fuccillo employs 80 full and part-time employees and sells on the average 250 vehicles every month, and in October 2003 sold 625 vehicles and was rated the #4 dealership in the entire United States.
Over the next several months Billy plans an aggressive expansion to include 5-6 additional dealerships and employ another 300 people.
Fuccillo is extremely community orientated, sponsoring many Grand Island functions including Keith’s Classic, Citizen of the Year, Corporate Bowl, several local sports teams, and beginning this spring, will offer scholarship monies to a Grand Island High School student athlete.
Others to be recognized for their contributions are Paul and Tammy Irving of Cataract Customhouse Brokerage and Grinders Skatepark - Business Persons; David N. Johnson M.D. - Civic; Bobbie Frisoni - Education; Charles N. DeGlopper VFW Post 9249 - Organization; and Dorothy Blakelock - Senior Citizen. Awardees will be honored at a dinner on Thursday, April 1, at the Holiday Inn Grand Island Resort and Conference Center. News 4 Weekend Wake-up Anchor Erika Brason will be the Master of Ceremonies and entertainment will be provided by Lake Effect. The Charles N. DeGlopper VFW Post 9249 will also play a special part in this community event.
Tickets are $37 per person and may be purchased at the chamber office located at 1980 Whitehaven Road. For more information call 773-3651.
This year the Grand Island Chamber of Commerce has chosen Dorothy Blakelock as Senior Citizen of the Year.
Kaegebein cook-manager Dorothy Blakelock has worked at the school for 42 years. Dorothy started as a dishwasher, working for just a couple of hours a day after her youngest son went to school. Working her way up to salads and sandwiches and then as assistant to Doris Kaiser, Dorothy took over as cook-manager over 25 years ago. Cooking turkey dinner and making homemade soups are favorite activities at Kaegebein for Dorothy. It brings in “lots of praise,” she says.
After growing up in Buffalo, she moved to Niagara Falls when first married to her husband, the late Bart Blakelock, and then to Grand Island in 1952. When she still had a houseful at home, she enjoyed making spaghetti, cheesecake and the weekly Sunday roast beef dinner. Dorothy has recently moved into an apartment near her daughter after 52 years in the home purchased when the family first moved to the Island. Dorothy and Bart raised three children on Grand Island and she now has seven grandchildren and two great-grandchildren to brag about. She says she has had a “good life, no regrets.”
Dorothy is an amazing 79-year-old and is very happy to be working at Kaegebein. In bed by nine most evenings, she is at work early to start her soups every day. Former Principal George Wenner, speaking during the Kaegebein School 50th Anniversary Assembly, honored Dorothy by saying he had learned a lot from her in their years together. Principal John Wiertel also dedicated the Kaegebein Cookbook, compiled in honor of the anniversary, to Dorothy. Mr. Wiertel said in part, “We would like to recognize the incomparable efforts put forth by Mrs. Dorothy Blakelock. Dorothy has personally nurtured everyone at Kaegebein over the past four decades. Dorothy is known for all of the love and care she adds to every delicious meal she prepares. Mrs. Blakelock is truly the grandmother of the Kaegebein School Family.” And she intends to continue doing so.
This year the Grand Island Chamber of Commerce has chosen Bobbie Frisoni as Educator of the Year.
Bobbie Frisoni has been a business teacher at Grand Island High School for the past 32 years. Miss Frisoni holds an Associate in Applied Science Degree in Executive Secretarial Science from Niagara County Community College, a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business and Economics from Daemen College, and a Master of Science Degree in Education from Niagara University.
In September of 2002 she became the Business Department Program Coordinator and has held this position since that date. Her primary goal in this capacity is to work closely with members of the department to develop and promote quality programs. By doing so, the Business Department will continue to be able to achieve and maintain standards of excellence in education which will result in our students being both professionally and personally successful in the work force or within an institute of higher learning.
In addition, Miss Frisoni is also the Grand Island Central School District’s School-to-Work Coordinator, a position she has held since 1999. As School-to-Work Coordinator, Miss Frisoni had been active in organizing the Grand Island High School Career Exploration Internship Program and the Shadow Day, Social Edge and Job Search Seminar programs. Through this program, she works closely with the Niagara Frontier Industry Education Council on the Business Education Employability Portfolio. Miss Frisoni has also served as the advisor of the award-winning Venture yearbook since 1995, where she was awarded the Herff Jones Advisor’s Gold Award in recognition for outstanding achievement and dedication as an advisor. She also served as co-advisor to the Class of 1993. She is on the Board of Directors of the Grand Island School Business Alliance (GISBA) and is involved in the Corporate Bowl. She works with Sidway Elementary School on their Kindergarten Orientation program and is very involved with the Make-a-Wish Foundation.
Miss Frisoni has been recognized in Who’s Who Among America’s Teachers, as a Celebration of Inspiration recipient, Business First Pathfinder, National Honor Society Honorary Member, recipient of the United States Air Force Recruiting Salute Plaque for her work with students facing career choices, New York Lottery Educator of the Week, and as a Sam’s Club Teacher of the Year.
Bobbie lives in Youngstown, New York with her two Labrador puppies, Duke and Sky.
Others recognized for their contributions are: Fuccillo Chevrolet - Business; David N. Johnson M.D. - Civic; Paul and Tammy Irving - Business Persons; Charles N. DeGlopper VFW Post 9249 - Organization; and Dorothy Blakelock - Senior Citizen.
Awardees will be honored at a dinner on Thursday, April 1, at the Holiday Inn Grand Island Resort and Conference Center.Tickets are $37 per person and can be purchased at the chamber office located at 1980 Whitehaven Road. For more information call 773-3651.
Charles N. DeGlopper Memorial VFW Post 9249 officers are (front left) Judge Advocate Joe Synakowski, Senior Vice Commander Wally Wigdorski, Commander Mike Cutini, Junior Vice Commander William (Kester) Bleich, and Chaplain Mike Rogan; (Back) Advocate Mike Coffman, Quartermaster Dan McMahon, Surgeon Jack Thompson, and Trustee Dave Clayton. Missing from the picture are Trustees Gerry Korzen and Jim Skindell.
The Grand Island Chamber of Commerce has chosen the Charles N. DeGlopper Memorial Post 9249 Veterans of Foreign Wars as Organization of the Year.
The Charles N. DeGlopper Memorial Post 9249 Veterans of Foreign Wars was chartered with 37 members by The United States Congress on the 6th day of August 1965. Today, the membership is over 300 members; combined with the Ladies and Men’s Auxiliaries the total membership is over 525.
As a community orientated organization, the VFW is involved in the events of many local and veterans organizations, with volunteer hours totaling over 4000 per year.
Some of the many organizations and events the Charles N. DeGlopper VFW Post 9249 has supported during the past year are The Ronald McDonald House, Grand Island High School Scholarship Fund, the high school basketball team, Teacher of the Year Award, Town Youth Court, and the Voice of Democracy Competition. The Island VFW has also supported the National Eagle Scout of the Year Scholarship competition, American Cancer Society, Organ Donation Program, Breast Cancer Research Society at Roswell Park, Make-A-Wish Foundation, Mercy Flight, Big Brothers and Big Sister, Erie County Stop DWI Program, Fire Prevention with the Grand Island Fire Company, Disabled Veterans, American Legion, Veterans Hospital, and the Veterans Volunteer Program at the VA.
The VFW Post is a pro-active organization constantly striving to better the Western New York community.
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This year the Grand Island Chamber of Commerce has chosen Paul and Tammy Irving, owners of Grinders Skatepark and Cataract Customhouse Brokerage, as Business Persons of the Year.
Paul, from LaSalle, and Tammy from Sloan, were married in 1988, moving their family (Shaughn 12, Mary 10) to Grand Island from Niagara Falls in 1993. Having established Cataract Customhouse in 1988, and maintaining offices at both the Lewiston Bridge and Peace Bridge, it was an easy decision for them to decide on Grand Island as their new home.
As the Customs Brokerage Import/Export business grew, it was necessary for them to find a “Main Office,” whereby several locations were looked at, but once again Grand Island was the choice. In 1997 they purchased the office building at 2094 Grand Island Blvd to set up shop. Currently, Cataract Customhouse Brokerage has 24 employees, eight of which work out of the Grand Island offices.
Their second business venture, Grinders Skatepark, started out as a simple project, but grew fast to become Western New York’s Premier Skateboard Park. Grinders also caters to Aggressive In-Line Skaters, and BMX Biking, but truly they have become known as the skateboard park of choice in WNY. All levels of skill are accommodated, and a comfortable, sheltered and relaxed atmosphere welcomes parents to hangout. Summer camps, concerts, competitions and other events draw athletes from across the USA and Canada to Grand Island.
Tammy is also a committed Room Mother at Kaegebein Elementary School, and is active in Girl Scout Troop 391, having coordinated the Cookie Sale for three years running. Paul took on the role of JV Hockey Coach last Season, and was promoted to Varsity Coach this season. As a family, they enjoy time on the river, biking, attending local shows and sporting events, spending time at the Skatepark, and those awesome sunsets on the West River.
Others recognized for their contributions are: Fuccillo Chevrolet - Business; David N. Johnson M.D. - Civic; Bobbie Frisoni - Education; Charles N. DeGlopper VFW Post 9249 - Organization; and Dorothy Blakelock - Senior Citizen.
Awardees will be honored at a dinner on Thursday, April 1, at the Holiday Inn Grand Island Resort and Conference Center. News 4 Weekend Wake-up Anchor Erika Brason will be the Master of Ceremonies and entertainment will be provided by Lake Effect. The Charles N. DeGlopper VFW Post 9249 will also play a special part in this community event.
Tickets are $37 per person and can be purchased at the chamber office located at 1980 Whitehaven Road. For more information call 773-3651.
Chamber Of Commerce Citizens of the Year - 2004
The Grand Island Chamber of Commerce is proud to announce its selection for the 38th annual Citizen of the Year Awards. Citizens who will be recognized for their contributions include
Fuccillo Chevrolet - Business
Paul and Tammy Irving of Cataract Customhouse Brokerage and Grinders Skatepark - Business Persons
David N. Johnson M.D. - Civic
Bobbie Frisoni - Education
Charles N. DeGlopper VFW Post 9249 - Organization
Dorothy Blakelock - Senior Citizen.
Awardees will be honored at a dinner on Thursday, April 1, 2004 at the Holiday Inn Grand Island Resort and Conference Center. News 4 Weekend Wake-up Anchor Erika Brason will be the Master of Ceremonies and entertainment will be provided by Lake Effect. The Charles N. DeGlopper VFW Post 9249 will also play a special part in this community event.
Cocktails and hors d’oeuvres will begin at 5:30 p.m. Dinner will be served at 6:30 p.m.
The menu follows:
Baby field greens with poached pear
Gorgonzola cheese and honey glazed pecans with honey red wine vinaigrette
Combination platter of horseradish encrusted tenderloin and balsamic grilled chicken with demi-glaze
Mushroom red potato with rosemary and garlic
Glazed carrots and baby green beans
Warm rolls and butter
Lemon sour crème cake with raspberries
Coffee and tea.
Platinum Sponsors for this year’s event are Fuccillo Chevrolet, Grand Island Holiday Inn, and Fujisawa Healthcare. Other sponsors include A.J.’s Heating and Air Conditioning (Gold), HSBC Bank (Gold), Niagara Frontier Publications (Gold), Invitrogen (Gold), Tops Market (Silver), and Metro Chubb (Silver). Bronze Sponsors include Realty USA, Sunoco Super Gas, First Niagara Bank, Keller Group, Rose Liquor Store, Charles N. DeGlopper VFW Post 9249, CIR Electric, Contour Financial Planning, American Pharmaceutical Partners, M&T Bank, Advantage Capital/Mary Kay Cosmetics, and Carol Ann’s Hair Fashions.
Tickets are $37 per person and can be purchased at the chamber office located at 1980 Whitehaven Road. For more information call 773-3651.
Gold Sponsor HSBC Bank USA - (right) Mike Samland with Chamber President James Sharpe.
Gold Sponsor Invitrogen-Gibco - (left) Bev Kinney, Vic Nole of Invitrogen-Gibco and Chamber 2nd VP Joanne Kud
Gold Sponsor Niagara Frontier Publications - (left) Citizen Co-Chair Sue
Hillock and Skip Mazenauer of NFP
Silver Sponsor Metro Chubb Real Estate - (left)
Bob McDonnell, Kathy Aronica, Floyd Doring, Barry Chubb and Mary Jane
Silver SponsorTops Markets - (left) Bev Kinney, Randy Taylor of Tops and Joanne Kud
Bronze sponsors: Dawn Bonora, Mary Kay Independent Sales Consultant; Dick Piechowiak, First Niagara Bank; Michelle Warmus, M&T Bank.
(left) Bronze Sponsors Mike Cutini, Charles DeGlopper Memorial VFW Post 9249; Ann Fahning, Realty USA; Steve Morgan, Contour Financial Planning, LLC).
Bronze Sponsors - (left) Corrine Simon, Super Gas/Sunoco; Mike Hachee, The Rose Liquor Store; Bev Kinney, Citizen of the Year Chairperson/Chamber 1st VP; (back) Greg Jakubowski, CIR Electrical; John Bonora, Advantage Capital
The Grand Island Chamber of Commerce annnounced its Bronze sponsors for the Citizen of the Year Dinner April 1, 2004 in the Holiday Inn Grand Island. Scroll down for complete dinner information.
Chamber Seeks Citizen of the Year Nominations - 2004
The Grand Island Chamber of Commerce Citizen of the Year Committee is asking the community to submit nominations for individuals, businesses and organizations deserving of the Chamber's annual Citizen of the Year award. Letters of nominations must be received by Friday, February 13, 2004. Categories for consideration include but are not limited to business, business person, corporation, civic, community service, education and senior citizen. Residents are encouraged to forward letters of nomination to the Grand Island Chamber of Commerce, 1980 Whitehaven Road, Grand Island, NY 14072.
The Chamber of Commerce will hold its annual Citizen of the Year Dinner, recognizing individuals, businesses and organizations, on Thursday, April 1, 2004 in the Holiday Inn, Grand Island.
Tickets for this year's Awards Banquet are $35 each. Click 38th Annual Awards Banquet for information on sponsorship, ads and dinner reservations.
The Chamber of Commerce will feature Erika Bason as this year’s Master of Ceremonies. Erika currently anchors "Weekend Wake-Up" on Saturday and Sunday, while doing general assignment reporting during the week.
Photo #1, (left) Chamber President Jim Sharpe, Citizen of the Year Chairperson Bev Kinney, and Dan Gilliland of Holiday Inn; #2 Tom Kanaley of Fuccillo Chevrolet and Chamber President Jim Sharpe; #3 Ms. Kinney, Scott Aladeen of Fujisawa Healthcare, Inc. and Mr. Sharpe
Grand Island Chamber of Commerce Photos January 29, 2004 . . .The Grand Island Chamber of Commerce is proud to announce that Fuccillo Chevrolet, Grand Island Holiday Inn Resort/Conference Center, and Fujisawa Healthcare have signed on as platinum sponsors for the 38th annual Citizen of the Year Award Banquet. This year's event will be held on Thursday, April 1, 2004 at the Grand Island Holiday Inn and will honor businesses and individuals whose contributions have made Grand Island a better place to live, work, and play. Master of Ceremonies for the prestigious event is WIVB-TV Weekend Wake-up Anchor Erika Brason.
Other sponsors include AJ’s Heating and Air Conditioning (Gold), HSBC Bank USA (Gold), Niagara Frontier Publications (Gold), Tops Market (Silver), Metro Chubb (Silver), and Bronze Sponsors Realty USA, Sunoco Super Gas, First Niagara Bank, Keller Group, Rose Liquor Store, Charles N. DeGlopper VFW Post 9249, CIR Electric, Buffalo Financial Associates, American Pharmaceutical Partners, M&T Bank, and Carol Ann’s Hair Fashions..
For more information on sponsoring this event or to nominate a business or individual please contact the chamber office at 773-3651.
Chamber President James Sharpe (left) is shown with former Youth Ambassador Robert Kujawa, Youth Ambassador Carly Jo Hudson, Vice Youth Ambassador Kelly Knab and Youth Chairperson/2nd VP Joanne Kud.
Newly selected Grand Island Youth Ambassadors for 2004 were installed at the Chamber of Commerce Christmas party held in the Holiday Inn Riverview Room. Former Youth Ambassador Robert Kujawa, took time off from studying for his finals at SUNY at Fredonia to officially pass the title to Carly Jo Hudson. Kelly Knab is this year's first runner-up. Carly and Kelly are seniors at Grand Island High School and look forward to an exciting year representing the youth of Grand Island in the business community.
Chamber Of Commerce Elects Officers - 2004
The Grand Island Chamber of Commerce re-elected two incumbents to the Board of Directors and three newly elected directors at its December 16, 2003 Christmas Party. Incumbent Dorothy Bitner, Traffic Safety Promotions and Incumbent Dawn Bonora, Mary Kay Independent Sales Consultant were re-elected. Allan Glessner of Cozy Landscaping, Tom Kanaley of Fuccillo Chevrolet and Steve Morgan were elected as new board directors. Officers remained the same. They are President James Sharpe of Sharpe Associates, First Vice President Bev Kinney of Carol Ann Hair Fashions; Second Vice President Joanne Kud of Holiday Inn, Treasurer Judy Schmidt of Thermo Mechanical Services, and Secretary Diane Thompson of Control Techniques.
Other directors include John Bonora, Advantage Capital; Dr. Sherry Bradford, Oncology Research Therapeutics; Dolly D’Orazio, Weekenders USA; Fran Davis, Tops Markets; Granson Geis, PLS; Skip Mazenauer, Niagara Frontier Publications; Richard Milkas, The Copy Cat Print; and Dick Piechowiak, First Niagara Bank.
The Chamber of Commerce will hold an installation of its board members 7 p.m. January 20, 2004 at the Holiday Inn Grand Island.
The Chamber looks forward to another productive year. Board meetings are open to all members and the general public at the Holiday Inn Grand Island at 7 p.m. on the third Tuesday of the month. "Please attend some of these meetings and show your support for the business community. We welcome all to assist our committees with various events we sponsor," a spokesman for the Chamber said this week. The Chamber office is open 8-4 p.m. daily, 773-3651.
If you are a member of this organization, we need your help. GIECOM.Net has partnered with the Connections program to help Grand Island as a community "Get it Together." Please visit our website G-I-Together.ORG and fill out our SURVEY. Every group on Grand Island will have its own FREE web page showing: meeting times and location, contact persons, your Mission Statement and a listing of events. We will also be linking your news events that appear in the local media and on IsledeGrande.Com, Grand Island's E-News Source, to your page, maintaining an archived journal of pictures and news. This is the perfect opportunity for your group to connect with potential new members and the community.