Institute for Civic Engagement Director Mary McGuire opened the 12th annual Leadership in Civic Engagement Awards ceremony and reception by praising the breadth and scope of contributions made by the awards recipients. SUNY Cortland President Erik Bitterbaum and Cortland Mayor Brian Tobin echoed this sentiment in speeches to the audience of 180 people, commending the value of the volunteers’ work to the college and the local community.
Twenty-four SUNY Cortland students, twelve community members, three community groups, and six faculty and staff members received Leadership in Civic Engagement Awards. Also awarded were seven community service scholarships, two Donald M. Wilcox awards, and the Cortland Area Chapter of the Alumni Association’s Community Service Award. In addition, participants in the 2015-2016 Judson H. Taylor Leadership House program, Service-Learning Corps, and first-year learning communities were recognized with award certificates.
These college awards recognize exemplary service in support of community agencies, social change, and civic engagement by SUNY Cortland students, alumni, faculty and staff, and by Cortland community members.
Many students’ service included participating in local charitable fund-raising and awareness efforts, such as Relay for Life, Crop Walk, Suicide Prevention Walk, the Special Olympics, and tutoring at area schools and programs. The vast majority of activity supports Cortland County residents, the public school system, and numerous human service organizations.
Leadership in Civic Engagement student recipients were: Megan Astor, Danielle Bodnar, Taylor Cain, Alexandra Cicero, Austin Clock, Danielle Del Amo, Natalie DiMeglio, Allison Garver, Kelly Hunneyman, Ashley Jackson, Erica Lazarus, Deijana Lebron, Amber Lennon, Marisa Lobelson, Lauren Maitles, Breanna Murray, Kyra Newcombe, Lisbeth Ortiz, Riley Peterson, Kateri Ruebenstahl, Andrea Schoonmaker, Tamara Shannon, Amanda Sharpsteen, and Alexis Vilceus.
Faculty and Staff recipients were: AnnaMaria Cirrincione, Assistant Director, Multicultural Life and Diversity; Tony DeRado, Graphic Designer, Cheryl Hines, Coordinator of Student Outreach and Non-Traditional Student Support; Susan Stiner, Academic Advisor; Randi Storch, History Professor; and Deborah Van Langen, Assistant Professor, Kinesiology.
Community member recipients were: Doug Bentley, Quality Engineer (Retired) and Mentor; Libby Bolton, Physical Education Teacher, Ithaca Schools; Jennifer Geibel, Supervisor with YWCA’s Learning Adventure Childcare Center; Amy Hamilton, Senior Probation Officer, Cortland; Alison King, President League of Women Voters and a member of the Environmental Advisory Board; Sue Malmberg, Physical Education Teacher, Appleby Elementary School, Marathon; Dan Mullins, Cancer Support Group Leader (shown to right, receiving his award from President Bitterbaum); Brenda Nobles, Physical Education Teacher, Homer Schools; David Rutherford, Director, Cornell Cooperative Extension of Cortland County; Maureen White, Physical Education Teacher, Smith and Virgil Elementary Schools, Cortland; Ellen Wright, President, American Association of State Colleges and Universities, and Leah Torrey, BOCES student and advocate for people with disabilities. Ms. Torrey, who communicates with a speech-generating device, extended a special thank you for her award.
Seven students won scholarships that acknowledge outstanding commitment to community and exceptional academic achievement: Laura Barnstead, the BorgWarner Morse TEC Scholarship; Elise Konikoff, the Catherine McDermott Lavelle Scholarship for Student Leaders; Malorie Jones, Owen Parseghian, and Everett Phillips, James. H. Taylor Community Service Scholarship; April Appel, the Lambda Phi Delta Scholarship; and Emma Lang; the James H. and Dorothy A. Sarvay Scholarship. The scholarships were presented by Vice President of Institutional Advancement, Peter Perkins.
Candice Jaimungal was presented the Cortland Area Chapter of the Alumni Association’s Community Service Award by Maxine Cleveland, Alumni House Board Member.
Ms. Jaimungal was also awarded the Donald M. Wilcox Award, which recognizes outstanding participation in the fight against poverty and hunger. The Cortland Hunger Coalition was also awarded the Wilcox award for its work in helping to meet the challenges of poverty and hunger in Cortland County. The award was accepted by Coalition president, Lindy Glennon.
Lauren Carlson, Alexandra Cicero, and Ashley Evanchof were awarded the Peter F. Eisenhardt First-Year Learning Community Scholarships. Megan Astor, Elaina Batista, Andrew Busch, Danielle Charletta, Alexandra Cicero, Alexis Kane, Carly McUmber, Jessica Moore, and Madison Zizzi were awarded the Excellence in Service-Learning Award for their participation in the Service-Learning Corps.
Nine students were recognized with the Vanguard Leader Award in recognition of their participation in the Judson H. Taylor Leadership House: Xavier Campbell, Lucas Christodoulou, Brittnie Daugherty, Benjamin Hobbs, Candice Jaimungal, Oni Johnson-Hackle, Brian Kipp, Kenia Ozoria, and Toni Yancey. Also awarded but unable to attend were Shai’an Irving and Patrick Viscome.
The Leadership in Civic Engagement Awards and Scholarships event was sponsored by the college’s Institute for Civic Engagement, the Divisions of Academic Affairs, Student Affairs, and Institutional Advancement, as well as the Cortland Foundation and the Cortland Fund.