'Cause it matters
'Cause it matters

With Spring comes a number of “flings” – that means fundraisers. Many adopt causes. Some causes adopt others. Some come from relationships and involvements. Certainly explains mine.


I chair the Board of Directors on Services Now for Adult Persons (“SNAP” before the acronym had other worthy uses!). The Board’s biggest concern involves the completion of a new center to house several of our programs and offices, including a senior center serving four communities where I spent most of my life – Bellerose, Floral Park, Glen Oaks, New Hyde Park – and Queens Village. My affinity began when I joined my local Community Board 13 during law school and learned public funds to serve northern nabes of the board went to a site outside because no center existed within the community district. I recall raising the issue and Board Chair, to her credit, secured seed money to create SNAP. After law school I joined the staff of the local Council Member as counsel (for whom I also became chief of staff several months later), I worked to secure City support for the program which grew to serve more of our elders every year. When I left public service I joined SNAP’s board becoming board chair almost two years ago. Its big event – an Annual “Wine Down” – takes places as Summer winds down (September 20) (You can donate here.). Support and attendees welcome!


Through my involvement in the Fraternal Order Knights of Pythias, we get to support a number of causes supported by the Order, its New York Grand Lodge and my home lodge, FDR Lodge 613. We look forward to a Radio Bingo event to support the Pythian Diabetes Research Association which my good friend and Lodge brother Craig Shink serves as President. Our current New York Grand Chancellor Dave Stanger has long been involved with the Special Olympics and while many Pythians volunteer at a fall “olympiad” at Cantiague Park, David secured Grand Lodge approval to run a Dinner Dance through our Pythian Humanitarian Fund. At time of drafting this, FDR support for this event includes at least three tables, including many of my friends from our Basketball program; David’s chief deputy, Ted Pashko also a friend (first) and lodge brother, coordinates this gala and enjoys a reputation for fun events.


Earlier this month my friend and Lodge brother Bob Kaufman ran a Pancake breakfast through the Humanitarian Fund to support our Veterans and Servicemen and women. A May Humanitarian brunch serves as chief fundraiser for the fund which supports several causes and annually awards several (college) scholarships to member’s worthy children.


Through Gotham, our Season of Giving raises donations in a mostly grassroots manner through passing the envelope our our breakfast, lunch, and dinner meet-ups or via credit card (fees waived – thank you Marc Halpert!). Two times charities I support were selected by Michael Garibaldi who impartially selects from the business cards submitted with the donations under the careful supervision of Lisa Waterman. The second time was indirect but Raj Goel, bless his heart, directed the funds to the Knights of Pythias and we will be formally directing the donation as part of my Lodge’s (Kings-FDR Tolerance – Foundation) Charitable Awards in June.


Through Gotham relationships, I discovered and support the Theresa Foundation founded by Gotham member Vincent Russo and wife Susan. It honored Gotham co-founder Fred Klein a few years back and me the next year. Both events proved rather successful. This year’s gala also recognizes all previous honorees and Shelly and I look forward to the very nice event.


Since Shelly and I celebrate another year together today, I thank her for her love, friendship and support – always in my heart! We took in a show for our anniversary last night – Jersey Boys – and at the curtain call the cast made an appeal for Broadway Cares. Cast members stood outside the theatre with red buckets for the audience to contribute. We did out part there upon our exit.


Not everyone can support every cause and charity. If any of the above work for you please consider. Thanking everyone because all of us support and give as generously as we can.


Feel free to plug those that matter to you in the comments below (or where you find this commentary linked on social media).

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  •  MitchTobol wrote 302 Days Ago (neutral) 
    When doesn't it matter?
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  •  Dana_Charlton wrote 302 Days Ago (neutral) 
    You are an inspiration, Corey! I agree, it is important to be involved, it doesn't always have to be financial to help. Happy Anniversary to you and Shelly ~ may you enjoy many more years of love and happiness together!
    0 points
  •  Fred wrote 302 Days Ago (positive) 
    Thank you for including me.
    0 points
  •  Rona_Gura wrote 302 Days Ago (neutral) 
    It's interesting. I never looked at Spring as the beginning of the fundraiser season but you're right. I have two fundraisers that I'm attending this month.
    0 points
  •  Steven_Lichtenstein wrote 302 Days Ago (positive) 
    I think it’s great that many Gotham members support various charities. My wife and I are supporters of St. Jude’s Hospital for children. I think they’re all important and we all have to give back because the way we treat those less fortunate than us is what defines us in the book of Life.
    0 points
  •  MarilynGenoa wrote 302 Days Ago (neutral) 
    First and most important, Happy Anniversary to you and Shelly!!!!
    Fundraising seems to be an ongoing thing, rather than seasonal, although the number of invitations I receive does appear to rise with the warm weather. I absolutely agree with your description of how we find our way to certain organizations and since you have given permission to "plug" those near and dear to our own hearts, I was asked to join the Board of The Safe Center Long Island (formerly The Nassau County Coalition Against Domestic Violence and it was NCCDV when I joined the Board) by Ilene Barshay, a very dear colleague, who unfortunately recently passed away. At the time I was feeling drawn in many directions, however when I looked into the organization I realized that I could not say no. Your home should be your refuge, a place where you feel safe. Over the years TSCLI has taken on representation for victims of human trafficking, it has always represented victims of rape and sexual assault, the child advocacy center is within its compound, and Nassau County SVU is similarly housed within its building. I continue to feel privileged to be able to be even a small part of this amazing organization which has literally saved thousands of lives. We Care, the charitable arm of the Nassau County Bar Association is another organization that I gladly devote many hours each month towards. We Care has, for over 31 years, issued grants in excess of 5 million dollars over the years to Nassau County 501 (c)(3) charities, as well as issuing scholarships to high school and law school students, feeding the elderly and under served within our community on Thanksgiving, and hosting an annual Children's Festival for approximately 250 under serviced children between the ages of 6 and 12. Although, like many of us, I am involved with various other not-for-profits, it is those two organizations that make me realize how lucky most of us are, and that there truly are some very special people around us willing to reach out and help.
    0 points
  •  Daniel_Schwartz wrote 301 Days Ago (neutral) 
    Great to be involved in so many wonderful events.
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  •  Vincent_Russo wrote 301 Days Ago (neutral) 

    Thanks for your blog – and mentioning our Theresa Awards Dinner –
    Very much appreciated

    We have been privileged to honor you and Fred in the past.

    We look forward to your being part of our 25th Theresa Awards Dinner
    (especially since next year, we plan to have a more informal event in place of the Awards Dinner).

    The funds raised at this event go a long way in our ability to support programs for children with special needs in art, music, dance and recreation.
    It is also a fun event and we hope to see you and your "fans" at the Dinner.


    Thank you once again for all that you do.
    Sincerely yours,

    Vincent J. Russo, JD, LL.M, CELA* | Managing Partner

    0 points
  •  Gail_Koelln wrote 260 Days Ago (neutral) 
    One Earth Conservation empowers people to save the planet. We particularly work with indigenous people in Latin America, partnering with them to save their endangered parrots which also saves their local habitat, creates jobs and makes for a healthier environment for all. Our work has been recognized recently by the US Fish & Wildlife Service with a short documentary they produced about our project in Honduras and articles in The Economist and the Spanish language version of the conservation news site, Mongabay. Check us out at www.oneearthconservation.org and consider giving a donation if you are so moved. Thank you!
    0 points
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