Gotham City Gazette
Gotham City Gazette© Winter 2015
May 2015
Author : Ester Horowitz, Editor

The Gotham Holiday Party


Summed up by Shelley Simpson


If you judge the success of a party by the difficulty in quieting people down to hear announcements and the number still left at the end causing a backup at the coat check are two criteria, Gotham Holiday Party was an A+ Actually, by any criteria it was an A+ celebration.


A big shout out to Debbie Lindner for all the behind the scenes organizing! Nancy and Mitch put on the best orientation ever - I've been to a few. Corey Bearak took care of signage acknowledging our sponsors. Thank you to our gracious and charming host and leader, Fred Klein and to Norman Spizz for his eventspertise.  Brett Deutsch, thank you for capturing the festivities in pictures. Paul Altizer the banquet manager and his staff at the Friars for making sure we were all well fueled for the evening.  If you weren’t there, take your swift kick to the self now and promise yourself you will attend next year.


Norm Spizz was charged with quieting the revelers – not an easy task. Then Fred announced and gave out a new award, "The Special Giver" award, which went to Raj Goel. He didn't get to speak, but his smile said it all.  FYI, Raj often goes by the name "anonymous" when contributing generously to Gotham fundraising.


Speaking of fundraising, over this “season of giving” we raised $22,000 - Wow! Checks for $5,500 were awarded to The Center For Therapeutic Riding nominated by South Florida member Ellen North; the Make A Wish Foundation of America nominated by Gotham Suffolk member Jeffrey Spiegel; Lawyers Resource Group member Bruce Swicker won for Lustgarten Foundation; and Real Estate Group member David Rubin for Safebase NY.


The recipient of the Red Bandana Award was Cindy Somma.  Cindy donated her kidney to save a life. Her advice “Don’t think about it, just do it!” This award and beautiful trophy is given annually by Jefferson Crowther in memory of his son Welles Remy Crowther who was killed saving lives at the World Trade  Center Towers on September 11th.  Welles, a volunteer firefighter, made three trips up into the Tower saving people. He was wearing a red bandanna which he carried in his back pocket to protect himself from the dust and smoke in case of fire.  He was in the lobby ready to go back up again when the building collapsed and he was killed.


After quieting the crowd yet again, our networkers of the year, Liz Saldana and Larry Sprung were recognized. I don't think having the same initials went into the decision, but it is interesting how it worked out. Liz and Larry are the perfect choice for this award, having done so much for Gotham both on behalf of the organization and for individual members.  They live Gotham’s mission every day so it was nice to see their hard work recognized.


After all the awards were given, it was back to the party, which really was more like a family reunion – well, what a family reunion should look like.



Member Highlight

Laraine Schwartz

by Shelley Simpson


This Gotham member’s photo should be in the dictionary next to “nice.” I first met Laraine (Lari) Schwartz, a quiet yet rockin’ superstar of Gotham, when she went out of her way from NJ to drive me – someone she didn’t know - from the Upper West Side to a far flung location in Queens to volunteer for the Battle of the Bands. Lari brings passion to everything she does and she does a lot! I appreciate her good counsel and encourage you all to get to know her.


1. What is something that nobody in Gotham knows about you?  I spent one Thanksgiving in a suite where Bob Dylan once stayed.

2. If you could be other than human, what other part of nature would you be? A black capped chickadee, the first to the feeder, quite friendly very chatty, and the leader to tell others where the food is.

3. If you had a slash career, what would you be doing?    Writer/painter

4. Hobbies? Painting, playing bass guitar, golfing, gardening, writing, biking, hiking, crocheting

5. What is your favorite word? Confluence

6. If they made a movie about you, who would play you? Jodie Foster

7. If you had one wish what would it be? Peace on Earth

8.What is your favorite mode of public transportation and why? Bicycle because of the freedom it provides, the gas it doesn't use and the exercise it provides

9.What would you like to be remembered for? My kindness

10.What is your favorite quotation? Do unto others as you would have them do unto you

11. What is your favorite NYC site? Central Park

12. What is your favorite cartoon character and why? Lucy; I identify with pulling the football away from Charlie Brown...little sister that I am

13. What is your dream vacation? Summer in Trenton, Maine,

14. What is your favorite book? “My Cousin Rachel” by Daphne Du Maurier

15. What is the sound you would like to hear when you wake up in the morning? Birds chirping

16. What sound would sooth you to sleep? The ocean or blasting Bruce Springsteen

17. Who is your favorite performer? Lucinda Williams

18. If you were a color, what would it be? Yellow

19. What is your favorite aspect of Gotham?  Unconditional love of so many friends



Say Hello To Our Distant Groups


Pictures say more than any amount of words.  Today we honor our distance groups by putting names and faces together.  Almost as good as being in the room with them.

South Florida 1/21/2015 Meeting:







Gotham South Florida Group


The Stand up and Cheer Corner


Scott Bloom announces that BLOOM Real Estate Group LLC won 2014 top revenue year.


Gail Koelln, President of GK Grant Writing, helped a client raise over $1,000,000 through two proposals submitted to the same government funding source at the same time last fall. The client was awarded grants for both proposals, which together added up to $1,068,000.  Needless to say the client really likes her work.


Suzanne Neilson of the Princeton Group reports that Joshua Zinder Architecture + Design was just named the 2014 Architectural Firm of the Year (NJ)!  This immediately follows Josh's award last year as the 2013 Architect of the Year.  That's a lot of recognition considering there are 2329 licensed architects in the state and many many more who are not licensed.  Not only is Josh one of Gotham's greatest members (e.g., Networker of the Year, kind, helpful, fun, intelligent…), but he is also a tremendously respected, award-winning architect.  Josh excels at everything he does.  We in Gotham Princeton celebrate and congratulate him!


Thank You For Your Support in 2014
The Gotham Film Festival


The Fares ($500):

5th Street Advisors, LLC (Lucas Meyer)

Brainlink International (Raj Goel)

Hub International Northeast (Susan Sajiun-Fitzharris)


Straphanger ($250):

Eddy & Schein In-Home Administrators for Seniors (Gideon Schein)

Superior Sewing Machine & Supply (Lonny Schwartz)

Vincent J. Russo & Associates, P.C. (Vincent J. Russo, Esq.)

JZA+D (Joshua Zinder AIA, LEED AP, NCARB)


Cyclist ($100)

Carriage Trade Insurance Agency (Michael Jakob)

Welles Financial Services (Kelly Welles)




The Gotham Holiday Winter Cocktail Party

Sponsors  ($500):

Skody Scot and Company (William Skody)

Grassi & Co. (Steven Goldstein)



The Gotham Green Awards

Sponsors  ($500):

All Star Reporting (Jeff Lewis)

JZA+D (Joshua Zinder AIA, LEED AP, NCARB)



and our global Gotham sponsor of all our 2014 & 2015 events,

Brainlink International (Raj Goel


For more information on being a Sponsor, contact Sponsor Chair Corey Bearak.


Welcome to the Tribe

Members who joined since last Gazette through end of 2014


Name                                      Company                                                      Group

JIM CROSSETT                       Synergy Homecare                                  Westerners

LESLIE BLANCO ISHOO          Sterling National Bank                             Gotham First

NANCY GOULD                       ACSIA Partners                                     Westchester I

GEORGE AKST                                    Akst & Akst                                        Legal

JOSH FATOULLAH                  JR Wealth Advisors LLC                            Long Island

STEVEN L. RUBIN                   Drazen Law Group, LLC                             New Haven

MICHELLE ADDO                    Sayles & Winnikoff Communications          Social Media

MARK J. FOLEY                       The Folson Group                               NY Real Estate

Jacqui Bishop                          Sharp Again Naturally                          Westchester I

MOSHE MARGOLIN         Adult Jewish Learning Programs LLC                    Princeton

ALEC URBACH                     College Admission Central LLC                       Princeton

SUSAN COHEN                    Royal Health Care Services                           LI Women

AKSHARA KANNAN          Weiss, Zarett, Brofman & Sonnenklar, P.C.         LI Women

Josh Fatoullah                                 JR Wealth Advisors LLC                  Long Island

CRAIG E. ROSASCO                Turley, Redmond, Rosasco & Rosasco     LI Legal

BRIAN HAYNES                      Haynes NY                                         NY Real Estate

JOSEPH G. ENGELS                 GEI Consultants, Inc., P.C.                  NY Real Estate

JIM NEWHOUSE            Newhouse Financial and Insurance Brokers     Westchester II

ADAM RUDE                      Lob Planning Group                                Westchester II

STEVEN Z. REISNER               Melrose Credit Union                                   Suffolk

HARVEY H. ROSEN                 Schmutter, Strull, Fleisch, Inc.                   MAD


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