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HeartShare Human Services of New York celebrated its official Centennial Anniversary on Saturday, July 12, 2014 with a “Block Party” at MetroTech Commons in Downtown Brooklyn.
Over 800 HeartShare guests, employees and their families, as well as children and adults whom HeartShare serves, attended the event, which highlighted HeartShare’s century of service to the New York community. “Whether it was a Board member or staff member, we follow in the footsteps of legendary men and women, equally committed to our mission, who paved the way for us. We honor their memories and their efforts by remaining true to our cause and ensuring that the lives of those we serve are better, more inclusive and more productive. We can also attribute to our predecessors HeartShare’s growth from a fledging organization to our stature today as a $150 million premier human services agency with 2,000 employees, serving almost 29,000 children, adults and families throughout New York,” said HeartShare Board First Vice Chair Bob Golden, who opened the program.
Reflecting on his remarks earlier in the day, HeartShare President and CEO Bill Guarinello noted, “We’ve lasted a long time in the social services world. Throughout the years, we’ve adapted and readjusted to respond to the changing needs of society. I’m truly proud to be leading HeartShare as it reaches this milestone.” Mr. Guarinello, Mr. Golden and Board Member Jonathan Goldstein cut HeartShare’s Centennial Anniversary cake.
Mr. Guarinello relayed recognitions of HeartShare’s Centennial Anniversary, including a White House greeting from President Barack Obama, as well as congratulatory letters from former Presidents George W. Bush, George H.W. Bush and Jimmy Carter. Additionally, Mayor Bill de Blasio proclaimed Saturday, July 12, 2014 as “HeartShare Human Services of New York Day” in New York City.
Several HeartShare program groups performed during the “Block Party” including Queens Day Hab Players, Shirley Tanyhill Beacon Program’s Elevation Dancers and Double Dutch team, and The HeartShare School Rock Band, a 7-student group attending The HeartShare School that serves children 5-21 diagnosed with autism. HeartShare premiered a video introducing the band, which spotlights the students’ cognitive, social and emotional growth through music therapy classes. Rod T., a resident at HeartShare Ferraro Residence, sang “The Star-Spangled Banner.”
HeartShare celebrity supporters, including actress Abigail Hawk from CBS drama Blue Bloods and actor Sean Ringgold known for TV’s One Life to Live and films Notorious and The Smurfs, also joined the festivities.