NEW ROCHELLE, NY -- The Chamber of Commerce was in full bloom last night returning the Annual Dinner Dance to its itinerary of yearly events and awarding some unsung heroes in the community.
“Tonight’s awards honored people who have done much for our community and who have long been unnoticed. It’s time they are acknowledged for all of the wonderful work that they do,” said Bob Marrone, Executive Director of the New Rochelle Chamber of Commerce.
The view of the Long Island sound seemed more spectacular at The Davenport Country Club, which served as the venue for the annual event missing from the Chamber’s roster in recent years. However, after bringing back the event for a Spring Dinner Dance, the Chamber awarded the Humanitarian of the Year to Jeffrey Deskovic, of the Jeffrey Deskovic Foundation. Also awarded was community leaders Rosemary McLaughlin and Frank Miceli. Each of the individuals who received Proclamations as well was humbled by their bestowed honors that were announced at the occasion by Mayor Noam Bramson.
Exonerated from prison after 16 years of a crime he didn’t commit, Jeffrey Deskovic was awarded money from the state. Instead of spending his financial gain on a lavish lifestyle, he used his monetary reward to “create a silver lining out of [his] hardship” and began a foundation. Visibly moved by being awarded he said “I never thought I would be here accepting an award like this.” After describing his unimaginable ordeal Deskovic unassumingly requested financial help for his non-profit organization which currently assists others in his past predicament.
The second honoree of the night was Rosemary McLaughlin, a resident of New Rochelle, who received the Lifetime Recognition Award. McLaughlin, who ran the Thanksgiving Day Parade and Haunted House for more than a decade, headed up the Chamber for many years and, currently, is very active with the Republican Committee and works as Senior Vice President/Group Director of Signature Bank in the North End of New Rochelle. The Chamber chose Rosemary for “generously giving so much time and talent to the community for so many years.” As Bob Marrone, who currently manages the parade also said, “It had to be a labor of love as running the parade is so much darn work!” When Rosemary accepted the award it seemed that she was most proud of the wonderful job she did raising her two respectful sons, who celebrated with McLaughlin along with friends and family.
The final award, The Unsung Citizenship Award, which was a complete shock to the recipient, went to Frank Miceli. He was chosen not only for the selfless hours he devotes to the budding New Rochelle organization but also for his active involvement in so many other non profits in the community. Frank Miceli not only owns Minuteman Press, a successful business in New Rochelle for 37 years, but he is also active in the Sound Shore chapter of Business Network International, the New Rochelle Chamber of Commerce, The Boys and Girls Club, the CYO, and the New Rochelle High School Football Parents Association. Someone who never seeks accolades and an unsung hero in our community, Miceli exceeded the requirements set for receiving an award of this kind by always displaying humility and motivation of focus on others. When Miceli was informed of winning the award by the Mayor, his family, who were part of the surprise, was ushered in to enjoy the remainder of the evening with Frank. It was a lovely moment for all in attendance and who know of Miceli’s character and charitable contributions to the community.
The night wrapped up with one of the highlights of the evening’s festivities, which was a silent auction that included donations from local businesses arranged by iPower Global Solutions. Some of the donations included a diamond bracelet from Talner’s, sports memorabilia from Steiner Sports, a party burger truck from POW! Burger, a photo shoot from photographer, Aaron Kershaw, memberships to the YMCA, Champ’s Boxing and The Rock Club, and Gift Certificates to local retailers and restaurants including Sorell Wine Shop, Don Coqui, Models, Avon, Harley Davidson and FunFuzion.
“It was a fun evening, the honorees were touched, the food was wonderful, and the program flowed [with Bob as Emcee]…overall I believe this is a blooming start to the Chamber bringing back the Annual Dinner Dance,” said Vincent Fasano, Director of George T. Funeral Home and Treasurer of the Chamber of Commerce.
The New Rochelle Chamber of Commerce works in conjunction with the City of New Rochelle but operates as a separate entity to advocate for and promote local business and to ultimately facilitate the local economy and the progress of the community as a whole.