Community resolutions 2022

Leaders discuss what’s on their agenda for the new year

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The Suffolk County News asked prominent members of the community what their goals were as individuals and as representatives of their organizations for 2022.

Here are some of the responses:

Town of Islip supervisor, Angie Carpenter

1-12-21 Town if Islip Supervisor Angie Carpenter
1-12-21 Town if Islip Supervisor Angie Carpenter
Evaluate internal space needs and find solutions to meet those needs.

The challenge of 2022: how do you maintain services in an era of rising prices, without increasing the burden on residents and taxpayers.

How to make government more easily accessible to the average resident; continued social media and website presence.

Be grateful for something every day of 2022, as I personally am for our Town of Islip employees, who truly care about our Town.

Add more airlines and nonstop destinations to the offerings at Long Island MacArthur Airport.

Turf fields in Town parks.

Continue to improve our road and drainage infrastructure.

Legis. Jarrett Gandolfo, (R-7th District)

“Get back into shape and to read more books!”

Rev. Sejin Cha, Bayport United Methodist Church

“My New Year’s resolution is to be a pastor who goes into the community, gets to know and build relationships with unchurched people, and cares for those who are hurting. This is because Jesus went where people were and did not wait for them to come to him. I want to know more about our community and its needs. On New Year’s Day, I put this question on my desk, “If BUMC closes its doors today, would anyone but our own members notice? Would the community be saddened because such a great community-transformation partner – a missionary of impact – was gone?”

Father Jeffrey Neal Stevenson, St. Ann’s Episcopal Church, Sayville

“Over the past two years we have been bending, twisting, and jumping through hoops to try to keep things going.  As we found new ways to make ministry happen, we all had to learn new skills and new ways of being church; seminary did not prepare us to be video producers and social media managers. My resolution for the year is to focus on the basics of ministry, remembering why I became a priest. My focus this year will be on people and helping people find the joy of knowing God’s presence through worship, prayer, and community.”

Alyse Arpino, executive director, CM Performing Arts Center, Oakdale

“It always seems impossible until it’s done.” – Nelson Mandela 

“I am not usually one to make a resolution. I usually try to use the New Year as a fresh start: a time to continue projects that were a success and a chance to create new and exciting things. However, I came across this quote on a notebook on New Year’s Day and it spoke volumes! Theatre has been a part of my life since I was 2 years old. On March of 2020, theatre was taken away without a promise of returning due to the pandemic.  After the two years we have had, it was such a reminder of the strength we have had and how we are able to continue to defy the impossible. Things that were so natural to us became impossible. I will spend the year trying to attain new heights, and keep my focus intact. We often refuse to do things only because we think that we are not capable of achieving the goal that we have set for ourselves! Do the impossible!”

Suzanna Alagna, owner, Hot Yoga Works, Bayport & Setauket

“Kindness, all the time, which might be impossible, and to be honest, I’ve never really tried. My mom is the kindest person I know. She calls it her superpower! I’ve seen her dismantle bullies, stand up in fights and diffuse tension with her kindness.

She chooses that path, over and over. As a child I thought she lacked authenticity, because she didn’t get mad, or yell. I’m just more of a realist or as I like to call it authentic, but the truth is the world doesn’t need my authenticity as much as it needs my understanding. Kindness above all else is this year’s goal!”

Maryann Almes, president, Oakdale Historical Society

“Oakdale Historical Society has identified ‘22 Wishes for 2022’ that focus on the celebration, protection and preservation of the rich history of Oakdale.  Our New Year’s resolution is to refocus our efforts on preservation - specifically the historical restoration and replacement of the windows at St. John’s Landmark Church (circa 1765), and protection in the continued fight for Vanderbilt’s Idle Hour mansion and the National Landmarking of the Oakdale Railroad Station and Freight Depot.  As far as ‘celebration,’  we do that by sharing the pictures, memories and stories of those who have gone before us through our programs, informational booklets/pamphlets and Facebook/Instagram outreach.  We welcome all to join us!”

Jason Borowski, president of the Blue Point Civic Association

“I did make a few New Year’s resolutions this year.  The first one is to rededicate myself to the efforts of the Blue Point Civic Association. The pandemic put several impactful projects that we had started on, such as the completion of Roe Park and the restoration of the concrete fence at Avery’s 5 Mile Look.   Now that things are beginning to get back to normal, I’m excited for these projects personally and the positive impact that they will have on the community.  On a more personal scale, I also made a resolution to cut soda and alcohol from my diet in an effort to combat the ‘pandemic poundage’ I’ve acquired.  So far, so good on that one, as I’ve been able to refrain from both thus far in the new year.”

Barbara Leogrande, leading Realtor at Douglas Elliman

“A new year is always a great opportunity to hit the reset button and assess your goals and dreams. My resolution is to reevaluate what needs to be adjusted to be the best possible version of myself. That process encompasses all aspects of my life: my health, my family life, my career and creating space and time for things that bring me joy. Having daily gratitude is a sure fire way to keep myself on track. Finding the greatness in the small things makes everyday a blessing.”

Jen McNamara, founder and president of Johnny Mac Foundation

“This year, our community suffered a number of unspeakable tragedies. Jack and I, along with our nonprofit, the Johnny Mac Foundation, resolve to continue to help our community heal from this year’s tragedies and to assist members of our community in working towards a better and brighter tomorrow for the residents of BBP. We resolve to channel the drive and spirit of my husband John as we move forward to spiritually heal our community and to find ways to always assist where there is a financial need. With the opening of our new BBP Library and the John McNamara Teen Room, we aim to continue to support the youth of our community in any way we can.”

Legis. Anthony Piccirillo, (R-8th District)

“In 2022, I hope to spend more time with friends and family enjoying our beautiful county parks and beaches. We have so many local gems in our community that I want to start enjoying more.”

Franziska Bernhard, owner, RadianZ Studio and Spa, West Sayville

“After the difficult last two years, the last thing we need is more unrealistic pressure on ourselves. 

I’m sure we’ve all been there: on January first we decide to go to the gym every day, never eat junk again, lose 30 pounds… all in the hope to finally be happy and feel deserving of love. 

The stress and pressure of these resolutions are counterproductive. 

If there was ever a year to give yourself a break, it’s now! Be gentle with yourself. Let go of the idea that something is wrong with you. Shift your perspective to be more aware and grateful for the things that are going well for you. Start loving yourself, exactly the way you are: perfectly imperfect.”

Bob Draffin, president, Bayport Civic Association

“I believe I share my 2022 Resolution with many in wanting a return to the normalcy of enjoying the company of one’s friends and family in the way we had always done so before 2020.  This year marks the Bayport Civic Association’s 20th year of community service.  Knowing that these past two years have been incredibly tough on so many people, businesses and organizations, I resolve to pick up from where we left off and achieve even bigger and better things together!”  

Carol Seitz-Cusack, president, Bayport-Blue Point Chamber of Commerce

“This year we look forward to the return of our treasured St. Patrick’s parade, which will see Matt McGuire finally serve as grandmaster. In addition, this parade will be held to celebrate our dear Tom Reid, founder of the parade, who passed in 2021.

In addition, the chamber will be there to help our members with the ongoing pandemic and continue to engage the community to support our businesses.”

Christine Kelly Sarni, president of Greater Sayville Civic Association

“As an organization, the GSCA’s resolution is to further our mission of community engagement through increasing our membership, sharing information and fostering civic engagement through activities that support local environmental, cultural and economic issues.”

Eileen Tyznar, president, Greater Sayville Chamber

“Our Sayville board has worked together on some fresh new resolutions and goals for this 2022 year. 

Our main goal is to increase much-needed commerce to our businesses, increase tourism,  work on grants for beautification projects to our Main Street, while at the same time providing new family-fun events to the community.”

* Live on Main events, Wellness Week, Bridal Event, music and art events.

* Beautification grants and projects working on improving Main Street and the surrounding area and local parks.

* Provide regularly scheduled employment fairs and small business seminars.

*Tourism packages possibly including a local  hotel or bed and breakfast packages.

* Fundraising events that will not only benefit our plan of works for the town and businesses but will be community inclusive.

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