Parade leader celebrated by community

Chamber’s grand marshal has long civic history

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On Friday, Jan. 26, the Bayport-Blue Point Chamber of Commerce honored Ronnie Devine Jr. at the Mansion in West Sayville.

Abundant with shades of green, the evening was attended by civic members, elected officials, and all varieties of well-wishers to the 2024 St. Patrick’s Parade grand marshal.

Devine Jr., who currently serves on the board of the chamber, is also president of the Bayport-Blue Point Library board.

“Ronnie has been such an important part of everything Bayport-Blue Point! He has done tremendous work improving our community, with every organization that is lucky enough to have him, not only for our chamber but for the Bayport-Blue Point Public Library as well as so many others,” said the chamber.

For the past seven years, Devine has served as the president of the Board of Trustees of the Bayport-Blue Point Public Library and as a board member for over 10 years.

During his tenure, the library embarked on a plan to acquire and redevelop the local convent owned by the Ursuline Sisters of Tildonk in Blue Point.   

In a special election in December of 2019, community residents voted overwhelmingly (68 percent approval) to convert the former convent into the new library.

“Today, our beautifully designed new home situated on over eight pastoral acres has been overwhelmingly acclaimed, with expanding programs and services serving the needs of our patrons.  We are now referred to as a world class regional community library.  I was very proud and honored for the opportunity to shepherd this venture from the beginning to today’s modern library,” said Devine.

In his professional career, for more than 20 years, Devine has served as a state-certified assessor advanced for both the towns of Islip and Brookhaven, the two largest town assessing jurisdictions in New York State.

Retiring as assessor emeritus, Devine continues in a consulting and management level for both townships, as well as additional municipalities and private-sector clients.

For the past decade, Devine has served as the president of the Suffolk County Assessor’s Association.

“When not devoting my time to our library, I also serve our Bayport-Blue Point community and Islip Town in various positions of leadership,” said Devine, whose expansive list of volunteer endeavors. “It is an honor and privilege to have been selected by our chamber to be the grand marshal of the 2024 St. Patrick’s parade,” said Devine. “Our parade is one of the largest on Long Island. It is one of the events that shows what a great community we have in Bayport and Blue Point.”

Connie Haab, 2023’s grand marshal, said, “Ronnie has given so much of his time and effort volunteering for the betterment of the community as well as the residents in his many years of public service. I am sure he will continue to serve in this role as grand marshal.”

Town of Islip councilman John Lorenzo (R-4th District) said that the St. Patrick’s Day Parade was a celebration that “captures the essence of the Bayport-Blue Point community,” and that Devine had “made significant contributions” with the recognition “truly well-deserved.”

“We eagerly await his leadership and are excited for him to lead the parade,” said Lorenzo.

Town of Brookhaven councilman Neil Foley (R-5th District) said, “Ronnie embodies all the passion and dedication that has made this community the dedicated force that it is. His appointment as grand marshal is the capstone of a lifetime in service to others.”