Recognition for local activists as “Hidden Treasures of the Community”

Thirteen local activists were in the spotlight as the Bay Ridge Community Council honored them at its January meeting as 2013’s Hidden Treasures of the Community.

The individuals chosen for the tribute, this year, are:

•Judith Cooper and Ralph Perfetto, both longtime activists who were recognized for their dedication to the Bay Ridge Mental Health Council;

•Donna McClellan, a member of the Bay Ridge Center Community Advisory Board;

•Robert Lindsay, a Verrazano Rotary Club member and the proprietor of Parkway Flower Shop, who donates flowers for Lutheran Medical Center’s lobby and its annual auxiliary luncheon as a community service;

•Thomas Ryan, a Guild consumer who volunteers for the Guild at various events;

•Karen Tadross, Justin Brannan and Allison Robicelli, who founded and ran the Bay Ridge Cares Kitchen that cooked up 25,000 meals for Superstorm Sandy victims after the storm hit;

•James Whiffin and Jason McDermott, the proprietors of the Pour House, who did ongoing Sandy relief, both through monetary donations and on the ground in the hard-hit areas;

•Madeline Sbarra, who helped launch the Bay Ridge Men’s Club’s women’s chapter, as well as helping the Men’s Club raise money for the Guild;

•Joseph Alvear, a teacher at Fort Hamilton High School who founded the school’s Council for Unity and Reach Out chapters and who volunteered on Staten Island doing Sandy cleanup; and,

•Nicholas Saccenti, a volunteer at Fontbonne Hall Academy, who used his construction skills to help the school make necessary repairs.

BRCC has been feting “hidden treasures since 2004, noted Alex Conti, the co-chair of the committee that selects the honorees, and who presented the awards with BRCC President Renee Dorsa and committee Co-Chair Peter Scarpa.

The goal of the tribute is to shine a light on “individuals and groups who are unsung heroes,” said Conti, “based upon quiet participation and civic activism in the community.

“The community,” he went on, “is surrounded with reflections of everyone doing great work. These people this year stand out.”

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