| IN THE NEWS JULY / AUGUST 2016
||2016 ROBS SCHOLARSHIP AWARDS
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We are proud to announce that once again ROBS was able to award scholarships to graduating Brentwood High School seniors who want to pursue a degree in education. Scholarship night was held on May 25, 2016 at Brentwood High School and ROBS Vice President Kathleen Guleksen was there to present awards to the winners. Thanks to you, our very generous ROBS members, we were able to award scholarships to four deserving Brentwood seniors. The $1,000 Jack Zuckerman award was presented to Jenny Maldonado, the $1,000 Dorothy Zuckerman award was presented to Miranda Sostre, the $750 Lillian Kelly award was presented to Melissa Cintellus and the $500 Sheila Sustrin award, a new award given in memory of Sheila Sustrin who passed away last year, was presented to Angela Rice. Congratulations to all of the winners! We wish you all a successful college career!
ATTENTION ROBS MEMBERS
RENEW YOUR MEMBERSHIP TODAY
You will be receiving a 4 x 6 card in the mail for you to fill out and return along with your $25 membership fee. This card should arrive with the latest copy of the ROBS Newsletter. If you do not receive the membership application card, you can download one here
. New members can also use this card to join ROBS.
Simply fill out the card, and indicate if there are corrections to be made to your current listing in the directory. Return the card in the pre-addressed envelope to Carmen Roldan, 49 Linda Lane, North Babylon, NY 11703. Include your check made out to ROBS for $25 with "Dues" written on the memo line.
|A NOTE FROM GRACE FISHENFELD
Grace Fishenfeld, one of our members in Florida, continues to be recognized and win awards for her artwork there. The following is a note that she sent along with an example of one of her works.
This newer masterpiece, titled WHO'S THERE, was made from peach pits, twigs, cardboard from toilet paper and an empty egg box. It won an award at the Boca Guild Art show at the Boca Education Administration building art show. I continued to do a few more Owl pieces and titled the 2nd one, WHO'S WHO, (creating two Owls, one male the other female) #3, I titled WHO KNOWS and the last one WHO CARES. For me, it's fun and I don't give a hoot anyway.~Grace
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It is with deepest sadness that we inform you of the sudden passing of Margaret (Peggy) Lynch, sister of recently retired North Middle teacher, coach and BTA delegate, Mary Beth Lynch.
The wake will be held on Wednesday August 24th, 2-4:30 and 7-9, at Overton’s Funeral Home, 172 Main St, Islip. Funeral services on Thursday at St. Mary’s, 20 Harrison Ave in East Islip (9:30am or 10:30am arrangements currently pending)
Condolences may be sent to
Mary Beth Lynch
202 Moffit Blvd.
Islip, NY 11751
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Professional dancer and instructor Daurice Snyder (1921 - 2016) passed away this week. For decades Mrs. Snyder taught dance in the Brentwood Teachers Association program that benefited its scholarship fund. She received her training at the Eastman School of Music and the NYC American School of Ballet. After performing as a professional dancer and touring with the U.S.O, Mrs. Snyder settled in Brentwood and began to share her craft with generations of students there. She also taught at the Academy of St. Joseph. Mrs. Snyder was married to the late percussionist Jack (Red) Snyder. Many thanks are due to Mrs. Snyder for the enrichment she provided to so many! All are invited to pay their respects at the Michael J Grant Funeral Home, 571 Suffolk Avenue, Brentwood, NY on Monday July 11th 10am to 11:30am
See "Daurice Snyder Brings Dance to Brentwood Students"
and listen to the oral history interview with Daurice on the July/August 2010 Announcements
page of this site.
|How are we doing?
We'd like to hear from you.
Please visit our
Letters to the Editor
Page where you can share your views and comments
View the In Memoriam page
with the list of our Brentwood colleagues who have passed away. This list will be updated on a yearly basis.
MEMEBER ACTION CENTER
Support VOTE-COPE with your voluntary contribution. Download
the VOTE-COPE Contribution Card here.
Theater Trip - Patchogue
Aug 27 - Sept 10
Castles of England, Ireland & Scotland
RC 21 Website: http://rc21.ny.aft.org
||WHAT YOU DIDN'T KNOW
||All About July and August
July in History
August in History
|ROBS HISTORY PROJECT - John M. Sherin
|Why did we do it?
What was our purpose in taking on such an open ended “History Project”; for which we evolved a script of questions and got answers from over 150 subjects for two decades?
We couldn’t answer the question in 1994 when people would ask “What are you going to do with the interviews?” All we could say was that for educational purposes we had to document our record now or lose the chance to preserve so many poignant accounts, funny stories and touching tales told by exemplary educators. We knew these dedicated public servants might shortly, for reasons yet unknown, be leaving Brentwood for good.
So, we decided to let time sort out the details. We began scheduling appointments. We asked questions and listened saving for generations the essence of what it meant to have been an educator or employed, in this large public school system during the second half of the 20th century. Brentwood remains an exemplar to all others; a diverse microcosm of America reflecting 124 districts on Long Island while simultaneously resembling thousands across the U.S. We’ve accomplished something here to be proud of. Whether we were interviewed or not, ours is a claim of service that few professionals in the State of New York or elsewhere have positioned themselves to share in the way we have.
INITIALLY the practice of sitting with a subject for an hour and giving them a hundred percent focused attention seemed somewhat daunting to a number of friends and colleagues. So much so in fact that many declined our repeated invitations to speak with us as they left careers or retired from full employment. Despite all assurances that we were not about investigative journalism or invading privacy, they deferred. Now, twenty years after we began, some are saying they may be ready. “Better late than never” we say. However, to all among you who were willing to share not only your classroom experiences and personal stories, but precious memories from your lives along with your fondest hopes for the future, we say “Thanks”. Thanks for allowing us to continue the process by paying it forward as we share these interviews with the Brentwood community and countless professionals and researchers near and far. Through an acceptance of ROBS offer of collaboration with Archivist Dr. Geri Solomon and The Long Island Studies Institute at Hofstra University our History Project lives on in academia as well as in the collection of the Brentwood Public Library, thanks to Director, Thomas A. Tarantowicz.
Enjoy unlimited visits to www.robsny.org where you can watch and listen to segments from featured Interviews in the ROBS History Project Section on our Announcements Page each month. Return here to listen and learn again and again.
THIS MONTH'S FEATURED HISTORY PROJECT
Anita Silverman -
She was born in Brooklyn, New York, on March 5, 1930 near a farm in Bensonhurst. She attended New Utrecht High School with many others from Brentwood like G. Guy DiPietro and John Sherin albeit at different times. She could even name the Principal of the school. Her father was of English origin. He emigrated to Canada and then came illegally into the United States where he met and married her mother. She had been born in Russia into a family of eleven brothers and sisters who by then were all deceased. She had a network of cousins who Anita said must have had money based upon family accounts. They were a hardworking family. Her mother did housework and her father was a salesman who modeled in his spare time during the 30’s and 40’s doing advertising copy for Philco Corporation, primarily in the air conditioning and theatrical market. Her brother died in 1979 at 52 years. He had operated a pawn shop.
Among her earliest memories she recalls being in a crib and told by an adult that “she doesn’t like men”. That changed when she was about 14, she said. She remembers a time before the Belt Parkways was constructed in Brooklyn that they were able to walk to the water (Gravesend Bay) from their home. Her mother’s sisters were very good to her and her siblings. They were five girls and seven boys, were close and always around much like her grandparents. Anita attended PS 128 in Brooklyn and loved to read which she did by 1st grade. She has vivid memories of being in the 7th grade when World War II began. She turned 11 years old in 1941 and remembers listening to a replay of President Roosevelt’s “Day of Infamy” speech on a radio she had brought to class for that purpose. She told us how six months later she performed live on a radio station in downtown Brooklyn playing piano. She reminisced how her mother was nervous when U Boats were seen in the waters of the Narrows. Back then you could ride the subways for a nickel and go anywhere in the City. From Jr High 128 she could walk to Coney Island by following the coastline. Music was her best subject and History her worst though while she loved it, didn’t do well in class. She graduated high school soon after she was married. Both she and her brother knew that they had to do well in school and they made sure they did.
Our interview took place December 2, 1997. Anita Rubenstein Silverman began her career in Brentwood at South East Elementary school where she worked with Irv Masten in the Speech Department. She remained there with Irv for five years after which she transferred to the High School in the Sonderling Guidance Department. She loved it even more than she had loved the Speech Department and made wonderful friends there until the time when she retired in June 1990.
Currently living in Boca Raton, Florida. Anita lost her first husband in 1985 and then married Bob Silverman, a man she’d met in Brentwood in 1987. On a lark, they put $10 down on a condo in Florida, with the intention of renting it to make money but never living there. Bob had been in the furniture business when they met. When he closed his business in 1989 he decided to stay home for a while, while Anita went to work in the district. After only one year she decided to retire. They asked their renters to vacate and Bob and Anita relocated to Florida with many other friends and neighbors from Brentwood including Yevette Zimmerman, and Lillian Yedwabnick. They became a virtual Brentwood contingent of new comers to their community. Marilyn DePlaza and she also ran annual reunions at a local restaurant attended by many visiting ROBS members.
Bob was an artist and wood carver who sculpts. Her three children David, who works for Harmon Kardon, was just back from China, Steve, in construction working in Georgia, both graduates of Brentwood Schools, and Sue who graduated from Maslow-Toffler (Brentwood’s School of the Future), was employed by the Glen Cove Schools as a Media Consultant. She had seven grandchildren (the eldest was Felicia, who was coming to visit over Christmas, Alex who was 15 and doing very well in school, Ariel 14, and Sue’s children. Her son in Marietta Georgia had 4 sons from 10 to 6 (they had one per year) and one who is taking piano lessons she said, takes after her. In addition she named Mike, Daniel, Eric, and Elliot who visit her every two years. Anita extolled the virtues of a high school counselor Dr Helen Smith who she remembered fondly. Her love of Chopin earned her the position of pianist for the Chorus in Boca where she performs for Nursing Homes, Hospitals and loves it. She also performs as an accompanist for a singer performer who’s organizing a show.
When the records department needed more help she decided to retire. Her husband Bob recently retired stayed home building ship models. She worked in Brentwood for 25 years from 1965 to 1990.
Sandy Chase had been a great friend to her. Anita spoke about her and what a great teacher she was. She remembered the Brentwood of 1954 as a community of churches and store fronts. When she came from Brooklyn they bought the house in Robin Hill on Timberline and she loved it. In 1965 South East Elementary School opened. At that time there were 14 elementary schools, 4 junior high schools and the Sonderling & Ross Buildings. In 1965 she passed the civil service test and sat for no less than five interviews. She fondly remembers Bob Leiterman. She recalled having to go to Fishers and Koehler’s to buy milk and shopping in Smithtown or Bay Shore. It was a different kind of community then when everyone could leave their doors open. She loved Brentwood and hated being away from it. They had a pool in the backyard. Those were ‘Happy Days’. Her son Steve had been active in sports. She told a story about him bringing a friend home for the first time and her being surprised when she came to meet him for the first time and discovered he was black. “Why didn’t you tell me?” she asked. “I didn’t know” was his reply. She spoke of Charter Oaks and Regis Park, of Maslow-Toffler and the politics of fear. She spoke of her experience with organizational politics and a threatened strike and dressing in black because of pay withheld. In the beginning she earned $52 per week and received a check for $104 every two weeks. There were few benefits for clerical employees who eventually became part of the Brentwood Teachers Association (BTA). She saw herself as a fighter for what was right but never thought of herself as assertive. She missed the camaraderie of Brentwood and spoke of how much she loved her job. She worked with transcripts and student records of their moves from one building to another as the district grew. She loved it and missed it all. She spoke affectionately of Jim Varian, Gerry Cohen and Marty Efron, Records Officer. At one of their Florida Reunions Anita was delighted when she reconnected with good friends Ruth Gleason and Betty Tecone with whom she had lost contact. She remembers Stan Yankowski and Fred Weaver and related a story about when she’d worked as Hal Sabotko’s Secretary in Sonderling Guidance.
You can also view any of these past interviews by visiting History Project Interview Archives
Baker Bernhardt, Ruth
Baker Bazata, Eleanor
Laub, Dr. Herb
Sustrin, Letty and Sheila
Walker Lloyd, Shirley
View May 8, 2015 History Project Celebration Photo Album
View History Project Slide Show on YouTube
|THE TOWN CRIER - MarilynDePlaza@aol.com
Marilyn De Plaza
The Town Crier" was set up a number of years ago so that the retirees of the Brentwood School District could have an email center to stay in touch. Since I began to send out all sorts of information, retirees from all over the country have sent me their email addresses. Some have asked, "Do you have any idea where so and so is?" Others have sent proud news of their accomplishments, their family news, photos,etc. and sadly, we often get bad news. Many retirees whom I have never met write me to thank me for keeping this connection going, as everyone remembers the Brentwood years with warm feelings.