Supervisor Anthony J. Santino and the Hempstead Town Board honored eight local residents during a special ceremony that observed National Hispanic Heritage Month at Hempstead Town Hall. Each honoree was recognized for their contributions to the Hispanic community, their neighborhoods and Hempstead Town as a whole.
“Our honorees have a strong commitment to faith and family, are hardworking, and are deeply woven into the fabric of the American identity and the values that we all cherish,” said Santino. “This year’s honorees are impressive to say the least as they include a chief of police, a social worker at an elementary school, the head of a civic association, a chaplain with the police department, a teacher and other community leaders that dedicate themselves to making our town a great place to live work and raise a family.”
This year’s honorees were: Miguel Bermudez, Chief of Police for the Village of Freeport; Karina Bruno, a Social Worker in the Clara H. Carlson Elementary School in Elmont; Rita Cavanagh head of the Baldwin Civic Association’s beautification committee; Reverend Derek Garcia, Chaplain of the Nassau County Police Department; Olga Moreno-Hernandez, member of the Hempdale Civic Association and founder of a mentoring program at Northern Parkway School in Uniondale; Gloria Del Carmen Reyes Oliver, a retired Spanish Language teacher and volunteer at Sacred Heart Church in Island Park; Veronica Ortiz, Five Towns Community Center’s Summer Youth Employment Program Coordinator; and Yndiana Seltzer, member of the Board of Directors of the Hispanic Brotherhood of Rockville Centre.
Silvana Diaz, owner, and publisher of Noticia, a Spanish-language newspaper, delivered the keynote address and received Hempstead Town’s Hispanic Heritage Award in 2014.
The IKARUS Gallery Cultural Program also presented a Latino art exhibit entitled “Uniting Nations for a Culture of Peace” in the lobby of Hempstead Town Hall. The display featured original paintings, drawings, and photography from local Latino artists.
“As the diversity of our residents continues to expand, it is important to recognize their accomplishments and applaud them as they enhance and enjoy the quality of life our town offers,” concluded Santino.