Previous Distinguished Service Award Recipients
The 2020/21 recipient of the NYS AHPERD Distinguished Service Award is Margaret Robelee
Margaret received both her bachelors and masters in Physical Education from SUNY Cortland. She is currently an Adjunct Lecturer and Supervisor of Student Teachers at SUNY Cortland. Margaret has been the President of the Southeastern Zone and co-president of the Technology section. She was the chairperson for Teacher of the Year awards Committee, a member of the Joy of Effort awards committee and the mascot committee. As a member of Southeastern Zone Margaret has been an eager volunteer for the; Boxball Tournament, Co-Ed Volleyball Tournament, Election Day Conference, Manhattanville Care to Share, and Get Moving NY local events just to name a few. She will begin her three-year presidential rotation as NYS AHPERD president-elect in 2022. At the national level Margaret is a national trainer for OPEN, has presented at the SHAPE America convention and has been a part of many online presentations and webinars. Throughout her career she has authored and co-authored for PE Central Publications, SHAPE America, and S & S Worldwide Blog Publications. She was also a member of the authoring group for the 2020 New York State Physical Education Learning Standards. A colleague wrote, “Professionally she is organized, dedicated, conscientious and empathetic. It is clear that Margaret does all she does for the benefit of others, her family, students, fellow professionals, and does not seek praise or honors.” President Seymour, it is my privilege to present to you the recipient of the Distinguished Service Award, Margaret Robelee.
The 2019 recipient of the NYS AHPERD Distinguished Service Award is Cathy Houston-Wilson.
Cathy received her degrees from Manhattan College, SUNY College at Brockport, and her doctorate from Oregon State University. She is the chair of the Department of Kinesiology, Sport Studies and Physical Education at the College at Brockport. Cathy facilitates a Distinguished Alumni Lecture Series, is president-elect of the Faculty Senate, and initiated a mentor program for new faculty. She has been a productive scholar, having published over 26 articles in journals and book chapters, and co-authored the book Strategies for Inclusion: Physical Education for Everyone. Cathy's involvement with NYS AHPERD spans 34 years and started as an undergraduate student. She has served in numerous leadership positions and is active in the Central Western Zone. At the state level, Cathy served as Association secretary, president of the Higher Education Section and the Adapted Physical Education & Sport Section. She chaired the Bylaws & Operating Codes Committee, served on the Publications Committee, and is a member of the Adapted Physical
Education Activity Position Paper Writing Team. Cathy also served as NYS Coordinator for Physical Best for 24 years. Her leadership and service has earned her numerous awards, including the Amazing Person Awards for three NYS AHPERD Sections, namely HigherEducation/Professional Preparation, Future Professionals and Adapted Physical Education & Sport. The College at Brockport awarded Cathy with the Chancellors Award for Excellence in Faculty Service and her alma mater, Manhattan College, awarded her their prestigious Distinguished Service Award. Her colleagues wrote, "Cathy is a tireless advocate and scholar in her profession. Her dedication flows effortlessly into her classes, her exceptional mentorship of students, and her consistent effort to engage faculty and young professionals into the professional community. She has a unique personality that enables her to be an extremely effective and affective leader." It is a privilege to present the recipient of the 2019 Distinguished Service Award, Dr. Cathy Houston-Wilson.
The 2018 recipient of the NYS AHPERD Distinguished Service Award is Dr. Alisa James.
Alisa received her degrees from Illinois State University, University of Illinois, and her doctorate in physical education pedagogy from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. She is the Associate Dean of the School of Education, Health and Human Services at The College at Brockport. Alisa has served in numerous leadership positions in NYS AHPERD and is active in the Central Western Zone. At the state level, she served as Association president, president of the Higher Education Section, and as a member of our board of directors. Alisa was the advisor to the Future Professionals Section for seven years; she envisioned and brought to fruition the first Teacher Educator Academy for higher education professionals; she has served on the Jay B. Nash Outstanding Major Awards Committee and chaired the Physical Education Grading Committee. As Association president, Alisa coordinated and served as one of the primary writers of the NYS AHPERD Curriculum and Assessment Guidance Document. She has been a productive scholar, having published over 40 articles in a variety of journals, authored and co-authored books, as well as contributing articles to NYS AHPERD newsletters. Her recognitions include the NYS AHPERD Professional of the Year Award, the Shape-America Teacher Educator of the Year in 2018, the Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Teaching, and was honored to be nominated for the Council for Advancement and Support of Education's U.S. Professor of the Year Award. A colleague wrote, "It is my belief that to distinguish oneself in the teaching profession, an individual must be enthusiastic and inspirational; have extensive content knowledge, be an exceptional communicator and have leadership abilities, along with a reputation for high standards. Alisa truly possesses these qualities in abundance!" President Garbarino, it is my privilege to present to you the recipient of the 2018 Distinguished Service Award, Alisa James.
The 2017 recipient of the NYS AHPERD Distinguished Service Award is Jason Quitoni.
The 2017 recipient of the NYS AHPERD Distinguished Service Award is Jason Quitoni. Jason began his career at Mamaroneck High School. Over the course of nearly thirty years, he was a physical education teacher, district department chairperson for health and physical education, and interim athletic director for Longwood Central Schools. He finished his career at Hofstra University as a physical education instructor and advisor. Jason has been an active member of NYS AHPERD for most of his career. He is a NYS AHPERD past president and was a member of the board of directors. At the Zone level Jason served as Suffolk Zone President and is a former vice president of the Secondary Physical Education Section. He currently serves as a member of the Foundation board of trustees and is cochair of the Annual Ken Demas Future Professionals Leadership Academy. He has presented at numerous local, state and national conferences and volunteers at the NYS AHPERD annual conference. Jason was honored with the NYS AHPERD Secondary Physical Education Teacher of the Year Award, the Suffolk Zone and the Future Professionals Section Amazing Person Award, the Suffolk Zone Service Award, the Mark Cooper "Excellence in Teaching Award" and the Longwood Athletic Department Service Award. In nominating Jason for the Distinguished Service Award, his lifelong friend Ken Demas stated, "Jason's professional contribution has been his unique style of leadership: self- deprecating, self-assured, unselfish and courageous. I include courageous because Jason gives permission to those around him to take chances, to speak up, to challenge what has been done in the past and to freely ask questions. I believe he has contributed greatly by empowering another generation of teachers and leaders. He gives of himself without reservation and with full knowledge that he serves a profession he loves." President Wolfe, it is my honor to present to you the recipient of the 2017 Distinguished Service Award, Jason Quitoni.
The 2016 recipient of the NYS AHPERD Distinguished Service Award is Lisa Sherman.
The 2016 recipient of the NYS AHPERD Distinguished Service Award is Lisa Sherman. Lisa has been a physical education and health education teacher in the White Plains Public School District for the past 21 years. She was an Adjunct Professor at Hofstra University and is a cooperating teacher in health education. Lisa is a dedicated, active member of NYS AHPERD. Her commitment to our Association started as an undergraduate student at SUNY Cortland where she had the distinction of being the first person to officially serve NYS AHPERD as a Future Professional's Section President. Her active involvement continued and she is now a past president of the Association and currently serving her second term on the Board of Directors. During her presidential rotation, Lisa initiated several advocacy projects including, the New York State's Report Card: Health and Physical Education ~ Are We Making the Grade?, an advocacy video used to support quality health and physical education, she traveled to Washington D.C. on two occasions to participate in National Speak Out Day, and was instrumental in organizing the first New York State Speak Out Day. She is a past president of the Southeastern Zone, she served as the Southeastern Zone Conference Director for fifteen years, and she is a co-founder of the Future Professionals Leadership Conference. She spearheads an annual session at this Conference called the Cycle of Leadership. Lisa is a sought after presenter; having shared her ideas at the SHAPE America Conference, at numerous Zone Conferences, at the Future Professionals Leadership Conference, at school board meetings and in her own district. A past president wrote, "Working with Lisa is always a great experience. She is motivated and consistently works hard at everything she does. Lisa has the ability to see the big picture and is always a team player. She has given so much to this profession and never misses a chance to get involved and make a positive difference in the lives of others." Lisa has been honored with the NYS AHPERD Professional of the Year Award, the Southeastern Zone Amazing Person Award, the Health Section Amazing Person Award, the Eastern District Association Student Leadership Award, and the White Plains Middle School PTA Jenkins Award. President Rose it is my privilege to present to you the recipient of the 2016 Distinguished Service Award, Lisa Sherman.
The 2015 recipient of the NYS AHPERD Distinguished Service Award is Catharine Haight.
The 2015 recipient of the NYS AHPERD Distinguished Service Award is Catharine Haight. Cathy received her Bachelor of Science Degree in Health and Physical Education from Ithaca College, her Master of Education Degree in Sports Administration and her Certificate of Advanced Study in Administration from the SUNY Cortland. She is the Assistant Principal and Athletic Director in the Southern Cayuga School District. Cathy has been a long time, active member of NYS AHPERD. In 2003 she served as Association President. She served on the Board of Directors for twelve years including, two years as Chair of the Board. She was the Secondary Section president, Central South Zone president, a member and chair of the Distinguished Service, Professional of the Year Award Committee, and a member of the Teacher of the Year Award Committee. Cathy also served as the NYS AHPERD representative to the Eastern District Association Council for Conventions and Council for Services. She was a Goals 2000 and a PE Profile Turn Key Trainer. In service beyond NYS AHPERD, Cathy served on the Eastern District Teacher of the Year Awards committee, as a NAPSE National Conference program selector, a Running Grant selector and she was a Let's Move in School Kick Off Team Leader. Cathy has been honored with the NYS AHPERD Secondary Physical Education Teacher of the Year Award, The Eastern District Secondary Teacher of the Year Award, the Secondary Physical Education Amazing Person Award, the Central South Zone Amazing Person Award and the National Association for Girls and Women in Sport Pathfinder Award. A colleague said, Cathy is a skilled and accomplished professional; she works tirelessly for the benefit of others, continuously sharing her knowledge and experience. When asked to serve, she always says yes and NYS AHPERD continues to be the beneficiary of that service. She is honest, she is loyal and she is a humble servant. President James, it is my honor to present to you the recipient of the 2015 Distinguished Service Award, Catharine Haight.
The 2014 recipient of the NYS AHPERD Distinguished Service Award is Dr. Mara Manson.
The 2014 recipient of the NYS AHPERD Distinguished Service Award is Dr. Mara Manson. Mara received her Bachelor of Science Degree in Physical Education from The College at Brockport and her Master of Science Degree in Health Education from Hofstra University. She received her doctorate from Teachers College, Columbia University. Mara began her career as a Physical Education Teacher in Queens and is presently an Associate Professor in Physical Education at Adelphi University. Mara has served NYS AHPERD in numerous ways. She is a current member of the Board of Directors and is a past President of the Association, she has been a member of the Executive Council as President of the Nassau Zone and the Higher Education/Professional Preparation Section. Mara has been a member of the Distinguished Service Award and Professional of the Year Award Committee, the Jay B. Nash Awards Committee and the Bernard E. Hughes Awards Committee. Mara was a Conference Program Planner for the Higher Education Section and an Assistant Conference Director at the 2007 NYS AHPERD Conference. She served as a Nassau Zone Program Planner, Mini Grant Chairperson and she was a Physical Education Profile Trainer. Mara developed and maintains the NYS AHPERD mobile app, she spearheaded the initiative to create the Online Institute for Professional Development and she served as a member and chair of the ad hoc advocacy committee that developed the advocacy public service announcement video. In addition, she coordinated and chaired the committee to write the sample SLO's for physical education. In the Nassau Zone, Mara is the membership and recruitment chairperson, the conference program planner and the program registrar. She served on the Eastern District Association Social Justice Committee, the By-laws Committee and was the Assistant to the EDA Conference Director in 2010. She has numerous publications to her credit and has presented at local, state, regional, national and international conferences. Mara's awards include the Nassau Zone Amazing Person, The Young Scholar Award from the International Association of Physical Education and Higher Education, she presented the Gerry D'Agostino Memorial Lecture at The College at Brockport and the Ron Feingold Lecture Series at our conference. A colleague and former NYS AHPERD Distinguished Service Award recipient said "Mara is an energetic, dynamic, caring and thoughtful person who is an exceptional leader. Her resume is beyond impressive, she is a great innovator with exceptional vision, tireless commitment and unwavering dedication. She is a model of service for her students, her colleagues and her university. Her service to NYS AHPERD is beyond reproach and she has earned the trust and respect of her NYS AHPERD family" President Mergardt, it is my privilege to present you the recipient of the 2014 Distinguished Service Award, Dr. Mara Manson.
The 2012 recipient of the NYS AHPERD Distinguished Service Award is Ed Woolston.
The 2012 recipient of the NYS AHPERD Distinguished Service Award is Ed Woolston. Ed received his bachelors degree in health and physical education from The College At Brockport, his masters of science degree in education from SUNY Potsdam and his Administrative Certification from St. Lawrence University. Ed was the Director of Health, Physical Education and Athletics for 30 years at Colton-Pierrepont Central School, retiring in 1999. He served as the Town of Colton and Colton-Pierrepont Central School's Director of Summer Recreation Programs for 20 years. Ed was the Section 10 representative on the NYS Public High School Central Committee for 20 years, and for 6 years he served on the Safety Committee. He has been involved with NYS AHPERD activities throughout his career and continues to serve the Association in retirement. He was a member of the NYS AHPERD Board of Directors for six years, serving as the board chair for three years, regularly traveling from Florida to attend meetings. He has been both the Retirees Section and Northern Zone President, a Turnkey Trainer for Goals 2000 and he organized many Zone and county staff development days. Since his retirement, Ed has volunteered at the NYS AHPERD Conference registration desk each year. He has received numerous awards including the Northern Zone Service Award, the Council of Administrators Special Service Award, Northern Zone Amazing Person Award and the Retiree Section Amazing Person Award. One of Ed's fellow Board of Directors colleagues said "He is a true leader in every sense of the word. You will not find a more dedicated, zealous, committed and good natured person. He truly understands people and demonstrates sincere care and concern for everyone he comes into contact with." Ed has dedicated his life to his profession, as a teacher, coach, administrator and volunteer, he is always willing to go the extra mile. President Quitoni, it is my privilege to present to you the recipient of the 2012 NYS AHPERD Distinguished Service Award, Ed Woolston.
The 2011 recipient of the NYS AHPERD Distinguished Service Award is Tom Howard.
The 2011 recipient of the NYS AHPERD Distinguished Service Award is Tom Howard. Tom received his bachelor's degree in health, physical education and recreation from Southern Connecticut State College, his master's of science degree in health education from Adelphi University and his Administrative Certification from Long Island University. Tom was the Director of Physical Education and Athletics in the Farmingdale School District before retiring in 2003. He is presently an Adjunct Professor at Adelphi University. Tom has been the Recording Secretary of the Section VIII High School Athletic Association, President of Conference III Modified Athletic Council, a member of both the State Chemical Health Committee and the NYSAAA Professional Development Committee. In service to NYS AHPERD, Tom has been a member of the Jay B. Nash Awards Committee, he served as Chair of the Teacher of the Year Awards Committee and the Distinguished Service/Professional of the Year Awards Committee and he continues to serve as Chair of the Necrology Committee. Tom was the Secretary of the Executive Council for six years, he served as President of the Association in 2005-2006 and was on the Board of Directors for six years serving as secretary. He has written numerous articles for NYS AHPERD Newsletters; was the NYS Representative to the EDA Council for Services in 2004 and has been on the EDA Future Professionals Mini Conference Committee since 2009. Tom has been recognized with a Bay Shore High School yearbook dedication, West Babylon High School Outstanding Teacher Blue/Gold Award, CYO Man of the Year for Long Island, the COA Zone Achievement Award, NYS AAA Zone Recognition Award, March of Dimes Golden Apple Award for Educational Excellence, NYSUT Friend of Education Award, the Adelphi University Alumni Award and the Town of Babylon Aquatics Award. Tom's colleagues shared the following ~ Tom is a consummate professional with an exceptional skill set of knowledge and behaviors. He is highly respected by his peers, within and beyond our organization, his school district and his community. It takes courage, passion, confidence and dedication to take on the many leadership positions in which he has served. Tom is a visionary leader, who exemplifies a commitment to personal and professional excellence. Although, Tom's achievements and accolades are many, he will be most remembered for his loyalty, his enthusiastic leadership, the strength of his character and the intensity of his integrity. President Manson, it is my privilege to present to you the recipient of the 2011 NYS AHPERD Distinguished Service Award, Tom Howard.
Bios for the remaining Distinguished Service Award Recipients are not available.