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Honor Roll / Recognizing the accomplishments of Western New Yorkers

Frank Centinello, a 2000 graduate of Buffalo's Hutchinson-Central Technical High School, now a graduate student at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, recently went to Washington, D.C., to seek congressional support for a robust, NASA-led human space exploration program, on behalf of Citizens for Space Exploration. The Bay Area Houston Economic Partnership's Aerospace Advisory Committee sponsored Centinello.

Centinello and other CSE travelers went to 355 congressional offices, noting the importance of the space program in light of an earlier announced cancellation of NASA's Constellation Program, which would have returned humans to the moon and possibly taken them to Mars and beyond.

"Human space exploration is the most important journey our species will ever embark upon," said Centinello, who majors in aerospace engineering and geophysics.

"It is, therefore, an imperative to ensure our survival and the inspiration of our youth."

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The newly formed Development Advisory Board for the Sisters of Mercy New York, Pennsylvania met recently for the first time in Buffalo's Mercy Center. The advisory board assists the Sisters of Mercy in efforts to continue their mission and ministries. Board members are: Sister Nancy Hoff, community president; Sister Peggy Gorman, community chief development officer; Susan Vertosick; Elizabeth Kolber; Mary Daly, board chairwoman; Lawrence Vetter; Richard Finley; J. Thomas Briody; Ellen Koessler; Mary Temple; Lawrence Dalzell; and Bernadine Savarino.

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The John R. Oishei Foundation has announced that Edward F. "Ted" Walsh Jr. has been elected to its board of directors.

His awards include the 2008 Philanthropists of the Year by the Alexis de Tocqueville Society.

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Results of a trauma-mortality study conducted by University at Buffalo emergency-medicine physicians were presented earlier this month at the 2010 Society for Academic Emergency Medicine Annual Meeting in Phoenix.

The doctors found that trauma patients without insurance are more likely to die of their injuries from auto accidents and gunshot wounds than privately insured patients with similar injuries, in an analysis of 193,804 patients from 649 facilities.

In addition, they found that Medicaid patients who were injured in motor vehicle accidents had a lower death rate than those with private insurance, indicating that factors other than the level of financial remuneration for medical services are influencing trauma outcomes.

Patients covered by any of the insurance plans studied -- Medicaid, Medicare, private and managed-care organizations like HMOs -- had better mortality rates for all injuries than people without insurance, the analysis showed.

Dr. Dietrich Jehle, professor of emergency medicine and "first author" on the study, says these findings suggest that the causes of this difference are many and probably are not based just on quality of care.

"Generally we don't know a trauma patient's insurance status when we treat them initially in the emergency department, which makes us ask if there are differences in these populations other than the delivery of care," Jehle said.

Kris Attwood, a UB biostatistics graduate student, and Seth Gemme, a UB medical student, also contributed to the study.

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Hundreds of exhibitors displayed their best work for the Allentown Art Festival last weekend, and those judged the best were awarded the following prizes:

The Allentown Village Society, sponsor of the festival, awarded prizes in a number of categories, including Best of Show. Jody Ziehm won that honor, along with $1,000.

Other winners:

Purchase -- Shirley Walker, $1,000.

In the following categories, winners received $675; second-place winners, $475; and third-place winners, $275:

Painting (Realistic) -- First place, Jin Sheng Song; second, Tony Mauro; third, Anne Vaclavik; honorable mention, Arlen Withey.

Painting (Abstract) -- First place, John Mubiru; second, Ilania Stangler; third, Hyacinth Manning; honorable mention, Alida K. Meyer.

Watercolor (Realistic) -- First place, E. Jane Stoddard; second, Kathleen S. Giles; third, Bill Mowson; honorable mention, Kathleen E. Dworak.

Watercolor (Abstract) -- First place, Joan Hambleton; second, Marjorie Norton; third, Linda Lucas; honorable mention, Bob Lehman.

Drawing/Graphics -- First place, James Skvarch; second, Kathleen McDonnell; third, David Oster; honorable mention, John Furches.

Sculpture -- First place, Alexander J. Snyder; second, J. Brian Pfeiffer; third, Aleksandr Sizov; honorable mention, Suzanne Molnat Goad.

Photography -- First place, Jane Axman-Hyner; second, Charles Waldman; third, Scott Matyjaszek; honorable mention, J. Matthew Kianka.

Mixed Media -- First place, Xiao Xia Zhang; second, Craig Larotonda; third, Christopher Stangler; honorable mention, David Manny.

In the following categories, winners received $625; second-place winners, $425 and third-place winners, $250:

Clay -- First place, Ronald Lederer; second, Hodaka Hasebe; third, Pat McCaffrey; honorable mention, Timothy See.

Glass/Acrylic -- First place, Jason Ryner; second, Phillip Austin; third, Randy Kuntz; honorable mention, Gabriel Cole.

Jewelry -- First place, Douglas Brandow; second, Jens Bisgaard; third, Geri Lynn; honorable mention, Patricia Cancilla.

Creative Crafts (Hard) -- First place, Howard Miller; second, Linda Tong; third, Steven Levine; honorable mention, Eric Arcese.

Creative Crafts (Soft) -- First place, Richard Thompson; second, Debra Murray; third, Amos Amit; honorable mention, Becky Peretz.

e-mail: lcontinelli@buffnews.com