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Honor Roll / Recognizing the accomplishments of Western New Yorkers

The Children's Guild Foundation has elected new officers and directors. Wendy T. Stahlka is the new chairwoman of the board of directors of the foundation, a philanthropic organization funding health care, education, research and therapeutic recreation programs and services for children with special needs and their families. Also taking office: vice chairman, John H. Edholm Sr.; treasurer, Robert L. Lupica; and secretary, Colleen A. Fahey.

Elected to a three-year term on the board of directors, in addition to Stahlka and Lupica, are Susan G. Koessler, Margaret M. Zak and William J. Williamson Jr.

The Children's Guild Foundation awards grants to nonprofit organizations within the eight counties of Western New York, providing opportunities and services for children with medical, behavioral, developmental, learning and mental health issues. In addition, the foundation supports medical research projects in the areas of pediatric developmental disabilities and rehabilitative medicine.


John Buttino has been elected to a third term as chief of the Eggertsville Hose Company. Other officers elected to serve the volunteer company include First Assistant Fire Chief Brian Multerer; Second Assistant Fire Chief Kiel Gentry; fire captains, Jeffrey Gilson, Brandon Peters and Michael Flynn; fire lieutenants, Justyn Moore, Ryan Gerevics, Jeffrey Yap and Donald Page; Angela Stark, captain of EMS; and Ryan MacDougall, lieutenant EMS.

Patrick Galvin was elected to his second term as president. Other executive officers are Vice President David Balduf, Recording Secretary Stephan Hodges, Corresponding Secretary Rick Cumpston, and Treasurer Robert Brand. James Day was elected to the board of directors. James McDonald was re-elected as sergeant-at-arms.


The service center of Meals on Wheels for Western New York has been dedicated to Richard J. Gehring, the former agency president.

Gehring served as president of the organization from 1978 to 2008, when more than 19 million meals were home-delivered to elderly and special-needs residents of Erie County.

During a recent dedication ceremony at 100 James E. Casey Drive, a plaque was unveiled.

"Richard inspires the community to serve the homebound with passion," said Benjamin A. Gair III, the organization's chief executive officer.

Gehring still volunteers on a regular basis, delivering meals in the City of Buffalo. He advocates for senior nutrition programs nationally and is involved with Meals on Wheels Association of America.


The Police Athletic League of Buffalo presented its 2010 Commitment to Youth awards at its recent fundraising auction.

Russell J. Salvatore, of Russell's Steaks, Chops & More, was recognized for his philanthropic contribution to youth while Kathy and Tom Franczyk received the award for dedication and service to youth.

The awards were presented by Kathleen M. Masiello and Buffalo Mayor Byron W. Brown, co-chairmen of PAL. Susan M. Gonzalez, executive director of the Police Athletic League, noted that PAL serves youth of the Buffalo area with its basketball and baseball leagues, summertime Cops 'n Kids clinics in golf and tennis, a Learn To Skate program in the winter months, programs at the seven City of Buffalo community centers, a boxing program, along with events such as the Gus Macker 3-on-3 Basketball Tournament, the Pastor-Cooper Basketball Tournament, the Mayor's Holiday Hoops competition, while assisting in the Mayor's Summer Reading Challenge and the upcoming New Year's Eve Ball Drop in downtown Buffalo.


The Lancaster Volunteer Ambulance Corps has elected Chester Popiolkowski as president of its board of directors. Other officers are: vice president, Jeff Bono; secretary, Joe Sledz; treasurer, Nancy Franjoine; director, Amanda Popiolkowski; director of maintenance, Tim Marshall; and director of operations, Greg Jankiewicz. They will be formally sworn in at the corps' banquet in February. The Lancaster Volunteer Ambulance Corps serves the town of Lancaster and villages of Lancaster and Depew. Its volunteer and paid EMTs and paramedics respond annually to more than 3,000 emergencies.