Suffolk Times People of the Year (from left) Public Servant of the Year: Ted Webb; Person of the Year: Jeff Heidtmann; Business People of the Year: Greenport Harbor Brewery’s Rich Vandenburgh and John Liegey; Sports Person of the Year: Matt Litchhult; Educator of the Year: Phillip “Skip” Munisteri and Northforker.com Person of the Year: Holly Browder. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch)
The Suffolk Times hosted a reception Thursday evening to honor its 2014 People of the Year.
The annual event was held at Martha Clara Vineyards in Riverhead for the first time and featured video presentations on each of this year’s recipients. (more…)
In 2014, Robert Frey celebrated his 85th birthday. He also celebrated his 64th wedding anniversary in October. There were family birthdays, too — those of his children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. He celebrated Christmas and Thanksgiving.
But he would have missed all those celebrations, all those days, if it hadn’t been for Jeff Heidtmann. (more…)
Scenic corridors, fine wine and farm-fresh produce are enjoyed by locals and tourists alike. They provide the backdrop for and help define life on the North Fork — and are testaments to the area’s rich agricultural history. But beyond all the beauty and nostalgia, farming is a business. And it’s a tough and dirty business, one that’s under constant threat from forces both natural and man-made.
For 26 years, Joseph Gergela, executive director of the Long Island Farm Bureau, has worked to protect the farmer and, to the best of his ability, help the industry thrive. Last year, he decided to retire. Because of his lifelong passion, leadership and devotion to the North Fork’s farming community, Mr. Gergela is the recipient of The Suffolk Times’ first-ever Lifetime Achievement Award. (more…)
Considering it worked for Kevin Costner in “Field of Dreams,” Greenport Harbor Brewing Co. co-owners Rich Vandenburgh and John Liegey figure it can work for them as well. In fact, it already has. (more…)
Jeff Heidtmann and the man he rescued, Robert Frey, pose for photos last January, when they were reunited for the first time after Mr. Heidtmann pulled the older man from the icy waters of a canal behind the neighbors’ Southold homes. Mr. Frey has no memory of falling in or being pulled from the canal. (Credit: Paul Squire)
A tradition that stretches back nearly three decades continued this year with the Suffolk Times’ annual People of the Year awards.
On a misty May morning, a group of Southold Elementary School fourth-graders lined up outside, peered into the distance and waited for the arrival of their beloved teacher, Phillip “Skip” Munisteri.
The students had been put to a challenge. Together, they managed to read more than 80 books in 80 days. In return, Mr. Munisteri was obliged to make good on his promise of biking more than 40 miles from his Setauket home to the Oaklawn Avenue school — rain or shine.
It was a challenge that exemplified the nature of Mr. Munisteri’s fourth grade classroom, where he creates an environment in which his students aren’t simply taught and assessed but challenged and motivated to grow academically, as individuals and as a community. (more…)
From steering government committees to filling in as interim director of the Oysterponds Historical Society, Ted Webb of Orient steps up to the plate when he sees an opportunity to help his community. Over the years he’s been part of more than a dozen nonprofit, government and educational organizations. He remains active with most of them.