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Honoring Service

Honoring Service

Venture staff from every department and program, program participants, friends and board of directors members, all gathered at the Venture Center on May 26, in a celebration of their comradery and a shared commitment to service. The event, organized by senior staff, Marie Pardi, Debbie Archambault and Lisa Kirrane recognized not only the years of service of their coworkers, but also some of extraordinary work of the past year.

The annual staff recognition ceremony at Camp Venture is a time -honored tradition that trace its origin to the agency’s first Executive Director, Kathleen Lukens and is named for her.

Programs recognized for their extraordinary work were; the Venture Select program program presented by Marie Pardi, and Hibernian House II, presented by Debbie Archambault . Accepting the awards for those programs were Ken Freson and Karyl Hoyt respectively.

Presenting the Kathleen Lukens Award this year was Lisa Hayes on behalf of Julia (Julie) Langdon.  Agency Executive Director Dan Lukens also had a few words for Langdon whom he described as a woman of great personal resource whose involvement with the program participants and staff was extraordinary. “When Hurricane Sandy knocked out the power at the recreation site, under Julie’s leadership, the recreation staff brought the program to the residences along with what ever assistance the programs needed and this is but one example of what she has done and continues to do every day here,” Lukens said.  “ A member of the New York State Bar, Julie has even helped her coworkers with legal issues. And, as I would personally attest from our Town Meeting forum, Langdon is the much beloved by every and all members of the Venture family.”

Awards were also presented for 10 years of service, 15, 20, 25 30 years of service. And, Sue Blanchard, the Venture Industries and Supportive Work program director was honored for her 35 years of commitment to Camp Venture. As Lukens said: “Any organization that has people work 5, 10, 20 or even 30 + years for them could point to that and say, well we must be doing something right but that’s not it for me. I look at all of you and what I see are people that have made a choice and committed to something that is bigger and more important than any of us. You are here because you chose to answer a calling. You are here because you decided to make this mission, your mission and your life.”

In addition to the event organizers, the board of director are also gratefully acknowledged for their involvement and participation. Present for the event were; Paul Whelan, Larry Bate, Jo Hallett Barry Warner, Nancy Clucas-Britcher and John Murphy.

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