The Queens Interagency Council on Aging, a boroughwide coalition of over 100 senior service organizations and individuals catering to senior adults, will celebrate its 44th anniversary year on March 19 with a gala buffet dinner and awards ceremony, honoring two elected officials and a rehabilitation institute.
According to QICA Executive Director Bruce Cunningham, the evening will be a “time to celebrate with the council’s network of colleagues, friends, professionals, seniors, and elected officials and help raise program funds.”
Councilmembers Paul Vallone (D-Bayside) and Daneek Miller (D-St. Albans) will each be presented with the Rose Kryzak Legislative Award, named for the former QICA board member and lobbyist for rights of the elderly, in recognition of their leadership in championing the cause of older adults and sustaining essential services for seniors.
“I am honored to partner with an organization that provides such critical resources to seniors throughout the borough of Queens,” Miller said. “QICA is a cornerstone for our seniors and it has served dutifully to maintain and enhance their quality of life. I look forward to accepting this award on behalf of the seniors in Southeast Queens and District 27.”
Vallone called the recognition “a testament to the over 20 years I’ve spent serving and protecting our city’s senior population as an elder law attorney.”
As Council member and chairman of the Subcommittee on Senior Centers, Vallone said, he has “the opportunity to continue fighting for the needs of our seniors at City Hall, and I look forward to working with my colleagues to ensure we do all we can to support the health and well-being of our aging population.”
Also slated to be honored is the Parker Jewish Institute for Health Care and Rehabilitation in New Hyde Park, which will receive the Leon Von Holden Advocacy Award for sustained commitment to seniors’ health and well-being. Von Holden was a former QICA member who served at the same time as Kryzak, in the 1960s and 1970s, according to Cunningham.
To arrive at the honorees, Cunningham said the council’s board members went through “a process of voicing names for people we feel are worthy,” adding, “It’s important for people to be acknowledged for their commitment and to keep Rose’s name alive.”
Tickets for the gala, which is open to the public and will take place from 5:30 to 7 p.m. at Queens Community House in the Kew Gardens Community Center, located at 80-02 Kew Gardens Road, are $50 apiece, but are nearly sold out. Up-to-date information on availability can be had by calling QICA at (718) 268-5954.
Anyone wishing to help support QICA’s activities may still purchase a display ad in the commemorative journal. Ads run from $75 to $750 each and may be ordered by calling QICA. The deadline to place an ad is March 6.
The group meets each month, and members of the public are welcome.
“We’re putting on monthly programs that fulfill the needs of seniors,” Cunningham said. “We’re honoring people who carry the flame into the future.”