Hello, Brooklyn: Friday, May 6, 2022

Deacon Kevin McCormack
Photo courtesy of Xaverian High School

PRINCIPAL XAVERIAN APPOINTED SUPERINTENDENT OF DIOCESAN SCHOOLS: Deacon Kevin McCormack, principal of the highly regarded Xaverian High Bay Ridge School has been appointed as the new Superintendent of Schools for the Diocese of Brooklyn, effective July 1, Bishop Robert Brennan announced yesterday. Deacon McCormack has been headmaster of Xaverian for the past 15 years and was previously an English and religion teacher at the school. He will replace Dr. Thomas Chadzutko, who is retiring August 31, 2022, after serving as superintendent for the past 18 years.

Deacon McCormack was also a co-host, with Rabbi Joseph Potasnik, of the WABC-NY radio show Religion On The Line from 2006 to 2018. Rabbi Potasnik started the program in 1982.


THE PARISH PANTRY NEEDS DONATIONS: The pantry at St. Athanasius Church in Bensonhurst needs several perishable and non-perishable foods to meet a growing need. The food pantry, which has been around for 20 years, has seen a tenfold increase in community need since the start of the pandemic, now feeding 200 to 250 families every week. Bread, produce and vegetables, pasta, rice, canned fruits, cereals, peanut butter and jelly, canned meats, granola bars and beans are particularly needed at this time.

In the past year, the food pantry has provided food to over 1,000 families and distributed food over 20,000 times! Donations can be dropped off at the Rectory, 2154-61st St. in Bensonhurst. Boy Scout Troop 99 has partnered with the parish for a drive that ends this Sunday.


$2.9 MILLION GUARANTEED FOR TERMINATED MARRIOTT WORKERS: Hundreds of previously laid off Marriott Marquis hotel employees will receive more more than $2.9 million in unpaid severance pay, thanks to a settlement reached with New York Attorney General Letitia James. His investigation found that management at the Marriott Marquis hotel in Times Square had promised non-union employees the same or better benefits than unionized hotel employees; but when more than 800 workers were laid off in March 2021, former non-union employees received less severance pay than those who were union members.

The agreement with Marriott requires the company to pay $2.95 million to more than 500 individual workers who would have received larger severance packages had they been unionized.


PLEA OF GUILTY IN THE EXPRESSION OF A FEDERAL OFFICER: Yesterday in federal court in Brooklyn, defendant John Shortt pleaded guilty before United States District Judge Eric Komitee for assaulting a federal police officer and possessing and brandishing a firearm in a felony of violence related to the attempted robbery of a federal agent outside a nightclub on Utica Ave. in Brooklyn last September. Once convicted, Shortt faces up to 27 years in prison.

Greenaway’s accomplice’s case is pending and he is presumed innocent until proven guilty.


HANDELIN STYLE ORATORIO ABOUT US CONSTITUTION: Two Brooklyn performing arts organizations, Brooklyn’s Grace Chorale (Music Director Jason Asbury) and Vertical Player Repertory (Artistic Director Judith Barnes), are collaborating for the in-person premiere of The Constitution, a secular oratorio by Benjamin Yarmolinsky during the weekend of May 14-15. Recognizing the United States Constitution’s embodiment of 18th-century values ​​and language, composer Ben Yarmolinsky chose a corresponding 18th-century musical style, the Handelian oratorio, as a model for his setting of The Constitution. The work includes choruses, arias and recitatives, similar to The Messiah, but with a recognizable American sound that mixes jazz, blues, folk and gospel rhythms. (Ticket and timetable information is available via: eventbrite.com/e/the-constitution-a-secular-oratorio-tickets-319185090197.)

Grace Chorale of Brooklyn is a 90-member community choir celebrating its 45th anniversary this year and, under the leadership of Music Director Jason Asbury, its membership, musical partnerships and range of repertoire continue to grow in socially relevant programming,


PRE-K DIPLOMA PRICES: Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso announced his administration pre-K-12 graduation awards for the 2022 season. School administrators at pre-K-12 schools across the borough are encouraged to recognize up to three unique students per graduating class: for the awards, named A “Merit” (demonstrating outstanding academic achievement in any subject); “Perseverance” (overcoming challenges to improve their education and/or graduate; and “Brooklyn for All” (demonstrating generosity of spirit among their peers and/or within their Brooklyn community).

School administrators will be able to submit names to the Brooklyn Borough President’s Office for Graduation via an online form at www.brooklyn-usa.org/brooklyngrads until Friday, May 20 at 2 p.m., with rewards mailed to schools the week of June 13.


B’NAI B’RITH OPENS STUDENT ESSAY CONTEST: The 2022 B’nai B’rith International Essay Competition ‘None Shall Be Afraid’ has been launched, inviting students aged 18 to 22 to submit their thoughts on meaningful approaches to addressing the alarming spike in attacks on Jews in the United States, Israel, and around the world, online and in person. For more information on applications, visit https://www.bnaibrith.org/nsba-essay-contest.html; winners will win scholarships and the opportunity to have their essays published.

“No one shall be afraid” was inspired by George Washington’s 1790 letter to the congregants of the Touro Synagogue in Rhode Island, where he quoted Micah 4:4, “Each one shall sit in safety under his own vine and his fig tree and there will be no one to scare him.


$47.6 M ALLOCATED TO GREENWAYS: New York City’s fiscal year 2023 budget allocated $47.6 million for the Brooklyn and Queens greenway improvements described in Destination: Greenways!, a plan of the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation (Parks) in partnership with the New York City Department of Transportation (DOT). Mayor Adams’ major investment in the borough’s outer greenways will fund a total of six projects in Brooklyn and Queens, led by Parks with on-street work by the DOT. In Brooklyn, work will improve waterfront access by constructing new segments of greenways in Leif Ericson Park and reconstructing the existing greenway in part of Shore Road Park.

The investment will fill gaps in existing greenways in central Queens and along Brooklyn’s southwest shore, with a focus on connecting communities to New York City’s greater park system.


BROOKLYN NETS RENOVATED MICCIO CENTER IN RED HOOK: The Brooklyn Nets unveiled their 75th anniversary NBA legacy project – renovating and reopening the fitness room at the Joseph Miccio Community Center, operated by Good Shepherd Services in Red Hook. The Miccio Community Center serves families in NYCHA Red Hook homes with programs throughout the year, providing a safe space for young people to learn and play. The Nets helped renovate the space that was damaged in Hurricane Ida last year, outfitting it with treadmills, a bike machine, weights and stands, benches and other multifunctional equipment, as well as three murals.

The Nets have a long-standing relationship with the Miccio Community Center – dating back to when the team moved to Brooklyn in 2012.


IPS NEWS: MAYOR SUPPORTS BILL TO SUSPEND ALCOHOL LICENSE SUPPLEMENTATION: New York Mayor Eric Adams rose today for New York. small businesses by backing a bill newly introduced by New York City Council members Keith Powers and Justin Brannan that would suspend the city’s liquor license surtax. “Suspending the local tax that these businesses currently pay on liquor licenses is a simple and sensible way to put money back in their pockets and keep their doors open,” Mayor Adams said.