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Somers Education Foundation Names New Honorees

Steve Rolando Photo Credit: Contributed
Let's Play it Forward members, from left, Tucker Clair, TJ Bonacorso, JT Olert, John Lombardi, Thomas Pasyanos, Chris Abatecola, Ryan Wilson, Anthony Lombardi, Dan Rannekleiv and Luigi Olinto. Photo Credit: Contributed
Jim Chisholm Photo Credit: Contributed
Rob Heller Photo Credit: Contributed

SOMERS, N.Y. -- The Somers Education Foundation will induct three individuals and one organization into the SEF Hall of Fame for their contributions to furthering education and enhancing the lives of students.

The induction will take place at SEF's Casino Night at Putnam County Golf Course on Saturday, April 18, from 7 p.m.-midnight. The event includes casino-style games, a full reception and dinner, auction and dancing.

Honorees for the event are Jim Chisholm, Rob Heller, Steve Rolando and Let's Play It Forward.

Jim Chisholm has been a consummate and influential Somers community leader, serving in numerous positions, including president of the Somers Lions Club, president of the Somers Chamber of Commerce and chair of the Somers Drug Abuse Prevention Council.

Rob Heller, a local product, has been a dedicated teacher in the Somers Central School District for 40 years. For the last 18 years, he has taught social studies at Somers Middle School. He is passionate about education and has had an indelible impact within and outside the classroom on thousands of students over the years.

Steve Rolando made very significant contributions to Somers and its children during the 18 years he lived in town. He had his greatest impact as a 15-year member of the Somers Education Foundation, in which he served as secretary for three years and then as president for five years. During this time, SEF awarded more than 200 grants and scholarships totaling more than $700,000. His leadership helped SEF grow in both its initiatives and fundraising events and in its ability to award grants that have benefited thousands of students.

Let's Play it Forward is a not-for-profit organization founded by a group of teenagers from Somers and Yorktown Heights in February 2012. Its mission is to collect gently used sports equipment and donate it to children and organizations in need so that all children have the gear necessary to play the sports they love. To date the group has collected more than 21,000 pieces of equipment, and this equipment has been donated to needy children and organizations locally and as far away internationally as Ghana.

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