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Joan Kent

The Port Washington Library Foundation announces its Second Inspiration Gala: A Celebration of Progress and Ideas. The event will take place Saturday, Oct. 1 at the Port Washington Yacht Club.

Dr. Irwin Kellner, chief economist, North Fork Bank and Augustus B. Weller distinguished chair of Economics, Hofstra University, will be honored with the Corporate Leadership Award. Community Leadership Awards will be presented to Joan Gay Kent and the Honorable Leonard Wurzel, mayor, Village of Sands Point.

Leonard Wurzel

For further information or for information on sponsorship opportunities, please call 883-4400, Ext. 180.

Dr. Irwin Kellner is the author of Hofstra University's Economic Report. Dr. Kellner is also chief economist for CBS Market-Watch, the leading interactive financial news website.

Dr. Irwin Kellner

Previously, he was chief economist for Chase Manhattan's Regional Bank, and before that, chief economist for both Chemical and Manufacturers Hanover, its predecessor organizations.

Widely quoted in the print media as well as the author of many articles dealing with economics, business and banking, Dr. Kellner frequently addresses groups of business people and community leaders, and appears regularly on Cablevision's News 12 Long Island, CBS radio and television, as well as other programs both here and abroad.

Dr. Kellner belongs to several pro bono boards, including the North Shore Health System and the Don Monti Memorial Research Foundation. In academia, he is a member of the board of advisers of Touro College's School of Health Sciences and the Greenwich Institute for American Education. In the public sector, Dr. Kellner serves as Chairman of Nassau County Executive Thomas Suozzi's Council of Economic Advisers. Previously, he was a member of New York State Comptroller H. Carl McCall's Economic Advisory Committee, New York City's Economists Roundtable, the New York District Advisory Council of the Small Business Administration Region II, and the Long Island Regional Transportation Advisory Committee of the New York State Senate.

Dr. Kellner is also a member of several professional organizations. A native New Yorker, he received his B.A. and M.A. in economics from Brooklyn College, and his Ph.D. in economics from The New School for Social Research. Dr. Kellner is the recipient of many awards. He lives in Port Washington, where he serves on the Village Planning Board.

Joan Gay Kent is president of the Cow Neck Peninsula Historical Society, which operates two historic house/museums on the Port Washington Peninsula and conducts educational programs for children and adults. She is the historian for the Town of North Hempstead and a member of its Historic Landmarks Preservation Commission. She is also a member of the Port Washington Library Foundation.

Mrs. Kent served on the board of the Port Washington Public Library from 1975 to 1995 and was board president from 1983-1995. She says, "I firmly believe the best way of furthering one's educational or career goals, is through the regular use of a library card."

A former weekly newspaper and business magazine editor and advertising copywriter, Mrs. Kent has written many articles on Long Island history. She is the author of Discovering Sands Point, published in 2000. She contributed a number of Nassau County entries to the just-published Encyclopedia of New York State (Syracuse University, 2005). She recently oversaw the production of a video celebrating the 10th Anniversary of the Sands Point Village Club. She credits the Port Washington Public Library's Local History Collection as being a valuable reference source.

Active in civic and historic preservation matters, Mrs. Kent is a member of the Friends of Long Island's Heritage, the Nassau County Historical Society, the North Hempstead Historical Society, and the Society for the Preservation of Long Island Antiquities, the Shelter Island Historical Society, the Preservation League of the State of New York, the League of Women Voters, the American Association of University Women and the Lecture Committee of the Manhasset Bay Yacht Club. She is past chairman of the Historic Landmark Preservation Commission of the Incorporated Village of Sands Point.

Mrs. Kent is related to several old Long Island families. (Her great-uncle Cornelius Remsen served as Supervisor of the Town of North Hempstead from 1917 to 1929.) She is a lifelong resident of the North Shore. She is a graduate of Manhasset High School and Colby College. She has lived in Port Washington since 1960.

She was married to the late Stephen R. Kent of Sands Point.

Mayor Leonard Wurzel was born in Philadelphia in 1918. He graduated from Washington and Jefferson College in 1939, and earned a M.B.A. from Harvard University in 1941. He was drafted into the United States Army as a private on September 18, 1941 and served until 1946. In Infantry from 1941 to 1943, Wurzel rose to the rank of Corporal at Camp Wheeler, Macon, Georgia. He attended Officers Candidates School in February 1943 in The Adjutant General's Department, and was discharged as captain after two years overseas as an Assistant Adjutant General in England, France and Germany, in the U.S. Theatre Headquarters. In France he was awarded the European-African, Middle Eastern Medal with one Battle Star, and was awarded the Bronze Star Medal for meritorious service in connection with military operations from January 17, 1944 to May 8, 1945. Mayor Wurzel was employed by Loft Candy Corporation from 1946, serving as president from 1957 to 1964. He founded Calico Cottage Candies, Inc. in 1964 and retired in 1992. He was president of Retail Confectioners International and the Association of Manufacturers of Confectionery and Chocolate. Listed in Who's Who in America since 1959, Wurzel moved to Sands Point from Manhattan in 1953 with his wife Elaine and sons Mark and Larry.

He was a member of the Sands Point Village Board of Zoning Appeals from 1974 to 1981, serving as chairman from 1976 to 1981, and as trustee from 1981 to 1989. In 1989, he was elected mayor.


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