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Obituaries
Jean Ann Johnson

Jean Ann Johnson, 82, of Port Washington, died on Sept. 24, 2006.

Born Jean Ann Gautsche, she was the only child of Eugene and Jane. She was born on All Saints Day, Nov. 1, 1923. She had red hair and hazel eyes, and in later years, her red hair earned her the nickname "red." A "clamdigger," Jean spent her entire life in Port Washington - living, working, worshiping, and volunteering her time and talents to the people and causes she loved.

In 1944 she married Earl Johnson from Green Bay, WI. Jean met Earl while he was serving in the air force and stationed at Mitchell Field. During WWII, she trained and served as a voluntary nurses aide. When Earl came home, they began a family. Since she was an only child, Jean set out to have a big family. By some standards, that's what she had - four children - two boys and two girls - Dennis (one of our own Port Washington Police Officers), Barry, Linda and Nancy. Jean was blessed with eight grandchildren and five great-grandchildren, and she loved cooking and gardening.

Jean worked for 30 years in the Baxter Estates branch of the Meadowbrook Bank which later became National Westminster and then Fleet before the office closed. She started as a teller and rose to branch manager and assistant vice president. She was one of the friendly faces of the Baxter Estates branch. If you came into the branch with a problem, Jean would solve it.

In 1987 Jean became the first woman to join the Port Washington Lions Club and a few years later the first woman president of the club. During her years as a Lion, she earned awards for rookie of the year, special achievement, distinguished service, perfect attendance, Lion of the year, and for her special efforts on charities such as the blanket drive. Jean was active in the United Methodist Church of Port Washington, serving as financial secretary for many years.

Jean is survived by Earl, her husband of 62 years, and three of her four children - Dennis, Linda, and Nancy.

Arrangements were made by the Austin F. Knowles Funeral Home, Port Washington.

Anna Prudenti (nee Gilleo), 79, of Port Washington, died on Sept. 24, 2006. Anna was predeceased by her husband Vincent. She is survived by her daughters, Cheri Kelly (John) and Charlotte Totten Olsen (Robert); her grandson John Totten (Mary); and many nieces and nephews. Arrangements were made by the Austin F. Knowles Funeral Home, Port Washington. Mass of Christian Burial celebrated at St. Peter of Alcantara RC Church. Interment Nassau Knolls Cemetery.

Nelson Greenberg was born in Rochester, NY, and after graduating from Syracuse University in 1948, he moved to Manhattan. He served in the Army Air Corps during WWII.

He had an illustrious career in accounting, becoming a partner for Spahr, Lacker & Berke. He lectured in Texas for the State Society of CPAs and after his retirement as a partner he taught at the School of Accounting for C.W. Post and subsequently taught taxes to the officers of West Point in the MBA program.

He spent 10 years as a dedicated trustee for the Village of Port Washington North. At The Community Synagogue in Sands Point, he was a trustee and also served on the Brotherhood Board as a membership chairman.

Nelson sang for many years in the Cancer Care Red Stocking Review. He leaves behind his wife Goldie of 55 years; son Lawrence; daughter Lisa; son-in-law Brad; and grandson Jared.

David G. Salten

David G. Salten, consultant to the president of Hofstra University and former executive vice president and provost of the New York Institute of Technology died on Oct. 1, 2006 at his home in Port Washington from heart related illness at the age of 93.

Known on Long Island as an economic developer for his 20 years of contributed services directing the Nassau County Economic Development Agency, it is his 60-year career in education that defines him. Dr. Salten's educational innovations are reflected today in school models that cover the gamut from nursery to graduate and professional education.

Interviewed a few years ago at an awards ceremony, he claimed his instructional reforms were the high points in his career, but he did say, "From the historical perspective my work in promoting civil rights in American public school systems is the best thing I've done." Salten served as an expert witness in federal landmark school desegregation cases in Little Rock, Baltimore and New Orleans.

Born in New York City, he attended Washington Square College, Columbia University and New York University, from which he received a Ph.D. degree in 1944. He received four honorary doctorates and numerous citations from government, community and business groups for his achievements in two controversial fields: school integration and curriculum reform.

Graduating from college at the age of 19, he joined the newly founded Almay Company as a cosmetic chemist. He also worked as a chemist for the City of New York before leaving the laboratory for the classroom to become a teacher of science at Metropolitan High School. After WWII, as principal of that school, he arranged the purchase for a dollar of a Liberty Ship, the SS John Brown, and its conversion to an operating ship which trained urgently needed maritime officers. Shortly thereafter, he wrote and presented a brief to the New York City Board of Estimate which financed the purchase of an unused school building on W. 46th St. as a house for the new High School of Performing Arts, made famous in popular culture by the movie, Fame.

In 1950, he was appointed City Superintendent of Schools in Long Beach. With the aid of a grant from the Ford Foundation, the Long Beach schools, in cooperation with New York University, implemented Chancellor George Stoddard's "dual progress plan" in four elementary schools, individualizing instruction and advancement through the grades.

Recruited by Thurgood Marshall as an expert witness for the landmark Little Rock School desegregation case, Dr. Salten testified that the presence of eight African-American students in Little Rock High School had not lowered the quality of education. He blamed the disturbances, which led President Eisenhower to send troops to enforce the law, on weak and reactionary local school administrators. These views were upheld in the Supreme Court in a case argued by the United States Solicitor General and Thurgood Marshall (subsequently a Justice of the Supreme Court).

Fired from his 12-year long tenure in Long Beach for his controversial views, Dr. Salten was appointed superintendent of schools for New Rochelle, New York. The school system was in federal receivership after a federal court finding that the public schools had been deliberately and systematically segregated by race. On the day after his appointment, four members of the New Rochelle Board of Education resigned. Dr. Salten developed and implemented a plan that was acceptable to the residents and the Department of Justice. Jurisdiction over the schools was returned to local control. The New Rochelle litigation was the first school desegregation case involving a northern city to reach the Supreme Court. During his tenure in New Rochelle, Dr. Salten wrote a weekly column on education for the Gannett newspapers.

From 1969 to 1990, Dr. Salten served as executive vice president and provost of the New York Institute of Technology. His leadership in innovative program development and effective staff and student recruitment, as well as his emphasis on excellence, resulted in a larger and more vibrant academic community. He was instrumental in expanding the school campuses both in New York City and on Long Island to accommodate and foster this growth.

In lieu of flowers, contributions to the scholarships funds at Hofstra University or the New York Institute of Technology would be appreciated. A memorial service is planned for next month at Hofstra University, Hempstead.

David Salten is survived by his wife, Adrienne O'Brien, his daughters, Phoebe, Cynthia and Melissa, eight grandchildren, and 10 great-grandchildren.


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