BLI Graduation Year: 1997
IBM Corporation (semi-retired)
Tell us briefly about yourself and please update your classmates on your personal/professional experiences since graduating from BLI: I’ve lived in Tioga County since graduating from NYU in Manhattan. I’ve worked at IBM for 36 years – starting in Owego and then in Endicott, NY. For the last 12 years, I’ve been in a global HR role in our Learning/Education organization where I do facilitation, leadership coaching and training – for which I have great passion! In June, 2014, I retired from IBM and am fortunate enough to return in a part-time role as a Learning Consultant once again. I live in Owego with my wife of 34 years, Ruthanne. We have three grown children (!!!) who are now on their own and following their own careers.
Favorite books/movies: The most impactful book I have ever read is Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl. As a Nazi Concentration Camp prisoner, Mr. Frankl developed a method for survival by identifying a purpose for life and then immersing himself in that purpose. I have learned that the #1 motivation for getting up in the morning is to the have a purpose in life – to make a positive impact in our world. My favorite movies are Gandhi, Mandela and now Selma. These are amazing stories of how leaders can bring about change through non-violence.
Civic Activities: I am a volunteer mediator at ACCORD, a Center for Dispute Resolution, since 2000. I have also served on their Board of Directors for six years. I’m also involved in my Church – Blessed Trinity and St. Patrick Parishes – and have served as a Pastoral Council member and also as Chair. I also volunteer my time facilitating leadership workshops for adults and youth through Cornell Cooperative Extension of Tioga County.
Interests/Hobbies: In the winter, I enjoy cross-country skiing and ice skating. During the other seasons, I enjoy camping, kayaking and hiking. (I can’t wait to try out my new single kayak that my children bought for me!)
How did your BLI experience motivate you to become more involved in the community? After participating in BLI (… actually called Leadership Broome at the time), I became a volunteer mediator at ACCORD. It has been a very fulfilling experience to work with a non-profit agency that contributes so much to our community.
What was your most memorable BLI activity/moment? Our first-day retreat was most memorable, meeting and getting to know other class members. Oddly enough, one of the members was an alumnus from my old high school in the Bronx, NY. What a small world!
What was the most valuable benefit to you from your BLI experience? My BLI experience confirmed that we have talented, dedicated people living in our community. It also highlighted that many volunteer opportunities exist where we can make a sustainable impact.
What “nugget of wisdom” do you have for your fellow BLI alum? Read a poem called The Dash and reflect on what is important in life.