Claudette has been cooking under the tutelage of various culinary experts for over 35 years. Traveling throughout Europe and Northern Africa, Claudette has honed her skills as a culinary chef. She has spent the last 12 years lovingly feeding the community of Rockaway by holding cooking classes in the intimacy of her family’s kitchen, as well as catering for private parties and special events.
Tom Hughes is the owner of Station Liquors at 260 Beach 116th St. Tom was born in Far Rockaway and grew up on the peninsula. He graduated from Far Rockaway High School. In 1976 Tom’s parents moved to Rockaway Park to be closer to their business on Beach 116th St., Bel-Har Travel. Tom joined the NYC Fire Department in 1981 and worked there for 22 years, mostly in Brooklyn. Tom and his brother Bob, who was also a Fireman, ran the liquor store together on their off-hours. In 2004 Bob left to pursue other interests. Now, Tom runs the store with the help of his long-time employees. Tom is married to Ingrid and they have three children ages 17,16 and 12.
John Lepore was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York. After a career in finance that included stints as the youngest branch manager and officer for a major bank, tax accountant and stock broker, John joined the Allstate Insurance Company in 1989. While scouting various communities for an office location, he was in his own words, “smitten” with the Rockaways, and established his agency in Rockaway Park. Not much long after John made Rockaway his personal home community and relocated to the peninsula. He quickly immersed himself in the community and has been both a financial and personal supporter of basketball, baseball, volleyball teams and sports programs throughout the Rockaways. Understanding the importance of civic responsibility and community support he became a member of various community organizations including the Chamber of Commerce in 1989, right after opening his office. John was appointed to the Board of Directors in 1998 and has served as President and Chairman of the Board, witnessing and being part of Rockaway’s renaissance as a preferred community for business developers, homeowners and residents and was an integral partner in the construction of Tribute Park and the Flight 587 Memorial.
Lana Meli has over 25 years experience in the fashion, bridal, textile and home decor industries. The culmination of that experience has lead to the opening of Lana’s Loft. As a 20 year resident of Rockaway, she thought it about time the women of Rockaway had a local place to shop for unique and beautiful clothes. Lana’s Loft offers a variety of styles in sizes 0 to 3X. They also offer alteration and tailoring services.
Lisa Has lived in Rockaway for over 10 years and the owner of two companies – The Green Dog and Rockapup Inc. She is a Certified Pet Dog Trainer CPDT-KA and Canine Nutritionist. She is an evaluator for the American Kennel Club and an ADPT & IACP member. Lisa has trained many of the dogs here in Rockaway and is committed to improving their quality of life. She holds regular adoption events and training classes and is always looking to how she can better serve the community.
Dr Daniel Mirkin has been practicing Optometry at Mirkin Vision since 1986. He has been associated with the University Optometric Center of NY and is currently on staff at the Joseph P. Addabbo Family Health Center. In addition to providing a thorough vision and eye health examination, Dr Mirkin fits specialty contact lenses, treats eye infections, glaucoma and dry eye. Dr Mirkin was one of the first Doctors of Optometry licensed to treat eye disease and Glaucoma in New York State. Dr Mirkin’s philosophy for patient care is to “give you great vision now and protect your vision for the future.”
Maureen grew up with five sisters in the Belle Harbor house that her sister Brenda continues to call home. After raising four children in Rockaway Park, Maureen became a realtor specializing in selling, renting, and managing homes in Rockaway.
As a life-long resident, she understands the neighborhoods of Rockaway. As an involved community member (Belle Harbor Garden Club, Chamber of Commerce, Committee to Save the Rockaways, Friends of Memorial Circle, Peninsula Hospital Center Community Advisory Committee, Rotary Club of the Rockaways, St. Francis de Sales ABC Quilters), Maureen understands the needs of Rockaway.
Mark Mina was born in Brooklyn, New York and raised in East Islip, Long Island. In 1981, Mark left New York to attend the Music Institute and Technology of California after which he became a freelance section musician traveling throughout the United States and Abroad with major music labels and artists. Mark eventually settled down in Howard Beach, New York to devote his time to being a father. And some thirty years ago, what started as an idea in his basement laundry room with just a small desk has grown over time to become the MSM Corporation which is complied of five production companies, two of the strongest being MSM First Stage and Elite Production Consultants, Inc. Mark’s companies continue to employ well over 100 people and are happy to have maintained that through the recession and recent events with Superstorm Sandy; where along with several other businesses were a part of the Rockaway Boulevard fire which resulted in a total loss for Mark’s business. Mark is now more dedicated than ever to stay in Rockaway and help rebuild the community and revive the local economy.
Bozena has was born in Poland and has is the owner and operator of Eden Polish Market in Rockaway Park. Her market has been a main-stay in the merchant community in Rockaway, offering a wide variety of Polish and European imported foods and products. She has joined the Partnership board in order to help promote the Beach 116th St. corridor and give back to the community that has given her so much.
Liz Hanna is the owner and proprietor of Brown’s Hardware on Beach 116th Street. Brown’s Hardware is a family-owned business that has been serving the Rockaway community for over 30 years. Liz has been a Rockaway resident her whole life and has joined the board, inspired by her neighbors solidarity in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. She believes in the bright future of Beach 116th Street and is dedicated to promoting positive changes in the community.
As the Executive Director of the Queens Chamber of Commerce since December 2007, Jack has the unique opportunity to do what he does best. He is a consummate connector who provides others the information, introductions and influence that nets them interactions, intelligence and impact. In short, your business will benefit from really getting to know Jack.
A lifelong resident of Queens County, Jack deeply believes in giving back to his community. He is a proud member of Community Board #13, SNAP (Services Now for Adult Persons), Lifeline Center for Childhood Development, Bellerose Jewish Center, and the Samuel Field Y Business Council. Jack lives for his amazing family, wife Lori and adult children, Daniel and Cara.