Curran hosts annual Women of Distinction luncheon

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More recently, Barbara joined the Wounded Warriors Project. Through this organization she has supplied military hospitals in the Washington, D.C. area with blankets for recovering and wounded service members.

With all she does to help others, Barbara still finds the time to be available for her four children and six grandchildren.

Sister Ruthanne Gypalo

A native of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Sister Ruthanne Gypalo attended her parish school, St. Mary of the Mount, from 1st through 12th-grade before entering the Congregation of the Sisters, Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, in Scranton, Pa. It was there at Marywood College that she received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Elementary Education with a concentration in math in 1969, followed by a Master of Science in Mathematics Education in 1976. Gypalo then spent several years teaching math to middle school students in North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Maryland, New York and New Jersey.

Gypalo holds New York State certification in School Administration/Supervision, which she received after further graduate study at Duquesne University, SUNY Plattsburg and Manhattan College. She first served as principal of St. Aloysius School in Cresson, Pennsylvania, before assuming the same role at St. Raymond’s School in East Rockaway in 1986.

During her time as administrator at St. Raymond’s, she has overseen several changes in the physical plant, curriculum and infrastructure of the school itself. The Language other than English program and the computer program for all students were developed. The kindergarten program changed from half-day to extended day and then to full-day. Most recently, the school offered a full-day pre-K program for interested families. There is a “Before and After Care” program for children in the school, which aims to help working parents with childcare, and there are now Smart Boards in most classrooms.

With all of these advancements, Gypalo believes that her greatest accomplishment has been fostering a real sense of family in St. Raymond’s School by providing an atmosphere of hospitality, caring and warmth.

Emily Webb contributed to this story.

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