Village rings in new year with ‘An Evening of Excellence’


The Lynbrook Chamber of Commerce kicked off the new year in style last week, hosting its annual gala and honoring four community members who have made significant contributions to the village.

The event, dubbed An Evening of Excellence, attracted a crowd of about 120 to the Coral House in Baldwin, including members of the Lynbrook fire and police departments and school district educators. The evening featured dinner and dancing along with the induction of chamber board members.

“At this event, we honored people that have given back to the community,” Michela Argento, the chamber’s executive vice president, said. 

This year’s honorees were Chris Anderson, of Crown Ford; Lt. Anthony Falsitta, of the Lynbrook Police Department; former Fire Chief Chris Kelly; and Benedict Tieniber, of Lynbrook High School, the chamber’s Educator of the Year. Argento noted that all four were active with the chamber as well as with local sports teams.

“It’s great to have everybody in one room, working together, being together just to celebrate these people in the community that give so much of themselves to make Lynbrook a better place,” she said.

Crowd Ford was honored as Business of the Year, while Falsitta was given the Lynbrook Police Award of the Year. Kelly was recognized for his work in the Fire Department, and Tieniber for his “outstanding achievements at Lynbrook High School,” Argento said.

“Benedict Tieniber was nominated for this award because of all his accolades for what he’s done for the students, and he’s just been there for them,” Argento said. “He’s the coach of the middle school wrestling team, middle school baseball team, and his list just goes on and on.”

A number of people posted on Facebook about Tieniber’s impact on the community. Jenny Lengyel wrote, “Great teacher, great guy. Gives 1000% to everything he does at Lynbrook High School. And he does a lot!”

Tieniber is also a member of the Lynbrook Kiwanis Club and an adviser of the high school Key Club, some of whose members came to the gala to support him.

“I can’t think of a more deserving recipient,” the Kiwanians posted on Facebook. “You are an incredible leader and seeing you guide the Lynbrook Key Club to their amazing successes and fund raising is truly incredible.”

Mayor Alan Beach inducted new and returning chamber board members. They included Addison Drummond, of Westco Financial; Cory Hirsch, of CPA Realty; Denise Rogers, of Webster Bank; Eleanor Jobaggy, recording secretary of the chamber; Lloyd Chrein, of; Joe Carusone, of Vincent’s Pizza; Lori McGuinness, of Bristal Assisted Living;; Rhonda Glickman, vice president of sales at Richner Communications. Also, board members AnnMarie Lubrano, Harold Reese and Jeffrey Grenfield did not attend the event, but will be inducted into the 2024 board at a later date.

Argento explained that the members of the chamber’s executive board — President Polly Talbott, Vice President Michela Argento and Treasurer Shirish Mohile — were not honored this year, because they were installed for two-year terms last year.

“The Lynbrook Chamber of Commerce plays a vital role in fostering growth and sustainability for the small businesses within the Incorporated Village of Lynbrook,” State Sen. Patricia Canzoneri-Fitzpatrick posted on Facebook. “I had the pleasure of attending their Evening of Excellence event, during which several outstanding community members were recognized for their unique contributions to Lynbrook and beyond.”

“With the induction of the new board, we have a lot planned for 2024,” Argento said. “We have many events to come this year.” A lot of them, she added, have already been posted on She highlighted a craft fair that is now in the planning stages, car shows starting in June, and Lunch and Learn seminars. The next event will be Beach’s State of Lynbrook speech, on Feb. 7, at the River Mill Tavern and Tables.