Talk/Read/Succeed! golf tournament fun, successful
The Springfield Housing Authority’s second annual Talk/Read/Succeed! Golf Tournament went off without a hitch, raising funds for the program that unites two dozen agencies, two schools and two family developments in a quest for early literacy.
The September 22 event was held at Oak Ridge Golf Course in Feeding Hills.
Some eighty golfers and friends gathered under sunny skies, with gentle winds making the last day of summer a perfect day to play. This year’s tournament was named in memory of Isabel Serrazina, a longtime SHA employee who passed away in January.
Serrazina was the founder of the tournament that began last year.
SHA Executive Director William H. Abrashkin offered a warm tribute to Serrazina, who worked closely with him as executive office manager until her promotion to purchasing manager, as golfers dined. He also thanked all who played, planned and otherwise participated.
“It was terrific, a great job, a fun day, and to the Tourney Team, a big thanks for your hard work,” Abrashkin said.
“People would be surprised to know what T/R/S! can do with those funds – they’ll go a long way for our families and children. Equally important is how your efforts helped build community support for T/R/S!” he said. “Everyone pulling together is making a difference.”
The best news: The tournament raised more than $8,000 for the program that serves SHA family developments Robinson Gardens and Sullivan apartments. In its fifth year, T/R/S! combines programs such as parenting education, family counseling, reading activities that include both parents and children, school events, and the Hasbro Summer Learning Initiative, a five-week summer program that has shown improved reading scores, especially among children who attend every year.
Participating elementary schools are Boland and Dorman, where many children from the two developments attend.
Dorman Principal Rhonda Stowell-Lewis also addressed the dinner crowd, giving details about how T/R/S! has united parents and educators around making children literate and boosting their reading and writing test scores. She offered particular praise for the summer learning program.
“Our summer learning program is so successful that the School Department wants to use it as a model for the entire system,” she said. “We’ve built a bridge that unites Dorman with Robinson Gardens, and Boland with Sullivan. Without T/R/S! I don’t think we would have a strong a bridge.”
The tournament drew many friends and supporters of T/R/S!, including Abrashkin, Board of Commissioners Raymond Warren, Willie Thomas, Thomas LaBonte and Jessica Quinonez, past Commissioner Timothy Babcock, and many SHA employees.
Attending the dinner included several members of Serrazina’s family – sisters Maria and Gracie Serrazina, and niece and nephew Kassandra and Anthony Ferreira.
Tournament committee Chairwoman Kathy Hardy thanked her committee for their hard work, and the many companies and friends who donated funds and raffle gifts to make the event the success that it was. Committee members were Nicole Contois, Sean Cahillane, Pamela Wells, Jake Bickley and Mary Ellen Lowney. Also assisting were Richie Daigneault, Zenaida Burgos and Lynne Cimino.
“The tournament was a great success, much better than we had expected or hoped,” said Hardy, who is manager of Human Resources. “We have a lot of people to thank. We’ll definitely be back next year.”
Key sponsors were Lyon & Fitzpatrick, LLP, Leon Pernice, & Associates, Dietz & Company, Casterline Associates, TD Bank, Supreme Industrial Products, Inc., Coalition to Protect Mass Jobs, and many others. There were also 19 tee sponsors and many generous supporters who gave gifts for the raffle that raised nearly $1,400.
The winning golf team came from TD Bank, including Vice President Joseph Premont, Rick Moussette, Brian Robinson and Jim Muccino.