2017 Essay Contest Winners Announced

In keeping with Claire Friedlander’s wishes to promote tolerance and understanding, the Claire Friedlander Family Foundation is pleased to sponsor the 2nd Annual Life’s WORC and The Family Center for Autism essay contest in conjunction with Life’s WORC and Schneps Communications. All ninth through twelfth grade students currently enrolled at a public or private school in Queens, Nassau or Suffolk Counties were eligible to participate. More than 90 essays were submitted to the judging panel comprised of the following distinguished leaders:

  • Peter J. Klein, President, The Claire Friedlander Family Foundation
  • Gene Bernstein, CEO, Northville Industries Corp.
  • Kelly McMasters, Asst. Professor of English/Publishing Studies Director, Hofstra University
  • Janet Koch, Executive Director, Life’s WORC

This year’s essay question was: Why do autistic and developmentally disabled people become the targets of bullies, and how can my school and community prevent it?

All of the entries were fantastic, but the three winners stood out from the rest. Please click on their names below to read their essays.

First Place and winner of $3,000: Gilda DelBianco, 9th Grade, Bishop McGann-Mercy Diocesan High School, Riverhead

Second Place and winner of $2,000: Bridget Murphy, 12th Grade, Kellenberg Memorial High School, Uniondale

Third Place and winner of $1,000: Alexandra Hildreth, 11th Grade, Garden City High School, Garden City

The winners were celebrated at a reception, held at The Family Center for Autism, on May 31. For more information visit

View video here


Sunrise Day Camp to Honor Peter J. Klein

Peter J. Klein and the Claire Friedlander Family Foundation will be honored at Sunrise Day Camp’s 11th Annual Mildred and Samuel Levine Memorial Golf Classic on Monday, August 7, 2017 at the Seawane Club in Hewlett, NY.  “The Claire Friedlander Family Foundation is proud to support Sunrise Day Camp’s life-changing experiences for children with cancer. The day camp offers the campers the gift of freedom to be a kid,  whose life otherwise is filled with medical challenges.  That is priceless,” said Klein. Sunrise is also honoring Daniel Caltellano and Sean Simon.

Providing memorable summers since 2006 for children ages 3 ½ –16, Sunrise Association Day Camps bring the simple pleasures of childhood back to children struggling with cancer, changing months of loneliness and isolation into summers filled with sunshine, laughter and happiness. And because they are day camps, it allows children to continue their medical treatment and enjoy the comfort and safety of their own homes at night. There are currently seven Sunrise Association Day Camps — three in New York (Long Island, Pearl River and Staten Island), three in Israel (Beit Yehoshuah, Be’er Sheva and Ramat Yochanan) and Horizon Day Camp in Baltimore, Maryland.   Sunrise Association Day Camps are affiliated with 30 renowned hospitals and medical centers around the world.

The fun continues year-round with Sunrise Sundays and Fun-days, offering children exciting activities and events when school is not in session. For those children undergoing treatment in pediatric oncology units of participating hospitals, Sunrise on Wheels is a one-of-a-kind program that provides hours of Sunrise-fun.

Since 2007, the Annual Mildred & Samuel Levine Memorial Golf Classic has been a cornerstone of the Sunrise Day Camp – Long Island event calendar.  Each year, over 650 people gather at The Seawane Club in Hewlett Harbor to help raise the critical funds needed for children with cancer and their siblings to continue to attend camp free of charge.   This annual event is features a shotgun start that kicks off the day for over 300 golfers out on three separate courses, an afternoon of cards and Mah Jongg for over 200 and an exciting evening that includes a short program, dinner, silent and live auctions.

Click here for more information.


Tilles Center Kids Arts Education Program

Tilles Center for the Performing Arts at LIU Post is Long Island’s premier concert hall and a valuable cultural resource. In addition to providing world-class programming for the Long Island community, Tilles Center is proud to support more than 15,000 kindergarten through 12th grade students in Nassau, Suffolk and Queens counties each year through its Arts Education programs. Providing arts experiences for students in high-needs communities is a particular focus of the program. The Claire Friedlander Family Foundation’s recent grant to Arts Education at Tilles Center will help it sustain its programming initiatives including: master classes, school-time matinee performances, in-school workshops and residencies, and much more.

A constituent of LIU, Tilles Center hosts more than 70 performances by world-renowned artists in music, theater and dance each season. Among the artists and ensembles that have been presented by the Center are the Boston Symphony Orchestra conducted by Seiji Ozawa, cellist Yo-Yo Ma, the Big Apple Circus, Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, James Taylor, the Paper Bag Players, Wynton Marsalis, and the MET Orchestra with James Levine. In addition, Tilles Center is home to important regional arts organizations including the Long Island Philharmonic and Eglevsky Ballet.

Tilles Center’s Concert Hall seats 2,242 and features orchestral performances, fully-staged operas, ballets and modern dance, along with Broadway shows, and all forms of music, dance and theater from around the world. Chamber music, cabaret, solo recitals, and theater productions for children and adults are presented in the more intimate 490-seat Hillwood Recital Hall.

The Claire Friedlander Family Foundation is proud to support Tilles Center as they continue to provide exciting and substantive cultural programming to our region.

For more information click here


East End Arts Wins Rising Star

The Claire Friedlander Family Foundation Rising Star Award was presented to East End Arts at the 5th Annual Long Island Imagine Awards. This gala event was created to offer formal acknowledgement to some of Long Island’s most effective and innovative nonprofit organizations. Over 175 nonprofit applications were submitted to win a $5,000 grant in five categories: Innovation, Leadership Excellence, Rising Star, Social Impact and the new Arts and Culture Award sponsored by the Claire Friedlander Family Foundation. Of this pool of worthy applicants, 20 were selected as finalists and one in each category was awarded the grant LIVE at the awards ceremony on May 2, 2017. The winners are:

Cerini & Associates Social Impact Award
• Pronto of Long Island, Inc.

The Claire Friedlander Family Foundation Arts and Culture Award
• East End Arts

The Certilman Balin Leadership Excellence Award
• Theresa A. Regnante, President & CEO – United Way of Long Island

Empire National Bank Innovation Award
• Adults and Children with Learning and Developmental Disabilities (ACLD)

The Business Exchange Rising Star Award
• Angels For Warriors

Nerds That Care Fan Favorite Award
• Contractors For Kids

For more information visit Long Island Imagine Awards



Huntington Hospital Emergency Department Grand Opening

In 2016, Huntington Hospital celebrated its 100th anniversary with the opening of an expanded, ultramodern emergency department. Emergency services are critical to the region — Huntington Hospital sees almost 60,000 emergency patients each year. Huntington Hospital’s mission is to improve the health and quality of life for the people and communities it serves by providing world-class service and patient-centered care. The completion of the new emergency department and other facility improvements, along with program and service growth, are vital to this mission. The Claire Friedlander Family Foundation supports Huntington Hospital’s efforts to provide the highest level of care and research that leads to life-saving medical breakthroughs. Click here for more information Huntington Hospital


The 14th Annual Woobury Ball for Autism Honors Peter J. Klein

On Thursday, April 20, 2017, the 14th Annual Woodbury Ball for Autism, hosted by Woodbury Magazine, will honor select Long Island leaders recognizing their contributions to their respective nonprofits that work with people with special needs.  Peter J. Klein, President of the Claire Friedlander Family Foundation, is a Champion of the Life’s WORC Family Center for Autism. The support made from Peter Klein and the foundation are making it possible for many economically challenged families with a loved one on the spectrum to participate in programs at the FCA. These donations also made it possible to engage school districts on Long Island to call attention to the bullying of people with special needs. For more information about Life’s WORC visit  For event details  Click here for information on Woodbury Ball


T1D Exchange Making Strides for Diabetics

The Claire Friedlander Family Foundation is supporting the T1D Exchange, a nonprofit organization founded on the belief that people affected by type 1 diabetes (t1d) need better solutions faster – better treatments and better care. T1D Exchange takes an innovative approach that puts the community of people touched by type 1 diabetes at the center of research that will meaningfully impact their lives. Their integrated model offers researchers access to aggregated clinical, biological, patient-reported data, all while fostering collaboration among patients, physicians, researchers and industry.

T1D Exchange’s mission to accelerate therapies and improve care for people with type 1 diabetes guides them to find solutions to improve type 1 diabetes outcomes in many ways. Our strong connection to the community helps inform how we invest our resources to advance innovation in better treatments, devices and solutions – targeted to what people living with T1D really need and want.

T1D Exchange has made improvements that support the growth and engagement of their online community platform Glu (, which offers education, peer-to-peer support and the opportunity for people touched by type 1 diabetes to participate in research activities. Glu is a core component of their patient-centered research initiative. Since receiving the Claire Friedlander Family Foundation grant, T1D Exchange has added approximately 7,000 new participants into this community, which today is at 20,000.  Their goal is to reach 25,000 by the end of 2018.

Financial support contributed by The Claire Friedlander Family Foundation has enabled T1D Exchange to develop new content strategies that have helped them reach and engage a broader population of people affected by type 1 diabetes and lead them back to Glu. When they join the community, it provides ongoing opportunities to engage them with educational and research activities. The Claire Friedlander Family Foundation is proud to support T1D’s mssion so they can further enhance the resources necessary to provide greater positive impact on outcomes in the T1D community. For more information visit

YouTube T1D Exchange: Creating A Worry Free Life


Chaminade’s Science, Technology & Research Center

The Claire Friedlander Family Foundation has made a grant to Chaminade High School in Mineola, NY, to support the development of their new Science, Technology, and Research Center. Scheduled for completion in December 2017, the Center will house new state-of-the-art Earth Science, Biology, Chemistry, and Physics labs featuring the latest technologies.  A research lab will provide students with a space to study human and translatable science.  The Center’s rooftop will serve as an “outdoor classroom” for meteorological and astronomical observation.  The only high school building of its kind in the New York metropolitan area, and one of the first in the nation, the Center promises to prepare Chaminade students to meet the needs of a competitive workforce that demands minds with a thorough understanding of science, technology, and research.

Chaminade High School is a Catholic school for young men on Long Island.  Its 1,700 students follow a rigorous college-preparatory, liberal-arts curriculum in an atmosphere that emphasizes the development of Christian community and education of the heart.  Chaminade combines proven methods of tradition with modern educational advances to provide students with a rich, qualitative academic experience.

Founded in 1930 by the Society of Mary, the Marianists, Chaminade is staffed by Marianist brothers and priests as well as lay men and women.  100% of Chaminade graduates attend colleges, universities, prep schools, and service academies.  The Claire Friedlander Family Foundation is proud to assist Chaminade in preparing young minds for the future. For more information, visit


Waterkeeper Alliance Working for Clean Water Worldwide

The Claire Friedlander Family Foundation is proud to support Waterkeeper Alliance, a nonprofit whose mission is to strengthen and grow a global network of grassroots leaders protecting everyone’s right to clean water. Waterkeeper Alliance is the largest and fastest-growing nonprofit that’s solely focused on clean water. It unites a global network of over 300 Waterkeeper Organizations and Affiliates, holding polluters accountable and protecting rivers, lakes and coastal waterways on six continents. Their goal is to insure drinkable, fishable, swimmable water worldwide.

Waterkeeper Alliance’s story started in 1966 when commercial and recreational fishermen, many of them veterans, united to save their river and formed the Hudson River Fishermen’s Association. These fishermen recognized that outspoken, citizen-led advocacy was the only way to ensure that laws were enforced and their river, livelihood and the health of their families were protected. They took on many of the nation’s biggest industrial polluters and won.

In 1983, they hired the first full-time Hudson Riverkeeper to patrol the river, to restore its abundant fisheries and to lead citizen-based enforcement of environmental laws. Since those early days, Hudson Riverkeeper has brought hundreds of polluters to justice and forced them to spend hundreds of millions of dollars restoring the Hudson to health. Their success spurred an explosive growth of similar grassroots programs across the globe, and in 1999 Waterkeeper Alliance was founded to support these programs.

Today, Waterkeeper Alliance is made up of over 300 Waterkeeper Organizations and Affiliates protecting rivers, lakes and coastal waterways on 6 continents. The Claire Friedlander Family Foundation is proud to be part of the global network of organizations who support their vision for clean water and strong communities.

For more information visit

Long Island’s Best: Young Artists at The Heckscher Museum

The Claire Friedlander Family Foundation is a proud supporter of The Heckscher Museum of Art’s K-12 arts education programs that reach students in nearly 70 percent of Long Island school districts. This past year, over 7,000 students participated in learning experiences that utilize original works of art to ignite each student’s curiosity and imagination, foster creative and critical thinking skills, build vocabulary, and promote collaboration and the exchange of ideas. Educational content aligns with New York State Common Core Learning Standards, and STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics) multidisciplinary curriculum.The Heckscher Museum is especially dedicated to collaborating with school districts that have a high percentage of students enrolled in free or reduced price lunch programs.

Long Island’s Best: Young Artists at The Heckscher Museum is the centerpiece of programs offered for grades 9-12. Long Island’s Best spans the school year, beginning in September and culminates with the Museum’s month-long juried exhibition of student artwork the following spring. Long Island’s Best substantially increases opportunities for students to discover, explore, advance, and gain recognition for their cognitive and creative skills.

The number of participating high schools in Suffolk and Nassau Counties has grown to 57. For the Spring 2016 Long Island’s Best juried competition, the Museum received a record number of 357 entries. Through the juried process, 83 works were selected for exhibition.

The Long Island’s Best exhibition is professionally presented in the Museum’s galleries and is accompanied by the publication of a full-color exhibition publication. The Heckscher Museum’s website,, is home to the exhibition page, and the Museum’s social media pages are used to share these amazing works with broad audiences. Inclusion in the Long Island’s Best exhibition is a prestigious accomplishment for students. For many young people, the experience is life changing.

The Claire Friedlander Family Foundation is an important partner in the Museum’s mission to promote arts education for young people.