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Power Women of Queens Celebrates 30 years 

Mar. 1, 2024 By Iryna Shkurhan

Since its inception 30 years ago, Power Women of Queens, this year presented by Bethpage Federal Credit Union, has recognized thousands of women for their extraordinary contributions and built a network for continuous growth. 

On Thursday, Feb. 29, Schneps Media celebrated the anniversary of the impactful networking event at Terrace on the Park in Corona. Over 550 attendees gathered to celebrate the women who received an award this year, many of them past recipients who paved the way for their other women in their respective industries. 

Victoria Schneps, the President of Schneps Media, started the company with just one newspaper, The Queens Courier, in her living room over 35 years ago. Since then, the company has grown to encompass 90 different publications covering local communities across NYC, Long Island, Philadelphia and Palm Beach, Florida. 

Thursday’s anniversary event was a grand celebration.  

Rob Suarez, the Assistant Vice President of Community Development at Bethpage Federal Credit Union, the presenting sponsor of the evening, conveyed, “Bethpage Federal Credit Union is immensely proud and honored to be part of such a significant event.”

“Collaborating with Schneps Media has been a remarkable journey. It has enabled us to truly align our values as a financial institution with our commitment to giving back to the communities we serve. This partnership not only enhances our community engagement efforts but also strengthens our resolve to make a meaningful impact,” he added.

Bethpage Federal Credit Union was thrilled to honor one of their own, Chelsea De Leon Business Development Relationship Manager – New Relationships. She was joined by her mother, family, friends and colleagues. 

In honor of the milestone which fell on the eve of Women’s History Month, Power Women nominated in the past returned this year as ICONS. Some paid it forward by nominating a RISING woman, who is a woman on an upward trajectory in their careers.

“I was lucky enough to be one of the first Power Women when Vicki Schneps became a good friend of mine and we started our businesses together,” said Lois Christie, President and CEO of Christie & Co. Salon in Bayside. “To be in business you need relationships and you need mentors.”

Among the impactful women honored were CEOs, business owners, nonprofit executives and professionals in fields ranging from healthcare to finance. This year Schneps Media paid a special tribute to women in aviation.  All the women recognized the power of this ultimate networking event.

Power ICON Legacy Yvette Dennis, Executive VP of Program Management at Crescent Consulting joyfully stated “I have never seen anything like a Schneps event. They really bring women to the forefront and show what we can do.”

Meanwhile, Power Woman Rising, Gina Battagliola, Director of Terminal Redevelopment at JFKIAT said “The best impact you can have on anyone is aiming them with the knowledge and self assurance so that they too can stand up here in the future and be honored with all of us powerful women.”

Among these years’ Power Women honorees is Geraldine Ramos R.N., Director of Patient Care Services at Parker Jewish Institute who shared being a power woman honoree meant to her, “A power woman is someone who recognizes that she cannot do everything herself so she empowers the people around her.”

Also being recognized as a Power Woman this year is Anila Pantazi, Sales Field Operations Supervisor at MetroPlus Health who shared, “Women do a lot and a lot of it is not recognized. Schneps does a wonderful job of putting on this event every year and bringing together successful women.”

“It’s great to be recognized. I feel empowered. I want to motivate and inspire my peers and the younger generation,” said Pantazi.

“Networking events like these are so important for bringing women from all walks of life and industries together and building strong powerful communities,” said Dianna Rose, Principal at Dianna Rose & Associates. “You get to meet an amazing bevy of women that are local. Your network equals your net worth and social capital is so important.”

“This is the first time I’ve ever received an award and recognition and that’s because now there are more women leaders than ever before,” said RISING Power Woman Ayesha Ma, Vice President of Asian Marketing at Resorts World NYC.

Ma was nominated by ICON Michelle Stoddart, who is the Senior Vice President of Community Development at Resorts World. They have been working together for over 13 years. Ma reflected that without Stoddart’s mentorship, “I would not be here tonight.”

When it was time to accept their awards, the women danced down the red carpet. They were cheered on by other awardees and celebrated with their own loved ones and colleagues. Accompanying the gold trophy were citations from State Senator Joseph Addabbo Jr. and State Assembly Member David Weprin, who were both in attendance. 

Queens Borough President Donovan Richards made a special appearance at the VIP Honoree Power Hour to congratulate all of the honorees.

“Coming together in the Queens community and seeing so many talented individuals has actually been the highlight of my evening. Knowing where we can build bridges and continue to help the community is the most critical part,” said Suzette Noble, CEO of LaGuardia Gateway Partners. 

There will be five more Power Women events, including in Manhattan, Brooklyn, the Bronx, Long Island and the East End throughout the year, which will culminate with a Power Women Summit at the end of 2024 with keynote speakers and the chance for wider networking. 

“It’s important to keep supporting women because there was a point in time when Power Women would never have been in a sentence together. We have power together but we have to support each other,” said Stephanie Baldwin, Vice President of Airport Operations at Delta Airlines at JFK. 

At each Power Women event, donations are raised for an important cause. This year 100% of proceeds from raffles and an auction went towards the Tiegerman School. It serves students with disabilities, such as autism and dyslexia, across five schools located in Queens and Long Island. 

Many of the honorees noted how far women have come collectively over the years as they worked to break the glass ceiling and move their way up to leadership positions.  

“I work mainly in construction and seeing women have a very big voice at the table now has been a big change,” said Jamila Glean, Project Director at R.F. Wilkins Consultants. “I’ve been working a long time and this is the only time that I’ve got to dance and accept my award. It’s a big deal to have joy and show that you want it.”

All the women had their own definition of what makes a Power Woman and had the opportunity to share what the term means for them. 


Power Women ICONS:

Sudha Acharya, Executive Director at South Asian Council for Social Services (SACSS)

Clorinda Antonucci, Executive Director at JFK Rotary Club

Julissa Bisono, Co-Director of Organization at Make the Road New York

Stacy Bliagos, Esq. Executive Director at HANAC

Lois Christie, Owner of Christie & Company Salon & Spa

Georgette Dennis, Site Program Manager at Crescent Consulting

Yvette Dennis, Executive VP of Program Management at Crescent Consulting

Luchia Dragosh, Supervising Producer at Queens Public Television

Debra-Ellen Glickstein, Founding Executive Director of NYC Kids RISE

Nicole Jordan-Martin, Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer at NYC Health + Hospitals/Community Care

Madeline Johnson, Community Relations Coordinator at Queens Public Television (QPTV)

Roze Kolaj, Project Compliance Manager at Holt Construction

Michelle Stoddart, Senior Vice President of Community Development at Resorts World New York City

Dr. Christine Mangino, President at Queensborough Community College

Roslyn Nieves, Community Development Manager at Queens Public Television (QPTV)

Kathleen Pettit, Regional Director at HHM Hotels

Miriam Vega, Ph.D. CEO at Joseph P. Addabbo Family Health Center, Inc.

Palmina Whelan, Capital Program Director at New Terminal One at JFK


Power Woman RISING:

Gina Battagliola, Director of Terminal Redevelopment at JFKIAT

Shamise Harvin, Career Readiness Specialist at SCO Family of Services

Ayesha Ma, Vice President of Asian Marketing at Resorts World New York City

Monisha Singla, Founder of M&R Concessions


Power Women 2024:

Nancy Adzemovic, AVP and Branch Manager at Ridgewood Savings Bank

Sherry Algredo, Chair of Queens Community Board 9

Jenny Antony, Chief Financial Officer at Life’s WORC

Dr.Abbi-Gail Baboolal, DNP, FNP, MSN, APRN, BSN, Chief Nursing Officer at NYCHHC/Queens Hospital Center

Stephanie Baldwin, Vice President of Airport Customer Service, JFK at Delta Airlines

Winnie M. Benjamin, BPA, Business Performance Advisor, Legacy Development & Sustainability Consultant at Stewardship Masters International, Inc. (SMI)

Lelina Chang, President at GAMCO Corporation

Lauren Dascalopoulos, General Manager JFK at Hawaiian Airlines

Chelsea De Leon, Business Development Relationship Manager- New Relationships at Bethpage Federal Credit Union

Susana Desa, Vice President of Operations at JFKIAT

Monique Edwards, Senior Customer Service and PMO Manager at Alstom

Rita Gambino, Director of Administration at St. Michael’s Cemetery

Stacey Gilbert, Senior External Relations Client Manager at Port Authority of New York and New Jersey

Jamila N. Glean, Esq., Project Director, R.F. Wilkin Consultants

Suzette Gordon, President and Chief Executive Officer at SCO Family of Services

Jessica Han, Financial Consultant at Flushing Financial Services

Deborah Johnson, Founder of A Walk For It All

Nancy C. Leghart, Executive Director, St. John’s ICARE Foundation

Lauren Leonardi, High School Principal at Tiegerman School

Meridith Maskara, Chief Executive Officer at Girl Scouts of Greater New York

Neela Mukherjee Lockel, President and Chief Executive Officer at EAC Network

Annarrisa Nathoo, Executive Director at Caribbean American Restaurant Association

Suzette Noble, Chief Executive Officer at LaGuardia Gateway Partners

Sade Olanipekun-Lewis, Vice President, Operating & Community Partnerships at JFK Millennium Partners

Ivelisse Paniagua, Banking Operations Manager at Ponce Bank- Forest Hills Branch

Anila Pantazi, Sales Field Operations Supervisor at MetroPlus Health

Jean Phelps, PhD., Director of the Office of Student Activities at York College of the City University of New York

Diana Rachnaev, CEO & Co-Founder at Yesodot, Inc.

Geraldine Ramos, R.N., Director of Patient Care Services, Parker Jewish Institute

Patricia Robinson, Chief Administrative Officer at Greater Jamaica Development Corporation

Jodi Lynn Romano, LCSW-R, Director of Social Work at NYC Health + Hospitals/Elmhurst

Dianna Rose, Principal at Dianna Rose & Associates

Megan Yuan, Queens Borough Director at The Mayor’s Community Affairs Unit


Sponsored By:

Bethpage Federal Credit Union


Girl Scouts of Greater NY

Crescent Consultants


RFW Consultants

Dianna Rose

M & R Concessions

Resorts World New York City

Laguardia Gateway Partners

Parker Jewish


Christie & Co.

Episcopal Health Services



Holt Construction 

Life’s Worc


Port Authority of New York & NJ

NYC HHC/Community Care

Grassi & Co.

Miss Jessie’s


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