Paul Tendler, former NYSID board member and executive director of Jawonio, died July 22 after a battle with cancer. Several current and former NYSID board members shared their thoughts on Paul’s passing.
“Paul served on the NYSID board of directors for a total of 11 years and was secretary in 2009 when he retired as executive director of Jawonio. When he spoke during our board meetings, it was with authority, expertise and clarity. Paul was a good listener who possessed a dry sense of humor. He was always a gentleman, and his accomplishments are evidence of his commitment to and advocacy for individuals with disabilities. His influence at Jawonio and on the community he served will continue for years to come.” - Ron Romano, president and CEO, NYSID
“Paul Tendler was a giant in the human services industry, and a passionate advocate for people with disabilities. His goals and vision included communities where those with disabilities could live, work and play just like everyone else. When a person could earn a day’s pay in a job with supports, as well as being treated with the dignity and respect they deserve, Paul smiled with that famous twinkle in his eye. To provide vocational or employment opportunities for people was where Paul began his career at Jawonio, and throughout his tenure as CEO, he loved to hear the numbers of people who were placed in jobs throughout the region. It is a testament to Paul’s legacy that Jawonio is the largest employer of people with disabilities in Rockland County today.” – Jill Warner, executive director and CEO, Jawonio in New City
“Paul was the consummate professional colleague, generously nurturing others as they entered the field. His quiet approach modeled how to speak out truthfully on behalf of the most vulnerable members of our society. The many years of service he gave to NYSID as a board member assured that individuals with disabilities across New York had access to real jobs in the most integrated settings of their choosing. His tireless commitment to and leadership of Jawonio was recognized statewide. I consider it a privilege to have known Paul.” – Francoise Dunefsky, president and CEO, Gateway Community Industries, Inc. in Kingston
“I got to know Paul through our shared time on the NYSID board over the last decade. We also had a common link to New City, Rockland County, where we both lived. I always knew Paul to be a very friendly, compassionate and committed individual. He led Jawonio to become a regional leader in the New York City metropolitan area, creating a very diversified service system. Paul was a key member of the NYSID board, often providing a unique perspective on the situation, allowing all to achieve a more solid solution to a problem. Paul was an outstanding leader of the community, a strong family man and a person whose contributions to Jawonio and the field will be remembered for a long time to come.” – Stephen Towler, Director of Employment and Business Services, AHRC New York City in the Bronx
For more information on the life and legacy of Paul Tendler, visit: http://www.news12.com/articleDetail.jsp?articleId=327989&position=1&news_type=news