Thursday, February 28, 2013

Caring for a Sick Loved One, Non-Medically

When a loved one is in pain, family and friends are often at a loss as how to help. This is especially true for those who lack medical knowledge.  While one is not able to find a cure however, they can still do much – non-medically – to ease the very challenging process.  In the US, two particular families come to light as examples: the Bramontes and the Donovans.

Since there are so many American Cancer Society volunteers, the hosts an annual National Volunteer Week.  2012 marks its 40th year and a whole slew of events will be held for the incredible 3 million individuals in New York City who have been a part of this.  This year’s events will take place between 15 to 21 April. 

Particular individuals who are being honored this year by the American Cancer Society include the Bramonte family.  Two weeks after he survived the Twin Towers attack, Mark Bramonte was diagnosed with CLL, an incurable form of leukemia.  Some years later as his health was really deteriorating, the Rituxan drug gained FDA approval which saved him.  Those around him were so grateful that they wanted to find a way to give back; his wife Graceann became the Survivor Chair for the Bay Ridge Relay For Life; his oldest daughter Chirsta sits on the Relay For Life Committee at University of Delaware and volunteers with the Bay Ridge Relay For Life; his middle child Stephanie  sits on the Relay For Life Committee at Manhattan College and assists the Bay Ridge Relay For Life; and his youngest child Matthew also sits on the Bay Ridge Relay For Life Committee. Mark himself is also active and is now trying to expand Relay in the District Schools. Mark’s cancer was clearly a family affair and proved how even without medical knowledge, loved ones can be incredibly supportive.

Another example is James Donovan.  He was devastated when his good friend was diagnosed with cancer and likewise did not know how to help.  In a recent article he wrote about this issue, describing feeling “helpless.”  He thus sought other ways to support him, by “keep[ing] him positive and mak[ing] him as comfortable as possible.”   However, when he finally lost the battle against the disease, Donovan again felt helpless and wanted to continue the fight in a different way.  While he knew he was not “qualified to have a ‘hands-on’ role in the health care industry,” he put his business and finance skills to practice by “shar[ing] them with organizations to help advance their missions.”  Today he sits on the Board of Trustees of the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and the Foundation for the National Institutes of Health Board of Directors. He is also a member of The Lank Center for Genitourinary Oncology, and, together with his wife, set up the Christy and Jim Donovan Fund for Prostate Cancer Research at Dana-Farber. He is co-host of a yearly breakfast fundraiser for the Institute and more.

There is always a way to help those going through cancer or other terrible diseases and above are just two examples.  As the Baramontes and the Donovans have shown, even without medical knowledge there are plenty of skills that can be put to tremendous use so that one does not end up feeling helpless in the face of cancer.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

International Safety Group Announces Addition


In recent news for a New York City based company, International Safety Group just announced the appointment of Charles Gargano to its Board of Directors.  ISG is an occupational risk management services company that provides risk management services, construction safety, fire safety and more in NYC and throughout the tri-state area. They are part of the portfolio of companies that OmniView Capital Advisors with Abraxas J. Discala advises.

Charles Gargano has spent over 20 years in public service at the Federal and State level. He attended Fairleigh Dickinson Univeresity and Manhattan College and has both a bachelor’s and master’s degree in Civil Engineering and an MBA. He also has four honorary doctorate degrees and he was a US Ambassador to the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago from 1988 to 1991.

As Charles Gargano stated about his new position with ISG,
 "I am pleased to join the Board of such a quality company that is involved in such critical aspects of the building and construction industry. I look forward to utilizing my expertise and contacts to help International Safety Group continue its momentum."
Michael Gianatasio, President and CEO of ISG said,

"We are happy that Charles has joined our Board of Directors as we continue to build a robust team. Charles' construction, engineering, public service and political expertise will be very beneficial for our company as we continue to work on larger contracts and projects."
 Certainly, this news is exciting for ISG and for those who help them like OmniView Capital Partners and AJ Discala.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Manhattan Bread and Bagel Celebrates 20 Year Anniversary



Manhattan Beach’s Manhattan Bread and Bagel is preparing to celebrate its 20th anniversary by offering its 1993 prices for a week. The rollback will begin on Saturday, February 23rd. Bagels will cost 45 cents and sandwiches will sell at no more than $4.55 until March 1st.
Owner Michael Keegan said:
“We’re making things from scratch the old-fashioned way and hope to continue doing the same for many more years."
He explained that his wife was the one who wanted to open a restaurant, but that he hesitated in the beginning.
“I said, ‘No, I don’t want to open a restaurant. It’s too competitive and people go in and out of business. What we need in this town is a bagel bakery. There are no fresh bagels that are any good in this area’,” Keegan said. “At the time there were no stores like that that sold fresh-made bagels in Manhattan, Hermosa or Redondo."
Since its inception in 1993, Manhattan Bread and Bagel has turned into a 24 hour business. It has 18 full-time and 10 part-time employees.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Manhattan-Based Zarsha Leo a Dream Come True


New York City is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world. Millions of people pass through the city on a monthly basis. The hub of the excitement is Manhattan, making it the perfect place to headquarter a new business. Evan Burschkopf, a Brooklyn-born restaurant enthusiast, has done just that.

Launched in 2011, Zarsha Leo is a Midtown-based restaurant-bar that prides itself on its trendy, All-American ambience, traditional grill menu and live sports broadcasts. Burschkopf, the CEO, has always dreamt of opening such a venue, and is thrilled with the franchise’s success.
“I never imagined the franchise would reach such a large scale in so little time,” Burschkopf said. “We have branches throughout North America, Europe and Asia, and are currently expanding in other regions as well.”

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Valentine's Day Weddings at the Empire State Building



There’s always something fun to do in midtown on Valentine’s Day (or any day for that matter). For three happy couples today, that fun just got even more exciting. Three couples will be getting married today on top of the Empire State Building. They were the winners of an online contest that was sponsored by the management of the building and they have each won an all-expenses paid dream wedding!

One couple is from Massachusetts, another is from Washington DC and the third is from Florida. Manhattan event designer Preston Bailey is in charge of all of the wedding details. As he said, “They are going to be really blown away.”

Perhaps you can catch a glimpse of these couples today as they say their vows. Then, enjoy a romantic lunch at Triomphe, which is part of Shimmie Horn’s Iroquois Hotel. And take in an afternoon or evening Broadway show.
Shimmie Horn


Now that’s the way to enjoy a beautiful Valentine’s Day in the city!