Noteworthy grads

September 8, 2011

Noteworthy graduates: Edwidge Danticat, woman of letters

Well-known and highly-regarded writer Edwidge Danticat arrived in East Flatbush from Port-Au-Prince in 1981, starting 8th grade at IS 320. Despite hardship and culture shock, she excelled at Clara Barton HS. “I grasped everything but English composition. I was writing so badly. But I had good teacher-angels along the way.”

June 23, 2011

Noteworthy graduates: Thad Kubis, marketing executive

When he was growing up in Brooklyn, Thaddeus Kubis had a rather unusual interest for a teenage boy: newspapers. Where does a newspaper come from? How is it made?  He wound up attending the New York School of Printing (now HS of Graphic Communication Arts) in Manhattan. It was destiny, written on newsprint.

June 9, 2011

Noteworthy graduates: State Sen. Toby Ann Stavisky

Queens County’s first woman to be sent to the state Senate, Toby Ann Stavisky (D/WFP-16th District), may also be the first elected official to quote F. Scott Fitzgerald at the launching of a redevelopment project. The daughter of a public school teacher, Stavisky would grow up to marry a state senator and be elected to the senate herself in 1999, succeeding her late husband.

May 26, 2011

Noteworthy graduates: Bernadette Hillman, M.D.

As a neonatologist, a physician working with critically ill infants, newborns and premature babies, Bernadette Hillman of Johns Hopkins Hospital has one of the most demanding jobs in the medical field. It means functioning on little or no sleep during long shifts and treating tiny patients who can’t tell her where it hurts. Too often, death comes at what should be the start of life.

May 12, 2011

Noteworthy graduates: Theola Borden, music company publicist

I look at photos of myself from my school days and I’m always off by myself. I was shy — not run-into-a-corner shy, but a quiet kid, an only child who had no qualms doing things by herself.

April 28, 2011

Noteworthy graduates: Danny Carabano, restaurateur

Pad Thai, Middle Eastern roasted-red pepper humus, Jamaican jerk soy-chicken wrap … These are just a few of the dishes at the V Spot, a hip vegan eatery in Park Slope. A mixed ethnic menu comes naturally to owner Danny Carabano, who grew up in multicultural Brooklyn, and attended PS 180 in Borough Park and graduated from Brooklyn Tech HS in Fort Hamilton.

April 14, 2011

Noteworthy graduates: Anthony (Fiore) Wilkinson

Winner of three Daytime Emmys and four Directors Guild of America Awards, Anthony Wilkinson was a bright, inquisitive student who graduated from New Dorp HS with the highest SAT scores in his class. But he was a near suicide during his middle school years, when, consistently bullied for being different, he threw himself into oncoming traffic.

March 24, 2011

Noteworthy graduates: New York City Comptroller John Liu

John Liu, who rose to become the first Asian American in citywide office in New York City when elected comptroller in 2009 and has aggressively rooted out waste, stood up to inefficiency and stopped runaway contracts dead in their tracks, remembers a powerful moment in kindergarten at Queens PS 20. He missed his mother.

March 10, 2011

Noteworthy graduates: Susan Isaacs, best-selling author

A politician campaigning in the boroughs chokes to death on a knish. A philandering periodontist is found murdered in his Nassau County office. It’s all vintage Isaacs, a world of murder, mayhem, mensches and suspense in suburbia. She’s been charming millions of readers with best-sellers since 1978. Her charmed life took her from PS 197 and IS 234 in Flatbush to Forest Hills HS to Queens College.

February 17, 2011

Noteworthy graduates: Deborah Dowling, NYS Supreme Court Justice

For New York Supreme Court Justice Deborah Dowling — who started out providing free legal services for needy people in the area of housing litigation, became director of the Legal Services New York City Housing Unit, then served as judge of New York City Housing Court — there’s no place like home.

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