“It was an unbelievably wonderful experience and it was really fabulous to learn about what wonderful things people are doing all over the country,” says Dyson Professor Ellen Mandel, PhD, of her recent trip to the Jefferson Awards National Ceremonies in Washington DC. “It was very humbling because I was surprised to be in that group.”
That surprise however was not shared by other members of the Pace Community. This past spring, Pace’s Center for Community Action and Research (CCAR) was proud to announce that Mandel had been nominated by her Pace peers and had been chosen as one of six Jefferson Award Bronze Medal winners. In addition, Mandel had been selected to represent Pace at the Jefferson Award National Ceremonies where she would compete for the Gold Medal Award.
A little more than 20 years ago, Mandel worked with Rockland County Legislative Chair Harriet Cornell to bring Komen to the Rockland area by instituting the county’s first-ever Breast Cancer Awareness Day and offering mammograms to the underserved women in the community. Eventually they were able to bring mobile mammogram services into the various Hasidic communities within Rockland County. Mandel sat on the New York Chapter of Komen for several years until her own health kept her from attending the meetings.
“I stayed on as the Chairman for hospital teams in the tri-state area, and I founded the Pace team ‘Right Away,’ which has grown tremendously,” she says. “We now have more than 100 walkers and since the addition of the fabulous Sleeper category, people are giving their money and sleeping in instead of walking.”
Through the years, Mandel has dedicated her time and concentrated her efforts into giving back to those closest to her and to the community at large. From sharing a laugh and some kind words with colleague battling cancer to forming one of the largest university teams in the annual Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure, Mandel is giving back on so many levels.
“I try to give back as much as I possibly can give back,” says Mandel, whose grandmother taught her at a young age that one must give without the expectation of recognition. “I’m not good at much—I’m an excellent teacher and I’m good at giving. That’s all.”
Want to be part of the Pace team on Sunday, September 9? Click here to register.