Sag Harbor Partnership Honors Diane Schiavoni

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Diane Schiavoni, center, received the Sag Harbor Partnership’s 2021 Community Service from the organization’s co-chairwomen, Susan Mead, left, and Carol Ostrow as executive director John Shaka and Alison Bond look on. STEPHEN J. KOTZ

Diane Schiavoni, who has lived her entire life in Sag Harbor and dedicated herself to improving her home town, was honored by the Sag Harbor Partnership on Thursday, October 21, with the organization’s Community Service Award.

Schiavoni also received proclamations from the Southampton Town Board and Suffolk County Legislator Bridget Fleming at a reception held at the home of the partnership’s executive director, John Shaka, and his husband, Matthew O’Grady.

Schiavoni, whose most recent charitable endeavor was to raise $51,000 to help restore the grandstand at Mashashimuet Park, quipped that when Shaka called her to let her know she had won the award that “he was calling me because he wanted to give me a check.”

“It was an easy choice this year,” Shaka said of the unanimous decision to give the award to Schiavoni.

Over the years, Schiavoni has led efforts to install new streetlamps in the business district and refurbish the wrought iron fence surrounding the Civil War monument at Main and Madison streets. She has been a member and leaders of numerous organizations including the Ladies Village Improvement Society, the Sag Harbor Historical Society, the Friends of the John Jermain Memorial Library, and the Columbiettes, the women’s association at St. Andrew Catholic Church. She also served on the Village Board of Historical Preservation and Architectural Review for eight years.

Shaka also read a proclamation from the Southampton Town Board (Schiavoni’s nephew is Councilman Tommy John Schiavoni), declaring it “Diane Schiavoni Day” in the town.

“Throughout her life, she has distinguished herself as one of the South Fork’s most community-minded people, serving tirelessly, professionally, and unselfishly to make our home a better place to live, work, and visit,” the proclamation stated.

Michael Iasilli, one of Fleming’s legislative aides, also presented Schiavoni with a proclamation honoring her for outstanding service to the community. “Diane’s legacy of service is exactly why Sag Harbor is such a wonderful place to live,” he said.

New York State Assemblyman Fred W. Thiele Jr. also made brief remarks. “If I had the opportunity to say everything there is to say about Diane through all the years I’ve known her, we’d be here for a long, long time,” he said.

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