Farmingdale resident Diane Ramos received the Long Island Running Club’s prestigious President’s Award on Jan. 22 for her dedicated service to the Town of Oyster Bay Parks Department.
Ramos has played an integral role in the Oyster Bay Parks Department for the past 20 years. She is recreation director for the department, which involves overseeing and coordinating all of the town recreational programs. She has also lived in Farmingdale for most of her life.
“Farmingdale is a very close, kind and caring community," she said. "The people in Farmingdale are genuinely concerned about the happenings of their community and they take an interest in them."
Ramos runs the summer recreation programs for children, which take place throughout the Town of Oyster Bay including at Farmingdale's . In addition, she runs the ice hockey program, other special events like the Blue Fish tournament (a fishing tournament in Oyster Bay) and the car shows at the Massapequa Train Station on Friday nights in the summer.
“We are a small staff. There are only five of us working in this division but we do a lot," Ramos said. "The community appreciates having these activities, since it gives them something to look forward to."
Ramos attended SUNY Cortland, where earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Recreation and Leisure Services.
“I loved it at SUNY Cortland. I had a great experience there and did my fieldwork with the Nassau County Parks and Recreation Department," she said.
Ramos was honored with a dinner last week at Antun’s of Queens Village where Town of Oyster Bay Deputy Parks Commissioner Frank Sammartano presented her with a special citation to her on behalf of Town Supervisor John Venditto, and Trustee Bill Barrett presented her with a special Proclamation honoring her accomplishment on behalf of Farmingdale Mayor George “Butch” Starkie.
This occasion was also a family reunion. All of her children were there, including her three children and three step-children, as well as her husband Joe, her two brothers, one of which came from California, and her two sisters.
“I had no idea about this award until I got a letter from Running Club President Mike Polanksy in December," Ramos said. "I was flattered to be recognized for my efforts. I enjoy the events we do with the Road Runners. Polansky and I have a nice working relationship. He felt I deserved it, so it was really nice."
On balancing motherhood, a family life and a full-time job, Ramos notes that it’s a little easier now that her children are teenagers. In addition, she said she has good support around her, especially from her husband, sisters, as well as family and friends.
Ramos has no plans of slowing down any time soon.
“We are always planning more programs," she said. "Our volleyball program is taking place at the Hicksville Athletic Center. We have an indoor ice rink in Bethpage. We are doing more hockey programs and figure-skating events."
“I just think that the Town of Oyster Bay is a great town," she said. "People get a good bang for their buck in Oyster Bay. I enjoy working for the town and its residents."