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Wayne Post
  • Gates Chili to induct 7 alumni into Hall of Fame

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  • The Gates Chili community is invited to join a special reception from 4 to 7 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 19 as seven alumni will be inducted into the 2013 Gates Chili Hall of Fame.
    The 2013 Gates Chili Hall of Fame inductees are Ronald “Ronnie” J. LaRocca, ’82 — he will be honored posthumously due to his untimely death in 2010; Yuri Lavrynenk, ’96; David Mancuso, ’88; Bruce Rychwalski, ’67; Amy Tausch [Lechner], ’87; Kathy Collins, ’82; and Dr. Christine Sefcik [Martin], ’88.
    The reception will held in their honor at the Gates Chili High School Library Mezzanine. Tickets are $5 and can be purchased in advance at the Gates Chili Administration Building or at the door on the day of the reception. The induction ceremony will take place on Friday, September 20 at 6:45 p.m. immediately before the homecoming game.
    Questions may be directed to 585.247.5050 ext. 1202.
    ABOUT THE INDUCTEES:
    Kathy Collins, Class of 1982. Kathy believes Gates Chili afforded her with many wonderful teachers, experiences and friendships. She is self-employed as an author and educational consultant. After graduating from Syracuse University and receiving a Master’s Degree from Teachers College at Columbia University, she was a first grade teacher in Brooklyn, and a Director of Research and Primary Reading Specialist at Columbia University. As a Language Arts Consultant and Literacy Coach, she presents workshops and gives keynote speeches at national and regional conferences and institutes. She has published three literacy books that are top selling books for teachers.
    Ronald “Ronnie” J. LaRocca, Class of 1982. Ron will be honored posthumously due to his untimely death in 2010. Ron exemplified outstanding accomplishments and significant contributions in many areas such as his volunteer service with the Gates Chili Volunteer Fire Department, Gates Chili Little League Baseball, Gates Chili Middle School PTO and as Gates Chili Sports Booster Club President and Vice President. He was a dedicated employee of Wegmans and owned a small engine business called “Rollin’ Mower.” Ronnie was also a devoted father and husband with a great sense of humor, fairness and dedication to the Gates Chili community, students and school district.
    Yuri Lavrynenko, Class of 1996. Yuri believes Gates Chili provided him with both a foundation in education and athletics. Coming from another country, he found a home away from home at Gates Chili. He was very successful at both Gates Chili and Indiana University as a four year starter in soccer. Yuri achieved success as All County, All State, All Decade, and NYS Champion at Gates Chili as well as All Big Ten, All American, NCAA Final Four, NCAA Division 1 National Champion, Final Four MVP, and holding all-time assist record for the NCAA Men’s Division at Indiana University. He played professional soccer for Chicago Fire, Milwaukee Rampage, Rochester Rhinos, and Montreal Impact. Presently, Yuri is director of coaching for Dynamo Elite Soccer Academy and Webster Soccer Association and owns/operates Yuri Lavrynenko Soccer. He was inducted into the NYS West Youth Soccer Association Hall of Fame and Section V Soccer Hall of Fame.
    Page 2 of 2 - David Mancuso, Class of 1988. David believes Gates Chili was the foundation for defining the person he is today learning how to be both a good student and a good person. As a Greece Police Sergeant, he has made significant contributions and accomplishments. After graduating from SUNY Oswego, he began his career as a Rochester Police Officer and later a Greece Police Officer and Sergeant. He has earned numerous awards and letters of recognition for his service to the community. He is also an instructor in public safety training, participated in the Police Unity Tour, received the Certificate of Special Congressional Recognition for Outstanding Service and Commitment to the community, and is treasurer for the Gold Badge Club with Greece Police Dept.
    Bruce Rychwalski, Class of 1967. Bruce is a running celebrity and goodwill ambassador in both Gates and Chili. He is a fitness guru and a role model for young and old alike and an inspiration to many. In the last three years, Bruce has competed in 87 road races and 52 of the races since suffering Ventricular Tachycardia and ICD Implantation Surgery. He served in the US Air Force and graduated from SUNY Brockport. He is also involved in volunteer and community service at Purple Pony Therapeutic Horsemanship, Monroe Community Parks, Holy Ghost Church, and Ganondagan Historical Site.
    Dr. Christine Sefcik [Martin], Class of 1988. Dr. Sefcik has fond memories of dedicated teachers and administrators at Gates Chili whose guidance and high expectations helped her to continue her own education. She is Superintendent of Grant Community High School District 124 in Fox Lake, Illinois. Dr. Sefcik received her Bachelors Degree from RIT, her Masters Degree from Northern Illinois University and her Doctorate from National Louis University in Chicago. She has served as school accountant, assistant superintentent for business and operations, and now superintendent of schools for Grant Community High School. She has also served on many executive boards and committess over the years with the most significant being her position as a Director of the Illinois Association of School Buisness Officials which supports Illinois school business officials and their functions. Dr. Sefcik is also a member of the Booster Club at Grant Community High School and is married with three children.
    Amy Tausch [Lechner], Class of 1987. Amy believes her years at Gates Chili provided her with a foundation that prepared her for her professional future. She is president and investigator for Invex Investigation Agency, and agency that conducts investigations including surveillance and investigation of insurance claims. She graduated from SUNY Brockport and has been a volunteer with Military Ministry helping to raise money for the wounded military and their caregivers. She also has volunteered in the Annual Event for Operation Wounded Warrior and created a non-profit organization called New York Warrior Alliance for wounded service members.

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