2016 Person of the Year
Middle Smithfield Township's finalists for the 2016 Person of the Year Award were Al Compoly Jr., Kate Newman and Andy Zaso. An independent panel of judges selected the finalists from all those nominated for Middle Smithfield Township’s annual Person of the Year award. The judges announced the Person of the Year at the Volunteer Appreciation Banquet on November 18, 2016.
The Person of the Year received $2,000 toward their cause and the two finalists received $750.
2016 Person of the Year
Kate Newman lives in Bushkill with her husband Pete and daughter Emily and enjoys having her son Matt and his wife Ashley nearby.
Following a strong call of God on her life to serve, she has spent the last 17 years as a volunteer at the Bushkill Outreach community food pantry.
Recently retiring from the work at the Outreach, she has plans to travel to Budalangi, Kenya in 2017 to live and work at a small orphanage and school, with initial efforts focusing on clean water.
Al Compoly Jr.
After graduating Freehold Regional High School in Freehold NJ in 1968, Al enlisted in the United States Air Force. After basic training at Lackland Air Force base in San-Antonio Texas, Al proceeded to Chanute Air Force base in Champaign County, Illinois where he trained to be an aircraft Environmental systems repairman. Al had several assignments in the Air force working on fighter jets at Craig AFB in Selma Alabama, Korat Royal Thai AFB in Thailand during the Vietnam War, Holoman AFB in Alamogordo New Mexico, and a two and a half year tour at Zweibrucken AFB in Zweibrucken Germany.
After separating from the Service in 1975, Al went to Brookdale Community College and obtained an Associates in Arts degree and then went onto Trenton State College where he earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Art Therapy.
After completing college, Al was hired at Marlboro State Psychiatric Hospital, a 900 bed facility, where he conducted Art Therapy sessions for the residents of the hospital. By the time the Hospital closed in 1998, Al had worked his way up to the Director of Rehabilitation which encompassed 10 separate departments.
After the Hospital closed, Al was transferred to the Greenbrook Developmental Center in Greenbrook NJ as the Supervisor of Recreation. After about a year, Al continued to work for the State of NJ by becoming the first person hired for a new facility and program for sexually violent predators in Kearny NJ. Al initially wrote the policies and procedures for this new facility in conjunction with the Department of Corrections who was providing the security.
After about two years at Kearny and later at Woodbridge NJ where the sexually Violent program expanded, Al obtained his final position with the State of New Jersey, and the was as Chief Executive Officer for the Woodbridge Child Diagnostic and Treatment Center in Woodbridge NJ. The facility was operated by the Division of Youth and Family Services and provided emergency treatment and housing for troubled youth.
After about a year and a half, Al retired from the State of New Jersey and moved to the Pocono Mountains of Pennsylvania.
Andy Zaso is a retired teacher from Brooklyn Technical H.S. and from his Printing Business on Canal Street in Manhattan.
Volunteering started with printing a monthly newspaper with articles and photos of what the youth of Ozone Park, Queens could get involved in. Eventually, he became head of CYO (Catholic Youth Organization) and PAL (Police Athletic League) helping underprivileged children and youth. His four sons were also active in Baseball, Football, Swimming and Scouts. Andy shopped and cooked for community breakfasts, dinners, picnics, etc. that everyone was invited to.
When Andy and his family moved to the Poconos, it was already a part of their life to volunteer at St. John’s Church, the Senior Clubs, Mady’s Angels, the Italian Mutual Benefit Association and the Veteran’s Affairs.
The money he receives will be donated to Mady’s Angels because of the incredible work they do in the community and their spirit of generosity to all.
About the Judges
An independent panel of judges volunteered to select the finalists:
- Father Gregory A. Reichlen, St. John’s Church
- Laura Law, 2014 Person of the Year winner
- Michelle Cacko, 2015 Person of the Year Finalist
- Geoffrey Roche, Director of Public and Government Affairs at Pocono Medical Center
- Brianna Strunk, Eyewitness News Reporter