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Armonk Teen, Westchester Library System Earn Public Health Awards

Armonk teen Sarah Ilany.
Armonk teen Sarah Ilany. Photo Credit: Contributed
Terry Kirchner, executive director of the Westchester Library System.
Terry Kirchner, executive director of the Westchester Library System. Photo Credit: Contributed

WESTCHESTER COUNTY, N.Y. -- Sarah, Ilany, an Armonk resident, and Terry Kirchner, executive director on behalf of the Westchester Library System, will both receive awards at the Westchester County Board of Health's Public Health Awards at 10 a.m. Thursday at the Greenburgh Public Library.

The awards are granted to individuals or organizations that have made outstanding contributions to public health in the county. This year’s award recipients are the Westchester Public Library system and Armonk teen Sarah Ilany.

Ilany, a 13-year-old from Armonk, will be presented with the 2015 JR Tesone Youth Public Health Service Award for her advocacy and fundraising on behalf of young people with Type 1 Diabetes. Ilany created an Instagram account called Blood Sugar Cookies, where she shares photos with short captions that other teenagers can relate to about funny, awkward and frustrating aspects of managing her Type 1 Diabetes.

Terry Kirchner, executive director of the Westchester Library System, will accept the 2015 Distinguished Public Health Service Award on behalf of the Westchester Library System, which is being recognized for its health literacy initiatives for older adults.

These initiatives include helping seniors and their caregivers sort through the maze of benefits and government programs available to them. In addition, 80 volunteers deliver engaging presentations to community groups and provide counseling at 10 local libraries. The Westchester Library System also offers a free, eight-week seminar that helps adults 50 and older find a job, advance their careers or change career paths, as well as assistance in planning for the future.

The library system also provides seniors with structured art programs that offer participants a creative outlet and cognitive stimulation.

The presentations will be made in recognition of National Public Health Week, which highlights the accomplishments of the public health community.

County Executive Robert Astorino will kick-off the program and will be joined by Health Commissioner Sherlita Amler and Board of Health President R. Steven Nakashima, who will present the awards.

For more information about public health, visit the Westchester County Department of Health at www.westchestergov.com/health.

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