Mount Sinai South Nassau, Maidenbaum's honor ‘health care heroes’


Mount Sinai South Nassau dedicated its new Maidenbaum Health Care Heroes Plaza on Monday to the hospital’s doctors, nurses and health care workers in honor of their extraordinary efforts during the coronavirus pandemic. The plaza was made possible by a significant donation from Iris and Shalom Maidenbaum, property tax reduction experts from Maidenbaum Property Tax Reduction Group LLC, and member Amy Madmon.

“We support a lot of local organizations that deal with people with disabilities, and a lot of them are from the South Shore,” Madmon said. “A lot of them will use this hospital and other areas of the county. We focus on the people that are most affected by just living here. By supporting everybody that’s here, we can focus on our clientele and show them that we support them. Not only that they’re from this community, but that we are, too, and we give back to them.”

The plaza, at the front of the hospital, will serve as a lasting tribute to the nurses, doctors and support staff who cared for patients throughout the pandemic. It is adorned with brick pavers, trees and benches, and the focus of the hospital’s Buy a Brick fundraising campaign, in which the bricks will be inscribed with messages from staff, benefactors and local residents.

“It’s so important that we not forget the sacrifices that were made during those dark days,” said Joe Calderone, the hospital’s senior vice president of corporate communications and development. “The health care workers who really put their own concerns, their own families and their own safety aside in order to serve others.”

Dr. Aaron Glatt, chairman of the department of medicine and chief of infectious diseases, highlighted the heroism of health care workers who, contrary to their instincts, ran toward danger in order to save lives.

“A hero is a person that overcomes his natural inclinations and does good,” Glatt said. “During Covid, every single employee ran towards the fire. We are honored and are so moved by all of the hospital heroes at Mount Sinai South Nassau and throughout the health care industry, who never for a moment stopped taking care of very sick patients. I think it’s important that people realize who the true heroes are.”

Dr. Josh Kugler, chairman of MSSN’s department of emergency medicine, underscored the contributions of the Maidenbaums in supporting the hospital’s mission to provide high-level care. “Their donation will help us continue to expand our advanced services to residents across the South Shore,” Kugler said.

The ceremony was attended by elected officials including U.S. Rep. Anthony D’Esposito,State Sen. Patricia Canzoneri-Fitzpatrick, Assemblymen Ari Brown and Brian Curran, Nassau County Executive Bruce Blakeman, Legislators Howard Kopel and Patrick Mullaney, Hempstead Town Supervisor Don Clavin, Oyster Bay Town Supervisor Joseph Saladino, Island Park Mayor Michael McGinty, Freeport Mayor Robert Kennedy, Cedarhurst Mayor Benjamin Weinstock, Long Beach City Councilman John Bendo and David Friedman, the former U.S. ambassador to Israel.

Tony Cancellieri, co-chair of the hospital’s advisory board, reminisced about a caravan organized during the height of the pandemic, in which over 400 cars paraded outside the hospital to thank health care workers.

“These health care workers put their lives on the line every single day to save our lives,” Cancellieri said.

The dedication of the Heroes Plaza wasn’t just a commemoration of past heroism, but also a celebration of the ongoing commitment of health care workers and the community’s support for Mount Sinai South Nassau. The event concluded with a ribbon-cutting ceremony and a reception, at which attendees reflected on the day’s significance.

“Today is not just about the past, it’s also about the future, Shalom Maidenbaum said. “We also honor the future services of individuals who continue to dedicate themselves to the well-being of our community, despite challenges they continue to face. They persevere with unwavering determination, always ready to lend a helping hand to provide comfort and care.”