Robert H. Penn Community Service Award (Established 2009)



The “47” Alumni board is pleased to announce the establishment of the Robert H. Penn Community Service Award. This award is in memory of alumnus Robert H. Penn, ’58, who was a firm believer that we should always be helpful to others in any way we could.  He was a dedicated and faithful member of “47” Alumni Association of the Deaf, Inc., for 15 years, serving as vice president, treasurer and Sunshine coordinator. He was also involved with many other organizations in various positions.  He died of esophagus cancer on May 22, 2007.


The Robert H. Penn Community Service Award recognizes a class or classes at “47” The American Sign Language and English Lower School and “47” The American Sign Language and English Secondary School demonstrating outstanding achievement in community service. The honor involves a monetary award and a certification.

Examples of Community Service

Examples of community service recognized by the award include, but are not limited to:

  • Mentoring other classes
  • Reading to other classes
  • Working with different projects, such as: (1) Hosting a food and/or clothes drive for homeless people, (2) Visiting Deaf Senior Citizens at Tanya Towers, and (3) Raising funds for a cause
  • Helping at a soup kitchen
  • Creating an art project to beautify the interior or exterior of the school


The class (one letter from a student per class) must write an essay of at least 100 words about why the class deserves to be recognized for this award.

The Robert H. Penn Community Service Award Winners



5th Grade Class
Maryanne. Fisher, Teacher
8th Grade Class
Joseph Santini – Teacher



6th Grade Class
Maryanne Fisher – Teacher



5th Grade Class
Irene Reedy, Cindy Zameryka – Teachers
6th Grade Class
Maryanne Fisher, Jennifer Samelson – Teachers
8th Grade Class
Evelyn Begley, Mitchell Gruskin – Teachers



Pre-K B7 Class
Wendy Smallstey, Ned Brand – Teachers & Jose Constanzo – Paraprofessional
6th Grade Class
Michael Kaufer and Wesley Williams – Teachers


Page last updated June 21, 2014