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Business News

Dominick Pernice. Photo from St. Catherine of Siena

Dominick Pernice, RT, MBA, has been named chief operating officer at Catholic Health’s St. Catherine of Siena Hospital (SCSH). For the past 13 years, Mr. Pernice has served as the administrative director of imaging services and cardiac catheterization at SCSH and St. Charles Hospital in Port Jefferson. 

In his new role, Mr. Pernice will oversee SCSH’s daily hospital operational and administrative functions; design and implement business strategies, plans and procedures; set comprehensive goals for performance and growth across all clinical services lines; and continue to ensure patient safety and patient satisfaction. 

“We are very fortunate to have Mr. Pernice as part of St. Catherine’s senior leadership team,” said James O’Connor, SCSH president. “Over Mr. Pernice’s long career at St. Catherine and St. Charles hospitals, he has proven his steadfast leadership, strategic planning and keen decision-making skills in addressing various operational issues. In addition, Mr. Pernice was instrumental in developing the imaging services at Ambulatory Care in Commack. As St. Catherine’s COO, Mr. Pernice will further enhance our hospital’s mission in providing the highest quality of care to our patients.”

Prior to joining Catholic Health, Mr. Pernice served as assistant director of radiology, supervisor of magnetic resonance imaging and ultrasound, evening imaging supervisor and radiologic technologist at Long Island Jewish Medical Center in New Hyde Park. Mr. Pernice earned his Master of Business Administration at C.W. Post University and is a Six Sigma Green Belt. 

Photo from Stop & Shop

Island Harvest Food Bank, a leading Long Island hunger-relief organization, received $96,500 from Stop & Shop’s Food for Friends campaign on June 24. According to Randi Shubin Dresner, president & CEO, Island Harvest Food Bank, funding received from the Food for Friends initiative will be used to hire a part-time, bi-lingual dietician to promote healthy eating habits among underserved populations in Nassau and Suffolk counties. Funding will also support Island Harvest Food Bank’s food collection and distribution programs.

Stop & Shop’s Food for Friends campaign raised more than $2 million for its 12 regional food bank partners, breaking all previous years’ donation records. Throughout May 2021, customers were able to give at checkout knowing that donation would stay local and fight hunger in their communities. 100% of the money raised went to Stop & Shop’s regional food banks in its service areas. Customers were also able to donate non-perishable food items at marked donation bins at each Stop & Shop store to benefit local hunger relief organizations, like Island Harvest.

“Stop & Shop is a longtime and valued partner in our mission to provide essential food assistance and promote positive health outcomes of the people we serve,” said Ms. Shubin Dresner. “We appreciate their ongoing support and generosity and thank their customers for their caring, too.”

“Stop & Shop’s Food for Friends campaign is symbolic of our relationship with Island Harvest,” said Stefanie Shuman, Community Relations Manager for Stop & Shop. “We couldn’t ask for a better friend and partner in the fight against hunger on Long Island.”

Photo from PJCC
Photo from PJCC

The Greater Port Jefferson Chamber of Commerce hosted a ribbon cutting for P..J. Harbour Club on  June 24. The momentous occasion was attended by Town of Brookhaven Councilmember Jonathan Kornreich, members of the chamber, family, friends and staff who wished owners Joe Guerra and Michael Russell (holding scissors) the best of luck in their new venture. 

Located at 154 West Broadway in Port Jefferson, in the former Due Baci location, the restaurant specializes in fresh seafood, aged steaks and classic cocktails and is open Tuesday to Thursday from 5 to 9 p.m., Friday to Sunday from 5 to 10 p.m., closed Mondays. Bar hours are Tuesday to Sunday, 4 p.m. to close. For reservations, call 631-309-5800. For further information, visit www.pjharbourclub.com.

Photo from Leg. Leslie Kennedy's office

On April 17, Suffolk County Legislator Leslie Kennedy, along with Suffolk County Comptroller John Kennedy Jr., joined with new business owner Sara Caiola to cut the ribbon for the grand opening of Lavender Cupcakery & Dessert Shoppe. The bakery and gourmet cupcake shop are located at 160 Adams Avenue in Hauppauge.

“Entrepreneurship and bold undertakings are alive and well in the 12th Legislative District,” said Leg. Kennedy. 

Hours are Tuesday to Saturday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., Sunday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., closed Mondays. For more information, call 631-236-5313 or visit www.lavendarcupcakery.com.

Rite Aid

Rite Aid announced on April 30 it is now administering the COVID-19 vaccine at all locations, spanning more than 2,500 stores in 17 states. Following the latest guidance from the Biden Administration, all those aged 16 years or older are now eligible for vaccination, and Rite Aid encourages everyone to schedule an appointment as soon as possible.

While scheduling appointments in advance is recommended to reduce wait time and guarantee availability of the vaccine, Rite Aid is now also accommodating walk-in vaccines on a limited basis in every store. Enabling walk-in appointments supports customers that may not have access to internet while also meeting the need for flexibility for customers. People interested in a walk-in appointment are encouraged to visit their local Rite Aid to confirm availability.

“The availability of vaccines in every Rite Aid location is a major milestone in our ongoing effort to fight COVID-19. We’ve been on the front lines since the beginning of the pandemic, working across our store footprint to bring testing and vaccines directly to local communities,” said Jim Peters, chief operating officer, Rite Aid. “Vaccine availability is improving every day, and our pharmacists are ready to administer vaccines safely and efficiently, providing the benefits of pharmacist-administered vaccines in a safe and sterile environment right in your neighborhood. Also, in addition to the grassroots efforts we’ve undertaken with our community partners, the availability of these walk-in appointments provides another way for those with limited or no technology access to more easily obtain COVID vaccines. We encourage everyone to make an appointment, or walk-in, today.”

Through its participation in the Federal Retail Pharmacy Program and as an Official COVID-19 Vaccination Program Provider, Rite Aid has accelerated its COVID-19 immunization efforts as allocation has expanded. Rite Aid’s certified immunizing pharmacists are administering the Moderna, Pfizer-BioNTech and Johnson & Johnson (Janssen) vaccines.

Individuals ages 18 and over can schedule appointments using the Rite Aid scheduling tool found at www.RiteAid.com/covid-19. Those ages 16 and 17 can schedule an appointment with guardian consent at any store administering the Pfizer vaccine by contacting the store’s pharmacy directly. Those stores can be found here.

For more information about Rite Aid’s COVID-19 vaccine efforts, please visit www.RiteAid.com/covid-19.

Photo from PJCC

It’s time to spice things up! The Port Jefferson Chamber of Commerce hosted a ribbon cutting for The Spice & Tea Exchange on April 15. New owners Rose and Robert Rodriguez received proclamations from Legislator Kara Hahn and Brookhaven Town Councilman Jonathan Kornreich who wished them well in their new venture.

Located at 22 Chandler Square, 106 West Broadway, in the village, the franchise offers 140 spices, 85 exclusive hand-mixed blends, over 40 exotic teas, naturally-flavored sugars, salts, gourmet gifts and accessories and a tea bar serving dozens of hot and iced teas.

Pictured in the front row, from left, chamber directors Rose and Robert Rodriguez and Suzanne Velazquez; owners Vinny and Loretta Criscuoli; and chamber president Joy Pipe; back row, Kelly Mayhew from The Spice & Tea Exchange’s corporate offices.

The shop is open Monday through Wednesday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., Thursday and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Curbside pickup is available. For more information, call 631-828-4445 or visit www.spiceandtea.com/port-jefferson.

Splish Splash Waterpark

The longest offseason in the 31-year history of Splish Splash Waterpark in Calverton will come to an end on Saturday, May 29, as the park reopens its gates to guests for the first time since Labor Day 2019, a 627-day closure caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Splish Splash’s 30th season may begin a year later than initially planned, but with no shortage of excitement for the return of summer fun to Long Island. The first step in this comeback campaign: hiring roughly 1,000 seasonal staffers to provide a clean, safe and fun experience for Splish Splash visitors.

“We’re so excited to get back to the business of fun here at Splish Splash,” said General Manager Mike Bengtson. “Creating opportunities for people to get back to work is an important step in the recovery process, and we will keep safety as our top priority for staff and applicants throughout the recruitment, orientation and training process.”

Safety will be at the forefront of all activity during the current recruiting period and as the water park prepares to open and welcomes guests back this summer. Splish SplashWaterpark will follow recommendations and rulings from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, New York Department of Health, and best practices within the amusement and attractions industries. Recruiters will conduct interviews virtually, and orientation and training will also be virtual for most positions.  Any in person trainings will require facial coverings, strict adherence to state capacity limitations, and social distancing.

Splish Splash recruiters are looking to fill roughly 1,000 openings in departments including Lifeguards, Food & Beverage, Facilities, Retail and Sales. The flexible positions offer part-time and full-time opportunities to high school and college students, professionals looking for a change of pace, and retirees interested in supplementing their income and staying active. Most seasonal positions are available to applicants age 16 and older, with job perks including free admission, team-building celebrations, discounts on park food and merchandise, flexible scheduling, and more. For more information and to apply online, visit the Employment page of Splish Splash Waterpark<https://www.splishsplash.com/employment>.

As a special thank you to its customers, Splish Splash has extended 2020 Season Passes to include the 2021 Season. For more information, call 631-727-3600.


Splish Splash Waterpark has 96 acres of family fun slides and attractions. Splish Splash is owned and operated by Palace Entertainment, one of the leading leisure park operators in the United States. Palace Entertainment operates 25 entertainment and educational venues across 10 different states, offering a wide range of family-friendly rides, attractions and educational experiences. Palace Entertainment is part of Parques Reunidos, one of the leading global operators, with more than 60 different assets (theme parks, zoos and marine parks, water parks and other attractions), spread out over various countries across Europe, North America, the Middle East, and Australia.


Pictured from left, Scott Svitek, MD, Chair, Allied Foundation Board and Partner, Allied Physicians Group; Melissa Passarelli, Director of Programs, Docs for Tots & New York State Act Early Ambassador, Help Me Grow-Long Island; Heather Edwards, Executive Director, Allied Foundation; Marc Suntup, Vice President of Development, Island Harvest; and Shannon Karafian Volunteer and Community Relations Coordinator, Island Harvest

In partnership with the Allied Foundation Diaper Bank, Long Island’s only diaper bank, Help Me Grow–Long Island recently donated 53,250 diapers and 43,200 baby wipes to struggling Long Island families for distribution through Island Harvest Food Bank. Even before the COVID-19 crisis, approximately one in three U.S. families experienced diaper need, a public health issue exacerbated by the growing economic and unemployment crisis caused by the pandemic.

Diaper costs are supported by a grant from The JPB Foundation through Connecticut Children’s Medical Center. This opportunity was made available by the Help Me Grow National Center to Help Me Grow–Long Island, an initiative overseen by Docs for Tots. The diapers are secured through the National Diaper Bank Network (NDBN). As a recognized member of NDBN, a national nonprofit, The Allied Foundation Diaper Bank is given direct access to high-quality diapers needed to help keep all babies clean, dry and healthy in their communities.

The Allied Foundation, a not-for-profit organization founded by Allied Physicians Group, based in Melville, has distributed 915,000 diapers to families in need in Suffolk, Nassau, Queens and Brooklyn since its inception in 2017. In all of 2019, the diaper bank distributed 45,000 diapers; however, because of the unprecedented demand for diapers, today the program is on track to distribute 1 million diapers in 2021 to help families who are less fortunate.

“Infants require up to 12 diapers a day, toddlers about eight making the cost as much as $80 per month, per baby. Clean, dry diapers are critical for ensuring good health to prevent illness and skin infection. More parents are struggling and simply unable to afford them due to loss of employment or other hardship caused by the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Allied Foundation Executive Director Heather Edwards.

“No state or federal child safety-net program allocates dollars specifically for the purchase of diapers,” explained Scott Svitek, MD, Chair, Allied Foundation Board and Partner, Allied Physicians Group.

“Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, over 95 percent of the families that contact us need help with diapers,” said Melissa Passarelli, Director of Programs, Docs for Tots and Help Me Grow–Long Island Coordinator. “We have been working with our partners connecting families with diapers. This grant from the JPB Foundation allows us to get diapers into the hands of families who need them most.”

“Diapers and baby wipes are items that are in high demand among parents struggling to make ends meet, even before the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Marc Suntup, Vice President of Development, Island Harvest Food Bank. “Thanks to the generous donation by The Allied Foundation, Help Me Grow–Long Island and Docs for Tots, so many parents can now provide such essential products to help keep their babies safe and healthy.”

To learn more about the Allied Foundation and the Allied Diaper Bank of Long Island, visit https://alliedfoundation.org/give/donate-diapers/ or call (631) 386-4185. For additional information about Help Me Grow–Long Island, log on to www.docsfortots.org/help-me-grow-long-island. For more details about Docs for Tots, please visit www.docsfortots.org. More information about Island Harvest is available www.islandharvest.org.

Edna J. White

The pandemic has affected absolutely everyone and no one more so than small business owners and entrepreneurs. They have never worked harder to stay afloat than in the past year.

Elizabeth Malafi, Coordinator of the Miller Business Center acknowledges their hard work. “Small businesses and entrepreneurs have had such a hard time, especially those who rely heavily on in-person events, shows and markets,” she said. 

Because of the limits on these types of events, the Middle Country Public Library’s annual Women’s EXPO went virtual last year. And, now, for the first time in its history, this traditionally fall event will be held virtually in the spring. 

An initiative of the Middle Country Library Foundation, the Women’s EXPO is a vehicle to promote economic development for Long Island women entrepreneurs.  “Offering a virtual marketplace during this time gives women an opportunity to promote themselves in a new way,” said Malafi. “It also pushes them to create or expand their digital presence. With support from Bank of America and our other sponsors, we are able to offer workshops that help them continue to grow their businesses virtually.” 

Recent workshops focused on expanding a small business’s social media footprint.  

“The mission of the Library’s Miller Business Center has always been to promote economic development on Long Island. The overwhelmingly positive feedback we received from the exhibitors about our first virtual EXPO led us to make the decision to offer the event for the first time in the spring. Now more than ever, we needed to give Long Island’s women entrepreneurs every opportunity to get back on their feet,” said Sophia Serlis-McPhillips, Director of Middle Country Public Library.

Support local businesses and shop for spring events at the Women’s EXPO on Thursday, April 15 from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Register at www.womensEXPOli.org. Virtual attendees will be entered to win one of several door prizes. Computers for browsing will be available at the Middle Country Public Library’s Centereach branch at 101 Eastwood Blvd, Centereach on the day of the event. For more information, please call 631-585-9393, ext. 296.

And now, meet some of the participating entrepreneurs!

Edna J. White

Edna J. White

An author and life purpose coach, Edna J. White was looking for a way to revive her business during the pandemic. When she saw the EXPO was going virtual last fall, she thought it would be a good way to promote her books and coaching business. 

“At first it was a little confusing because it was my first encounter with this innovative idea but after getting much-needed direction from the EXPO team, I was off and running!” she said. “The online EXPO was a great experience with a lot of engagement.” 

White is hoping for even more success this spring. 

Mary Ann Butera

Mary Ann Butera

Mary Ann Butera, of Crafty Butterfly, was intrigued by the idea of a virtual EXPO but didn’t think it was really for her … until she visited the online event last December and saw how great it looked and how easy the platform was to use. 

“This event could well become a new trend as an addition to in-person fairs. Middle Country Library offers such excellent events and programs, this new approach is just so logical and creative — it fits perfectly into the growing acceptance and use of social media … and gives me another outlet for my hand knit creations.” 

Butera will be selling felted hats, shawls, wraps, unique accessories and more during the online event.

Sherry Davis

Sherry Davis, of Davis Fiber Arts, had just decided to start selling her artwork as the pandemic hit. She quickly detoured into mask making, taking advantage of both her treasure trove of reclaimed fabrics and her fiber art skills.

 Now that things are slowly returning to some semblance of normal, Davis says she is “back on track and ready to offer my handwoven upcycled rugs to the public.” After being referred to the virtual EXPO by another woman entrepreneur, Davis decided it was “just the right time for me to debut my work.”

Tiana Le

Tiana Le, owner of Le Fusion, an artisan spring roll company, has participated in the EXPO for many years and always loved the comradery of the day but was skeptical about the event going virtual last fall. 

“When I heard they were doing the EXPO as a virtual market I wasn’t sure how it was going to work but it was AMAZING!!!” said Le, adding that she had customers asking questions throughout the day, like they would in person.

“They brought e-commerce to a different level. The platform was live and interactive. It was a successful and amazing experience!!” Le believes she will be just as successful at the April 15 event.


Bryan Beasley and his wife Mary were thrilled to present the gifts to Chief Nursing Officer Mary Jane Finnegan and Chief Operating Officer Michael Silverman who will oversee their distribution to the lucky winners!

Long Island’s newest Chick-fil-A restaurant, located at 530 Smithtown Bypass, officially opened for business on March 4. The restaurant will bring approximately 100 full- and part-time jobs to the community. Long Island-native, Bryan Beasley, the local owner/operator of Chick-fil-A in Commack and Smithtown is looking forward to welcoming and serving the greater Smithtown community, with hours of operation from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m., Monday through Saturday. The restaurant will open via drive-thru only. Guests can take advantage of contactless ordering and payment through the free Chick-fil-A mobile app or through online ordering.

In place of the traditional Chick-fil-A First 100® Grand Opening celebration, the restaurant honored 100 local heroes making an impact at St. Catherine of Siena Medical Center in Smithtown with free Chick-fil-A for a year on Feb. 26 and will donate $25,000 to Feeding America. The funds will be distributed to partners within the greater Smithtown area to aid in the fight against hunger locally.

 Locally Owned and Operated

Bryan Beasley, a Long Island-native, began his journey with Chick-fil-A after a life-altering medical event made him reevaluate his career in the financial services industry. Beasley realized that while he loved helping his clients give back to their communities, he wanted to focus his career on giving back to his own community. In 2016, Beasley opened his first Restaurant, Chick-fil-A Commack, where he will continue to serve as the Operator while simultaneously leading the Chick-fil-A Smithtown team. Grounded in the vision of serving hospitality to positively influence his community and expanding the reach of Chick-fil-A’s mission and values, Beasley spends much of his free time supporting local youth sports and leadership initiatives within the community.

Bryan Beasley with the restaurant’s mascot.

Beasley and his family continue to honor the medical team that saved his life after a virus attacked his heart in 2011, with what he’s named “The Thankful Hearts Project.” Each year, his family encourages others to join them in performing intentional acts of kindness to honor the medical team.

“Having been born and raised on Long Island, and now raising my own family here, I could not be more excited to expand Chick-fil-A’s reach in the place that has shaped who I am today,” said Beasley. “Chick-fil-A Smithtown will further our efforts to serve great-tasting food with genuine hospitality to our community, while also providing personal and professional growth opportunities that I hope will shape a successful future for our Team Members.”

About Chick-fil-A, Inc.

Atlanta-based Chick-fil-A, Inc. is a family owned and privately held restaurant company founded in 1967 by S. Truett Cathy. Devoted to serving the local communities in which its franchised restaurants operate, and known for its Original Chick-fil-A® Chicken Sandwich, Chick-fil-A serves freshly prepared food in more than 2,600 restaurants in 47 states, Washington, D.C., and Canada.

More information on Chick-fil-A is available at www.chick-fil-a.com