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OCO Names Leadership Award Winners

FULTON, NY – Executive Director of Oswego County Opportunities Diane Cooper-Currier announced that Michelle Canfield and Ellen Lazarek were recently honored with the agency’s Amelia Whelahan Leadership Award during OCO’s annual board meeting held March 24th at Springside at Seneca Hill.

Presented annually, the OCO’s Amelia Whelahan Leadership Award recognizes a staff member who has made outstanding contributions to OCO and the Human Services profession.

Ellen Lazarek (left), with OCO’s Youth and Family Services and Michelle Canfield with OCO’s Residential Services were recently honored as the recipients of Oswego County Opportunities’ prestigious Amelia Whelahan Leadership Award.
Ellen Lazarek (left), with OCO’s Youth and Family Services and Michelle Canfield with OCO’s Residential Services were recently honored as the recipients of Oswego County Opportunities’ prestigious Amelia Whelahan Leadership Award.

The award is dedicated in the memory of Amelia Whelahan, a dedicated and committed member of the Oswego County Opportunities family for many years.

She served on the agency’s board of directors, its planning and evaluation committee and as its president.

For her many contributions and accomplishments, the board of directors recognizes her memory by honoring a distinguished employee with this award each year.

“This year, I am proud to say that we had many outstanding nominees and two individuals who were truly worthy of the award. I am happy to honor Michelle Canfield and Ellen Lazarek as this year’s recipients of the prestigious Amelia Whelahan Leadership Award,” Cooper-Currier said.

Program coordinator – developmental disabilities, Canfield has worked with OCO since 1985 and has a long, rich history with the agency.

A strong advocate for the population she works with, her number one goal is ensuring quality of care and equitability.

Canfield listens to consumers (residents) and staff and implements necessary changes accordingly.

As program coordinator, Canfield’s role models effective communication, strong work ethics, commitment, honesty, integrity and effective leadership.

Care management program coordinator with youth and family services Lazarek is heavily involved in the community through her service on the Teen Health Conference and Starlight Youth Walk committees.

Lazarek is also on the advisory board for Even Start, the United Way Stuff-A-Bus Campaign and is a trainer for the Advancing Youth Development Training.

A lifelong student, she is noted for always looking for development opportunities in the field of youth work.

OCO is a private, non-profit agency that has been supporting communities throughout Oswego County since 1966 and touches the lives of more than 20,000 people annually.

It is a United Way of Greater Oswego County member agency.

For more information, visit www.oco.org