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SEMC Celebrates 151st Anniversary of Service to the Community

UTICA, N.Y. – St. Elizabeth Medical Center (SEMC) celebrated its 151st anniversary Tuesday, December 12, 2017, by honoring an employee and a recipient of its community award.

Following a 12 p.m. Founder’s Day service in the SEMC Saint Marianne Cope Chapel, Alicia Dicks, president and CEO of The Community Foundation of Herkimer & Oneida Counties, Inc., received the Founder’s Day Community Award and John Cusworth received the Mother Bernardina Award, which is named after SEMC’s founder and is presented to an employee. The winner of the latter award is chosen by SEMC employees for significant contributions to the medical center, exemplifying its mission, vision and philosophy and for always going the extra mile.

Founded as The Utica Foundation in 1952, The Community Foundation of Herkimer & Oneida Counties functioned for decades as a traditional grant-maker, striving to address community needs and donors’ philanthropic goals. The Community Foundation’s recent history has seen a continuing transition from traditional grant-maker to an organization with a greater focus on social impact investment.

Like community foundations across the country and around the world, The Foundation is based on a simple concept: People who care about the community invest in The Community Foundation for the benefit of others, today and in the future.

The Community Foundation is committed to:

  • Supporting and/or leading transformational initiatives and projects that build, sustain and enhance community vibrancy
  • Stewarding community resources to ensure greater capacity for future needs
  • Responding to rising community needs in collaboration with appropriate partners.

As a community leader, in partnership with nonprofit organizations, local governments, business leaders, entrepreneurs and other collaborators, The Community Foundation works to improve the lives of Oneida and Herkimer county residents. It is located at 2608 Genesee Street in Utica.

"The Community Foundation plays a vital role our community," said Scott H. Perra, president/CEO of the Mohawk Valley Health System and SEMC. "Through its vision, which is supported by its Board of Directors and leadership team, it is able to help improve the lives of thousands of people in our region. We are grateful to have them as a partner and a friend in the Mohawk Valley."

John Cusworth of Oriskany has been employed at SEMC for 15 years. He currently works as manager of the SEMC Mail and Courier Services, a position he has held for nine years. Prior to that role, he worked for several years each in the Central Sterile Department and in the Medical Records Department. In 2008, the year he moved to Mail and Courier Services, he was named SEMC Employee of the Year. He is a native Utican who attended Utica Free Academy.

Cusworth was recognized for his strong commitment to his job, as he regularly goes out of his way to accommodate patients and employees. When needed, he makes deliveries to patients' homes and assists fellow employees with numerous needs, extending to extra drives to Little Falls and Old Forge. His many efforts are accompanied by cheerful kindness and he assists co-workers with community fund-raising events including the annual Relay for Life. Cusworth loves bowling and is a member of the Steelworker's League that plays weekly at AMF Pin-O-Rama Lanes in Utica. His daughter, Kaitlyn Raine Cusworth, is a student at the St. Elizabeth College of Nursing.

Media Contact: 
Sandra Fentiman
Manager/Community Outreach