Award: HONORING WOMEN IN NEW YORK
At 89 years young, Toni DeMeo, head of hospital volunteers, says retirement isn’t even a thought. In fact, she still makes the wheels turn in several departments at Eastern Long Island Hospital.
Since 1995, Ms. DeMeo has served as the chairwoman of volunteer services at Eastern Long Island Hospital, which relies on 300 volunteers companywide. Ms. DeMeo is essentially the human resource manager for volunteers who work in every department of the hospital. When asked why she still works, she replied, “At the end of your life, every day counts. I like being in charge and I like that I still have an impact around here. Eastern Long Island Hospital is a very different place — there’s a lot of smiling going on, and what you see is what you get.”
A native of Tarrytown, Ms. DeMeo was educated at the College of Mount Saint Vincent and took courses at St. John’s University, eventually working as a certified financial planner. In addition, she was a nurse’s aide for the Red Cross during World War II. After she left her job as a financial planner, Ms. DeMeo and her husband moved to Cutchogue full-time, where she took a job at the hospital-run Opportunity Shop Thrift Store.
A woman who wears many hats, Ms. DeMeo has since served several roles at the hospital, including: president of the Hospital Auxiliary Board from 1994 to 1995; chair of Volunteer Services from 1995 to present; and chair of the hospital’s Corner Shop in the lobby for the past fi ve years. As a way of helping those around her, Ms. DeMeo also headed up a Medicare committee to help people make sense of confusing piles of Medicare-related bills and policies.
For her exemplary work and her years of service, Ms. DeMeo received the Theodore Roosevelt Award from Eastern Long Island Hospital.
If you were to ask Ms. DeMeo what keeps her young, she would say that the good, honest work that Eastern Long Island Hospital provides is what keeps her going. A lifelong hard-worker, and a dedicated volunteer, Ms. DeMeo’s enthusiasm and zest make her an inspiration.