Ulster County Executive Mike Hein Announces The 2017 Ulster County Senior Of The Year Award Recipients

Posted May 3, 2017

The Awards Recognize Dedication To The Community 

Kingston, NY- Ulster County Executive Mike Hein is pleased to announce this year’s honored seniors: Violet Streich of Olivebridge is this year’s “Ulster County Senior Citizen of the Year,” and Virginia “Vivi” Hlavsa of Marbletown is recognized for “Most Outstanding Contribution by a Senior Citizen.”    

“Ms. Streich and Ms. Hlavsa are two exceptional senior citizens who are appreciated for their efforts to enhance the lives and well-being of others in our County,” said County Executive Mike Hein. “I would like to congratulate them for receiving these awards and extend my deepest gratitude for all they do so selflessly.  Ulster County is a better place because of their contributions.”  

Violet Streich moved to Olivebridge in 1960 with her husband and has been a resident of Ulster County for nearly sixty years.  She previously worked for SUNY Ulster as a Bookkeeper and Secretary.  Violet’s love of animals has translated into over four decades of support for local organizations.  She has helped with fundraising efforts, office work, and outreach for the local SPCA, Diana’s Cat Project and the Catskill Animal Sanctuary.  She has also helped support her fellow older adults by being involved in three senior clubs and serving as an officer.  Violet’s caring and upbeat nature are attractive qualities and she hopes others will learn about ways they can volunteer and help their community.  For her, it is all about the volunteering, the satisfaction that it brings and the work that is accomplished.

Vivi Hlavsa has resided in Marbletown, in the hamlet of Lomontville, in Ulster County for thirty years.  She moved to the area with her late husband Richard after a distinguished Career as a University English Professor at Queens College, CUNY.  Her son and his family currently live on the west coast.  Vivi uses her skills as an English professor to promote the appreciation of literature in a variety of ways, including organizing the “One Book, One Community” program encouraged by the American Library Association.  Vivi also recognized the need to support older adults who wish to remain in their homes in her community and organized five SSIP (Settled and Serving in Place) groups around the county which were modeled after the National Aging in Place movement.  Anyone in Ulster County who knows this movement knows Vivi.  Vivi simply believes that you should make things happen, and she does.

Both award winners will also be recognized in Albany on May 9th as part of New York State Senior Citizen’s Recognition Day. 

“The theme for Senior Citizens this month is `Age Out Loud,´ to give aging a new voice, one that reflects what today’s seniors have to say,” said Kelly McMullen, Director of the Ulster County Office for the Aging.  “It highlights important trends, including the fact that seniors are working longer, trying new things and are engaged in their communities.  They are advocating for themselves and others and striving for wellness and independence.  We are fortunate to have so many of these seniors living right here in Ulster County who devote their time and talents in volunteering in the community.”

The Ulster County Senior of the Year Award is a yearly recognition of two of Ulster County’s outstanding senior citizens.  Nominations are sent to the County Executive’s Office for consideration by the Aging Advisory Council from numerous groups in order to make selections. An Advisory Council Selection Committee chooses two senior citizens for the awards based on the significance of their contributions to the community. 

Pictured below: 1) Violet Streich, Senior of the Year 2) Virginia “Vivi” Hlavsa, Most Outstanding Contribution by a Senior