In recent weeks, Waterloo Rotary has added new members as people in the community join in the effort to “make good things happen” through Rotary.
“My decision to join Rotary was prompted by my missing over the years the feeling of belonging to a service organization,” said new member Ray Grifa.”Unfortunately as my work and family evolved over the years I was unable to effectively serve and had to step back. Now, after retirement, I am able to devote time and energy to service and am fortunate enough to be able to join Rotary.”
Unlike Grifa, Marianne VanNostrand had been active in many organizations over the years while employed at Goulds Pumps. When she retired, she decided to take on a new full time job – community service.
“I retired after over 42 years at Xylem Inc. (formally Goulds Pumps Inc. and ITT Corp.)” she said. While employed, she volunteered for more than 30 years with the American Red Cross to provide blood drives at the Goulds’ Bayard Street facility. Within 20 years, she was coordinating four drives per year.
“I first got involved with the American Red Cross when I was in high school in the 70’s, canvased and worked in the canteen during the blood drive,” VanNostrand said.
She also helped coordinate Goulds’ annual Children’s Christmas party for 20 plus years, and helped coordinate the annual Summer Clambake for 27 years; seven white water rafting trips to the Adirondacks; the annual family events at Seabreeze and Darien Lake; company tickets to the Merry Go Round Playhouse in Auburn NY. for 20 years; and benefits for American Heart Association, March of Dimes, Cystic Fibrosis, and American Cancer Society Seneca County Relay for Life, serving on the leadership committee and as a temporary lobbyist in Albany NY.
But VanNostrand’s community service wasn’t limited to work. This busy woman also was a 4H leader for seven years, Vince Lombardi football secretary and cheerleading coach, FLCC Woman’s Lacrosse coach for three years, participated for 11 years in the Great Race in Auburn and has volunteered during the race at the shore line for the past seven years.
She says in her spare time, when she has any, she loves to bake; play golf, racquetball, and volleyball; go kayaking and canoeing; do aerobics, yoga and pilates, and travel around America.
VanNostrand graduated from Waterloo Central School in 1975 and from Auburn Community College. She was married in 1977 and has two children, a daughter Kelly, (Matthew) Valenti and a son Matthew, (Stephanie Steen), and f our grandchildren: Joseph, 8, and Jacob, 6, Valenti, and Ryan, 9, and Paige, 8, VanNostrand.
Ray Grifa also joined Rotary after retiring from a successful career in industry. After attending St. John Fisher College and while studying electrical engineering at FLCC, Rensselaer Polytechnic PM and John Engels Leadership Coaching, Grifa spent 34 years in the manufacturing, design, sales, and software development of automated material handling systems..
Among the positions Grifa held were VP of Programs for Hartman Material Handling Systems and Director of Operations for Retrotech, Inc. purchased by Savoye, Inc. of Group Legris. As Director of Engineering for Retrotech/Dematic Inc., purchased by Kion Group he was responsible for the oversight of all engineering disciplines including software. As Sr. Director of the Software Systems and Solutions Group, Grifa was responsible for software running the automation and the information systems.
He is a member of the International Council on Systems Engineering.
Since retiring in November 2017, Grifa said he has been “busy doing those projects that were put off until we had more time” including catching up with family and doing some traveling.
Grifa and his wife, Sandy, are the parents of son, Nathaniel, of Tyre and daughter, Shannon, of Wilmington, NC. and grandparents of Gio, Nicholas and Gianna.
Waterloo Rotary meets every Monday at 6:30 p.m. at Quality Inn. New members are always welcome.