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Deborah Fay Selected as Premier 2021 Legacy Award Winner

Volunteer New York! has announced that Deborah Fay, Manager of Government Affairs, NY at Entergy, has been selected to receive Volunteer New York!’s premier Legacy Award to be presented at the 41st Annual Volunteer Spirit Awards on Friday, April 9, 2021. The Legacy Award is given to a prominent leader in Westchester with a strong personal and professional commitment to volunteerism. The award ceremony will take place virtually. The Volunteer Spirit Awards have evolved over the last four decades into one of the most inspiring, don’t-miss and talked about events in the region. Last year’s inaugural live-streaming event proved that the magic of this celebration could still be shared and felt throughout our community virtually, as viewership totaled over ten times the attendance of past sold-out in-person Volunteer Spirit Award events.

“On behalf of Volunteer New York!’s Board we are honored to present the 2021 Legacy Award to Deborah Fay in recognition of her personal and professional contributions to local volunteerism and nonprofits in our community,” said Valerie Mason Cunningham, Volunteer New York! Board Chair. “Part of Deb’s legacy is the transformational impact she has had on countless organizations that are able to sustainably fulfill their missions for years to come due to her support.”

The Legacy Award is the only award that is presented at the event by the Volunteer New York! Board of Directors. Besides being given to a prominent leader in Westchester who has a personal and professional commitment to volunteerism and Volunteer New York! that leader’s business is exemplary when it comes to supporting the local nonprofit sector and encouraging deep employee engagement in service. Previous recipients have been Betty Cotton (2014, then called the Chairman’s Award), Mark Rollins (2015), Matt McCrosson (2016), George Troyano (2017), Geri Shapiro (2018), Doug Rogers (2019), and The Gallin Family (2020).

Sponsorship opportunities for the Volunteer Spirit Awards event are now available at or by reaching out to Elisabeth Vieselmeyer at 914-227-9307 or Information regarding the recipients of the six 2021 Volunteer Spirit Awards and ticket availability will be announced by early February.

This year’s Volunteer Spirit Awards will be a virtual breakfast, in keeping with the highly popular format of previous in-person events. “It is my absolute joy to get to be the first to announce that we are bringing #thebreakfastback,” said Volunteer New York! Executive Director, Jeanette Gisbert. “And this year’s awards will be able to once again take place in the morning as was the long-standing tradition!”

For more info about past Legacy Award Winners visit


Deborah (Deb) has been a longtime friend to Volunteer New York! and countless other local nonprofits and she is a staunch believer in the power of volunteerism to join communities together for the greater good.

Deb joined Entergy, an integrated energy company, in 2002 and is currently Manager of Government Affairs in New York State. She also serves as the company’s Corporate Contributions Coordinator supporting Entergy’s commitment to social responsibility, which has contributed more than $30 million over 20 years to more than 100 organizations. Deb was eager to take on this special role to continue the company’s legacy of supporting local nonprofit organizations and support the community in which she lives and works.

In addition to her role at Entergy, Deb volunteers as a Director on the Hudson Valley Gateway Chamber of Commerce Board. She has also served on the boards of Westchester Library System, Hendrick Hudson Free Library, Cortlandt Volunteer Ambulance Corps, Today’s Students Tomorrow’s Teachers, and The Paramount Center for the Arts. Deb is the former Deputy Mayor for the Village of Buchanan, where she and her husband, Richard, reside and are the proud parents of daughters Meredith and Deidre.

Deb’s legacy of service first began in childhood with her mother and father’s inspiration. Her mother encouraged her volunteer activities with the March of Dimes and American Cancer Society, instilling in her the idea that “volunteering is not an option, it’s an obligation.” Her father, a World War II veteran, was also a model for Deb with his public service. She has continued to follow their motto throughout her work and personal life by supporting causes that celebrate local volunteerism and has inspired her daughters to become volunteers themselves.

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