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Executive MPA Alumna Donna Leno Gordon Receives Sloan Public Service Award

Gordon, Photo by JoJo WhildenNEW YORK, NY-March 14, 2011 –Baruch College alumna Donna Leno Gordon, RN, MS, MPA was honored for her work and dedication to public service by the Fund for the City of New York, supported by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. Gordon was presented with the Public Service Award during a ceremony on March 14 at Cooper Union.

For more than 38 years, the Fund has recognized City employees at all ranks and levels of government through its Sloan Public Service Awards, widely regarded as the Nobel Prizes of City government. This program annually honors six outstanding civil servants whose work performance and commitment to the public, “transcend not merely the ordinary but the extraordinary-- day after day and year after year.” Since 1985, the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation has supported this program.

Gordon, a 2005 graduate from the Executive MPA Program in the School of Public Affairs, is also founder the Palliative Care Unit at Coney Island Hospital. She first became interested in helping the community when she was in high school.

“I volunteered in a rehabilitation center where I could see if serving the needs of those who were suffering was something that I could do,” she said. “With all of its challenges, the answer was an overwhelming ‘yes.’ It wasn't something that I could do; it was something that I had to do.”

Before earning her XMPA from Baruch College, Gordon earned her RN from Pace University and an MS from Iona College. She has been with Health and Hospitals Corporation since 1988 and began her career at Coney Island Hospital as a primary nurse therapist in the addictive disease outpatient department. Through the years, Gordon moved up the ranks and spearheaded the development of the hospital’s Palliative Care Program, which has become the model for Palliative Care in the entire New York City public hospital system.

As Director of Behavioral Health Nursing and Palliative Care at Coney Island Hospital, Gordon also chairs HHC’s Palliative Care Council. Since 2005, more than 5,000 families have received Palliative Care consult services at Coney Island Hospital.

“I feel that it is so important for people to participate in public service because every day we have the opportunity to improve the lives of others,” Gordon says. “This is truly a privilege.”

Gordon was honored along with: Sarah Carroll, Director of Preservation with the Landmarks Perservation Commission; Jefrick R. Dean Sr., Bus Operator with the New York Transit Authority; James McConnell, Assistant Commissioner for Strategic Data with the Office of Emergency Management, Ruth E. Stark, PhD, Distinguished Professor of Chemistry and Acting Dean of Science with the City College of New York, CUNY; and Phil Weinberg, Principal of the High School of Telecommunication Arts and Technology, Department of Education.



Manny Romero, (646) 660-6141,

Mercedes Sanchez, (646) 660-6112,


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