news. Pat Lanza passed away yesterday. Pat, called the Mother Theresa of
Westchester by many, donated millions of dollars to the town over the years for
many worthwhile programs. Last year, alone, Pat wrote a check for over $200,000
to the town (through her Lanza Family Foundation): the arts and culture program
is completely funded by the Lanza family Foundation. Was previously funded by
taxpayers. The Summer Police Youth Camp is funded by the Lanza foundation. Was
previously funded by taxpayers. The Xposure after school program is a Lanza
Family foundation grant recipient. Six figure donation annually for the after
school program. The Theodore Young Community Center has received grants for
after the library announced plans to close the library on Sunday's Pat gave the
town a big check to continue library programs on Sunday's. She has supported a
food kitchen that serves the hungry at Union Baptist Church. I can go on and on.
Pat loved Greenburgh and did so much for our community.
A number of
years ago I went on a bicycle charity ride from Westchester to Philadelphia to
raise funds for Habitat for Humanity. I reached out to Pat asking for her
sponsorship. She made an initial donation of $1000. She then met Jim Killoran of
Habitat, started observing the work they do. She has since given Habitat for
Humanities over $2.5 million.
contributed significant dollars to many organizations and worthwhile causes in
Westchester and around the world. She was one of the most caring people I knew
--someone who truly made the world a better place. She enhanced the lives of so
many people through her generosity. Her loss is a big loss for our town. And,
following article appeared in the Journal News.. PAUL FEINER
– Patricia Lanza, a philanthropist who was known for her warmth and personal
interest in people — and the causes her contributions helped — died Thursday of
cancer, four days before she would have turned 81.
the Lanza Family Foundation gave millions of dollars over the years to groups
ranging from El Centro Hispano in White Plains to the Women's Research and
Education Fund in Rye.
Hispano first heard from her after she read a news story about its scholarships
the newspaper and we received a check from her a few days later for $500 with a
little note that said, 'It's about time that someone's doing something for
Hispanics,' " said Isabel Villar, executive director.
said Lanza helped expand the scholarships, create mentoring programs and
establish a technology center.
tell you that she's the most generous, caring, visionary and philanthropic human
being that many of us have ever known," she said.
Lanza of Garrison, one of of Lanza's three sons, called his mom the "Mother
Teresa of Westchester." She did a lot of work locally but also improved lives
for people in Africa, Vietnam and elsewhere. She learned several weeks ago she
had stage 4 cancer, but was at peace when she died, he said.
Lanza said his mother "genuinely cared about getting people to a different level
in their lives" and "we look forward to helping to carry on the legacy of what
she's done because she really was special, hands on."
Lanza has been helping Legal Services of the Hudson Valley since 1999, said CEO
Barbara Finkelstein. Her primary interest was children, and she helped Legal
Services represent thousands of them, particularly those with
just one of the biggest philanthropists in Westchester County and just gave so
much of herself as well as her money," Finkelstein said.
walked into the offices of Habitat for Humanity of Westchester and started
helping Jim Killoran, CEO and executive director, by writing letters and doing
other office work. He didn't know about her financial means but "one day she
just laid a check on us," he said. All told, the foundation has given $2.5
million to his group.
I'm sad, but I celebrate her life," Killoran said Friday.
$750,000 challenge grant from Lanza, the Food Bank for Westchester would not
have been able to renovate a facility in Elmsford, said Katy Coppinger, senior
development director. It needed $2.2 million and had raised $700,000. Donors
matched the grant in four months.
Lieberman, director of annual giving for the Westchester Community College
Foundation, said Lanza was an "extraordinary person." Since 2000, she provided
hundreds of thousands of dollars in scholarships for students who have succeeded
despite major challenges. The college would set up luncheons so Lanza could meet
wanted opportunities to be available to everyone, regardless of their economic
status," Lieberman said.
survived by three sons: James, 53; Louie, 52; and Anthony, 47. Her husband,
Frank, a top executive and co-founder of L-3 Communications Holdings, a defense
contractor, died in 2006. The couple set up the foundation.
family is planning a celebration of her life a week from Monday. Details haven't