MAHOPAC, N.Y. - Mahopac community activist and volunteer Wendy Greenberg will be recognized later this month for her work with the Putnam/Northern Westchester Women’s Resource Center (WRC) at its Annual 5K Walk to End Domestic Violence.
Renowned for her contributions to the community in multiple capacities, Greenberg is both a board member of the Resource Center and a vital member of Temple Beth Shalom in Mahopac. In her nearly 15-year tenure as a board member at the WRC, she has chaired the food and wine event, which is the organization’s largest fundraiser, drawing over 400 attendees every year.
The 5K Walk to End Domestic Violence will be held Sunday, Sept. 22, from 8:30 to 11:30 a.m., at Franklin D. Roosevelt State Park, Lot 4, at 2957 Crompond Road in Yorktown Heights.
Greenberg was raised in Flushing, Queens, attended the University of Wisconsin and graduated from New York University with double majors in sociology and political science. She received a Master of Science in education from Hunter College and her teacher certification in reading from Western Connecticut State University. During her 40-year career, Greenberg taught kindergarten and second grade and was a reading teacher, literacy coach, teacher trainer, curriculum developer, and an administrative assistant.
After retiring as a New York City educator, Greenberg noted that “two of my friends were on the [Women’s Resource Center] board and thought I would be a tremendous asset.”
“I was blown away by the extraordinary work they were doing,” Greenberg said. “I wanted to be a part of it in any way I could. As a teacher, I saw many [students] who were being abused physically and psychologically and I always tried to help. I was happy to use whatever skills I had, as a person and an educator [with the Women’s Resource Center.]”
Elaine Jacobs, a fellow WRC board member who helped recruit Greenberg, called her “a go-to person.”
“She is both energetic and organized,” Jacobs said. “Give her a task and you know it will be well done. She does it because she understands and supports the mission of the Women’s Resource Center. I think one of the best things I have done for the WRC is getting Wendy on the board.”
For all their efforts throughout their varied fellowships, Greenberg and her husband, Joel, are modest about their activism. When asked what wellspring she draws from to give so much, Greenberg refers to the kindness others have shown her over the years and through her own tribulations. The Greenbergs are the matriarch and patriarch of a blended family, which includes Marc and Lisa, Robert and Michele, Sarah and Rudy, and eight grandchildren.
Ann Ellsworth, executive director of the WRC, calls Greenberg her “iron butterfly.”
“She has the strength to survive all that life has thrown at her while inside still beats a loving heart and compassionate spirit,” Ellsworth said. “I am thrilled to honor such a strong woman. Wendy is a role model for how to create a peaceful world.”
Greenberg had equal praise for Ellsworth and her staffers, calling them “selfless people, extraordinary.”
“They don’t do it for the money,” Greenberg said. “They do it because it is in their hearts.”
Asked how she felt when she learned she was being feted by the Center at the 5K Walk, Greenberg described herself as overwhelmed and almost at a loss for words.
“I was so floored, I didn’t know what to say,” she recalled. “So many have done so much, so I was overjoyed, but also not worthy. It’s just wonderful to be part of the organization. I was tongue-tied when they told me. And if you know me, that’s unusual.”
The Women’s Resource Center provides advocacy, education, and services to eliminate domestic violence against women and children and promote gender equality. For more information about the Putnam/Northern Westchester Women’s Resource Center or the Walk to End Domestic Violence, call 845-628-9284.