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Meet our LaSalle School Volunteers

JAMES BUZON

Jim Buzon worked as a machinist for 10 years. Changed careers and attended college as a non traditional student for education. Graduated in 1995, taught Junior High School science and math at St. Mary’s in Oneonta for 14 years. After the school closed in 2011, Jim became town supervisor for 4 years during recovery from hurricane Irene. After he left that position then taught environmental science at St. Ann’s in Albany. Jim is very active in his church and community, life member in his local fire department, board member of his local ambulance company, member of the Schoharie county planning committee, board of assessment review chairperson, chairperson of the building committee for his new town emergency shelter and ambulance building. Jim served and chaired many fundraising committees and presently enrolled in a course to become a home inspector.

CHUCK FININ 

Charles “Chuck” Finin is the former CEO and founder of Mesa Technical Associates, a company focused on engineering, furnishing, and installing dc power systems.

Chuck retired about nine years ago and turned his attention to volunteer opportunities within the community including pastoral care at the local hospital and Residents Encounter Christ, a Catholic volunteer prison ministry group within the Albany diocese. He worked directly in four of the six prisons within the diocese and served several terms as Chair of the REC Council, the oversight group for the volunteers. After a recent introduction to LaSalle School by his cousin Jerry Finin, Chuck is looking forward to ministry work with the residents and staff.

JERRY FININ 

Gerard “Jerry” Finin is from Albany’s Pine Hills neighborhood and first came to know LaSalle through campus sleigh riding activities as a kid. A graduate of the University at Albany, he served in the United States Peace Corps/Philippines. Following doctoral studies at Cornell University he joined the East-West Center, an Asia-Pacific educational institution on the University of Hawaii campus. As Director of the Pacific Islands Development Program he managed research, degree scholarships and public diplomacy programs across Oceania. He has served as a consultant to the US Department of State, DOD’s Asia-Pacific Center for Security Studies, and the Asian Development Bank. In 2021 he retired from teaching at Cornell. Dr. Finin is the author of two books and has published in The New York Times, The Guardian, and Far Eastern Economic Review. His current activities include serving as a Trustee of the Rensselaerville Library, Rensselaerville Volunteer Fire Company and, most importantly, coordinator for the LaSalle School Bike Club.

JIM HOON

Jim Hoon retired from his career as an information professional, also known as a librarian, working in the corporate world in the medical and business arenas, dealing mostly with commercial databases, and serving physicians, nurses, administrators, writers, and artists.  Jim has done some volunteer work before, but in the NYC area.

Having retired to Columbia County, and looking for more purpose, he read an article in the Albany Times Union about the newly forming Ignatian Volunteer Corps, and two years later found his way to LaSalle School, after a stint working for a prison ministry program, and Catholic Charities food events.

Jim has always enjoyed working with youth [formerly in Spanish Harlem helping kids to learn English], and so excited about my new role at LaSalle heading up the new school library with the help of students.

BOB MELIA

With retirement in December of 2021, Bob wanted to redirect his energies to charitable and Christian organizations and is a volunteer for a handful of such organizations.  The LaSalle school was appealing due to its mission, goals, and approach to the children it seeks to help.  Raising three boys in the Phila area, Bob has a good sense of empathy with the challenges young men experience when they try to find their way in the world.  Bob hopes to bring a sense of spiritual healing to the young men with a renewed emphasis on their faith.  Finding the courage to rely on their faith when moving forward in life will bring forth a positive element to all those that participate in the faith sharing sessions and Sunday mass services.

Prior to December of 2021, Bob was the Executive Director of the Institutional Retirement Income Council  (IRIC) where Bob led a group of Retirement Plan Advisors, DC executives, DC service providers and investment firms that seek to deliver institutional retirement income products and income solutions through the DC system thereby delivering additional security and additional income to plan participants.  Prior to assuming the Executive Director role at IRIC, Bob was Vice President of Product Development for the Retirement Plan Services Product and Solutions Management team at Lincoln Financial Group for 11 years.  In this role,  Bob holds a bachelor’s degree in Economics from Assumption College in Worcester, Massachusetts and an MBA in Business Economics from Drexel University.

 

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