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Polly Vincent DiCesare Scholarship

2021 Polly Vincent DiCesare Scholarship

Polly Vincent DiCesare was employed at the Presbyterian Home for Central New York in New Hartford for 38 years as director of social services. Throughout her career she was instrumental in helping the organization grow from an 80-bed nursing home to a 242-bed health care facility which offers a wide array of services including short term rehabilitation, respite, adult day, dementia and Parkinson’s care. Polly had a strong work ethic and her tenacity served her well, especially after being diagnosed with stage IV Glioblastoma. After undergoing surgeries and treatment, she returned to her position providing a testament to the power of the human spirit to overcome any challenge placed before it. In so doing, she inspired her co-workers and empowered her residents to confront their own setbacks head-on.

On Sept. 15, 2015, after overcoming tremendous odds and fighting her cancer for over two years, Polly passed away. To commemorate her dedication to the field of social work and the importance Polly placed on the education and training of her social services staff, the Polly Vincent DiCesare Educational Memorial Fund was established by her family.

Scholarship Description

One scholarship per year is awarded to assist a social worker from a LeadingAge New York member facility in attending the 2021 Nursing & Social Work Professionals Virtual Annual Conference, November 4, 9, 15, 16, 18 & 30, 2021.

The scholarship underwrites the full conference registration of $249

Past winners include:

2020 – Stephanie Zevon, Executive Director of Social Work, Cobble Hill Health Center

2019 - Stacey Kleinberg, Director of Social Work, Andrus on Hudson, Hastings-on-Hudson.

2018 - Betsy Peckham, social worker, MVHS Rehabilitation & Nursing Center

2017 - Julia Joachim, director of social work, Methodist Home for Nursing & Rehabilitation

2016 - Courtney Thompson, social worker, Oneida Healthcare Center Extended Care Facility.


Directors of social work and social work professionals from a LeadingAge New York member facility are eligible. New directors of social services or social workers not holding a director position are strongly urged to apply.

The scholarship winner acknowledges that he/she must attend the full conference and has received permission from his/her organization to attend, if necessary.

Selection Process

The committee, comprised of members of the DiCesare family and Foundation for Long Term Care staff, reviews all applications recieved and awards one scholarship.


Contact Cathy Bongermino at 518.867.8383 or cbongermino@leadingageny.org.