On November 12, 1975 the Poughkeepsie Branch held a dinner at the Vassar Alumni House to commemorate the International Women's Year and to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the founding of our branch. Eight women were honored for outstanding service to the residents of Dutchess County. Since that time, the Poughkeepsie Branch AAUW has selected a local woman to honor as our Woman of the Year. These women exemplify the goals stated in AAUW's mission statement:
The American Association of University Women advances equity
for women and girls through advocacy, education, philanthropy, and research.
We invite you to nominate candidates for consideration of this honor using the form linked below to print, fill in and mail. Your nomination will be in consideration for two years from the date you submit the form to one of the Woman of the Year Committee Co-Chairs: Gail Sisti, 313 Forest Rd, Wallkill, NY 12589 or Mary Lou Davis, 125 Andrews Rd, Lagrangeville, NY 12540
Diane Pedevillano has been the Executive Director of the Mid-Hudson Children’s Museum from 1994 through 2006. She has her Masters Degree in Physical Therapy from Columbia University specializing in pediatrics and early intervention. She is a mother of five children and has been the business manager for her husband’s family practice since 1986. She is completely committed to providing opportunities for all children to reach their full potential and to enhancing the quality of life in her community.
Through her work with the Children’s Museum, Diane successfully led a growing team of talented individuals in the museum's steady growth. As Executive Director, her responsibilities included community relations spokesperson, permanent site development, oversight of the capital campaign, capacity building and site operations. Her involvement with her physical therapy profession and her children’s schools and various activities helped to strengthen collaborations within the community.
In March of 2002, the Mid-Hudson Children’s Museum moved to the banks of the Hudson River at 75 North Water Street in the City of Poughkeepsie. In March of 2004, the museum financed the purchase of the Museum buildings (including the main building and waterfront pavilion). In this new location, the museum has become an educational resource center, family destination, tourist attraction and catalyst for downtown/ waterfront revitalization. The museum offers interactive exhibits and programs which educate over 60,000 annual visitors about the environment, arts, culture, history, health and science each year. During the past two years the museum board and staff worked with consultants to perform a community assessment and developed a Long Term Strategic Plan, Board Development and Resource Development Plan as the basis for a recently completed Three Year Business Plan that will guide the museum to future growth and continued financial stability.
Diane serves as a board member for the Children’s Services Council of Dutchess County and the Child Care Council of Dutchess County and a member of the Zero to Three Partnership. She has served as an advisory board member for the Poughkeepsie City Schools Even Start Program, past president and treasurer for the various Parent Teachers Associations for the Poughkeepsie City School District and as the past Public Relations liaison and treasurer for the Catskill District of the American Physical Therapy Association. Her involvement with her church includes being a member of the folk group, and past children’s choir director and religious education teacher. She coordinates the annual "Autumn in the Park" festival in the City of Poughkeepsie as a neighborhood volunteer (since 1988), is a sustaining member of the Jr. League of Poughkeepsie, as well as a volunteer for Adriance Memorial Library.