Valley Central Education Foundation

July 2017

On Thursday, October 5, 2017, the Valley Central Education Foundation will host its Sixth Annual Harvest Reception.  This year, we will be honoring three members from the Valley Central community who are examples of “Sowing the Seed, Reaping the Dream”; Mr. and Mrs. Marc Newman and Mr. Steve Brescia.

 Brenda and Marc Newman are the recipients of the “Sowing the Seed” Award. They both have had long careers in the Valley Central School District. Brenda Newman joined the VC family in 1969 when she began her teaching career at Walden Elementary teaching grades 3, 4, and 5 through 2004. During this time, she mentored 24 student teachers, served as Director of the Drama Club, Editor of the student newspaper, grade Level Representative on the Principal’s Council and was Site Coordinator of BOCES “Youth-at-Risk” Program. In addition, Brenda served as the Assistant Chairperson of the Bicentennial Committee on the American Revolution in 1974-1975, was appointed Director of Mentoring and was a member of the Staff Development Committee. She served as a Union Representative for the Valley Central Teachers’ Association and was an Instructor/Presenter at workshops for the New York State Social Studies Council, to educate teachers regarding the New York State Social Studies Grade Four testing requirements. Brenda co-authored two publications, “Orange County Journal” and “Albany Gazette” which were created for students in grade four to teach mandated New York State history throughout New York State, with articles, comprehension questions, photos, and educational games. Marc Newman began his teaching career at Valley Central High School in 1969.  During his 33 years at Valley Central, which included 30 years of summer school, he taught every history course offered to students in grades 9-12.   In the early 1970s, Marc created the VC Dance Club, teaching over 50 students dance routines from major Broadway Shows, resulting in an annual show and raising money for three funds: The VC Scholarship Fund, the VC Music Department Fund and the VC Vocational Arts Fund. In the 1990s, Marc held the position of Department Chair and Supervisor of History for Grades 6-12, coordinating courses, staff and programs. Marc also served as the academic supervisor of Beta Tau, the History Society.  From 1970s to the 2000s, Marc received 11 Awards for both Education and History, as well as 4 additional commendations. Two of the Awards were National Awards: The Gold Medal for the Most Outstanding Teacher’s Award for Excellence in the United States and the American Revolution Award. Three of the Awards were major NYS Awards, i.e.: The NYS Outstanding Service Award, The Most Outstanding NYS Social Studies Teachers Award, The Most Outstanding American History Teacher’s Award for NYS. He also provided continuing education to teachers regarding NYS History and American History for S.U.N.Y at New Paltz.  Toward the end of his teaching career, he created several books for the American History faculty. During their tenure and involvement in the Valley Central community, they have positively influenced the lives of many of our students.

 Mr. Steve Brecia is a graduate of Valley Central’s Class of 1981. He is receiving the “Reaping the Dream” Award as he has taken the seed implanted during his years at VC and is reaping the dreams planted during that time. Steve has served as the Mayor of the Village of Montgomery for 27 years and 3 years as a Trustee.  He has served as a Legislator in Orange County for 23 years and was the Chairman for 3 of those years. He is a graduate of the University of Tennessee earning a Bachelors’ Degree in Political Science. He has participated on many committees such as Goshen Historic Track Board of Directors, Historic Montgomery Association, UNICO National (Newburgh Chapter), Wallkill Masonic Lodge #627, General Montgomery Day Committee, Montgomery Fire Department, Town of Montgomery Republican Committee, Walden Rotary Club and Orange County Airport Committee.

 The Harvest Reception promises to be a very special evening as all our honorees have touched the lives of many children and we are so proud to acknowledge them.  Many community members and key business leaders from throughout the region are invited to attend this exciting event.  Proceeds will support the Foundation’s work to enhance, maintain and promote opportunities for students enrolled in the Valley Central School District, while supporting creative educational endeavors.

 Your support is crucial to the Valley Central Education Foundation’s mission.  Therefore, we are writing to formally invite you to be a sponsor.  As a member of the Community Foundation of Orange and Sullivan, your sponsorship will receive worthy recognition, as well as tax-deductible benefits.  Enclosed is a list of sponsorship opportunities.  You may also reserve advanced tickets with the Sponsorship Intent Form.  Kindly return your completed form by Monday, July 31, 2017, should you wish to be included on the invitation and in early media releases.  Payment is not due until September 11, 2017.

 Thank you for your anticipated support!  If you have any questions, please call Sheila Lease-Murphy at 914-213-4609 or email


 Sheila Lease-Murphy