NEWBURGH – Mount Saint Mary College was proud to celebrate two outstanding pillars of the local community at the Tenth Annual Gala Reception on Friday, December 6.
Derrik R. Wynkoop, President and CEO of Walden Savings Bank, and David Potack, President of Unitex Textile Rental Services, Inc. were honored with the Joseph A. Bonura Award for Leadership Excellence.
This award recognizes individuals whose professional accomplishments and approach to management reflect the same commitment to quality, concern for neighbors, and shared prosperity that have exemplified the career and character of restaurateur Joseph A. Bonura. The local businessman owns Anthony’s Pier 9 in New Windsor, N.Y. and the Poughkeepsie Grand Hotel in Poughkeepsie, N.Y., among other businesses.
“The Mount appreciates the honorees’ support and for being incredible advocates for the Mount,” said Kathleen Barton, director of Advancement Events at the college.
The gala also recognized the Mount’s Sr. Agnes Boyle, OP and Senator William Larkin, both of whom passed away earlier this year. Sr. Boyle and Senator Larkin gave much of themselves in the name of the Mount and will be missed, noted Nikki Khurana-Baugh, Vice President for Advancement at Mount Saint Mary College and the Gala’s master of ceremonies.
More than 200 guests attended the event, held at the Kaplan Family Mathematics, Science and Technology Center.
The Gala raised a record $127,000 in gifts, sponsorships, and ticket sales, thanks to the passion, energy, and hard work of the honorees and the Gala committee. The funds enable the college to provide scholarships and an affordable, values-based education to thousands of deserving students, many of whom are among the first in their families to attend college.
“It’s an honor to receive the Joseph A. Bonura Award for Leadership Excellence,” said Wynkoop, president and CEO of Walden Savings Bank.
Wynkoop became the 14th President and Chief Executive Officer of Walden Savings Bank in 2011. A year later, he was elected to the bank’s Board of Directors. Prior to joining Walden Savings Bank, Wynkoop was Vice President of Retail Delivery & Marketing at Hudson Valley Federal Credit Union (HVFCU), where he was responsible for 21 branch locations, HVFCU Financial Services, and more.
He served as an adjunct professor at Mount Saint Mary College from 1992 to 1999 and is a frequent guest speaker at the college.
“This is an absolutely amazing college,” said Wynkoop. “I absolutely love the community spirit here that I know is still important to this day.”
To that end, Wynkoop and Walden Savings Bank collaborated with the Mount to establish and endow the Medici Scholars Program. This selective program has undergraduate business students work with Hudson Valley not-for-profit and arts-related charitable organizations.
Wynkoop has always been inspired to serve his community, he said. Wynkoop is a past Chairman for the Community Foundation of Orange and Sullivan County and has served on the board since 2001. Also, he is the Chairman for the SUNY Orange Foundation and has been on the board since 2010. He became a Board Member of the Orange County Partnership in 2016. Wynkoop was founder and Co-President of the Walden Community Council from 1996 to 1999. Wynkoop currently serves as Chairman of Marist’s Hudson Valley Scholars Program
“Looking at my career in charitable work, it’s always been centered on education,” he explained. “Surrounding yourself with education – the bright-eyed ideas of a 20-something – it’s just amazing.”
To that end, Wynkoop announced that he would be making a $2,500 donation to the Mount for a new scholarship.
Like five generations of his family before him, Wynkoop currently resides in Walden. He is blessed with his wife of 30 years, Allison, and his three children: Sara, Christopher, and Matthew. He received a Bachelor of Science in Marketing and a Master of Business Administration in Accounting from Marist College.
Potack, president of Unitex Textile Rental Services, Inc., said that he was humbled to receive the Joseph A. Bonura Award for Leadership Excellence.
“Thank you for the honor and recognition,” he said, “It’s very meaningful to me to be here tonight with so many people that are important to my life. I’m happy they’re able to share in this moment,” including his wife Samantha, and their two children, Alexa and Justin. “I thank you for your love and support, always.”
He added, “I’d also like to recognize the members of our Unitex team here tonight, who came to support this great event. I’ve learned so much from all of you, and it’s helped me to become a far better leader…At the end of the day, leadership is about engagement. It’s about the courage to act and the willingness to fail, while chasing success and chasing goals.”
Founded in 1922 by Max Potack, Potack’s great-grandfather, Unitex is a leader in the medical uniform and linen rental industry. The company is currently the largest family-owned healthcare service provider in the country. Unitex currently operates 11 commercial laundry facilities in the northeast United States, focused on providing services to healthcare clients and processing more than 300 million pounds of linen annually. Potack is a fourth-generation family member in the business and works closely with his father, Michael, and brother, Robert.
Potack, who resides in Chappaqua, received his college degree from Washington University, St. Louis, Mo. in 1995. After graduation, Potack held various positions within Unitex, including Customer Service Representative, District Manager, and General Manager, prior to his appointment as Vice President of Sales and Marketing, and now President. His vast range of experience within the company gives him an unparalleled understanding of the inner workings of Unitex and allows him to lead with great knowledge and purpose.
For several years, Potack served as Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Textile Rental Services Association of America (TRSA). In this position, Potack brings analytical and outreach skills that help make a difference in the industry. Previously, he also served as Vice Chairman and Chairman of the TRSA Government Affairs Committee.
Community is very important to Potack: “My parents raised us with a clear understanding of the importance of what it means to be active in our communities,” he noted. “We have dutifully carried this tradition forward in our own house.”
He is the Treasurer of the Newburgh Community Land Bank, a not-for-profit community-based program; a member of the Yale New Haven Children’s Hospital Council; and the current Chairman of Montefiore St. Luke’s Cornwall Hospital Board of Trustees.