Al Picogna, OFS, of Sanborn, NY, has been elected minister of the Secular Franciscan Order’s Saint Kateri Tekakwitha Region (encompassing most of upstate New York and northwestern Pennsylvania). He serves a three-year term. The election took place during the region’s chapter held in Syracuse Sept. 9-10.
Elected vice minister was Joanne Lockwood, OFS, of Barneveld, NY.
Picogna is a retired secondary school teacher who has served as minister of St. Anthony Fraternity in Lockport. Prior to joining that fraternity, he had served as minister of Our Lady of the Angels Fraternity in Lewiston. He has been president of St. Vincent de Paul Society at Divine Mercy Parish, where the society operates a large food pantry. A member of the Knights of Columbus, he is a third degree knight at Our Lady of Fatima Shrine in Lewiston.
Lockwood is former minister of St. Joseph Fraternity in Utica, where she had been involved in the founding and initial running of Mother Marianne's West Side Kitchen. She also has volunteered at St. John Bosco House shelter for homeless boys and young men in Utica. Lockwood works in the food service department at Masonic Care Community, Utica.
-- Secretary Katherine Schmidt, OFS, of Brockport, NY. Schmitt is former minister of Immaculate Heart of Mary Fraternity in Hilton and is a Eucharistic minister with St. Mary Parish in Holley. She is involved in ministry to nursing home residents and, with her fraternity, volunteers a couple of times a year at Mother Teresa Missionary Center at Holy Apostles Parish in Rochester. Schmidt is a retired secretary at Lakeside Memorial Hospital, Brockport.
-- Treasurer Eleanor Cox, OFS, of Angola, NY. A retiree, Cox is active in St. Francis Fraternity in Athol Springs as treasurer and in St. Anthony Parish as a Eucharistic minister. She is a board member and treasurer of Lake Shore Association of Christian Churches, which operates a food pantry.
-- Formation Director Layna Maher, OFS, of Fonda, NY. Former confirmation director for both St. Cecilia and Sacred Heart Parishes, Maher is on the Kateri Tekakwitha National Shrine council, and leads youth retreat programs there. In St. Thomas More Fraternity in Fonda, Maher has served a minister, vice minister and formation director.
-- Eastern Area Councilor Linda Quaranto, OFS, of Binghamton. A retired school principal, Quaranto is a member of St. Francis Fraternity in Binghamton and is active in St. Francis of Assisi Parish. She has been involved in a number of community organizations, such as: Special Olympics coordinator; Broome County ARC Board; director, Early Childhood Coalition of Broome County; Holy Family Vocational Orphanage Foundation (orphanage is in Uganda, Africa).
-- Central Area Councilor Catherine “Katie” Koscinski, OFS, of Utica, NY. This is her second term. She is former minister of St. Joseph Fraternity. A retired mental health worker, she is involved in St. Joseph-St. Patrick’s Parish as a catechist, Eucharistic minister, lector and RCIA facilitator. She was involved in the founding of Mother Marianne’s West Side Kitchen and serves as the soup kitchen’s volunteer coordinator.
-- Western Area Councilor Mike Hall, OFS, of Niagara Falls, NY. He is a member of St. Anthony Fraternity in Lockport and is active in Divine Mercy Parish in Niagara Falls as a lector. Hall is a member of Sacred Heart Men’s Prayer Group, Niagara Falls, and the Knight of Columbus Council 247. He is a boat salesman with Anchor Marine on Grand Island.
-- Western Area Councilor Carol Onuffer, OFS, of Waterford, PA. She is minister of St. Peter Fraternity in Erie, PA and is active in music ministry as a flutist at All Saints Parish, Waterford. Prior to moving to Waterford, Onuffer was a Eucharistic minister, catechist and children’s liturgy director at another parish. She works as a nanny and volunteers at soup kitchens, homeless shelters and Asbury Wood Nature Center.