OUR 2023 PARADE HONOREES
Vice Admiral Joanna M. Nunan
14th Superintendent of the
United States Merchant Marine Academy
Vice Admiral Joanna Nunan assumed command of the United States Merchant Marine Academy on December 8, 2022. She is the first woman in Academy history to hold this role.
Nunan, who spent more than three decades in the U.S. Coast Guard, has commanded units at multiple levels both afloat and ashore. Before her retirement, she was the Coast Guard’s Deputy for Personnel Readiness. In that role, she oversaw the Coast Guard’s entire personnel enterprise, including the recruitment, training, support, and retention of all active duty, reserve, and civilian personnel. She also supervised the Coast Guard Academy and served on its Board of Trustees.
She also served as the Assistant Commandant for Human Resources. In that role, among her many responsibilities, she helped spearhead efforts to expand diversity and inclusion in the Coast Guard, including formulating policy changes focused on increasing the retention of women in the service. She also served as a member of the Coast Guard’s Sexual Assault Prevention, Response, and Recovery Committee.
Earlier in her career, she served as the Military Advisor to Department of Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson and John Kelly, as well as the Military Assistant to Department of Transportation Secretary Norman Mineta. She also served more than nine years at sea—including commanding two buoy tenders—and previously served as the Commander of the Ninth Coast Guard District and as Commander of Coast Guard Sector Honolulu.
A Bridgeport, Connecticut native, Nunan graduated from the Coast Guard Academy in 1987 and received her Master of Business Administration from Rensselaer Polytechnic. She also holds several Coast Guard merchant marine licenses, including Master of vessels of not more than 1,600 gross tons and 3rd Mate on vessels of unlimited tonnage, upon oceans.
Man of the Year
Robert Moravek - Retired Vice-President of Chartering, Southern Star Shipping
Bob was born and raised in Bayside Hills, the youngest of 4 children. He lived in Bayside Hills until moving the family to Douglas Manor in 2000. His wife Becky was born and raised in Douglas Manor where they brought up their two children Megan and Jack.
Megan, a teacher at Bayside High School, and her husband Mike, a teacher at St. Francis Prep, have a beautiful daughter Nora. Jack is a FDNY Firefighter, who in his spare time, handles the moorings for the Douglaston Yacht Squadron. As a father, and now grandfather, he could not be more than proud of his family.
Bob has been volunteering with the Little Neck-Douglaston Memorial Day Parade for over 2 decades now, driving Honorees in a classic car or working in the Food Court cooking and serving the many marchers in the parade. He has done this in memory of his father.
Bob’s father, Anthony J. Moravek, was a World War II Army Veteran who served in the Normandy Invasion, earned the rank of First Lieutenant and was a Purple Heart recipient. Bob’s dad was very active in St. Roberts Parish along with the Catholic War Veterans and the Veterans of Foreign Wars. Some of Bob’s fondest memories were of the local Bayside Memorial Day Parade with his father participating in the Honor Guard every year. His father always taught him to honor Family, Friends and Community – something he strives for each day of his life.
In addition to Parade volunteering:
He has served for many years on the Board of Directors of the Douglaston Yacht Squadron and has held all Flag Officer ranks including that of Commodore.
He was President of the Douglaston Club and served on its Board of Directors for many years.
He contributes many hours each year to help keep the Douglaston Junior Sailing Program’s "coach/chase boats" in running order and safe condition.
He volunteers to help the Douglas Manor Association on the waterfront by moving the floating docks into position every Spring/Fall for the boaters and swimmers every year.
He currently serves on the Board of Directors of the College Point Yacht Club.
He is the presiding officer of the 25 Club, an industry trade group to which he belongs.
Bob’s motto is "always pay it forward, help those who need help"
Woman of the Year
Born in Queens, but raised on Long Island, Karen Dinegar returned to Queens when she married Tom Dinegar, an Army Veteran, in 1990, and since 1991 has called Little Neck her hometown.
Karen has always served as a volunteer, beginning at a young age when she was a candy striper! At SUNY Oneonta, where she graduated with a BA in Literature, Karen was the Service Vice President and then President of the local chapter of Alpha Phi Omega, the world’s largest intercollegiate (co-ed) service fraternity. After graduation, she was active with the American Red Cross helping run blood drives and later fundraising events.
After settling in Little Neck, Karen became involved with Green Thumb, a division of the NYC Parks Department, created to restore vacant lands as community gardens. Karen was instrumental in founding the Pembroke Community Garden and helped save the garden from development by then mayor Rudolph Giuliani.
“I think that [Garden] fight gave me the confidence to work hard for my community. I made a small change, but I wrote this kind of manifesto that my husband read at City Hall for me because I was nursing my youngest child. I was interviewed by The New York Times and we won that fight to save the garden. I was stunned that with a lot of research, dedication and nerve, one woman could make a difference.” She still serves as Garden Coordinator for that site.
In 1992, Karen joined the Little Neck-Douglaston Memorial Day Parade Committee. She started out making the coffee every week but quickly took on more responsibilities. When the Committee reorganized in 2014, Karen became the Director of Operations. In 2018, she became Vice Chair and continued in that capacity until 2022. “I loved working with the veterans and military. Even though I only saw some of those guys once a year, we talked and emailed and I felt a real connection and affection for them. We cannot do enough to repay our Vets for their service to us.” She also volunteered at the NYC Veterans Day Parade in the VIP area and the ceremony stage.
When her children were old enough for school, Karen served on the board of every PTA in every school that her children attended, much to their dismay. They are eternally grateful there’s no PTA at their workplaces!
Continuing her alliance with the Parks Department, Karen joined the Board of the Udalls Cove Preservation Committee in 2009 in which she currently serves as Secretary. A past Woman of the Year of the Little Neck Douglaston Lions Club, she also served on the Board of the Douglaston and Little Neck Historical Society.
In 1987, Karen started her own title abstract company and continues to work as a sole proprietor. She has three wonderful children: Thomas, Meghan, Devon and son-in-law Brendan, who have all worked as parade volunteers helping to make this neighborhood tradition a great success. She was married to Tom (who also served as Veterans Coordinator for the Parade) for nearly 31 years until his untimely death in 2020. She enjoys spending time with her family and friends, her walking group The LN Steps, and her book clubs. Karen has recently become an avid sailor and completed a round-trip sail to Martha’s Vineyard in October! “Things have changed dramatically for me, but I still love my hometown and am very humbled by this recognition.”
Community Service Award
SEAN M. WALSH
Sean M. Walsh was born and raised in Jackson Heights, Queens. He was chair of the Jackson Heights Civic Association and served on Community Board 3. After a few years in Manhattan, he moved to Douglaston in 1982 with his wife Dr. Christine A. Walsh, a renowned pediatric cardiologist, Here, they raise their three children Dr. Kathleen Walsh (also a pediatric cardiologist, the first mother doctor combination), Sean Michael actor/director, Stephen computer graphics. Sean has served on Community Board 11 and currently serves as president of the Douglaston Civic Association for a second time. He has been a strong advocate for the preservation of our neighborhood and our water front.
Sean M. Walsh is currently a Computer Science Professor at the N.J. Institute of Technology, Graduate School. He also serves as Special Counsel in the law firm of Zeichner Ellman & Krause LLP specializing in cyber investigations and national security matters.
Previously, he worked in the US DOJ as an Assistant General Counsel in the National Security Law Branch of the FBI's General Counsel’s Office. There he provided legal advice to the Bureau’s Counter Intelligence and Counter Terrorism programs, and as the national security counsel to the FBI Cyber division.
He has received many awards and honors among which are the FBI Director’s Award for preventing multiple cyber terrorist attacks on the homeland and the Director of National Intelligence Cyber Award for advancing national cyber policy and cyber investigations.
Mr. Walsh served on active duty in the US Army as an infantry Captain in 1970 and 1974.
Prior to joining the FBI, Mr. Walsh served as Assistant General Counsel to the N.Y.C. SCA Inspector General’s Office, and as a Special Assistant District Attorney in the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office, and earlier as an Assistant District Attorney in the Bronx District Attorney’s Office. He specialized in homicide and in forfeiture, organized crime, and money laundering cases.
Mr. Walsh created the first law enforcement video unit that videoed suspect statements, lineups, and crime scenes. He has lectured extensively all over the world on the use of video by law enforcement to enhance their cases.
Sean Walsh was a pioneer in the field of computer forensics having investigated many cases involving the forensic use of digital information as well as having lectured worldwide including the European computer crime conference at The Hague.
Mr. Walsh graduated from Fordham University earning a BS and JD degree. He completed the Nation Security Law program at University of Virginia Law School. He is a past International President of High-Tech Crime Investigation Association (HTCIA), a founding board member and officer of Law and Emergency Video Association (LEVA), a member of Acoustical Engineers Society (AES) standards committee, a member of IEEE, and the Association of the Bar of the City of NY where he has served on a number of committees including Communications and Computer Law committees. He currently serves on the Admissions Committee for the NY State Appellate Division, Second Department.
MSG(Ret.) Lawrence Badia
MSG (Ret.) Lawrence Badia is a native of Long Island, New York and entered the Army in November 1977. He served for 21 years as a military policeman and combat medic. MSG Badia served his last 12 years in the United States Army Recruiting Command, with assignments in New York, Ft. Rucker, Alabama and Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. This gave him a fantastic ability to relate to young men and women, and he is easily one of the camp favorites for both the
content and manner of his instruction. His attention to detail and exacting nature served him well in the regular Army and it has led him to national prominence in his transition to JROTC excellence. His awards an Army Instructor include the Commander’s Award for Public Service
3d award and the Outstanding Civilian Service Medal.
Since September 1998 immediately upon his retirement, MSG Badia started working at Francis Lewis High School in Queens, New York. MSG Badia took over the Armed Drill Team at that time and has taken a relatively unknown inner city drill unit with no real connection to the military closer and closer to the top at the National High School Drill Team Championships, finally winning the Demilitarized Arms Division Overall Championship in 2009 and several times since!
The Patriot Guard Armed drill team continued to improve and currently maintains the unquestioned status as one of the finest drill programs from any service in the Eastern United States. He pushes leadership and motivation and loves a challenge. More importantly, he instills these items in all of those who work with him. MSG Badia believes in hard work and total dedication, and his teams personify this philosophy every year win or lose. He loves imparting
this philosophy at the NDC and has done so now as one of the most valued instructors who has attended every camp since they began in 2007. "MSG" is without parallel in his love of the kids and his passion for competition drill. and in 2019, MSG Badia was elected for inclusion within the National Military Drill Hall of Fame - a well deserved honor for an amazing man!
Born and raised in New York City, Richard Weinberg grew up on Manhattan’s upper west side. His love of the New York Yankees is outweighed only by his love for Gail, his wife of 46 years, and their twin-daughters, Miriam and Julia.
In the summer of 1967, Richard enlisted in the U.S. Armed Forces and honorably served through 1969, including spending a year in combat based out of the Phu-Cat Air Base during the Vietnam War. During his year in combat Richard served as an MOS 13E20 Specialist 4 and earned service medals including VSM, VCN and NDSM.
Upon his return to the States, Richard attended Pace University where he earned his degree in accounting, followed by earning his Juris Doctor at SUNY Law School at Buffalo as well as his LLM,master's in law from New York University.
t was during his study at NYU that Richard met his future wife, Gail, who was originally from Detroit, Michigan, and was studying for her master's degree in Linguistics. Married since 1979, Richard and Gail shared a love of New York City and settled down in Flushing, Queens where they raised their twin-daughters in the shadow of Shea Stadium, the home of the NY Mets; Gail’s favorite baseball team.
Gail, attained a second master’s degree in Speech Pathology from St. John's University and went on to have a career with the NYC Board of Education, working to help children with speech delays.
Miriam, an RN, has served as a Critical Care Nurse at St. Francis Hospital in Roslyn, NY for the past sixteen years, and continues her father’s dedication to care for others.
Julia, practices medical malpractice defense as a Senior Litigation Paralegal and has carried on her father’s commitment to service as a volunteer Emergency Medical Technician in Southeast Queens for the past six years.
Richard continues to carry his deep sense of loyalty, duty and respect throughout his time in the service and beyond, instilling those values in both of his daughters, Julia and Miriam. Richard has practiced law as a sole practitioner for over forty years, while continuing to serve his community both as a Board
Member at his Synagogue in eastern Queens, and whole heartedly as a member and the Treasurer ofAmerican Legion Post 103, in Douglaston, Queens.
During the past 10 years of his time with the American Legion, Richard has been the driving force behind the push to have a formal monument erected at the sight of the 1940 Army Air Corps plane crash inFloral Park that killed 11 airmen and a civilian resident. Through their hard work Richard and his fellow
post members have managed to locate 40 relatives of the lost servicemembers, who will be in attendance at the June 17, 2023 dedication ceremony on Hillside Avenue, at the sight of the fatal crash.
Richard is always there for any fellow veteran in need and is deeply honored to be one of this year’s Parade Marshalls. He will be cheered on by his wife, daughters, son in law and especially by his granddaughter Hannah, who will be marching in this year’s parade, with her Boy Scout Troop #153G.