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Catholic Lawyers Guild marks end of the year with annual awards dinner

May 22, 2015 By Rob Abruzzese Brooklyn Daily Eagle
From left: Frank A. Composto, Hon. Matthew D’Emic, Hon. Sandra L. Sgroi, Joseph Sgroi, Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams, Hon. Mark Partnow, Hon. Frank Seddio, Joseph Rosato and Greg Cerchione. Eagle photos by Rob Abruzzese
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The Catholic Lawyers Guild Diocese of Brooklyn, Kings County Chapter, said goodbye to its president, inducted new officers and honored six others during its 41st annual awards dinner at Gargiulo’s in Coney Island Thursday night.

“It’s been a truly wonderful year with great events and charity work,” President Joseph Rosato said. “Now we get a chance to reflect on it and recognize some truly special honorees that have meant a lot to the Catholic Lawyers Guild. Each one has distinguished themselves in the service of others. That’s what’s really important and what this night is about.”

This year’s honorees included Hon. Frank R. Seddio, who received the St. Thomas More Award; Hon. Sandra L. Sgroi, recipient of the President’s Award; Hon. Matthew J. D’Emic, recipient of the Distinguished Judiciary Award; Hon. Mark I. Partnow, who received the Ecumenical Award; Gregory T. Cerchione, recipient of the Hon. William T. Bellard Award; and Frank A. Composto, who received special recognition.

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“I can’t tell you how much it means to me to see all of us so active with the Catholic Lawyers Guild, and to think that I might have done something to assist you in this is humbling,” Composto said when he received his award. “I never really thought that I was that much a motivating factor as (President Joe Rosato) has told us all tonight.”

“By bestowing this Ecumenical Award each year, the Catholic Lawyers Guild recognizes that Jews and Christians have common roots and a spiritual bond,” Partnow said. “Could you imagine if the thousands of organizations around the globe followed the Catholic Lawyers Guild by honoring persons of other faiths, what a better world this would be?”

“Being a Catholic is not such an easy thing today,” Seddio said. “Practicing your faith to a degree that you’d like to do so is more often ridiculed than honored. It’s more often looked at with some distain rather than a mark of true integrity. Being a Catholic and being a lawyer is its own special thing.”

At the end of the evening, Cerchione officially marked the end of Rosato’s term as president when he presented him with the past president’s medallion. Hon. Lizette Colon was then officially sworn in as the new president by Hon. Kenneth P. Sherman. Sherman also swore in new officers Vice President Domenic Famulari, Secretary Maria Aragona and Cerchione as treasurer.

“To all the past presidents and to all the honorees: I’m humbled by the fact that you show such selflessness and compassion in everything you do,” Colon said after being sworn in. “I hope to be able to fill the large shoes that came before me including Sara Gozo, my female mentor, Joe Rosato, and Mr. Catholic Lawyers Guild himself, Gregory T. Cerchione.”

Go to for more photos from this event.

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