Suffolk Legislator Tom Donnelly and the entire Legislature recently recognized Deer Park resident Gina Lieneck as the 2019 Suffolk County Woman of Distinction at a General Meeting of the Legislature on Tuesday, March 26, 2019. Gina was selected as the 2019 Legislative District 17 honoree before being chosen as the county-wide “Woman of Distinction” by the Suffolk County Women's Advisory Commission.
In 2005, Ms. Lieneck suffered an unthinkable tragedy while boating on the Great South Bay which resulted in the death of one of her daughters, Brianna, and serious injuries to her and her entire family. Gina turned tragedy into action and has been advocating and lobbying New York State for a change to boating laws. As a result of her efforts, “Brianna’s Law,” sponsored by NYS Assemblywoman Kimberly Jean-Pierre (D-Babylon) and NYS Senator John E. Brooks (D-Seaford), and with close to 100 co-sponsors, is currently close to passage.
In addition to her advocacy, Ms. Lieneck is very active in the Deer Park community where she created a very successful girls softball facility, Breezy's Field of Dreams in memory of her daughter, helped raise more than $100,000 to assist these girls in attending tournaments to be recruited for athletic commitments and scholarships to colleges, is currently president of the Deer Park Community Association, serves as a Town of Babylon Beautification Ambassador and is working on the Deer Park Revitalization project.
“It is a privilege to recognize Gina Lieneck, whom I am proud to call a friend, before the entire Legislature,” Legislator Donnelly said. “Gina is most deserving of this honor, and I thank her for all that she does in our community. I would also like to thank the Women's Advisory Commission for their hard work in support of all of the women of Suffolk County.”
The Suffolk County Woman of Distinction Award was established in 2002 to give each County Legislator the opportunity to honor one constituent who resides in his or her legislative district and has demonstrated leadership, involvement and commitment to community outside of her job responsibilities. From that group of candidates, the Suffolk County Women's Advisory Commission selects a single county-wide "Woman of Distinction."
“All of the Legislators selected outstanding women, many of them extraordinary, as their local Women of Distinction. However, Gina Lieneck, Legislator Donnelly’s nomination, stood out as someone we felt truly embodies the spirit of this honor,” said Gina Coletti, Chair of the Suffolk County Women’s Advisory Commission and a former Suffolk County Woman of Distinction herself. “We are so grateful for all the work that Gina has done and continues to do and the example she sets as a role model. Not only has she turned a tragedy into a triumph, she has a unique spirit and drive to find the positive, no matter the situation. We are thrilled to recognize Gina Lieneck as the Suffolk County 2019 Woman of Distinction.”
Ms. Lieneck, a near-lifelong Deer Park community member who graduated from Deer Park High School, still resides there with her husband, Frank, and daughter, Danyelle.