MINERVA - Minerva's 2009 Citizen of the Year is someone who has become involved in her community in a big way in her eight years of living in the town full-time. In her quiet, out-of-the-spotlight way, she has provided the Town of Minerva with a volunteer spirit that serves as a model for community service. With her husband Tom, three cats, and one dog, Sharon Aleksejczyk contributes greatly at a time when volunteerism has really become a necessity for communities to remain healthy and thrive.
When asked how she felt about being named Citizen of the Year, Aleksejczyk said that she was shocked "..... and very surprised - it's an honor that the community voted me in. " She is very happy about living in Minerva: "We live in a place where people go for vacation. This community is great".
Aleksejczyk grew up in Rotterdam, NY, near Schenectady, graduating from Mohonasen High School. She worked for Wedekind Pontiac, Inc. in Schenectady for 27 years, serving as the Parts Manager for the last 12 of these years. She and her husband Tom - they've been married for 22 years - began coming up to a camp in Minerva in 1992. They enjoyed the area so much they decided to live here, buying their home in 1996. They moved up permanently in 2001. Aleksejczyk began her volunteering career in 2002, joining the Minerva Service Organization when it was looking around for help putting up new playground equipment at Donnelly Beach on Minerva Lake.
For the past several years, Aleksejczyk has been vice president of the Adirondack Tri County Nursing Home Auxillary, having become a member in 2002. She also volunteers at the nursing home and belongs to the nursing home's garden club. She's an active participant in the Minerva Emergency Preparedness Committee and is a former Red Cross Volunteer for the Adirondack-Saratoga Chapter. As an active Red Cross volunteer, she worked at shelters during emergency situations such as the power outage in North Creek several years ago, the Mineville flooding event, and the collapse of the Hadley Dam. She also helps out with gleaning at Minerva's Food Bank, picks up trash along Minerva's highways and byways, and has been an Election inspector for Essex County and Minerva Central school.