Monday, May 2, 2016

Red Cross Salutes Teachers: Lori-Ann Pizzarelli

It’s National Teacher Appreciation Week, a time when everyone should stop to thank our educators for all they do to build strong communities. The American Red Cross in Greater New York is proud to count many wonderful teachers among our dedicated volunteers. This week, we want to spotlight their amazing commitment, compassion and talent.

Lori-Ann Pizzarelli
Lori-Ann (left) with fellow Red Crosser Mike DeLeon.
Lori is an elementary school art teacher and a volunteer with the American Red Cross on Long Island. She has worked as a teacher for 11 years in the Syosset Central School District. At the Red Cross, Lori is the lead volunteer for the Long Island Home Fire Campaign, and also serves as a volunteer with the #GetAlarmedNYC program, as a presenter with The Pillowcase Project, as a Disaster Action Team (DAT) responder, and as a photographer at events. She is also certified to drive an Emergency Response Vehicle (ERV)!

Q: What inspired you to be a teacher?
A: I always had a passion for art, my undergraduate degree was interior design, but I felt something was missing. My best friend told me I would be great working with children, so, with a toddler at home, I went back for my Masters in Art Education. My life has changed so much as a teacher. It is so rewarding!

Q: If you wanted to share one thing about teaching with us what would it be?
A: Making a connection with a student and changing their perspective, makes them see things in a different way. I love it when a student says “look what I did!” :) Its making a difference that is so rewarding.

Q: What made you decide to volunteer with the Red Cross?
A: My brother (Joe Spaccarelli) quit his job after 27 years to work with Red Cross. I wanted to help him with his mission. I saw his passion and jumped right in!

Q: What characteristics do you think a teacher and a Red Cross volunteer have in common?
A: Both care so much about helping others and give selflessly. Both also take the time to learn their role and do it efficiently. I am taking classes with Red Cross all the time. You never stop learning. I enjoyed my experience with the Red Cross so much, I recruited three teachers at my school to become Red Cross volunteers, too! We always just want to help.

To learn how to become a volunteer with the American Red Cross visit www.redcross.org/gnyvolunteer


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