Rebuilding Together Long Island was founded in 1992 by a small group of volunteers, eager to help needy homeowners who were having difficulty maintaining their homes. Sol Goldstein, Joe Botkin, Ed Mehring, Bill Weiss and Saul Ferdman became acquainted while working on a Habitat for Humanity house in Suffolk County. Frustrated by the fact that their efforts were reaching only one family at a time and by the absence of any services in Nassau County, Sol searched out a national group called Christmas in April. A charter from the National Headquarters was granted to Christmas In April, Long Island, Inc.
While our stated goal was to maintain homeowners in warmth, safety and independence, we soon recognized that the model followed by National was not sufficient for us. Their pattern involved a major effort one weekend in April. Long Island had far too many needy homeowners who could ill afford to wait a year for help. The result . . . we undertook year-round service, a pattern that has since been widely copied by many other chapters.
Eventually, the need for a more accurate descriptive name resulted in the adoption by all chapters of the name Rebuilding Together.
With Sol Goldstein as President and Joe Botkin as Vice President, a dramatic expansion began to take place. As applications for assistance increased, the need for volunteers grew as did the need for funding. The areas being served continued to expand. Today, our 250 volunteers, are the heart and soul of our organization, skilled craftsmen, unskilled workers, office personnel, and kind-hearted home visitors who make the initial contact with those applying for help.
Our vision today remains strong…. safe homes and communities for everyone.
Board of Directors
Barbara Nilsen, President; Joe Botkin, Senior Vice President; Marian Goldstein, Vice President; Bob Wohlafka, Treasurer
Dennis Franco, Secretary; Stella Hendrickson, Director; Richard Schneider, Director; Laurence Silverman, Director
Natalie Lapp, Director; Steven Wiener, Director; Steven Walker, Director
In Loving Memory
Omy Maiers, Director Emeritus, passed away in August 2016. Prior to accepting the newly formed position of Director Emeritus, Omy served on the Board of Directors for many years. For twenty years, Omy committed his time, his talent and his spirit to helping his neighbors across the Island. A man of great compassion for others, his family and friends will miss his warmth, his wit and his wisdom.
Sol Goldstein, co-founder of Rebuilding Together Long Island, passed away in 2015 after a long and courageous battle.
For 23 years, Rebuilding Together Long Island, knew only one President, Sol Goldstein. He has guided us from a modest group of volunteers to our present status as one of the largest volunteer home repair organizations on Long Island. His vision and leadership have made it possible for thousands of families to remain in their homes in warmth, safety and independence.
His shining example will serve as an inspiration to our volunteers as we continue the mission of helping the less fortunate families of Long island.
ADDITIONAL RESOURCES AND DOCUMENTS