Slate of Nominees

President: Katherine Adler

First Vice President: David Ichell

Second Vice President: Jay Unkeless

Secretary: Susan Fawcett

Treasurer: Mary Bass

Directors: Richard Babinecz, Mitchell Cohen, Joseph Friedman, Ira Kawaller, Louise (Lou) Keating, Cel Maldonado, Harris Nagler, Ray Phillip

Biographical Sketches of Nominees

Katherine Adler(President)

My husband Paul and I have been coming to the Lake for almost 30 years.  I was elected to the Board of Directors in 2005 and was Treasurer from 2007 to 2011. Over those years I have served on various committees of the Board. My son David and I designed and edited the Lake News for approximately 5 years (before its present incarnation).  My father, Leonard Kamsky, was active on the Board, and was President for two terms.   So, we have a family tradition of service to the community.

I have spent many years as a senior executive in a variety of business settings, most recently as a Vice President at Bergdorf Goodman and as a Director at The Museum of Natural History.  My professional experience, coupled with my long-term knowledge about the lake and the environmental concerns that we as neighbors share, gives me both an understanding of the many issues that we have to deal with and the problem-solving tools to help address those issues effectively. I look forward to continuing to serve our community.

David Ichell (First Vice President)

I own with my wife Jan a small ( but wonderful  for us) Log Cabin home at 302 Old Forge Drive and been a member of the Lake Sagamore Association since May 2000. I have previously served as a member of the Lake Committee, Website committee, (chair), a director and for the past four years have served as Vice President of the Association. I am concerned about the quality  of our lake for all residents and with keeping a good sense of community and privacy for all our members. Over the years, I have assisted with various efforts to remove weeds from the Lake.  I am a lawyer at Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP in New York, where Jan and I reside during the week most weeks.

Jay Unkeless(Second Vice President)

My wife, Elaine, and I have been residents of Lake Sagamore for 15 years, and I have served on the Lake Committee for much of that time. The lake and the residents of the community have become focal points of our lives. I love to scull early in the morning, and have made many good friends with whom I play music. I have always been interested in freshwater biology and use my microscope to examine the rotifers, copepods, and algae that constitute the bottom of the food chain. I take particular pleasure in watching the birds -- the herons, kingfishers, and transient ducks such as buffleheads and mergansers -- that snack on the abundant tadpoles and fry found in the lake. The health and water quality of the lake is exemplary and is our most important asset.  As second vice president I will do my best to safeguard the lake and the dam now and in the future. Professionally, I was an Immunologist at Rockefeller University and then at Mount Sinai School of Medicine.

Susan Fawcett(Secretary)

My husband Dick Donovan and I bought our first home on Lake Sagamore in 1987. We remain smitten by the beauty of the lake and by the wonderful people in this community. In 1999, we moved to our present paradise, a small Usonian home surrounded by woods and water at the end of Loggers Court. I’ve just completed my first term as Secretary of the Lake Association. Over the years, I have served as editor of the Sentinel, co-chair of the Lake Committee, and activist against threats to the lake, most notably the sludge processing plant that came chillingly close to being built near here. My concerns are preserving the health and integrity of Sagamore’s ecosystem and maintaining the character of our community. Dick and I maintain an apartment in the City and spend winters in Miami, Florida; I’ll arrange for the winter Board meeting minutes to be taken by a colleague on the Board. Professionally, I am the author of college composition textbooks, magazine articles, and poetry.

Mary Bass(Treasurer)

Many of you know me from my long years at Lake Sagamore –since 1991.   I am a past board member, Secretary and President of the Association, and have hugely enjoyed  working with the LSCA  during that time.   I am a lawyer and  labor arbitrator in New York City in my spare time!

I look forward to the opportunity to rejoin the Board as Treasurer of the Association.

Richard Babinecz(Director)

My wife Joanie & I  arrived at the Lake in 1978.  We live at  334 Old Forge Drive and our home is named Blackacre.  I have served on the Board in a variety of capacities over most of my years at the Lake and have provided legal advice on many of the important legal issues our community has faced.  Among other things, on 3 occasions I convinced the Kent and Putnam Valley Assessors to reduce the property tax on our Lake bottom and Parklands to nominal value.  This followed an earlier  court challenge where we were successful in opposing a fair market value assessment.  Other issues involved the location near us of a dump, a recycling center, liability insurance, dues payments, DEP watershed property acquisitions, various residential development proposals, wetland and parkland issues.  We raised two wonderful children at the Lake, Steve & Kim, who  as young adults still enjoy weekends and holidays at Blackacre.  I am an avid fisherman and totally committed to environmental excellence and the health of our lake.   I am a practicing attorney and until recently represented Con Edison for 25 years as in-house counsel supervising litigation. Effective August 1st I will leave Con Ed and start a private law practice.  I am happy to serve a second term of office as Director.

Mitchell Cohen (Director)

Bob, Nathan, and I have owned a home on the lake for 12 years – since Nathan was an infant.  We own the house and tree house closest to the dam.  I have previously served on the Board where I developed, and I currently volunteer to maintain it. I collaborate with Elaine Unkeless to update the Directory.  Bob, my partner for 25 years, designed our beautiful Lake Sagamore Handbook, and, for several years, he laid out the Sagamore Sentinel.  I value most our friends and neighbors nestled into the peaceful and natural beauty of the lake.  Through the website and board communications I hope to provide a forum where residents can share information about how best to maintain our lake and enjoy the many resources in our area.  Over the next several years we will face increases in dam maintenance expenses, but, without sacrificing the quality of our lake, I will work with the Board to keep our dues reasonable.   Professionally, I am a dad who consults on research design and the utilization of information to create strategies promoting health care and education.

Joseph Friedman (Director)

I am the father of boy girl twins Adam and Dina who have blessed us with five grand children. Lori and I run a five store boutique in Westchester and Connecticut.   Lori is an avid Scrabble player and I love to fish with my grand kids, which is reason enough to be passionate about the lake.

Ira Kawaller(Director)

I am a fatherof threeand have been an owner at Sagamore for 25 years.  I served as Past Secretary of the Board under two administrations andas a  general board member for at least three others (if memory serves).  I am an Avid squash player, mediocre tennis player, lousy golfer, but always looking for people to play with.  I love anything to do with water – especially at Sagamore.  I am happy at work as an economist.

Louise (Lou) Keating(Director): I'm a former actress and interior designer who grew up in Montreal, spent twenty years in Los Angeles and now calls New York, home. My husband, Roger, our two kids and I enjoy the Upper West Side Monday through Friday but can't wait for the weekend and the summer because it means that we'll be at Lake Sagamore. Ours is the Swiss style home, known around the lake as, "The Triegers old house".

Every year for my birthday, Roger and the kids plant my favorite tree, a Japanese Maple, in the yard. We now have three of them and it is my hope that some day our house will either be referred to as, "...the one with all the Japanese Maples" or "The Keatings house". We don't mind earning it.

I'm very happy to be of service to the lake community and give back to a place that gives us so much.

Cel Maldonado(Director)

I am currently the global Raw Sugar Operations Manager at American Sugar Refining in Yonkers (makers of Domino Sugar) for 36 years. I have been a member of the Association since the summer of 2002. As a full time resident of the Lake, I have a primary concern and interest in all associative issues that affect the Lake and its residents. After having previously lived with my family in Queens, Long Island, and Maryland, I am now very content in my solo settled senior placement at the Lake. I have served a term in office as Director and would look forward to serving a second term.

Harris Nagler(Director)

My wife, Freema, and I have spent summer, fall, winter and spring weekends on Lake Sagamore with our  two daughters for more than 25 years.  We choose Lake Sagamore for its beauty,  serenity and core values.  It is scenic but there was no scene!  That being said we have met some of our dearest friends on the lake.

I am the  President of Beth Israel Medical Center, Chairman of the Sol and Margaret Berger Department of Urology of the Beth Israel Medical Center and Professor of Urology at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University.

Freema is an attorney. We have raised our two daughters, Arielle and Gabrielle on Lake Sagamore. Arielle is dermatology resident. Gabrielle attends law school and is getting a masters in criminology. 

Now that our children are in a different phase of life we have been spending more time at the lake. I would like the opportunity to serve the community so that the girls will always have a wonderful pristine place to return with their families.

Ray Phillips.(Director)

An all-year resident at 79 Old Forge Drive, I have lived by Lake Sagamore since 2004.  The lake and the woodland have never-ending appeal through all the seasons as a hiker and canoe enthusiast.  I feel privileged to live where the larger community – our Lake Association - takes stewardship of these treasures very seriously.  My experiences in public concerns over the years include service on several community and parklands boards.  I am a physician (internal medicine) at Westchester Medical Center and historical novelist.