This year, Homestead’s City Councilwoman Judy Waldman has been chosen to receive the 2013 John F. Cosgrove “Founders” Award. John F. Cosgrove was the former Representative and Mayor of Cutler Bay as well as the Founder of Dade Days – a celebration of Miami Dade County’s diverse cultural community. He died in 2006 and this award was started in 2007 in his memory. It was begun as a way to recognize individuals who have had a grand impact on the Miami Dade County community – similar to Mr. Cosgrove himself.
“It is an honor to have been selected for this award. John was a paragon in our state and a public servant whose work I admired and supported,” said Councilwoman Judy Waldman. “He was a role model and one of my inspirations as I go to work every day for my community. My goal has always been to better the quality of life of our residents through the preservation and creation of green areas as well as the development of events that bring the community together. It makes me extremely proud and humbled that my efforts are recognized through this prestigious award.”
City of Homestead Councilwoman Judy Waldman, who has been a member of the Homestead City Council since November of 2001, has made various contributions to her community. Among her contributions is the creation and adoption of the first Parks Master’s Plan in the City of Homestead, which included improvements to all of the community parks. Councilwoman Waldman also envisioned and brought forward the development of the Biscayne-Everglades Greenway, a multipurpose park and trail system that connects Biscayne National Park to Everglades National Park.
Councilwoman Waldman is a champion of raising awareness and an avid fundraiser for breast cancer prevention, detection, and treatment. She has participated in countless events to raise funds for the Susan G. Komen Foundation as well as the American Cancer Society since 1986, and has served as chair and lead organizer of the Homestead Relay for Life for over ten years. She and her husband, Dr. Mervin Waldman, founded the Little Angels Foundation in 1999, a non-profit organization that supports children with developmental, learning, and emotional problems. She has also been an avid supporter and led the effort to raise funds for Start Off Smart, (SOS). SOS has been in operation for 21 years and serves victims of violence such as child abuse, domestic violence, human trafficking and elderly abuse.
She is a charter member of the Homestead Hospital Pineapple Gala Committee, which helps raise funds for the pediatric ward. She has also conducted various relief drives, most recently one to help the victims of Hurricane Sandy. Councilwoman Waldman is not only dedicated to help her community but to acknowledge those who serve as well. She founded the Kindness Awards during Hurricane Andrew’s 10th Anniversary as a way to recognize individuals who perform acts of kindness in times of need.
Councilwoman Waldman was chosen for the 2013 John F. Cosgrove “Founders” Award not only for her outstanding involvement in her community, but also for her dedication to making a difference in the lives of others. “It was my great honor to have known John Cosgrove. Not only did I serve as a colleague, but he was also my friend. It is an honor and pleasure to have received this award,” said Councilwoman Waldman.