Diving Back In
Madison officially opened our aquatics facility at the Thomas S. Murphy Clubhouse in Flatbush on Monday October 16th. With the support of Former Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz and Council member Dr. Mathieu Eugene for the 40th District of the New York City Council, a full-scale renovation of the swimming pool and adjoining facilities was celebrated with a ribbon cutting ceremony.
Madison’s new Executive Director, Tim McChristian says “We are elated to finally give the members at our Thomas S. Murphy Clubhouse the opportunity to dive back in to one of their favorite activities. With drowning ranked as the fifth leading cause of accident injury death in New York City and second nationally, we know how important it is to give our members the opportunity to learn basic swimming skills while being monitored by trained lifeguards and staff.”
The renovation includes a complete reconfiguration of the 4-lane, 20 foot by 60 foot pool, replacement of all tile and plaster finishes throughout the pool, a beautiful 100 foot long mosaic tile mural that features images of Clubhouse members taken by Clubhouse members, and new state-of-the-art lighting, piping, and handicap accessible features.
“I am honored to support the new aquatics facility at the Thomas S. Murphy Clubhouse,” Dr. Mathieu Eugene said. “I want to thank Madison Square Boys & Girls Club and Former Borough President Marty Markowitz for partnering with me on this important renovation. As a lifelong advocate for youth causes, I am committed to providing our young people with the resources they need to grow as individuals. This new facility will be an ideal setting to teach water safety and to engage our children in positive community activities.”
The Thomas S. Murphy Clubhouse is one of two of Madison Clubhouse locations that offer aquatics facilities and swimming lessons to its members.
Staff Spotlight: Liz Ortiz, Columbus Clubhouse
The dedication of our Clubhouse staff continues to be one of Madison’s most important assets. Because of Madison’s rich history and success, many former members come back to the Clubhouse, filled with motivation and pride, to serve the next generation of members. One such individual, Liz Ortiz, Director of the Arts at the Columbus Clubhouse, is celebrating 19 as a member of the Madison family.
As head of the arts program, Liz provides lessons in photography, music, and dance, to members ages 6-18 and has helped to mentor and train some of Madison’s most successful alumni. Under her leadership, the Columbus Clubhouse Dance Team performs at venues like the Apollo Theater, Madison Square Garden, and at Madison's annual black tie gala.
Liz’s work goes beyond the Clubhouse walls. A former member herself, she understands the power and importance of mentorship.
“I have helped to raise children from the age of 6 to 18. I give advice and help mold young people. My kids have gone on to attend college. Many are accomplished nurses, doctors, and business owners. What touches me the most is when they pursue dance as a profession. Former member Aaliyah is just one example. She was a member of the Clubhouse for ten years and danced in my program the entire time. After graduating high school, she pursued danced professionally and has performed with the likes of Alicia Keys, Drake, and others. Another example is Quevaughn, a troubled youth who joined the dance program and turned his life around. He found safety in the Clubhouse and a way to express himself through dance. He is now a college graduate who advocates for civil rights. I am so proud of all my kids.”
Staff members like Liz turn our Clubhouses into second homes and our members into success stories. Thank you to Liz and the Madison staff for their continued dedication to our kids!
Mark Your Calendars!
Upcoming Special Events
An Autumn Affair hosted by the Madison Council: October 24th, 2017
Christmas Tree Ball: December 1st, 2017
2018 Salute to Style Luncheon: April 18, 2018
2018 Youth of the Year Dinner: May 23rd, 2018