Karen Thomas named Warwick's “Queen for a Day”

| 15 Feb 2012 | 09:05

WARWICK — On Thursday evening, Aug. 25, Warwick Mayor Michael Newhard continued a longtime tradition when he introduced this year’s “Queen for a Day,” Karen Thomas, the director of he Warwick Valley Community Center, during the annual celebration of Ladies Night Out. It was the 11th anniversary of this special event. Newhard read the winning nomination letter submitted by Lisa Pearce and added that this recognition was long overdue for someone who had contributed so much to the community. For the past ten years “Queen for a Day” has been an opportunity for a special lady to be recognized by her family or friends for her generous spirit, caring heart and selfless nature. The winner also receives a valuable assortment of gift certificates and merchandise from Warwick business owners. This year, thanks to extraordinary efforts of businesswoman Barbara Laurence, participating merchants contributed over $2,000 in gifts and services that were presented to the queen. Later, Newhard read the impressive list of approximately 70 contributors. Nomination applications are made available each year at downtown shops and anyone who believes he or she knows a person who deserves the crown is invited to participate. Members of the Warwick Merchants’ Guild then review the nominations and select the winner at a special meeting before “Ladies Night Out.” Many Warwick residents are aware that Thomas has served as executive director of the Warwick Valley Community Center for more than 15 years. In her nomination letter, Pearce stated that through Thomas’ leadership, the Small Fry Pre-school housed there had nurtured countless young children and that she also worked tirelessly to help teenagers. “Working with the Orange County Youth Bureau, the Alcoholism and Drug Awareness Council and Department of Justice grants,” wrote Pearce, “Karen has provided for our teens in after school programs, evening events and even created Warwick’s only Teen Center thus strengthening our ability as parents to succeed in launching great kids.”