VP Trish: Thank You, John!

November 24, 2021
Tim and John – dressed alike, again!

As we all know, social gatherings have been quite limited this last year and a half. Well, last March, there was a retirement party scheduled for John Kuzmirek along with a dinner with the National Board of Directors (who were in for a Board of Directors in-person meeting). That March 2020 meeting was the last in-person meeting until last weekend. Funny, prior to this, all meetings were in-person.

Finally, after all this time, we were able to have a Board of Directors meeting here in Pittsburgh. It was decided to celebrate John while they were in town.

On Friday, November 19 (almost two years after John retired), we were able to thank John and celebrate all that he brought to the Polish Falcons of America. The Board, John’s family, staff and former staff went to Cefalo’s in Carnegie for our evening. What a nice surprise when we pulled up to the restaurant (which is housed in a former church), the Falcon logo was on the marquee! So cool!

John and Theron

We enjoyed a wonderful meal, then celebrated John. Tim, Trish, Ryan, Evie, Marianne and Chris shared a few fond memories. Theron Holladay, Sr. from Parkway Advisors came, shared and also gave John a gift of an autographed basketball (signed by Kyle Timmermann). Kuz used to harass Kyle that he was a much better basketball player than Kyle ever was.

John was presented with several gifts – a pizza Chris (and some staff) made of money along with gift cards. The Polish Falcons gave John a Hawaiian-themed Notre Dame shirt along with a moon glass cube (that changes color) with a plate with the inscription, “Thank you John Kuzmirek for your service. Polish Falcons. Czolem!”

Others also presented John with gifts.

John brought much to the Polish Falcons – his financial background, his experience as a business owner, his wit, humor and expertise. John made sure he had a good successor – Ryan! Thank you Paula for submitting John’s resume to the PFA!

We thank you John, we miss you and we love you! Czolem!

John and the Board

Another contribution I made to the evening were my cookies for dessert. A few asked for my recipe for Coconut Macaroons!

Coconut Macaroons

Combine: (mix by hand in a bowl with a large spoon, no need for a mixer)
• 1  14 oz. can Eagle Brand Sweetened Condensed Milk
• 1  14 oz. package coconut (5 1/3 cups flaked coconut)
• 1 ½ teaspoon almond extract

Fold in:
• Two large egg whites

Drop by teaspoonfuls onto your parchment paper lined cookie sheet.

• At 325 degrees
• 15-17 minutes until edges are lightly browned

Transfer immediately onto cooling rack, you may just move the paper onto the racks.

Have fun! Enjoy! Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours from me and mine!

Sweet Potato Crunch

Mix and Mash:
• 2 pounds of cooked sweet potato (I used canned)
• ¾ cup sugar
• ½ teaspoon cinnamon
• 1/8 teaspoon cardamom
• 4 tablespoons butter
• 1 egg

Place in 1 ½ quart casserole dish.

• 1 cup graham crackers (broken into small pieces)
• 4 tablespoons melted butter
• ½ cup chopped walnuts
• 1 cup brown sugar

Sprinkle onto sweet potato mixture.

Bake at 350 for 30 minutes.

My grandmother used to make this all the time; I thought it was her recipe. Nope, she found it in a cookbook. None the less, it is sooooo good!

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