Greater Westfield Chamber of Commerce

Westfield State Honors Community Leaders for Public Service

Westfield State University will honor both Sheridan “Bing” Carey and Lucille Deans Gibbs with the Horace Mann Award for Public Service on Thursday, April 21st in the Loughman Living Room in Scanlon Hall. This ceremony brings together Westfield State leadership including President Ramon S. Torrecilha and Michael Knapik, executive director of Advancement, Alumni, and University Relations, State Representative John Velis, and members of the community.

The featured speaker is The Honorable Eduardo Robreno, member of the Westfield State University Class of 1967. Robreno is the first Cuban-American and first Hispanic in Pennsylvania to be appointed a federal judge. He currently serves as a Senior United States District Judge for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania. Robreno presided over MDL-875 personal injury asbestos litigation, the largest multi-district litigation in the US federal courts.


Mr. Carey is a member of the Westfield State University Class of 1965. Following his graduation, he spent two years in the Navy and earned his M.S. in labor studies from UMass Amherst. He worked for the Massachusetts Teachers Association as a lobbyist for 15 years and then joined Trinity Investment Management of Boston. He is also a member of the Westfield State Foundation Board of Directors. Carey has also endowed the Carey Family Scholarship for undergraduates in the Westfield State Department of Mathematics and, together with his wife Eileen, donated a piano to the university’s music department.

Ms. Gibbs earned her B.S. in education from Westfield State and her master’s and a Certificate of Advanced Graduate Study from Springfield College. Dedicated to the education field, she taught in the Boston Public Schools, at several Springfield elementary schools, and served as interim administrator of a federal program that encouraged elementary students to discuss racial, ethnic, and social differences. She then worked at Springfield Technical Community College as an academic guidance counselor.  Gibbs served as a member of the Westfield State University Board of Trustees, as President of the Westfield State Alumni Association, and as a corporator for the Westfield State Foundation. She also held leadership positions for the Urban League Guild, the League of Women Voters, and the Springfield Education Association among others. She is being honored posthumously and her award will be accepted by her daughter Stephanie Gibbs.

The Horace Mann Award for Public Service recognizes individuals who embody the spirit of Horace Mann, a public servant, social reformer and the founder of Westfield State University.  Considered by many to be “the Father of American Education,” Mann believed in the power of education to improve society and in the value of community service to change lives.

Each recipient’s life service reflects the rich legacy of Horace Mann and the community service traditions of Westfield State University.

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