Michele Whalen has been named manager of the American Red Cross of Cortland County, Central New York Region Chief Executive Officer Rosie Taravella announced recently.
As manager, Whalen will develop and maintain community partnerships; recruit and supervise the volunteers who provide Red Cross services; and promote Red Cross services in Cortland County. Those services include preparing the public for disasters, responding to disasters, offering health and safety classes, hosting blood drives, and providing emergency communication and assistance for members of the Armed Forces and their families.
“My goal is to improve the visibility of the American Red Cross in Cortland County and help our community understand all of the lifesaving work that we do on a daily basis,” Whalen said. “I went to school at SUNY Cortland, I work here and I’ve raised a family here, and I look forward to making Cortland County a better and safer place to live by improving Red Cross services throughout the county.”
Whalen, of Truxton, will work daily at the American Red Cross of Cortland County’s new office at 50 Clinton Ave., Cortland. As part of a reorganization effort in the Central New York Region, full-time managers were hired for the American Red Cross of Tompkins County and now Cortland County.
“One of our goals as we restructured the region was to have a full-time manager devoted to service delivery, volunteer recruitment and fundraising in Cortland and Tompkins counties,” Taravella said. “We’re thrilled to have Michele in Cortland County, where she can continue to build on the many relationships she has developed throughout the area.”
Whalen was most recently the Coalition Coordinator for Cortland Area Communities That Care, a community-based partnership dedicated to helping youth in Cortland County make smart choices and adopt healthy behaviors. Whalen was in that position for 2 ½ years after previously working as an English teacher for 23 years in the McGraw Central and Tully Central school districts.
A native of Hammonton, N.J., Whalen received her Bachelor’s degree in Communications Management from Syracuse University and her Master’s degree in Reading Education from SUNY Cortland.
Whalen lives in Truxton with her husband, Jerry, and children Liam and Hanna. In her spare time, Whalen enjoys spending time with her family, writing, traveling, and listening to new music.