Dr. Jon Feingold of Long Beach received the 2012 MassMutual Disability Leadership Award for his work in the special needs community.
On May 15, Jon Feingold, Ph.D., stood at home plate before a Mets game at Citi Field to receive the MassMutual Disability Leadership Award. The award is given to individuals who exemplify leadership and excellence in their work for the special needs community. Dr. Feingold, who serves as executive director of The Hagedorn Little Village School’s Jack Joel Center for Special Children in Seaford, was “very honored and flattered” about the recognition, but in his eyes, the award is shared by each of his colleagues. “I’m really grateful because I think it’s recognition for what we do at Little Village,” he says.
Little Village School’s Jack Joel Center for Special Children is a nonprofit founded in 1969 by Dr. Feingold’s mother, Barbara Feingold, Ph.D., along with Caryl Bank, Ph.D. Taking after his mother, Dr. Jon Feingold earned a Ph.D. in clinical and school psychology from Hofstra University. As a licensed psychologist and marriage and family therapist and a certified school psychologist, he has worked at a residential therapeutic school for teenage girls, a Long Island counseling center, and in inpatient psychiatric care for teens. In 1995, he joined the staff at Little Village, and he maintains a private clinical practice in Merrick.
The publicly funded Little Village School is a certified preschool and elementary school that serves about 265 students a day and provides more than 400 diagnostic evaluations per year for families in the community. The school also provides off-site care (such as day care and physical, occupational, and speech therapy) to more than 1,000 families annually. Dr. Feingold, who lives in Long Beach, also runs support groups for fathers.
The most rewarding aspect of his job at Little Village, Dr. Feingold says, is watching students’ progress. “And as a close second,” he adds: “Watching families who felt very isolated or devastated by a diagnosis...coming to a place where they feel accepted.”