Kelly Elementary counselor joins women’s panel at Stony Brook University

Florence Chirichiello

WEST ORANGE, NJ — Kelly Elementary School counselor Florence Chirichiello had the unique opportunity to participate in an International Women’s Day panel to kick off Women’s History Month at her alma mater, Stony Brook University, on March 8.

“I was honored to be on an illustrious panel of women to kick off Women’s History Month and International Women’s Day by being a panelist and being able to empower the women who are current students at my alma mater at Stony Brook University,” Chrichiello said.

Chirichiello graduated from SBU, located in Stony Brook, N.Y., in 1997 with her Bachelor of Arts, having majored in multidisciplinary studies with a minor in women’s studies, and a Master of Social Work in 2000. A licensed social worker and certified school counselor, she has worked at Kelly Elementary School for the past 16 years. She is currently pursuing her certification as a licensed clinical social worker. 

“I was even more honored because it is also Social Work Month and this week is School Social Work Week,” Chirichiello said.

Chirichiello discussed her experiences at Stony Brook as vice president of the Center for Women’s Concerns, her political activism and forming a close network of women in college who are all now successful professionals in their field. She spoke of the importance of maintaining the network and empowering one another. She was able to reunite with many of the women through “SestraNow,” an international network of women supporting women, as well as the dean of the School of Social Welfare.

“My parting message was for women to continue to empower one another,” Chirichiello said. “Sometimes we don’t have to create big waves. Sometimes it’s the small ripples that come together to create one big wave. We need to continue to support and uplift one another so that women can continue to do great things.”

Chirichiello currently resides in New Jersey with her husband and two sons. She is a leader in her community where she serves as a Cub Scouts assistant den leader, coaches baseball and basketball, and is an active member of her church. As an entrepreneur she owns a children’s entertainment company where she entertains as a clown, DJ and costumed characters.

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