Oheka Castle's Rick Bellando, a living kidney donor, and Frank Korzekwinski, Chief Real Estate Lending Officer for Flushing Bank, announced as honorees
ROCKVILLE, Md. (June 6, 2019) — With more than 8,000 New Yorkers on the waiting list for a lifesaving kidney transplant, the American Kidney Fund (AKF) today announced it will put a spotlight on living kidney donation at its 14th Annual New York Golf Classic to be held Monday, August 5 at the iconic Nassau Country Club in Glen Cove. Participants will enjoy a full day of golf followed by a cocktail reception and dinner program where they will pay tribute to AKF's 2019 honorees, Rick Bellando, chief operating officer of Oheka Castle who donated a kidney over a decade ago, and Frank Korzekwinski, senior executive vice president of Flushing Bank and its chief real estate lending officer.
The annual New York Golf Classic raises funds to support AKF's mission of helping people fight kidney disease and live healthier lives through prevention and health education, clinical research, and charitable assistance that helps low-income U.S. dialysis patients and transplant patients access medical care. AKF is one of the nation's top-rated charities, spending 97 cents of every donated dollar on patients and programs.
Bellando in 2007 made headlines when he donated one of his kidneys to a friend he first met as a client at Oheka Castle four years earlier. That year, Bellando was one of only about 500 living kidney donors in New York State, which today has more than 8,000 people on the kidney transplant waiting list.
Korzekwinski is well known to New York developers, having grown Flushing Bank's real estate assets to over $5 billion during his tenure. Giving back to communities and organizations has always been a priority for Frank, who has had several friends struggle with the challenges of living with kidney disease.
The New York Golf Classic is presented by Flushing Bank, with additional sponsorship opportunities available to businesses and individuals.
"I became actively involved with the American Kidney Fund in 2012, shortly after a family member discovered that they were born with only one kidney. To better understand kidney disease and the risks that my family could face in the future, I reached out to the American Kidney Fund," said Maria Grasso, Flushing Bank senior executive vice president and chief operating officer, who co-chairs the New York Golf Classic and is a member of the AKF National Board of Trustees. "The American Kidney Fund is a wonderful organization that supports research and provides support to individuals and families affected by kidney disease," she said.
Registration for New York Golf Classic is open to the public at KidneyFund.org/nygolf. Options include the full day - including golf, dinner only, and supporting AKF by making a donation.
About the American Kidney Fund
The American Kidney Fund (AKF) fights kidney disease on all fronts as the nation’s leading kidney nonprofit. AKF works on behalf of the 37 million Americans living with kidney disease, and the millions more at risk, with an unmatched scope of programs that support people wherever they are in their fight against kidney disease—from prevention through transplant. With programs that address early detection, disease management, financial assistance, clinical research, innovation and advocacy, no kidney organization impacts more lives than AKF. One of the nation’s top-rated nonprofits, AKF invests 97 cents of every donated dollar in programs, earning the highest 4-Star rating from Charity Navigator for 20 years in a row as well as the Platinum Seal of Transparency from Candid, formerly GuideStar.