Chamber fixture Marcia Finkelstein passes
With great sadness and fond remembrance, the Plainview-Old Bethpage Chamber of Commerce recently announced the untimely passing of Marcia Finkelstein, who suffered a severe brain hemorrhage on Mother’s Day and died on May 22 surrounded by her loving family.
An active member for more than a decade, Finkelstein enthusiastically served on the chamber board of directors for many years. Among her myriad contributions, she led the chamber scholarship committee and participated in most chamber activities, including its annual Fall Festival, holiday parties and charity support membership outreach.
Finkelstein eagerly promoted the chamber to her many colleagues and to the community, according to chamber president Elan Wurtzel, who said her vibrant spirit and tireless helping hand will be greatly missed.
“Chief among her many qualities was Marcia’s upbeat and positive attitude, her kindness to others and willingness to always lend a hand,” said Wurtzel. “Marcia was always ready with a smile and laugh, and exuded warmth and charm. Marcia epitomized the wonderful qualities of a business woman who cared about her clients and her community and was passionate about both her work and family. She will be sorely missed by all who knew her.”
A Plainview resident for more than 40 years, Finkelstein was a fixture in the local real estate business since 1977; first as a real estate broker and then for 22 years as the real estate broker/owner of Robin Realty in Plainview, during which time she was able to serve the community in the capacity of a small business owner. For the past several years, she has been a broker associate of Lynda Baker Realty.
Previously, Finkelstein was a New York City elementary school teacher and held a license as a teacher for the deaf and hard of hearing. She received her bachelor of arts degree from Queens College and her master’s in education from Hunter College.
Over the course of her long career, Finkelstein was involved in many business organizations and earned several professional certificates. She also served her community through the Plainview Jewish Center. But her most precious time spent was with her family: Her husband Harold, a tax attorney and Hofstra University professor; their three married children and six grandchildren, with whom she enjoyed cooking, reading, gardening and playing sports.
“Dependable, intelligent, funny, energetic; these are some of the adjectives that begin to describe Marcia. I had the pleasure of getting to know her these past three years as the chamber’s assistant. She was a bright light that will forever shine in our memories.”
—Barbara Mars, Chamber Assistant
“Marcia’s friendship will always be a cherished gift she gave me. She was a warm and intelligent woman. She was a busy wife, mother, grandmother and business woman who never hesitated to become involved in community events. If Plainview had a community ambassador, it would have been Marcia. May she rest in peace and her family find comfort in all the lives she touched upon.”
—Maryanne Plummer, Membership Secretary and Board Member
“Marcia gave so much of her time to the chamber. She was the unofficial raffle prize queen. For our holiday party and annual Fall Festival, there was always an impressive variety of generous raffle prizes collected because of her efforts. She was a pleasure to work with and learn from.”
—Bryan Trugman, Second Vice President and Board Member
“Marcia Finkelstein was a one of kind. Truly generous, caring and a staple of our community. Always the first to raise her hand and volunteer for the many chamber activities for which she was involved. Marcia will be sorely missed by all who knew her.”
—Andrew Lamkin, First Vice President and Board Member
“‘Gramma…your phone is ringing!’ With that adorable ringtone, everyone in hearing distance at Plainview-Old Bethpage Chamber of Commerce meetings always knew Marcia Finkelstein was receiving a phone call and that’s all any of us needed to really know Marcia: Passionately active in everything, but nothing ever more important than family. We will miss her friendship, her energy, her positive outlook and her enormous contributions to this community.”
—Larry Weiss, Board Member
“I will always remember Marcia as an upbeat, positive person, ready with a smile and laugh. She was passionate about her real estate work and passionate about her family. She was dedicated to her clients and to her Plainview-Old Bethpage Community. As a long-time chamber member and board of director, she was always ready to lend a hand and help. She often would go around town asking business owners to contribute gifts that we could raffle off for charity or the Fall Festival. She was tireless—she would always find a great prize—her favorites were large TVs and carpets. One of my favorite memories of Marcia occurred this past February at our Membership Dinner where we were raffling off prizes and announcing winners. As usual, Marcia was in the middle of the hubbub, getting prizes ready to give to the winners. Our emcee for the night was announcing the winner of the prized mah jong table cover and a case of Keurig K-cups. Our emcee was a comedienne and had a good laugh with this particular prize because it was a quintessential Long Island-type of prize. Who wouldn’t want to win this? The ticket was drawn, the number announced and after a few seconds of silence, a great laugh emerged—who won? Marcia! She was so excited to win and bubbled with excitement—no matter that she didn’t play Mah Jong! Marcia was always a pleasure to be with and she will be missed.”
—Elan Wurtzel, President and Board Member