Lakeland 2021 Valedictorian

Lakeland 2021 Valedictorian

Lakeland High School 2021 Valedictorian, Tom Thumb Graduate of 2008

“At Tom Thumb, we are all proud of Sayani Aggarwal for her achievements and the person she has become. It’s with warm affection I look back at the past. It seems almost like yesterday when Sayani was a little kid with a big smile in her cap and gown at her Tom Thumb Graduation in 2008. Now, she is a young woman with a wonderful future ahead.  Sayani is part of the Next Great Generation of Americans that will change this world.”, Nancy Brophy

image of press artical of tom thumb class of 2008 student, Sayani Aggarwal

GRADUATION SECTION — Special Supplement to Yorktown News – July 8, 2021

GRADUATION SECTION — Special Supplement to Yorktown News – July 8, 2021


Lakeland High School


Valedictorian – Sayani Aggarwal


By Nick Trujillo Staff Writer


Under the scorching sun at Dutchess Stadium, Lakeland’s Sayani Aggarwal addressed her classmates, faculty, and parents, reflecting on the past four years and how the unique end to her high school career allowed her class to appreciate aspects of her school in ways they would not have.

“We had no choice but to cherish the moments we had in high school as we sat in our homes for days on end,” said the valedictorian. ‘As we figured out how to express emotions behind a mask, we cherished the times when we could clearly see a classmate’s smile across a room.”

When COVID-19 regulations started to lift, and Lakeland students could begin – to meet in person again, Aggarwal said that this added to the impact those moments would make on their high school memories.

“When we were given opportunities to gain back some sense of normalcy, we cherished these moments even more because we knew that these were the final chances we had to make lasting memories, even if they were not the memories that we planned to make as freshmen,” said the National Honor Society member.

Aggarwal thanked many people who have supported her throughout her life and through an unprecedented time in her life. She thanked her friends for bringing out the best in her on her darkest days. She thanked her teachers for their influence and guidance. She thanked the parents of the volunteer group, “Class of 2021 Let’s Get it Done!” for their work in celebrating Lakeland’s seniors. She thanked and expressed her gratitude to her parents for their unconditional love and support.

“We are walking away with a shared experience, an experience that will continue to connect us as we journey through the various chapters of our lives,” said Aggarwal. Our shared experience, our memories, will be the source behind each word written in the history of these times, and through those memories, we will be immortalized.”

Aggarwal had a weighted GPA of 101.73 and never earned less than an “A” in any subject, including in her lauded science research work. She is interested in pursuing the area of chemistry

How Many are Tom Thumb Graduates?

How Many are Tom Thumb Graduates?

The answer is 13. Nancy Brophy and the Bride, Jessica Greene Stoke, are not Tom Thumb Graduates. All the others that appear in the larger picture below are Tom Thumbers that have graduated from 1990 through 1999.

tom thumbers at a wedding

From left to right: Raymond Stokes, Jon Wagner, Stefanes Marcopoulous, John Hagens, Christopher Hagens, Bridget Stokes, Alex DiMarco, Nicole DiMarco, Lucky McFadden, and Timothy Stokes. From the Bride, clockwise: Jessica Greene Stokes, Nancy Brophy, Lindsey Rutcofsky, Max Rutcofsky, and Jennifer Greene.

Timothy Stoke and Jessica Greene Stoke Wedding July 22, 2017

tom thumb graduate gets married

Nancy Brophy, Jessica Greene Stoke and Timothy Stokes

We salute Tom Thumbers everywhere as the Generation of Americans that will shape this world!

Cullen Malzo Hero

picture cullen malzo tom thumb graduate and hero of rescuing 2 girls

Cullen Malzo 2001 Tom Thumb Preschool Graduate

Cullen Malzo, Tom Thumb Graduate

Cullen Malzo, a 2001 graduate of Tom Thumb, is nothing short of a hero. After two teenage girls from Mahopac were involved in a car accident on Thursday, November 10, 2016, Cullen sprung into action. The accident left them trapped in their car, upside down in Lake Mahopac.

Cullen to the Rescue

Police said that 19-year-old Cullen Malzo was nearby when he heard the crash. He dialed 911 and ran to the scene. Without hesitation, Cullen ran into the murky water and quickly pulled the girls out of an open window. Thankfully, the girls only suffered minor injuries.

We Salute Cullen Our Local Hero

Cullen Malzo is just that kind of person; compassionate, confident and fearless. From a very young age, Cullen has exhibited these characteristics and his actions are nothing less than heroic. Our community is very proud of him. We all have such confidence and pride in our Next Generation of Great Americans, where Cullen Malzo is a remarkable example.

Tom Thumb Alumni in Olympics

Tom Thumb Alumni in Olympics

Meet Mohegan Lake’s Olympian, Melissa Gonzalez

Picture of Melissa-Gonzalez tom picture thumb preschool alumni in the Olympics

Previous Tom Thumb Preschool student is now in the Olympics

Melissa is Lakeland High School’s field hockey superstar. Melissa is going for the gold in Rio by competing as part of the USA Women’s Field Hockey team.┬á The challenge is to be the best in the world. Read the entire article by clicking on our Tom Thumb Olympian.

Thank you from Marty

Hi Nancy,

martyThank you so much for being a part of my farewell dinner, and for the card and gifts. It was a very special night for me.

I didn’t know your email address, but knew I could find Tom Thumb’s. I had fun looking at the photos on your website. It brought back memories of when my kids went there. Amazing that Ann Gaspari is still a part of the school. You do a great job year after year with the school and I wish you many more years of success.

You were always a fun partner at tennis too. I really like that you never give up and keep encouraging your partner too. I miss those afternoon games.

I hope you have a wonderful holiday and a great 2016.


The Wizard of Oz at the Paramount In Peekskill

Dear Nancy,

Hope all is wonderful.

We wanted to share some exciting news with you.

Gabbie Sansone, (former Tom Thumber) has been cast in the feature role of Dorothy Gale in the Musical version of The Wizard of OZ for Jan 16 , 17 and 18th at the Paramount Hudson Valley in Peekskill NY.

Gabbie at 15 is the same age as Judy Garland when she played the movie role and as seen on Chanel 5 News the Authentic Yellow Brick Road is in Peekskill New York , right here in the Hudson Valley !!! Wizard of Oz Author L. Frank Baum attended Military school in the Hudson Valley and it is said the Area was the true Inspiration for the book.

Gabbie has been fortunate enough to land a few TV spots and to perform off-Broadway , also she did a European Tour over the summer all the while keeping her straight A grades.

As a Tom Thumb Alumni – We believe much of Gabbie early introduction of music along with creative play and study at Tom Thumb helped to give her the early foundation and confidence in performing.

We know whether she is destined for Broadway or the Boardroom Gabbie will always be a Tom Thumb Kid.

Hope to see you soon , Wishes for a bless Holiday!

Deborah and Gabbie Sansone

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