Announcing the Winners of the First Talent United Contest!

With a total of 10,045 votes cast for 19 finalists in the Talent United contest, United Way of the Dutchess-Orange Region revealed the three top winners during its annual Celebration of Service on Tuesday, June 8, 2021: students from the Sheahan-Gormley School of Irish Dance (Winner), Justus Crow (1st Runner-Up), Mark Briscoe & Kathy Nigro (2nd Runner-Up). To view a recording of the Talent United segment of Celebration of Service and to see all the contestants' submissions, go to

“This was an incredibly close contest,” Jeannie Montano, President & CEO of United Way explained. “Each of the 19 finalists is incredibly talented and our community selected the winners by casting their votes. We were so excited to see so many people engaged in voting, watching the finalists’ videos, and attending our Celebration of Service to see the winners revealed! I wish to thank all the finalists for sharing their talent with all of us!”

Students from the Sheahan-Gormley School of Irish Dance are the Winners of the first Talent United contest. These 11 to 14 year-old-students—Megan Bushey, Ella McCormick, Natalie McLaughlin, Kelly Monahan, Riley Parker, Chloe Sheil and Emily Sheil—performed a fusion Irish Dance on the shore of Greenwood Lake, NY. They study together at the Sheahan-Gormley School of Irish Dance in Greenwood Lake under the direction of Unateresa Gormley.

The First Runner-Up is Justus Crow. Justus, a senior at James I. O’Neill High School in Highland Falls, NY, performed an excerpt from the first movement of Roger Boutry’s Divertimento for alto saxophone. Justus has been playing saxophone for the last 8 years and plans to study music education in college. 


The Second Runner Up is the dance team of Mark Briscoe and Kathy NigroBased in Poughkeepsie, NY, Mark and Kathy performed a Lindy Hop Dance routine along the banks of the Hudson River and other local locations. Mark and Kathy dance regularly with Hudson Valley Community Dances. 

The winners will each receive a special prize as well as a donation made in their honor to a charity of their choice that serves Dutchess and Orange county residents. 

The sixteen Talent United finalists are: Anna Capocci (Pawling, NY), Jeremy Dickinson (Hyde Park, NY), Brandon Drake (Milan, NY), Eleventh Hour (Greenwood Lake, NY), Stefanie Healy (Wappingers Falls, NY), Identity Crisis (Greenwood Lake, NY), Christian Laura (Poughkeepsie, NY), Mackenzie Lewis (Poughkeepsie, NY), Kiera Masci (Middletown, NY), Areyanna McCarthy (Goshen, NY), Christie Orr (Wallkill, NY), Parental Lock (Greenwood Lake, NY), ReUnion (Greenwood Lake, NY), Sabrina Sargent (New Windsor, NY), Julianna & Meredith Sundberg (Stanfordville, NY) and Stringendo’s Vivace Orchestra (Poughkeepsie, NY).

United Way of the Dutchess-Orange Region’s Celebration of Service 2021 was hosted by Annie and Ryan from Q92’s Annie and Ryan in the Morning, During the event, United Way Board Chair presented the Distinguished Service Award for KeyBank to John Manginelli, KeyBank’s Regional Real Estate Capital Executive and Market President. United Way also honored the top 10 Workplace Campaigns (Central Hudson Gas & Electric Corp., IBM, UPS, RBT CPAs LLP, C&S Wholesale Grocers, Adams Fairacre Farms, Hannaford Supermarkets, Orange & Rockland Utilities, Package Pavement, and Orange Bank & Trust Co.), the Top Growth Award (Tompkins Mahopac Bank) and two Nonprofit Spotlights (Dutchess Outreach and Newburgh Armory Unity Center). To view a recording of Celebration of Service and learn more about the event, go to

United Way of the Dutchess-Orange Region would like to thank its sponsors that help support its critical work in the community:

Annual Sponsors: IBM, M&T Bank, Marshall & Sterling Insurance, Orange & Rockland Utilities and RBT CPA, LLP. 

Celebration of Service Sponsors:

Silver Sponsors: KeyBank, TD Bank, Unilock New York, Inc.

Bronze Sponsors: Adams Fairacre Farms, EC Media Group, Inc, Merrill, A Bank of America Company, Prager Metis, Ulster Savings Bank, and Vassar College

Business Supporters: Arthur DeDominicis Accountant & Consultants, Bruderhof Community at Fox Hill, Central Hudson Gas & Electric Corp., The Chazen Companies, Kevin Cleary & Holly Wahlberg, Connor & Associates Media Services, Dutchess Community College / Dutchess Community College Foundation, The Galleria at Crystal Run, Garnet Health Medical Center, Lakeland Bank, Law Office of Fred Clarke, Montefiore St. Luke’s Cornwall, Mutual of America, Newburgh Armory Unity Center, Poughkeepsie Galleria, Rose & Kiernan / NFP and Tompkins Mahopac Bank

Mission Moment Sponsor: Unilock New York, Inc.

Media Sponsors: Poughkeepsie Journal/LocaliQ and Q92/iHeart Media

Annual Sponsors

Premier Annual Sponsors: Central Hudson Gas & Electric, M&T Bank, Orange & Rockland, Pratt & WhitneyAnnual Sponsors: IBM, Resorts World, RBT, TD Bank, Ulster Savings