Councilwoman Joan Cergol, who was elected to the Town Board in November 2018, is a lifelong resident of Huntington widely known as a knowledgeable and compassionate advocate for the betterment of her hometown and its 200,000+ residents. In addition to her common sense approach and well-developed problem solving skills, Joan brings to the Council a wealth of Town knowledge and experience with seventeen years of executive level economic and community development public service to Huntington. Joan’s Town government service is preceded by 18 years of public and private sector management level positions in public relations and marketing, including her own business.
Using her private sector skills in a public forum, has Joan helped countless businesses and individuals navigate government bureaucracy to solve their problems. As a result, the Times of Huntington Newspaper named Joan their Woman of the Year in Government in 2012, calling her the “go-to-girl in government.” In 2011, Sustainable Long Island bestowed upon Joan its “Getting it Done” Award for her work in leading the Town’s efforts in the creation and completion of Huntington Station’s Gateway Park.
Joan has long worked with community and business groups to build consensus for projects that promote economic vibrancy in the town’s downtown hamlet centers. These groups have come to rely upon and trust Joan’s guidance, commitment and care in ensuring the coordination of town services and support from other levels of government that are vital to their success. Her grant writing pursuits have brought many millions to Town projects.
Joan attended Huntington Union Free School District (as Joan DeVito) from K-12, graduating from Huntington High School in 1979. She attended Loyola University of Chicago to pursue her interest in communications, later transferring to Long Island to earn her B.A. degree, cum laude, from Long Island University, with a major in public relations and a minor in journalism. She is a member of the 2016 Class of the Energeia Partnership, a high level leadership training program developed by Molloy College for proven ethical leaders.
Joan has served as an adjunct professor of public relations at St. Joseph’s College and Long Island University. Both institutions invited Joan to develop her own course curricula based upon contemporary public relations practice as it related to the private and public sectors.
In her spare time Joan has served as a guest columnist for The Long Islander Newspaper, co-authored two books about the history of OHEKA Castle, and authors a web-based blog with stories and insights that connect her with people throughout Huntington, and beyond. Her volunteer service includes work as the public information officer for the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary, for which she promoted boating safety courses and assistance to Huntington Interfaith Homeless Initiative, Huntington Historical Society, among other groups.
Joan is married to Greg Cergol, WNBC-TV’s Long Island Reporter. Joan & Greg have two grown daughters who work in the creative and entertainment fields.