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Meet Our



Helen Day

Helen Day joined The Richmond Hill Historical Society in 1998 and became a board member the following year. She has served as Secretary from 2009 to 2010 and Vice President from 2011 to 2020, becoming President in February 2020 upon the passing of President Ivan Mrakovcic. Helen is also the Sr. Vice President and Secretary for the Friends of Maple Grove Cemetery in Kew Gardens.  


Now retired after thirty-three years as a Customer Service Manager at Verizon, Helen devotes most of her time to her passions for history, historical events and research and preserving the history of Richmond Hill. 

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Carl Ballenas


Thanks to Carl Ballenas, much of what we know about Richmond Hill’s history comes from his thoughtful and dedicated research which he has so kindly offered to share over the years.

Born in Brooklyn, Carl was raised in Richmond Hill, NY and resided there for many years. He attended Our Lady of the Cenacle School and later became a teacher at the Immaculate Conception School – Jamaica Estates. Among his many achievements and awards in regard to his caliber as a Richmond Hill Historian are as follows: 

  • The History Channel receipent for bringing the preservation of local history to life in the classroom.

  • “2007 Save Our History Teacher” award for distinguished work with his students and enabling them to take an active role in the preservation process.

  • Listed with the Queens Borough Office as an official lecturer for Queens County.

  • Has given symposiums on Queens history and presented a number of written papers.

  • Richmond Hill Historian 1985 – Present

  • Board Member of the Richmond Hill Historical Society

  • Board Member Central Queens Historical Society 1988 – Present

  • Member of Community Board #9 1986 – 1988

  • Received Award- Who’s Who of American Teachers

  • 1999 Grant Winner – United Federation of Teachers

  • 1999 Science Teacher Award – Association of Science Technology Centers

  • Henry Dopwell Foundation Grant Winner

  • New York Hall of Science – Teacher Consultant

  • 1999 White House Artisan – Washington DC

  • 2005 – Grant Winner and Teacher Ambassador for the Peacewords Foundation

  • The National Catholic Educational Association Department of Elementary Schools
    2006 NCEA Distinguished Teacher Award In Honor of Sister Miriam Joseph Farrell

  • 2006 Siemens Science Teacher Initiative Award In Partnership with the New York Hall of Science

  • Winner of the Diocese of Brooklyn/Queens Futures in Education Foundation Grant for the Labyrinth Project

In addition Carl Ballenas is a published author and one of the credited contributers of Willam Krooss’ book entitled, “A Peek at Richmond Hill Through the Keyhole of Time.” 


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