The New York Foundling President Melanie Hartzog (center) visited Sisters of Charity Center with Elizabeth Wright, Assistant VP, Marketing & Communications (left) and Ellen Eng, Ms. Hartzog’s Chief of Staff (right).

The New York Foundling’s new President and CEO, Melanie Hartzog, stopped in for a visit at Sisters of Charity Center on Monday, April 4. Her visit included a tour of the campus, a video interview for the upcoming Spring Benefit, and lunch with the sisters. Ms. Hartzog’s Chief of Staff, Ellen Eng, and Elizabeth Wright, Assistant VP, Marketing & Communications, accompanied her on the trip. It was Ms. Hartzog’s first visit to Mount Saint Vincent campus.

The Foundling visitors toured the campus with Sr. Karen Helfenstein, Director of Sponsorship Services. “Melanie commented about the beauty of the campus as we drove slowly along River Road. The Chapel of the Immaculate Conception took her breath away and she slowly walked up the aisle asking about the stained-glass windows and the Brumidi fresco above the altar,” said Sr. Karen. 

Ms. Hartzog toured the campus on her visit.

Sr. Karen reflected further, saying, “What impressed me most was Melanie’s comment as we began our lunchtime conversation. She said that she has worked for years in New York City government. She knew about The Foundling but only recently learned of the Congregation’s history and accomplishments throughout the years. She said to the Executive Council, ‘Thank you, sisters, you have changed New York!’ She wants to return to the Mount soon and said, gazing at the Hudson River and Palisades from the iconic porch, ‘I need a room!’”

Ms. Hartzog assumed the role of CEO and President earlier this year. She is the third lay leader to head The Foundling. She follows Bill Baccaglini, who recently retired after serving as CEO and President for 19 years. Mr. Baccaglini will continue to serve The Foundling as Senior Advisor to the Board of Trustees and Ms. Hartzog.

Ms. Hartzog’s visit comes on the heels of being named to City & State New York’s 2022 Above & Beyond, a list recognizing 50 remarkable women — including advocates, entrepreneurs, and other outstanding individuals — who are improving New York.

Ms. Hartzog (center) met with the SCNY Leadership Team at Sisters of Charity Center.

When the trio left for their return to Manhattan, all agreed that the visit was a great way to start the week. SC President Sr. Donna Dodge commented, “We had a delightful lunch with Melanie. We have so much in common in terms of our hopes for the future of The New York Foundling. We are grateful that Mel is at the helm to continue this great ministry in the spirit and tradition of our founders.”