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Norwalk STAR's Beth Cohen Retires After 40 Years Of Work With Disabled Kids

Beth Cohen with photos of her clients over the years. Photo Credit: Contributed
Beth Cohen with Darien youngster Hope Piorkowski. Photo Credit: Contributed

NORWALK, Conn. -- Stamford resident Beth Cohen, an occupational therapist with STAR, Inc. Rubino Family Center Birth to Three Program in Norwalk, shared some of her special memories as she retires this month from almost 20 years at STAR, and after 40 years in the field.

Cohen grew up in Wilmington, Del. and received her OT certification from Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons. She recalls her first days working with STAR at Rainbow Station, a program for infants and children with developmental disabilities housed in St. Mark’s Church in New Canaan that eventually moved to its present quarters on East Avenue in Norwalk.

Over the years, Cohen has helped hundreds of children reach their developmental milestones with therapies and exercises to address their specific needs and those of their families and caregivers.

“When we were expecting our baby, we dreamed that she would have a life full of learning, fulfillment, and happiness as part of our family and the community. We made a conscious choice not to change those dreams when we found out that she would be born with a disability. Beth first saw Hope when she was less than a month old. It was immediately clear that she shared our sense of optimism for the future and over the next years gave us a road map for how to help Hope develop to the best of her abilities," Catherine and Ed Piorkowski, of Darien, said fondly of Cohen's work with their daughter and family.

Beth and her husband, David, who also recently retired as the State’s Attorney in the Stamford/Norwalk courts, will be temporarily relocating to a summer home they purchased in the Catskills until they board their October flight to Israel where they will reside.

In honor of Beth’s years of service, the STAR, Inc. Board of Directors have voted to establish a special fund, the Beth Cohen Birth to Three Family Fund.

Donations to the fund in Beth’s name can be made by visiting www.starct.org and going to the donation page. Any family interested in sending a note to Beth can do so by mail to STAR, Inc., 182 Wolfpit Avenue, Norwalk, Conn. 06851 or by email to psaverine@starinconline.com.

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