Oakwood Cemetery in the Spring time

Board Members

Connie Palumb, board member

Connie Palumb

Board Member

Former President of HOCPA for several years; an Employee Assistance Professional and registered nurse by trade; retired from a thirty-year stint with the Syracuse City Schools As the EAP Coordinator.

Sue Greenhagen, board member

Sue Greenhagen

Board Member

Sue received her BA from Mount St. Mary College, MA at St. Bonaventure University, and MLS at Syracuse University. She worked as a Librarian at SUNY Morrisville and is now retired. She is the Historian of the Village of Morrisville and Co-Historian in the Town of Eaton. Sue is a member of Morrisville Historic Preservation Commission Board of Directors, Morrisville Rural Cemetery, Association of Public Historians of New York State, Onondaga County Civil War Round Table, and Daughters of Union Veterans of the Civil War.

Diane L. Medvitz, board member

Diane L. Medvitz

Board Member

In 2010 she became a photo volunteer for findagrave.com, and since that time has created over 50,000 memorials and submitted 90,500 photos of markers and monuments to the web site. Working with Tom Cadwell she helped enter all the names of Oakwood’s residents, and together photographed the entire cemetery in order to create a visual record of deteriorating markers. It was in doing that work that she became interested in serving on the HOCPA board.

David Haas, board member

David Haas

Board Member

Born and raised in the city of Syracuse, David lives in the Eastwood neighborhood where volunteers for several community organizations. A graduate of SUNY Oswego (BS ‘09) and SUNY Cortland (MS ‘11), he is the Executive Director of Sarah’s Guest House, a healthcare hospitality home. A person who stutters, David is the leader of the Syracuse chapter of the National Stuttering Association. He often speaks to local schools, organizations and agencies and has given a TEDx Talk on the topic. Most notably, David owns and operates the Instagram account, @SyracuseHistory, for which he has received various local and state awards and recognition.

Rick Naylor, board member

Rick Naylor


Rick is a native Syracusan and lives in the Bradford Hills/Nottingham neighborhood with his wife Diane and teenage twin girls. He has always been a huge fan of old cemeteries, gravestone carvings, mausoleum architecture, history and collects lanterns, old railroad and nautical stuff. He can be often found in Oakwood enjoying a peaceful walk or working hard to keep up with the “Crypt Keepers” and Karl on cemetery projects. Rick has spent over 30 years as an Insurance and Financial Advisor in private practice and lastly in a corporate planning position.  He now owns an education consulting business based in the insurance industry. He’s has served many years on different boards and enjoys event planning, fundraising and membership.

Hilary Donohue, board member

Hilary Donohue

Board Member

Hilary Donohue is a registered architect and the owner of City Link Architecture PLLC based out of the Westside of Syracuse. She graduated from Syracuse University’s School of Architecture in 2010 and has been working to improve the housing stock in Syracuse ever since. She is an active and engaged resident involved as a facilitator for the Westside TNT, treasurer on the Near Westside Initiative board of directors and, most recently, a member of the HOCPA board. You can often find her walking through Oakwood and staring at trees with dog and baby in tow.


Chrissy Burd


Chrissy grew up on a farm in the small town of Boylston, located in Winona State Forest in the heart of Tug Hill. After attending the School of Architecture at Syracuse University she relocated to Seattle and returned to Syracuse in 2021 after almost 30 years away. Out of curiosity for the history, fondness for the nature, and appreciation for the structures, Chrissy frequented Oakwood Cemetery while attending SU. She is overjoyed to be able to visit the cemetery again at whim and even more pleased to be a contributing board member of HOCPA. Chrissy is an artist & avid gardener living in the Westcott neighborhood, and she works as a comptroller for a massage & acupuncture business in Seattle, as well as a bookkeeper for an architecture firm in Olympia. As a remote worker, HOCPA is the perfect way for Chrissy to engage in and be of use to the local community in a meaningful way.

Karl Orlick, board member

Karl Orlick

Board Member

Karl owned and operated an auto repair business and has been a member of HOCPA since its inception in 1991.  He is known for Karl’s Rambles, the tours he leads.  HOCPA’s Mr. Fixit also maintains the physical plant, including securing the chapel and the office, building the Dedication Valley kiosk and currently installing location signs in each section of the cemetery.

Paul R. Harvey, board member

Paul R. Harvey

Vice President

Paul Harvey taught for many years in local schools. He now works as a consultant with schools, community organizations and government. He is excited to be working with HOCPA to help with the appreciation and restoration of this community treasure known as Oakwood Cemetery.

Amy Hamilton, secretary

Amy Hamilton


I saw the overgrowth on John Crouse’s mausoleum, on Myres’ and Leavenworth’s; and couldn’t resist getting to work! I’ve done clean-up elsewhere, as well. I just want to make the place beautiful!

Eileen Hollis, board member

Eileen Hollis

Board Member

Eileen Hollis was born and raised in Syracuse, NY and grew up above her father’s business, Hollis Funeral Home. She became a fully licensed funeral director in October 2017 and will be taking over her fathers business in the distant future! Eileen has a deep love for Oakwood Cemetery. Her ancestors are buried there and she has fond memories of sledding down the cemeteries snow covered roads as a little kid. Eileen became a HOCPA board member in the Fall of 2020. She has quite the following on TikTok, too. Feel free to ask her all the funeral related questions you’ve been dying to know!

John Auwaerter, board member

John Auwaerter

Board Member

John has been a member of HOCPA since shortly after moving to Syracuse in 1997, and is happy to finally contribute as a board member.  John is a Co-Director of ESF’s Center for Cultural Landscape Preservation, leads the Center’s work developing preservation plans for the National Park Service, and serves as an advisor to the ESF Friends of Oakwood student group. He has degrees in history, historic preservation planning, and landscape architecture.

Daniel Stazzone, board member

Daniel Stazzone

Board Member

Daniel came to Syracuse in 2002 to receive his Bachelor of Landscape Architecture at SUNY-ESF. After graduating he worked as a Neighborhood Planner and Real Estate Administrator for Home HeadQuarters, Inc. and then pursued for profit real estate for several years. He now works for the Syracuse Land Bank and lives on the Eastside of Syracuse within walking distance to Oakwood Cemetery. His first exposure to Oakwood was in college and he has been enamored with it ever since.

In Memoriam

In memory of board members Haden Patten, Letty Murray and Darothy DeAngelo

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