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Amsterdam, NY ,



Arthur P. Cotugno

Wednesday, May 28, 2014 - Updated: 10:40 AM

May 23, 2014

Arthur P. Cotugno, 78 of Wilkes Avenue passed away Friday, May 23, 2014.

He was born in Amsterdam on April 25, 1936 the beloved son of the late Antonio and Gilda Marcuccio Cotugno.

Art was a 1954 graduate of Wilbur H. Lynch High School and received a Bachelors of Arts in 1960 from Siena College; Foreign Language Summer Institute from Bucknell University in 1963; Master of Science - Education Administration, Siena College in 1966. He also received certification for New York State Permanent Teaching in English and Spanish and School District Administrator and School District Supervisor. Art attended other universities including St. Bonaventure University, the State University of New York at Albany and State University of New York at Oneonta.

A life long Amsterdam resident he served with the U.S. Army during the Korean Conflict in Orleans, France.

He was married to his loving wife, Mary Grace Cotugno (Liggero) on June 21, 1959.

In 1960 Art began his career in education teaching English and Mathematics at Mayfield Central School. In 1961 he began his long career in the Greater Amsterdam School District as a Spanish teacher at Wilbur H. Lynch High School and also was an Instructor of Spanish at Fulton Montgomery Community College Evening Division. From 1965-69 Art also served as the GASD Coordinator of Foreign Languages.

He became the Assistant Principal at Theodore Roosevelt Junior High School starting in 1969 until 1971 when he became the Principal. He was also the Principal at the Wilbur H. Lynch Middle School until 1983.

Art took the position of Director of Staff Personnel from 1983-91 for the district until be became Superintendent of Schools for GASD from 1991 until his retirement on June 20, 1995.

In 1996 Art served as interim school principal and superintendent in several area school districts including the Greater Amsterdam School District, Mayfield Central School District and the Gloversville Enlarged School District. Also, held interim Superintendent positions at Argyle Central School and Schoharie Central School District. He held various interim positions from 2000 to 2004 with HFM BOCES which included, Interim Principal, Special Education Summer School, Director of Special Ed, Assistant Superintendent and Special Education Summer School.

Art had many community affiliations and recognition's which included; Board Member of Centro Civico of Amsterdam; Panelist - Blue Ribbon School of Excellence Review - New York State Department of Education; Evaluator - Grants 2000 Project Awards- New York State Department of Education; Member of Amsterdam Memorial Hospital Foundation Board; CO-Chairperson 1996-1997 Festival of Trees Amsterdam Free Library; New York State PTA Distinguished Service Award; Member of Amsterdam Rotary Club; New York State Assembly - Special Commendation Award; Amsterdam Hispanic Heritage Foundation-Special Commendation Award; Citizen of the Year Award - Amsterdam Rotary Club; Board Member Amsterdam YMCA; President Amsterdam YMCA; Outstanding Service Award - Catholic Youth Organization; Program Coordinator - Catholic Youth Organization Day Camp Supervisor; Chairman - Civic General Division, Amsterdam United Way Foundation; Manager/Coach - Wee Men's Baseball; Membership Committee - Amsterdam YMCA; Distinguished Service Award Amsterdam Jaycees.

Art's greatest joy was attending all of his grandchildren's educational and athletic events. Being a competitor, such as Art was, you could find him every morning at the Fitness Center, with his buddies, playing many games of racquetball. With his flare for languages, Art would speak to people in Spanish, Italian, Polish or French.

Art is survived by his beloved wife, Mary Grace (Liggero) Cotugno. He was the proud father of Dr. Kyle (Adriene) Cotugno and Dr. Aaron (Nicole) Cotugno. Poppy to his pride and joys, Kylie Brooke Cotugno, Korey Arthur Cotugno, Carson Arthur Cotugno and Spencer Marcus Cotugno. He is also survived by one sister, Anna Squillace and several nieces, nephews and cousins.

He was predeceased by his parents and siblings, Rita Bianchi, Dr. Dominic Cotugno, Edward Cotugno and Jeanette Cotugno.

Relatives and friends are invited to attend a Mass of Christian Burial Friday, May 30, 2014 at Mount Carmel Roman Catholic Church at 11:00 a.m.

Burial will follow at Mount Carmel Cemetery with full military honors.

There are no calling hours.

Contributions in Art's memory may be made to the Amsterdam Free Library, 28 Church Street , Amsterdam, New York 12010 or to the Arthur P. Cotugno Memorial Scholarship Fund, 239 Northern Blvd., Amsterdam, NY 12010.


Comments made about this article - 2 Total

Posted By: Pete Baldine On: 6/6/2014

Title: Mr.

I am very saddened to hear of Art's passing. I have to say that he is truly one of my favorite people I have ever met in my lifetime. Art was an intelligent and classy man that I always had the utmost respect for. I have known him since I was a little kid ad I can tell you that we lost a great one. They just don't make a man any better than Art Cotugno. My condolences to Mary Grace, Kyle & Aaron

Posted By: David S. Brownell and his wife, Karen, who had the pleasure to work for Art. On: 5/28/2014


I remember working alongside Art during the building of the "wooden" playground at the old Bacon School. He was helping to shovel gravel into certain area of the grounds. I was helping with some of the carpentry. As he was working, he looked up as I was walking by with a piece of lumber that I had just cut. He yelled out: "You're the best." How great it felt being called "the best" by someone who truly was the best! He is someone who I never will forget. I think I share that feeling with the residents of Amsterdam and the other communities in which he worked.

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