Obituary of Mr. George Zeppenfeldt

January 13, 2020


Born in the City of New York on December 15, 1946, to Belen Cestero and George Zeppenfeldt, George A. Zeppenfeldt-Cestero matured into an articulate man keenly aware of his thinking and feelings on most issues. By all accounts, family, friends and colleagues, he was tenacious, resourceful and creative.

He was a graduate of Seton Hall University, class of 1970, and was recognized in numerous academic and professional awards including, among others: the 1999 Kellogg/Robert Wood Johnson Fellowship; election as member to the national board of the Institute for Diversity in Health Management, a division of the American Hospital Association in 2001, and recipient of the Healthcare Leadership Award from the National Hispanic Medical Association in 2006.

George's leadership and creativity are best illustrated by AHHE (the Association of Hispanic Healthcare Executives, He established AHHE in 1998 and devoted his energy for more than twenty years to its development and empowerment. Reflecting his values the AHHE mission statement addresses healthcare disparities, the development of Hispanic/Latino/a mentorship, and the inclusion of Latino communities, and other underrepresented ethnic minorities, in furtherance of the redress of healthcare disparities. While AHHE's focus is national in scale and has grown to include 25 national, regional and local organizations and over 3000 individuals, George's service on the board of directors of Community Board 7, in Manhattan during the 1990s, exemplifies his commitment to grassroots, community organization for social change. This memorial statement list, in part, recognition and honors earned. It is more difficult to convey George's passion and compassion in pursuit of his achievements or the development of a deliciously droll sense of humor along the way.

Those who loved him, family, friends, and colleagues, feel diminished by the loss.

George is survived by his mother, Belen Cestero of New York, NY, maternal uncle, George J. Cestero of Dover, DE, and first cousins, prima/o hermana/o, including Renée Llanusa-Cestero of New York, NY; Frank A. Llanusa of New York, NY; Gloria Jean Cestero of Hudson, NY; George T. Cestero of Carmel, NY; Julie Garcia of Ft. Lauderdale, FL, and Ivan Z. Cestero of London, England. Among the Zeppenfeldts, George is survived by: Geraldine Merino of Las Vegas, NV; Robert Zeppenfeldt of Roanoke, TX; Bridget Tallent of Louisville, KY, and Edward Zeppenfeldt of Palm Spring, CA.

A memorial reception will take place on Saturday, February 1st from 3:30 pm to 5:30 pm at the New York Academy of Medicine, 1216 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY.
A memorial scholarship fund has been created on and will assist in the su

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May he Rest In Peace

Posted by: Irma Ortiz Cestero - Lodi, NJ - January 27, 2020

may George rest in peace; great Latino, leader, open doors for others to follow.

Posted by: nelson vega-garcia - new york, NY - February 10, 2020

George was a dedicated and zealous advocate of mentoring and promoting Latino healthcare professionals and related causes.

Posted by: Irwin B. Katz - , - July 16, 2020