Thursday, September 20, 2018

Local Residents Join New Class of Bergen LEADS

Bergen LEADS, the County’s first and only civic leadership program, will begin its seminar year on September 17.  The program, sponsored by the Bergen Volunteer Center, prepares leaders to tackle the tough challenges facing Bergen County today and in the future. 

            The class, which was chosen though a competitive process in early 2018, will meet monthly to dissect issues, debate viewpoints and develop approaches to community problems.  Under the guidance of former Bergen County Executive William “Pat” Schuber, Bergen LEADS Seminar Director, participants are immersed in a stimulating curriculum that not only introduces them to topical issues of local importance, but also enables them to explore their leadership styles, enhance their leadership capacity and become meaningfully engaged in helping to solve some of the challenges facing Bergen County.

 “We are thrilled with the level of commitment and energy that this new class demonstrates.  A critical component of Bergen LEADS is developing in participants a sense of responsibility for the community,” says Lynne Algrant, Bergen LEADS Director.  “We’re eager to see what this class will accomplish.  Will they champion a cause?  Run for office? Launch a social enterprise venture?  Lead a community organization?  The sky’s the limit.”

Funding for Bergen LEADS is provided by participant tuition plus generous contributions from individuals and area corporations and foundations.

The members of the Class of 2019 are:

Mahwah  resident Kerry Barrett of Pony Power Therapies; Boiling Springs Savings Bank’s Gerard Beaman of Bloomfield, Stephanie LiCausi of Woodland Park, Joanne Lopez of Roselle, and Linda Pesch of Dumont; Westwood resident Lisa Bontemps of Westwood for All Ages; Woodcliff Lake residents Michael Casale of Orange and Rockland Utilities and Jill Strassberg; Hackensack residents Victor Brown of Bergen Community College, Zonie LaSane of County of Bergen;  Closter resident Dahlia Cooper of Girl Scouts of Northern NJ; Paterson resident Lucinda Council of Merrill Lynch in Paramus; Bergenfield resident Danielle De Laurentis of The Northern New Jersey Community Foundation ; HoHoKus resident James Delia of Wells, Jaworski, and Liebman, LLP; Fair Lawn resident Leslie Felner of the Bergen County Care Fair; Teaneck residents Inez Johnson of GPS Empowerment,  Rayshawna Fraser of GLAAM, Inc., and Natalie Robinson of Pearson; Oradell resident Kathleen Keating of McCarter & English, LLP; Ramsey resident Dorothy Kalksma of Konica Minolta; Clifton resident Eugene Liauw of GYMGUYS in New Milford; North Haledon resident Jennifer Luberto-Stuber of Riverdell Regional High school in Oradell; Ringwood resident Maria Mansfield of Hackensack Merdian, John Theurer Cancer Center in Hackensack; Montville resident Nicole McDonough of Archer & Greiner in Hackensack; Pompton Plains resident Sandie Pardey of NJM Insurance Group in Parsippany; Newark resident Keith Parham of United Energy Advisors; Tamiment, PA resident Rainer Solano of Right at Home in Oradell; Emerson resident Nicholas Tseng of PSEG; and Rochelle Park resident Valerie Vladyka of Schenck Prices Smith & King, LLC.

Bergen LEADS seeks individuals from all ethnic, racial and socio-economic backgrounds who espouse different political, religious and social views for future classes.  Visit  for more information. Applications for the next Bergen LEADS class will be accepted January 1 to April 10, 2019.

The Bergen Volunteer Center turns caring into meaningful action by connecting people to volunteer opportunities.

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