Watch our video celebrating 10 years of the Back2School Store
The National Council of Jewish Women, Essex County Section (NCJW/Essex) honored Cathy Silverman of Roseland, NJ, at a Crown Jewels Gala in recognition of her dedication and leadership during 18 years serving as Executive Director.
The Crown Jewels Gala was held at the Crystal Plaza in Livingston, NJ, on Thursday, November 1, 2018, to honor Silverman and celebrate the 10th anniversary of one of the signature programs of NCJW/Essex, the Back 2 School Store. As Executive Director, Silverman has sparked the growth of NCJW/Essex with many new and innovative programs and initiatives such as the Back 2 School Store, Chai Circle, Mitzvah-in-a-Minute, the Period.Project, the Kids Emergency Closet, the Women’s Seder and the A-List for Advocacy to name just a few. She has doubled the organization’s professional staff, tripled the budget, and quadrupled assets. With Silverman at the helm, NCJW/Essex, has made a difference in the lives of women, children and families throughout Essex County and New Jersey.
Silverman, a lifetime member of NCJW, commented, “For 20 years as a volunteer and then 18 years as Executive Director, one thing has never changed in the way I feel about NCJW/Essex – there is no other organization more special than this one. Every day I look forward to my job and the work we do which enables me to experience the pure joy of the women, children and families whose lives we improve with our services.”
NCJW/Essex has been an advocate for social change in Essex County for over 100 years. Nearly 300 benefactors, volunteers, friends, family and staff were proud to pay tribute to Silverman at the Crown Jewels Gala.
“Throughout her tenure Cathy has demonstrated a constant desire to grow and nourish our organization, supporting creative ideas and innovative possibilities every year,” said NCJW/Essex President Lesley Greenstein. “Her continued efforts in fundraising have been instrumental in our ability to meet the needs of our community with new events and programs. We are so very lucky to have her.”
In addition, the evening featured recognition of the 10th anniversary of the NCJW/Essex Back 2 School Store, a one-day pop-up store that outfits economically disadvantaged children in Essex County with brand new clothing, school supplies and personal care items to help them start school on a positive note, and a special performance by mentalist Oz Pearlman who left the audience speechless with his mind-reading skills.
University Hospital in Newark, NJ, was presented the Helen D. Schwartz Memorial Crystal Award at the NCJW/Essex Opening Event on October 23, 2018 at Brooklake Country Club in Florham Park, NJ. This award honors an individual, agency or corporation making an impact in the community and exemplifying the goals and purposes of the National Council of Jewish Women through outstanding vision and contribution to the community in education, social action and service.
“We have forged a wonderful relationship with University Hospital that began 10 years ago through the NCJW/Essex Back 2 School Store,” commented Lesley Greenstein, President of NCJW/Essex. “University Hospital was one of our original service providers for the Gaelen Family Resource Center and has provided countless families who have attended our Back 2 School Store with invaluable information and health screenings they otherwise may not have been able to access.”
Accepting the award on behalf of University Hospital were Annette Hastings, Chief Administrative Officer, Michelle Hepburn, Director of the Emergency Department and Mary Maples, Esq., Chief Legal Officer. “The future of Newark is in its children,” said Hepburn, “and we are privileged to work each year at the NCJW/Essex Back 2 School Store where the atmosphere is inspiring. It is great to be able to help the community in this way.”
PHOTO: Pictured (l to r) are Mary Maples, Esq., Chief Legal Officer, University Hospital, Annette Hastings, Chief Administrative Officer, University Hospital, Lesley Greenstein, President, NCJW/Essex and Michelle Hepburn, Director of the Emergency Department. University Hospital accepted the Helen D. Schwartz Memorial Crystal Award in recognition of its commitment to NCJW/Essex and improving the quality of life for women, children and families.