Three local women were presented with awards for their leadership, service and contributions at the NCJW/Essex Annual Installation and Awards Evening, which took place Wednesday, June 1, 2016 at Cedar Hill Country Club in Livingston, NJ.
Ellen Barocas of Cedar Grove, NJ, was the recipient of The Hannah G. Solomon Award, presented by NCJW/Essex to an individual who has changed the lives of others through leadership efforts and service on a community level. Barocas is attracted to the mission of advocating for women, children and families. Both for NCJW/Essex and other advocacy efforts, she has channeled her passions and made a difference on a community level, earning her the distinction of the Hannah G. Solomon Award.
Always the advocate and community organizer, Barocas has worked relentlessly for those less fortunate. She has sat in front of grocery stores to do voter registration and lobbied at legislators’ offices. She was a founder of the Public Education Committee in West Orange, has strong ties to Temple Sharey Tefilo-Israel, maintains her deep commitment to the Jewish Community Housing Corporation and is currently chairing the 100th Anniversary celebration for the Sephardic Jewish Brotherhood of America. For NCJW/Essex, Ellen created the petition to lobby the state to designate February as Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month in NJ. Her leadership helped expand the popular “Politics and Pastry” program and the growth and success of the “Lunch and Learn” programs.
Robin Abrams of North Caldwell, NJ, was the recipient of the Service to Section Award, recognized for her passion and dedication as a volunteer for 35 years. Abrams has served in numerous roles for NCJW/Essex including as a member of the Art Show Steering Committee, co-chair of Holocaust education and a participant in MLK Day activities. More recently she has assumed leadership roles for several fundraising activities including the Special Gifts campaign, the Golf Outing, House Tour and Card Party. Abram’s broad spectrum of activities and her tireless work as a volunteer has earned her the Service to Section Award.
Lauren Scher of Livingston, NJ was the recipient of the Henrietta Weiser Emerging Leader Award, presented to a promising NCJW/Essex member who has demonstrated leadership potential. For Scher the opportunity to make a difference locally has been behind her evolving role within NCJW/Essex.
Scher first started volunteering with the Mitzvah-in-a-Minute program and became a committed volunteer with the Teen Dating Abuse Project serving as an Assistant and a Presenter. She has since moved up the leadership ladder to Vice President of Volunteer Outreach. With hands-on responsibility for numerous volunteer initiatives including Mitzvah-in-a-Minute, VolunTeens/VolunTweens, Kids Emergency Closet, Empty Bowls No More and the Eskow Volunteer Awards, Lauren has found that at NCJW/Essex the chance to participate is infinite. Scher will assume the role of Vice President of Programming for the coming year.