05 May ESSEX COUNTY EXECUTIVE DIVINCENZO PRESENTS SIX ESSEX RESIDENTS WITH OUTSTANDING SENIOR CITIZEN AWARDS Annual Awards Program Recognizes Seniors who Contribute to the Success of the Senior Club Program

Belleville, NJ – Essex County Executive Joseph N. DiVincenzo, Jr. presented six Essex County residents with Outstanding Senior Citizen Awards during the 41st Annual Senior Citizen Luncheon at The Chandelier in Belleville on Thursday, May 5th. Approximately 150 Essex County seniors attended the annual celebration, which recognizes members of Essex County’s various senior clubs for their dedication and commitment to the program.

“Congratulations to our Senior Club members who are being recognized today. Whether you offered a kind word for your fellow members, gave a ride to someone who needs transportation, organized a trip or served as a club officer, your volunteer efforts are the reason this program continues to thrive,” DiVincenzo said. “Your actions contributed to a welcoming atmosphere where others can strike up new friendships, spend an afternoon and remain connected to their community. Thank you for Putting Essex County and our Seniors First,” he added.

Former U.S. Ambassador to Germany Phil Murphy joined the County Executive at the luncheon and described them as “the backbone of our community.” Freeholder Patricia Sebold said: “It’s very important for senior citizens to stay active and we are pleased to see you all take advantage of the clubs in our Parks System to remain involved in your community. Activities like these contribute to our quality of life and certainly are beneficial to all our residents.”

The Outstanding Senior Citizen Awardees are as follows:

Barbara Rosenberg from Belleville is a member of the Belleville Park Monday Club. She has been a member of the club for two years and currently serves as its Treasurer. Described as a vital member of the club, she plans and organizes different lunches every month and is actively trying to build membership.

Mary Ann Arnold from Nutley is a member of the Branch Brook Park Cherry Blossom Club. A member for four years, she started attending meetings when her mother, a long-time club member, could no longer come by herself. She has been a tremendous addition and help to the club.

Ramona Serra from Newark is a member of the Independence Park Monday Club. She has been a member of the club for 15 years, helping out even before she officially joined and having served as Sergeant-at-Arms and Vice President. She is kind, caring and patient, and well-liked by all the members of the club.

Carmen Sanchez from Bloomfield is a member of The North Ward Center’s Casa Israel. Born in Puerto Rico, she came to the United States in 1963 and worked as a sewing machine operator. She has been at Casa Israel since 2007 and enjoys a variety of recreational activities, especially religious and arts & crafts.

Kathleen Kaczynski from Roseland is a member of the Roseland Senior Citizens. A resident of Roseland for 42 years, she taught at Lester Noecker Elementary School for 25 years. She served 13 years as Roseland’s representative on the West Essex Regional Board, was named Italian-American Citizen of the Year in 2006, was a member of the Roseland Junior Woman’s Club, Roseland Municipal Youth Guidance Committee, Friends of the Roseland Public Library, Roseland’s 100th Anniversary Committee and Our Lady Blessed Sacrament Church.

Josie Nunez from Bloomfield is a member of the Watsessing Park Tuesday Club. A member for several years, she prepares the cake that is served at weekly meetings and enjoys playing bingo. She is described as a wonderful individual and an asset to the club.

The annual award program was sponsored by the Essex County Department of Parks, Recreation & Cultural Affairs. Essex County hosts 11 senior citizen clubs, and each one has the opportunity to nominate someone from their club for the award. This year, six clubs participated in the awards ceremony.

The Essex County Park System was created in 1895 and is the first county park system established in the United States. The Park System consists of more than 6,000 acres and has 22 parks, five reservations, an environmental center, a zoo, Treetop Adventure Course, ice skating rink, roller skating rink, three public golf courses, golf driving range, two miniature golf courses, three off-leash dog facilities, a castle and the Presby Memorial Iris Gardens.