Lisa Halperin - Co-President
I am the Co-President of the JCO of Northern Bergen County. In my previous life I was an attorney, and now, in my much busier and louder life I am a Mom to four sweet boys. And no, I am not trying for a girl, I don’t want a girl and my boys will take care of me when I’m old. I love horseback riding, reading and watching Syracuse play pretty much any sport. My passion is paying it forward!
I’ll bet you didn’t know… that I married my high school prom date.
Stacy Ceslowitz - Co-President
I live in Upper Saddle River and wear a variety of hats: litigator, mom, party planner, dog whisperer, and Co-President for the JCO of Northern Bergen County. My work as an attorney spills over into every aspect of my life – no joke, my daughters knew how to win an argument at age 3. I’m an eternal optimist obsessed with travel, red soled shoes, Disney half-marathons and planning kick*ss fundraisers. The most important lesson I hope to pass on to my two girls is that the best gift they can give to others is their time.
I’ll bet you didn’t know… that I used to read the dictionary in high school.
Marla Arum - VP Programming
I like to think that Jewish summer camp created the person I am today. It gave me a strong Jewish identity and instilled values upon me that were meant to be passed on to my children along with others. That along with the constant desire to do and then do some more is why I am taking an active role in the JCO. Since graduating from the University of Wisconsin (GO BADGERS!!) I have been working in advertising but that alone doesn't define me. Mom, wife, daughter, sister, friend, photographer and short order cook or culinary genius (depending on the day). It takes a village and with our village we can help make a difference!
I bet you didn't know...my camera is my favorite accessory (ok, so maybe some of you do!)
Brooke Braunstein - VP Creative
15 Random Things about Me: (1) Always a Jersey girl, I never heard of USR until I moved here (hidden gem!). (2) My husband, son and daughter are my favorite people in the world. (3) I love to bake but I am a terrible cook. (4) I have TWO Masters degrees in the Education field. (5) I ran the NYC marathon. (6) I am extremely fearful of heights. (7) If I wasn’t a teacher, I would want to be a personal stylist. (8) I recently started my own business called BE YOU Social Skills (#shamelessplug). (9) I went to UMASS because I was born in Boston and always felt a connection with the state. (10) I love a good arts and crafts project. (11) I am an animal lover and have a dog named Casey. (12) Exercise is my therapy. (13) My mind races 100 miles an hour but I am the slowest driver. (14) My favorite JCO event is the Make- A- Wish Luncheon because it helps teach our own children how to help others.
I’ll bet you didn’t know… that I believe in astrology and I am 100%% an Aquarius!
Alycia Fromberg -VP Technology
I joined the JCO after moving to Upper Saddle River as a way to become more involved and connect more deeply with our community. In my current role as a board member and VP of Technology, I rely on my experience as a graphic designer to lead the JCO’s overall design and advertising efforts.
I’ll bet you didn’t know… that I’m the middle child of three girls AND both of my sisters have the same birthday! Can you say ‘middle child syndrome!
Lauren Gershengorn - Treasurer
After retiring from the practice of law, I wanted to take a more involved role on the board. I enjoy being involved in all aspects of the organization – whether it is behind the scenes or attending any of our wonderful events. I can’t wait to save the world one JCO event at a time.
I’ll bet you didn’t know… that I hate peas!
Lauren Gross - VP Membership
I grew up in Upper Saddle River, and moved back to Saddle River almost 4 years ago. I have 4 children, Skylar age 7, Ashton age 5, and twin 2 year old girls Taylor and Madison. In between chasing my toddlers, I love to be involved in the community and schools. I work part time in my husband’s company and chauffer my kids from activity to activity! I love to travel with my family and we spend most weekends in the winter in Vermont. I am so excited to be part of the JCO and all the amazing community events they run!
I bet you didn’t know... I was a Fine Arts Major in college!
Julie Irizarry - VP Community Service
If you’re reading this, you are probably like me, a very busy mom and chauffeur! Liam, Sloane, and Nolan (especially Nolan) keep me quite busy…happy busy! Besides being their mom, nothing makes me feel more complete in life than helping others. The JCO has become a huge part of my life because of this. What an amazing organization to be part of with the best group of women who obviously feel the same way that I do.
I’ll bet you didn’t know… that my favorite movie is The Jazz Singer.
Donna Kotz - VP Publicity
I grew up in neighboring Rockland County and focused most of my career on business development. Currently, I am a full-time mom and reside in Upper Saddle River, NJ. I love doing yoga and going for outdoor walks/jogs. I was convinced that I wanted to be a part of the JCO several years ago after seeing the organization’s hard work come to fruition at the Make-a-Wish luncheon. It continues to be my favorite JCO Event!
I’ll bet you didn’t know… that I interned at the White House during college.
Milana Lieberman - Secretary
I am a “retired” kindergarten teacher. I moved to Upper Saddle River a few years ago and wanted to get involved and meet some people. I was lucky enough to have wonderful neighbors that invited me to a couple of JCO events. I was intrigued and wanted to become part of such a great organization! I’m excited to be on the board for a third year.
I’ll bet you didn’t know… that I hide candy from my kids so I don’t have to share it.
Rachel Shamash - VP Rituals & Mitzvot
I find working with such an amazing group of women toward a common goal of philanthropy extremely rewarding. It is important to me to instill in my children a sense of awareness of community and helping those less fortunate – the JCO accomplishes both! In my time outside of the JCO, I enjoy spending time with my family, reading, running and working as an orthodontist.
I’ll bet you didn’t know… that I can lick my elbow!
Sydelle Aarons - Trustee
I’m a full time mom to 2 incredible boys who keep me very busy. In my free time, I enjoy playing tennis, trying new recipes to make, and spending time with family and friends.
I’ve been to many JCO events over the past two years and I love what the organization has to offer. I’m looking forward to serving on the board.
I bet you didn’t know...I taught 2nd grade for 10 years!
Karen Begleiter - Trustee
I am a full time mom to 3 munchkins that keep me way busier than I ever imagined. Some things about me - I ignore every single person when I’m reading a good book, I cook a hot breakfast for everybody ...every single day, and I make it a point to help someone once a day (even its just loading groceries into the car for the person parked next to me.)
Now that my youngest is in preschool - I’m excited and ready to be a part of the JCO and get even busier helping others.
I’ll bet you didn’t know… I absolutely loathe shoes and my favorite thing in the world is to walk around barefoot....
Liz Rabidou - Trustee
I grew up in Montvale, went to school in Syracuse, worked in LA and NYC, and have finally settled back in Saddle River. I love to play tennis and golf, and I am an Orangetheory devotee. I’ve always enjoyed attending JCO events and giving back to the community, so when the opportunity to join the board came around, I couldn’t pass it up!
I bet you didn’t know…I worked on the last season of FRIENDS.