PIANJ elects Long Branch man to board of directors

Atlantic City —The Professional Insurance Agents of New Jersey elected five independent insurance agents from around the state to its board of directors, at the association’s annual business meeting at Harrah’s in Atlantic City.

Newly elected to serve on the board for a three-year term expiring in 2021 was Aaron Levine, CIC, of Long Branch.

Levine is owner of L G Insurance Agency in Long Branch.

Active in PIANJ, Levine is immediate past president of NJYIP. He also is the YIP liaison for PIANJ’s Bait & Switch and Legislative/Business Issues Committees. Levine also is the NJYIP liaison to the PIANJ Political Action Committee.

The following individuals were re-elected to serve for a three-year term, expiring in 2021:

Roger C. Butler, CIC, of Cinnamonson. Butler is vice president of The Barclay Group in Riverton. Active in PIANJ, Butler will serve as the Business Issues chairperson of the Legislative/Business Issues Committee for 2018-19.

Michael DeStasio Jr., of Iselin. DeStasio is senior vice president of Assured Partners of N.J. in Cranford. An active member of the association, DeStasio will serve as treasurer of PIANJ in 2017-18 and served as secretary in 2016-17. He also is a member of the Legislative/Business Issues and Executive/Budget & Finance committees. DeStasio also is a member of the PIANJ Political Action Committee, serving as its treasurer. He also is a member of PIANJ’s Carrier Advisory Council.

Beth Frederickson, CPIA, of N. Caldwell, N.J. Frederickson is the agency principal of Voluntary Risk Managers, dba bethellenfrederickson,llc of Fairfield, N.J. As an active member of PIANJ, Frederickson is Conference/Education chairperson of the Membership Services/Programs Committee.

Andrew C. Harris Jr., CIC, AAI, of Jackson Township. Harris is president of Liberty Insurance Associates Inc., in Millstone Township. Active in the association, Harris is Legislative/Regulatory chairperson of the Legislative Business Issues Committee and is a member of the NJ Agents Justice Task Force. He also is co-chair of the Special Olympics Golf Committee and is a director for the New Jersey Young Insurance Professionals, an organization dedicated to the professional and personal growth of newcomers to the insurance industry. It is an affiliate of PIANJ.

Steven C. Radespiel, CIC, of Hillsdale. Radespiel is president of The Insurance Center of North Jersey Inc. Radespiel is an active member of PIANJ, serving as vice president of the association for 2017-19. He also is vice president of the Legislative/Business Issues Committee and is a member of the Bait & Switch, Executive/Budget & Finance and PIANJ Political Action Committees. He also is a member of the Carrier Advisory Council and is an ex-officio member of the association’s Northeast Advisory Council.

PIANJ is a trade association representing professional, independent insurance agencies, brokerages and their employees throughout the state.


Where ARE All the Employees? Boost Your Competitive Edge with a Webinar on Recruitment Marketing

Because unemployment rates are at an all-time low, finding talent to fill open positions is becoming more and more challenging.

Michael Ciavolino, founder and CEO of Shore Creative Group,

Learn the insider’s scoop on recruitment marketing Thursday, June 21 at 1:00 p.m. during the free Webinar Boost Your Competitive Edge with Recruitment Marketing. Sign up at https://drsabrina.easywebinar.live/registration-recruitment-marketing.

Dr. Sabrina Starling, The Business Psychologist ™ and author of How to Hire the Best series, will be interviewing Mike Ciavolino, founder and CEO of Shore Creative Group, Long Branch, an award-winning marketing agency.

Having spent more than 30 years in the marketing industry, Ciavolino has a proven record of developing successful recruitment advertising campaigns, connecting employers with the right candidates, and making the hiring process easier for HR/Talent Acquisition. He is a VP of JSAHR (Jersey Shore Assn of Human Resources; and a board member of the Garden State Council of SHRNM and the NJ Association of Healthcare Recruiters.

Ciavolino and Dr. Starling will discuss What is Recruitment Marketing? Should YOU be doing Recruitment Marketing? And strategies that businesses can immediately implement to attract top-performing team members.

About Shore Creative Group and Mike Ciavolino: Shore Creative Group (shorecreativegroup.com) and Mike Ciavolino, its Founder, provide a full spectrum of strategic digital, social, print and branding campaigns for attracting and retaining top talent. Shore Creative Group is at 176 Broadway, Suite B, Long Branch, N.J.

About Dr. Sabrina Starling: Sabrina Starling, The Business Psychologist™ and author of the How to Hire the Best series is the founder of Tap the Potential, which specializes in transforming small businesses into highly profitable, Great Places to Work!

Dr. Sabrina’s How to Hire the Best series grew from her desire to solve the toughest hiring challenges interfering with her clients’ growth and profitability. What sprang from her experience working with entrepreneurs in rural areas catapulted her into becoming the world’s leading expert in attracting top talent in small businesses — no matter what hiring challenges those businesses are facing — and earned Tap the Potential’s reputation as the go-to resource for entrepreneurs committed to creating thriving coaching cultures, while tapping team members’ strengths. With her background in psychology, and years of driving profit in small business, Dr. Starling knows what it takes to find, keep and get exceptional performance out of your biggest investment—your team members.

Two found dead in city

By Neil Schulman

Long Branch — Two people were found dead at an Ocean Boulevard residence.


A recent photo of Jerry Scarano in front of his home on Ocean Blvd., Long Branch.

The Long Branch Police Department reported that on Tuesday night, officers responded to a call for service to check the wellbeing of a person at the residence.


Rita Morano, a long-time friend of Scorano, who she sees almost every day, had not heard from him so she got someone to drive past his Ocean Boulevard home early in the morning. Although it was dark outside, all the lights were on, which prompted her to call the Long Branch Police Department to conduct a welfare check.

That’s when police discovered two deceased people.

Police said that the two were known to each other, and there is no danger to the community.

Because the investigation involves dead bodies, the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office is investigating along with the Detective Bureau from the Long Branch Police Department.

While not officially confirmed, multiple sources have told The Link News that one of the individuals is Gerald “Jerry” Scarano, the owner of the residence where police were called.

Scarano, a Realtor, is known around the city. He could often be seen Long Branch Council meetings, discussing ways he thought the city could be made safer, improve its appearance, or advocating that the meetings be televised. He was involved in Asbury Park politics as well.

The Link has also been told that the other deceased person was also residing at the property.

Investigators say they believe the situation is an isolated incident.

“Monmouth County Prosecutor Christopher J. Gramiccioni and Long Branch Police Department Chief Jason Roebuck wanted to ensure residents and others in the area that this is an isolated incident and there is no reason to be alarmed and there is no further threat to the public,” said a statement from the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office.

As of press time, officials had not released any more information.


Monmouth County Park System fishing derby

Calling all anglers!  The Monmouth County Park System is hosting its Freshwater Fishing Derby on Saturday & Sunday, June 16 & 17.

Open to both beginner and experienced anglers, the event also features free fishing clinics.  The fun starts on Saturday, June 16 at the Manasquan Reservoir in Howell, with a hands-on fishing clinic from 12:30-1:30 p.m. During the clinic, Park System staff will cover how to cast and rig and will answer questions.  Then the fishing derby will be held from 2-5 p.m. On Sunday, June 17, the action moves to Turkey Swamp Park, Freehold. Once again a free hands-on fishing clinic will be held from 12:30-1:30 p.m., followed by the fishing derby from 2-5 p.m.

Prizes will be awarded each day for the longest fish in three different categories. Derby rules provided upon registration.  Anglers can bring their own fishing pole or rent one for $5.  The cost of each day of the fishing derby is $25 per family of four or $8 per person.  A container of worms is included with each registration.  Pre-registration is suggested; walk-ins are welcome.  Onsite registration is cash or check only.

To learn more about the Freshwater Fishing Derby or to register, please visit www.MonmouthCountyParks.com or call the Park System at 732-842-4000. For persons with hearing impairment, the Park System TTY/TDD number is 711. The Monmouth County Park System, created in 1960 by the Monmouth County Board of Chosen Freeholders, is Monmouth County’s Open Space, Parks, and Recreation agency.

Active shooter presentation

Long Branch — The Long Branch Citizens Police Academy Alumni are sponsoring an Active Shooter presentation on June 16, at 10:00 am.
It will be hosted by the First Reformed Church of Long Branch (Pastor Marisol Malloy), 650 Broadway.

This is a free class for the churches, businesses, parents, security agencies and community organizations.

“We want our community to be Pro-Active, not Re-Active in case of an active shooter in our place of worship or place of business,” says Rev. Sandra Gonzalez, President of the Long Branch Citizens Police Academy Alumni.

The presentation will explain how to respond in an active shooter situation.
RSVP by June 12 to Lbc paalumni@aol.com or call Pastor Malloy at the First Reformed Church.

For more information, contact Malloy 732-870-0809, or Gonzalez 732-267-6423 or Email: Lbc paalumni@aol.com.

Whale Pond Brook trail progress discussed

Members of the Whale Pond Brook Watershed Association will report on their progress in developing a six-mile hiking/nature trail that they, local residents, students, and community leaders are developing from Long Branch to Tinton Falls.

The public meeting will begin 6 p.m., Monday, June 25 at Brookdale Community College (BCC), Lincroft.

The talk — open to the public — includes the BCC Environmental Club and students, the Jersey Shore (Monmouth) Sierra Group, and other environmental organizations.
Faith Teitelbaum, a founding member of the association and co-chair of the Jersey Shore Sierra’s conservation committee, will be the key speaker. The association’s goal is to restore the eroded banks and water quality in the Whale Pond Brook watershed and be able to walk along a six-mile suburban greenway from the brook’s source in Tinton Falls all the way to the ocean.

The trail includes historic sites such as the 100-year-old Ross Island stone hut,  the old Brinley grist mill site, the Woodrow Wilson Hall at Monmouth University and the beautiful Takanassee Lake in Long Branch.

The east-west trail would link the ocean beach and Lake Takanassee Park at Ocean Avenue in Long Branch, Weltz Park and  Cranberry Creek (Whale Pond Brook) at Rt. 35  in Eatontown, and Whale Pond Brook Preserve at Rt.18 in Tinton Falls. It would then end just east of the Garden State Parkway.

The presentation, part of BCC’s “Science Monday” environmental lectures, is hosted by BCC’s Environmental Club to encourage students to be involved in statewide and national debates on the importance of strong environmental protections.

A pizza and subs buffet begins at 6 p.m. in Warner Student Life Center (SLC) Twin Lights Rooms I and II, and the presentation begins at 6:30 p.m.

Use parking lot 7 on the campus. or lots 5 or 6 if it is full. ­

The Axelrod Performing Arts Center and The Jewish Heritage Museum Present Ninth Annual Israel Film Festival

The Axelrod Performing Arts Center’s highly successful Israel Film Festival enters its ninth year in 2018.

Ori Pfeffer, star of The Testament

Under the leadership of film enthusiast Toby Shylit Mack, the festival presents a dozen international films that celebrate the Jewish experience, most of which have received awards at major film festivals around the world. In partnership with The Jewish Heritage Museum of Monmouth County, the week-long festival is will be presented from July 12 to July 18, 2018. Admission is $10 per film, and $40 for the series of five films.

This program is made possible with support from The Jewish Federation in the Heart of New Jersey.

The films that will be shown begin on Thursday, July 12, 2018 at 7 PM with The Wedding Plan. Exhausted by single life at 32, spirited bride-to-be Michal (Noa Kooler) is eager for the comfort and companionship of marriage. Then, her fiancé dumps her one month before their wedding. Devastated but undeterred, she decides to keep her wedding date, leaving it to fate to provide a suitable groom.

Next, on Sunday, July 15, 2018 at 2 PM will be The Testament. Yoel, a senior Holocaust researcher, is in the midst of a legal battle with powerful forces in Austria, concerning a brutal massacre of Jews that took place toward the end of WWII in the village of Lensdorf.

​While investigating the incident Yoel examines classified testimonies of Holocaust survivors, and to his shock and surprise, he finds a testimony given by his mother, a testimony he didn’t know existed. As a historian with an unshakeable commitment to the truth, he decides to continue his investigations even at the cost of ruining his personal and professional life.

The following film, on Monday, July 16, 2018 at 7 PM will be The Cakemaker. Tomas, a young and talented German baker, is having an affair with Oren, an Israeli married man who dies in a car crash. Thomas travels to Jerusalem seeking answers. Keeping his secret for himself, he starts working for Anat, his lover’s widow, who owns a small café. Although not fully kosher and despised by the religious, his delicious cakes turn the place into a city attraction. Finding himself involved in Anat’s life in a way far beyond his anticipation, Thomas will stretch his lie to a point of no return.

The fourth film, on Tuesday, July 17, 2018 at 7 PM will be Ben Gurion, Epilogue. In the great depths of the archive, six hours of interview footage was discovered of one of modern history’s greatest leaders- David Ben-Gurion. It is 1968 and he is 82 years old, five years before his death. He lives in his secluded home in the desert, removed from all political discourse, which allows him a hindsight perspective on the Zionist enterprise. Ben-Gurion’s introspective soul searching is the focus of this film, and his clear voice provides a surprising vision for today’s crucial decisions and the future of Israel.

The final film, on Wednesday, July 18, 2018 at 2 PM will be Israeli Love Story. Based on the true story of theatre director and actress Prima Gary, an Israeli Love Story tells a passionate story of love and independence. Set in pre-state Palestine Eli (Aviv Alush from The Women’s Balcony) and Margalit (Adi Beilski) are torn between their love for one another and where they see their own futures in the Jewish state. In the budding theatre world of Tel Aviv and the kibbutzim, Margalit finds her place in the spotlight. Eli, while planning to marry Margalit, is drawn deeper into the armed struggle for Jewish independence from the British.

For more information or to make a paid reservation (non-refundable), call the Museum at 732-252-6990, or visit www.jhmomc.org. The Jewish Heritage Museum is located in the Mounts Corner Shopping Center, at 310 Mounts Corner Drive Freehold, NJ, at the corner of Route 537 and Wemrock Road (between the CentraState Medical Center and Freehold Raceway Mall). It is on the second floor of the historic Levi Solomon Barn. The JHMOMC is a tax-exempt organization under Section 501 (c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. The Museum is handicapped and assistive listening accessible.


A Conversation with Jon Stewart

SUN • JUNE 17 • 8PM
On Sale THURS • JUNE 7 • 12PM
Tickets: $250, $150, $99, $75 | Limit 4 tickets per billing address

Comedian Jon Stewart will participate in an onstage interview and audience Q&A on Sunday, June 17th at 8pm at the Count Basie Center for the Arts. Tickets for the event will be a benefit for the Basie Center’s capital campaign project.

“I’m happy to appear at the Basie for a great cause – the Count Basie,” Stewart said. “The expansion going on at the center is going to keep Monmouth County the center of ‘Jersey’s premier arts communities.”

Jon Stewart is one of America’s top social and comedic figures.  As the longtime host and executive producer of Comedy Central’s Emmy and Peabody award winning program, The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, he and the show won a collective 20 Primetime EMMY Awards and were nominated 56 times.  Stewart is also a New York Times best-selling author. In 2014 he wrote and directed his first feature film, Rosewater, which he also produced alongside Gigi Pritzker and Scott Rudin. Stewart currently has a first-look deal with HBO and serves as an executive producer on CBS’ Late Show with Stephen Colbert.

Stewart will take questions from a moderator, with an audience-generated Q&A session closing the evening.

“We’re honored that Jon is lending his support to the Count Basie Center,” said Adam Philipson, President and CEO, Count Basie Center for the Arts. “Proceeds from this evening will go directly towards construction of our new center. It’s impossible to express how much this means to us.  Jon’s dedication to the region, the Basie and the arts in general is invaluable.”

Announced in 2016, the Basie campaign is an ambitious, $26 million effort to expand the facility into a true, regional center for the arts. The project broke ground last fall on the west end of the Basie Center campus, which will create the Jay And Linda Grunin Arts And Education Building and house a second performance venue, space for the ever-growing Basie Performing Arts Academy, and provide upgrades to the backstage areas of the Basie’s historic, 1926 theater.  A second phase, set to begin shortly, will expand the Basie theater’s lobby, restrooms, and concessions areas, while creating a striking, glass-lined outer wall, flanked by the Stillwell-Larkin Pavilion and overlooking a new, outdoor public arts plaza.

Presented by Count Basie Center for the Arts

$500 VIP Meet & Greet Package

Limited availability
Photo with Jon Stewart
One (1) premium seat
All proceeds to benefit the Count Basie Center for the Arts

A day of celebration in Monmouth Beach

Patty Booth O’Neill
There were a few mentions of the sun attempting to peek through the clouds on Monday morning during the annual Monmouth Beach Memorial Day celebration at the Veterans’ Honor Roll on Beach Road.     

It never did peek through, but it didn’t rain either. Considering the weather recently, that was something to be thankful for.

There were 31 bricks added recently to the site located next to Wells Fargo Bank along with a sculpture of a figure in full battlefield gear. The upgrades were made by MB residents Jim Denker, John Sheeran and Al Miller just in time for the celebration.

MB Veteran’s Honor Roll (the sign) lists the names of residents who have served in the military. The upper portion lists  World War II Vets. The lower portion lists those who have served in Korea, Vietnam, Afghanistan and Iraq.

With Mayor Susan Howard, Commissioner Dave Stickle and residents looking on, MB Veteran’s Association President John Sheeran made introductions and then  turned the mike over to Marine Vet Mike Canavan. Canavan gave a little history lesson about how Memorial Day was started after the Civil War as not to forget those who had lost their lives.

“Does anyone here know which state was the first to observe Memorial Day?” It turns out Canavan had a ringer in the crowd who  quickly raised his hand. “This gentleman here?” Canavan asked.

“New York.”
“New York, excellent. What is your name?”
“Jack what?”

“Jack Canavan,” who turned out to be a very proud Mike Canavan’s grandson.

After a moment of silence Lance Corporal Matthew Gorta, USMC, Bugler, placed a wreath next to the MB Veteran’s Honor Roll, then Canavan introduced former Lt. Gov. and Blue Star Mom Kim Guadagno.

“Let us not forget to take a moment to think of, or maybe say a prayer for those military service members who have ultimately paid the price so that we can, quite frankly, stand here a free people, a free state, a free country.” Guadagno began.

She also asked to honor the thousands of Gold Star families across the United States who have lost a family member. “Such families know that freedom is not free.” She remembered the families of those who are currently serving, speaking about her  son who in the Air Force and will be deploying to South Korea in July.

From there the ceremony moved across the street to the firehouse and then at noon to the Monmouth Beach Cultural Center.

People appear unsatisfied with mall plan testimony

By Coleen Burnett
Eatontown — The series of Planning Board meetings examining the revamping of the Monmouth Mall — now being called the Heights at Monmouth — is hitting the homestretch.
The hearings began at the beginning of April. The latest session on the subject was held on June 4.

Another is scheduled for June 18. At that time, there may be one last session scheduled to discuss the issue before the final vote.

All of that is yet to be determined. But there is one thing is for sure – residents living near the Mall have grown frustrated. The same issues, such as the number of apartments and increases in traffic, have come up over and over again.

Residents say their objections are not being heard. They feel they are not being given answers to some of their questions. And they feel some of the answers they have gotten are in no way grounded in reality.

All this boiled over – at least a little bit – at the June 4 meeting.

The session led off with continuing testimony by the owner’s (Kushner Brothers and Brookfield Properties, formerly known as Rouse) traffic expert Gary W. Dean of Montville-based Dolan and Dean Consulting Engineers. One of his points was the fact that many use Grant Avenue as a shortcut. He suggested the installation of speed bumps on the road to discourage such behavior.

Dean’s remark didn’t fly very far with members of the Board.

“We just went through a whole thing of {removing} speed bumps in town. It’s probably not the best solution,” said Mayor Dennis Connelly.

“The only people who know shortcuts are the ones who use them every day… it’s only going to exacerbate the problem by putting in the 700 units,” said Wyckoff Road resident Ted Lewis.

Eatontown resident Shirley Jacobs made a point about the series of condos that are scheduled to go up in neighboring Long Branch. That project is expected to bring in up to 1,000 additional residents to the area. She doesn’t want to see the apartments built.

“This is like, overload,” she said in frustration. “They’re going to take to these highways and roads and go to the Mall.”

“Don’t give me any [crap]. Don’t tell me it’s going to save the Mall.”

Planning Board Chairman Mark Woloshin also had a few questions for the experts that, for the moment, have no answers.

The replies he got were some of the same phrases that were told to residents: “That’s out of my realm,” “let me get back to you –I don’t have that here,” or simply “I’m not sure.”

All this is scheduled to resume at another hearing June 18 at 7:30 p.m. At that time, the Mall’s owners will present their final witness, an economic planner.

A side note to all this is the still-unresolved lawsuit filed last year in Freehold. Four

Eatontown residents are claiming the board doesn’t have the jurisdiction to hear the case because the plan requires a zoning variance. The group also says that conflicts exist with three members of the board — Rich Robinson, Mark Regan, and Kevin

Gonzalez – because they all are former Borough Council members who voted for the zoning ordinance that allowed the redevelopment uses in the first place.

The case is being decided by Superior Court Judge Lisa P. Thornton.