CEO of Shore Creative Named President of HR Organization

Posted on November 4, 2019 By

Michael Ciavolino, Oceanport, the CEO of Shore Creative Group, Long Branch, has been named the president of Jersey Shore Association for Human Resources (JSAHR), for a two-year term.

Ciavolino, who has more than 30 years of experience in recruitment branding and marketing on a national level*, has conducted symposiums and workshops for HR leaders on such topics as employer branding and recruitment marketing, and has spoken at the Garden State SHRM (Society for Human Resource Management) and at annual conferences for National Association for Health Care Recruitment.

He is the author of a weekly blog dedicated to health care recruitment. He also co-hosts The Talent Brand Show, a weekly podcast dedicated to health care recruitment and talent acquisition for hospitals and health systems. (

Ciavolino said, “I’m excited and honored to have the opportunity to lead the Jersey Shore Association for Human Resources. Each month, our goal is to provide the best educational programming and the most up-to-date information to help our members learn, grow, and thrive in their role as HR professionals.”

Ciavolino earned his B.A. in communications from William Patterson University. He serves on the board of NJ Association for Health Care Recruitment; and is a member of the National Association for Health Care Recruitment, SHRM, MODC (Monmouth Ocean Development Council), EMACC (Eastern Monmouth Area Chamber of Commerce, and CRA (Corporate Resource Alliance).

He and his wife Laura are parents of 14-year-old triplets.

*As Vice President, Client Services, at several regional advertising agencies, Ciavolino worked developing and managing employer brands, recruitment strategies, and campaigns for local, regional, and national brands, such as Nabisco, Boston Scientific, Cahners Publishing, IBM, and more.


Odyssey International to Honor 2019 Business Excellence Award Winners

Posted on November 1, 2019 By

Odyssey International Productions, Rahway, a 501(c)(3) organization that recognizes the efforts and accomplishments of small-business owners, individuals, and organizations throughout New Jersey who have contributed significantly to the development of their communities, has announced the winners of its 20th annual Awards of Excellence. The award ceremony will take place November 22, 2019, at 6:00 p.m., in the Robert Treat Hotel, 50 Park Place, Newark, N.J.

M. Persia Oliver, founder of Odyssey International Productions, now celebrating its 20th year, said, “This event is designed to bring influential business leaders, entrepreneurs, and politicians together to create opportunities for business growth and development. Through this event, Odyssey recognizes companies and individuals who have made substantial, outstanding contributions to their community that would not ordinarily receive recognition.”

The 2019 honorees include Carlos Medina, President and CEO, Statewide Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of NJ, who will receive the Lifetime Achievement Award; Alan K. Sparn, Senior VP, Plaza Construction LLC, who will receive the Green Diamond Special Recognition Award; the Outstanding Achievement Award will be presented to Dr. Norma Rae, Medical Director of Women’s Services at Saint Michael’s Medical Center; and Zoma Terrell, 96 years old, will receive the Legendary Award.

Community Service awards will be presented to Nickie Alston, Founder, A Sun Star; Jim Wood, Publisher, Minority Commerce Weekly; Jessica Brown, President, The CollegeGurl Foundation; Jodi Grinwald and Melissa Grinwald, President and CEO, Zzak G. Applaud Our Kids Foundation Inc.; and Cristina Tone, Assistant Director, Neighborhood Help Center, New Jersey Community Development Corporation.

Fareeda Harmon Stokes, Harkes Realty & Associates; Chrystal Anderson, Franchise Owner/Travel Designer, Cruise Planners; Valeria Aloe, Founder and President, AlphaQuest Consulting; and D’Ann Ricketts, Principal Owner, Barden Contracting Services; will be recognized as Entrepreneurs of the Year. Brielle Lewis, Associate Manager of Insights and Analytics, Prudential’s International Insurance Operation (PII) will receive the Trail Blazer Award.

Business Excellence awards will be presented to Thomas E Armstrong, President, ATA Consulting LLC; Karina Jimenez Belen, Manager, Blue to You Consumer Markets, Horizon BCBSNJ; Paula Y. London, Certification Analyst, Port Authority of New York & New Jersey; Socorro Vallejo, VP and Controller, NMSDC (National Minority Supplier Development Council) Business Consortium Fund, Inc.; and Georgiana P. Williams, Associate Director, Corporate Services, New York & New Jersey Minority Supplier Development Council.

In honor of the late Rita L. Owens, an Odyssey guest host and recipient of the Odyssey 2011 Lifetime Achievement Award, the board of Odyssey has established the Rita L. Owens Humanitarian Achievement Award.

M. Persia Oliver said, “As the part of our historic 20th year this November, we will be paying tribute in remembrance of the mark Rita left in the hearts and minds of Odyssey.”

For more information, tickets, sponsorships, or ads, visit or contact M. Persia Oliver, 732-381-3003. Visit for sponsorships and to view past winners.

About Odyssey International Productions: Odyssey International Productions, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization founded by M. Persia Oliver, has been recognizing the efforts and accomplishments of phenomenal individuals and organizations for their outstanding business and community service contributions for 20 years. Among other ideals, the mission of Odyssey is to provide recipients with a sense of appreciation and provide a platform for small businesses to network with corporations to gain additional exposure. Oliver was named one of the Top 25 Leading Woman Entrepreneurs of New Jersey by the organization Leading Women Entrepreneurs and Business Owners and was identified as one of the Top 25 Women in Power Impacting Diversity by Diversity Plus Magazine.

Odyssey International Productions focuses on communities, neighborhoods and economies through informative and empowering events, seminars and fundraisers. Odyssey has also hosted several events to raise community awareness, such as a Season of Giving holiday party for underprivileged families that includes a home-cooked meal, books, toys, bikes, clothing and photos with Santa; a Tie-A-Tie Drive to not only teach young men how to tie a tie, but to teach them about professionalism; and a Back-to-School Backpack drive. For more information, visit Odyssey International Productions, 103 West Main Street, Rahway, NJ 07065. Phone: (732) 381-3003; Fax: (732) 388-7078;


Preferred Home Health Care Aides Receive Awards

Posted on October 31, 2019 By

Certified Home Health Aides (CHHA) from Preferred Home Health Care & Nursing Services (PHHC), Eatontown, a company that provides home care for individuals in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Delaware, received Home Health Aide of the Year awards this October at the 2019 Home Health Aide Recognition Day, sponsored by the Home Care & Hospice Association of N.J., at Branches Catering, 123 Monmouth Road, West Long Branch, NJ 07764.

The Home Health Aide of the Year is awarded to CHHAs who have demonstrated excellence, leadership, and compassion throughout their careers at their individual office locations. The CHHAs of the Year from Preferred are Magdaline Johnson of Hamilton from Preferred’s Robbinsville office; Debbie Arrozola, Nutley, Elmwood Park office; Shante Brockington, Sicklerville, Mount Laurel office; Guybonze Desinor, Eatontown, Neptune office; Robin Gavin, Lakewood, Toms River office; Bernieriz Collazo, Linden, North Brunswick office; and Myriam Lubin, Galloway, Galloway office.

Jonathan Herman, chief operating officer of PHHC, said, “Our hard-working and caring home health aides represent Preferred so well in the community and we are very proud of them for the quality care they provide to many clients and families in need.”

Each honoree received an award and a keepsake book with tributes about the contributions home health aides make to the care and safety of their clients.

Home health aides provide support and personal services, such as helping clients with bathing, dressing, and eating. They adhere to professional standards and maintain a safe, secure, and healthy client environment by following federal, state, and local requirements.
For more information about Preferred Home Health Care & Nursing Services, contact Lisa Gallicchio, director of community relations, at 732-840-5566.
About Preferred Home Health Care & Nursing Services, Inc.: Preferred Home Health Care & Nursing Services (PHHC), Inc., Eatontown, N.J., is accredited by CHAP (Community Health Accreditation Partner), an accrediting organization for the home health care industry. Preferred works collaboratively with physicians, hospitals, nursing homes, and facilities to ensure a smooth transition to one’s home.

PHHC has 15 locations. New Jersey locations include corporate headquarters in Eatontown; and branches in Elmwood Park; Galloway; Jersey City; Mt. Laurel; Neptune; North Brunswick; Robbinsville; South Orange; and Toms River. Pennsylvania locations include Allentown, Bala Cynwyd, Bensalem, and Pittsburgh. Delaware location: Claymont. Visit Preferred at for more information.


In Case of Rain, Enjoy Lakewood’s Halloween Fun Festival and Parade in the Community Center

Posted on October 28, 2019 By

Enjoy the Halloween Fun Festival and Parade for Lakewood residents only, ages 1 to 12, on Thursday, October 31, 2019, at the Lakewood Town Square, Clifton Avenue and Third Street, Lakewood, from 4:00 to 7:00 p.m. UNLESS it rains! In case of rain, Lakewood’s Halloween event will take place in the Lakewood Community Center, 20 Fourth Street, the corner of Princeton Avenue and Fourth Street.

The Lakewood Township Committee in conjunction with the Lakewood Police Department, the Lakewood Fire Department, the Lakewood EMTs, and the Lakewood Recreation Department are looking forward to offering many free Halloween the treats, including candy, face painting, music by D.J. Jimmy Givens, pumpkin painting, and a costume parade. Everything is free.

Remember the rain site has been changed to the Lakewood Community Center, 20 Fourth Street. For more information, call the Lakewood Recreation Department at 732-905-3405 or visit

The Santa Parade take place Saturday, December 14 at 1:00 p.m. in Lakewood Town Square.


CHEMED Is Offering FREE Tdap Shots for Pregnant Women November 6

Posted on October 28, 2019 By

The Center for Health Education, Medicine and Dentistry (CHEMED), a federally qualified health care center, 1771 Madison Avenue, Lakewood, N.J., is offering free Tdap shots at CHEMED for all pregnant women whether or not they are CHEMED patients on November 6 from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. No appointment is necessary.

The Tdap vaccine protects a baby against whooping cough, a serious disease that can be deadly for babies. Tdap is estimated to have saved over 500,000 lives alone in 2002.

The CDC recommends pregnant women get the whooping cough vaccine between 27 and 36 weeks of each pregnancy, preferably during the earlier part of this time period. Although the shot is so important for babies’ health, many women are not getting it for such reasons as it is too difficult to find a place that offers the shot or problems scheduling an appointment.

When the Women’s Health staff at CHEMED realized that many OBGYNs in the area do not offer the Tdap shot in-house, they decided to make free Tdap shots available.

According to Tali Lebowitz, manager of CHEMED’s Women’s Health Department, “The process at CHEMED is easy and quick. We also use the opportunity to educate the pregnant women about the importance of vaccinating in general and following the CDC recommended immunization schedule for their babies once they are born. Each woman gets a giveaway, educational materials, and enjoys some healthy snacks. We believe in making the pregnancy process as easy and pleasant as possible.”

As a continuing public health service, Tdap vaccines will also be offered at CHEMED on December 4 and January 8. For more information about this program, vaccinations, contact Nurse Susan Grill-Levy, outreach coordinator, at 732-364-6666 Ext. 8502 or sgrill-levy@chemedhealth. org.

About CHEMED: CHEMED provides comprehensive health and medical services, such as internal medicine, pediatrics, behavioral health, and dentistry, women’s health, radiology, pharmacy, radiology, geriatrics, among other services, all in one building. Uninsured and underinsured patients will be seen on a sliding-fee scale. CHEMED
has been recognized at the highest level as a Patient Centered Medical Home (PCMH) by the National Council on Quality Assurance (NCQA). To make an appointment, call 732-364-6666.


2019 Leaf Pickup Schedule in Lakewood Township

Posted on October 24, 2019 By

Almost everyone loves to look at the beautiful colors of fall leaves. Although they are wonderful when they are on the trees, leaves become a problem when they pile up on the ground. The Lakewood Department of Public Works (DPW), however, will help pick up all those fallen leaves according to the zone in which residents live.

If your normal trash and recycling pick-up is Monday, you are in Zone 1; Tuesday is Zone 2; Wednesday is Zone 3, and Thursday is Zone 4. The weekends and holidays are not listed as of now; but as the leaves fall and more residents starting putting them out, the Lakewood DPW will put crews out at those times. Leaf season officially ends Tuesday, December 31.

Some things to remember about those leaves: Number 1 – Know your Zone and do not call for leaf pickup. Number 2 – Do NOT put leaves in bags! Also do not put leaf piles near your bulk pickup items. Number 3 – As a safety precaution, rake the leaves in a neat pile away from storm drains and curb corners. Number 4 – Divide your pick up into three separate categories – leaves, brush, logs— because separate trucks pick up different items Number 5 – Be sure no branches are attached to those leaves. Brush is another term for branches. To get rid of brush, cut the branches into four-foot lengths and place them separate from the leaves. Branches that are larger than four feet in length and/or four inches in diameter are considered logs. The township does not and cannot pick up logs…sorry.

For more information, call the Department of Public works at 732-905-3405.


Biannual JSAHR Legal Seminar – 2019 Hot Issues in Employment Law

Posted on October 24, 2019 By

The Jersey Shore Association for Human Resources (JSAHR) is hosting a half-day legal interactive seminar presented by the employment law firm of Jackson Lewis that will examine significant employment law issues, impacting organizations and human resource professionals, including recent developments.

The seminar led by attorneys Richard Cino, David Islinger, Bianca Olivadoti, and Luke Breslin is Thursday, November 14, 2019, 9:00 a.m. to noon in the Garden Room of Monmouth Park Racetrack, 175 Oceanport Avenue, Oceanport, N.J.

The presentation will include such topics Arbitration Agreements and Confidentiality Provisions: Issues with FAA preemption and the New Restrictions under S-121; Drug Testing and Medical Marijuana, including discussion on the Carriage House Decision & CBD; Managing Workplace Absences: Interplay with Leave Laws and Paid Benefits Laws; Effective Supervisor Documentation; Employer’s Obligation to Keep Its Employees Safe from Third-Parties; Discussion of New Overtime Regulations; Review of Report Issued by Governor Murphy’s Taskforce on Employee Classification; and New Jersey’s Minimum Wage Hike. A question and answer session is included.

The registration fee, which includes breakfast and networking from 7:45 to 9:00 a.m., is $60 for JSAHR members; $90 for non-members; $50 for those in-transition and JSAHR guests; and $10 for students with valid ID. A $10 fee will be added for walk-ins.

Register online at or email Christine Higgins at or call JSAHR at 732-701-7155. This program is pending 3 HRCI (Human Resource Certification Institute) and SHRM recertification credits. JSAHR is recognized by SHRM to offer Professional Development Credits.

About Jackson Lewis, P.C.: Jackson Lewis P.C. is among the largest firms in the country dedicated to representing management in labor, employment and benefits law, and related litigation. With 58 offices across the country, the firm has both a national perspective and keen understanding of the nuances of regional business environments. Jackson Lewis represents employers before state and federal courts on a wide range of issues, including discrimination, wrongful discharge, retaliation, whistleblower, health, safety, wage,/hour, pension, and benefits. The firm’s attorneys negotiate collective bargaining before the NLRB, OSHA, and other federal and state agencies.


N.J. Health Care Networking Group to Meet November 13

Posted on October 21, 2019 By

The monthly meeting of N.J. Health Care Networking Group, a free organization for anyone in the health care industry, including those who provide ancillary products and services, is Wednesday, November 13, 2019, from 8:30 to 10:30 a.m. at The Oscar and Ella Wilf Campus for Senior Living, 350 Dermott Lane, Somerset, NJ 08873.

The N.J. Health Care Networking Group provides an opportunity to build relationships among health care professionals, market events, and promote business. Membership is free; however, register to take advantage of member benefits, such as posting to N.J. Health Care Networking Group’s website all health care and marketing events, training information, employment listings, and access to a member directory.

Host sites are being planned now for 2020. If you or your company are interested in hosting a meeting, visit

For more information about N.J. Health Care Networking Group, contact Lisa Gallicchio, director of community relations for Preferred Home Health Care & Nursing Services, Eatontown, at, call 732-547-9886, or visit for the monthly location and member events. Meetings take place in a different New Jersey county each month.


Lakewood Chamber Announces 2019 Honorees for Citizen of the Year

Posted on October 21, 2019 By

The Lakewood Chamber of Commerce has announced the winners of the 2019 Citizen of the Year Awards. Lakewood’s most outstanding citizens and business honorees will be recognized at the 47th annual Citizen of the Year Awards reception, Thursday, November 7, 2019, from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m., Eagle Ridge Golf Club, 2 Augusta Boulevard, Lakewood, N.J.

The 2019 Citizen of the Year honorees, who have made significant contributions to the growth and well-being of Lakewood and its surrounding region, are Mike Saccomano, Director of the Building Department of Lakewood Township; Jack Mallon, Chairman, and Daniel Regenye, Public Health Coordinator, Ocean County Board of Health; Ira Hoberman, Chairman, and Donald Mindiak, CEO, First Commerce Bank; Mike McNeil, Executive Director of “STEPS” (Solutions to End Poverty Soon); and Harrison Pfeffer and Jay Sokol, Proprietors of Bagel King.

Tickets cost $125.00 per person and include an hour and a half premium open bar, dinner, dessert and coffee. Sponsorship opportunities range from $750 to $1,800; journal ads range from $200.00 to $500.00. For tickets or more information, contact the Chamber Office at 732-363-0012 or Also visit


Special Event Nov. 1 to Raise Funds for Free Performing Arts Lessons for Children

Posted on October 15, 2019 By

The Zzak G. Applaud Our Kids Foundation, a 501 (c)(3) non-profit organization, was created by Jodi and Melissa Grinwald to provide free ongoing vocal, dance, acting, and instrumental music lessons for children, ages 7-18, in Ocean and Monmouth counties, making children’s dreams a reality when the parents of many talented children simply cannot afford lessons for their children.
To raise funds for the free lessons, The Zzak G. Applaud Our Kids Foundation is holding its 2nd Annual Step into the Spotlight Soiree and Talent Competition, Friday, November 1, 2019, at 7:00 p.m. at Jack Baker’s Lobster Shanty, 83 Channel Drive, Point Pleasant, NJ 08742. Among other supporters, the Jay and Linda Grunin Foundation and Investors Bank are this year’s sponsors.

Last year, 148 people attended this event, which provided 30 full-year scholarships for children. Because some children do not have the transportation they need to get to lessons at a studio, Applaud Our Kids has also started a community outreach program to fund teachers who will go to after-school community programs and teach dance, acting, instrumental music, or vocal instruction. If a student needs supplies, such as dance shoes or instruments, the foundation makes every effort to provide these items depending on available funding.

For the major impact they have had in helping children and the Foundation in its first two years, Heather Barberi, executive director of the Jay and Linda Grunin Foundation will be honored with the 2019 Spotlight on Kindness; Shawn Michaels and Sue Moll from Townsquare Media’s Ocean County Breakfast Show on 92.7 WOBM FM will receive the 2019 Media Spotlight; and Investors Bank will receive the 2019 Corporate Spotlight.

Tickets are $115 each and include dinner, a two-hour open bar, a silent auction, dancing, and talent competitions. Call 732-773-8970 or email for sponsorships, digital ad opportunities, tickets, or more information. To purchase tickets online visit

For more information, email visit or call 848.333.2819. Donations can be mailed to Zzak G. Applaud Our Kids Foundation Inc., P.O. BOX 994, Barnegat, NJ 08005.

How Applaud Our Kids Began: Jodi and Melissa Grinwald’s dad loved to sing; but when he was a child, no one could pay for young Zzak Grinwald to take voice lessons. Finally, he took his first lesson when he was in his 30s. His teacher said he had the voice of an operatic tenor! He sang, he wrote music, and he composed songs, and was passionate about the performing arts until his death in 2015 at age 68 from ALS. To honor his legacy, his daughters created the Zzak G. Applaud Our Kids Foundation in 2017.

Some students receiving lessons are dealing with difficult situations, such as a loss of a parent among other problems. The only constant they have in their life is the lessons Applaud Our Kids funds. Jodi Grinwald said, “We are a kids-helping-kids organization. The Applaud Our Kids Performance Group performs at corporate and nonprofit events to bring awareness about how important the performing arts are to kids. These talented kids help fundraise for their peers who want to take lessons just like them.”
Some facts: Students who take four years of arts and music classes average almost 100 points higher on their SAT scores than students who take only one-half year or less. Low-income students who are highly engaged in the arts are twice as likely to graduate college as their peers with no arts education. Arts students are more likely to attend secondary schools than those who do not participate in the arts. Low-income students who are highly engaged in the arts are twice as likely to graduate college as their peers with no arts education.

Visit for more information about the Foundation. Visit Facebook at