Guttenberg’s Board of Education President Sari Zukerman is a born educator who has now also made her former vocation into a continued avocation in her retirement, in more ways than just in the professional realm. To begin, Ms. Zukerman was born in Brooklyn to loving professional parents Louis and Fannie Feldman, now deceased, and graduated from James Madison High School there in 1953. She then went on to achieve a bachelor of science degree in liberal arts in 1957 at Cornell University in Ithaca, New York, and then in 1959, she achieved a master of science degree in education at Brooklyn College/CUNY. She is still a member of the Cornell University Alumni Association, she proudly states. Ms. Zukerman further tells us that she became a member of the faculty at the College of Staten Island/CUNY, where she taught Reading and Language Arts as a profession until 2005, when she retired.
In 1981, she moved to Guttenberg at the Galaxy Towers building from Staten Island, where she was living at the time, and also joined the condominium association there, volunteering her services to her neighbors in her new living environment. Afterward, she volunteered her services at other numerous places, too, such as Englewood Hospital and Medical Center in Bergen County, and is still a volunteer there today. At the Galaxy Towers, she has since become a member of the executive council there and serves on committees, and in 2001 she was awarded a Medal of Honor for Outstanding Voluntary Services. She has also become active with the Guttenberg Democratic Party, and serves as a poll worker for the Hudson County Board of Elections, District No. 6, at the Galaxy building. In 2004, she was asked to run for a seat on the town’s Board of Education, and currently is serving her third term. Furthermore, she has been elevated by her peers to become the board president, and she just loves being back in education – her love, her passion!
Education in Guttenberg is very demanding, she states, as new programs have been instituted in Reading and Math, and they now have state-of-the-art equipment and programs in technology that are needed in today’s educational environment. Moreover, she is very busy with interviews regarding personnel, and this is very time consuming regarding board policy, and the board keeping its pulse on the municipal population and its employees at the school. Working with Mayor Gerald Drasheff has been an inspiration, she said, especially with his background as a lawyer and his legal mindset. Ms. Zukerman tells us that she has known Mayor Drasheff for at least a decade as a neighbor, and considers him a very fine public servant regarding education and policy. Ms. Zukerman presently is also a member of the New Jersey School Boards Association.
Ms. Zukerman, who compliments this columnist for spelling her last name correctly in past columns, tells us that her daughter Judy has two daughters, Suzanne and Michele, who are attending Lehigh University in Pennsylvania and the University of Maryland, respectively. The former is a senior who was recently elected to Phi Beta Kappa, and the latter is a freshman at her school. Ms. Zukerman tells us that she is very proud of her two granddaughters. She has another daughter by the name of Marjorie who currently lives in Staten Island, N.Y.
Ms. Zukerman further tells us that, in her leisure time, she is a member of the Galaxy Bridge Club and the Galaxy Gym where she performs Fast Walking exercises. As for social activities, she is very active wherever she travels, and she just loves The Green Kitchen restaurant at the Galaxy Towers building for their cuisine, any time of the day or night. She also likes to play the piano, and likes all types of music, especially classical, Jazz, and modern. For the past twelve years, she has been a member of the Metropolitan Museum of Arts in Manhattan, and attends its Lecture Series.
An avid reader, she also is an extensive world traveler, and has visited every continent except the Arctic and Antarctica, she laughs. Her next trip in the near future is planned for the Galapagos Islands off the coast of Ecuador in South America. She recently came back from Turkey, and in the spring of 2011, she is planning to go to Greece. Ms. Zukerman, who is of the Jewish faith, also tells us that, in 1988, she was a volunteer in the Israeli Army in Israel, giving to that country’s government a “gift of time,” rather than a monetary gift. Thus, all this traveling is also education in the making – new cultures, new places, new languages to learn, meeting new people, and making new friends.
Ms. Zukerman goes on to tell us that close family ties mean a lot to her, mainly because her parents were professionally-oriented, and she is professionally-oriented, and so are her daughters. Therefore, she and her daughters and grandchildren all have a commonality of thought, and therefore there is no generational gap when it comes to understanding and needing each other for advice and family concerns. Thus, she loves to spend time with her grandchildren, and also her grand-dogs, Monte and Dolly, who show their love naturally and unconditionally.
Thus Sari Zukerman, deep-seededly it is various forms of education that drives your zest for life. Keep moving forward in that direction, and All the Best!
North Bergenitesand Julian Verdegue have been named to the dean’s list at Pennsylvania State University at Philadelphia. Best wishes to you both! Meanwhile, of Secaucus was named to the dean’s list at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Upstate New York. Best wishes to you too, Mr. Rodrigo!
A funny story! Two old friends were recently brought together again after many months of not seeing each other professionally. The story goes like this… Hudson County Superintendent of Weights and Measures Roseann Fischer of Secaucus got back to her office for a meeting to find that her parking space was taken by someone else. She learns that the person who took her space was at another meeting at the facility, and went to that meeting to check out the situation. Lo and behold, it was Union City Deputy Mayor Nicholas Mastorelli who was the “parking space nabber,” to her surprise. After much laughter, Ms. Fischer gave her forgiveness to this act of “space-nabbing,” and happy days are here again. What a way for two gracious old professional friends to meet again. Ms Fischer and Mr. Mastorelli, you’re both the greatest!
United States Army Captain Robert J. Baker of Union City was deployed to Japan for overseas training by the New York Army National Guard 42nd Infantry Division for the Yama Sakura Exercise as its Operations Officer. Congratulations!
U.S. Army National Guard Private Alejandro J. Garcia has graduated from the Infantryman One Station Unit Training at Fort Benning in Columbus, Georgia. He is the son of Ledy Ponce De Leon of Union City. Congrats to you too, Private Garcia!
West New Yorkers Charles Cartagena and Matthew Vega were both named to the dean’s list at Rider University in Princeton. Leaders of Tomorrow, make us proud!
There is a new Pizzaiolo in North Hudson County, namely in the Township of Weehawken, down by The Shades area. The pizzeria is called King of Wings & Pizza, which recently had its grand opening, with flags waving! The hired help tell us that Ralphie Waleed is an owner/partner of the establishment. The pizza parlor is located on Willow Avenue across from the ExxonMobil Station & Tiger Mart coffee shop, near the Lincoln Tunnel entrance. Their Pizza Margarita is worth a trip there! Buon Appetito!

And so it goes…Until next time…See you around town…MATT.

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