LIVINGSTON, NJ – On March 9, Martha Ackermann and Alan Karpas, were named Livingston UNICO's Citizens of the Year. Their volunteering efforts have helped students and families through Healthy Community Healthy Youth (HCHY), and Stuff the Bus for the local food bank. And that's just two of their projects. Ackermann is an LPS administrative assistant who works out of the high school. She helped launch the Children's Theatre of Livingston and is co-chairwoman of the PT Council’s Townwide Safety Committee. Karpas wears many hats, including making the skate park and jitney service realities in town, and working with the Livingston Education Foundation.
About Alan Karpas
Karpas served in the Army until 1964. In 1970, he and his wife Margie moved to Livingston with their sons Michael and Peter, where they remained to raise a family and serve the community. Karpas worked in manufacturing and sold apparel as promotional products by putting logos on shirts and other items. His expertise in the workplace was to turn around troubled companies and start up new companies. He uses this expertise to help Livingston.
In 2003, Karpas met Mayor Steve Santola and was invited to help start up and later head up the Vision 20/20 committee.
“He has greatly expanded its reach in just 10 years,” said Branchi.
In addition to Vision 20/20, Karpas created the Livingston Express Shuttle and manages it for the Township. And, for six years he has served as the Vice President of the Administration Committee for the United Way of NJ.
About Martha Ackermann
Ackermann also has a long-standing history of commitment to the Township of Livingston. She has traveled the world extensively and has transferred her creative skills to volunteerism in the community. Her husband, Bill, is often by her side assisting on many of her projects.
Ackermann said she moved to Livingston because of the school system's excellent reputation and that her proudest accomplishments are her children: Jeffrey, Jill and Christine—three proud graduates of the Livingston Public Schools who are now college students.
As a resident of Livingston since 1986, Ackerman has immersed herself in activities that involve children. She is employed at the Livingston High School, as an administrative assistant to the Curriculum Supervisors and can often be seen with her camera in tow as a freelance writer and photographer for the West Essex Tribune.
Ackermann has served as a co-chairperson of the PT Council’s Town-wide Safety Committee for more than seventeen years. She said that she has a passion for the safety of Livingston’s youth that has resulted in her working with a variety of organizations and municipal departments to ensure safety as a priority.
In addition, Ackermann is a founding member, and is the current Secretary for the HCHY initiative of Livingston, a collaborative partnership between youth and adults creating a community where all young people thrive.
She has also served on the Livingston Board of Education’s Long-Range Planning Committee’s Redistricting Subcommittee, is an active member of the School District Budget Task Force, and is past President of the PTA.
And, Ackermann is also a founding member and the Vice President of the Children’s Theatre of Livingston, a volunteer organization that allows children the opportunity of experiencing every aspect of the theatrical process—from acting and set design to lighting and backstage crew.
Ackermann also enhances her interest in the arts as a member of the Arts Council of Livingston, where she served as president for three years and is now the secretary.
To read more about the Awards and winners, click here.