WEST ORANGE, NJ — The Oranges & Maplewood Unit of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) will host its 104th Annual Freedom Fund Gala on Sunday, April 30, from noon to 5 p.m. at the Atrium Country Club, located at 609 Eagle Rock Avenue in West Orange.

This year’s theme, “We Will be Successful in our Pursuits Because our Ancestors Endured,” speaks to the 104-year legacy of service and achievement of the oldest branch in the Garden State and fifth-oldest branch in the nation.

A roster of corporate, business, civic, ecumenical and educational leaders will be honored for their exemplary career achievements and contributions.

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The honorees of distinction include: Judge Theodore Stephens, Essex County Surrogate, Gail Velox, President, Orange Education Foundation, Maurice and Daneen Cooper of The Jaguar Track Team, Elmwood United Presbyterian Church in partnership with Temple B’nai Abraham of Livingston, Sarah Jones, Manager of Government Affairs, Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of NJ and Dr. Kevin West, Superintendent, East Orange School District.  

The keynote speaker is Ryan Haygood, Esq., President/CEO of the New Jersey Institute for Social Justice.

The Oranges & Maplewood Unit of the NAACP represents 11 of the 22 communities in Essex County: Belleville, Bloomfield, The Oranges, Maplewood, Millburn, Livingston, Nutley and Verona.

Proceeds benefit ongoing initiatives and programs of the NAACP, which has been the principal organization at the forefront of advocacy for civil rights, justice and equality in all sectors of society. 

Information about sponsorship opportunities for the corporate and business community and reservations for individuals can be obtained by contacting the gala committee at 973.675.5325 or by email: omfreedomfund@gmail.com.