LIVINGSTON, NJ — The Livingston High School (LHS) chapter of the Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA) program recently hosted its annual American Enterprise Day, which featured presentations by local professionals who shared their experience and advice with the group.

Aidan Baris, FBLA Fundraising and American Enterprise Day Vice President, was charged with signing speakers up for the event. He described how his involvement in FBLA has taught him a great deal about business skills.

“I cannot stress how vital FBLA has been for my development as a problem solver and a leader,” he said. “In the two years I have been on the board of the chapter and two times I have competed at the FBLA National Leadership Conference.”

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Specifically, Baris credits the work he’s done for FBLA for teaching him “the importance of communication, timeliness, and the benefits of reaching out to business professionals and so much more.”

Those skills helped him to recruit the 10 speakers who shared their wisdom at American Enterprise Day with an emphasis is on how to be successful in business.

This year’s guests included:

  • Howard Samuels, CPA;
  • Brad Haime, Head of Leadership Development for Verizon;
  • Keith Eisenstein, Tax Attorney;
  • Melissa Feigelson, Corporate HR for BASF;
  • Robert Furst, Junior Partner at Merrill Bank;
  • Brent Rosenthal, Private Equity Investor;
  • Todd Rubenstein, Founding Principal at Todd Rubenstein Law, Inc.;
  • Ariane Auster, Senior Account Manger for AYCO;
  • Deborah Winitch, North American Head of Talent Acquisition for DSM; and
  • Ken Baris, CEO of Jordan Baris Inc. Real Estate.

According to FBLA’s website, the group dates back to 1937 when founder Professor Hamden L. Forkner of Teachers College, Columbia University in New York, realized the value of creating a national organization uniting all of the nationwide business clubs in high schools and colleges.

FBLA clubs now exist in middle schools, high schools, are called Phi Beta Lambda in colleges and universities and continue for non-students in the business world.

In addition to the annual American Enterprise Day, the Livingston chapter of FBLA also organizes fundraisers throughout the academic year.

Baris announced that the club is currently organizing a fundraiser in collaboration with a company called DormCo.

“We plan on selling affordable dorm room supplies to seniors later this year,” he said. “It’s a great opportunity for seniors going to college to decorate their dorms early so they have one less thing to worry about as their departure to college comes closer.”

FBLA competes in events regionally, statewide and nationally. Baris noted that the competitions, including the State Leadership Conference, are “a great opportunity to meet like-minded individuals as well as compete in events that vary from presentations to tests.”

LHS FBLA is also involved in community service and works with the March of Dimes among other organizations. Click here to read about a CycleBar fundraiser held last year in support of March of Dimes.

There are currently 163 students and two faculty advisors participating in FBLA at LHS, which is open to all grades.

Advisors are also organizing Livingston’s first Senior Internship Program, which will launch in February following and internship expo on Jan. 8 for all interested seniors and prospective mentors. There is still time to sign up as a mentor for the inaugural program.

Click here to learn more about the internship program, or click here for more information about the Livingston FBLA chapter.