HELMETTA, NJ - Borough Mayor Chris Slavicek will lead a special tree planting and dedication ceremony on Saturday, July 18 at 10 a.m. at the Helmetta Community Center to honor Spotswood PTA President Melissa Hallerman. Hallerman will be stepping down from the organization at the end of the month. The Spotswood resident has been a part of the Spotswood PTA for the past 12 years and served as its president for the last four.
During her time as PTA president, the organization was awarded the President's Volunteer Service Award for the second straight year this spring. The prestigious award is bestowed upon organizations that work hard serving both the school district and the community.
In August 2018, the Spotswood School District's Schoenly School, Appleby School and the Memorial Middle School were all named as National PTA Schools of Excellence. The National PTA School of Excellence award is the highest honor a Parent Teacher Association can receive.
"Melissa is an incredible woman, leader and true advocate for our school students, teachers, parents and greater community," said Helmetta Mayor Chris Slavicek. "With a strong emphasis on togetherness, she has been integral and responsible for bridging the gap between our community and school during her tenure. She has always included Helmetta by generously participating and wholeheartedly supporting all of our town events without question."
When the Spotswood School District was forced to close its doors due to the coronavirus pandemic, Hallerman and her fellow PTA volunteers organized numerous events to help keep students, staff and the community connected. In April, she was named by the mayor as one of Helmetta's Hometown Heroes for her work to help keep spirits up throughout the community during the stay-at-home.
"The PTA board members inspire me every day," Hallerman said. "I feed off of their commitment, energy and passion. I think it speaks volumes that we decided in mid-March when the world was turning upside down that we, as an organization, were not going to pack it in. We collectively decided we were still going to forge ahead in any way possible to connect our community and keep spirits high."
"To say I am honored, exhilarated and extremely humbled by Mayor Slavicek and Helmetta’s kind gesture is an understatement," Hallerman said of the upcoming tree planting and dedication ceremony. "I still can’t find the words to properly say thank you. I personally invite each and every one of you to join us. Thank you, Mayor Slavicek and the entire Helmetta community. You will forever hold a place in my heart."
All month long Hallerman has been thanking the members of the PTA board on the Spotswood NJ PTA's Facebook and Instagram pages with heartfelt posts recognizing them for their contributions during her tenure at PTA President.
The rain date for the tree planting and dedication ceremony to honor Hallerman is Sunday, July 19 at 10 a.m. The Helmetta Community Center is located at One Brookside Place.