MONTVILLE, NJ -- Montville Township resident Joseph Salamone was honored with the Degree of Chevalier from DeMolay International.  The highest honor that an active DeMolay can receive, the Degree of Chevalier is an award for outstanding and remarkable DeMolay activity and effort.

DeMolay is a community-based international organization for young men aged 12 to 21. Members learn life skills, responsibility, and cooperation by working together to plan and carry out their customized program of social, sports and community service activities. Adult volunteers act as role models and advisors. Salamone was Past Master Councilor of the Phoenix Chapter, located in Pompton Lakes.

DeMolay International confers the Degree of Chevalier upon a member of the order or a senior member who has performed unusual and meritorious service on behalf of the order. The degree cannot be applied for, and the nomination is made without the knowledge of the member to be honored. The unanimous vote of DeMolay International at its regular session is required to elect a nominee. Salamone received his award on Jan. 14.

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“I honestly did not expect to receive this honor, and I am humbled that I did,” Salamone said. “Since I joined DeMolay, I have gone through life trying my best to represent who a DeMolay is and what we stand for.”

Salamone is a member of the Montville Township High School class of 2014, where he was president of R.E.A.C.H., a member of Make-A-Wish, and a member of the varsity track & field and varsity football teams. He was also named a ShopRite Star during his senior year.

He is currently a junior at The College of New Jersey, where he is majoring in interdisciplinary business with a concentration in innovation and entrepreneurship. He is the first student to at TCNJ with this major. As a sophomore, Salamone co-founded The College of New Jersey Entrepreneurship Club, which has more than 100 members.

“Through DeMolay, I learned many valuable skills, such as membership recruitment, public speaking and brotherhood skills, that have helped me advance throughout life,” Salamone told TAPinto Montville. “Those skills have led to many successes in the early life of the Entrepreneurship Club.

“The club has hosted big-name speakers, such as Brian Smith, the Founder of Ugg. Using my DeMolay skills, I was able to gain an audience for, and introduce the speakers at these events. However, the most important skill I learned from DeMolay was brotherhood. Without a great team behind me, none of our events would be possible. The values and skills gained in DeMolay are extremely useful outside of the chapter, too.”

Since 1919, DeMolay has encouraged more than a million young men to become leaders of character, including many successful businessmen, public servants, entertainers and athletes. There are chapters in Bayonne, Clifton, Dover, Jersey City, Metuchen, Ridgewood and Westfield. For more information on DeMolay, visit www.demolay.org.