MORRISTOWN, NJ - Grow It Green Morristown, a community-building nonprofit organization focused on local food access, education and sustainability, has announced Erica VanAuken Colace as its new Executive Director. Colace succeeds Abby Gallo, who resigned to spend more time with family.

“Today, we are excited to welcome Erica as the new Executive Director,” said Christine Volinsky, Board President of Grow It Green Morristown.. “Erica brings new energy and a fresh perspective to the role, and we look forward to her leadership as the organization continues to grow.” 

Colace comes to the organization from the New York-New Jersey Trail Conference where she honed her nonprofit management skills. She also worked as the Outreach and Education Director for the New Jersey Highlands Coalition providing education on the importance of the Highlands region to the State's drinking water supply as well as represented the Coalition while working with NJ Keep it Green to secure long-term funding for New Jersey's preservation programs.  Colace was previously employed as an Environmental Educator at the Meadowlands Environment Center teaching science-based content to students and adults with disabilities. Throughout her career, she has developed and presented numerous workshops, lectures, and conferences focusing on environmental issues in the state.

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“I couldn’t be more excited to join Grow It Green Morristown and the important work that benefits the greater Morristown community,” said Colace. “As a long-time environmental advocate in northern New Jersey, watching the impressive impact Grow It Green has had on Morristown’s environment and residents has been incredibly inspiring. I am happy to officially join the team, and eager to help continue to grow a healthier and greener Morristown.”

A native of New Jersey, Erica grew up in Sussex County, where she learned to love nature through birdwatching, hiking and gardening. She is a graduate of Ramapo College of New Jersey's Institute of Environmental Studies.

“We want to thank Abby for her service over the last three years,” said Volinsky. “Abby played a critical role in the search process for her replacement and also stayed on as needed to help ensure a seamless transition. For all these things and more, we will be forever grateful,” 

During Gallo's tenure, Grow It Green became a highly regarded organization in the community and New Jersey, making significant impacts in ensuring equal access to local, fresh food, and providing education on healthy eating and the environment.

For more information on Grow it Green Morristown; visit

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