JERSEY CITY, NJ – Michael Catania, executive director of Duke Farms was named one of LeadNJ (LNJ)’s “30 Leaders for 30 Years” at a gala on September 22nd.

Hundreds of influential leaders from across New Jersey – from the government, nonprofit, business and journalism sectors – gathered here for the event, honoring 30 individuals whose leadership has made “New Jersey a better place to live and work.”

The ceremony also marked a celebration of 30 years since the founding of LNJ, a program that educates, empowers and engages talented leaders to create systemic change around New Jersey's most challenging issues.

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“I am honored to be included in this group of influential leaders in New Jersey” Catania said, “and delighted to have enjoyed a long association with Lead NJ during the last several decades.

“We look forward to welcoming the 2016 LNJ class here to Duke Farms this fall for their upcoming session on energy, and to showcasing the various ways in which Duke Farms is demonstrating leadership on sustainability and stewardship in general, as well as on climate change, renewable energy, sustainable agriculture and ecological restoration in particular.”

Since its first class in 1986, LNJ has graduated nearly 1,500 fellows, who include corporate and nonprofit CEOs, professors, journalists, politicians and government administrators at all levels, all of whom have dedicated their careers to improving life in the Garden State.

“We are immensely proud of the leadership offered by LNJ fellows across the state over the past three decades.” said Mark Murphy, president, Lead New Jersey, and Fellow, class of ’91. “It was a tremendously challenging task to select just 30 individuals to receive this award, because each one of our Fellows truly exemplifies our mission. Each has made a unique leadership contribution to their profession and toward improving life in our state. “

The full list of “30 Leaders for 30 Years” honorees can be found online at

Lead New Jersey, formerly known as Leadership New Jersey, was founded with a mission of convening leaders from various sectors and industries to address emerging issues facing the state and its residents. In recent years, the focus of LNJ’s programs has spanned affordable healthcare, criminal justice, economic development and transportation.

Applications for the 2017 class are currently being accepted and can be found on the organization’s website at

Duke Farms serves as a model of environmental stewardship and inspires visitors to become informed stewards of the land. It is a place of education, enjoyment and research that enhances the environmental health of the region. Through the beauty of its natural setting, the diversity of its wildlife, and the scope and quality of its educational programs, demonstrations and research, Duke Farms inspires people to transform their approach to conservation and to start building a more sustainable future. For more information, visit .