UNION, NJ -  A celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Union Township Community Action Organization was held on Friday evening at Galloping Hill Caterers.

“The Board of Directors and I are excited and proud to celebrate 50 years of dedicated service to children, families, senior citizens and members of this great community,” said Joanne Little Clark, UTCAO Board Chair.

Honored at the gala were Legacy Honorees Edward Abdussalaam, Bertha Mathews, Roosevelt Williams, and John Jenkins and Community Honoree Joseph Cryan.

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The UTCAO was organized in 1967 by a group of concerned citizens from all walks of life and all levels of employment and education. Today the organization offers infant/toddler programs, Early Head Start and pre-school programs, a companion aide program, and administration of Union Township’s Section 8 program.

“Our organization has served the needs of this community through 50 interesting and challenging years.  The needs have changed and we are continuously challenged to find new and innovative ways to meet the needs of the community,” said Clark.

Jacqueline Jones, PhD, a teacher, researcher and policymaker, was the evening’s keynote speaker.

“I am proud to be leading this great organization through these times of great change,” said Executive Director Ernestine Frye.  “I can say unequivocally that the work we do in our programs is not easy, but it is extremely important because it impacts the most vulnerable among us.”

"Editor's Note:  In the interest of transparency, TAPinto Union's franchisee/owner/publisher, Kathy Cryan, is married to Sheriff Joe Cryan"