ROSELAND, NJ — During a recent council meeting, the Borough of Roseland announced that resident Angelo Carrozza has been named the 2020 Senior Citizen of the Year and Danielle Vigilante and Jennifer Holden have been named the 2020 Mothers of the Year.
As she announced the winners during the virtual meeting, Councilwoman Michelle Tolli said she had fond memories of being named Mother of the Year many years ago and has kept her memorabilia since then.
In February, the borough announced its 2020 Senior Citizen of the Year Contest, which is a tradition that dates back nearly 50 years.
Carrozza has been actively involved in the community for more than 30 years, volunteering in Roseland Coaching Soccer for all age groups, and he had also coached baseball and basketball during that time. Carrozza was a founding member of the Roseland Recreation Booster Club and continues to be an active volunteer within the community.
"It is an honor to recognize any resident for their service to our community, but it is extra special when you can honor someone who has a history of serving our great community,” said Roseland Mayor James Spango. “It has been said many times before that a measure of any community is how it services and treats its youth and seniors. It’s refreshing in this case it is our seniors serving our community.”
A luncheon and awards ceremony scheduled for May 15 at the Hanover Manor was postponed until further notice.
The criteria for the Senior Citizen of the Year Award is that the recipient must be a Roseland resident for at least three years and at least 55 years old. All submissions must include a narrative or resume of the nominee’s contributions.
“Even though we are only choosing one award recipient as the Roseland Senior of the Year, this luncheon is to honor every senior citizen in Roseland,” said Councilwoman Eileen Fishman prior to the event’s cancellation. “It is the borough’s way to say thank you for all they have contributed to our community. We are privileged to be able to host and support this event each year.”
According to Fishman, the criteria used to select the Senior Citizen of the Year is not strict, but community service “weighs heavily in determining a winner.” Fishman and Tolli are both members of the judging committee, along with other borough staff.
The Roseland Recreation Department also kicked off the “Mother of the Year” contest in February, asking entrants to submit an essay of up to 200 words explaining why his or her mom should be named “Mother of the Year.”
According to the governing body, Vigilante was nominated by her son, Giovanni, in the 1st-to 3rd-grade category and that Holden was nominated by her son, Nate, in the 4th-to 6th-grade category for Mother of the Year.
The winners typically participate in activities throughout the year, such as the Memorial Day parade.