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The Community Chest’s Virtual Gala to Raise Funds to Help Neighbors Experiencing Hardships From COVID-19

July 31, 2020 , Luhrs & Associates

Nina Pineda, an award-winning broadcast journalist with WABC-TV “7 On Your Side”, will serve as master of ceremonies at The Community Chest’s virtual gala on September 16.

(Eastern Bergen County, New Jersey; July 31, 2020) — Responding to neighbors in need, who are experiencing hardships from COVID-19, is the focus of The Community Chest’s virtual gala, The Power of Community, on September 16, 2020.  The Chest, a nonprofit, tax-exempt organization serving eastern Bergen County, New Jersey, presents its first virtual gala from 7:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

Nina Pineda, an award-winning broadcast journalist with WABC-TV “7 On Your Side”, joins The Chest as Emcee.  Producer/Director Harry Martin, an Emmy Award-winning TV journalist who anchored TV newscasts at three leading television stations in New York City, brings his expertise to produce the event.  Net proceeds from the gala will provide grants to nonprofit agencies responding to increased demand for services to meet the pressing needs of people in eastern Bergen County impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.


The Community Chest will recognize these four leaders for their extensive involvement and contributions to the community:

• Englewood Health, formerly Englewood Hospital, will be honored with the Community Leadership Award for its wide-ranging work in the region with projects including the Partnership for Healthy Eating initiative, a consortium of agencies and volunteers creating healthy dinners at houses of workshop in Englewood.  For more than 87 years, Englewood Health has been a partner of The Community Chest, beginning in 1933 when the hospital was one of five nonprofits funded at The Chest’s formation.  They offer a range of services for Englewood’s low-income residents to address various health issues and work closely with the Federally Qualified Health Center in Englewood by staffing the facility with medical residents.

• Jaguar Land Rover Englewood will receive the Corporate Philanthropy Award.  The company supports The Community Chest’s work and plans to raise awareness about the nonprofit’s work in eastern Bergen County.  Jaguar Land Rover Englewood also committed to contribute $100 per car sold to The Chest during the month of December.

• Barbara Strauss and Tom Manolio will be recognized with the Outstanding Volunteers Award for their numerous activities in the community.  During Strauss’ nearly nine-year tenure on The Chest’s board of managers, she has held the positions of treasurer, secretary and vice president.  She has also chaired the Development Committee and for the last three years, she has served as the chair of the Events Committee.  For over 20 years, she has worked in the insurance industry and currently is Executive Vice President at York International.

Manolio has served actively with The Chest in various capacities.  A lifelong resident of Englewood Cliffs, he has been a member of the Englewood Cliffs Fire Department for over 40 years.  As a Councilman in Englewood Cliffs, he was the liaison to the Public Safety Department.  In his work as a Client Advisor at BMW of Manhattan, he has supported The Chest’s Events Committee work.


The gala committee comprised of Chair Barbara Strauss, Marcie Mann, Tom Manolio, Sandy Pinto, Melanie Simon, Franci Steinberg, Jami Toolen, Andrew Kovar, and Amy Sokal promises a fun evening with an auction.

A range of products will be available to bid upon in the silent benefit auction.  Items in the auction will be available for review online at the beginning of September.

Tickets and Sponsors

Although tickets to attend the virtual gala are free, guests are invited to make a donation and receive the following gifts:  $50-$99 Feathertini glass with a recipe for The Chest’s signature cocktail of the evening, $100-$499 a gift bag with craft liquors and a Feathertini glass, and $500 and over provides two tickets to the 2021 Spring Gala and a Feathertini glass.  Other opportunities to support The Chest’s work include participating in the silent auction, making a contribution directly to the organization, and participating in the fund-a-need paddle raises.  Registration may be done online at https://e.givesmart.com/events/gq8/.

To date, the gala’s 2020 sponsors are:  BMW of Tenafly, Centennial Wealth Management Group, Citi Private Bank, Boyd Richards Parker & Colonnelli, Englewood Health, GNY Insurance Companies, Jaguar Land Rover Englewood, The Kamson Corp., Robert J. Wilkens Insurance Agency, The Alfiero & Lucia Palestroni Foundation, Valley National Bank, Visions Federal Credit Union, ConnectOne Bank, UBS, BLG | Berkley Luxury Group, Richard Engel, Loren and Jennifer Wimpfheimer, Justin and Shelly Wimpfheimer, Loren and Jennifer Wimpfheimer, Richard and Shawn Kennedy, Adam and Franci Steinberg, Joe and Judy Klyde, and Peter and Annette Corbin.

Sponsorship levels are available for individuals and businesses to help fill the chest.  Each offers various marketing opportunities and the recognition of this philanthropic involvement by The Community Chest’s large number of supporters.  Advertising is also available in The Chest’s online gala journal.  For more information about becoming a sponsor or to place an ad in the journal, visit https://e.givesmart.com/events/gq8/i/ or call the office at 201-568-7474.  Sponsors, advertisers, and donors to the gala may send their payment made out to The Community Chest, 122 South Van Brunt Street in Englewood, New Jersey 07631.

About The Community Chest

Founded in 1933, The Community Chest, a nonprofit, tax-exempt organization, has supported local not-for-profit agencies for 87 years.  The Chest leads initiatives and supports nonprofits that make our communities stronger and benefit people in need in eastern Bergen County.  Each year, The Chest raises funds and allocates them to agencies demonstrating the capacity to provide services to local citizens.  The organization also provides coordinating and planning services in its communities, serving as a bridge between agencies and organizations and investing in the stability and quality of the service network.

The Community Chest’s Board of Managers is comprised of community leaders dedicated to improving the lives of neighbors in need.  People interested in being considered for board membership may contact executive director Shelly Wimpfheimer at (201) 568-7474.

For further information about The Chest, visit www.thecommunitychestebc.org/ or contact (201) 568-7474.  Stay updated about the organization’s activities on Facebook and Twitter.

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