The Community Chest’s Gala Raises Record $105,000 to Help People in Need Impacted by COVID-19

Honorary Chairman Joe Parisi, Jr. Photo credit: Luhrs & Associates

(Eastern Bergen County, New Jersey; September 30, 2020) — The Community Chest, a nonprofit organization serving eastern Bergen County in Englewood, New Jersey, raised a record $105,000 at its virtual gala, The Power of the Community, held on September 16.  The funds raised were directed to The Chest’s Coronavirus Emergency Relief Fund to provide competitive grants to nonprofit agencies providing services to people experiencing hardships resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic.  Nina Pineda, an award-winning broadcast journalist with WABC-TV “7 On Your Side”, emceed the event.

Screen shot of emcee Nina Pineda Photo credit: Luhrs & Associates

With the motto ‘Neighbors Helping Neighbors’, The Chest leads initiatives and supports nonprofits that make communities stronger and benefit people in the area.  Through a competitive process, grants will be awarded to nonprofit, tax-exempt organizations to support a range of needs in the area, such as hunger, afterschool programming, elderly care, career counseling for women, choral music instruction for youngsters, mental health services, environmental education, and medical care to diabetic, low income pregnant women among others.

“It takes many hands to do a virtual event for the first time.  The number of people, who supported The Community Chest of Eastern Bergen County’s virtual gala, was notable.  They not only donated financially, but they also contributed a range of great auction prizes, and they provided their generous support of volunteer time.  We thank all of them,” said Dr. Shelly Wimpfheimer, DSW, Executive Director, The Community Chest.

Screen shot of Dr. Shelly Wimpfheimer Photo credit: Luhrs & Associates


The gala honored these companies and individuals for their involvement and contributions to the community.  Englewood Health, formerly Englewood Hospital, received the Community Leadership Award.  Jaguar Land Rover Englewood received the Corporate Philanthropy Award.  Long-time volunteers Barbara Strauss and Tom Manolio were recognized with the Outstanding Volunteers Award.

A donation from ME JANE of new coats and jackets to the gala’s auction for the ‘support a program’ sold out.  Forty-seven children serviced by West Side Infants & Children’s Program and Bergen Family Center received the auctioned outerwear, which will keep them warm this fall.


The 2020 gala drew a record number of sponsors.  They included Lakeland Bank, Otterstedt Insurance Agency, BMW of Tenafly, Citi Private Bank, Boyd Richards Parker & Colonnelli, Englewood Health Foundation, 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 The Bianco-Daly Group Wealth Management, and BLG | Berkley Luxury Group.  These sponsors were joined by Antin, Ehrlich & Epstein, LLP, Dr. Barry and Melanie Zingler, GNY Insurance Companies, VRH, Carol Geisenheimer, TD Bank, and Judy Simon ME JANE Outerwear.

Additional sponsors were Richard Engel, Loren and Jennifer Wimpfheimer, Justin and Shelly Wimpfheimer, Richard and Shawn Kennedy, Adam and Franci Steinberg, Joe and Judy Klyde, Louise Schwartz, Richard Engel and Swati Rao Engel, Peter and Annette Corbin, Suzan Gordon, Alex and April Uram, Jacqueline Mortman and John Pierre Saint-Louis, Barbara Strauss and Tom Manolio, and Michael Shannon.

For further information about The Community Chest of Eastern Bergen County, visit or call 201-568-7474.
About The Community Chest

Founded in 1933, The Community Chest, a nonprofit, tax-exempt organization, has supported local not-for-profit agencies for 86 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.

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