The Ridgewood Community Task Force and Municipal Alliance Committee is appointed by the Village Council to conduct an assessment of the community’s needs regarding alcohol and other drug problems; to identify existing efforts and services acting to reduce this problem; to develop programs to be implemented to prevent alcohol and other drug problems, and to assist the municipality in acquiring funds for the Alliance programs. The Ridgewood Community Task Force and Municipal Alliance Committee has wide representation from the community from the Village and schools, non-profit organizations, police, parents, and interested citizens.
The State of New Jersey provides funding from the Alliance through a grant from the Governor's Council on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse. The Village of Ridgewood matches the grant through 25% cash match and 75% as an in-kind (goods and services) donation.
The Ridgewood Community Task Force and Municipal Alliance Membership
Sheila Brogan, Chair
Deanna Schablik, Grant Administrator
Jacqueline Luthcke, Police Chief, Ridgewood
Parminder Savalia, Valley Hospital Community Health
Nancy Graham, Renfrew Center
Dee DeBernardis, Center for Alcohol and Drug Resources
Nancy Graham, Renfrew Center
Rafael Brito, Member of the Juvenile Conference Committee and high school
Kathy Marshall, President of Federated Home and School Association and high
Glen McCall, Youth Minister at Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Roman Catholic
Tom Gorman, Principal Ridgewood High School
Katie Kashmanian, Principal George Washington Middle School
Tony Orsini, Principal Benjamin Franklin Middle School
Kevin Feeley, Crisis Counselor Ridgewood High School
Dawn Cetrulo, Health Supervisor Ridgewood Health Department
David Zrike, Ridgewood Guild and Backwoods
Glen Sherman, Middle school and high school parent and Municipal
Brendan Sherman, Co-Webmaster
Ex officio: Daniel
Fishbein, Ph.D. Superintendent Ridgewood Public Schools and Nancy Bigos,
Deputy Director Ridgewood Parks and Recreation Department
The Ridgewood Community Task Force and Municipal Alliance oversees the use of the Municipal Alliance Grant to fund programs and projects to reduce alcohol, tobacco and other drugs (ATOD) use and abuse. In the winter of 2008, the Task Force conducted a Village wide needs assessment to identify goals for the next three years. Through this assessment it was discerned that early first use of alcohol among our middle school and high school students was a problem in our community. Ridgewood has a high density of students age 5 to 18 and is the largest school district in Bergen County with 5,800 students. We are a wealthy community where our youth have money to spend and availability of alcohol in their homes. We know that our students are experimenting and using ATOD products. The Community Task Force and Municipal Alliance has made a concerted effort to work closely with our middle school and high school principals and our Crisis Intervention Counselors. Municipal Alliance grant funding is used to support programs for our middle school students at the Community Center and Kids Write Now in 6th grade health classes, support participation in the Heroes and Cool Kids Program for our high school students, fund speakers and training for our high school Peer Counseling and Freshman Focus programs, and design and develop a web site to provide information and resources regarding ATOD prevention for parents and students.
Click here to read our meeting minutes.