Mike Van Wagner of NJM and Jeffrey M. Vega of PACF


The Princeton Area Community Foundation has been awarded a $150,000 grant from NJM Insurance Group.

The five-year grant will be paid in annual installments of $30,000, and will help fund the Community Foundation’s new All Kids Thrive initiative.

“We are grateful for this tremendous support from NJM, which has been a longtime partner to nonprofits throughout New Jersey, including the Mercer County region,” said Jeffrey M. Vega, president and CEO of the Community Foundation. “Our All Kids Thrive program is a bold, new initiative designed to improve the lives of young people living in poverty in our region, but we know we cannot tackle this problem alone. That’s why supporters like NJM are so important. We hope this inspires other funders to collaborate with us, as we work to ensure that All Kids Thrive.”

The All Kids Thrive program will fund partnerships between schools and nonprofits that are working to reduce chronic absenteeism.

Studies show children who miss 10 percent or more of the school year — 18 days — often lag behind their peers at every level: from early childhood, when chronic absenteeism erodes the benefits of pre-K, to high school, where chronically absent students are more likely to drop out.

The Community Foundation will announce the 2018 All Kids Thrive grant recipients within the next several months.

“One of our core values as a company is to support the communities we’re privileged to serve,” said Mike Van Wagner, NJM’s vice president of public affairs. “For nearly 30 years, the Princeton Area Community Foundation has helped promote philanthropy and advance the well-being of communities throughout central New Jersey. We’re thrilled to be part of the All Kids Thrive initiative, and look forward to seeing the positive impact it will have in our region.”

Princeton Area Community Foundation, 15 Princess Road, Suite A, Lawrenceville 08648. 609-219-1800. Jeffrey M. Vega, president. www.pacf.org.

Management Moves

Ovation at Riverwalk, Plainsboro. 484-472-8151. www.ovationatriverwalk.com.

SageLife, operator of five retirement living communities in Pennsylvania and Maryland, has named Paul O’Brien as general manager of Ovation at Riverwalk, the company’s first community in New Jersey. Due to open in summer, 2019, the 260-unit Ovation at Riverwalk broke ground in April on the campus of Penn Medicine Princeton Medical Center in Plainsboro.

O’Brien is a real estate and retirement living community veteran. Prior to joining SageLife he was senior vice president of Solutions Advisors, a retirement living community management and consulting firm in Princeton. He has served in executive director and marketing positions for retirement living communities in New Jersey and is a licensed real estate broker in New Jersey and Maryland. O’Brien founded Plainsboro Business Partnership in 2009 and helped it merge with Princeton Regional Chamber of Commerce in 2011.

He received a bachelor’s degree from Pace University and a master’s degree in public administration from Kean University.

“Like our other SageLife communities, Ovation at Riverwalk is designed to fulfill SageLife’s commitment to creating inspired community living,” said Kelly Andress, SageLife’s founder and president. “We’re fortunate to have found Paul to help us pursue that commitment. He knows the Plainsboro/Princeton area, is well-connected with the business community here and is a knowledgeable and experienced real estate and retirement living professional. We look forward to opening Ovation at Riverwalk under his leadership in summer 2019.”

Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital , 1 Robert Wood Johnson Place, New Brunswick 08903. 732-828-3000. Stephen K. Jones, president/CEO. www.rwjuh.edu.

The board of Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital Hamilton has named Bill Walsh as its new chairman.

Walsh replaces William Rue Sr., chairman of Rue Insurance, who recently completed a three-year term as chairman and will remain on the board.

Walsh is retired after 37 years in the utility industry where he focused on regulatory and governmental affairs at Public Service Enterprise Group and New Jersey American Water. He has been a member of the hospital board since 1994.

Taking over Walsh’s vice chair position is Nina Melker, a current member of the board and chairwoman of the RWJUH Hamilton Foundation Board.

Melker is the senior vice president of private banking at Berkshire Bank. She has worked in the banking industry for more than 30 years.

Crosstown Moves

The Clark Group LLC, 850 Bear Tavern Road, Ewing 08648. 609-844-1112. Jeffrey Ferry, owner.

The insurance agency has moved from Lenox Drive in Lawrence to Bear Tavern Road in Ewing.

Leaving Town

Fusion Marketing, 243 Wall Street, Princeton.

The marketing company has left its Wall Street office. A voice mailbox at its listed number was full.


Harry Masterson Sr., 94, on June 25. He was a captain in the Ewing Township police, retiring as head of the traffic division in 1989. Known as “Mr. Ewing,” he organized events including the mayoral inauguration, Memorial Day, and Veterans Day. He was president of the Ewing Township Patriotic Committee, which founded the annual Independence Day parade, which ran for more than 50 years.

John L. Oliver, 79. He was employed by Gallup and Robinson Marketing and Research until his retirement in 2004.

Robert George Gilpin Jr., 87, on June 20. A leading scholar of international relations, he was a professor of politics and the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University for more than 30 years and a recipient of numerous prestigious fellowships.

Patricia R. Delate, 92, on June 26. She worked at Gallup and Robinson, the Swift Agency, the New Jersey Chamber of Commerce, and most recently, the Bucks County Library System, where she worked until her retirement at age 80.

William Anthes, 93, on June 27. He was a B-17 pilot in the 8th Air Force in World War II. He worked as a mechanical engineer for Exxon at Bayway Refinery.

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