Livingston Famous…

Jared Kushner

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Jared Kushner – at right with wife Ivanka (Trump) Kushner (photo via Forbes)

Jared Kushner was born in 1981 in Livingston. The son of real estate magnate Charles Kushner, he took over as CEO of Kushner Companies in 2008.  In 2009, he married Ivanka Trump, businesswoman and daughter of Donald J. Trump. Kushner is a real estate investor and developer, publisher, and was a critical part of the 2016 Presidential campaign of well-known businessman Donald J. Trump.  Following Trump’s Presidential Inauguration on January 20, 2017, Kushner was sworn in as Senior Advisor to the President.


Stephen Oremus

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Stephen Oremus was born in 1971 in Livingston. He was raised here and attended Livingston High School. He graduated from the Berklee College of Music in Boston in 1992, with a major in film scoring. Stephen is an American musician who has worked on Broadway theatre productions as musical director and as orchestrator. His credits include arranger and orchestrator for the music for Avenue Q, musical director and arranger for Wicked, arranger and orchestrator for All Shook Up, and musical director for 9 to 5. His orchestrations for The Book of Mormon won him a Tony Award in 2011, for Best Orchestrations. Stephen also won the Tony Award for Best Orchestrations for Kinky Boots.


Tom Kean

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Thomas Howard “Tom” Kean, Sr. was born April 21, 1935 in New York City, but was a Livingston resident for many years. He was a Republican governor who served two terms for New Jersey, from 1982 to 1990. After serving as the 48th governor of New Jersey, Kean was president of Drew University from 1990 to 2005. In 2002, President George W. Bush appointed Kean as Chairman of the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States.


Nikki M. James

Nikki James

<> at Museum of Modern Art on December 9, 2013 in New York City.


Nikki Michelle James was born on June 3, 1981 and is an actress and singer. James is best known for her performances in the popular stage musicals The Book of Mormon (for which she won a Tony Award), and Les Misérables. She also has many TV shows on her resume. Nikki is a 1999 graduate of Livingston High School!


Alan Cooper

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Alan Cooper is a former Livingston resident and founding member of the rock group Sha Na Na. He even sang lead for the band at Woodstock in 1969! He then went on to become a Professor of Jewish Studies and is now the provost of the Jewish Theological Seminary in New York.


Joe Dante


Joe Dante is a film director, producer, editor and actor. Though he was born in Morristown, he grew up right here in Livingston. Joe has directed many popular TV shows and films, including The Howling, The “Burbs (with Tom Hanks), and Gremlins! Joe is a well-known horror buff and is currently on the board of the Hollywood Horror Museum.


Leonard Lebrecht Friedman

Lennie Friedman

Leonard Lebrecht “Lennie” Friedman was born on October 13, 1976 in Livingston. He is a former American football offensive lineman. He played college football at Duke and was drafted by the Denver Broncos in the second round of the 1999 NFL Draft. Friedman has also played for the Washington Redskins, Chicago Bears, and Cleveland Browns. (Photo and info via Wikipedia.)



Harlan Coben

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Harlan Coben (born January 4, 1962) is an award-winning author of mystery novels and thrillers. Some of the locales in the novels are set in and around New York and New Jersey. He has been # 1 on the New York Times bestsellers list 8 times!

Harlan was a long time Livingston resident who graduated from Livingston High School in 1980. He was childhood friends with future Governor Chris Christie, who also was raised in Livingston.

Harlan Coben’s Official Website


Clara Maass

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In the 1880s, Clara Maass lived on her family’s farm on Sycamore Avenue. She attended the Northfield School, which was a one-room schoolhouse at that time.  Clara is a world famous nurse whose dedication to the medical field ultimately cost her life at age 25, when she volunteered to be bitten by mosquitos carrying the yellow fever virus, in the hope of discovering a cure. The doctors were hoping to find an eventual vaccine for the prevention of that disease. There have been many awards and dedications in her memory, the most well-known is having the hospital in Belleville, New Jersey, named after her. She was buried in Newark, New Jersey, in 1902 with full military honors.


Bruce Beck

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Bruce Beck  is a fan favorite sports broadcaster  from WNBC who was born in Livingston in 1956. He has done the broadcasts for many Superbowls, Stanley Cup finals and World Series, among many other notable sporting events. His mother,  Doris Beck, was the first woman Mayor in the history of Livingston and Essex County.


Steve H. Nisenson

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Steve H. Nisenson  is a former basketball guard at Hofstra University who grew up in Livingston and attended LHS. He set an all-time basketball scoring record at Hofstra that stood for 43 years. “He also set the all-time national college season free-throw record in 1964, becoming the first college player to have a free throw percentage of better than .900.” He ultimately became a coach at Hofstra and then spent 16 years as the director of admissions at C.W. Post (Wikipedia). According to the 2009-10 Hofstra Men’s Basketball Media Guide, he was inducted into the Hofstra Athletics Hall of Fame in 2006. (info via Wikipedia)


Paul E. Olsen


Paleontologist Paul E. Olsen was born in August 1953. He became a famous American Paleontologist thanks to the fact that he grew up as a teenager here in Livingston, where he heard about fossils being discovered at what is now Riker Hill Art Park.  After rushing over to see the fossils for himself, he and a friend discovered and studied a number of them at the Riker Hill site. As a teen, he sent President Richard M. Nixon a dinosaur footprint cast from the site, thus becoming “instrumental in Riker Hill Fossil Site being named a National Natural Landmark.” The experience opened up an entire world of science to Olsen, who went on to received “a M. Phil. and a Ph.D. in Biology at Yale University in 1984. His thesis was on the Newark Supergroup, also known as the Newark Group, which is “an assemblage of Late Triassic and Early Jurassic sedimentary rocks which outcrop intermittently along the United States East Coast; the exposures extend from Massachusetts to North Carolina, with more still in Nova Scotia. It is named for the city of Newark, New Jersey.” (info & quotes: Wikipedia)


Chelsea Joy Handler


TV Personality Chelsea Joy Handler was born February 25, 1975 in Livingston, NJ.  She is the youngest of six children. She is a comedian, actress, author, television host, and producer. She hosted a late-night talk show called Chelsea Lately on the E! network from 2007 to 2014.  She’s currently preparing to host a show on Netflix.


Jason Alexander

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Actor Jay Scott Greenspan (born September 23, 1959), is better known by the stage name Jason Alexander. Alexander (above left, in his 1977 Livingston yearbook photo) is best known for his role as George Costanza on the sitcom Seinfeld (1989–1998) (photo above right). He has had a busy career on television, in films, and on stage (Seinfeld and Curb Your Enthusiasm,  Pretty Woman and Shallow  Hal, Jerome Robbins’ Broadway and A Fish in the Dark… to name just a few). Alexander was born in Newark, but grew up here in Livingston, and is a 1977 graduate of Livingston High School. Jason participated in many school plays at Livingston High School, and at 15, took on his professional name, Jason Alexander.