Staff

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Susan Ridley, LYCS Program Supervisor, loves education! She has a Ph.D. in Expressive Therapies from Lesley University and a M.Sc. in Human Services from Springfield College. She is a Certified Prevention Specialist (CPS), a Certified Psychiatric Rehabilitation Practitioner (CPRP), Activities Director Certified (ADC), Recreation Administrator (RA), and a Registered Expressive Arts Therapist (REAT). In her spare time, she is an artist, specializing in landscapes, seascapes, animals and murals (the bigger the better) as well as learning the art of Raku pottery. Susan has over 20 years experience working with diverse communities of various ages, abilities and disabilities including substance abuse problems, mental health issues, developmental disabilities, and physical impairments.

 

LYCS Leaders Teachers

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Patty Arnold has worked with the Township for almost 5 years in various capacities, including LYCS, a program which she is very passionate about.  Growing up in Florida as an athlete, her first pursuit for work experience was in recreation. Starting at age 14 to present, Patty has competed nationally as well as coached in tennis, swimming, soccer, and dance. She has enjoyed achievements with National rankings in musical performance, playing many instruments as well as composing.  Graduating from the University of Florida, she moved to Beverly Hills, California working in TV/Film mostly for Paramount Pictures and CBS. Her managerial experiences range from being Recreational Supervisor at a young age to Distribution Coordinator for an International Film company. Coast to coast, she continued working in recreation and education at every chance. Patty has obtained specific certificates including Substitute Teacher, FCC Licensed Broadcaster, Lifeguard, WSI, Red Cross BLS and CPR Instructor. Eventually moving to New Jersey, she again began work within the school system and municipality in Livingston with the great desire to enrich and empower youth.  She has taught with NCJW the TDA program, served as class mom and on many committees.

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Mary Ann Carangi graduated with a B.S. degree in Home economics from Douglass College in New Brunswick. She went on to get her M.S. degree in Home Economics from Drexel University in Philadelphia. She taught for well over 30 years at Scotch Plains Fanwood High School. While there, she developed and taught an innovative child development program called “Living with Children.” Mary is married with one grown daughter and currently resides in Livingston.

 

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Alison Clark graduated from Upsala College in 1967 with a double major in English and Elementary Education, student taught in Roseland and landed a job there. She graduated with a Masters in the Art of Teaching from Seton Hall University in 1971. She taught Integrated Language Arts and was Science Teacher for grades 4-6 in Roseland for 41 years. She has had anti-drug and anti-bullying training, both of which were incorporated into her science teaching. Alison initiated numerous programs including school newspaper, book writing and rocketry. After school she taught private violin and piano lessons. She was president of the teacher’s association and representative for county and state associations. She also had the honor of being selected for Teachers Who Make a Difference in Essex County and in Who’s Who Among American Teachers. While in college, she worked as an archery instructor for Livingston’s Recreation Department. Exercise has always been important to her, so she became a step aerobics instructor at the West Essex YMCA for ten years. She played violin in the Livingston Symphony for 4 years and presently is a member of the Masterwork Chorus. Alison took the Dale Carnegie Course, married the instructor, John Clark, together raised 6 children, has 15 very dear grandchildren, and recently became a great-grandmother! Alison is now retired but sharing her love of teaching as Supervisor of Student Teachers for Seton Hall University.  She looks on the LYCS Leadership program as an opportunity to encourage children to think and come up with creative ideas that help them to develop as thoughtful and successful future leaders.

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Andrea “Andi” Douglen retired from teaching after 30 years of service.  With dual certification in Family and Consumer Sciences and Elementary Education, she worked with students in all grade levels.  She also had experience teaching children with various special needs including physical handicaps and autism.  She graduated with a Bachellor of Science degree with High Honors from the University of Maryland and continued her education with graduate classes in ESL and Special Education.   She joined the LYCS program in 2010.

 

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Natalie Li and her husband Troy chose to settle in Livingston in 2010 because they felt it would be a good place to raise a family.  Believing that every resident can make her community even better, she has volunteered at Mount Pleasant Animal Shelter, and as a member of the panel of the New Jersey Juvenile Conference Committees, as well as the Chelsea Symphony in New York City.  She also founded a social organization called L.O.V.E. (Lotus Outreach Volunteer Experience), which is devoted to teaching children the value of respecting and caring for people, animals and our environment through diversified community activities. Natalie hopes to combine these interest and talents with our community’s programs and services.  Natalie has a bachelor’s degree in Electronic and Communications Engineering, and an MBA from Fordham and Peking Universities.  Prior to joining the SYLS staff, she held a managerial position with BMW of North America, LLC.

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Patricia Meeker received a BA degree in Elementary Education from Newark State Teachers’ College, aka. Kean University.   She taught 3rd and 4thgrade for the Irvington, NJ Board of Education for 38 wonderful years.  After retiring a few years ago, she became a substitute teacher.  During her fulfilling career, she received the Governor’s Recognition Award for teaching excellence and had the honor of being featured twice in “Who’s Who Among America’s Teachers?”  She conducted numerous workshops for her fellow teachers involving the creative writing process and how to inspire students to become passionate writers.   Now, Patricia is proud to be a member of the LYCS staff.  During her free time, she volunteers at St. Barnabas Medical Center and at the Mt. Pleasant Animal Shelter.   She was also an active member of the Livingston Bicentennial Committee, 2013.  She is an avid physical fitness fan and can be seen walking the Oval and participating in many of the community’s adult fitness  classes.  Patricia has one son and resides in Livingston with her husband, Richard.

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Barbara Sax recently retired (2012) art teacher. She taught art in Roseland at Lester C. Noecker School for 38 years and received a BA and an MA from Montclair State University majoring in art education.  Barbara also taught briefly in Livingston and South Orange-Maplewood as well as being an art specialist at Crane’s Mill Assisted Living in West Caldwell.  Presently “retired”, she is more active than ever.  In addition to the classes she teaches with the LYCS program, Barbara is also a member of the Arts Council of Livingston and the Montclair Art Museum where she volunteers as a docent.  Barbara hopes to continue her relationship and experiences with LYCS in the future and is proud to be a part of such a worthwhile organization.

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Lynne Schwartz has worked with children all her life.  She has a BA from William Paterson University in Elementary Education and an MA from Montclair State University in Counseling and Student Personnel Services.  Lynne recently retired from 17 years of teaching fourth grade and 13 years serving as the guidance counselor in a large K-7 elementary school in Orange, NJ.  While working as the guidance counselor she developed and facilitated a Peer Mediation group which was then utilized in all the elementary schools in the district. Lynne has two grown children who graduated Livingston High and four grandchildren who she loves to visit. Lynne loves working with children and is excited to have this opportunity to continue working with such a worthwhile program.

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Barbara Wall has a B.S.in Elementary Education (K-8) from L.I.University. She worked in the public school system for many years.  While raising her daughters, she established and directed the Temple Beth Abraham Nursery School in Springfield, N.J. for 10 years. Barbara went back to teaching in 1984.  During those years, she obtained a certification in Substance Awareness from Kean University.  She continued teaching and counseling until 2003.  In 2004, she began working for the LYCS program in Livingston, N.J. While teaching for LYCS, Barbara acheived a HIB Law certification (Harrassment, Intimidation and Bullying) which has given her extensive knowledge regarding this issue. Barbara’s passion is educating and enlightening our young children of today and the gift she receives in return is what “she” learns from all of her students.

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Judy Powell received a BA degree in English from Cornell University and an MA in Special Education from Teachers College, Columbia University.  After teaching for 5 years in Westchester, NY, Judy and her husband raised their family in Livingston, NJ. She became certified to teach English as a Second Language from Montclair State University.  Before retiring 4 years ago, Judy had taught 5th grade in-class support for 20 years.