Caldwell wins Business Person of the Year

HAMBURG. Julia Duane Quinlan of the Karen Ann Quinlan Hospice receives the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Sussex County Chamber of Commerce.

| 15 May 2024 | 05:08

Jessica Caldwell, principal planner with Dykstra J. Caldwell & Associates in Newton, was named Business Person of the Year at the Sussex County Chamber of Commerce’s annual “Toast to the Stars” awards luncheon.

The luncheon was April 25 at the Grand Cascades Lodge at Crystal Springs Resort in Hamburg.

Caldwell is the municipal and board planner for eight municipalities in Morris and Sussex counties. She also teaches certification courses to planning and zoning board members and board administrators through the continuing education program at Rutgers University’s Bloustein School for Planning and Public Policy.

The Lifetime Achievement Award went to Julia Duane Quinlan, chief executive and co-founder of the Karen Ann Quinlan Hospice in Newton.

She and her late husband, Joseph, founded the hospice in 1980 in memory of their daughter, who lapsed into a coma in 1975 at age 21. Doctors said she had suffered brain damage, and she was put on a ventilator and feeding tube.

In a historic legal case, the New Jersey Supreme Court ruled in 1976 that the Quinlans had the right to end the extraordinary measures being used to keep their daughter alive. The ventilator was removed and she continued to breathe on her own until she died in 1985.

The Chairwoman’s Award was presented to the German Christmas Market of New Jersey, a nonprofit foundation that holds the annual three-day event at the Sussex County fairgrounds. It distributes the money raised there to charities and other nonprofits.

In March, the German Christmas Market of New Jersey donated more than $122,000 in grants to 44 groups in Sussex County.

Special recognition

The Hampton Township Education Foundation received a Special Recognition Award for its Brandon’s House project.

The foundation helped raise money to provide a new home for Brandon Bordt and his father, Jim, after their trailer-park home in Lafayette became uninhabitable. Bordt, a 2011 graduate of Kittatinny Regional High School, is well-known as a big fan of Kittatinny sports teams and the Sussex County Miners.

With multiple fundraising events and donations from nearly 1,200 people, the project raised $80,435 in cash and at least $25,000 in services, and the Bordts moved into their new home in March.

A formal ribbon-cutting ceremony to celebrate Brandon’s House is planned Tuesday, May 14 before the Miners’ game against the Quebec Capitales at Skylands Stadium in Augusta.

The Rising Star Award was given to Athena Storm, director of development at Domestic Abuse & Sexual Assault Intervention Services (DASI) in Newton. The award goes to emerging leaders whose achievements reflect exceptional growth in their profession, increased levels of leadership and responsibility, and high potential for future impact.

The Sussex County YMCA received the Nonprofit Organization of the Year Award, and the Rock, Ribs and Ridges Festival won the Outstanding Community Event of the Year Award.

Sparta’s Shack and the Sussex County Municipal Utilities Authority shared the Customer Service Award.

Other awards presented:

• Entrepreneur of the Year: Perry and Michele Bonadies of Bear Brook Valley Rock Island Lake Club.

• Business Innovation (tie): Sussex County Community College’s Culinary Institute and Arbor Restaurant and GYMGUYZ of Sussex, Warren and Orange counties.

• Workplace of the Year: Mountain Creek Resort.

• Chamber Champion: Deena Smith of First Hope Bank.

• Healthy Living: The Weekend Bag Program.

• Quality in Business (tie): Wild West City and Iliff-Ruggiero Funeral Home.

• Quality in Living: Center for Prevention & Counseling.

• David C. Herzenberg Award: Newton Medical Center and Atlantic Behavioral Health.