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2023 TWIN Awards
Breakfast Celebration

To benefit the YWCA of Union County

Thursday, May 11, 2023
8:00 am to 9:30 am

Embassy Suites Hotel
Berkeley Heights, NJ

2023 PRESS RELEASE

Letter from the CEO

Thank you for your interest in supporting the 2023 YWCA TWIN event. This prestigious celebration of empowerment and recognition salutes the achievements of professional women who have made significant contributions to their industries and communities, and acknowledges the organizations that supported their efforts.

TWIN reflects the mission of the YWCA as it strives to empower women – economically, personally, professionally, and in all sectors of their lives. The TWIN awards celebration not only showcases the sponsoring companies for their leadership in this area, but also provides core funding for YWCA women’s empowerment initiatives, including the 24-Hour Domestic Violence Hotline, Residential Services, and Family Justice Center.

You may notice that some changes have been made to the event this year, including the nomination criteria and honoree selection process. Our goal is to focus more attention on the achievement of those nominated and honor those who are truly exceptional. We have created five award categories that support the mission and core values of the YWCA. In addition, we are returning to an in-person event and new breakfast timeframe.

We invite you to join us on Thursday, May 11, 2023 and to support the event by becoming a TWIN sponsor or underwriter, helping us to recognize the talented individuals who inspire and lead us.

Sincerely,

Karen Geer
Executive Director

About TWIN

TWIN is a national and international awards program of the YWCA. For over 40 years, TWIN of Mid Jersey has honored women in the northern and central areas of New Jersey, recognizing their leadership and achievement.

The event is designed to honor those who have excelled in their fields and made significant contributions to their industries, as well as to their communities in the areas of racial justice and equity, service to women and children, and empowering women. In addition, it will salute organizations that encourage high achievement by women of diverse backgrounds.

2023 TWIN Nominees

Armando D’Errico

Mr. D’Errico is the principal of Pinnacle Development Group and has extensive experience in construction management, real estate development, and finance. Throughout his long year career as a Developer and General Contractor, Mr. D’Errico has built in excess of 270,000 square feet of, mixed-use, cultural and commercial projects in various capacities. Mr. D’Errico has been recognized by various organizations throughout the years including NJ BIZ which inducted him into the 2013 Forty Under 40 which celebrates the State of New Jersey’s most successful businessmen and women. His work history includes being a Managing Member of the NJ Community Development Group, and Partner of the Parkview Developers Group, in Kenilworth, New Jersey.

Mr. D’Errico has extensive education in Real Estate Development including finalizing his MSRED from Fordham University in March 2024, Masters of Science in both Accounting and Business Administration from Saint Peter’s University in Jersey City and an undergraduate in Business Administration. He holds licenses from the Green Building Council and is an LEED Accredited Professional. He is on the Advisory Board of the Elizabeth Development Company and was a member of the Board of Trustees of the United Way of Greater Union County.

Above all, Mr. D’Errico makes himself accessible to the communities he works in and serves. By working directly with underprivileged youth, Mr. D’Errico has successfully placed young men and women to work, while giving them access to federally approved apprenticeship training programs. Today, long-standing organizations and real estate developers call upon Mr. D’Errico’s expertise in Affirmative Action, Section 3 and local hiring in order to comply with the increasingly stringent municipal, state-federal requirements.

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Katie J. Freund

Katie Freund is the Vice President of Internal Audit for Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey. She has over 20 years of professional audit experience. Ms. Freund began her career in a “Big 4” public accounting firm, performing external audits for a variety of clients in the healthcare and financial services industries. She has since held internal audit positions in several health insurance companies, where she has built audit and advisory functions, implemented financial control frameworks and managed compliance and accreditation teams.

Ms. Freund graduated from the University of Pittsburgh with a Bachelor’s of Science in Business Administration. She has a Master’s Degree in Accountancy from the University of Virginia. Ms. Freund is a licensed CPA. She and her husband, Jack, are blessed with three daughters and two cats.

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Lauren Hyland

Lauren Hyland is a driven young professional with 6 years of experience in the Chemicals Industry. She graduated from Stevens Institute of Technology in 2017 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Chemical Engineering and has been making a significant impact in her field ever since. Her career began as a Rotational Engineer at Scientific Design Company Inc. upon graduation. Lauren joined Infineum in 2019 as a Process Contact Engineer where she further developed and honed both her technical and professional skills where she quickly moved to the role of Plant Technical Leader.

Her current role, Plant Technical Leader, includes leading a team of Process Contact Engineers whom are responsible for the continuous operation and quality of the manufacturing units at the Bayway Chemical Plant, developing young engineers through the Infineum Cooperative Education and Internship program, and upholding the Infineum Quality Management System for the site. This role is critical in support of Infineum’s drive to deliver quality products to our customers in a timely manner. She also acts as a focal point for the Infineum Operations Integrity Management System and the Infineum Controls Framework for the entire Bayway Chemical Plant to ensure Infineum’s safe, secure and reliable operations. Lauren collaborates effectively across the organization and has valuable experience in optimization, strategic thinking, and troubleshooting. She is always available to support, advise, and mentor other colleagues.

In addition to her role, she actively participates and promotes Diversity, Inclusiveness, and Equity, the Women’s Affinity Group, the Infineum Total Safety Culture and Community Outreach activities. Her volunteer roles have included: Diversity, Inclusiveness, and Equity champion, founder and leader of the Bayway Career Development Program, and founding member of the Women’s Affinity Group. She’s represented Infineum in Making Strides Against Breast Cancer & Heart Walks, Annual School Supply and Food Drives, and Holiday Outreach Events such as Be An Angel & Be A Star. Lauren has a strong passion for raising awareness and driving change both within Infineum and in our community surrounding gender equity, inclusivity, diversity, and career development.

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Mansi Sanghvi

Mansi Sanghvi is a Production Supervisor and an Emergency Responder at Phillips 66 Bayway Refinery. Mansi started her career at the Bayway Refinery in 2015 as a chemical process engineer and since then, has held various multi-disciplinary roles. This initiative has allowed her the opportunity to become the youngest Production Supervisor and complete her initial Industrial firefighting training in 2022. She believes in her work to provide affordable energy and being a part of a sustainable future.

Born and raised in the state of Gujarat, India, Mansi has been exposed to wealth disparity and gender inequality at a very young age. Therefore, her passion has been to use her access and privilege to improve the lives of the surrounding communities. While professionally growing her career, Mansi led the Linden Rotary Club until 2022 and is actively leading the Women’s Network at Bayway Refinery. Through these platforms, Mansi has organized volunteer hours and fundraised donations for the non-profit organizations in Union County focusing on family success center, childcare, food pantries, and women empowerment. Mansi also serves on the Board of Directors for Rahway Community Action Organization in Rahway, NJ, and The Gateway Family YMCA in Union County, NJ and has routinely advocated for grants from Phillips 66 to support the organization’s needs to provide accessible childcare. To honor her roots, Mansi is also actively involved in fundraising donations for US-based organizations focusing on improving access to healthcare, women’s education, and special needs’ necessities in the state of Gujarat, India.

Moreover, as a Rutgers University School of Engineering Alumni, Mansi continues to fuel her passion to lift others by leading the Rutgers Recruiting team at Phillips 66 to recruit talented engineering interns and holds workshops to help with résumé critiques and interview skills.

For her volunteerism efforts, Mansi has been highlighted by Phillips 66 HQ, American Fuel and Petroleum Manufacturers (AFPM), and Union County. Mansi continues to grow professionally and personally, living up to Phillips 66’s motto, “Providing Energy. Improving Lives.” She believes in serving the people with love and compassion and maintaining her honor and commitment to the community around her, both in Union County and India.

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Michelle Somers

Michelle Somers leads the marketing team at PSEG Long Island. She is responsible for generating customer engagement, satisfaction and participation in programs that save money and energy. Her previous roles include Electric Vehicles Manager where she led the development, marketing and administration of programs to drive EV adoption on Long Island.

Michelle served as President of the PSEG Long Island Women’s Network from 2020 through 2022, after serving as secretary since 2018. She is committed to the group’s mission of “women helping women” and is enthusiastic about developing new programs, content, and opportunities to serve and engage the membership and the community.

Prior to joining PSEG Long Island, Michelle managed marketing and technology projects for American Express, CMP Media, United Business Media and National Grid. Michelle earned a B.A. in Media & Communications, and an A.A. in Advertising & Communications from SUNY Empire State College.

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Chiung-Yao (Angela) Wu

Chiung-Yao is the Manager – Renewables/Green Programs at PSEG. She is responsible for financial and regulatory accounting and reporting.


Sonia Oberoi

Sonia Oberoi received her Ph.D. in Macromolecular Chemistry from University of Dresden, Germany and has two master’s degrees in polymer science and technology and in chemistry from the Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi. She was an outstanding scholar throughout her academic life, received full scholarship from bachelor’s all the way to her Ph.D. and earned Suma Cum Laude for her thesis work.

Sonia started her career at General Electric Plastics division in Bangalore, India. She worked on polycarbonate nanocomposites which led to 2 patents.

In 2008, she moved to U.S. and joined Infineum. Over a successful 15 year career, Sonia has held multiple technical and leadership roles within Infineum. Sonia started as a Technologist and has since held leadership roles in Sales, Marketing, and Driveline, with each role taking on increasing responsibility.

Sonia took the challenge of improving fuel economy of engine oils, designed and developed a novel viscosity modifier which led to a highly profitable new blockbuster product, Infineum SV600. She was granted a patent for her research. Sonia then went on to co-create a high functionality dispersant which improved cleanliness of powertrain units and lowered the formulation cost of engine oils. Her novel research again led to 2 new patents.

Sonia has also co-authored a chapter on “Hydrogenated Styrene-Diene Copolymer Viscosity Modifiers” in Lubricant Additives, Chemistry and Applications, Third Edition.

In addition to technology roles, Sonia has served in the role of Sales Compliance Advisor, Sales Account Manager and Project Manager for business transformation, driving customer centricity and smart complexity optimization initiatives. In her current role, as the Technology Manager for driveline fluids, Sonia leads a team of engineers and scientists focused on new generation of e-fluids for electric vehicles.

Sonia is an active leader in safety. She is the sponsor for the Site Regulatory Compliance framework, ensuring full compliance with applicable HSSE laws, regulations and permits. She also supports a variety of Inclusiveness and Diversity programs. Over the years, Sonia has mentored many young women scientists at Infineum.

Sonia is married to Atul Anand, Executive Director at JP Morgan & Chase, and has two beautiful children. Outside work, Sonia enjoys hiking, cooking, and drawing. She took up running 5 years ago and has run several marathons.

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Jennifer Perez

Detective Jennifer Perez was born in Elizabeth, NJ. She moved to California at the age of 7. She would continue to visit NJ for summers and holidays. She began working at a young age and loved helping others. When she graduated high school in 1996, she moved back to NJ. She was always a Jersey Girl at heart.

She worked as a bank teller from 1997-1998, and within a year would be promoted to Head Teller. She began her career with the Elizabeth Police Department in 1998 as a Dispatcher. In 2000, she would follow in her father’s footsteps and join the ranks as an Elizabeth Police Officer. In 2012 she became certified as a DARE Officer. She enjoyed her time working with the kids and being a positive role model. In 2020, she was promoted to Detective and is currently working in the Domestic Violence Unit.

She is the President of the Hispanic Law Enforcement Association of Union County, an organization founded by her father and a few other Officers. During the pandemic, the organization was unable to hold any fundraisers. Jennifer began raising money and raffling prizes online. Initially it was to raise money for the organization to fulfill their scholarship commitments, but little did she know the difference it would make.

With the amount of money that was raised, not only did she fulfill the organization’s scholarships, but she was able to give enough to fulfill approximately 17 scholarships for various organizations. It didn’t stop there. Some of the other organizations that benefitted from these donations included the YWCA, music institutes, Police Explorers, youth groups, theater programs, sports teams, cheerleaders, and sponsored some students for prom. She donated gift cards, clothes, food, and furniture to families that lost everything during the floods and some that lost it all in fires. Backpack drives, turkey drives, Christmas toys, 3 Kings and more.

She enjoys not only serving her community, but she also enjoys giving back to the community. As a single mom, she works hard to provide the best she can for her daughter. They enjoy traveling, beach days, attending concerts and shows. She makes it a point to teach her daughter that she can make a difference in this world one day at a time, and one person at a time.

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Jacqueline Racer-Desanctis

Jacqueline Racer-DeSanctis is an OR Program Consultant with PSEG Nuclear’s Organizational Effectiveness (OR) group. In this capacity, she is responsible for the coordination of high-impact, high-visibility leadership development projects and initiatives.

Jacqueline began her career at PSEG in 1986 and has contributed to a number of departments while taking on assignments with Outage Management and Performance Oversight.

In addition to her OR duties, Jacqueline has supported the PSEG Nuclear chapter of Women in Nuclear (WIN) since 2009, rotating through several executive posts. In 2012, she became a member of the United States National Metrics Committee and, over the course of several years, ascended from Secretary to Chair, during which time she mentored students and facilitated panel discussions at annual conferences.

In 2017, Jacqueline was nominated and appointed to the position of United States National WIN Region 1 Steering Committee Representative for a second three-year term. In 2019, she was selected to serve as Co-Chair of the nuclear industry’s Organizational Effectiveness Working Group. She is also a graduate of the Institute of Nuclear Operations First-Line Leadership Academy

Jacqueline holds an Associate’s Degree in Business Administration from Thomas Edison University and completed a Human Resources Certification Program with Villanova University. She is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Organizational Management.

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Myriam Ramirez

Myriam Ramirez came to the United States from Colombia in 1986, not knowing how to speak English but determined to make a better life for herself through hard work and determination. Two years after arriving, she enrolled in Bergen County Technical School and earned a degree in Women Working in Technology. In 1990, she was hired as an Apprentice Engineering Technician and began a career at PSE&G that has lasted over 33 years. During that time, she continued her education, earning her Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering Technology from the New Jersey Institute of Technology. This led to several promotions and her current role as Principal Engineer.

Myriam is described as a leader who is passionate about her work and possesses an important balance of technical and people skills. Her commitment to success and desire for continuous improvement has led to progress and change in her division. On an important reliability upgrade project, Myriam leaned into her past experiences and planning skills to provide practical instruction to the workforce, enabling the division to be ahead of of schedule and on target to meet its 2023 goals.

Myriam has been married to her husband, Ruben, for 22 years. They have two children, Kayla, who is completing her senior year at The College of New Jersey next fall, and their son Nicholas will attend Ramapo College.

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Jayashree Rao

Jayashree (Jay-ah-sh-ree) Rao, affectionately known as “Jay”, is a first generation immigrant from India that is guided by the quote above in her personal and professional lives. She moved to the United States in 1991 with a Master’s Degree in Commerce and pursued a profession as a Certified Public Accountant. Early on in her career, Jay saw a need and started doing pro-bono tax returns for anyone who could not afford it. After completing extensive training in ERP software development, in 2001 Jay transitioned to a new profession as an Applications Developer at Horizon BCBSNJ. After working in several roles, she now holds the position as Lead Business Systems Analyst in the Enterprise Business and Technology Solutions department. Jay’s primary responsibility in this role is managing the Workday Application and supporting all of Horizon’s Human Resources related operations.

Since the beginning of her career with Horizon, Jay has been keen on sharing her culture within the Company in an effort to increase diversity awareness. She has been an active member of Horizon’s Asian American Affinity Group and held numerous positions and now serves as the President of the affinity group. She is passionate about giving back to the community and believes it is one of life’s purposes. As an affinity group Leadership Team member, Jay led the effort and collected hundreds of bed sheets, mattress protectors, and personal care items for those living in a homeless shelter. In her personal time each year she participates in an annual toy drive to make sure over 30 children under the care of New Jersey’s Division of Youth and Family Services have a wonderful holiday. Volunteering and giving back means a lot to Jay and is at the core of who she is. During the pandemic, she volunteered to assist with various pop-up vaccination clinics, and distributed fresh produce in many under-served communities. In Jay’s own words, “The time I spend volunteering is when I feel most useful and purpose driven. Knowing that the little I do means so much to someone else is both humbling and energizing at the same time.”

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Carolina Rozewski

Carolina Rozewski is the Assistant Vice President, Community Development Officer at Peapack-Gladstone Bank. She is responsible for partnering with community organizations serving low- and moderate-income individuals in majority/minority census tracts within the Bank’s assessment area and delivering financial literacy workshops to the community.

Mrs. Rozewski joined Peapack-Gladstone Bank in 2012, previously serving the Bank as Assistant Vice President, Compliance Officer in Enterprise Risk Management where she was responsible for monitoring the Identity Theft Red Flags Program, managing the Privacy Policy and customer notifications, and oversight of consumer complaints, Compliance procedures and HMDA (Home Mortgage Disclosure Act) data. Prior to her work as an HMDA and CRA (Community Reinvestment Act) Analyst, she assisted the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) department in compiling enhanced due diligence, KYC Customer Identification Procedures, and contributed to audits and regulatory exams. Leading up to Mrs. Rozewski’s compliance work, she served as a Mortgage Loan Processor in residential lending and as the Assistant Branch Manager and Universal Banker at the Bank’s Chatham location. Mrs. Rozewski is recognized as a Peapack-Gladstone Bank Emerging Leader.

Mrs. Rozewski holds an Associates Degree in Liberal Arts/International Studies from the County College of Morris and is fluent in Spanish.

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Kate Kelliher-Wessel

Kate Kelliher-Wessel is Director of Technology Business Management for PSEG. Technology Business Management works collaboratively within business teams to ensure the successful development and delivery of IT systems and services to optimize value for the business. She leads a team performing change and release management, IT assurance, vendor management, performance management, testing and QA, transformation processes & tools, the ServiceNow platform, and IT asset management.

Kate previously was the Manager Business Performance & Intelligence within the Continuous Improvement organization, where she acted as an internal consultant. In this role Kate managed large Enterprise initiatives such as the Fossil divestiture and Responsible Reentry. Kate has been integral in defining and implementing the Continuous Improvement strategy for the Enterprise through multiple transitions; including the most recent shifts to focus on business performance and value stream management. Prior to joining the CI organization, Kate was a member of the Fossil Finance team.

Prior to joining PSEG, she worked as an external consultant driving cross-functional process improvements to realize financial benefits.

Kate has a Bachelor of Science in Business Finance & Economics from Marist College and a Master of Business Administration in Supply Chain Management from Rutgers University.

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Kathryn Lynch

Kathryn Lynch began her career with the YWCA Union County as an intern in the STEP workforce development program nearly 10 years ago. Since the internship, Kathryn has been promoted numerous times holding positions such as Job Specialist, STEP Coordinator and then later held the position of Director of CSS for nearly 5 years. In May 2022, she was promoted to Assistant Executive Director. Under her leadership, Kathryn has mentored both new and experienced staff throughout the YWCA helping all further the mission of empowering women and eliminating racism. Kathryn Lynch has a Bachelor of Social Work and a Master of Social Work from Seton Hall University, and a Doctorate of Social Work from Capella University.

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Waltasia Mansano

Waltasia Mansano assumed the role as Manager of the PSE&G Clean Energy Jobs Program in February 2021. Since joining PSE&G in 2001, she has acquired a broad background that spans program implementation, cybersecurity, strategic planning, and balanced scorecard development.

In her current role, she is responsible for leading a team with the objective of generating economic opportunities for up to 2,000 unemployed, under-employed, low/middle-income New Jersey residents; creating and expanding opportunities for diverse suppliers in delivery of energy efficiency programs; and engaging in ongoing collaboration with the newly created NJ Council on Green Economy.

To date, the program is ahead of schedule with more than 2,200 hired into the industry. The program has trained and upskilled approximately 400 employees to foster long-term careers and a pathway to career growth. In addition, the program has also facilitated two cohorts of the On-the-Job Training Program resulting in 24 graduates from the program being placed in full-time positions. Most recently, the program was issued a national award from the Association of Energy Services Professionals for the work PSE&G is doing to meet the growing need for skilled workers in New Jersey’s energy efficiency industry.

A Cum Laude graduate of Seton Hall University with a Bachelor of Science in Management Information Systems, Waltasia also holds a Masters’ Degree from Stevens Institute of Technology in Information Systems. She is also a certified Project Management Professional (PMP®). Waltasia has been married for nearly 20 years and has two children.

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Nominating Sponsorships

Presenting Sponsor: $15,000
TWIN Award nominations for up to 8 individuals for a TWIN Award, 40 tickets to awards breakfast, logo on all TWIN marketing materials including event website, event signage and invitation, a 25 second ad in the digital journal, special thank you at event and in all press releases, and an opportunity for a representative from the organization to say a few words at awards breakfast (1-2 minutes).

Champion Sponsor: $10,000
TWIN Award nominations for up to 6 individuals, 30 tickets to awards breakfast, logo on TWIN marketing materials including event website, event signage and invitation, and a 20 second ad in the digital journal.

Partner Sponsor: $5,000
TWIN Award nominations for up to 2 individuals, 10 tickets to awards breakfast, logo on TWIN marketing materials including event website and invitation, and a 5 second ad in the digital journal.

Patron: $2,500
TWIN Award nominations for 1 individual, 5 tickets to awards breakfast, logo on TWIN marketing materials including event website and invitation, and a 5 second ad in the digital journal.

Non-Profit Nominee: $500
(This is a special category for Union County non-profit organizations.)
TWIN Award nominations for 1 individual, 2 tickets to awards breakfast, logo on TWIN marketing materials including event website and invitation, and a 5 second ad in the digital journal.

Additional Sponsorship Opportunities

Breakfast: $5,000
5 tickets to awards breakfast, recognition on event signage, digital journal and website

Production: $3,000
3 tickets to awards breakfast, recognition on event signage, digital journal and website

Awards: $2,000
2 tickets to awards breakfast, recognition on event signage, digital journal and website

Décor: $1,500
2 tickets to awards breakfast, recognition on event signage, digital journal and website
Individual Awards Breakfast Tickets: $150

Please complete sponsorship form below and send a copy with payment to YWCA Union County, PO Box # 462 Kenilworth NJ 07033 (checks made payable to YWCA Union County.) If you would like to make other payment arrangements, please contact us at events@YWCAunioncounty.org

Awards Sponsorship Form

Tickets

Ticket sales are now closed. The last day to purchase tickets was May 1, 2023

 

Frequenty Asked Questions

Definitions:

  • Nominator: An Individual or organization that is nominating a candidate to be considered for the TWIN Award
  • Nominee: An individual who is being proposed and considered for a TWIN Award
  • Honoree: A selected nominee who will receive one of 5 TWIN Awards

How many nominations can my company submit?
The number of nominations a company can submit is based on the sponsorship support level that has been selected.

Is there any fee to a for submitting nominations?
Yes, there is a fee for submitting nominations. Please see sponsorship support levels.

When will I learn if my nominee has been selected as an honoree?
Nominators will be informed if their nominee has been selected as an Award Honoree at the event on May 11.

How do we support the event without a nominee?
We are thrilled that you are considering partnering with the YWCA of Union County as a sponsor of the TWIN Awards. Please see additional sponsorship opportunities or contact us at events@YWCAunioncounty.org. Your participation in the TWIN Awards not only helps celebrate the spectacular women within your organization, it also helps raise critical funds to support the programs and services of YWCA.

Can I purchase a ticket to attend the event?
Yes individual tickets are available to the awards breakfast for $150 each. Please contact at events@YWCAunioncounty.org to reserve your seat.