Spectacular Limited Raffle

The Spectacular Limited Raffle is part of the 23rd Anniversary Celebration at the 2016 Partner in Excellence Award Dinner.

The raffle is LIMITED to 500 tickets.

Tickets are available by mail until April; 4, 2016 or by calling (732) 254-3233. Please make check payable to EBEF. Send to EBEF Incredible Raffle, 760 Route 18, East Brunswick, New Jersey, 08816.  Click here for order form

+First Prize         New York Yankees Legends Seats

Tickets for Two including Lounge with food and parking Donated by Anthony Yoseloff Value $1,200

+Second Prize 18-hole Round of Golf for a Foursome

at TPC Jasna Polana, complete with complimentary greens and cart fees. Donated by Paul Shur Value $1,000

+Third Prize         18-hole Round of Golf for a Foursome

at Forsgate Country Club complete with complimentary greens and cart fees Donated by Frank LaDuca $750

+Fourth Prize Dine Around Gift Certificates value $5oo

+Fifth Prize         Samsung 32″ LED Television

Donated by: See-More Appliances Value: $325

Raffle tickets will also be sold and the winner drawn at the Partner in Excellence Award Dinner on Tuesday, April 12, 2016. You do not need to be present to win.

No substitution of the offered prize may be made and no cash will be given in lieu of the prize.

Raffle PIE2016


2016 Partner in Excellence will honor Dr. Steve Susskind

Dr. Steve Susskind has been a member and Board Trustee of the East Brunswick Education Foundation since 2007 and a contributor since 1997. He has been acting as an EBEF-Student Association mentor since its inception in 2011.

Dr. Susskind is a General, Cosmetic, Restorative and Family Dentist who opened his practice in East Brunswick in 1996 after working in New York City for four years. Dr. Susskind attended Rutgers University in New Brunswick and knew that he would eventually return to this area to settle with his family. After graduating from Rutgers, he then attended UMDNJ-New Jersey Dental School in Newark. Upon graduation he became the Chief Dental Resident at his General Practice Residency Program at the East Orange Veterans Administration Medical Center.

Dr. Susskind is a life-long member of the American Dental Association, Academy of General Dentistry, New Jersey Dental Association and Middlesex County Dental Society. He was a founding member and officer for the Centric Dental Study Club as well as Vice-President and Treasurer of the Brunswick Dental Study Club. He was a past member of the Newark Dental Study Club and the Academy of Sports Dentistry. While living and working in New York City, Dr. Susskind was the Dentist for the Athletic Department of New York University. He currently holds a position on the State of New Jersey Peer Review Committee.

Steve’s sense of community started almost as soon as he moved to East Brunswick in 1996. He volunteered his time and experience to coaching the youth of our community for the EB Baseball League, EB Soccer Club and EB Fast Break Basketball. Steve was elected by his peers to be the SAGE Representative (Set A Good Example) for a statewide travel soccer team for a record seven consecutive years.

Steve’s commitment to the community and to the future leaders of East Brunswick is the perfect reason as to why he has become so involved with the EBEF-Student Association. He helps interview the students seeking Executive Board positions on the EBEF-SA. He also helps foster valuable skills by motivating and encouraging students to effectively communicate with local businesses for the annual fundraising dinner. Along with his dedicated team at Susskind Dental, the Student Association has raised over $5,000 in donations from local restaurants toward the much desired “Dine-Around-Town” raffle at tonight’s Partners in Excellence event.

Steve and his wife Hilarie have raised their three children here and have gone through the East Brunswick Public School system. Their daughter Danielle is attending the School of Education at Syracuse University. She is currently studying abroad in Madrid, Spain. Julia is a senior at EBHS and will be attending Syracuse University in the Fall. Julia was on the EBHS bowling team for four years and earned a Varsity letter. Their son Bradley is currently a sophomore at EBHS. He has been on the EBHS soccer team for the past two years. Bradley is also a volunteer on the EB Rescue Squad. This proves that altruism and volunteering “doesn’t fall far from the tree.”

2016 Partner in Excellence will honor Dr. V. Raja Bandaru

Dr. Bandaru (Raja) was born in India and is a long term resident of East Brunswick having moved here in 1984 because of the congenial atmosphere and good school system. Having lived in East Brunswick for 30 plus years, he feels that moving here is one of the finest decisions he made. Raja and his family have been actively involved in East Brunswick in-school and extracurricular activities, have raised money for various school activities, and have been major donors to the EBEF.

Raja is also involved in cultural, educational and interfaith activities in the community, serving as a Hindu Chaplain at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital and at University Medical Center of Princeton at Plainsboro. He also teaches at the University of Pennsylvania and Rutgers University.

Dr. Bandaru has a Bachelor of Engineering with Honors (SV University), Master of Technology (IIT Kharagpur) and Ph.D. (IIT Delhi) in Electrical and Control Systems Engineering and a professional diploma in Accounting and Finance (England). He was a Fellow of Royal Statistical Society, England.

Dr. Bandaru is the founder of Trinity Consultants, Inc., a 30+ year New Jersey based telecommunications management consulting and systems integration company. Trinity also provides business, financial and technical support for prospective new entrepreneurs. He was also the founder of several startup companies in biomedical, electronics, and telecommunications.

Dr. Bandaru was a member of the faculty of electrical engineering at Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Kharagpur, India and IIT Delhi before moving to England where he worked for 10 years in areas of digital process control, systems engineering and development, and manufacture of optical fiber technology.

Dr. Bandaru was a member of the team that harnessed the development and manufacture of optical fiber technology in England – one of the first teams in the world to do so. He was a pioneering member of the team that initiated and developed network management systems for telecommunications and services at Bell Laboratories. Dr. Bandaru initiated and managed research, product and technology development in biomedical engineering.

Dr. Bandaru has published and lectured extensively in the areas of biomedical engineering, telecommunications, control engineering, management science, Vedanta and Indic studies. He has received several awards and honors in his educational and professional career including the title of Veda Vidya Rakshak (Protector of Vedic Knowledge) by the World Association of Vedic Studies (WAVES) in July 2006.
Dr. Bandaru is a keen student of Telegu literature (one of the languages of India with roots as early as 4th Century BCE), Sanskrit, ancient Indian history, philosophy and evolution of Indian culture through the ages. He teaches Sanskrit and Hinduism, and has authored five books on Sanskrit grammar. He often represents Hinduism at interfaith meetings and is keenly involved in the development of youth.

Raja and his wife Lakshmi are proud parents of four children, all who graduated from the EB school system. Their daughter Padmaja, a 1986 graduate of EBHS, graduated from Rutgers with a BS and from the Washington University Medical School, St. Louis with a MS in Occupational Therapy; their son Kishore, a 1988 graduate of EBHS, graduated with a BS in Business from Keane University; their son Venu, a 1989 graduate of EBHS, graduated with a BS in Engineering from the University of Arizona, Tucson; and their youngest son Krishna, a 1989 graduate of EBHS, graduated with a BS and MS in electrical engineering from Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN.



2016 Partner in Excellence will honor Jeffrey Lesser

For the previous eight years of Partner in Excellence Award Dinners, Jeff Lesser would have been the trumpet player in the lobby performing with the Admin Quartet. His love of music and the arts in general led him to a thirty-five year career in the public schools, having served the students of New Jersey as a music teacher and high school Band Director, Department Chair, and Supervisor in two school districts. He retired in July of 2015 as East Brunswick’s Supervisor of Arts Education.

Jeff began playing the trumpet and took an interest in music theory and arranging during high school. He studied music education at Trenton State College, and became a music composition student. These studies eventually led to a premiere of his first symphony. In 1977, he pursued his Master of Music in Music Composition at Temple University and received his degree in 1979. While beginning his pursuit of a doctoral degree, he took his first job as an assistant band director for East Windsor Regional Schools. Once in front of a band, he loved the “esprit du corps” and the process of music education.

In 1985, Jeff took the position of Director of Bands for John F. Kennedy High School in Willingboro (his high school alma mater), and later moved to Willingboro High School. During his 22 year tenure, Jeff lead a 150 member high school marching band and 120 member concert band program through a variety of classic and contemporary compositions. The success of the Jazz Bands was notable, being named a New Jersey State Finalist in all but one year of his twenty two years, and taking his bands to the Berklee College of Music High School Jazz Festival (the largest one day high school jazz festival in the world). Here the band would be a twelve-time finalist, with six first places achieved. Jeff was named the New Jersey Jazz Educator of the year in 1997 and received the Burlington County NAACP Distinguished Service Award in 2000.

In 2007, Jeff came to East Brunswick with a vision of empowering his staff for excellence. With the support of administration and the EBEF, he initiated the Arts Education Concert Series, with professional and world-class performers engaging our students and the community through workshops and concerts in our EBPAC. Some of these groups have included the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra, New York Voices, the Shanghai String Quartet, and the United States Air Force Concert Band and Singing Sergeants.

Under his leadership, all eleven schools were identified in the top 10% of the New Jersey Arts Education census, and East Brunswick High School was named a New Jersey Model School for the Arts. Program offerings were expanded and enrollment in the arts grew. During the first year of the census, EBHS arts enrollment topped 81%, while the state average stood at less than 48%.

Now an adjunct professor at Rowan College of Burlington County, Jeff resides in Delran with his wife Ilene and their dog “Maestro”. Their five children, Danielle, Aimee, Dan, Melissa, and Andrew have all met with great success, with Aimee a member of the Chittick faculty and Andrew completing his degree in Music Education.

2016 Partner in Excellence will honor Mariann Zema

Mariann Zema has worked as a speech and language specialist in East Brunswick for twenty seven years. In 1992, Mariann was the recipient of the Governor’s Award for Outstanding Teacher at Lawrence Brook School. In 1993, Mariann played an instrumental role in starting East Brunswick’s Speech/Language Program for students who are on the autistic spectrum. For the past twenty-three years, Mariann’s caseload has mainly consisted of students on the autism spectrum. Her passion to understand her students was the catalyst for her to establish a home program in other communities to improve the lives of individuals with autism and their families. For twenty years, three nights a week, Mariann provided a total home-based program designed to teach functional life skills. In 2002, Mariann was the recipient of the Autism New Jersey/COSAC Teacher of the Year Award for her dedication to individuals with autism and their families both in East Brunswick and in other communities. For the past thirteen years, Mariann has been at the helm of organizing East Brunswick’s district-wide Denim Day for Autism Awareness. During the month of April, building representatives from each school give generously of their time to assist Mariann in informing the community about how we can ensure safe and fulfilling lives fr individuals with autism, their families and the professionals who support them. The proceeds from this event are shared equally with Autism New Jersey and the East Brunswick Education Foundation. Throughout the years Mariann has actively pursued EBEF grants to assist her in providing new and stimulating materials for her speech and language sessions. Mariann has often said that a grand bag of tricks is required to provide therapy that is effective, stimulating, and fun!
Over the years, EBEF grants have provided such materials. Mariann and her colleagues have received grants that have helped students with receptive/expressive language, auditory processing, phonological awareness skills, apraxia, vocabulary, and social skills. Mariann describes how she feels about the EBEF with a quote from the French philosopher, Voltaire: Appreciation is a wonderful thing. It makes what is excellent in others belong to us as well. Mariann shows her commitment to the EBEF by attending the Fall Fashion Show and several times has read a book at the Barnes & Noble Book Fair, where a percentage of all sales are donated to benefit the EBEF. All of the time spent helping others would not have been possible without the help of her husband Leonard. While managing his own painting business, he has always been supp ortive, caring and a wonderful cook! They have been married for 38 years and have three sons. Their son Nicholas provides social media support to small businesses as an independent sales/marketing rep. for MaxExposure. Lenny Jr. works for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and is married to Rosaria who works in Human Resources at Pearson. Michael is a Manager of Analyst Relations for Amdocs and is married to Jennifer Zema, a Speech and Language Specialist in our district. The newest edition to the Zema family is William Joseph born to Jenny and Michael on August 17, 2015.