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Chris Daggett To Retire As President of Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation In September

originally published: 06/07/2018

Chris Daggett To Retire As President of Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation In September(MORRISTOWN,NJ) -- After eight years leading one of New Jersey’s largest and most well-known philanthropic organizations, Chris Daggett is retiring as president and CEO of the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation on September 1.

Under Daggett’s leadership, the Foundation recently completed a strategic plan that envisions an equitable New Jersey. The new vision and mission, and the refreshed goals and strategies, move Dodge boldly in a new direction more reflective of the current and rapidly changing demographics and needs of the state.

“I am very excited about the strategic plan, and believe it will enable Dodge to help citizens and nonprofit organizations become more engaged in their communities and more inclusive in their work. I have been fortunate to be involved in this important shift in priorities and now leave to my successor the challenges and opportunities of implementing the plan,” Daggett said.

During his tenure, Daggett also built on the Foundation’s leadership position in arts, education, environment, poetry, and technical assistance training to nonprofit organizations in the state. In addition, out of concern for the national dramatic downsizing and closing of many newspaper companies, he initiated and led a greatly expanded focus of Dodge on local news and information through a new Informed Communities program.

“The Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation and, more importantly, the people of New Jersey have benefited from Chris’ dedication to the state, its arts, environment and education,” said Board chair Christopher “Kim” Elliman. “Chris’ signature achievements were in orchestrating the philanthropic commitment to fostering an ecosystem for local news, for the response and rebuilding after Hurricane Sandy, and for the increased focus on training STEM teachers for New Jersey’s schools. Chris worked tirelessly to make New Jersey a better place to live and work, from the urban north to the rural south of the state, recognizing the broad diversity of New Jersey and crafting a more equitable society. We are grateful for his eight-plus years and for all that he has and will continue to do for this state.”



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Established in 1974 through the generosity of Geraldine Rockefeller Dodge, the Foundation provides financial and technical support to nonprofit organizations throughout New Jersey. It also presents biennially the largest poetry festival in the country, bringing together the world’s most acclaimed poets including numerous U.S. Poets Laureate and winners of virtually every major poetry award. On October 18-21, the Festival will be held in Newark for the fifth consecutive time.

Since Daggett started in 2010, the Foundation has awarded more than $90 million in grants to hundreds of organizations. It also has received recognition for its work in the Informed Communities program through nearly $5 million in funding from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation and the Democracy Fund. In addition, Daggett raised over $10 million of support from other foundations in New Jersey and New York City for Dodge’s work in helping five New Jersey universities revamp their Master’s degree teacher training programs in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM, and, when adding the arts, STEAM), through the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation.

In 2012, Dodge and the Community Foundation of New Jersey raised over $7 million to assist victims of Hurricane Sandy, providing support for mid- and long-term recovery. The New Jersey Recovery Fund helped with important efforts of land-use planning and social and mental health services, among other means of support beyond immediate needs of food, clothing and shelter provided by local, county, state, and federal emergency relief organizations.

“Working for the Dodge Foundation has been a remarkable opportunity for which I am most grateful. I am proud of the staff and trustees for all that we have been able to accomplish together, and look forward to following the work of the Foundation,” Daggett added. "I am committed to identifying other opportunities and challenges that allow me to continue contributing to the well-being of the state. "

Prior to coming to Dodge, Daggett served as Deputy Chief of Staff and Cabinet Secretary to Governor Thomas H. Kean, Region 2 Administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and Commissioner of the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection. He also was a managing director of William E. Simon & Sons and a principal at JM Sorge Environmental Consultants. He has served on numerous nonprofit boards in education, the environment, and public policy over the past 25 years. Currently, he serves on the boards of the Schumann Fund for New Jersey and the Hudson River Foundation. In 2009, he ran as an independent candidate for governor.

Daggett will stay through the summer months to ensure a smooth transition of leadership, and will be available as needed afterwards to provide help to the Foundation.




Nikolina Kovalenko’s Artwork on Display in Watchung
(SUMMIT, NJ) -- Artist Nikolina Kovalenko is interested in humanity’s vanishing connection with nature and the consequences our everyday actions have on the environment. That fascination provides the inspiration for her new exhibition, Reclamation, which will be on display at the Watchung Reservation’s Trailside Nature and Science Center, in Mountainside, NJ. Presented in partnership with the Visual Arts Center of New Jersey, this show will be on view from October 12, 2018–February 12, 2019.
Artist As Entrepreneur: Business Skills For Artists
(HAMMONTON, NJ) -- Creative Capital and South Jersey Cultural Alliance in partnership with the New Jersey State Council on the Arts presents The Artist as Entrepreneur Series from October 2018 through April 2019. The series includes 8 sessions to provide the business skills, tools and networking opportunities to artist so they may build financially healthy and sustainable careers.  It is sponsored by the Thrive South Initiative of New Jersey Community Capital.
Artist Talk: Kevin Blythe Sampson in Conversation with Renee Stout
(NEWARK, NJ) -- Artists Kevin Blythe Sampson and Renée Stout will have a conversation about their artwork, the themes represented therein, and their processes, on Thursday, October 25 from 6:00pm to 8:00pm at Rutgers University’s Box Gallery in Newark. 
Express Newark Awarded More Than $200,000 in Third Space Grants
(NEWARK, NJ) -- Express Newark announced the recipients of its inaugural Third Space Grants at a press conference on Wednesday, September 26. Express Newark is a conceptual framework and an interdisciplinary learning space where artists and community residents collaborate, experiment, and innovate in partnership with Rutgers University–Newark (RU-N) faculty, staff, and students to engage in creative practice, foster democratic dialogue, and promote positive transformation. The Third Space Grants, aggregating more than $200,000, afford Newark artists the opportunity to pursue their work with the RU-N community at Express Newark.
Rider University Art Gallery presents Mel Leipzig: Octogenarian
(LAWRENCEVILLE, NJ) -- The Rider University Art Gallery will present an exhibit of works by Mel Leipzig, titled Mel Leipzig: Octogenarian Wednesday September 26 through Friday, October 26.  Leipzig, born in Brooklyn in 1935, resides in Trenton, NJ.


Kevin Sampson: Solo Exhibitions In New Jersey and Beyond
“I’m a Civil Rights baby. I grew up laying across picket lines and blocking traffic.” Artist Kevin Sampson’s father, Stephen, was a well-known Civil Rights leader in New Jersey, and he instilled a commitment to community that his son still honors.
Basking Ridge Resident Returns to Matheny to Help Assist in Strategic Planning for 'This Amazing Place'
When Ellen Lambert was director of development at the Matheny School and Hospital in Peapack, NJ, from 1993 to 1995, one of her major achievements was the formation of a fundraising plan for what would eventually become the Robert Schonhorn Arts Center. The concept of Matheny's Arts Access Program  -- which enables people with disabilities to create art, assisted by professional artist-facilitators  -- was emerging in '93, and the arts center was eventually built in 2000.
City Without Walls and Aljira To Shine At Newark Arts Festival
Two long-running art spaces, City Without Walls (“cWOW”) and Aljira, A Center for Contemporary Art (“Aljira”), will house pop-up exhibits during the Newark Arts Festival, October 4-7, 2018.  Though both spaces are now in a period of transition, through the support of Newark Arts, they will activate with fresh exhibits during Newark’s citywide annual festival of the arts. 
The Healing Power of Art
Entering the office to see a neurologist can be a terrifying experience.  I know because I’ve had to do it for years.  Thankfully, when I see my doctor I am surrounded by his photographs on the walls. It’s more than a hobby for Dr. Noah Gilson, it’s a lifelong passion.
What Is The Artist’s Role In Gentrification?
About a year ago, I attended a local community meeting here in Newark for citizens concerned about the changing face of the city. You see, Brick City, after 50 years of neglect, economic disenfranchisement, and disproportionate criticism fueled by racism, xenophobia and class discrimination, is going through a revitalization. Or a “renaissance” if you’re the poetic type.






Event calendar
Wednesday, Oct 17, 2018


MUSIC

DON FELDER @ Bergen Performing Arts Center (bergenPAC), Englewood - 8:00pm

The Tenors: Fan Favorites Tour @ Mayo Performing Arts Center (MPAC), Morristown - 7:30pm

An Evening with Emily Saliers @ Pollak Theatre, West Long Branch - 7:30pm


THEATRE

The Shuck @ Cape May Stage, Cape May - 7:30pm

The Color Purple @ Paper Mill Playhouse, Millburn - 7:30pm

Auditions: A Charlie Brown Christmas @ Studio Playhouse Upper Montclair, Upper Montclair - 7:00pm







DANCE

So You Think You Can Dance Live! 2018 @ Count Basie Center For The Arts, Red Bank - 7:00pm

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