Baristanet Profile: Elizabeth Ruebman

photo credit: Ron Holtz Photography

Name: Elizabeth “E” Ruebman 

Where do you live? Montclair, near downtown

When did you move there? 2008

Where did you grow up? The People’s Republic of Berkeley, CA 

How do you make a living? OR What is your everyday passion? 

I am the Deputy Director of the Newark Community Street Team, Newark’s community based violence reduction initiative. We operate in the South Ward of Newark and provide high risk intervention and casework to those at risk of being a victim or perpetrator of violence. I do policy work about violence reduction and victimization. 

Coffee, tea or … ? Three double shots of espresso a day. (I work two jobs and raise three teens and run a house by myself and I have an auto immune disorder.)

What’s your idea of a perfect weekend day? A weekend with no work! Listening to WBGO Rhythm Review, gardening in my hippie garden, chilling with my kids, taking a nap to go out dancing. 

What’s your favorite local restaurant? 

I’m vegan, gluten free, and I don’t use disposables so I rarely eat out. If I do, it is usually in Newark (Burger Walla! Bragman’s!), but in Montclair I like Caribbean Touch on Orange Road or the Water Bar on Valley Road.

What’s on your nightstand? A pile of books I never read! I’m finishing Decolonizing Wealth and re-reading When They Call You a Terrorist.  

What are you listening to? 

Anyone who knows me knows I listen to jazz on WBGO all day. I am obsessed with Kamasi Washington and all soul and r&b.  I commute to Trenton two days a week and Malcolm Gladwell is my new boyfriend.

What are your current indulgences? 

Montclair Kundalini Yoga is my escape, and live music is really my only indulgence. I have Lionel Richie tickets next week, and I’m seeing Kamasi twice this summer.

What talent you would most like to have? Any musical ability. At all. I am tone deaf.

What’s the worst-kept (or best-kept!) secret about Montclair? 

That we are part of New Jersey! I am always stunned that people don’t know where the Raritan Bay is. Or the Pinelands. Or have never been to Trenton.  

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