Montclair is mourning the loss of longtime resident Judy Weston, who passed away on Friday, October 9. She was 87.
Organizations are paying tribute to Weston, including WNET and NJTV, who describe Weston as “a wonderful humanitarian, great supporter of the Arts and Education, and a champion of public television,” as well as New Jersey Performing Arts Center and the National Dance Institute.
The Westons established and funded the Weston Awards for 25 years, recognizing excellent Montclair Public Schools teachers. They also made possible the Weston Science Scholars Program, a partnership between Montclair State University and Montclair Public Schools.
Montclair remembers, celebrates and honors the life of Judy Weston:
“Judy Weston managed seamlessly to combine determination, strong views, a solid moral center, generosity, and graciousness all within one lovely person. She was one of those people who everyone was better for knowing. She will be deeply missed, but those who knew her will not be able to be sad when they think of her. Memories of Judy will always bring a smile to one’s face.” — Susan Cole, President, Montclair State University
“The Montclair Board of Education was saddened to learn of the recent passing of Judy Weston. We send our heartfelt condolences to the Weston Family. Judy Weston is appreciated by the Montclair Public Schools through her involvement with the Weston Scholars, our Robotics program, and other contributions. For many years, individual Montclair Teachers and Staff were celebrated as recipients of a generous Weston Award. The Weston Awards were Judy Weston’s special ‘Thank You’ for the work of our teachers and staff. The Montclair Board of Education will be making a donation in her memory to Community Food Bank of New Jersey. We extend our sympathies to the Family. We will remember her fondly.” — Latifah Jannah, President, Montclair Board of Education
“Although I never had the pleasure of meeting Judy Weston, I hear that she had a warm and compassionate heart. Her generosity and zeal for helping students, families and teachers at Montclair Public Schools is truly a legacy. For 25 years she and her husband Josh Weston honored teachers with a monetary prize recognizing them as distinguished Weston Award winners. Her contributions to our schools and community run deep as she was instrumental with funding the Weston Scholars program which afforded our students an avenue to attend courses at Montclair State University, and she was always willing to help out our robotics programs. We extend our heartfelt condolences to the Weston family and treasure our memories of her not just because of her philanthropy but because of her kind and caring spirit.” — Dr. Jonathan Ponds, Superintendent, Montclair Public Schools
“Montclair Film is one among many local organizations to benefit from Judy’s generosity. Judy was a frequent and always smiling guest at our matinee Cinema + Conversation film series, festival screenings, and special events. We send our love to Josh and their family, and will remember Judy as an elegant, kind, cherished, and generous friend. Judy will be missed, and will be remembered fondly, as her imprint on the community will be felt for years to come.” — Montclair Film
“Judy was an independent spirit and a wonderful friend to many and to the Museum. She loved and supported MAM and its educational mission for years. Together, Judy and her husband Josh were benefactors of the Weston Gallery and members of the Constable Society. Our hearts go out to her family at this time. — Montclair Art Museum
“We’re so very sorry to hear of Judy Weston’s passing this weekend. Mrs. Weston, along with her husband Josh, have been generous donors to Montclair Ambulance Unit for many years. We chose to honor them at our 2015 St. Patrick’s Day Celebration for their support, as well as their philanthropy to the community. Judy’s caring spirit and amazing kindness will be missed around Montclair. Our thoughts are with the family at this time.” — Montclair Ambulance Unit
“Judy Weston lived a life full of caring for others and offering support where needed. While she will rightfully be remembered for the many wonderful things she did and the character of who she was, as an educator myself, I want to acknowledge and thank her for the many ways she honored and supported students and teachers, staff and administrators and education as a whole.
From her focus on STEAM (Science Technology Engineering Arts Math) education to her commitment to life-long learning, at the earliest stages all through adulthood, Judy Weston made and continues to make a difference in the lives of generations of student-learners.
We all owe her a debt of gratitude, for which she would likely only ask we pay if forward, helping where we can to make a positive difference in the lives of others.” — Sean Spiller, Montclair Mayor
“Judy and Josh have contributed so much to our great public schools in Montclair through their foundation. Judy was an inspiration to me while I served as Mayor & a hero to our teachers during all my years on the Council. She will be sorely missed.” — Bob Russo, Councilor-At-Large
“I have known Judy over many years as a generous supporter of the Montclair Public Schools, through the Weston Teachers Awards and also through her support to the Montclair Fund For Education Excellence. I recall an event I helped run for MFEE, Ladies’ Night Out. Judy had to leave a little early. It was pouring rain, and she left me her raffle tickets she bought and said if she won anything, to give the prize to someone. Well, she won a large, live palm tree that had more than a dozen gift cards to local stores hanging from it. I knew Judy would love this and the next morning, Cyndee Rowan and I went to her house to deliver the tree (it was really heavy). She was so gracious, kind and excited about winning the tree, but she was overwhelmed with gratitude that we took the time and effort to deliver her prize to her home.” — Robin Schlager, Second Ward Councilor.