Earl Mosley Teaches Men to Dance

BY  |  Thursday, Jul 28, 2016 12:30pm

Screen Shot 2016-07-28 at 9.16.03 AMWhen Earl Mosley works with men who have never danced before, he wants to put them at ease. “The first thing you don’t want to do is tell a man to put on a pair of tights,” he said.

Now one of New York’s most respected dance teachers and choreographers, and the founder of Hearts of Men, a summer intensive dance program at Montclair State University, Mosley himself had no dance experience when during his senior year of high school in Raleigh, N.C., a friend dared him to take a dance class. He took her up on the dare and became hooked for life, later getting accepted – with no formal training – to the University of North Carolina School of the Arts.

“I guess they saw something,” he said. “That’s why I believe in helping young men understand that there is no experience required for dancing.”

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Citizen’s Police Academy in Montclair Teaches Residents About Police Work

BY  |  Thursday, Jul 21, 2016 12:30pm

Screen Shot 2016-07-21 at 6.19.02 AMLast month, Acting Chief of Police Todd Conforti and members of the Montclair Police Department’s Community Service Unit (CSU) presented the Citizen’s Police Academy Class with their certificates of completion.

The Citizen’s Police Academy is a free 10-week program for residents who want to learn more about the police department and its role in the community. Classes are led by certified law enforcement officers from the Montclair Police Department, as well as officers from other agencies.

While the program offers no police certification, it provides citizens with a better understanding of modern police practices. Participants gain an insight to the functions and responsibilities of police departments as well as criminal law and legal procedure.

Resident Helen Conley took the class because with a doctorate in racial conflict and a background in social issues, she wanted to get a better understanding of the workings in the police department. She was highly impressed with the program and praised officers Tyrone Williams and Travis Davis for going out of their way to make the program “a knock out.” Continue Reading

Operation Backpack Returns

BY  |  Thursday, Jul 21, 2016 10:30am

Operation BackpackOperation Backpack is a nationwide program run by Volunteers of America that provides school supplies and backpacks to kids in need. This year, Kimya Nilsen is once again leading the effort to collect supplies in the Montclair area, and is seeking donations from families that are able to help. Supply lists are divide by grade level and you can choose whichever you like.

Here is how it works: Continue Reading

Montclair Law Firm to Represent Gretchen Carlson in Case Against Roger Ailes

BY  |  Thursday, Jul 07, 2016 8:34pm

Screen Shot 2016-07-07 at 5.39.02 PMFormer Fox News anchor Gretchen Carlson has retained lawyer Nancy Erika Smith, a partner at Montclair’s Smith Mullin, for her sexual harassment suit against Fox News CEO Roger Ailes.

According to Bloomberg Law, Smith has “numerous million-dollars settlements to her credit and (is) a former Big Law attorney.” Smith is a partner at Smith Mullin which, according to its website, represents “employees who are the victims of discrimination based on age, sex, race, national origin, marital status, religion, veteran’s status, sexual orientation or handicap. The firm also represents victims of retaliation for their blowing the whistle on employer misconduct, or objecting to discrimination or retaliation.” The firm, and its attorneys, have been listed on many “best of” lists.

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MSU Summer Boot Camp Helps Inner City Kids Learn Journalism

BY  |  Thursday, Jun 30, 2016 11:30am

Photo by Thomas E. Franklin

When Professor Kelly Whiteside came to Montclair State University two years ago, she was wowed by two things: the brand new School of Communication and Media, and the university’s diverse student body. Inspired by these two factors, Whiteside and a group of professors came up with the idea of launching a journalism boot camp program for high school kids from less advantaged backgrounds.

The three-day program, which launched on Tuesday and drew 20 students from Paterson and Orange, aims to encourage high-performing students from diverse backgrounds to pursue careers in journalism, and to foster deeper relationships and expanded civic engagement with the university’s neighboring towns.

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Remembering Kimberly Foster-Clark

BY  |  Tuesday, May 31, 2016 8:00am  |  COMMENTS (2)

Kimberly Foster-ClarkMy most enduring memory of Kimberly Foster-Clark, my daughter’s kindergarten teacher at Nishuane, is of daily pickup. At the end of the school day, as the kindergarteners exited the school building with their teachers to meet their parents, Mrs. Foster-Clark would lead her group of “walkers” down the ramp from the front door and to the grassy area where the parents waited. Like a mama duck, she walked – usually backwards down the ramp – with her trail of ducklings behind her. She usually wore some sort of ankle boot, a frilly blouse, and big loopy earrings. And she always wore a big smile.

It’s a memory that keeps coming back to me in the terrible days since I heard about Mrs. Foster-Clark’s death last Wednesday after a short illness that had kept her out of school since early April. Continue Reading

Anna Quindlen: Her New Novel, Old Jersey Memories and Women in Journalism Today

BY  |  Thursday, Apr 21, 2016 2:30pm  |  COMMENTS (1)

Anna QuindlenIn early 1999, I was 30 years old and new to New York. I knew nothing about the city and the media world within it when I was hired as an assistant to the Editor in Chief of Newsweek magazine. But I knew who Anna Quindlen was, and when months after I was hired it was announced that she was about to start what would be a ten-year gig there as a “Last Word” columnist, I shared in the excitement that filled the executive office.

I met Quindlen briefly at her welcoming bash at the Four Seasons back when newsweeklies could still throw those kind of events. I wanted to tell her that I had always admired her work, that even my mother – a Republican – loved her work, and that I once worked with her sister at a bookstore in San Diego. But, still new to New York and the magazine that would become my home for almost 11 years, I was too shy to do much more than say hello.

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Larycia Hawkins to Give Skype Interview at MSU, 3/23

BY  |  Tuesday, Mar 22, 2016 11:00am

Screen Shot 2016-03-21 at 8.09.12 PMLarycia Hawkins was a relatively unknown political science professor at Wheaton College until last December, when she posted a statement on her Facebook page saying that Muslims and Christians worshipped the same God. In the same post, she said she would wear a hijab, including to her job at Wheaton, a Christian college, to express solidarity with Muslim women.

In January, Wheaton started the formal proceedings for terminating Hawkins, saying her remarks did not reflect the school’s evangelical Statement of Faith. But after pressure from the student body and staff, and a media firestorm, the school backed down. Continue Reading

Award to Recognize MHS Seniors Who Promote Inclusion of Students with Disabilities

BY  |  Friday, Mar 18, 2016 11:00am  |  COMMENTS (1)

Include Montclair AwardAs the parents of an 11-year-old girl with Down syndrome, Wendy and Andrew Lacey have a deep appreciation of how open-minded and inclusive Montclair is.

“Our daughter has benefitted recreationally and academically in Montclair,” Wendy Lacey told Baristanet. “We have seen very positive results for her. Inclusion is totally engrained in our life.”

But the Laceys, who have three other children, would also like to make the inclusion of people with disabilities part of the broader environment. As a result, they are establishing an award for graduating Montclair High School seniors called “Include Montclair.”

The Include Montclair Award aims to highlight the importance of the inclusion of people with disabilities by recognizing Montclair High School students who develop, nurture, promote and live the idea of inclusion through interaction with people with disabilities in our community.

The award will be given to two students in the amount of $1,000 each (total of $2,000), with the goal of spotlighting students who demonstrate leadership abilities, self-advocacy skills and/or extraordinary involvement in supporting inclusion.

“There are so many kids at MHS doing great things,” said Lacey. “Maybe they’re leading a club for students with disabilities. Maybe they’ve advocated for special rights for the disabled. We really want to recognize and encourage that.”

Students with special needs or disabilities are also urged to apply for the award. As Lacey explained, “We encourage students with special needs to apply based on their own community involvement, too. People with disabilities are often looked upon with pity, or as a drain on resources. What we’ve experienced is that many are active and engaged members of the community themselves.”

Some examples of activities that could be a factor in recognizing young adults with disabilities include being a member or manager of a sports team, a participant in performing arts or clubs, self-advocacy, involvement with local volunteer opportunities, or engagement in community-wide technology projects.

Potential award recipients will be asked to complete a brief application, which will include a short essay about why they are qualified to be a recipient of the award. Letters of recommendation are also encouraged.

Alternatively, students may be nominated by an educator, peer or community leader. The nominator will be asked to submit a paragraph of support. If the candidate agrees to accept the nomination, the committee will request that the candidate complete an application.

A committee of 3-5 people in the community will be chosen to approve the application process, review applications and determine the award recipients.  Applications are due April 30, and can be picked up at the MHS guidance department, or by emailing Wendy Lacey at [email protected] Lacey emphasizes that students with special needs may receive an alternative application if desired. Winners will be selected in mid-May.

The Laceys hope to continue to grant the awards each year. “We’ve had very positive experiences with my daughter in Montclair,” Lacey said. “We are trying to build on a spirit that’s already here.”

“Do You Have a Gun in Your Home?”

BY  |  Thursday, Mar 17, 2016 11:30am  |  COMMENTS (1)

gunThis weekend my kids helped me cut down some overgrown vines in our yard. I gave my 5-year old a small pair of pruning shears, and my 9-year-old a larger pair. I watched them carefully, making sure they kept the sharp edges always pointed at the ground and away from each other when using them. Maybe I worry too much, but when I see those sharp, pointed tools the hysterical mom part of my brain starts going into overdrive, and I wonder if I should be letting them hold the shears at all.

It got me thinking of the parents out there who leave loaded guns within close proximity of their children – a far more dangerous tool, as it were – such as the pro-gun activist recently shot by her 4-year-old not long after bragging on Facebook that the boy gets “jacked up” to go target shooting (the shot to his mother was not a lethal one, thank goodness). Continue Reading

Featured Comment

Sad. Let's hope that this is not its "Last Tango." One of the most beautiful and iconic buildings in town. Valentino, Garbo, Keaton must have played there.

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