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Bloomfield adds three to Board of Trustees

By: Andrew Mees, Director of College and Athletics Communications      communications@bloomfield.edu

BLOOMFIELD - One of New Jersey’s oldest Liberal Arts Colleges has added three high-profile citizens to help usher in its new era.

Former New Jersey Department of Banking Commissioner Geoffrey Connor, JD, Verizon Wireless Director of Transport Engineering and Technologies Stephanie Lawson-Muhammad and former Gruntal & Co. General Counsel  Joanne Marren, JD have officially accepted positions as the newest members of the Bloomfield College Board of Trustees, joining a distinguished group at the private, four-year institution.

“The College’s circle of friends continues to grow with the addition of our new board members,” Bloomfield President Richard Levao said of the trio.  “This group brings a wealth of experience in law, public policy and charitable organizations, which all help us move forward as an institution.  We have always been blessed to have high levels of commitment, experience and diversity on our Board of Trustees, and these new members continue to expand on those traditions.”

A retired partner at Reed Smith LLP, Mr. Connor is currently an Adjunct Professor at Bloomfield after enjoying a distinguished career at the top of his field.  A four-time New Jersey “Super Lawyer” in New Jersey Monthly Magazine, he received national recognition for his achievements by earning a national banking “Super Lawyer” honor in a 2009 edition of Super Lawyers Magazine.

Presently a Director of The Provident Bank and its holding company (Provident Financial Services, Inc.), Connor has been published nearly 70 times as a writer, with his work featured in trade publications such as the New Jersey Law Journal, the Hunterdon Review and PA Banker Magazine.

“The most important thing we can do when we reach a certain age is to pass on what we know to the next generation,” he said of his new role at the institution.  “And in doing so, we end up learning more ourselves.”

Ms. Lawson-Muhammad brings 18 years of professional experience in the wireless industry to the Board, with stints in areas ranging from research and product development to service fulfillment for network infrastructure and wireless devices.  In her current role, she has been responsible for the build out, maintenance and monitoring of Verizon’s national fiber network that supports the expansion of the company’s 4G High Speed Network.

“I am honored to be able to play a part in what Bloomfield College offers to its diverse population of students; a transformative learning opportunity that truly prepares them to attain excellence,” she said.  “I look forward to making a positive impact on this mission.”

Ms. Marren has had over 20 years of experience in the financial services industry, serving as a senior legal officer at Gruntal and Co. and The Equitable Companies, Inc. (now AXA Financial), among others.  She has also served as Chair of the Board of Trustees at LeMoyne College (Syracuse, N.Y.) and Nativity Middle School (N.Y.C.), and on the board of Xavier High School (N.Y.C.).  Currently teaching at the college level, Marren is an adjunct professor at Passaic County Community College (N.J.) and Montclair State University.

A diverse institution in Bloomfield, N.J. that features a student body of 2,145 students, Bloomfield College has recently been named among the best National Liberal Arts Colleges in the nation in U.S. News & World Report’s 2014 “Best Colleges” rankings.  Offering over 60 majors and concentrations, the four-year institution will welcome a new state-of-the-art, 84,000-square-foot residence hall in the Summer of 2014, doubling the school’s on-campus resident population to nearly 600 students.