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New Jersey Jaycees. From left, Rev. Emil Rapada, Ria Serrano, Shine Wann, Joyce Andes-David and Arman David.  (Photo courtesy of Arman David)


By RIA SERRANO
President, New Jersey Jaycees


On May 13-15, 2016, the New Jersey Jaycees hosted the 2016 Eastern Institute at the Holiday Inn in Clark, N.J.

The Eastern Institute (EI) is one of the five institutes in the U.S. Junior Chamber.

This particular institute is a group of affiliated Jaycee state organizations formed to advance the Junior Chamber movement.

The Institute is comprised of states with the leadership of JCI USA State Presidents Dominic Hanna (DE), Travis Fisher (MD), Erika Echavarria (NY), this writer (NJ), Peter Urscheler (PA) and Craig Joseph Erbacher (WV).

Over the past weekend, the member states were trained to strengthen their member advocacy strategies, maximize their skills as officers and members, and develop their understanding on social dynamics to help resolve conflicts.

The training was provided by the organization’s expert on the subjects, incumbent national membership director and presidential candidate for 2017 Heather Vardell, JCI USA 95th President Sen Jennifer, Judith Hodorovich Ray, JCI USA 90th President Jeff Lank, and JCI Senator Scott Kingsley.

Additionally, the event provided a venue for the Jaycees to socialize and meet others within the organization.


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Ria Serrano, New Jersey Jaycees President, welcomes the Convention delegates.  (Filipino Reporter photo by Manny Caballero)


Sumptuous lunch were provided in partnership with La Parilla de Manila (Colonia, N.J.) and a casual but elegant dinner at Patria (Rahway, N.J.).

This event also elected the new EI officers Jeff Lank, Paul Smith, Cia Marshall, Amy L. Newton who will be taking office in July 2016.

This year’s event was chaired by JCI North Jersey Chapter President Joyce Andes-David with committee members comprising of Emil Rapada, Dana Palma, Danielle DeSandis, Jen Radz, Shine Wann, Audrey Lyn Atienza Santos, Jazmine Andes, Arman David, Moppet Villasin Nucum, Maricar Taino, Domingo Ampil, John Sohn, the young ones from JCI New Jersey Youth, EI Vice Chair Paul Smith and this writer, incumbent NJ Jaycees State President.

The two-day Convention was hosted jointly by EI Chair Robin Bunch Bailey and this writer (State President), and emceed by JCI North Jersey’s Joyce Andes-David.

Special mention to Philippine-New York Chapter President Stevenson Van Derodar, who took along with him the most number of guests from his home chapter.


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Convention delegates from Northeastern States.  (Photo courtesy of Arman David)