Nicole was born in December of 1985 to parents Mark and Debbie in Morristown, NJ. She was raised in Byram Township with her younger brother, Christopher and graduated as salutatorian from Lenape Valley Regional High School in 2004. Throughout Nicole’s childhood and young adult life, there was one constant: service and community engagement. Nicole has been a Girl Scout since she was 5 years old and is now a lifetime member. As an adolescent she assisted as a troop leader in training for a group of younger scouts, many of whom are still in touch with her today. Serving as a role model, she earned both her Silver and Gold Awards. The Gold Award is the highest honor in Girl Scouting, requiring 30 hours of leadership work, three Interest Projects and one Focus Book relevant to their project; Nicole also earned the Girl Scout Gold Career Award, which requires girls to complete 40 hours of career exploration, assess their community and its needs, and develop a vision for change. All of this work culminates with a community service project of at least 65 hours. For Nicole’s Gold Award project she raised over $1800 from donors and organized a bone marrow and blood drive at her local church which added over 60 bone marrow donors to the national registry.
As part of the National Honor Society and Peer 2 Peer organizations at Lenape, Nicole also organized a walk-a-thon to raise funds for St. Jude’s Children Hospital. After graduation, the groundwork she set continued to support the walk-a-thon for many years to come. Nicole worked after school at a local physical therapy clinic as an aide and was inspired to find out more about the profession. After her junior year she volunteered at the Juliette Low Camp for girls in Kansas City, MO., where she was responsible for helping girls with various disabilities participate in a very typical camping experience. When she came home she told her mom she wanted to be a camp counselor the rest of her life!
This eventually led to discovering The University of Scranton program in Occupational Therapy which she attended following graduation. Nicole spent five years in Scranton, PA, earning her Masters of Science in occupational therapy and graduating summa cum laude in August of 2009. While there, she served as the president of the Student Occupational Therapy Association. During her year as president she organized and carried out a monthly exercise program on campus for the local Arc residents. The residents of the Lackawanna Arc came to the University of Scranton each month and students would facilitate a themed exercise based evening, fostering health. The events provided both community integration and general well being for the residents and outreach opportunities for the students of the Panuska College of Professional Studies. In 2006, Nicole was awarded the Rose I. Kelly award for academic achievement and in 2008 she was awarded the Lawrence A. Mann award for service to the university community. Nicole was inducted into Alpha Sigma Nu, the Jesuit Honor Society during her senior year.
Nicole also had the opportunity to experience the global community while at Scranton. One of her clinical rotations was completed in Guadalajara, Mexico where she lived with a host family. Following her Junior year, she was chosen to participate in the international service program and live in Mexico City in an orphanage for girls for three weeks while helping them to complete projects at their day center and experience their daily lives. This is where Nicole developed an interest and passion for social justice. For two years on the anniversary of the slaughter of Bishop Romero and the Jesuits in El Salvador, Nicole traveled with her peers to Georgia to protest the School of the Americas and the unjust way in which the American government intervenes in central and southern american warfare.
Following graduation, Nicole moved back home and began her professional career at Kessler Institute for Rehabilitation as a therapist for persons who had experienced a brain injury. Since then she has worked in a variety of settings including homecare, assisted living facilities, early intervention, private and public school systems and sensory clinics. She has received recognition as a certified brain injury therapist and taken the courses and exams to qualify as a certified aging in place specialist and certified dementia care specialist.
Nicole and her husband Ryan moved to the Cloverhill section of Mount Olive in 2012. Their favorite thing about the development was being able to walk to the elementary school. They have two children, a daughter who is in the first grade at Mountain VIew and an infant son who was born last August. They love the Cloverhill community and all of the resources provided by the town, especially the parks and outdoor spaces to explore. Their favorite family pastime is walking! As a member of the Mount Olive community, Nicole has worked with her neighbors to ensure the management of air pollutants from a local business and has recently started a local chapter of the Buy Nothing Project to encourage reduction of waste and the sharing of resources amongst neighbors. Nicole is a Girl Scout Daisy leader for her daughter’s troop and loves teaching them all of the important skills she learned as a scout herself.
Nicole is dedicated to the community, the environment and facilitating equitable access and community wellness for all residents regardless of age, ability or gender.
“Our community is growing more and more diverse; and I believe that town council has a moral responsibility to serve ALL of our residents. Whether you have lived in Mt. Olive for generations or you just moved in; every person, young or old, deserves a town council that works for everybody, not just for those at the top. I am passionate about protecting our environment for all to enjoy and ensuring the safety, health and well-being of all of our residents. I am excited to be a part of this candidate team and would be honored to represent you as a member of the Town Council.”