Barbara Ann Fuller Volunteer of the Year 2016:
Suzanne has been a committed volunteer with PMINJ more than 10 years.
While juggling serious family obligations over the years, with her leadership,
the registration team has organized its processes and prodedures so well
that the team work looks effortless. Though the responsibility is a
large one, Suzannes team does not fail. Regisration runs smoothly.
Any issues that arise are handled seamlessly within the registration team,
so that you would never know there was ever an issue. Suzanne and her team
routinely takes ownership and handls issues that arise on site during events.
Suzanne is always ready to give input and is available regularly to the Symposium
Team. When it comes to reviewing materials and giving solid / sage / knowledgable
feedback on Symposium issues, Suzanne can be depended on. Suzanne’s
demeanor also makes her very easy to work with.
Volunteer of the Quarter 4Q16:
Claudia has forged new relationships between PMINJ and both the BioPharma
Research Council (BRC) and BioNJ. The BRC held an event in November
that was attended by several chapter members. Our Outreach Speaker
– Michael Sarachman was provided a platform to evangelize for the Chapter
in both a Training Session and as part of a Panel discussion that Claudia
moderated. The Chapter was also provided free table space at the exhibitors
area where we were positioned right next to Mercer County Community College
which has indicated interest in an alliance with PMINJ. Claudia spoke
before employees of Musculoskeletal Transplant Foundation in Edison on Dec
14th. She is a volunteer who’s active in the monthly calls and can
be relied upon to get things done for the Outreach team.
Volunteer of the Quarter 3Q16:
Max has provided a pivotal role as Speaker Angel and now has moved
up to Speaker Team Lead. He has gone above and beyond in all phases of soliticing,
researching, negotiating and working closely with the speakers for the symposium
as needed. He has volunteered to substitute for other angels on last minute
cancelation and ensure the success of the symposium. He works well with
the speakers and symposium team to ensure strong communications which has
led to our successful planning and execution of our biannual symposium events.
His leadership and commitment have had a strong impact on the success of
our speaker and symposium team.
Volunteer of the Quarter 2Q16:
Kristin Hopp took over scholarship renewals two years ago and she
has kept participation up through her diligent follow-up and answering the
students and parents questions. Recognizing right away that students have
a lot on their plates, she implemented a process that gently reminds students
before applications are due in February / March by sending a link to the
new application and including deadlines. When it is time to send grades,
she sends a reminder and copies the parents. This has increased renewal
participation significantly. Kristin has stepped up to a difficult challenge
of declining renewal numbers. Please congratulate her for a job well
Volunteer of the Quarter 1Q16:
Laura has been an active volunteer of the Symposium Registration
Team for more than 10 years. Laura can be counted on not only to
do a great job with her specific area of responsibility (preparing the
certificates for the attendees, vendors, & speakers) but she regularly
offers her time to help make the overall event registration process more
With a smile on her face, Laura works at the registration table
for the symposium and makes registration experience pleasant for the attendees.
Laura is always willing to pitch in and help to coordinate the registration
activities when needed. On multiple occasions, she came to the rescue
for the registration team, when a team member could not attend the event
due to a personal emergency. Laura regularly provides suggestions for improvements
for the registration process and shares her ideas during the Symposium
Lessons Learned session. Laura always goes the extra mile to help
our chapter members and other volunteers. The success of PMINJ's symposium
and other chapter events is attributed to the volunteers like Laura.
Barbara Ann Fuller Volunteer of the Year 2015:
For over 12 years, Harry has been the A/V professional for PMINJ,
working tirelessly to ensure high quality technical support for every presentation
at each event. He has managed the Chapter’s capability to present
at each monthly meeting, Seminar, Symposium, and IPM day. Initially
the responsibilities ‘only’ included working with the vendors at each of
the venues for our events. He has been responsible for the quality of
the speaker audio and the presentation of the speaker materials. Harry
will test all of the speaker presentations prior to each event to assure that
there are no technical issues that might occur during the presentation.
Just think, for the Symposium alone, that is at least 13 presentations.
Then in 2007, the Chapter broadened the scope of our events. We
introduced satellite meeting locations and increased the A/V requirements
exponentially. Now Harry was extending the A/V capabilities of the
events to locatiions via phone and internet so that members could participate
remotely in real time. A secondary benefit for this arrangement was
the capability to create Webinars that could be viewed after the event.
Over the years, the A/V technology has changed, and Harry has
been the guiding force to ensure PMINJ has been able to maintain our capabiilities
to provide members the ability to participate in our events. He has
identified new equipment to increase quality and has investigated and implemented
new processes to improve efficiency. Harry has assisted with vendor
changes in webinar technology, and is constantly investigating new technology
that would make the events better for the participants and the future viewers
of the webinars. He has mentored new A/V team volunteers and has even
collaborated with other Chapters to help them setup similar satellite webcasts
for their meetings.
In all of this, Harry has been the perfect example of a PMINJ Volunteer.
He is always available and willing to help. A dedicated professional,
Harry always demonstrates the highest standards of quality and leadership!
PMINJ deeply appreciates Harry’s commitment, and is pleased to present him
the 2015 Barbara Ann Fuller Volunteer of the Year award,
Volunteer of the Quarter 4Q15:
When you attend PMINJ’s monthly programs or symposium, you will
almost always find Dennis Ryan at the audio/visual (A/V) table, testing A/V
equipment before the event, monitoring activities, or going around the audience
with a microphone so everybody can hear questions attendees are asking the
speaker. PMINJ would like to recognize Dennis as Volunteer of the Quarter
for his years of dedicated service, strong leadership, teamwork, and attention
to details to ensure that chapter events are successful.
Dennis joined the Chapter A/V team as a volunteer in 2009. He has
now successfully supported more than 10 major symposiums and more than
50 monthly meetings. Every facility has different challenges in terms of
ensuring that the speaker can be seen and heard by everyone in the audience.
As part of the A/V team, Dennis is responsible for soliciting, selecting,
managing, and working with the A/V subcontractors for the monthly meetings,
annual symposium and IPM day events. Dennis helps set up A/V equipment on
the day of the monthly meetings or a day before the big symposiums. He works
with speakers to make sure they are comfortable with the microphone, video
screen, moving presentation on the chapter laptop and music for the event.
Dennis can always be relied on to keep his cool during emergencies like
equipment malfunctions or unforeseen speaker requests. Over the years, Dennis
has shown leadership, patience, perseverance, adherence to the highest standards
of quality, and, yes Dennis brings good music and cheer for the event!
Dennis began his project management career while working for a contract
manufacturing firm in the mid-1980's. He was responsible for a number
of projects relating to new product launches and seasonal promotions for
the personal care industry. He was eventually hired by one of his
customers to become the internal manager for similar activities.
In 1998 he jumped to the pharmaceutical industry and has been with Bristol-Myers
Squibb for the last 10 years. He works in R&D on different medicines
going through the development and clinical trial processes. If a medicine
doesn't get eliminated along the way (and most do), it takes upwards of
10 years to bring a new product to market and that is a long, complex and
Dennis earned his PMP in 2006 and joined PMINJ immediately to enhance
his expertise, get the most out his certification and begin networking with
other project management professionals.
Dennis' AV experience goes back many decades to when he was the student
AV leader for his high school and continues today through his volunteer
work for several organizations. His interest has been encouraged over
the years by having the opportunity to volunteer to work side-by-side with
one of the most successful rock bands in history (and a member of the R&R
Hall of Fame Class of 2016).
After admiring Harry Chiovarou's sole handling of the chapter's AV
services from a distance for a few months, Dennis offered his assistance
- which was warmly and gratefully received. Dennis is very pleased
to work with Harry and serve PMINJ at the monthly meetings, Seminar / Symposiums
and IPM Days for many years now and looks forward to doing what he can
to support and help the organization grow. PMINJ's success is attributed
to volunteers like Dennis, who work tirelessly to provide quality programs
for the chapter members and we thank him for that. Please stop-by at A/V
table at monthly meetings or at symposium and thank Dennis for his years
of contribution to successfully managing A/V for the chapter events!
Volunteer of the Quarter 3Q15:
Alvin joined the Marketing team in March 2015 focusing on improving
our social media presence. Over the last few months, Alvin has made
significant contributions to our social media sites including postings
on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter. These postings have helped increase
attendance at various chapter meetings and workshops. Over the summer,
he led an initiative with students at Montclair State University to create
a social media strategy and calendar of postings for our new chapter year.
With very limited supervision, he managed three student teams to create
a social media strategy and identify content for these sites in six weeks.
He is now managing two volunteers to coordinate regular content updates.
Alvin was also instrumental in updating our chapter brochure.
He took the lead in facilitiating the necessary meetings to collect content
from our board members and redesigned the brochure with a new format and
graphics. Alvin is a Project Manager / Office Manager for NBP Holdings
Group and an academic tutor at DeVry University Paramus Campus.
He is completing his MBA with concentration in Project Management
at DeVry’s Keller Graduate School of Management.
Volunteer of the Quarter 2Q15:
Jerry Meier has been volunteering as a member of PMINJ Programs
On-Site Registration activities since November, 2011, when he joined the
team led by Dennis Komsa. As a dedicated team member with detailed
knowledge of the On-Site Registration process, Jerry agreed to take the Team
Leader role when Dennis stepped down in June, 2013. Since then, Jerry
has worked tirelessly to recruit, train, organize and manage a team of
volunteers who welcome members and guests at PMINJ Programs’ Monthly Chapter
Each month, Jerry coordinates with his team members to develop a
schedule to ensure full coverage of the registration table; obtains and
copies meeting handouts; manages attendance tracking and reporting at
the Main Meeting location; and verifies accurate headcount numbers for
the dinner meeting bill. He also helps facilitate sponsor and outreach
activity logistics. Always ready and willing to tackle new challenges
to improve the registration process, Jerry worked with John Bufe to pilot
and deploy automated walk-in registrations via smartphone and has helped
streamline attendance tracking using Google docs.
An efficient, organized Team Leader, Jerry can be relied on to ensure
On-Site Registration runs smoothly, and should be recognized for his
longstanding support of PMINJ as a volunteer and Programs On-Site Registration
Volunteer of the Quarter 1Q15:
Tod has been the “bedrock” volunteer for the Corporate Outreach
Team. He has been PMINJ's ambassador and a project management evangelist
at many of our Outreach events- handing out brochures, giving advice and
(when available) candy to the people who stop by our PMINJ information tables.
Tod’s smiling face and easy manner of speaking with people have
been key elements in spreading the word about the importance of project
management as a profession and about the benefits and opportunities that
PMINJ provides to members. As we have continued to reach out to project
manager communities in corporations, universities, state and local
governments, and other professional organizations, we’ve always been able
to count on Tod to volunteer and be present to represent PMINJ.
When Tod is not volunteering for PMINJ events, he is a Business
Development Manager for Analysts International Corporation (AIC) in Edison,
Barbara Ann Fuller Volunteer of the Year 2014:
Diane Dugan PMP, LEED AP, was awarded the most prestigious award
of the PMINJ chapter, the Barbara Ann Fuller Volunteer of the Year award,
at the Volunteer Recognition Dinner on 06 February, 2015 .
Diane is the consummate professional, photographer and volunteer.
Diane was even working her own celebratory event as PMINJ’s photographer!
Diane attends most if not all PMINJ events; from monthly Program meetings,
mid-size workshops to the large Symposium events. Diane uses her
talent to memorialize these chapter events.
Diane leads the Photography Team for the events, organizing photography
activities, assuring coverage of speakers and vendors, and the post event
gathering and finalizing of all photos for media and website release,
with finesse. The Symposium events are especially demanding with multiple
breakout rooms, 100’s of photos captured and subsequently sorted and edited.
In this way Diane shares her talents and further reveals her commitment
and her art to the PMINJ chapter.
Diane is a joy to work with and the PMINJ chapter is grateful for
her continued commitment to our chapter; thank you Diane!
Volunteer of the Quarter 4Q14:
Adrienne Walcott joined the Volunteer Recognition team in March 31,
2014. In this very short time of volunteering, Adrienne has gone above
and beyond the expectation for her role as Volunteer Coordinator. After
training, Adrienne learned the VRMS system and efficiently manages it as
coordinator for the PMINJ chapter. In this role she manages volunteer
engagements, tracks volunteer opportunities and application, updates
VRMS database and Master Volunteer list, sends communication to new members
of Volunteer teams, trains applicants in VRMS database and responds to
any email questions received to volunteers(:@:)pminj.org.
She thoroughly enjoys her role as Volunteer Coordinator.
When she made a list of reasons to stay in New Jersey or move to Arizona,
this was one of the top reason why she chose to stay in New Jersey.
When she is not volunteering, she takes violin lessons and plays in
Her dedication is unmatched and she is very pleasant to work with.
Volunteer of the Quarter 3Q14:
Anand is one of the founding members of the newly formed Member
Service Center. He joined in April to help develop the initial
launch of the Member Services Team. He was a strong contributor
in the development and organization of our Member Service page on the chapter
website. He assumed responsibility for Member Services
during our peak period of new program year colliding with website challenges.
He escalated issues quickly and stayed on the task through to resolution.
He demonstrated and continues to demonstrate a commitment to our members
to provide exceptional customer service.
Volunteer of the Quarter 2Q14:
Pamela Kunz assumed the position of project manager for the 2014
Chapter Excellence Awards initiative with a minimal knowledge about
the program, but she hit the ground running. Pam quickly reviewed all
the available documentation, reached out to the Board members and was
able to fully grasp the project requirements.
When global PMI published the Chapter Excellence application, Pam
conducted a gap analysis, collaborated with many people, and was able
to quickly gather information supporting PMINJ’s 2013 accomplishments.
This was a big challenge since the categories being measured and the requirements
for submitting documentation had changed dramatically from the prior
Pam went above and beyond to ensure requirements were understood
and adhered to by the PMINJ Board members and she provided the insight
and detailed work involved in demonstrating the quantifiable and measurable
results. Under strict time constraints, Pam spent countless hours completing
the new requirements. “Her dedication is inspirational,” one board
member noted. “She even fills in at the registration desk at monthly
meetings … she takes her work at PMINJ very seriously.”
We look forward to keeping Pam on in a new role—PM-Chapter Excellence,
which she initiated by carefully identifying lessons learned and ways
we can act upon them to continue to provide excellent service to our
Volunteer of the Quarter 1Q14:
Mike Vitale volunteered in February 2013.
Mike immediately adopted the vision of bringing PM knowledge into
schools [k-12]. He started researching PMIEF [PMI Education Foundation]
to see what other chapters were doing and what materials were available.
He developed a small team and begin putting together a PMINJ custom presentation.
They adopted the concept of working with students that were tasked to
lead a project. This led to the connection with the Scouts in particular;
the Gold and Eagle scout program and to schools involved in FIRST Robotics
competition. They presented to a Boy Scout troop in November 2013, shortly
followed up with a presentation in December 2013 to the Piscataway High
School Robotics Team. To assist after the PM presentation Mike’s team
designated a mentor to work with the team. The team is also working with
the Hillsborough High School Robotics team.
Volunteer of the Quarter 4Q13:
Steve is one of two people on the Marketing team
that distributes all email blast communications to the chapter. All
email blasts are required to go out in a timely fashion. One added duty
that the two volunteers have is to respond to all email inquiries about
the email blasts. The questions they receive are quite varied.
Before taking this role, any questions from our membership
regarding the email blasts went unanswered which lead to member dissatisfaction.
Steve has answered questions from our membership on a variety of subjects.
To answer the questions, many times he would have to find the correct
person in the chapter to provide insight or figure out on his own
how a process worked and give the member an answer. He responds to
questions in a timely manner because many are time-sensitive when they
relate to registration. His role has provided a great insight into the
obstacles our members encounter. Another important part of this role
is to transmit the feedback to specific VP areas so that they can respond
to the issue. Steve’s role has provided an effective feedback loop
from our members into the chapter.
Steve completed the Penn State Certification Program in
March 2009. He joined PMINJ on 10/10/2007and became a volunteer for
the Marketing team on 2/29/2012.
Volunteer of the Quarter 3Q13:
Gary is one of two people that distribute all
email blast communications to the chapter. The email blasts are required
to go out in a timely fashion. One added duty that the two volunteers
have is to respond to all emails from anyone that receives these email
blasts. The questions they receive are quite varied.
Gary earned his PMP in November 2006. He joined PMINJ
in May of 2011 and became a volunteer for the Marketing team in February
of 2012. Before taking this role any questions from our members responding
to the email blasts were not answered which would lead to member dissatisfaction.
Gary has answered questions from our membership on a variety of
subjects. To answer the questions many times he would have to find
the correct person within the chapter to answer the question or figure
out on his own how a process worked and give the member an answer.
He responds to questions in a timely manner because many are time sensitive
when they relate to registration. His role has provided a great insight
into the obstacles our members encounter. Another important part of this
role is to get the feedback to specific VP areas so that they can respond
to the issue at hand. Basically this role has provided an effective feedback
loop from our members to the chapter.
Volunteer of the Quarter 2Q13:
Marc Matrulli is one of our most dedicated volunteers
on the PMINJ Programs Team, and is the Team Co-Leader for the Programs
Venue Management Team. Marc, along with his Co-Leader Dan
Ackerman, is responsible for identifying venues for our monthly
chapter meetings, negotiating contracts, and managing the relationships
with each facility to ensure they deliver the best service to PMINJ
A project manager for over 15 years, Marc joined
PMINJ in 2006 when his role at Johnson & Johnson included training
on PM practices. Marc earned his PMP in 2007, knowing the credential
would help give him the credibility his role required. The strategy
worked, and Marc is currently responsible for IT Portfolio Strategy
and Process at Johnson & Johnson.
Marc has been a volunteer on the Programs Venue Management
team since 2010. He is a gracious host and the Programs Team relies on
Marc to work with the meeting facilities staff. A recent example of Marc’s
dedication and initiative was his work with the staff at the Pines
Manor after Hurricane Sandy to make sure all systems were “Go”
for the November Chapter meeting. Like many other businesses, the
Pines had lost power and suffered some damage due to the storm, and
Marc stayed in close contact with the facility to ensure they’d be
back in service in time for the meeting.
Marc plays a vital role as a volunteer and Team Co-Leader for
PMINJ’s Programs Monthly Chapter meetings. When asked why he volunteers
and what he enjoys about his role, Marc said, “It allows me to
leverage my Project Management skills and to interact with all the
other Program Team volunteers that work so hard to make each Chapter
meeting such a success.”
relies on the help of dedicated, talented volunteers like Marc to
deliver successful Program Chapter meetings and provide valuable
professional development opportunities to the members. We appreciate
Marc’s commitment, energy, and professionalism and thank him sincerely
for his valued contribution to the PMINJ community.
Volunteer of the Quarter 1Q13:
Dan is one of the exceptional PMINJ volunteers on the Programs
Team, and currently the Team Co-Leader for Venue Management.
Dan, along with his Co-Leader Marc Matrulli, is responsible for the
great facilities and excellent meals PMINJ members enjoy at the Monthly
Meetings. Dan started volunteering for Programs with the On-Site
Registration team in 2009, and is still one of the many faces you may
see behind the registration desk at the Main Location.
As Venue Management Co-Lead, even before the Program year begins,
Dan is hard at work evaluating facilities and negotiating the contracts
with venues to host the Main Location monthly chapter meetings.
Venues must be able to meet not only PMINJ’s requirements
for space and technical specifications (presentation delivery and broadcast
to satellite locations); they must also provide excellent dinners
at competitive rates.
In the weeks before each Monthly Meeting, Dan starts coordinating
with the other Programs Teams and with the Venue to make sure the
facilities and accommodations are in order. He makes sure the
Audio team has the connectivity in place and all is functioning or
are getting the necessary support. He also makes sure that the PMO
and Networking LCI teams have what they need to run their respective
On the day of the meeting, Dan works with the venue's event manager
to make sure tables are set as expected, food is correct and plentiful,
and everything operates according to plan. He is the gracious
host throughout the evening, making sure that last-minute logistics
are addressed, and all the guests are enjoying themselves. At
the end of the meeting, he obtains the final count from the On-Site Registration
team and works with the venue contact to review the invoice, making
sure the Chapter is billed correctly and sometimes negotiating further
discounts before providing approval for the Chapter to make payment.
The smooth execution each month is just another example of Dan’s
skill as a PM. When not playing the role of Programs Meeting Venue-Meister,
he works at Morgan Stanley supporting Morgan Stanley Wealth Management,
where he recently completed work on a three year effort to integrate
Smith Barney's suite of Corporate Equity business applications into
the Morgan Stanley environment. As Program Manager, Dan managed
the Program Office and his team's linkage with the rest of the firm's
A PMI, PMINJ member and PMP since 2005, Dan plays a critical role
as a volunteer and Co-Team Leader for PMINJ’s Monthly Chapter Meetings.
When asked what he liked about volunteering for PMINJ, Dan said,
“I like all of it. It is great to be able to interact with so
many people across PMINJ and be part of the success of our monthly
To run successfully and give the best service to its members,
PMINJ relies on the help of dedicated, hard-working volunteers like Dan.
We appreciate Dan’s commitment and energy, and extend sincere thanks
to him for his valued contribution to the PM community.
Volunteer of the Quarter 4Q12:
Beth is a veteran volunteer for the Symposium Registration
Team. The PMINJ Community relies on the Registration team
to handle on-line registration; send confirmation emails; distribute
all the communications related to the event; and provide registration
coverage on the day of the event. The symposium team registers
more than 1100 attendees for the two major events each year. They
resolve technical issues related to the on-line system, questions and
quarries from the members and any cancellation / refund issues. Beth joined
the PMINJ Registration team as a volunteer soon after earning her PMP in
2007. She chose to volunteer for the Symposium Registration team
because of her prior experience and interest in event registration processes
and being a team player.
Many PMINJ members are familiar with Beth’s symposium
notices or perhaps she has helped you address a registration issue.
Beth is very prompt responding to any inquiry related to registration
and if she cannot answer, she will get the request to the appropriate
team lead and assure a response. Beth enjoys working with the
other Registration team members and cites its leaders, as essential
to keeping the Registration system humming! These team leaders
cite Beth’s commitment to the team and how she always goes the extra
mile. Beth sends ‘Thank You’s to attendees and more recently
stepped up to email the survey for IPM day event. All these
activities take up Beth’s time including weekends.
When she’s not volunteering with the PMINJ Symposium
Registration Team, Beth is an IT Project Manager at Mars Information
Services where she partners with Business PM’s to advance global
multi-segment projects and she is responsible for their PMO.
Beth loves project management! She especially enjoys working
with engaged volunteers and coworkers, learning and addressing
project challenges to deliver successful results.
The PMINJ chapter cannot run successfully without the
help of dedicated volunteers like Beth. We appreciate Beth’s hard
work and dedication for the chapter and desire to give back to the PM
Volunteer of the Quarter 1Q12:
Morris’s focus on IT Project Management came as a
natural evolution during his 20+ years in data center, computer,
and Help Desk support. His skill in leading teams and working
with technology are key ingredients to his success leading the PMINJ
Programs’ rapidly growing Satellite Team. His team is comprised
of a network of over 25 members statewide, and they coordinate
with the Programs’ A/V Team to broadcast the monthly programs to fifteen
remote meeting locations around the state, from Mahwah to Atlantic
Always positive and decisive, with a project manager’s attention
to detail, Morris works with his Satellite Logistics Coordinator
to make sure each Satellite Coordinator gets the list of individuals
who will be attending the meeting at that remote site each month, so
members can be signed in and be confirmed eligible to claim PDU’s.
His prompt answers to logistics questions and regular communications
with the Satellite Team throughout the month ensure each location is prepared
to host as many as 25 guests for the meeting.
After the event, Morris contacts each Satellite Coordinator
to collect registration forms; discuss communications or logistics
issues; and ensure continued improvements to this new process.
With his guidance and leadership, the Satellites have grown
from a few small locations with a handful of participants to a
thriving program whose attendance now exceeds registration at the
Main Meeting location.
A PMP and PMINJ member since October, 2010, Morris first
started volunteering as a way to earn extra PDU’s. Originally
he was a Marketing Team volunteer, when he was asked to assist
the Programs Team in a Satellite Coordinator role, Morris immediately
accepted. With his help as a Coordinator, the team has
developed a standard process for qualifying, setting up, and running
satellite locations. Now the Satellite Team Leader, he reports,
“I enjoy providing an opportunity for PMINJ members to participate
in the monthly Programs and enjoy local ‘networking’ when the Main
meeting is not close to where they live or work. It’s a way to
‘give back’ to PMINJ, and a great way to ensure that as many members as
possible have access to the monthly Programs.”
PMINJ is a volunteer organization and the chapter’s success
is attributed to volunteers like Morris who work tirelessly
to provide quality service for chapter membership and we thank
him for that.
Volunteer of the Quarter 3Q11:
Suzanne brings more than 20 years of experience in Healthcare
Information Technology to her PMINJ chapter volunteering. She
also brings a detailed oriented and pleasant personality that is
needed for the Symposium Registration Team. Suzanne has been the Team
Co-Lead for symposium Registration Team for the past 5 years and has
worked tirelessly during the year to organize and stream line the annual
event registration process. Suzanne and her team are instrumental for
the on-line registration, confirmations, badges and gifts for attendees
for the May Symposiums as well Nov IPM Day events. Before becoming registration
team lead, Suzanne served as a volunteer on the Registration Team.
The first step for a successful Symposium is to have smooth
registration process. Every year over 600 members register for
the May Symposium and over 500 members register for IPM Day Seminar,
both online. There are significant efforts involved for planning,
setting up team and assign responsibilities, setting up dates, setting
up online registration with web master, continually monitor registration,
answering phone calls related to registration and resolve any issues
members might have registering for the events. On the day of
the event, Suzanne and her team arrives at the facility very early
in the morning to set up registration tables with gifts and name tags.
Due to hard work and dedication of volunteers like Suzanne, the chapter
is able to provide quality events like symposiums to the members.
Suzanne’s thoughts on her PMINJ volunteering experience:
“Initially when I joined PMINJ I thought that I
would be able to attend some interesting seminars on Project Management
and keep my PMP certification current. After attending a few
Chapter Events and seeing the quality of the programs as well
as the knowledgeable membership, I knew I had to be part of the organization
and help make things happen. I am proud and excited to be an active
member of the PMINJ Chapter and encourage everyone to Volunteer as
you not only help the organization, you help yourself and make many
new friends and acquaintances”.
PMINJ is a volunteer organization and chapter’s success is
attributed to volunteers like Suzanne who works tirelessly to provide
quality service for chapter membership and we thank her for that.
Volunteer of the Quarter 2Q11:
Lisa brings more than 25 years of experience in telecommunication
and information systems to her PMINJ chapter volunteering. She
also brings a detail-oriented and pleasant personality that is
needed for the Symposium Speaker Team. Lisa has been the Team
Lead for symposium speaker team for the past 3 years and has worked
tirelessly, around the year for speaker solicitation, review and selection.
Lisa and her team are instrumental for creating the final agenda
for the May Symposia and the November IPM Day events. Before
becoming speaker team lead, Lisa served as a speaker angel and was
a proactive member of the team for over a year.
The Symposium Speaker team is the heart of the symposium.
The quality of speakers is the most important factor for the success of the
symposium. There are significant efforts involved with planning,
reviewing, and interacting with speakers to manage their needs.
Lisa and her co-lead are responsible for soliciting speakers, collating
and reviewing documents from all the speaker proposals. They check
references and lead a team of volunteer angels through the rigorous speaker
selection process. On the day of the event, Lisa makes sure each
speaker arrives on time, has an assigned angel and satisfies all their
Lisa’s thoughts on her PMINJ volunteering experience:
“PMINJ offers a variety of great professional
development opportunities, and volunteering on the Speaker Team
for the Symposium and IPM Day and working to provide the best experience
possible for our Chapter members is my way of saying "Thank you!"
to PMINJ. It's also a fun and rewarding way to meet and
network with other PMs”.
PMINJ's success is attributed to volunteers like Lisa who
work tirelessly to provide quality programs for the chapter members
and we thank her for that.
Volunteer of the Quarter 1Q11:
When you attend PMINJ’s monthly programs, you will almost always
find Dennis Komsa at the sign-in table ready to help you register
for the meeting. In return for his dedication, strong leadership
skills and proactive efforts as team lead of the On-Site Registration
team, Dennis is being recognized as PMINJ’s Volunteer of the Quarter.
Dennis became a member of the NJ chapter in 2008 and, in the
following year, volunteered to take lead role for the On-Site
Registration team. His strong leadership skills are evident
as he deals with scheduling his team, now reaching 15 members in
size, to ensure that there is ample registration support for each meeting.
As part of this responsibility, he deals with resolving any registration
issues that are uncovered.
For each of the eight months that PMINJ holds a dinner meeting,
Dennis will insure that there are sufficient volunteers to work at the meeting’s
on-site registration table. He has demonstrated flexibility
in handling last minute changes in scheduling. With a recent
increase in volunteers, Dennis has improved the scheduling of team
efforts so that each volunteer has some time off for dinner and networking.
Also, Dennis takes responsibility for bringing the registration
supplies and name tags early to each meeting.
In addition to handling the walk-in registrations on the evening
of the meeting, Dennis assists in compiling the payment analysis
that is done after registration is completed. He also follows
up on post-meeting issue resolution.
Dennis’ volunteer efforts do not stop with the PMINJ organization.
In addition, Dennis is an active volunteer with the Somerset County
United Way; as a member of the Resource Development and Marketing
Committee, he heads their Social Media efforts to expand the organization’s
outreach program. He has helped them establish a presence on
Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter, established a blog on MyCentralJersey.com
and is currently in the process of implementing a high school intern
program to lend staffing assistance.
Volunteer of the Quarter 2Q10:
Michael Lange has been a member of the Program Evaluation
team for 3 years. He has been consistent with his support.
As a team member, Michael is required to summarize anywhere from
30 to 50 evaluation forms every month using the team’s MS Excel
spreadsheet. What has set Michael apart is his initiative. Over
the years he has recommended various reporting improvements and
modifications to the spreadsheet calculations which have resulted
in more meaningful data mining.
In addition to his regular monthly activities of
collecting data, Michael recently volunteered to help the chapter
test the use of Survey Monkey to provide an electronic program evaluation
survey for the satellite locations. Michael created the program
evaluation survey based on the paper version while at the same time
enhancing the electronic version for ease of use and data entry.
The electronic survey has demonstrated it is possible
for the chapter to go ‘green’ and improve the satellite location
program evaluation reporting. The electronic evaluation form has
reduced handwriting interpretation issues and reduced the time it
takes to summarize and collate the various question’s answers into
a single master MS Excel spreadsheet report.
Michael continues to provide improvements to the
electronic evaluation form. Two great examples are the addition
of a ‘pointer’ to the PMI.org site upon completion of the evaluation
which serves as a reminder for program attendees to submit their
PDU's and the addition of check box's for the various volunteer
activities available, making it easier to complete and faster for
chapter leadership to complete data searches.
Michael has helped the program evaluation
team make a difference and provides value added support to the
chapter every day.
Volunteer of the Quarter 1Q10:
Dave has been a member of the New Jersey Chapter since 1999
and received his PMP certification in 2002. From 2000 through
2006, Dave was the chapter’s newsletter editor. He continued to
generate the newsletter even while he was working at the Kennedy
Space Center in Florida. Once he returned to NJ to work at Telcordia
Technologies as a Senior Project Manager, he became the chapter’s lead
For the past three years, all the pictures taken at the monthly
meetings and at the May/November Symposia have been the responsibility
of Dave Case. During this time, he has taken over 1,800 pictures
for the monthly meetings while he and his photo team have shot over
3,500 pictures for both the May and November events. A portion of these
pictures appear on the chapter’s website. All of the pictures can be
previewed at www.damaca.smugmug.com/pmi/.
Volunteer of the Quarter 4Q09:
Sandy Sandlin has been named our Volunteer of the Quarter.
Sandy works with the Programs' Evaluation Team to streamline the process
and to make it easier for everyone to review the results. The team
that he is leading tabulates survey results from each of the eight monthly
meetings held each year:
There are currently satellite sites in Camden,
Fairfield, Iselin, Princeton, and Roseland. While the amount of
work is steadily increasing, the team is looking for ways to provide
the results quickly. Through Sandy's efforts, the Evaluation Team
is a strong team which always remains positive and willing to help.
- Around 175 - 200 people at the main site
- 10 - 25 people at each of the satellite
Volunteer of the Quarter 3Q09:
Volunteer extraordinaire would best describe Barbara Fuller.
Barbara has been a member of the New Jersey Chapter since 2001.
Barbara has been a PMP for over 10 years.
She has been actively involved in leading the Career Networking
Group since 2006. Under Barbara’s direction, she has transformed the
Career Networking Group from chapter members in transition searching for
a job to a true networking forum. In addition to providing a venue
for chapter members to network with each other, Barbara has been very instrumental
in bringing in speakers to educate and motivate. Speakers have
coached Career Networking Group members in the art of communication,
as well as boosting confidence. Group members and participants have
truly mastered the art of networking that goes well beyond job search.
The group meets at 5:30 prior to regularly scheduled chapter meetings
each month. By attending these meetings and sessions, members have
learned how to create a resume that gets a second look, honed interviewing
skills and perfected the effective 30 second elevator pitch.
Barbara was the program manger for the Seminar @ Sea event
in 2008. It was the first time such an event was offered by the
New Jersey Chapter and Barbara accepted and rose to the challenge!
She worked tirelessly to negotiate contracts with suppliers, including
the cruise ship, attract sponsors to participate in the event, secure
dynamic speakers, and provide a venue of overall fun. Barbara successfully
achieved a mix of fun and learning to all participants’ satisfaction.
Most recently Barbara program managed the successful Career Workshop
held at Rutgers University this past June. The theme of the workshop
was getting your career in shape for summer. In addition to securing
Rutgers School of Business as a host/sponsor and inviting career coaches,
Barbara also taught an elevator pitch session herself.
After completing her undergraduate and graduate education in
Ohio, she relocated to Dallas, Texas and soon connected with AT&T
where she worked for 21 years. To take on additional challenges
as an in-house consultant, AT&T relocated her to New Jersey.
While at AT&T, Barbara held various positions of increasing responsibility
focused on program and project delivery. Her final assignment
at AT&T was establishing and running a PMO. Her work there caused
a transformation in the information technology organization; the people,
the processes and the client perception.
Barbara left AT&T to pursue her own business within the project
management consulting arena. Her company is called Process
and Project Solutions, Inc.. She has successfully built her
client base utilizing project management skills to manage large scale
initiatives for customers or to provide process or project consulting
expertise. Recently she formed a professional and personal coaching
business for individuals, entrepreneurs and companies called “Focus
on You, Now”. It embraces her passion of developing people and teams
using her many years of coaching experience.
When asked about her successes whether in her corporate life,
as an entrepreneur or a leader of volunteers, she recognizes
the talent, and excellence of the people on the teams she has led.
Volunteer of the Quarter 2Q09:
Maureen Sammis has been a member of the New Jersey Chapter
since 1992, when she achieved her PMP status. She has been a role model
of a volunteer for more than 7 years, mainly supporting the Symposium
and the International Project Management Day events with communications.
She has also contributed two poster presentations to chapter symposia.
The Symposium Communications Team that Maureen leads is our
connection to the world. The role has grown through the years.
Currently, Maureen’s team develops content and writes articles for
the chapter web site, for specific e-mail notifications, for chapter
newsletters, and for PMI News articles. These pieces of journalism
involve pre-event and post-event objectives, and rely on input from
the entire Symposium Team. Maureen’s team takes feedback gracefully,
while meeting the deadlines. You know what is going on with upcoming
symposium and International Project Management Day events, thanks to
Maureen and her team members.
Maureen spent 35 years of her career with AT&T. For her
last 5 years, she was the Vice President of Customer Service,
serving large business customers with worldwide networks.
She was one of the first executives on the AT&T Project Management
Organization board. After retiring from AT&T in 2004, Maureen
has taken on new challenges. She currently consults for Creative Resources,
interfacing with customers in the gourmet food industry to design, develop,
and deliver custom packaging, which is created in China. Her
extensive project management skills, as well as her communication and
diplomacy skills, are used daily.
Volunteer of the Quarter 1Q09:
While many students who have taken PMINJ Chapter’s PMP Exam
Prep class are familiar with our talented instructor team, the
class would not be possible without the tremendous dedication of
Steve Gould, a less visible volunteer who works behind the scenes
to ensure the course runs smoothly and professionally. And although
the instructor team has varied from class to class, Steve has remained
a constant - supporting this class quietly and relentlessly since 2001.
Steve has multiple responsibilities. All students receive a
large binder of materials that include a variety of formats. Steve
is responsible for coordinating the printing and distribution
of these materials, using his excellent negotiation skills to find the
lowest price and resolve various problems with printing facilities. His
dedication and flexibility has enabled smooth transitions over the years
as our materials grew from 500 to 800 pages, from overhead transparencies
to computer-based slides, from hotel sites to formal training facilities.
And on 3 Saturdays of each year for the past 8 years, no matter
the location, no matter the weather, while the rest of the world is
sleeping, Steve is up at the crack of dawn delivering the handouts to
But Steve is not the kind of person to let his responsibilities
end at the delivery. He always takes the extra step to distribute
materials during class and follow-up with diverse student requests,
whether to adjust a thermostat, or replace a light bulb in the LCD
projector; he's even moved walls in training rooms. No matter
the situation, Steve always embodies the PMP Code of Conduct by treating
everyone with courtesy and respect. While tensions may rise,
he remains a cool and calming presence, and always gets the job done.
Probably the most difficult of his responsibilities is maintaining
version control of the materials. Because different instructors
customize their sections, or the PMBOK undergoes revisions, or
updates are made in the spirit of continuous improvement, there are
always changes being made. Therefore managing the version control
is an absolute essential element. It is a very difficult task,
and like everything else, Steve handles it with aplomb and good humor.
Steve's relentless dedication makes the chapter’s PMP Prep Course a best
in class offering.
Volunteer of the Quarter 4Q08:
Countless contributions were made by volunteers on the 2007-2008
PMI/NJ Programs team.
While everyone worked hard to make these meetings successful, Jane
Banfield efforts have been instrumental in the success of the
Besides working with the caterers and the audiovisual contacts,
she has also interacted closely with the satellite sites to ensure
that the people in these locations are able to hear what is going
on at the meetings as well having the ability to ask questions.
This has resulted in her visiting the main meeting locations and
arriving at the main location the day of the meeting anywhere from
mid afternoon to a couple of hours before the start of the meeting.
She has spent hours working with the audiovisual contact at the main
meeting location adjusting the equipment to improve the sound quality.
Due to her patience and attention to detail, the attendees at the
satellite locations have had very good experiences. In fact, the contact
for the Marlton location sent a note to the Board thanking us for
Volunteer of the Quarter 3Q08:
Eileen Szperka brings more than 30 years of experience in health
care, financial, clinical and management information systems to her
PMI NJ chapter volunteering. She also brings a can-do attitude and terrific
people skills, which are needed on the Symposium Facilities Team. Eileen
has been the Team Lead for Facilities for the past 3 symposium events,
including new locations with record-setting attendance. Before that,
Eileen was a proactive member of the Symposium Facilities Team for over
The Symposium Facilities Team is where the rubber hits the
road. There are significant planning as well as execution and closing
activities, and tremendous amounts of interdependencies to be managed.
Eileen is responsible for selecting the symposium locations, negotiating
the facilities, A/V, and hotel contracts, addressing the changing needs
of speakers and vendors, providing the essential layout diagrams that help
attendees navigate the events easily, ensuring that the A/V is perfect
and has back-ups, and most importantly, that the food part of the experience
is excellent both in terms of quality and service. As we have more events
and events get longer and more complicated in terms of programs, the challenges
of the Facilities Team increase, but Eileen has built a strong team and
mentored a co-lead, which will help us continue in this area with excellence.
Eileen’s thoughts on her PMI NJ volunteering experience:
my PMP Certification in July, 2005, I decided that I didn’t want
to belong to an organization and not be active. Then I went
to the PMI NJ November Symposium and was so impressed with the group
that I signed-up to be on a committee. Since then I have been
active on the Facilities Team for the Symposium, first as a team
member and in 2007 as Team Lead.
on the Facilities Team can be challenging at times, it is very rewarding
when things come together and you hear from the attendees that it
is the best event they have attended. Volunteering has broadened my
understanding of how project management impacts other industries.
It allows you to network with people you might otherwise not have met.
I have had the chance to be mentored by some individuals that I see
as role models and I have developed friendships that I know will last.”
Volunteer of the Quarter 1Q08:
For years, she has been a great asset to the PMI NJ Chapter
successfully supporting the monthly meetings, the Annual Symposium,
PMP training class, International Project Management day, and more.
Kelly started volunteering as the Project Manager – On-Line Registration
in 2004. At that time, there was a project manager responsible for
manual registration and one for on-line registration. Due to her
diligence and willingness to please, this volunteer position has expanded.
Starting this year, registration is only available through the on-line
registration and therefore the entire registration process is her
She works behind the scenes to ensure that the online registration
system runs smoothly and the resulting list of registrants is
correct. She is the one who you contact if you encounter such issues
as your password for the on-line registration system is suddenly
no longer valid or if you never received an e-mail message indicating
that your registration was accepted by the system. In addition,
she maintains the list of those individuals who decided to take advantage
of registering for the 8 meetings to be held during the program year
in September and checks that the final registration list is accurate.
She also creates the formatted registration list used by the On-Site
Registration Team and Career Networking Program Group as well as
the one for generating the name tags for each evening meeting. She
trained someone to print the name tags and serves as the backup to this
In addition, Kelly has become in many cases the first point
of contact for not only questions related to Programs registration
but also the other events sponsored by our chapter. She takes the
time to find the appropriate individual to respond directly to each
member’s inquiries. Given all of Kelly's efforts to support the chapter,
Kelly is well deserving of this PMI/NJ "Volunteer of the Quarter”
Volunteer of the Quarter 4Q07:
Being “The A/V Guy” is one of those jobs that if done well,
is in fact invisible! So, many of you may not know Harry the way
the PMI NJ Symposium Planning Team does! But join us in recognizing
Harry as our first "Volunteer of the Quarter”. We are starting this
form of recognition to show our appreciation for some invaluable team
players, without whom our events would not be successful.
Harry joined our Facilities Team as the point person for audio-visual
needs in 2004. He has now successfully supported 5 major events
at four different locations! Every space has different challenges
in terms of ensuring that the speaker can be seen and heard by everyone
in the audience. He is responsible to solicit, select, manage, and
work with subcontractors. There are the technology unknowns! And there
is the holding your breath phenomenon on the day of the event, in
between responding to calls to fix a microphone that has suddenly stopped
working or other glitch. In all of this, Harry has shown leadership,
patience, perseverance, adherence to the highest standards of quality,
and, yes, good cheer! For this we honor him!
Harry can only recall “one time when there was a potential for problems.
It was before the 2006 Symposium, when the in-house A/V contractor
could not get the dual projectors working in the General Session room.
He was up until about 1:00 AM trying to fix it. Luckily the technician
who came at 6:00 AM was able to fix the problem.” And no one except
the planning team knew about it!
Harry recommends volunteering to chapter members: “Volunteering
is not only a good way to get PDUs, it is also good for getting
noticed and for networking. I’m glad the chapter has given me the
opportunity to do something I enjoy.”
Stop by at the upcoming IPM Day Event November 1 or at next
May’s Symposium to let Harry know what a great contribution he