PARSIPPANY — Boy Scouts of America, Patriots’ Path Council, honored local citizens at the Third Annual Parsippany Good Scout Award Dinner held on Tuesday, March 12 at the Hanover Manor in East Hanover.
This year’s honorees were Catherine “Cathy” Cerbo, Silvia E. Cooper, Patrolman Remo D’Alessandro, Stephen J. Priola, Rev. Msgr. Herbert K. Tillyer, P.A., and Randy F. Tortorello.
The event recognized these six outstanding citizens for their community service, as evidenced by their leadership and interests within the Parsippany community, and for their embodiment of the values of the century old Scout Oath and Law in their personal and professional lives. The event co-chairs were 2018 Parsippany Good Scout Award Recipient Carol Tiesi, and Robert Peluso.
Parsippany is a part of the Boy Scouts of America, Patriots’ Path Council which serves 17,000 youth in over 400 Scouting units in communities throughout Middlesex, Morris, Somerset, Sussex, and Union Counties.
Catherine “Cathy” Cerbo; Cerbo Lumber & Hardware; Past President Parsippany Woman’s Club – Cathy is a lifelong Parsippany resident and graduate of its public school system. She cares about her community and is family-oriented. While at Troy Hills Elementary School she was a member of Girl Scout Troop #488 and her mother served as Leader. In her senior year of high school she was named a Rotary Outstanding Young Person. With a B.A. from Drew University and an M.B.A. from Fairleigh Dickinson University she previously worked in market research for a subsidiary of AC Nielsen. While at Drew, Cathy was the recipient of the Gold Award in her senior year. As an alum, she sat on the College Alumni Board. Her family business, Cerbo Lumber and Hardware, celebrated its 70th anniversary last year and is a member of the Montville Township and Parsippany Area Chambers of Commerce. Cathy is a member of Morris County School of Technology Carpentry Advisory Board. She is a member of the Kiwanis Club of Greater Parsippany, a Past Vice President and recipient of the George F. Hixson Award. She is an active member of the Woman’s Club of Parsippany-Troy Hills, having served as Club President and held District positions. She was placed on the New Jersey State Federation of Women’s Clubs Honor Roll and awarded the Order of the Lily and was the New Jersey recipient of the General Federation of Women’s Clubs Jennie Award. Cathy is a NJ Sharing Network Ambassador and active member of the Morris County Organ Transplant/Donate Life Group. Her passion for advocacy scarred when her father had a life saving heart transplant in 1996. She was a proud recipient of the Lakeland Hills YMCA Parsippany Citizen of the Year in 2009. Her lace father, Nick, was a past recipient of chis Good Scout Award. She also followed in her father’s footsteps by attending Girls State in high school. The Cerbo family’s commitment to the community is a way of life; Cathy is a proud to continue. She’s grateful to her family for their encouragement and support in all of her activities.
Silvia E. Cooper, Kiwanis Club of Greater Parsippany member; Parsippany Branch Manager Boiling Springs Savings Bank – Born and raised in Mexico, Ms. Cooper graduated from Universidad Autonoma of Guadalajara with a degree in Journalism and Mass Communication. She continued her education and received her master’s degree in Public Relations. In 1976, Ms. Cooper came to the United States and became the proud mother of twins in 1977. Her career took a different direction at this time and she devoted herself to raising her family. Once her children completed high school, Ms. Cooper began reentering the workforce.
While at her local bank, she asked if there were any opportunities when she was lead into the manager’s office right away for an interview. She found out she had a position from a post-it note left on her front door. This is how her banking career began with Powder Mill Bank. Shortly after her start with Powder Mill Bank, they were acquired by Valley National Bank. Here, Ms. Cooper had a successful career and rose to the rank of Vice President and Territory Sales Manager. After a happy tenure with Valley National Bank, Ms. Cooper took on a new opportunity in 2014 with Boiling Springs Savings Bank serving the Towaco, Montville, and Parsippany areas. Ms. Cooper loves her banking career and the communities she is part of. She has been known to volunteer anywhere that has asked for her help. She is now a proud grandmother of three grandchildren ages 19, 17, and 10 years old. In her free time, she loves traveling, reading and spending her time with family and friends.
Patrolman Remo D’Alessandro Community Outreach – Parsippany-Troy Hills Police Department – Patrolman Remo D’Alessandro is the Community Relations Officer for the Parsippany – Troy Hills Police Department. He is a former Marine who served in the Marine Corps Reserves from 1992 to 1998 while earning his Bachelor’s Degree in Sociology and Criminal Justice from Montclair State University and is a Life Member of the Totowa Born Volunteer Fire Department, where he volunteered for over 20 years. He started his career in law enforcement in 2001 with the Paterson Police Department where he served as a Patrol Officer and Drill Instructor for the Paterson Police Academy. In 2004 he transferred to the Parsippany Police Department where he was assigned to the Patrol Division. While in Patrol he was selected to be Field Training Officer for newly hired officers, a Firearms Instructor and Rifle Instructor. His experience in Patrol earned him two Life Saving Awards and a Command Citation. His passion and desire to interact with the community was recognized by his superiors who ultimately recommended him for the Community Relations Officer position when it became available in the Support Services Division in 2013. Officer D’Alessandro strived to make Community Relations a pivotal role in the service for the Township of Parsippany. He is present at all community events in and around Parsippany such as the Fall Festival and National Night Out. He revamped the 10 week Citizen Police Academy program and implemented a department YouTube channel to show the human sides behind the badge. In addition, he urged business owners within the community to participate in the first ever Coffee with a Cop, a national program that bridges the gap between citizens and police officers. In 2016, the department awarded him a second Command Citation. That same year, the Rotary Club selected him for the Officer of the Year Award for his efforts. He continues to interact with the community by offering presentations on Active Shooter for corporations in town as well as Scams & Identity Theft, Crime Prevention and Neighborhood Watch Program. He organizes tours of the police headquarters for Scouts and school students and is also a Drill Instructor for the Youth Explorers Program and Junior Police Academy.
Stephen J. Priola – Owner S.J. Priola Parsippany Funeral Service – At the young age of seven, after taking his first tour of a funeral home, Stephen J. Priola expressed an interest in the funeral service profession. Unlike most children, who change their career ideas at the drop of a hat, Stephen maintained his interest throughout his youth. He began working in funeral homes at age 16 while he was still enrolled in Parsippany High School, from which he later graduated in 1987. He went on to Drew University in Madison, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree in History and Sociology in 1991. In 1992, after being awarded membership in Mu Sigma Npha, a Mortuary Science Honor Society, Stephen graduated Cum Laude from the American Academy/McAllister Institute of Mortuary Science in New York, New York. He was licensed as a funeral director in 1993, at which time he founded the Stephen J. Priola Parsippany Funeral Service. The business operated from rented locations in Whippany and later Madison while Stephen sought a permanent location in Parsippany-Troy Hills. The current facility opened in September of 2000 on the property where the former landmark “Primo’s” had stood for many years, in the heart of of the Lake Hiawatha business district of Parsippany. The home is independently owned and operated by the Priola family who are longtime Parsippany residents. Stephen is assisted in the daily operations of the business by his parents Angela and Ron Priola, and a staff of ten part time attendants, most of which are retired after years of experience in other professions. Stephen Priola is heavily involved in the local community. He is a longtime member of St. Peter the Apostle Parish in Parsippany where he serves on the Parish Finance Council, as an usher, Eucharistic Minister, and member of the Lazarus and Adoration ministries. He is a member and Past President of the Parsippany Rotary Club, a member and Past President of the Montville UNICO Club, and the St. Pius X Knights of Columbus Council in Montville. He is also a member of the Parsippany and Montville Township Chambers of Commerce, and the Hiawatha Business Owner’s Association. Mr. Priola is a member and former board member of the New Jersey State Funeral Director’s Association and the Morris County Funeral Director’s Association where he served three terms as President. In the words of Mr. Priola, Stephen J. Priola Parsippany Funeral Service is all about “comfort, value and convenience.” The home is non-sectarian and serves all faiths and cultures. The detail-oriented staff is committed to providing personalized, white glove service at fair prices. Funeral options are available within the reach of every family including those who rely on SSI/Medicaid. Special requests are encouraged and accommodated whenever possible.
Rev. Msgr. Herbert K. Tillyer, P.A. Saint Peter the Apostle Catholic Church, Parsippany -Father Herb has been our pastor for 20 years now, since 1994. He was ordained in May 1968 after attending the Immaculate Conception Seminary in Darlington, NJ. Father Herb began at St. Virgil’s in Morris Plains. Then he taught religion and guidance at Paterson Catholic High School. Before coming to St. Peter, he was pastor at St. Paul’s in Prospect Park. Father has served the Diocese of Paterson since 1974, first as Vice Chancellor then as Chancellor for over 20 years. He also served as Vicar General. He is the president of several housing projects which serve low income persons in the diocese. He enjoys serving our parish now for a whole generation of parishioners.
Randy F. Tortorello – Parsippany Historic Sites Coordinator – Randy F. Tortorella is an accomplished interior designer and the owner of Randy Tortorella interiors, a firm started in 1985. Mr. Tortorella has been a member of the Parsippany Historical and Preservation Society since 1993 and has served as President for the past twenty-two years. He received a certificate in historical preservation from Drew University in 2001.
In 2003 Parsippany-Troy Hills Township Mayor, Mimi Letts, appointed Randy to the Parsippany Historic Advisory Committee and has been re-appointed by all succeeding mayors. Mr. Tortorella was chosen to be on the Morris County Historic Preservation Trust Fund Review Board in 2010 and served for eight years recommending more than $21.3 million in county grant funding. He was elected chairman of the board in 2018. Mr. Tortorella is currently the historic sites coordinator for the township. He oversees the operation of the Parsippany Historical Museum, the Old Littleton Schoolhouse and the restoration and rehabilitation of the township’s historic Smith/Baldwin House and Forge pond site. Randy joined the BSA as a Cub Scout and became a Boy Scout in 1966 with Troop 74 in Newark, where his father, Daniel, was a leader for 16 years. Randy attained Star Scout and was junior assistant Scoutmaster before leaving the troop in 1969. Presently Randy helps local Scouts with their Eagle Scout projects. When notified of the award he was able to recite the Scout Law and Scout Oath with few hesitations.