Parsippany Good Scout Award Honorees

Mohammed Ahmed, Chairman Robert Peluso, Laura Wohland, Chris Mazzarella, Jennifer Thurkauf and Chrissy Cianci

PARSIPPANY — The Patriots Path Council, Boy Scouts of America, honored five Parsippany individuals on Thursday, December 2, at the Hanover Manor. The individuals Mohammed Ahmed, Chrissy Cianci, Chris Mazzarella, Jennifer Thurkauf, and Laura Wohland were among the honorees. Robert Peluso, President of the Parsippany Area Chamber of Commerce was the dinner chairman. Parsippany Hills High School Junior Jonah Lance presented “What Scouting Means to Me.” (Click here to read Jonah’s journey in Scouting)

Laura Wohland

Laura Wohland, President Kiwanis Club of Greater Parsippany Foundation, is a quality and compliance leader with deep luxury goods experience across jewelry, diamonds, gemstones, leather, eyewear, baby goods, and home accessories. Laura held the position of director of quality assurance operations while working at Tiffany & Co.

She held that role for eight years. Laura currently manages customer experience for Open Road BMW Service Department in Morristown. She is the immediate past President of the Kiwanis Club of Greater Parsippany and current President of Kiwanis Club of Greater Parsippany Foundation and has been a member of the club for three years.

Jennifer Thurkauf

Jennifer Thurkauf is Manager, Patient Access Morristown Medical Center; Past Chief, Life Member Parsippany Volunteer Ambulance Squad.

Jennifer Thurkauf was born and raised in Parsippany. She is currently the manager of patient access at Morristown Medical Center. A graduate of Parsippany Hills High School, she is currently finishing her Bachelor of Science degree at William Paterson University. Jennifer is also a life member, past chief, and past president of the Parsippany Volunteer First Aid Squad and currently serves on many committees.

After having children, Jennifer remembered her amazing experiences as a Girl Scout and volunteer EMT for the Boy Scouts, and she wanted her children to have the same experience. Jennifer is now serving as the Cubmaster of Cub Scout Pack 177, and the service unit manager for the Parsippany Girl Scouts, sharing her past joy of Scouting with her children and others. She is also an alumnus of The Hugh O’Brian Youth Leadership Foundation.

Jennifer is married to P.J. Thurkauf, who owns two local UPS Stores. She met her husband while he was volunteering on the Rockaway Neck Fire Department and Rockaway Neck First Aid Squad. They have two children, Abigail and Alexander, who both plan to volunteer in the community when they are old enough.

Volunteering has been a way of life for Jennifer since she was young. Starting with helping at local swim meets and at her church, she realized early on in life the importance of giving back to the community that gave to you. After spending years on the Parsippany recreation track team, Jennifer then became one of the coaches, helping to allow other children to have the same amazing experience she had. After joining the first aid squad, Jennifer became a CPR instructor. The 28 years on the first aid squad have proven to her time and time again the importance of the squad motto: Neighbors Helping Neighbors.

Chris Mazzarella

Chris Mazzarella: Creator Parsippany Supporting Our Town Facebook Group and President Par-Troy East Little League.

Chris Mazzarella grew up in Union, and along with his sister, Jamie, was raised by his single mother, Cathy. He graduated from Union High School in 1992, and shortly after graduation became a produce manager at A&P. In 2002 Chris became a produce/floral supervisor and eventually a store manager. He left A&P in 2009 to become a district manager at ShopRite, and in 2015 moved into his current position as a produce specialist for Stop and Shop.

In 2005 Chris met his wife, Diana, who was born and raised in Parsippany and is a Parsippany High School graduate. They married in 2007. Chris and Diana’s first child, Dylan, was born in February 2009 and they moved to Morris Plains from Bridgewater in 2010. The couple had their second child, Ava, in April of 2012, and moved to their current home in Parsippany in 2012 as well.

Chris joined Par-Troy East (PTE) Little League in 2013 when Dylan started tee-ball, became information officer in 2015, and in 2017 became PTE president. When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, Chris was able to team up with Rich Leitner, Dennis Murphy, and his wife, Diana, to start the “Parsippany Supporting Our Town” Facebook page. The page was a spot to help the town with many different things from fundraising and food drives to advertising local businesses.

At the same time, Chris joined friends Ted Scanziale, Rob Zwigard, Nick Kraus, and Justine Roche to form “Front Line Morris,” and together they raised well over $100,000 in cash and donations to serve over 10,000 meals to front line workers, first responders, orphans and families at the Jersey Battered Women’s Shelter. “Front Line Morris” became an official nonprofit organization as of December 2020.

Chrissy Cianci

Chrissy Cianci is Division Director of Parsippany Soccer Club. Chrissy is currently leading a team of solution architects and technology specialists at Red Hat. Prior to this role, she led global IT teams that built healthcare and digital marketing software systems. She started her career with a master’s degree in computer science and a bachelor’s degree in literature. Chrissy is on the board of directors for the Parsippany Soccer Club and enjoys traveling with her family.

Mohammed Ahmed

Mohammed Ahmed is Religious Director ICCC (Islamic Community Cultural Center). Dr. Mohammed Ibn Ahmed is a behavioral psychologist and psychiatrist working at Norristown State Hospital in Pennsylvania. He also runs five outpatient clinics in New Jersey.

Ahmed serves as executive director of Islamic Chaplaincy and is a founder of a philanthropy organization called ”Be a Mercy Foundation.’ He is also the Muslim chaplain of Bergen County and Somerset County sheriff’s offices, and he established and worked with many religious organizations throughout the tri-state area. Lastly, along with Tajammul R. Khokhar. Ahmed founded the Islamic Community Cultural Center (ICCC) in Parsippany and serves as religious advisor and director.

Previous Good Scout Award Recipients included: 1994: Bruce T. Benson, and F. Huston Taylor;1998: Carol Dadaian, Mimi Letts and David Schaffer; 1999: Nicholas Cerbo, James William Kelly, Kathryn McDonagh, and Lois Plust; 2000: Loretta S. Viglione, David L. Bahn, Jayne Beline, Timothy C. Brennan Ed.D., and Michael J. dePierro; 2002: Elaine Britcher, Robbie Furman, and Robert J. Peluso; 2017: Frank L. Cahill, Tony Cerbo III, Karen DeChristopher, Frank lannetta, MD, FAAFP, and  Casey (Kaushik) Parikh.

2018: Mo Abdelhadi, Assemblywoman BettyLou DeCroce, Al Goldberg, Carlos Guzman, Adam Bahaa Kandil, and Carol Tiesi; 2019: Catherine “Cathy” Cerbo, Silvia E. Cooper, Patrolman Remo D’Alessandro, Stephen J. Priola, Rev. Msgr. Herbert K. Tillyer, P.A. and Randy F. Tortorello; 2020: 1UMMAH, Patricia “Miss Pat” De Vita, Leonard A. Fariello, June Madia, Gordon Meth, P.E. and Anthony Franco’s Pizzeria.