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Veritas Award 1992

Excellence in Human Concerns
Marilyn MacNee Coburn ‘48

A friend and mentor as well as a leader and innovator.  An individual who is well known and highly respected. A woman who is loved by the young men and women with disabilities who have directly benefited from her untiring efforts of their behalf.  An advocate for the mentally handicapped, whim she calls her “special children.” All of these words describe Marilyn MacNee Coburn.

The mother of a mentally challenged son, Marilyn has been involved in helping the mentally handicapped for over two decades. After receiving her degree in education at Caldwell College, she taught the academically talented as well as special education classes in New Jersey and Connecticut.  She became involved in human service after her fourth child, Jerry, was diagnosed as mentally handicapped. But, he, too, has been a recipient of numerous awards – and is now serving on the New Jersey Board of Special Olympics.

In 1979, Marilyn moved to Sea Girt, New Jersey, and became an advocate for mentally handicapped individuals, creating a comprehensive recreation program for the disabled of Wall Township.  Through her efforts, more than 100 individuals enjoy dance socials, basketball, swimming, handball, bowling, athletics, aerobics, and excursions. She has started special training programs to instill the mentally handicapped the confidence needed to make them socially adjusted and capable of functioning in the job market.  In addition, she founded ‘Friends of the Special Children’ non-profit group, which provides athletic and social programs.

Marilyn’s work goes beyond her direct involvement with the mentally handicapped.  She serves on the Board of Directors at the Monmouth County Chapter of the Association for Retarded Citizens and as president of the Wall Township PTO Special Education program.  She assists, too, with the Monmouth County Park System Special Populations Program. Very involved with the New Jersey Special Olympics, Marilyn assists the group with their programs and national and international events.  New Jersey Special Olympics awarded Friends of Special Children (Marilyn’s program) the award for ‘Outstanding Athlete Training Program’ in 1996-1997. They awarded her the Lifetime Achievement Award in 2000 and, in 2004, the group presented the Colburns Family of the Year Award.

Marilyn’s work as an advocate for the mentally handicapped was also recognized in 1989, when she received the Evelyn Dolan Citizens Award  presented at the Governor’s Conference on Recreation for the Disabled, the award is the highest given in the state of New Jersey for Advocacy and Promotion of Recreation for the Disabled.  In 2004, Marilyn and her husband, George, received the New Jersey Manasquan Elks Citizens of the Year Award for devoted service to children and the community. Always seeking new ways to help the mentally handicapped, Marilyn took steps to be incorporated so she can apply for grants to expand the programs already instituted.

“Marilyn took her knowledge acquired at Caldwell and applied those values to the challenged that unfolded in her life,” commented Rita Loudon, a classmate of Colburn.  “She is a mother who has allowed mentally the handicapped to sustain and enjoy lives that otherwise may have been rejected by society.”

Christine Colburn, Marilyn’s daughter, extended the family story: “Mom had another son, my brother, Jim (George J. Colburn) who died in this last year after a long battle with mental illness.  Just as with Jerry, she never gave up but fought for him like a lioness with her cub, always loving him, advocating for him — and demanding that the greater world know and learn that an individual with a disability is still a person deserving of respect and a place in the world.” Mom shows “that one person, with nothing more than her will and the love in her heart, can change the world.”

Excellence in Environmental Law
Lisa Murtha Bromberg, Esq. ‘80

Lisa Murtha Bromberg is a principal in the law firm of Porzio, Bromberg & Newman, PC in Morristown, New Jersey.  She received a B.A. in English, summa cum laude, from Caldwell in 1980. Three years later she graduated first in her class at Seton Hall University School of Law.

An associate of the Environmental Law Institute, Lisa counsels and represents clients in environmental matters, including environmental compliance, permitting, property and Brownfields development, OSHA issues and property transfer litigation.

Taking her fight against unnecessary regulations beyond the negotiation table, Lisa has written several articles on the subject.  New Jersey Lawyer printed her article, “Regulations, Do They Hinder Protection?” while the Practical Lawyer published, “What You Need to Know About Environmental Audits: How the Hidden Hazards of Doing an Environmental Audit Could Ruin You,” co-authored with Edward A. Hogan.

A lecturer, as well as a lawyer and a writer, Bromberg’s presentations have included, “Environmental Cleanups: Send the Bill to Your Insurance Company”, “Environmental Emergency: The First 24 Hours,” “The ECRA Bug – How to Recognize and Cure the Symptoms,” and “What to Do Before 60 Minutes Comes Calling.” She is a regular presenter at such prestigious legal organizations as the Defense Research Institute and the American Bar Association.

In addition to her speaking engagements, Bromberg presents an “Overview of Environmental Laws and Regulations” at OSHA Training Courses regularly sponsored by the New Jersey Department of Labor.  Lisa is a member of both the New Jersey and the New York Bar Associations, Environmental Law Section, the Defense Research Institute, and the Environmental Law Institute.

Her list of publications is extensive and includes numerous articles published in the New Jersey Law Journal, including “Surviving Environmental Justice Attacks” (2003), “State of the State Address Sets Environmental Agenda” (2003), “Proposed Revisions to Remediation Rules Promise Significant Changes” (2003), and “Obstacles in New Well Testing Law.” (2002).

Excellence in Psychodrama
Antonina TerraNova Garcia ‘66

Antonina “Nina” Garcia has a long and impressive curriculum vitae.  Certified as a drama therapist as well as a trainer, educator and practitioner in psychodrama, sociometry and group psychotherapy.  Nina is a distinguished leader in her field. She has served as Chairperson of the American Board of Examiners in Psychodrama, Sociometry, and Group Psychotherapy; President of the New Jersey Chapter of the American Society of Group Psychotherapy and Psychodrama, which she co-founded, and Chairperson of the American Theatre Association Therapeutic Theatre Project.

In addition, Nina has been a member of the Executive Board of the National Association for Drama Therapy, was elected a Fellow of the American Society of Group Psychotherapy and Psychodrama, and became the first female executive editor of the Journal of Group Psychotherapy and Psychodrama.

Nina’s career in theatre began at Caldwell College where she majored in English and directed plays of all genres, including some avant garde productions.  After earning her B.A. degree, Nina continued her studies at Catholic University in Washington, D.C., where she received a Master’s degree in 1968. A year later, Nina joined the faculty of Brookdale Community College in Lincroft, New Jersey, where she has been a professor for more than 20 years.

Through volunteer work in role playing with the State Police and Monmouth County Police Academies, Nina became interested in psychodrama.  She enrolled in Rutgers University, New Jersey and in 1981, was awarded an Ed.D in creative Arts Education. In 1983, she became board certified as a trainer, educator, and practitioner in psychodrama, sociometry and group psychotherapy.  That same year she also earned a M.S.W. from Rutgers University. Since being certified, Nina has maintained a private practice and conducted psychodrama training groups in New Jersey and Florida, as well as in Canada and Australia. She developed a Creative Arts in Therapeutic Settings Option at Brookdale College, a program she still coordinates.  She has also served as a consultant to Rutgers University Graduate School in Social Work.

Always seeking to learn more, in 1986, Nina studied imagery and meditation at the American Imagery Institute and, since 1987, has been a student at Inner Tuning Systems.  She became a Registered Drama Therapist in 1987, and in 1989, together with Dr. Patricia Sternberg of Hunter College, New York co-authored the book, Sociodrama: Who’s in Your Shoes? Their book was the first to be devoted specifically to the subject of sociodrama.

Throughout the 1980s, Nina has addressed numerous conferences, including: the American Society of Group Psychotherapy and Psychodrama, the American Orthopsychiatric Association, the National Association for Drama Therapy, the National Coalition of Arts Therapy Association, the International Symposium for the Advancement of Group Work, and the American Theatre Association.  At the Association for Theatre in Higher Education, she explained how sociodrama can claridy ethical issues while at the Association for Humanistic Psychology she talked about psychodramatic techniques for everyday life.

Nina has continued her interest in the theatre and has directed 60 plays, including A Man for All Seasons, Equus, and Gemini, plus a variety of new before produced plays.