SERV marks 35th Anniversary

SERV Behavioral Health System, Inc. marked its 35th year of operation on Nov. 13 with two simultaneous celebrations connected via its new teleconferencing equipment.

Employees and outside guests of SERV’s Mercer and Middlesex County offices marked the occasion with a reception in the Ewing office on Scotch Road, while employees and guests of Union, Passaic and Hudson County offices celebrated in the Passaic office.

Among the activities in the Ewing office were a slide presentation “unveiling” of the new “SERV” sign which was installed a week earlier on the exterior of the three- story Ewing Corporate Center, where SERV’s corporate offices occupy the top two floors; and an opening speech by President and CEO Gary van Nostrand about SERV’s history since 1974. Employees and guests also received a commemorative glass tumbler with SERV’s logo engraved on it.

The much anticipated portion of the event was the drawing of the winners of SERV Foundation’s Scholarship Fund 50/50 Cash Raffle. SERV employees sold tickets for $10 each and raised $7,790, which was split 25, 15 and 10 percent among three winners. First-place winner was Ivan Punchatz of Yardley, Pa., who won $1,947.50. Mr. Punchatz is chairman of the SERV Properties and Management Board of Directors and vice chairman and past chairman of the SERV Behavioral Health System Board.   Second-place winner was Janet Mercer of Lawrenceville with $1,168.50. Third-place winner was Ward Bauman of Princeton, with $779. Mr. Bauman is secretary of the SERV Foundation Board of Directors. Employees who were winners of Visa gift cards for selling the most tickets were: first place, Marilyn Ticktin, Director of Housing Development, who received $100 for selling 63 tickets; and tie for second place,   Christopher Sales, Director of Training, and Patricia Delgado, Director of Nursing, who each received $50 for selling 50 tickets.

The first-time teleconferencing of the simultaneous parties was made possible by our stellar IT Department, headed by Gil Santana, who with his staff researched and installed the equipment in less than a month. During the parties, IT’s Liz Koch operated the camera in the Ewing office, while Diane DiPietro, office manager in Passaic, made sure the camera in Passaic captured events there.

Both celebrations, which were held from noon to 1:30 p.m., featured a variety of sandwiches and beverages and cake. Diane DiPietro reported that approximately 50 people attended the Passaic party and Lisa Gerth, Development Specialist, said that nearly 85 people joined the Ewing celebration.

Neither event would have been possible without the help of employee volunteers, who graciously assisted in decorating the venues, registering the attendees, selling raffle tickets, and cleaning up.