Founder and Executive Director of Courage To Connect NJ. She served as mayor of Long Hill Township in 2006 and ran for NJ State Senate in 2007. As a result of her political experiences, she realized that real change needed to come from the people. Gina produced the educational video “Can New Jersey Connect?” and developed a public presentation that teaches people about the redundant structure of our 566 municipalities in NJ. In addition, she has coauthored the “Courage to Connect NJ Guidebook,” a step-by-step citizen’s guide to consolidation. These guidelines help local groups of residents to move the conversation about consolidation forward. Gina has owned and operated Gina’s Tennis World in Berkeley Heights since 1983, developing many nationally ranked junior players. She played tennis professionally in 1980-1981. Gina’s business, political and educational experience has culminated in her leadership position as Executive Director of CtoC-NJ.
Co-founder and Secretary of the Board of CtoC-NJ. Wendy shared Gina’s vision of a simpler municipal structure in New Jersey. They created an educational presentation for the public that shares this vision around the state. She currently manages Gina’s Tennis World. Before becoming the business manager at Gina’s Tennis World, Wendy operated her own businesses in the fields of computer system analysis, documentation and training and as a home renovation and maintenance specialist. Her years of experience running various small businesses and managing Gina’s campaigns for elected office gave her the expertise to facilitate the operation of this campaign for the State of New Jersey. Wendy has a BA and a certificate in adult education from Douglass College, Rutgers University.
Donovan brings an education in Landscape Architecture and Sustainable Environments to the Board of CtoC-NJ. His experience with land development projects that span multiple municipalities, has led Donovan to develop an interest in municipal consolidation. Living in California, he saw the efficiencies and capabilities of communities of 50,000 residents and hopes to facilitate New Jersey’s communities in finding a more efficient and prosperous span of local government.
Anton T. Lahnston, Ph.D.
During the period from 2010 to 2013 Lahnston was the Chairman of the Princeton Consolidation and Shared Services Study Commission (CSSSC). Within that time frame he first served as the chair of the commission that led to the successful vote to approve consolidation oh November 8, 2011. Following the approval he continued to lead the Commission and worked with the Princeton elected officials and the Transition Task Force to bring about the full consolidation of the Princeton Borough and Princeton Township on January 1, 2013. Anton’s professional experience has focused on business and public organizations for over 35 years in the areas of organizational transformation, leadership development, teamwork, and building new organizations. Working with many Forturne 1000 companies on a global basis he has focused on helping organizations to achieve dramatically improved business results. He has also consulted to a number of government organizations including the IRS, TSA, and USPS.Mr. Lahnston previously served on university faculty and administration for over 13 years. From 1972 to 1985 he was a faculty member at Boston University in the School of Education and as faculty and administration in the School of Management. He was also the Associate Director of Executive Programs for Boston University’s School of Management, consulting to executives and managers from numerous global businesses.Anton Lahnston has an A.B. Degree in Sociology and Anthropology from Brandeis University and a Ph.D. from the University of Washington (Seattle).
Chad was the last mayor of Princeton Township, New Jersey – having spearheaded the successful merger of Princeton Borough and Princeton Township. The first major town merger in a century, Princeton’s consolidation has generated considerable savings, improved operating efficiency, and as a result, it has created a template for other towns to use in evaluating consolidation. As Mayor, Chad wrote the original proposal for consolidation and served on both the consolidation commission and the transition task force to successfully implement consolidation. In addition, he created an open application process for all boards/commissions and established a Citizens Finance Advisory Commission to bring private sector professionals into the municipal budget process. Professionally, Chad is a First Vice President – Investments at UBS in Princeton.
Gabe joins Courage to Connect NJ as a Board member with experience in both the private and public sectors. Gabe’s portfolio of work includes employment at multiple prestigious companies and institutions, ranging from Wall Street banks to think tanks and government contractors in Washington, D.C. Currently, Gabe serves as the Chief Financial Officer of a subsidiary of a Fortune 500 company. In his capacity as CFO, Gabe oversees all financial management, planning, and business operations for the company. He participates regularly in strategic growth discussions with corporate leadership and works closely with other senior executives to manage the day-to-day operations of the company. Gabe’s experience in the public sector includes two terms as Mayor of Alexandria Township in Hunterdon County. During his appointment, Gabe led several key township-wide and regional initiatives, including advocating for a municipal and school consolidation study. He has previously served as a member of the League of Municipalities’ Legislative Committee, a member of the Alexandria Township Planning Board, as a Municipal Housing Liaison and a Joint Court Liaison. Gabe also currently serves on the board of a political action committee that supports local candidates as they seek municipal and county office.
Craig Guarente is the founder and CEO of Palisade Compliance. Since 2011 Palisade has been helping businesses of all sizes take back control of their Oracle relationship, achieve license compliance, and save money. In three short years Palisade Compliance has become the world’s leading independent Oracle focused license, contract, and compliance advisory firm. Before founding Palisade Craig was Oracle’s Global Vice President of Contracts, Business Practices, Migrations and License Compliance. Craig built these organizations from the ground up ultimately leading a team of over 1,200 professionals in 35+ countries. In addition to this work Craig was very active in Oracle’s merger, acquisition, and integration strategy where he successfully spearhead over 40 acquisition integrations. Craig is also a thought leader in the areas of contract administration, contract automation, outsourcing/offshoring, contract organization design, and business
process reengineering. Craig has been an advisor to companies all over the world helping them to optimize and streamline their contracting policies, practices, and tools. He has been a featured speaker at conferences for groups such as the International Association For Contract And Commercial Management (IACCM) and The International Business Software Managers Association (IBSMA).