Women’s forum marks MLK Day
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Women’s forum marks MLK Day

Michelle Bradley, left, Janeece Freeman Clark, Amy Hughes, and Ellen Zimiles
Michelle Bradley, left, Janeece Freeman Clark, Amy Hughes, and Ellen Zimiles

To commemorate Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s birthday, Temple B’nai Abraham in Livingston held its Women’s Interfaith Forum on January 19. It’s been held annually for more than three decades under the sponsorship of the shul’s social action committee. The livestreamed the presentation, “Building Community: Supporting Local Businesses Owned by Women,” included five local entrepreneurs who described their businesses and gave insights into what has made them successful.

Michelle Bradley of Java’s Compos, talked about composting and how residents can compost to cut down on waste and enrich the environment. Janeece Freeman Clark, the Vanguard Theatre Company’s artistic director, talked about co-founding the Montclair troupe in 2015 to change the narrative around traditional theater. Vineeta Khanna of Livingston, who owns Orator Academy, discussed how her company works with adults and children to give them confidence both in public speaking and in navigating life. Ellen Zimiles described how she and her husband founded an independent, award-winning bookstore, Words, in Maplewood to create a welcoming atmosphere for people and families of all kinds—including young people diagnosed with autism—to pursue their love of literature. Amy Hughes talked about her business, Maplewood Mercantile, a cooperative market and design showroom specializing in vintage home furnishings, art, rugs, and handmade accessories.

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