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Girl Scouts of the Jersey Shore Gala on April 19 Honors Distinguished Leaders


 FARMINGDALE, NJ – (February 1, 2023) - Girl Scouts of the Jersey Shore will celebrate inspiring community leaders at its Women of Distinction & Community Partners Gala on Wednesday, April 19, from 6 to 10 p.m., at Eagle Oaks Golf and Country Club in Farmingdale.

The annual event will raise support to provide leadership experiences to more than 10,000 Girl Scouts across Monmouth and Ocean counties and ensure that every girl finds a place where she belongs and can access year-round Girl Scout programs.

"Girl Scouts of the Jersey Shore is proud to recognize outstanding role models in our community for their strength of character, dedicated community service, emphasis on life-long learning, along with their dedication to fostering self-confidence and leadership skills in others," said Heather Coburn, Chief Executive Officer of Girl Scouts of the Jersey Shore.

Honorees at the 2023 gala include:

Women of Distinction

Women of Distinction honorees embody what it means to be a Girl Scout. They are compassionate, intelligent, and empathetic; they are leaders, and innovators; they are champions in their workplace, families and communities; they lead with courage, confidence, and character.

  • Paige E. Baran, Esquire – Hiering, Dupignac, Stanzione & Dunn, P.C. 
  • Shawanda W. Beale – New Jersey Department of Education 
  • Lauren Holman, CPA – Holman Frenia Allison, P.C. 
  • Manpreet K. Kohli M.D., FACS – RWJBarnabas Health, Monmouth Medical Center 
  • Denise Wegeman MSW, LCSW – D. Wegeman & Associates, LLC

Man Enough to be a Girl Scout

Man Enough to be a Girl Scout honors a man who is committed to helping and encouraging girls and young women as they pursue their passions. This honoree advocates, educates, and inspires girls to be courageous and confident.

  • Thomas A. Arnone – Monmouth County Commissioner Director

Community Partner

Community Partner recipients are partners that support our work and mission to make us stronger. They are committed to improving the lives of others and have a generosity of spirit that is part of the fabric of our organization.

  • Red Arrow Technologies

Full biographies for the honorees can be found at

A committee of volunteers led by co-chairs Tom Hayes and Teri O’Connor are planning this special event that will highlight the badges earned by girls. Hayes serves as director of consumer and community relations at New Jersey Natural Gas and is a recipient of the Man Enough to be a Girl Scout Award. O’Connor, honored as a Woman of Distinction, serves as the Monmouth County administrator. O’Connor, a Girl Scout herself, is the Board Chair for Girl Scouts of the Jersey Shore and the grandmother of a Girl Scout.

The evening will include a cocktail reception, dinner, music, silent auction, and raffle, plus introductions of gala honorees by Girl Scouts. Individual gala tickets are $250.

Tickets, sponsorships and ads for the event journal may be purchased online at For more information about opportunities to support the event, including auction donations, contact Valerie Ryan at or call (800) 785-2090.

When you support these outstanding community leaders, you are demonstrating your belief in the inclusive, all-girl space offered by Girl Scouts that allows girls the freedom to explore their potential and lead the way!