Board Member Spotlight – Jen Johnson

Get to Know – Jen Johnson


Jen Johnson
Vice President, TRUE Mentors


Favorite quote? I recently read this quote by Mr. Rogers and it seems so fitting for what we do at TM “We live in a world in which we need to share responsibility. It’s easy to say, ‘It’s not my child, not my community, not my world, not my problem.’ Then there are those who see the need and respond. I consider those people my heroes.”  I’m humbled and honored to know the heroes of TRUE Mentors.

Favorite Movie?
There are so many but if I had to pick one I will watch over and over it would be The Sound of Music.

Favorite Book? 
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, it was my favorite book as a child


Why and how did you get involved with TRUE Mentors?

A little over 4 years ago, I was on the board of a small non-profit in Jersey City that was winding down and someone connected me with TM’s founder Susi Milligan to discuss getting involved. I had just started my business as a legal recruiter after being a lawyer for 8 years, and it was the perfect time for me because I finally had the ability to volunteer more of my time and I wanted to volunteer locally for a program focused on children. I joined as TM’s Recruiting Director, and thereafter I joined the Board and have been the Board President for the past 2 years. It has been incredible to see the growth that has occurred and how many more kids we are impacting compared to when I first joined.  I’m excited to see how our Program Director Rebecca Denaro, new Executive Director Katie Eades and new Board President Liam O’Sullivan will continue to build on our successes. I look forward to staying on the Board and recruiting more people to our Board and volunteer core.

Why would you recommend others get involved?

At TM, volunteers build on their own strengths and connect with their community while also positively influencing the children of Hoboken.  We are changing lives, including watching children become the first people in their family to go to college. That is a game changer. How do you not want to be part of that??!!

What are you most excited about at TRUE Mentors?

That more and more residents and businesses of the Hoboken community are reaching out every day to TM and want to get involved.  The more participation we have, the more children we can reach and impact.

What has been your favorite experience thus far, serving on the TRUE Mentors board?

It actually just happened last night. I attended a surprise dinner honoring James Sproule, our prior Executive Director who had been in that role on a volunteer basis for the past 3 years. The table included our 5 Board Members, our 2 paid employees Katie and Becca, James wife Erin (who is also a vital TM volunteer) and a dozen other leaders who volunteer countless hours in our different programs. Some are new, some have been involved since the beginning. We wouldn’t have filled a table like that 4 years ago. It was a great moment to capture.

In 10 words or less, describe the TRUE Mentors experience.

Helping make children’s worlds bigger and their dreams a reality

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