Public Info

Enjoy the Awards Ceremony & Art Exhibit by Union County Employees, May 4

The Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders will recognize local artists and present awards at a reception on Wednesday, May 4, at the 15th Annual Exhibit and Contest for County of Union Employees and Their Families. The free reception and awards ceremony will begin at 5:30 p.m. at the Elizabethtown Gas Company, located in the Liberty Hall Center, 1085 Morris Avenue in Union.

“This show offers a chance for our Union County employees, retired employees, County programs volunteers, and family members to shine,” said Freeholder Bette Jane Kowalski, liaison to the Union County Cultural and Heritage Programs Advisory Board. “The artwork that they do in their spare time is outstanding, and we are proud to display it in the beautiful atrium space of the Liberty Hall Center. We are grateful to Elizabethtown Gas for generously hosting the program and awards reception and to the National Arts Program Foundation for funding the prize awards.”

Presented in partnership with the National Arts Program®, the exhibit will be open weekdays until May 24, from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.

“The Freeholders share the goal of the National Arts Program Foundation to reach as many people as possible of all ages, offering them a chance to show their creations,” said Freeholder Chairman Bruce H. Bergen. “We invite you to view this exhibit of exceptional artwork at the Liberty Hall Center.”

The art exhibit will be judged by three prominent artists/art professionals: Marguerite Brennan, Lawrence Cappiello and Frank Falotico.

Marguerite Brennan graduated in 1980 with a BFA from Philadelphia College of Art. Her studies in ceramics continued in Mexico at the Instituto de Allende, in San Miguel de Allende and Otis Institute of Parsons School of Design, Los Angeles, California. Her clay-making passion encompasses arenas of design in both functional and sculptural work distinguished by her trademark of naïve animal imagery. The functional work is hand built, not thrown on the wheel. She maintains her studio at her home in Summit, NJ, where she also gives clay lessons to the young and young-at-heart. She has exhibited extensively in the U.S. and Canada, and she has won numerous ceramic awards. Her work is in the private collections of Nicolas Cage, Bette Midler, Lorraine Bracco, Francis Ford Coppola, Aidan Quinn and David Strathairn.

Lawrence Cappiello is a founder of Arts Guild New Jersey (formerly the Arts Guild of Rahway), a non-profit center for the Arts in Rahway, NJ, and he has served as Executive Director of the organization since 1998. Mr. Cappiello was an Art major at Colby College, Waterville, Maine (1974) and holds an MA degree in Studio Art and Art Education from Kean University (1998). He has been making pictures since the age of three and has several years of other formal training in Art at The Art Students League in New York City and various other institutions in New Jersey and New York.

Frank Falotico is the Director of the duCret School of Art in Plainfield. Mr. Falotico has a B.A. in Fine Art from Monmouth College, is a graduate of the duCret School of Art and studied at the Art Students League in New York. He has exhibited his paintings in numerous shows in New Jersey and New York including the Swain Galleries in Plainfield, the Visual Arts Center of New Jersey, Rutgers University, and the Salmagundi Club in New York City.

The National Arts Program® is in its 31st year with 86 annual programs in 38 states. The program was conceived by Leonard E.B. Andrews (1925 – 2009), an art collector, publisher, business executive and journalist, “for the encouragement and development of artistic expression.” The goal of the National Arts Program® is to provide an uninhibited opportunity for people to present their talent, at whatever level, in a free, public exhibition. The National Arts Program® is sponsored by The National Arts Program Foundation of Malvern, Pennsylvania. To learn more about the program, visit

Additional support for this event is provided by the New Jersey State Council on the Arts, Department of State, a partner agency of the National Endowment for the Arts.

For more information, contact the Union County Office of Cultural and Heritage Affairs, 633 Pearl Street, Elizabeth NJ 07202. Telephone (908) 558-2550 or e-mail: NJ relay users dial 711.