The New Jersey Business & Industry Association announced Wednesday that successful businesswoman and longtime NJBIA board member Celestina S. Quintana has been elected chairwoman of NJBIA’S board of trustees, succeeding Brian F. Neuwirth. In addition, Cliff Lindholm, president & CEO of Falstrom Company, was elected to serve as vice chairman and Lori Roth, co-managing partner at Prager Metis, was elected treasurer.
PSEG executive Richard Thigpen and entrepreneur Jessica Gonzalez also became the newest NJBIA trustees at the association’s annual meeting on Tuesday. They join a board that reflects the diversity of NJBIA’s member companies, which represent a wide variety of business interests and are run by leaders of different genders, generations, races and ethnicities.
“This is a very important time in NJBIA’s 111-year history as we work tirelessly on behalf of New Jersey businesses impacted by the pandemic and strive to deliver new comprehensive business solutions and benefits to our members,” NJBIA President & CEO Michele Siekerka said. “The talent and experience of our new and returning trustees are invaluable to the success of NJBIA’s mission to advance the competitive excellence of our member companies.”
Quintana, who owns and operates 11 McDonald’s restaurants with her daughter, has been an NJBIA board member since 2008. Her predecessor, Neuwirth, is the chairman of UNEX Manufacturing and had served on NJBIA’s board for 17 years. He was chair from 2018-2021.
“We thank Brian for his steadfast leadership during a transformational time for NJBIA and look forward to working with Celestina as she takes the helm of NJBIA’s board, along with Cliff and Lori,” Siekerka said. “We also welcome Jessica and Rick as our newest board members.”
Gonzalez is the founder and CEO of InCharged and Lux Disinfect. In just 10 years, she grew InCharged, which produces branded phone charging stations and other tech equipment for major events, into a fixture in the industry. Gonzalez has partnered with brands such as Google, Coca-Cola and T-Mobile to implement experiential marketing campaigns and events.
When the pandemic hit, Gonzalez pivoted and founded LuxDisinfect, which makes medical-grade sanitizing equipment and the VendX touchless vending machine that users operate with their cell phones. Gonzalez is also a member of the Governor’s Restart and Recovery Commission and is known as an outside-the-box thinker who brings fresh perspectives to business endeavors.
Thigpen is senior vice president for Corporate Citizenship at PSEG and chairman of the PSEG Foundation. He is responsible for areas of the business that drive public policy through advocacy, including federal, state and local government affairs, sustainability, charitable activities and corporate social responsibility.
Previously, Thigpen was an attorney at the New York law firm of Thacher Proffitt and Wood, and has worked as a public affairs consultant, political analyst for New Jersey Network and as an academic associate for PublicMind, Fairleigh Dickinson University Polling and Survey Research Institute. He is the member of several board and foundations, including the New Jersey Pandemic Relief Fund.
At NJBIA’s annual board meeting on Tuesday, three retiring NJBIA board members were honored for their leadership and service: Matthew Wright, president of Piper Holdings LLC; Robert Staudinger, retired president & CEO of National Manufacturing Co. Inc.; and Michael Luzio, founding partner and managing partner of the LVE Group.
For a complete list of all current members of the NJBIA board of trustees, go here.