the junction where the arts and community meet

Jennifer and Hetal during the gala 2016

For a nonprofit organization one of the most valuable resources are volunteers.

The West Windsor Arts Council is lucky to have the assistance of many giving individuals and each year makes sure they know how much they are appreciated by participating in national volunteer appreciation week, this year on April 23 -29. In addition to saying thank you to the nearly 100 volunteers who provide their time and energy doing everything from helping at events to serving on the board, the West Windsor Arts Council also awards annual Volunteer of the Year awards to a volunteer(s) who went above and beyond in service to the organization.

This year, Hetal Mistry and Jennifer Connaughton, both of West Windsor NJ, have been given the Volunteers of the Year award for their exemplary service in support of the arts. “We are so grateful to them for lending us their talent and effort, for their warmth and enthusiasm, and for all they continue to do for the arts in our community,” said Aylin Green, Executive Director.

Jennifer and Hetal were instrumental in the success of the annual gala fundraiser by exceeding all expectations in turning the art center into an artistic jazzy nightclub for the theme of a Speakeasy Soirée. The fundraiser raised over $17,000 in support of the arts and education programs for youth and adults offered by the arts center.

Jennifer is a fashion designer who has been leading the dynamic decorations team for the last three years. She is able to not only make every detail pop, but to stay in budget with an eye towards creative reuse of materials. She galvanizes other volunteers to get involved and donates many hours in advance of the event to ensure a spectacular result.

Hetal is an artist who volunteers on the exhibition committee and on the decor team along with Jennifer. Her hard work and prowess with a brush is well known to all as she paints beautiful backdrops and signage for the event. Hetal is also the committee lead for the upcoming Dharma in the 21st Century exhibition, which will be on view at the arts center May 8 – June 23. This exhibition will also support the Clean Ganga Fund. Hetal has done a wonderful job curating the exhibition, preparing marketing materials, and seeking sponsors to support the effort.

The West Windsor Arts Council welcomes members of the community to get involved by becoming a volunteer.