November 30, 2022

CREATIVE CHOICES: “We are set apart by the fact that we are the Princeton University Art Museum Store, and by our focus on regional artists and their handcrafted items. We are also a point of reference for information about the museum.” Allie P. Wolf, left, the store’s manager of wholesale and retail operations, is shown with staff members, from left, Hatice Cam, Michael T. Banks, Regina Massaro, and Stephanie Ronquillo.

By Jean Stratton

Discover art in all its beauty, diversity, and myriad forms at the Princeton University Art Museum Store.

This small shop at 56 Nassau Street is a treasure trove — a cornucopia of gifts. It offers the original creations of regional artists and artisans, as well as art-related gifts of all kinds.

Opened at its current site on Nassau Street and Palmer Square in 2019, it was previously located on campus in the Princeton University Art Museum. Now closed, the museum is being totally rebuilt, with plans to reopen in 2024.

“The focus of the store is on supporting regional artists, featuring their work in glass, ceramic, wood, metal, textiles, and jewelry,” explains Allie P. Wolf, the store’s buyer and manager of wholesale and retail operations. “In addition, we have Princeton University Museum-related items, including museum catalogs and books.”


METROPOLIS MAGIC: “We are always elevating our services for the benefit of our customers. They know they can count on us to offer quality services in a special environment,” says Theresa Carr, owner of Metropolis Salon Spa, who is looking forward to the Metropolis “Sip & Shop” holiday open house on Monday, December 5. Shown is the front area of the salon, and in the background the newly expanded retail section.

By Jean Stratton

Metropolis Spa Salon is a success story!

When so many businesses come and go these days, seemingly in a flash, Metropolis has a special story to tell. Opened in the Princeton Shopping Center in 1993, it has evolved from a small, fledging operation into a flourishing spa and salon, where clients can choose one service or have a total hair and body experience.

Fifty-two employees — including hairstylists, estheticians, massage therapists, and makeup artists — are on hand to ensure each client’s best look and complete satisfaction.

Owner Theresa Carr provides a thorough training program for all the staff as well as a continuing education program with workshops and seminars on the latest techniques and treatments.

“We have continuing training for our staff in all areas,” she points out.


November 23, 2022

To the Editor:

The U.S. Postal Service has been hard at work preparing for the holiday season since January. Rest assured, we’re holiday-ready and well prepared to deliver fast and reliable service to every address in Kingston and across America.

USPS has made significant investments to ensure your holiday greeting cards and packages reach their intended destination on time. We’ve added 249 new package sorting machines across the nation which will allow us to process 60 million packages per day. This new equipment is part of $40 billion in new investments made under Delivering for America, our 10-year plan to achieve financial sustainability and service excellence.

Additionally, we have the space we need to manage all packages and mail when they reach us. We’ve strategically expanded our footprint by 8.5 million square feet throughout the country to augment space shortages at existing postal facilities and we’ve deployed new technology on our workroom floors to make sure we can track and move mail and packages quickly and to get them on their way.

The 650,000 men and women of the U.S. Postal Service pride ourselves on playing an important role in delivering the holidays for the nation. We’ve had more than 100,000 part-time employees convert to full-time positions since January 2021. And there is still time to join our team for the holiday season. Open seasonal positions are posted at

Thank you for continuing to support the Postal Service. Our Kingston Postal Service Team  — Richard, Tari, Skip, and John — wish you a wonderful holiday season.

Richard Micallef
Route 27, Kingston

To the Editor:

I’m humbled by the support and warmth of so many neighbors across the community who shared my concerns. Even though I didn’t win, I stood up for educational principles widely shared by thousands of Princeton taxpayers, and I was able to raise public awareness about Princeton Public Schools’ declining math proficiency scores, falling national rankings, and our disappointing performance across multiple equity indicators. My platform resonated with 3,485 voters (count as of November 21) who are unhappy with the status quo, placing me just 4 percentage points behind an incumbent. I hope this in itself sends a strong message to all members of the School Board — to whom I wish nothing but the best. 

The Board of Education and PPS leadership have a tough road ahead. This school year’s theme is Healing, Helping, and Hope. I welcome the opportunity to learn more specifics about how those ideals translate into improving Princeton High School (PHS) math scores (51 percent math proficiency at PHS); lower chronic absenteeism rates (47 percent of Black or African American and Hispanic or Latino American students are chronically absent from PHS, 58 percent of English language learners, and 63 percent of low-income students); and improve graduation rates for English learners, which dropped to 67 percent in 2020-21 from 88 percent in 2019-20. Furthermore, according to the consulting company hired by PPS, less than 20 percent of Latino PHS students feel that they belong, and less than 25 percent felt comfortable being themselves at school or that there was at least one adult who cared about them. 

As PPS leadership stated in last week’s letter to parents, every student deserves opportunities to be seen and to succeed. I couldn’t agree more. How will we get there? Our students deserve to see an action plan and a stakeholder communication plan. The current version of the district strategic plan does not address these areas of concern. How will we lift everyone up, as promised in the letter?

Dear parents and caring community members: I hoped to lead the way on the School Board to demand district transparency and leadership accountability that taxpayers and PPS students deserve. The thousands of votes I received prove there are many of you out there that want this too. It’s now up to everyone that cares to work together, speak up at meetings, and demand more.

Rita Rafalovsky
Library Place

To the Editor:

This Thanksgiving week, Princeton’s dog owners and the Princeton Dog Park Alliance want to offer their (belated) thanks to the Princeton Council. Last month, the Council unanimously passed an ordinance to establish future dog parks, launch a pilot off-leash program in Quarry Park, and plan for a temporary dog park in Community Park South.

We want to thank Councilwoman Michelle Pirone Lambros and Council President Leticia Fraga, who had productive discussions with the Alliance. And we especially want to single out Councilwoman Mia Sacks for her leadership in bringing the ordinance to fruition. In addition to offering our applause and thanks, the Alliance stands ready to work hand-in-hand with the municipality on these dog-friendly endeavors. Dog parks are great for dogs and great for their owners. They help build community, which is another thing for which we can be thankful — all throughout the year.

Calvin Chin
Spruce Street

Leanne Hunter
Wiggins Street

Roger Shatzkin
Chestnut Street

The writers are members of the Princeton Dog Park Alliance’s Board of Trustees.

To the Editor:

Housing Initiatives of Princeton (HIP) held its annual Rent Party on Saturday, November 5 when our sold-out crowd of over 175 people gathered on a gorgeous night at the beautiful Updike Farmstead to help us “raise the rent” to assist low-income working families in our community. Through the generosity of our supporters — including the more than 80 event sponsors — HIP raised more than $90,000 which we will use to provide transitional housing with family-focused supportive services and emergency rental assistance to help individuals and families experiencing housing insecurity build toward a sustainable future. To learn more about what we do, please visit our website at

We want to thank the amazing Rent Party Committee — Carol Golden, Kathleen Gittleman, Sue Cameron, Tamera Matteo, Lydia Pfeiffer, Tina Motto, and Wendy Kaczerski — who worked tirelessly to make the event so welcoming and fun! We were also so fortunate to work with Leanne Hunter of Updike, Emily’s Catering, and the fabulous Steve Johnson Band. Some of HIP’s staunchest supporters donated their services: Anne Fahey provided the beautiful invitations; Jammin’ Crepes, the delicious dessert; Kathy Klockenbrink, table decorations; and Emily Reeves, her photography.

We at HIP are so grateful to our whole community, which truly came together — neighbor helping neighbor — to ensure our community remains diverse and vibrant!

Liz Lempert
Chair, Housing Initiatives of Princeton
Mercer Street

To the Editor:

I write in support of turning the Dinky rail line into a vibrant transit corridor, with bike and pedestrian access, and a new dedicated bus route that extends well into downtown Princeton.

NJ Transit deserves credit for reviewing the corridor, seeking public input, and suggesting these very upgrades. Now, with so much competition for infrastructure funds, we need the support of elected officials — particularly at the state and federal levels — to make it happen.

There is already enthusiasm on the ground. Our group, the Friends of the Dinky Corridor, recently launched a petition that has garnered signatures from folks around the Princeton area. You can read more about the effort here:

As a resident of Princeton and a high school teacher in West Windsor, the existing Dinky line strikes me as a missed opportunity. My students have no safe way of walking or biking to Nassau Street, just a few miles from their homes.

It’s a missed opportunity for Princeton’s business district as well. Consider this: 800 units of housing are currently under construction as part of the “W Squared” development at Princeton Junction.

Those new residents will take one look at clogged Route 1 feeders like Washington Road and decamp to restaurants on their own side of the highway — and no amount of al fresco charm and artisanal ice cream is going to change their minds. more

November 16, 2022

COMPASSIONATE CARE: “I want to emphasize the role of volunteers as part of our overall mission. EASEL relies on volunteers for some of our crucial operations. Adoptions, intake, training, off-site events, follow-up calls, and fostering are all primarily run by volunteers. The relationship between our staff and volunteers has been instrumental in the success of EASEL.” Mark Phillips, EASEL Animal Rescue League’s director of animal services, is shown with Pinky, a longtime shelter dog with some medical issues, and, from left, Director of Operations Lori Cima and Assistant Manager Andrea Dunks.

By Jean Stratton

EASEL — Ewing Animal Shelter Extension League — has a mission. It is to help stray, abandoned, transferred, and surrendered dogs and cats to find a happy home, and in the interim, to provide them with a caring, healthy, and safe environment.

Founded in 2008, and established in its current location at 4 Jake Garzio Drive in Ewing in 2013, it is a no-kill shelter. As a nonprofit volunteer animal welfare organization, it is dedicated to ending the euthanasia of unwanted animals in Mercer County through collaborative coalitions and community alliances.

“We are the only shelter in Ewing,” points out Mark Phillips, director of animal services. “We are both a place to take animals and a place to get animals. Currently, we have 40 cats and 13 dogs in the shelter. We also have 20 cats (mostly kittens) in foster care.”

The animals are brought to the shelter by animal control officers. They may have been found abandoned, or people have reported seeing a stray. They can also be transferred from other shelters. At times, owners may be forced to surrender a pet for a variety of reasons, reports Phillips. more

To the Editor:

Barbara Herzberg, a brilliant, exuberant teacher and friend to many in the Princeton Community and beyond, died on October 24, 2022. 

Town Topics profiled Barbara several years ago in an article entitled “Princeton Resident Barbara Herzberg Shares Love of Theater and Teaching” (see

Another Town Topics article noted Barbara’s role as a founder and mainstay in Evergreen Forum — “From Islam to Wordsworth to ‘Genesis’: Evergreen Forum Celebrates 10 Years” (see

Looking forward to more about Barbara.

Ellen Gilbert
Stuart Road East

To the Editor:

I read with profound sadness the obituary of Dr. James Litton in last week’s Town Topics [November 9, page 41]. In 1997, my 9-year-old son, Ben Donati, was brave enough to audition for The American Boychoir School and lucky enough to be chosen to sing under the guidance of Jim Litton. For the next four years, until he graduated, Ben learned fine musicianship and an accompanying stage presence which enabled him, together with his ABS friends, to perform both locally and throughout the country.

Jim taught Ben patience, good manners, and a love for music that continues to define Ben as an adult. As a parent who entrusted my young son to Jim Litton during those years, I was grateful back then for Jim’s sensitivity, humor, and graciousness, and I am grateful to Jim now, as I realize how his lessons have stayed with Ben all these years later.

Dana Liebmann
Pelham Street

To the Editor:

Veterans Day, November 11, 2022 was a momentous day in Princeton occasioned by two wonderful and important commemorations: the annual Veterans Day Service that is jointly sponsored by Princeton University and the town’s Spirit of Princeton organization, and the Centennial Charter Celebration of American Legion Post 218–Charles W. Robinson. 

The service at the University was inspirational with a keynote address by the Reverend Dr. Deborah Blanks, pastor of Princeton’s Mount Pisgah AME Church, followed by a swearing in of nearly 100 ROTC Army, Navy, and Air Force cadets on the steps of the University Chapel. I was filled with hope that the founding values and principles of our country and indeed democracy itself “shall not perish from the earth.” 

The inspiration and hope I felt continued at noon with the Centennial Charter Celebration of the American Legion Post 218, named for Charles W. Robinson, an African American son of Princeton who enlisted and served in the Navy in the First World War and was killed when his ship was torpedoed. The Post received its charter on November 15, 1922 and has served hundreds of veterans and this community for 100 years. The values and principles of its charter and constitution continue to inspire its members and friends to rebuild, renew, and reclaim its legacy through the Operation Phoenix initiative.

I want to thank all who were involved in both of these events and who helped make Veterans Day in Princeton an extraordinary day of remembrance, celebration, and commitment.

Hendricks S. Davis
Project Manager, Operation Phoenix
John Street 

November 9, 2022

To the Editor:
When Princeton First Aid & Rescue Squad (PFARS) was founded in 1939, the organization’s 40 volunteer members operated out of a station wagon stocked with first aid supplies donated by Johnson & Johnson.

Today, the nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization has grown to around 60 volunteers working side-by-side with eight career Emergency Medical Technicians and a full-time chief from its new facilities on Mount Lucas Road. The current fleet of apparatus includes modular ambulances, a technical rescue truck, two four-wheel drive utility vehicles, and Rescue One jet drive marine unit.

We take great pride in maintaining top standards of care to Princeton residents and visitors, as well as neighboring communities. PFARS responded to more than 2,500 calls in 2021 including nearly 200 mutual aid calls to the surrounding municipalities of Montgomery, Rocky Hill, West Windsor, Lawrenceville, and South Brunswick.

This can only be possible with a strong volunteer base.

And so, we’ve launched a full-scale volunteer recruiting effort, seeking candidates to join our 2023 training programs and apply to become volunteer members. Applications are currently being accepted for spring, summer, and fall 2023 on-boarding programs. Interested candidates are invited to attend a virtual information session on Monday, November 21 at 6 p.m.

Many residents don’t realize that PFARS is independent of the Municipality of Princeton and not supported by taxpayers. Funding for our operations depends on contributions made by individuals, corporations, and foundations to fulfill our mission to save lives, relieve the suffering of the sick and injured, and promote safety.

When I joined the squad in 2007, I saw it as an opportunity to have a part-time job doing something that I enjoyed while completing my college degree. I fell in love with the career, and soon became full time, and have been here ever since. For many of us, the big draw is the close personal friendships we’re able to cultivate within the organization. I also enjoy being able to get out and give back to this community, having meaningful daily interactions with people that may just need a comforting conversation when they are having potentially their worst day.

Find out if volunteering as an EMT and being able to help others in a critical time of need is right for you. Join us for the virtual information session later this month, hear from former recruits, and learn about our streamlined 2023 training program. An application and details for the virtual session can be found at

Chief, Princeton First Aid & Rescue Squad
Mount Lucas Road

To the Editor:
After reading a long front page article in Town Topics about how a roundabout is different from a traffic circle [“Navigating Roundabout on Rosedale Road Has Caused Some Confusion,” November 2], I would like to say your journalist is missing the point, speaking as a rider who narrowly escaped being in a fatal accident because someone did NOT see the roundabout. Normally intelligent Princetonians do not need to learn how to navigate a roundabout, they need to see it in time to drive appropriately.

On October 16, I was given a ride home from town to Brookstone Drive by a former Princeton resident in his small sports car. We rounded the circle as proscribed and were barely missed by a car careening over the center of the roundabout. You are lucky you are not getting this letter from my descendants.

Jim Purcell may drive twice a day down Rosedale Road  and “not see any problems,”  but he was not there that day. Regardless of the signs on the side of the road indicating a roundabout ahead, people are coming downhill rarely at 25 or 35 miles an hour, and there is simply a flat white circle ahead. There has to be something that makes that circle visible before you get to it — a circle of lights, plantings, flashing lights — I am sure the engineers can come up with something other than road signs or a blinding overhead light seen when you are almost there. I cannot even imagine what will happen in winter or snow. All my friends say this is a disaster waiting to happen.

When Mr. Xu was killed while crossing on a pedestrian walkway, the county took action. They need to take action now to prevent another tragic accident.

Brookstone Drive

To the Editor:
Anne Levin’s article, “Navigating Roundabout on Rosedale Road Has Caused Some Confusion,” prompts me, as someone who drives or bikes along Rosedale almost every day, to write this letter. While I’m tempted to say that I’m “confused,” I’m actually “concerned.” So here, in the form of questions, are three concerns.

1. How long will the roundabout be grossly over illuminated at night? So preternaturally bright has that slice of road become that, the first time I encountered it, I said to myself: “Looks like Ron Howard and his film crew are back in town to shoot a major nighttime scene.”

2. Is there any way to keep the path for walkers and cyclists that hugs Rosedale between Elm and Province Line roads reasonably clear of fallen branches? I often see people riding bikes on Rosedale Road; I rarely see people riding bikes on the bike path. Hazardous debris must be one reason.

3. Speaking of fallen branches, what should be done to protect walkers, cyclists, and even motorists from tree limbs coming down? Along Rosedale, as throughout the Princeton region, many trees are sick and dying (most prominently and sadly, monumental ash trees). I know from experience that cutting down big trees costs big bucks. I also know from experience that getting hit by a falling branch costs a lot.

Province Line Road

To the Editor:
A new phase of growth is upon us, which has prompted me to set this year’s theme as “Healing, Helping and Hope.” We will go further by leaning on each other, and we’ve been doing just that. From our students creating inspirational notes on their school bulletin boards to encourage their learning communities, educators working collaboratively for innovative teaching strategies, and even our adoption of an emotional support dog (Hi, Tiger!) to help our elementary students and staff destress, Princeton Public Schools is helping our fellow Princetonians heal after an unprecedented three years.

Our interconnectedness is due, in part, to our leadership through the Board of Education which works collaboratively to support all our students and what makes them unique. More than tolerance is acceptance and nurturing differences and experiences to ensure students feel a sense of belonging to thrive. Every student deserves opportunities to be seen and to succeed.

The strategic planning process has been enlightening as we determine our guiding principles and soon, equity-centered strategies to address our district’s vision and stakeholders’ concerns from staff, families, and students.

I continue to share our primary overall goal, which is to always add to opportunities and pathways for students to be fulfilled and advance, if they choose, especially if barriers are present, but never to eliminate them. Princeton has long been a place where all are able to thrive, and this will continue as we lift everyone up where needed.

We’re excited to share the final strategic plan by year-end, but we are careful to take the necessary time to ensure all feedback is considered. Our children are depending on us for meaningful results, and that remains the center of our work.

Superintendent, Princeton Public Schools
Valley Road

FINE WINES: “While our focus is on fine wines from smaller vineyards, we also offer craft beer, mostly from New Jersey, and spirits from small distilleries, along with some well-known brands. We will have a special bourbon tasting event this month. Quality is key here, and with our friendly atmosphere, it is a welcoming place. Our location in the Pennington Shopping Center is excellent, with convenient parking and accessibility.” Delroy Williams, owner of the Princeton Wine Company, looks forward to introducing more customers to his exceptional selection and inviting setting.

By Jean Stratton

The Princeton Wine Company is unique. Not only can customers buy wine, beer, and spirits to take home, they can also enjoy a glass of a special curated wine in the charming and intimate Wine Bar.

Located in the Pennington Shopping Center at 25 Route 31 South, it is the new venture of Delroy Williams. After 11 years as director of food and beverages at The Nassau Club, he opened his new business in July 2022.

“I very much enjoyed my time at The Nassau Club, and I made many good friends there,” he says. “I enjoyed its conviviality and warm atmosphere.”

Wanting to spend more time with his young family, he decided to establish his own business, affording him more flexible hours. When the Pennington location became available, it was an ideal opportunity for him. With his experience and special knowledge of wine, opening the Princeton Wine Company was a dream come true.


November 2, 2022

KITCHEN CABINETS: “We are set apart by the quality of our work and our excellent staff. People feel as if they’ve hired a family. There is a high comfort level, and customers often comment on how personable our staff is, and, of course, on the excellent quality of their work.” Kevin Casey, left, founder and owner of Cabinet Painting Guru, is shown with Adam Elsayed, Jarod Chamberlain, and Max Ronollo, three of his five colleagues, in a recently completed kitchen.

By Jean Stratton

The kitchen is the heart of the home, and no matter how large or small, it is so often the favorite gathering place, not only for family, but also for friends and neighbors.

Having it function efficiently for the cook is the major priority, but eye appeal adds so much to the overall comfort level, especially considering the many hours spent within its confines.

Kevin Casey, founder and owner of Cabinet Painting Guru, headquartered in Pennington, wants to help you make your kitchen even better.

Painting kitchen cabinets is his company’s specialty, and he and his staff can create an entire new look with the application of fine quality paint. more

To the Editor: 

As a PPS parent, I would like to express my support for Margarita “Rita” Rafalovsky as a candidate for the Board of Education. Like many families, our family chose to live in Princeton for its excellent schools and its diverse and inclusive culture. We have had a good experience with the public schools until last May when we learned about the school district’s plan for a math curriculum change. The suggestion of removing advanced math courses from an external consultant hired by the school district, as well as the district’s reluctance to release the consultant’s full report to parents, made us concerned about the district’s direction. 

Today’s world is seeing rapid technology development. Our children will face new sets of challenges and likely take on new kinds of jobs. High-quality public education is vital in preparing our children for the workforce of the future and for a fulfilling life. Princeton’s reputation of school excellence has been built upon the hard work and dedication of students, teachers, and families over the years. It’s important for Board members not to rest on the district’s past success, and not to lose focus on academic excellence for all of our children when balancing difference goals.

Rita sees this and understands it. She has a forward-thinking mindset when it comes to education for our children. She focuses on the work and not the talk; the real results instead of wishful thinking. Thanks to her years of corporate experience, she is keen in identifying problem areas and proactively searching for community resources and effective solutions with measurable outcomes. Rita thinks that education is the greatest equalizer, to which I cannot agree more. She came to this country at a young age, grew up in a poor neighborhood, and struggled academically and financially before getting herself into college and landing a successful career. She understood the types of school and community programs that would help children like her, and she has the will to help future generations reach their potential. Our school district will benefit greatly by having Rita on the School Board. 

Julie Zhu
Bertrand Drive

To the Editor:

Princeton prides itself as being forward-thinking with a strong sense of community. A town like Princeton should be expected to encourage and protect transportation diversity, but it consistently fails at the latter. Bicycle and (the growing number of) scooter riders have little protection on our major thoroughfares. Our busy cross streets, like Witherspoon, Hamilton-Wiggins, Nassau, and Harrison, along with several narrow residential streets, accommodate riders only by painting BLVD on the streets.

Most local riders are students and young families. With the volume and speed of auto traffic on these roads, it is natural that riders avoid the risk and turn to sidewalks, few of which are designated for use by bicycles, and I can only assume this extends to scooters. Allowing bicycles and scooters on busy, often narrow sidewalks poses serious risks for pedestrians. Forcing them to busy streets without designated bike lanes poses serious risks for the riders. 

Nassau Street is a special case. For many years there were signs, albeit small ones, explicitly barring riders from the sidewalks, at least on the business side of the street. Princeton appears not to invest in safety officers to enforce “downtown” rules, so even on busy weekends, adherence to this ban has been spotty. Especially with the rapid growth in motorized scooters on campus, sidewalk competition between riders and pedestrians is now common throughout the downtown.  It is now rare to walk Nassau Street and not witness bicycles and scooters weaving in and out of groups of pedestrians. more

To the Editor:

We would like to respond to Mr. Kerachsky’s letter to share both the challenges and some of the measures we are taking to improve safety for diverse roadway users in Princeton.

The municipality has had in place a Complete Streets policy since at least 2013, establishing the principle that all roadways must be designed to consider and accommodate the needs of all users. After several abortive attempts to install bicycle facilities during a few roadway redesigns in the following years, in 2016, we hired an engineering consultant to develop specific recommendations for an entire network of bike facilities, so the entire community could see the rationale behind when and where specific types of facilities should be provided — bike lanes, shared side paths, bike boulevards, and other share-the-road signage. These were incorporated into the Community Master Plan in 2017. Subsequently we commissioned an in-depth study of the Robeson-Wiggins-Hamilton corridor to assess the practical aspects of how to achieve a truly viable design solution. Other detailed studies are planned for other major corridors in the coming years, such as Harrison Street, Washington Road, and Nassau Street.

While the current Master Plan calls for improvements to be made on each road as they come up for reconstruction during the regular cycle of roadway maintenance, and as funding becomes available, Council has recognized that dangerous locations should receive priority, and has adopted a commitment to Vision Zero, which focuses on elimination of deaths and serious injuries on our roads through data-based decision making. The Vision Zero Task Force is working on recommendations not only for Complete Streets design changes to our road system, but also policies concerning micro-mobility, street lighting, traffic signal timing, and speed limit adjustments to further these safety goals. It is anticipated that many of these recommendations will make their way into the Master Plan, which is currently undergoing a long-awaited overhaul, and ultimately into our municipal code. more

To the Editor:

Three Board of Education (BOE) positions will be elected from five candidates (Rita Rafalovsky, Lisa Wu, Susan Kanter, Debbie Bronfeld, and Dafna Kendal) on November 8. The BOE election is particularly important for the Princeton community not only because half of our property tax goes to PPS, but also because the BOE is critical in setting the strategy and path for how our children are educated for their futures.

The quality of the public schools is a very important component of qualify of life living in Princeton. Our family moved to Princeton just across a street from Montgomery 15 years ago, and the decision was mainly driven by the quality and reputation of PPS at that time. As our kid grew up and went through PPS, we observed obvious (sometimes concerning) changes in the school district. Because of these growing concerns shared with many families, we have paid a lot attention to the BOE election and attended a couple BOE candidate forums including the first Princeton Asian American Forum meeting with these five candidates. 

Carefully listening to all candidates’ plans for PPS and answers to audience questions, we decided to support Rita and Lisa for the following reasons: First, Rita and Lisa share the same concern that the PPS national ranking dropped from No. 94 in 2009 to  No. 490 in 2022 (U.S. News) and they want to improve PPS ranking as one of their BOE goals. Second, both Rita and Lisa emphasize that PPS needs to make study interesting and attractive to students and make them enjoy learning without lowering the quality and rigor. Third, both Rita and Lisa want to increase and improve the transparency and prompt communications between PPS administration and student families in areas such as education material content (e.g. sex education materials, etc.), teachers’ teaching quality evaluation, and plans to recruit/retain high performance teachers.

Finally, voting is a precious right and privilege in this great country. All of us should go and vote for the community and for ourselves.

Wei Wu
Ying Zeng
Maidenhead Road

To the Editor:

The board of the nonprofit Bryn Mawr-Wellesley Book Sale extends its warm thanks to the Princeton Shopping Center for making space available for its October 15 pop-up children’s book sale.

With hundreds of titles for toddlers to teens, parents and teachers found a large selection of like-new books to choose from, most priced around $2.

Our partnership with the shopping center and its owner, Edens, benefits those buying books as well as the scholarship students for whom we raise funds. Thank you!

Kathyrn Morris
President, Bryn Mawr-Wellesley Book Sale
Witherspoon Street

To the Editor:

The School Board election is only one week away. When we choose our representatives to lead our school district, we should think about shipping containers. Let me explain.

Since its invention in the mid-20th century, standardized shipping containers probably have done more than anything in shaping the economic and political landscape of the world today. The era of globalization ushered in by the container shipping industry also relentlessly exposed the weakness of the K-12 education in the U.S. For a long time, the majority of the high school graduates received enough education to work in a factory and earn a wage that could support a family. However, when a pair of sneakers could be shipped in a container from China to the U.S. for less than 25 cents, workers in the U.S. were no longer protected by geography. For many of these workers who lost out in the global labor force competition, the education they received didn’t prepare them well enough to acquire new marketable skills and regain full participation in society. That was the mistake our public education must not repeat.

Parents, educators, and policymakers should expect that students today will encounter their generation’s “shipping container” in their lifetimes. Is it artificial intelligence? Will college-educated white-collar professionals be at risk? We won’t know for sure. But the only way to better prepare our students for the inevitable technology disruptions is to help them build a solid foundation of knowledge and become lifelong learners. more

To the Editor:

I am writing to support Dafna Kendal’s candidacy for re-election to the Board of Education. One of my children is a junior at Princeton High School and the other is a freshman in college; both were Princeton Public Schools students since kindergarten. I have known Dafna for more than 11 years, and throughout her Board terms I have been continually impressed by Dafna’s incredible work ethic (she is a lawyer in her day job), her profound appreciation for our hard-working teachers, and her deep commitment to providing a first-rate public education to all of Princeton’s children.

Dafna’s achievements during her six years on the Board have significantly and positively impacted our community, including measures to improve Board transparency, to a strong and consistent focus on student achievement across all groups, and to diversifying revenue streams for the district which has saved taxpayers millions of dollars in the process.

As a family physician, I would like to focus in particular on Dafna’s achievements with regard to students’ physical and mental health. I have been in touch with Dafna over the past three years, and I have seen firsthand the amazing amount of effort she has put into keeping our students safe and physically in the classroom as much as possible throughout the pandemic. Dafna connected with health experts, worked with local institutions of higher learning, spoke with colleagues throughout the state, and stayed in constant contact with our administration and our teachers. Dafna’s clear focus on the well-being of our school population, together with her tireless efforts on their behalf, was crucial in the district’s efforts to get our children and teachers back in the classroom as quickly and as safely as possible.  more

To the Editor:

The board of the Princeton Mobile Food Pantry would like to thank everyone who joined us on October 6 at our Oktoberfest fundraiser. Held in the beautiful Present Day Club and entertained by Musicworksnyc Arts and DJ James Myricks, our guests enjoyed German food, beer, and wine while supporting our Princeton neighbors. 

Princeton Mobile Food Pantry (PMFP) is a 501(c)3 organization that provides food and other support to the under-resourced members of the Princeton community. Our focus is to support families with children in the Princeton Public Schools. PMFP currently serves over 200 families by providing fresh food deliveries twice per month.

Many thanks to Baxter Construction and the Snack Family Giving Fund, our gold sponsors, along with all of our other sponsors and partners for their support of this event and our mission. This amazing group of volunteers, donors, and partners continue to help PMFP to grow our support network.

To learn more about the Princeton Mobile Food Pantry please visit

The Board of the Princeton Mobile Food Pantry
Newlin Road