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Rochelle Hendricks, Secretary of Higher Education
Rochelle Hendricks, Secretary of Higher Education

New Jersey's first secretary of higher education, Rochelle Hendricks, has more than 20 years of experience working on education issues in the Garden State.  Appointed to the Cabinet-level post by Governor Chris Christie in May 2011, Secretary Hendricks had served previously as acting commissioner of New Jersey's Department of Education, having been named to that post in August 2010. 

Prior to that assignment, Secretary Hendricks had served in the Department of Education as assistant commissioner for the Division of School Effectiveness and Choice, overseeing key reform initiatives and areas, including the Offices of Board Development, Small Learning Communities and School Culture, District Schools, Turnaround Partnerships, Inter-District Choice and Opportunity Scholarships, Charter Schools, Career and Technical Education, and Online Education. 

Secretary Hendricks had also served in the Department of Education in various other capacities, working as director of the Professional Development Office, manager of the Office of Policy and Planning in the Administration Division, assistant to the deputy education commissioner, director of the Office of Vocational-Technical, Career and Innovative Programs, and director of the Office of Innovative Programs and Schools.  She also managed the Charter School Unit within the Office of Innovative Programs and Schools. 

Prior to joining the staff of the Department of Education, she worked for over 15 years at Princeton University in numerous capacities, including assistant dean of students, director of the Educational Opportunities Program, and interim director of the Women's Program. 

Secretary Hendricks began her career as a teacher in the Rumson Fair Haven Regional High School District before joining the Department of Education in 1987.

Public Members
Joshua E. Hodes, Chair
Joshua E. Hodes, Chair

Joshua Hodes is a Partner at Public Strategies Impact, a government relations, public affairs and association management firm located in Trenton, NJ. Previously, Mr. Hodes served as Chief of Staff to Assembly Majority Leader and as senior staff member of the Assembly Majority Office, advising the Assembly Democratic Caucus on public policy initiatives. Prior to joining the Assembly Majority Office, Mr. Hodes served as an associate in government relations at Public Strategies Impact.

Mr. Hodes is active in local, state and national politics. In 2008, he served as a political advisor to the Hillary Clinton for President Campaign in New Jersey and was a member of the NJ Delegation as a page at the 2008 Democratic National Convention. Mr. Hodes also served on the New Jersey Democratic State Committee's Committee on Vacancies, which was responsible for selecting the New Jersey Electoral College members.

In addition, Mr. Hodes serves as an Advisory Board Member to the New Leaders Council of New Jersey. The mission of the New Leaders Council (NLC) is to train and support the next generation of progressive political entrepreneurs.

Mr. Hodes received his bachelor's degree from Rutgers College and a Master's in Labor and Employment Relations from Rutgers University.

Katherine M. Ungar, Vice Chair
Katherine M. Ungar, Vice Chair

Ms. Ungar is currently the Manager of Business Relations for the Executive Health Program at Atlantic Health System. In addition, she has a distinguished insurance background, serving in past positions that include Senior Underwriter for Chubb Insurance Group, and Second Vice President at General Reinsurance Corp (Berkshire Hathaway Inc). Ms. Ungar attained two professional designations: Chartered Property Casualty Underwriter (CPCU) and the Associate in Reinsurance (ARe).

Ms. Ungar is an active community and civic leader. She served for five years on the Mendham Township Board of Adjustments and was a past member of the Steering Committee on Transparency and Accountability in Government, as well as numerous other non-profit groups. Ms. Ungar was selected, and completed, the Christine Todd Whitman Excellence in Public Services Series.

Ms. Ungar holds a Masters of Business Administration with concentrations in Economics and International Business from the University of Chicago, and a Bachelor of Science in Marketing and Technical Communications from Clarkson University.

Ridgeley Hutchinson
Ridgeley Hutchinson

Ridgeley Hutchinson is Executive Director of the New Jersey Carpenters Apprentice Training and Educational Fund. He joined the Carpenters Union in Princeton in 1978 where he served an apprenticeship.  In 1994 he was elected Business Representative of Carpenters Local 781, Princeton.  In 2002 he was appointed to the executive board of the New Jersey Regional Council of Carpenters where he serves as a trustee.  That same year he was also appointed to serve as a trustee to the New Jersey Carpenters Health and Pension Fund.  In 1996 Mr. Hutchinson was appointed by Governor Whitman to the New Jersey Clean Water Council where he served for 6 years.  He is currently the co-chairman of the Mercer County Chapter of The Alliance for Action.

Louis A. Rodriguez
Louis A. Rodriguez

Louis A. Rodriguez - Appointed to the Authority Board in November 2013, Mr. Rodriguez is a registered Professional Engineer in the State of New York.  He has provided consulting services to electrical utilities throughout the world on projects funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the World Bank, the International Development Bank (IDB), the U.S. Trade Organization and others. He is also a qualified Financial Advisor and has worked in that capacity for Morgan Stanley, Merrill Lynch and Met Life. 

An active civic and community leader, Mr Rodriguez served from 2005 - 2013 on a volunteer basis as Executive Director of the Latino Chamber of Commerce of Monmouth County.  He is currently a Trustee on the Monmouth County Art Council, the community YMCA, Monmouth Medical Center, and The Parker Family Health Center, among others. He also serves as a Member of the CentraState Children Wellness Committee and the Wilbur Ray Scholarship Committee at Brookdale Community College, and is a former Trustee of the Boys Scouts of America Monmouth County and the Family and Children Services organization. 

Mr. Rodriguez has authored numerous technical papers published by the following industry and/or trade magazines: Institute of Electrical Engineers (IEEE), Power Apparatus and Systems Transactions, The Electrical World, Transmission & Distribution-USA., and Transmission & Distribution-International. He is also a coauthor of The Electric Distribution Power Systems Manual developed by Ebasco Services Inc and published by McGraw-Hill for use by electric utilities throughout the world.

He is the recipient of numerous awards and recognitions, including: George Perrot Macculloch Award for Leadership, November 2013; Red Bank Regional High School the Source Outstanding Community Partnership Award, 2011; Monmouth County Prosecutor's Office Certificate of Appreciation, October 2010; Latino American Association of Monmouth County Award for Outstanding Contribution, Dedication and Community Service, October 2006; Certificate of Special Congressional Recognition, Congressman Frank Pallone, October 2006; Tu Sello Latino Market Award for Contributions and dedication to the Community, September 2006; Brookdale Community College Leadership Shore Certificate of Recognition, 2004; and Morgan Stanley Dean Witter Certificate of Achievement Financial Advisor, July 2000.

Mr. Rodriguez holds an Electrical Engineering Bachelor (EEB) degree from the City College of New York.

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