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Sep 14, 2021

Jon Stewart To Host Lunch Break’s 2021 Annual Fall Gala  

Lunch Break is proud to announce that Jon Stewart, host of the upcoming Apple TV+ series, “The Problem with Jon Stewart,” will be the guest host for the annual gala. This year’s event, “We Rise Together: Restoring and Rebuilding Lives,” will be held Friday, Oct. 15 at the Count Basie Center for the Arts in Red Bank. This year’s honorees include Carol Stillwell, president and CEO of Stillwell-Hansen, Inc.; former Lunch Break Board President John Klein and his wife, Robin; and Abe and Linda Littenberg, of Guttenplan’s Frozen Dough and A Child’s Place School in Lincroft.

“We are thrilled to have Jon Stewart as our host and are excited to have the Count Basie Center for the Arts as our venue. I couldn’t be more proud of our honorees, who exemplify Lunch Break’s mission in their lives and work every day,” said Executive Director Gwendolyn Love.  

The evening, which takes place from 6:30 to 11 pm will feature dinner, dancing, entertainment, raffles and an auction of premium items. 

Stillwell had led a life and career filled with tireless devotion to critical social and healthcare causes. Beginning as a secretary in the air conditioning company founded by her late husband, Gordon, in the 1960s in the family’s converted garage, Stillwell became president and CEO of Stillwell-Hansen in the 90s. She helped transform a once-humble small business into a multi-faceted enterprise that provides New Jersey manufacturing clients with data services, tech, hardware and safety training. 

Carol Stillwell

She has become an acclaimed philanthropist for a wide array of causes including 180 Turning Lives Around, the American Cancer Society, CASA of Monmouth County, Family Promise, Fulfill, Monmouth County SPCA, Hometown Heroes, key charitable foundations of major local hospitals and colleges, and of course, Lunch Break. 

From left: John Klein, Robin Klein, Linda Littenberg and Abe Littenberg

John and Robin Klein, of Middletown, began supporting Lunch Break as newcomers to the Red Bank area. John, a real estate developer, joined the Board of Trustees in 2014 and served as Board President from 2017 to 2020. He now serves on the Advisory Council. Robin, founder and president of Fashion Retail Group, a boutique real estate firm, joined the board in 2020; she and John also are co-chairs of the Capital Campaign.  

The Kleins are also founding board members of Parents with a Plan, a foundation working to create solutions for the growing housing and services shortage for neurodiverse adults. Robin also serves on the Executive Board of Trustees for the Count Basie Center for the Arts and the Riverview Medical Center Foundation Board. 

They additionally support the Ubumwe Community Center and School in Rwanda. They share a passion for protecting and rescuing animals, especially those on the brink of extinction, as well as for the welfare of imperiled domestic animals.

Abe and Linda Littenberg are stalwart Lunch Break volunteers, delivering meals to people in need every week. 

Abe joined the family business and with his cousin, and soon transformed the Long Branch bakery into a booming frozen dough supplier that serves restaurants, supermarkets and small bakeries nationwide. 

Linda, a high school teacher, bought A Child’s Place School with her husband when school founder Alba DiBello retired. The school is devoted to nourishing young imaginations on the concept that children are born curious. The two have been Lunch Break volunteers and donors for more than two decades. Abe served on the Advisory Council and Capital Campaign Construction Committee and Linda as a member of the Development Committee.  

For everyone’s safety, attendees must to provide proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test 48 hours prior to the event. Proof of vaccination or test results should be emailed to ckilbourne@lunchbreak.org. Tickets are $400 per person. Proceeds will benefit Lunch Break’s mission of providing food security and social services, clothing, fellowship and life skills to those struggling with financial burdens in Monmouth County and beyond.

For more information, contact Development Manager Jill Govel-Gwydir at 732-747-8577, ext. 3107 or email jgwydir@lunchbreak.org. 

S49ALL (1): Carol Stillwell

S49ALL (2): From left: John Klein, Robin Klein, Linda Littenberg and Abe Littenberg