Best-selling New York Times author Jeff Hobbs will keynote Conservancy’s bi-annual City Bloom Luncheon

Jeff Hobbs, author of “The Short and Tragic Life of Robert Peace,” will be the keynote speaker at Greater Newark Conservancy’s bi-annual City Bloom Luncheon on Thursday, May 11, 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., at Nanina’s in The Park in Belleville.  To reserve tickets online, visit www.citybloom.org/luncheon or call 973.642.4646 for more information.

A New York Times best seller, “The Short and Tragic Life of Robert Peace” is the story of Hobbs’ college roommate, an academic all-star with a bright future that ended all too soon because of his ties to crime and violence in the streets of his hometown of Newark.

Two special honorees will also be recognized at the luncheon benefiting the Conservancy’s Newark Youth Leadership Project (NYLP); Dr. Robert L. Johnson, Dean of Rutgers New Jersey Medical School and Newark’s RBH Group, LLC.

Robert L. Johnson, MD, FAAP is The Sharon and Joseph L. Muscarelle Endowed Dean, Professor of Pediatrics and Director of the Division of Adolescent and Young Adult Medicine at Rutgers New Jersey Medical School (www.njms.rutgers.edu/). His clinical expertise and research focuses on adolescent physical and mental health, adolescent HIV, adolescent violence, adolescent sexuality and family strengthening. He Chairs the New Jersey Governor’s Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS, the Newark Ryan White Planning Council, and the Board of Deacons at Union Baptist Church in Orange, N.J.

Based in downtown Newark, RBH Group, LLC (www.rbhgrp.com) is a leader in the city’s current renaissance, with Teacher’s Village and other projects in Newark among the millions of square feet of commercial and residential real estate the company has acquired, developed, rehabilitated and/or operated under the leadership of founding partner and CEO Ron Beit.

NYLP is a year-round program for high school students from Newark and college students from around New Jersey. It emphasizes job training and seeks to improve conditions in the urban community by increasing employability and earning potential. NYLP’s three major goals are development of leadership skills, educational and career enrichment through instruction, tutoring and field trips, and development of employment-related skills.

“Since 1999, programs like NYLP have helped the Conservancy touch the lives of thousands of young adults eager to learn about the environment and urban agriculture, with many continuing their educations at top colleges and universities and finding successful career opportunities,” noted the Conservancy’s Executive Director, Robin Dougherty.

“As we celebrate our 30th Anniversary this year, we hope the luncheon and our honored guests will bring together longtime supporters and new to help continue Conservancy programs that provide our young people with an education that takes them beyond the conventional classroom.”