About Us

Board of Directors

Diane Eleftheriades, President/Founder...contact@bridgepeace.org

Karen Bailey Bebert, Vice President

Cindy Mariani, Treasurer

Mary Casella, Events

Master Sgt. Robert Bruce, US Military Representative

Howard B. Leibowitz, B.L.Howard Productions, Event Planner...howard@blhowardproductions.com

Marianne Riscoe, Art Director

Toni Ann David, Promotions

Theresa L. Battagliotti, Events

Michael Grau, Events

Advisory Board

Fr. Louis Marie Navaratne, OSB Holy Face Monastery, Prof. of Theology

Mayor Kennedy O'Brien, Sayreville, New Jersey

Assemblyman John Wisniewski, New Jersey Legislator

Michael Frisch, Liberty State Park Project Engineer, Teamwrks.org - With sorrow, Michael Frisch has recently passed on. He is greatly missed. Due to his faith in our work early on, we will continue to honor him here. Perhaps he will continue to advise us from a higher place.

Diane Eleftheriades aka "Diane Ele"
President, Founder

Education: BS - Computer Science - New Jersey City University, NJ USA
MA Courses - Media Studies/Film Directing - The New School, New York

Diane started Bridges of Peace from a vision in 1997 in an effort to help foster peace in this world through music events and help children whose lives have been troubled by the ills of war and poverty. Over the years through many long hours as a labor of love through her hard efforts she has been able to recruit many good people to the cause. This includes the trusted Board of Directors as well as many wonderful artists both famous and non famous. Famous artists include Pete Seeger and Jon Bon Jovi.

Diane has worked as a producer and entertainment reporter for several websites including her own, plasmachannel.com where she hosted a show and has interviewed many famous music artists since 1999. Through these interviews she used the opportunity to ask questions on "How the artist would change the world?" and if "they felt the power of music can build a Bridge towards Peace?". This effort was to try and raise awareness for peace and love through music and inspire change.

She feels that music is a powerful resource in creating understanding which can bring change to our world. She says that "The ‘Power Of Music’ is so great that it can move people to new ways of thinking. We wish to reach the souls of people through music. The artists are the ones to reach them and open their hearts; we are just the ones to put them all together for a unified purpose of love, peace and kind works of charity.” ~Diane Eleftheriades is quoted in the Aquarian Magazine about their first Bridges of Peace Jam Concert held on Nov. 23 2008. Items were collected for their "Help a Child through a Soldier" Dirve to aid the children of Iraq to be sent and distributed by our US soldiers building a Bridge of Peace between them.

On 2/23/09 Jon Bon Jovi sponsored a Bridges of Peace - "Help a Child through a Soldier" Drive at his fanclub concert which was held at the Starland Ballroom in Sayreville, NJ. Bridges of Peace received many thousands of items from the fans which filled an entire U-Haul truck with soccer balls, toys, sports equipment, art and school supplies and other items. This further promoted the mission of raising awareness for Peace and Love through music and helping children of war and poverty.

Diane has also created and edited her own videos (Both Spiritual and Entertainment) with her Entertainment Website plasmachannel.com(1999-2005). Prior to this, by profession she is a computer professional and has worked for 12 years in the corporate world as a Computer Programmer and Systems Analyst for IBM, UPS and Prudential.

Due to an illness in 2005, Diane has been forced to rethink her priorities. She was hit very hard with an episode of Multiple Sclerosis which left her with severe pain, loss of use of her left arm and weakness in her limbs. Since then she focuses on her family, regaining her health and her mission with Bridges of Peace. Fortunately she has improved over the last few years. She continues to lead the organization with the help of her board of directors, family and friends.

Bridges of Peace became incorporated in January 2004 and is a 501c(3) tax exempt charity organization.

Diane is a married mother of 2 children.

Karen Bailey Bebert
Vice President

Education: BS - Accounting - University of Hartford, CT USA

Karen was crucial in the formation and incorporation of Bridges of Peace and is the Vice President of the Organization which raises awareness for Peace and Love through music and the arts and helps children whose lives have been adversely affected by war and poverty. She is a great organizer and leader and is crucial to the organization's efforts in planning with a hands on approach putting her heart and soul into the efforts.

She has been actively involved for many years in leadership roles for various non profit organizations within her community and church. She has been the President of the Council of Catholic Women for her parish for 4 years as well as Vice President for 2 years. She was also the Achdiocsese Treasurer for 2 years. She has been the PTO president for 2 years for the upper elementary school of Sayreville, NJ which houses 900 students and also the president for 2 years of the Arleth School PTO. She also is founder and president of the Love Life group in her parish.

Karen had worked as a public accountant for several years. Currently, she works for and manages her family owned business.

Karen resides in New Jersey with her 2 children Wayne and Kristy.

Mary Casella
Fundraising/Event Organizer

Mary has been very active in many philanthropic and non-profit organizations throughout the years. She has co-founded "Project Appalachia", a church organization, that provides school supplies, food, clothing, and other necessities for the needy in Harlan and Wallen's Creek, Kentucky.

She is currently involved with Bridges of Peace in putting together a concerts for Peace in New Jersey.

She works for a publishing company, United Communications Group, in the energy division.

Mary resides in New Jersey with her husband, Mario and three children, James, Matthew and Andrew.

Howard B. Leibowitz, B.L.Howard Productions
Event Planner
howard@blhowardproductions.com voice:347-254-6753

Howard B. Leibowitz attended grade school with Arlo, Joady and Nora Guthrie, the offspring of American music icon Woody Guthrie, where he learned to appreciate music and the arts. Howard has been involved with New York City’s music scene since the age of 11, when he snuck out of his Brooklyn home to catch a rock and roll show at the legendary Brooklyn Paramount Theatre and then became President of the Brooklyn chapter of disc jockey “Cousin” Bruce Morrow’s fan club when he was just 13.

For three decades, Howard was in the financial services industry, serving in product and marketing roles for two Fortune 500 global financial service companies. Concurrent with his full-time duties, he kept active in the entertainment field, with free lance stints as a published photographer, writer, promoter and tour manager. Howard also worked for a time with legendary photographer David Gahr and some of his work was published in the Robert Hilburn biography, Bruce Springsteen (Rolling Stone Press). Other work appears in the biography, “Magic in the Night: The Words and Music of Bruce Springsteen” published by St. Martin’s Press in Mach of 2009.

In the mid nineties, Howard produced free concerts for The Seaport Merchants Association at the South Street Seaport, culminating in “100 Nights of Music,” a jam-packed series of free shows that ran on Pier 17 from May to September. He booked a diverse array of talent, from Irish rockers The Corrs to Kid Creole & Coconuts and Orleans, from a broad span of genres such as folk, rock, jazz, blues, and world music. In addition, he reeled in sponsors including radio stations Z-100, WKTU, WNEW FM and WLIR, as well as Coca-Cola, Pepsi and Evian. In the summer of 1995, Howard helped to bring a trial edition of ESPN’s X Games Road Show to the Seaport. As music consultant for Visit Florida, USA (the official tourism marketing corporation for the State of Florida), he secured music talent for travel media events in the Northeast region.

Today, Howard is Advertising and Promotion Director for Elmore Magazine and an active member of the Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy, serving on the committee for the annual summer film series, “Movies With A View”. He is also a member of community organizations including the Nottingham Association and The Prospect Park Alliance, and is a founding member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Howard is presently working on planning fund raising events for the non-profit charity organizations Bridges of Peace, Holiday Express and the Brooklyn Bureau of Community Service.

Theresa L. Battagliotti
Fundraising/Event Organizer

Theresa L. Battagliotti grew up listening to & playing music from a very young age. Her 1st exposure to music that she remembers is her maternal grandfather playing accordian at her 3rd birthday party. She's been "hooked" ever since! Teri as she's known to friends plays guitar, bass, & harmonica and has played in several bands including the all-girl "Street Angels" who debuted at the Jersey Shore.

As a graduate of New York University with a Bachelor in Fine Arts degree & active alumni member, she was "on the scene" at CBGB's, Max's Kansas City, & the Mudd Club and is founder of her own interior design firm specializing in high-end residential http://designerstouchinteriors.com/ She went to school with director Chris Columbus & grew up in Jersey near Bon Jovi & Springsteen. She is a member of the National Association of Historic Preservation & an active philanthropist for music education & humanitarian programs including St. Jude's Children's Hospital.

Theresa resides in Edison, NJ with her husband Albert & extended family. She can be found on http://facebook.com/TheresaZarish-Battagliotti/, http://linkedin.com/TheresaBattagliotti/, http://twitter.com/designerluv1/

Copyright © by Bridges of Peace All Right Reserved.

Published on: 2004-05-25 (12103 reads)

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