Category Archives: Rising Stars

Hip New Jersey sits with the state’s up-and-comers before they hit the mainstream. We’ll find out what motivates them on their journey to the top!

Working Mom

Andi Pasquin on Being a Working Mom

Andi Pasquin, Wells Fargo Home Mortgage Consultant, stopped by the #HipNJ studio to chat with Maria Falzo about her work with Wells Fargo in Summit.

Pasquin has been in mortgage banking for 15 years. 9 of those years have been spent with Wells Fargo, servicing the whole state of New Jersey. She primarily helps NJ’s law enforcement community. “It’s very rewarding to help those that help us,” she states.

“There’s a lot of balance and struggle that goes along with trying to have a successful career and also be a successful parent,” the working mom says. “So, I try my hardest every day.”

Pasquin offers some advice for maximizing your time. She states that she has tried to identify pockets of time she calls “empty space.” “Rather than listening to the radio or making personal calls, I try to capture anything I can get done professionally in that time space,” she explains.

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New Jersey Author and Entrepreneur Makeba Green

Lisa Marie Latino brings Newark native Makeba Green, author of the book Successful Leaders of New Jersey: Volume I, into the #HipNJ studio to talk about her newest release Entrepreneurship, The Best Job In the World. Green is an entrepreneur and philanthropist – dedicating her photography business, OMG Photography, to fundraising for the purpose of student scholarships.

Green’s motivation behind the book is her passion for inspiring the next generation of leaders. By showing the accomplishments and failures of today’s most effective managers, Green thinks her advice will resonate with the young audience better than simply relaying typical biographies. She says that even prominent CEOs have moments of doubts and failure ranging from not wanting to complete simple tasks to failing at important assignments.

The issue is especially important to Green who sites the support she received from both of her parents as the impetus she needed to succeed. Growing up in an urban setting, she could see that not everyone had a system of encouragement to help them in times of need.

Some people that she covers in her book are Modia Butler, adviser to Senator Cory Booker; Ras Baraka, Mayor of Newark; and Donald Payne, Jr., Essex County Congressman, just to name a few.

Makeba adopts a positive view on life and touts the advice of Richard Douglas who said, “Without struggle there is no progress”. She likes this quote because she feels that you cannot truly know success until you have experienced some setbacks. Additionally, she is not afraid to pave her own path by “marching to the beat of her own drum”, as she puts it.

Makeba Green is truly an inspiration to youths who are otherwise intimidated by the possible failures that come along with striving for excellence. You can purchase Green’s book in paperback or Kindle edition. Order your copy today!

Isadora Williams

Montclair State University’s Isadora Williams at the Winter Olympics

#HipNJ’s Lisa Marie Latino sat down with Isadora Williams, Brazilian figure skating Olympian. While studying at Montclair State University, Williams has been training for the 2018 Winter Olympics, beginning on Friday, February 9th in South Korea.

Isadora spoke about her life as a figure skater in her youth and how her mother’s heritage and her dual citizenship inspired her to represent Brazil now and in the last Winter Olympic Games. “One of my biggest goals was to get the sport to advance in the country,” she said. “There’s so many able athletes but there wasn’t an established program at the time.”

She looks forward to helping them build and expand their team. As a student and athlete, Isadora is keeping herself well-rounded by also working as a coach in between her crazy schedule of studying and training! Isadora described her last time in the Olympics as a “dream come true,” and she is looking forward to building upon the “learning lessons” from 2014 to better her performance this time around.

The Montclair State University community has embraced Isadora’s goal for the gold. She trains at the campus’ Floyd Hall Arena, and classmates have cheered her on throughout her rigorous training schedule and rise to fame. This support has “kept her humble” throughout this exciting journey. 

Be sure to tune into Isadora Williams’ routines this year, and follow her “icecapades” on Twitter and Instagram