Homepage Latest News

Carolyn M. Welsh appointed Chief Operating Officer for NJ Sharing Network

We are pleased to announce that Carolyn Welsh has been appointed Chief Operating Officer for NJ Sharing Network.

“For 23 years, Carolyn’s leadership has helped NJ Sharing Network consistently achieve record growth in the number of lives saved and enhanced through organ and tissue donation and transplantation,” said NJSN President and CEO Joseph S. Roth. “Carolyn’s combination of intellect, passion and compassion have enabled her to make a positive impact, not only here in New Jersey, but within the broader organ and tissue donation community.”

Welsh, who previously served as Vice President and Chief Clinical Officer, will oversee the day-to-day administrative and operational functions of NJ Sharing Network, including leading the organization’s clinical services, information technology, human resources, regulatory compliance, performance improvement, hospital and community outreach, and communications.

Since joining NJ Sharing Network in 1999 as a Hospital Services Manager, Welsh has continually advanced to take on new responsibilities. In addition to her role at NJ Sharing Network, Welsh serves on the Board of Directors of Eversight and on the Chief Operating Officer (COO) Council of the Association of Organ Procurement Organizations (AOPO). She previously served on the United Network for Organ Sharing’s (UNOS) OPTN OPO Committee. “I am honored to work with our dedicated team of professionals, community volunteers and partners who are committed to saving lives and improving the health and wellbeing of our neighbors,” said Welsh. “Working to change the world with donation and transplantation is my purpose, and I am excited to take on additional responsibilities and challenges to further advance our life-saving mission.”

Welsh earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Psychology from Seton Hall University and a Master’s Degree in Organizational Leadership and Nonprofit Management from North Central University. Welsh lives in Colts Neck, NJ with her husband, Tom, their sons Scott and Kyle, and their family dog, Riley.

Homepage Latest News Uncategorized

Celebrate National Donor Day with us on February 14!

February 14 is National Donor Day, dedicated to spreading awareness about donation and honoring the generosity of organ and tissue donors and their families.

One donor can save 8 lives and enhance the lives of over 75 others.

Join us in our life-saving mission by encouraging someone today to register as an organ and tissue donor.

Read the heartwarming stories of hope below. There’s no greater way to share the love than through the gift of life!

Bernard China of Newark calls December 30 his “second birthday” to remember the date of his life-saving heart transplant at Newark Beth Israel Medical Center (NBI). The road to Bernard’s transplant began in August 2017, when he woke during the night and found it hard to breathe. Tests showed signs of heart failure and his condition worsened in the months and years ahead. On December 29, 2020, Bernard had been despondent on a call with his wife, Constance, as he waited for a transplant miracle. Constance and their five children urged him to rely on the strong faith they shared. “Bernard, it’s going to come,” Constance insisted. Shortly after midnight, Bernard received the call he was waiting for as a heart was available for transplant. Today, Bernard feels blessed to be back to many of his normal activities and is forever mindful of the selfless decision made by his organ donor.

Jill Szalony of Montclair and her family recently celebrated the five-year anniversary of her life-saving heart transplant. Jill reflects every day on the gift of life that her donor gave her and the miracle of organ donation and transplantation. Jill is an active volunteer with the NJ Sharing Network, encouraging others to register as organ and tissue donors. She is also a member of Newark Beth Israel Medical Center’s Patient Family Advisory Council to help provide healing and support. “All donor families are heroes,” said Jill. “To give others hope and a chance at life when they are faced with sorrow – that is a selfless act of love and kindness. I try to live my life to the fullest in honor of my donor. Whenever I experience beauty in the world, a new adventure, or something amazing with my family, I thank my donor and her family.”

Help spread the word by visiting us on Facebook and Instragram and sharing our life-saving message with friends and family!

Homepage Latest News

New Jersey’s Support for Organ and Tissue Donation Reached an All-Time High

In 2021, New Jerseyans continued to show their caring spirit like never before as it was another record-breaking year for NJ Sharing Network – saving and enhancing more lives! The number of organ donors in a single year reached an all-time high as 233 generous individuals gave the gift of life, a 5% increase over last year’s previous record.

We owe these achievements, first and foremost, to our donor heroes, as well as their supportive families. We forever honor them for their selfless decision to save and enhance the lives of countless others who now have more holidays, birthdays and special moments to share with their loved ones.

We are also grateful for the extraordinary efforts of our team members and healthcare partners who work around the clock to help power our life-saving mission. The miracle of donation and transplantation would not be possible without the dedicated support and expertise of our local transplant centers and hospital partners.

The number of New Jerseyans saying ‘YES’ to registering as an organ and tissue donor also jumped 8.3% in 2021, underscoring the overwhelming support for donation in the Garden State.

In 2021, 599 organs were transplanted thanks to donors in New Jersey, including 322 kidneys, 151 livers (new record for liver recoveries), 57 hearts, 49 lungs and 20 pancreases. In addition, 42,112 eye and tissue donations healed and enhanced the quality of life for those in need. Tissue donations include corneas, heart valves, skin grafts, bone grafts, saphenous veins, ligaments, and tendons.

According to United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS), nearly 4,000 people in New Jersey are on the organ transplant waiting list, and one person dies every three days waiting for a transplant. However, New Jersey’s generosity is providing hope for the future. One organ donor can save eight lives, and one tissue donor can enhance the lives of over 75 people.

NJ Sharing Network is well prepared to handle what comes our way thanks to friends, like you. We now move ahead – together – with the hope of even-brighter days to come! Let’s never lose sight of the many blessings we’ve been given, and remember that even the simplest act of kindness can make a world of difference to those around us.

Thank you for giving of yourself to help others and for all that do to save and enhance lives each and every day!

Joseph S. Roth President and Chief Executive Officer

Homepage Latest News

Fair Lawn’s Frank Piccininni Celebrates Son’s 20-Year Heart Transplant Anniversary by Running ‘Homemade’ Marathon to Raise Awareness and Funds to Support Organ and Tissue Donation

Frank Piccininni of Fair Lawn, NJ, recently ran his own ‘homemade’ 26.2-mile marathon in Bergen County to raise awareness and funds to support the Sharing Network Foundation and the Hearts for Emma Partner Fund. Family and friends of the Piccininni family came together to raise more than $4,600 in honor of Frank’s son Christopher Piccininni’s 20-year heart transplant anniversary.
“Christopher was given a second chance at life when he received a heart transplant in December 2001 when he was just 6-months old,” said Frank. “Without this gift, Christopher would not be with us today. His life is a daily reminder of the power of organ and tissue donation and transplantation. We feel extremely blessed, and are committed to raising awareness about the importance of registering as organ and tissue donors to help save lives.”

During Frank’s homemade “Running for Christopher” marathon, he trekked through neighborhoods and paths in Fair Lawn, Rochelle Park and Ridgewood before ending his route in Dunkerhook Park in Paramus. Although Frank has completed at least nine official marathons, he wanted this one to be extra special in honor of Christopher’s transplant anniversary. After 4:20:56 (four hours, 20 minutes, 6 seconds), Frank was greeted at the finish line by his wife Jacky, sons Christopher and Ryan, and many friends and loved ones.

“When I was thinking about doing this, I didn’t want to travel and, because he is immunocompromised, I wanted to keep Christopher safe,” said Frank. “I am used to running alone so it was inspiring to see my family and friends at the start, finish and throughout the route.”

Christopher, now 20, was just nine weeks old when he was diagnosed with dilated cardiomyopathy, a condition which enlarged his heart, making it unable to pump enough blood. His only hope for survival was a heart transplant. After spending four months at Mount Sinai Medical Center’s Pediatric ICU in Manhattan, thanks to his donor, he underwent a successful heart transplant, giving him a second chance at life.

Christopher continues to live a healthy and active lifestyle as a student at NJIT studying biomedical engineering. He graduated from Fair Lawn High School where he competed as a varsity swimmer all four years.

“I am so proud of my dad for running to raise money for the Sharing Network Foundation and the Hearts for Emma Partner Fund,” said Christopher. “After being given 20 years of life that I wouldn’t have gotten without a transplant, the only thing we can do in return is to help raise funds and advocate for organ and tissue donation.”

Download PDF Press Release


A holiday message from our President and CEO

Dear Friends and Partners,

William Arthur Ward, a popular American writer who infused many inspirational messages into his poems and articles, once said, “Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it.” His words ring true, especially during this holiday season and as we get set to enter 2022 with a renewed energy after a challenging time.

Our NJ Sharing Network family is forever grateful to the generous donors and their families who gave the gift of life. We celebrate and honor donor heroes for their selfless decision to save and enhance the lives of countless others who now have more holidays, birthdays and special moments to share with their loved ones.

I also want to express my personal appreciation for our team members, healthcare partners and volunteers who power our efforts each and every day. You give hope to the nearly 4,000 people in the Garden State who are waiting for a life-saving transplant. In recent months, we have been grateful to come together and safely reconnect in person, including our activities to raise awareness in our faith-based communities during National Donor Sabbath.

We now move ahead - together - with the hope of even-brighter days to come! Let’s never lose sight of the many blessings we’ve been given, and remember that even the simplest act of kindness can make a world of difference to those around us.

I wish you a joyful holiday season and a happy and healthy new year!

Advocacy and Education Homepage Latest News

National Donor Sabbath

In November, we celebrated National Donor Sabbath with activities focused on educating faith-based communities about the critical need for organ and tissue donation, and the vital role faith plays in making the decision to register as a donor. Most major religions in the United States support donation as an unselfish act of charity. Several local faith leaders and those active in their faith community shared inspirational stories and unique perspectives during Faith and the Miracle of Organ and Tissue Donation, an entertaining, informative event streamed live on NJ Sharing Network’s Facebook or YouTube channels.

Homepage Latest News

On the Road Again

The popular NJ Sharing Network promotional van has hit the streets with a brand new design! Be sure to keep an eye out and honk (gently) if you see the van on the road for upcoming events.

Advocacy and Education Homepage Latest News

Every Community Needs Heroes

Community outreach and education always plays a critical role in NJ Sharing Network’s life-saving mission. In recent months, team members, advocates, volunteers and partners were thrilled to begin safely reconnecting in person. Partner hospitals, schools, houses of worship and neighborhood organizations have also resumed many awareness events and activities. Outreach efforts continue to flourish online and in local news media thanks to those who share their uplifting stories and messages.

NJ Sharing Network’s “Every Community Needs Heroes” communications campaign is giving a strong boost to outreach efforts with an inspiring message that conveys the importance of registering as an organ and tissue donor. It features a variety of photos showing donor heroes of all ages, races and ethnicities united by a common focus on helping others. Digital and print templates can be used ‘as is’ or customized to effectively connect with all audiences! Learn more and download resources at