Three Franklin Women Among Those Honored By County

Dr. Tasneem Shamim, the FR&A’s PJ Parker, Nancy LaCorte and Terri Seggio prior to the dinner honoring the “Outstanding Women of Somerset County.”

Three Franklin women were among 10 honored March 26 as “Outstanding Women of Somerset County.”

The awards were bestowed by the Somerset County Commission on the Status of Women during a dinner at The Imperia on Easton Avenue.

Honored were Board of Education president Nancy LaCorte in the area of volunteerism, Sampson G. Smith Intermediate School musical director Terri Seggio in entertainment and Dr. Tasneem Firdaus Shamim, an ophthalmologist with a practice on Route 27, in medicine

The county commission also honored women in the categories of social service, journalism/media, hometown hero, environmental initiatives, education, business and the arts.

The women were honored because of their “drive to be the best that you can be in a variety of fields, and your unwavering  generosity of time and energy to all that you do,” said Janice Fields, the commission’s chairwoman.

“We do commend to you for being women of purpose,” she said. “That purpose is to serve others. You choose not to live a life only about yourself, but rather about others, you purposely take time away from your family and your life, the hours are immeasurable, the stress is unbelievable at time, and some moments just feel thankless. But you understand the beauty of serving others, and how your heart sings when you know you’ve made a difference in someone’s life.”

“I stand here tonight to tell you women of purpose, we understand, appreciate, and honor you,” Fields said. “We not only honor you, we salute you for being the women we all admire and aspire to be.”


We live-streamed an interview with the three Franklin Township winners prior to the dinner.

In addition to being the school board president, LaCorte works for the Franklin Food Bank and has also been an AmeriCorp volunteer and has volunteered with the New Jersey National Guard.

“I’m really blessed that my family and my friends understand that I am driven to give of myself and to give to others, and to encourage everyone else to do the same,” she said.

Seggio has worked at SGS for the past 18 years, during which time she helmed the school’s drama program.

Dedicating the award to her late mother, show Seggio said supported her in her dream to work on the stage, Seggio said, “her belief in me helped guide me on a very fulfilling path and I truly believe led me to this evening.”

“The theater program at SGS was built on the backs of so many committed students, parents and alumni, and they come back year after year,” she said. “I couldn’t do it without their hard work, belief and dedication to the program.”

“Growing up, the theater was where I belonged and thrived,” Seggio said. “It was my safe place in difficult times, and my happy place all the time. I learned lifelong skills from every aspect of the process.”

Shamim is the founder of the Medical Women’s Coalition, also known as the Muslim Women’s Coalition, and is co-leader of the Somerset/Highland Park chapter of the Sisterhood of Salaam Shalom, a Jewish/Muslim women’s group.

“It is humbling for me to stand here with all you who deserve this far more than me,” she said. “As we go through the journey of life, we have work to do because of the support of the people around us and the opportunities that God has given to us.”

“In this world we need to spread a lot of love, peace and mercy to all people,” she said.


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