Dr. Janelle Hall is a native of Passaic, NJ and growing up her family once relied on local social welfare organizations such as the United Passaic Organization to provide resources such as food and housing to aid them during a transient time of hardship. As a mother of 4, she also visited the organization to receive a helping hand. Hall used the “services as a steppingstone and persevere(d). (She) used this same system to become self-sufficient, (North Jersey)” she said. After receiving help from the organization, she  “wanted to use (her)  life experiences as an example that you can use the resources around you to succeed in the face of setbacks (North Jersey).”

Janelle, now a community builder and consultant, received her bachelors in sociology from William Paterson University of New Jersey, her masters in public administration from Farleigh Dickinson University, and her Ph.D in Public Policy and Administration from Walden University. In 2021, Janelle had a true full-circle moment when she took the position of Executive Director for the organization that she once relied on, the United Passaic Organization.

During her first six months on the job, Dr. Hall has already made a powerful impact on the community. She has rebranded the organization and transformed the UPO into a Community HUB where services and information are available to anyone who enters. She has redone the logo and added vibrancy so that it betters convey the organization’s commitment to community action and symbolizes the new phase that the organization is undergoing under Hall’s leadership.

UPO has had large success with addressing the cities food insecurity through several programs including a “food and nutrition program in partnership with the ShopRite of Passaic, a full-service food pantry, food education workshops, and by working with the the Newark-based United Community Corporation to provide hot meals to the homeless from the UCC Cafe Mobile Feeding program in partnership with Mount Pilgrim Missionary Baptist Church of Passaic” (Richard Grecco for UPO).

We are extremely inspired by Janelle’s story of perseverance and tenacity, and we know she will continue to have on overwhelmingly positive impact on Passaic and the Passaic County community at large. Dr. Hall is a current member of the Paterson Alumnae Chapter, visit here and here to read more about the incredible work she is doing in the community and add your congratulations below!

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