Our Story

Our Mission

Our mission is to improve the quality of life for anyone impacted by brain injury by providing support, advocacy, and information, while promoting brain injury prevention.

Our Vision

Our vision is a world where all individuals with brain injury and their caregivers maximize their quality of life, the consequences of all unavoidable brain injuries are minimized and all preventable brain injuries are prevented.

BIANJ is a chartered state affiliate of the United States Brain Injury Alliance (USBIA), and together, united, we are inspiring hope and improving the lives of our citizens with brain injury.

Since being founded in 1981 by a small group of concerned parents of children who had sustained brain injury, we’ve grown to become the primary source of information, education, advocacy, support, and hope for people with brain injury and their families in New Jersey. Today, our dedicated staff, board, volunteers, donors, and community partners provide service to 10,000 New Jersey residents each year. View the Annual Report.

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Make a difference for people impacted by brain injury today.

Our Staff

Helpline: 1-800-669-4323
Email: info@bianj.org

Main Office: 732- 745-0200

Rita Steindlberger, MSUP
Chief Executive Officer

Wendy Berk, LCSW, CBIS
Vice President of Development and Communications


Jennifer Suresh
Director of Operations

Jan Beauchamp
Administrative Assistant

Ava Fornaro
Program Assistant

Kris Hopwood
Technology Coordinator


Naomi Torres-Fernandez
Director of Finance

Susan Gerringer
Accounting/Finance Associate

Gisela Rutch
Finance Department Advisor


Kristen Olsen
Director of Communications

and Outreach

Barbara Chabner, PsyD
Director of Education and Outreach

Debbie Aidelman, MS
Education and Development Coordinator

Kate O’Connor, MPH
Public Education Coordinator

Susan Quick, CBIS
Public Education Coordinator

Mandi Zucker, LSW
Education Facilitator


Tom Grady, MPA, DTM
Director of Advocacy and Public Affairs

Support Coordination

Nicole DeLorenzo, MS
Co-Director of Support Coordination

Kara Francis
Co-Director of Support Coordination

Doris Burns
Support Coordinator

Jenny DePaul
Support Coordinator

Nicole Hatcher
Support Coordinator

Jade Hrubash, MHS
Support Coordinator

Sue Irby, CBIS
Support Coordinator

Heather Klouser
Support Coordinator

Rebecca Martin
Support Coordinator

Amber Navara, MSW
Support Coordinator

Shannon O’Donnell
Support Coordinator

Kim Pedersen
Support Coordinator/Mentor

Support Services

Debra Crossman, MA
Director of Support Services

Valerie Farrow
Family Support Care Coordinator

Lorraine Ferreria
Community Resource Specialist

Stacy Lyons, CBIS
Community Integration Coordinator

Shannon O’Connor
Community Resources Specialist

Fior Vinajero
Community Resource Specialist

We’re here to help. Call 1-800-669-4323.