Our Board

Abigail A. Daly

Founder and Executive Director

Abby spent several years representing both children and adults who were involuntarily committed to psychiatric hospitals and then the New Jersey Division of Youth and Family Services in abuse and neglect actions and termination of parental rights cases. She is a graduate of Smith College and Dickinson School of Law. In 2001, she left the practice of law to be at home with her children. Bringing the Bridge of Books to New Jersey provided a perfect vehicle for her to remain involved with at-risk children, to pursue her love of reading and to expose her children to the concept of giving back to the community.

Susan Murray

Susan is the Educational Technology Coordinator at Oak Hill Academy and strives to combine her love for all things books with all things tech. In addition, Susan is the Managing Director of WasteNot Solutions, a waste and recycling consulting practice she launched in 2007. Susan earned a Bachelor of Arts in Communications from Villanova University and a Master of Science in Education from Wheelock College. The values evidenced by the Bridge of Books Foundation are near and dear to her heart.

Amanda Lehman

Amanda Lehman was born and raised in Monmouth County and has lived in New Jersey her whole life. She earned her BA from Rutgers College and her JD from Seton Hall Law. Amanda has an appreciation for the importance of a robust education. After working as a litigator for 15 years, she was looking for a way to give back to her community. Amanda was drawn to Bridge of Books as this organization provides books to children who might not otherwise have access to reading outside of school, thereby building an interest in reading and independent learning.

Liza Tamashunas

Liza Tamashunas spent over a decade teaching middle school ELA and Humanities in both New York City and New Jersey. As an avid childhood reader, teaching about reading and writing seemed the next best thing to reading books all day. Liza has a BA in English from Georgetown University and an M.Ed. in Secondary Teaching of English from Boston College. Liza first met Abby while working as the PTO co-president at her children’s school and serving as the liaison to the Book Fair.

They share a love of reading and a mission to increase kids’ access to books. After moving away from classroom teaching, Liza is enthusiastic about getting more involved with Bridge of Books. Reading and books provide us all with the opportunity to enter other worlds and access new experiences.

Colleen Seldin

Colleen has a BS degree in Accounting from the University of Rhode Island and a MBA in Finance from Pace University. With more than 25 years of experience in marketing and publicity, in October 2017, she launched COLCO Marketing and Media and is currently sharing her marketing and digital media skills and expertise with a wide range of companies and non-profit organizations including Bridge of Books.

After meeting Abby at a program for local non-profits at Monmouth University, Colleen was excited about the opportunity to work with Bridge of Books to help make a difference in the lives of children throughout New Jersey. She joined the Board in February 2020.

Danielle Sammut

Danielle Sammut is using her spotlight as the reigning Miss New Jersey for America Strong to promote the mission of The Bridge of Books Foundation. She fell in love with the organization when she heard about their Book Ark library project that unites community members together through the love of reading. Danielle graduated from The College of New Jersey with a BA in English and Secondary Education and plans to publish her first novel Love Yourself First in the fall. She dedicates her life to helping kids reach their potential as an advisor to the Monroe Township Middle School’s Builders Club, a Kiwanis youth program that aims to develop capable and caring leaders through the vehicle of service.

As a 7th grade Language Arts teacher for nearly ten years, she believes that there is no such thing as a kid who doesn’t like to read, but only a child who has not found the right book. She hopes to use her partnership with The Bridge of Books to ensure that all kids across the state, despite any barriers, have access to the most diverse and rich reading experiences that books can offer!

Rita Cotterell

Rita, a lifelong resident of Monmouth County, worked as a CPA with an
international public accounting firm for 12 years until leaving the
workforce to raise her 4 children. While home taking care of the children, Rita spent a significant amount of time working with children including being a Girl Scout Leader, PTA Volunteer, Religious Education Teacher, Little League Coach, and Soccer Coach. After much thought, she decided to switch the direction of her career and focus exclusively on children. After receiving her teaching degree, she began working at Oak Hill Academy in Lincroft teaching math to upper school students and has just completed her 20th year there.

Rita’s inspiration to work with Bridge of Books stems largely from her mother. Her mother, the oldest girl in a family of 7 children, was required to stop attending school after she completed 8th grade so she could help her mother take care of her siblings. Her mother was deeply saddened that her formal education ended so abruptly, so she used books as her vehicle to continue to learn. At 95 years old, the doctors still comment on her vocabulary, which was primarily derived from her passion to read.

Kathleen Marinich

Kathleen is a lifelong resident of Middletown Township, living in the River Plaza section with her husband, three children and dog. She graduated from Stockton State College with a BA in Sociology and Anthropology. After college, Kathleen took a job with Johnson & Johnson in New Brunswick where she learned the importance of teamwork and giving back to the community. Kathleen embraced J&J’s mission statement on volunteerism by volunteering her time at local food pantries.

Embracing her love for youth education, Kathleen served on the Parent Faculty Association (‘PFA’) at River Plaza Elementary School for many years, including four years as President. As PFA President, Kathleen partnered with many volunteer organizations such as Middletown Helps Its Own, Lunch Break, and the Blessing Bag Brigade.

Kathleen’s biggest strengths are her love of fundraising and her communication skills. She initially joined Bridge of Books as the Office Manager in the brand-new Atlantic Highlands Office in April 2023. Kathleen is excited to join the Board to use her strengths to focus on help to facilitate Bridge of Books’ fundraising efforts.

Christa Teter

Christa Teter has a background in education, social work, publishing, and performing arts. Christa was a volunteer with the Jesuit Volunteer Corps, an executive assistant at The New Yorker magazine, and a producer and artistic manager at Jazz at Lincoln Center. Upon leaving NYC, she decided that teaching was a natural way to integrate her passions for social justice, reading, writing, the arts, and education further. Currently, Christa is in her fourteenth year of teaching middle school ELA and Social Studies. She has also been a writing instructor at Project Write Now and a Religious Education teacher in Red Bank. Christa holds a BA in English from St. Anselm College and an M.Ed. in Teaching with an endorsement for Students with Disabilities from Georgian Court University. Knowing that reading strengthens our minds and imaginations, which leads to confidence, making informed decisions, and opportunities to lead a successful and productive life, Christa believes in the Bridge of Books Foundation’s mission to get books into the hands of underserved children in New Jersey.