Meet Your ABC Board
The board is made of up cooperative members who serve two-year terms. The board is elected by members, and is the decision-making body for the co-op. Board elections occur annually at the member meeting.
A graduate of Asbury Park High School, Central State University, Ohio, and a retired AT&T Sales and Marketing employee. My career began as an account executive in Manhattan. The tenure included selling equipment and network to Fortune 500 companies, creating and managing trade shows, providing competitive research and at retirement was the Eastern Region Sales Support Manager for Videoconfercing and Switched Digital Services.
In retirement, managed a NYC hair salon, and owned a small business with my husband, BYG Hair, distributing and selling hair pieces and wigs. Also had my dream job, a temporary position with Cirque du Soleil, not as a performer.
Currently serve on the Asbury Park City Council and Planning Board. Volunteer activities include mentoring ex offenders seeking expungement and, board member of AP-AMP, an organization focused on preserving and sharing the musical history of Springwood Avenue and the Westside.
I am a widow with four children and two granddaughters. My very special place is the beach and traveling, my favorite activity.
Michael Connolly (Board Secretary)
Books have always held a special place in Michael’s life. His mother taught him to read at an early age and she always had money to spare when the Bookmobile came to town. While others were stocking up on toilet paper at the outset of the pandemic, Michael was at ABC buying a bagful of books.
A graduate of Villanova University’s Honors Program, Michael favors biographies, classic novels, poetry and histories. Along the way, Michael also managed to read a fair number of law books - he is an attorney who has represented several Asbury Park businesses.
While Michael believes that Asbury Park is a very special place, he cannot imagine an Asbury without a vibrant independent bookstore. Michael is honored to serve on the initial ABC Board and is committed to giving his time, efforts and talents to this great undertaking.
Julie Hertzog grew up in Ohio reading novels surreptitiously under the covers after bedtime with a flashlight, and then she learned how to walk and talk faster during 30 years of living in Manhattan. She now enjoys tending her grass-less yard and cooking with herbs from her garden in Asbury Park. Her career has focused on policy and management positions in government and non-profit organizations, including the House of Representatives, The City of New York Office of Management and Budget, and Amnesty International of the USA. For the last decade, she has consulted with social enterprises in the areas of affordable housing, impact investing, and civic sector management consulting. Julie has served on the boards of The Center for Urban Pedagogy and the Bloomingdale Family Head Start Program.
Kate Lydon (Treasurer)
Kate Lydon has been a resident of Asbury Park since 2014 when she and her husband purchased a bed & breakfast in town. While running the B&B, she became close with the Asbury Park small business community and a trustee of the Asbury Park Chamber of Commerce. Kate currently works for Salt Hotels in revenue management and previously worked in investor relations at a private equity firm in New York City. She has two young children, loves reading, cooking, good TV and afternoons on the beach.
Liza Minno (Co-op Manager/Book Buyer)
Liza is an educator, community organizer, and bookstore enthusiast who is committed to building accessible and democratic community spaces in Asbury Park. Over the years, she has taught in Sociology and Gender Studies departments, and she works as a popular education racial justice trainer for a few organizations. She has worked at bookstores since college. She is passionate about helping to build a place that fosters community investment and supports the activist and art worlds of Asbury Park.
Mike came to the community of Asbury Park by way of the punk and hardcore music scenes as well as mutual aid organizations. Reading has been a love of his since his childhood and has only grown since then. His passions include his family, his study of Vedanta and Yogic philosophy, animal and human rights activism, community organizing, and his desire to be an agent of positive change in his community. Mike works with the Light Brigade Collective, a group of people who collaboratively put on punk, hardcore and hip hop shows in Asbury Park to support locally run community based social justice organizations, as well as Jersey Shore Food Not Bombs, a mutual aid collective that distributes free vegan meals and produce weekly to the community. He is passionate and excited to be working with an independent, community run book store that focuses on community building and social change.
Shannon Vargo (Board President)
Shannon Vargo has been a resident of Asbury Park since 2005. Her love of books led her to a career in book publishing where she has spent the last 23 years of her career. Her love of small business came out of helping her mom run the family business—a bridal boutique in Morris County. Shannon is dedicated to supporting small businesses and driving awareness of how the decisions people make every day about how they spend their money can impact the strength and success of our communities. In her spare time, Shannon helps rescue and foster stray cats. You can usually find her on the boardwalk with her husband and two young daughters.
Heather Lennon Vieiro
Heather Lennon Vieiro is a big believer in independent book stores and the power of community. She has worked in children's book publishing for twenty five years, with a background in sales and marketing. Heather is excited to part of ABC's next chapter. She lives in Middletown with her husband, daughter, and dog.
Meet Your ABC Booksellers
(Thanks to Adrian Bacolo for the Bookseller Portraits. Find Adrian on IG: @adrianb718)
Dayra Mejia Reyes
Michael Newton (Used Book Manager)