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Bob Downey ’91 and Cheryl Downey ’91

Alumni couple credits Montclair State for helping them achieve their individual successes, along with their 27 year-long marriage.

Posted in: Alumni Profiles

Bob and Cheryl Downey

Bob Downey ’91 and Cheryl Downey ’91 hold a special place in their hearts for Montclair State University, not only for the education they received, but also for being the place where they met and fell in love.

The couple met in 1989 through mutual friends on campus. “My favorite part of the college experience was meeting and hanging out with my future wife,” says Bob. On February 20, they will be celebrating 27 years of marriage alongside their two children.

Both Bob and Cheryl graduated in 1991, Bob with a B.S. in Business Administration and a concentration in Finance and Cheryl with a B.F.A. in Dance.

Bob is currently the Head Golf Professional at the Crestmont Country Club in West Orange, N.J. He first started working in the bag room of the country club while he was a student at Montclair State. He would have never imagined that his experience at the University would lead him to the golf profession.

“My college golf coach encouraged me to try the golf profession,” says Bob. “It was one of the best decisions I have ever made.” As a student, he was a member of the Montclair State golf team. There, he met Coach Peter Famiano who he credits for inspiring him to be the golf professional that he is today. At that time, Famiano was a Head Golf Professional at Crestmont.

Bob has since taken over as Head Professional where he can be found running the golf program at Crestmont. He can be on the range teaching the members, tending to customers in the golf shop, organizing the weekend tournament with his assistants, meeting with the golf course superintendent on conditions or on the course managing the pace of play.

While Bob is running a golf course, Cheryl is busy serving as a Dance Instructor at the Performing Arts Academy in Pompton Lakes and the School of Performing Arts at the Madison Area YMCA in Madison, NJ. Her career includes more than 30 years as a tap, ballet and jazz teacher at schools throughout New Jersey.

As a member of the Dance Repertory Company at Montclair State, Cheryl had the opportunity to perform all over the country, including the Gala Concert of the American Dance Festival in North Carolina. “Performing with the dance department and traveling to Arizona, Texas, and North Carolina is a fond memory that I have of my undergraduate years,” Cheryl says.

Cheryl credits her experience in the program and Lori Katterhenry, former Director of Dance, for shaping her into the educator and choreographer that she is today.

She recently became certified in Rhythm Works Integrative Dance, a training program focusing on students with special needs and learning differences. She is now a dance instructor for the Madison Area YMCA’s DanceAbilities, a 10-week program that focuses on skill development, self-empowerment and celebrating differences.

“I am grateful for having the opportunity to teach dance,” Cheryl says. “I have enjoyed working with children and adults, of all ages and abilities, and sharing my love of dance with them.”

As Bob and Cheryl reflect on their experiences as students, they advise current students to pursue their dreams, work hard, and enjoy each day. “Put your cell phones down and talk to people. You never know who you will meet,” they add.