Celeste Marie Fasone ’71

Celeste Marie Fasone ’71 recently retired from her role as Director of the New Jersey Office of Cable Television after more than 23 years of service.  Fasone was the first female and longest serving director at the OCTV.

Besides her accomplishments in her role as Director of NJOCTV, Fasone has also achieved many feats in the fields of broadcast journalism.  In 1979, she was named Sportscaster of the Year and in 1985 awarded the title of Broadcaster of the Year by the regional Special Olympics Committee. She has won numerous ACE awards as well as others with United Artist Entertainment.

While at Montclair State University, Fasone majored in Education and English, with a minor in Journalism.  She recalls one professor, Dr. Rich, in the Education Department, who she says impacted her greatly during her time at the university.

Always passionate about journalism, Fasone had been working on newspaper staffs since the eighth grade, and was delighted to be the Editorial Editor for The Montclarion here at Montclair State University.

When asked about her experience at Montclair State University, Fasone speaks highly of the school. “I always talk about Montclair State University to my network of friends and family” and adds, “I am grateful to Montclair State University for preparing me for 39 years of experience in my industry – thankfully, without much interruption.”

Fasone also commented on the exciting expansions that are taking place here on campus, such as the partnership with NJTV and the announcement of the new School of Communication and Media.  A local resident, Fasone says, “I live two miles from campus, so I intend to keep my eye on all that” and adds, “I always knew Montclair was going to do it.”

Fasone attended Montclair State University during what she recalls as an exhilarating time. “The late 60’s and 70’s were a challenging time, and our beliefs and purposes were challenged.” However, she describes the campus as an invigorating environment, “We were not sure what tomorrow would bring, but we knew it would be exciting.”

Her great experiences at Montclair State University are not the only reasons that she holds the university close to her heart.  According to Fasone, attending Montclair State University was “always sort of a family tradition”. Her uncle, Ralph Vernacchia, was a professor in the Art Department for thirty years, and many of her cousins, with great accomplishments of their own, attended as well.

With plans to follow in her family’s footsteps, Fasone intended to attend Montclair State University immediately after high school. However, her plans changed when her father passed away near the time of her high school graduation. Not knowing what the future held for her family, Fasone decided to attend a junior college before finally attending Montclair State to be part of, as she describes, a “large college experience”.

Fasone greatly admires her alma mater and credits her time here to much of her success. “Montclair State University energized me and gave me confidence that I could compete in the field.”

Fasone offers one last piece of advice that she took away from her experiences at Montclair State University, “If you’re prepared and you work hard, then you experience longevity. Montclair State prepared me.”