The Hills Team Up For Charity


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The Hills celebrating Fred Hill, Sr.'s 1,000th win in 2010. (Photo courtesy Rutgers University)

If you have spent any time in Verona, you probably know that the Hill family is passionate about sports and education. What you may not know is that they have recently taken that passion to a new level, creating a foundation to benefit at-risk youth and cystic fibrosis, a disease that has touched the Hill clan. Team Hill Foundation is getting down to business by throwing a basketball beefsteak dinner pegged to the March Madness final four.

For those of you who don’t know the Hill family, a bit of introduction is in order. Fred Hill, Sr. is the head baseball coach at Rutgers University, who last year won his 1,000th career game. His wife Evelyn was Verona’s town clerk for many years, and the senior Hills are long-time residents of Verona. Among their children are Nancy Hill Apisa, a first-grade teacher at Laning Avenue elementary school. Karen Hill Jandoli is the owner of the Dekko & Co. salon opposite Verona Park. Jimmy Hill is the co-owner of Lakeside Deli, O’Neil’s Pub, Eight Hills Caterers and the force behind Fred Hill Sports Academy, and Linda Hill Boyd works for him. Tracey Hill works for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, but she still manages to spend time around Verona. Ditto Fred Hill, Jr. ,  the former basketball coach at Rutgers. Team Hill Foundation also includes one Hill not directly tied to Verona: Brian Hill. The brother of Fred Hill Sr., he is an assistant coach of the Detroit Pistons.

One of Brian Hill’s daughters has cystic fibrosis, he has long been involved with raising money to fund research into that disease. Team Hill Foundation will continue that work, but it will also develop an effort that Fred Hill, Jr. calls a “playbook for life”. “We want to help inner city kids get a blueprint for success through education, social programs and motivational materials,” he says. He hastens to add that although he and his father have both coached young people from urban areas, this will be a broad-based program for kids with different interests, not just sports.

The Team Hill Foundation intends to continue the golf fund raisers that Fred Hill, Jr. was involved with at Rutgers.
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But sports is a draw, and around this time of year there’s nothing bigger than March Madness. The Team Hill Foundation Basketball Beefsteak will be held at Fairleigh Dickinson University’s Rothman Center in Hackensack on Saturday, April 2, from 6 to 11 p.m. Guests will watch the NCAA basketball semifinals over dinner and there will also be live auctions and something billed as a “super reverse” 50/50. Tickets are just $50 and if you’re interested, you can book your tickets here.

“It’s going to be a great night for hoop junkies,” says Fred Hill, Jr.

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Virginia Citrano
Virginia Citrano
Virginia Citrano grew up in Verona. She moved away to write and edit for The Wall Street Journal’s European edition, Institutional Investor, Crain’s New York Business and Since returning to Verona, she has volunteered for school, civic and religious groups, served nine years on the Verona Environmental Commission and is now part of Sustainable Verona. She co-founded MyVeronaNJ in 2009. You can reach Virginia at [email protected]


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