Joel Scot Naftelberg – Essex News Daily
November 25, 1956 – May 13, 2022
A courageous community pillar to many, Joel Scot Naftelberg passed away Friday, May 13, 2022 at his home in Glen Ridge, New Jersey, surrounded by his family.
Born in Bayside, Queens, Joel was the youngest son of the late Hyman and Frances Naftelberg and spent his formative years in New York; he graduated from Benjamin N. Cardozo High School and received his Bachelor of Business Administration in Marketing Communications from Baruch College.
With a brain naturally adept at sales, marketing, math, and talking to strangers, her career path was non-linear, self-directed, and impressive. During his career transitions, he applied his accumulated skills, passions and instincts, leading to professional business development and marketing roles in the corporate and entertainment industries.
Music has always been at the heart of his life from an early age. With a well-known and celebrated love for The Who and Bruce Springsteen, Joel’s passion for live music was one he was always happy to share, attending gigs as often as he could with his family and friends. friends. His rock ‘n’ roll stories were second to none and his ability to secure the best seats for any venue never failed to deliver or impress.
A lifelong collector, his cars became a focal point when he purchased his first used Mazda Miata around the turn of the century. Over the years he bought, customized, tinkered, obsessed, cleaned, polished and eventually sold so much more. When warmer weather arrived, it could often be seen driving around with the top down, always finding an excuse for a ride, long or short. Even in his last days, he always had his foot on the accelerator.
Joel enjoyed being with and around people, and he spent much of his life serving others. For nearly a decade, he was an organizational leader with Montclair Emergency Services for Hope, Inc., a local faith-based organization dedicated to providing basic and essential services to Montclair’s most vulnerable people. Beyond the pride he felt in planning and guiding the volunteers, he enjoyed meeting the clients at the MESH Café, learning their stories and sharing some of his own.
In the world of anonymous recovery, Joel was infamous, living most of his life humbly through the Twelve Steps and touching the lives of thousands through his own addiction struggles. Her willingness to share herself and tell her own story not only benefited her global community, but also brightened her spirit and faith throughout many chapters of her life, and especially towards the end of it. .
Most recently, Joel was a member of the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Montclair pastoral team and a regular volunteer at the BlueCrest Recovery Center, administering support to others even as his own cancers progressed.
Joel was predeceased by his brother, Steven Naftelberg, and his parents. He is survived by his loving family: his wife, Beth Smith; daughter, Chelsea Naftelberg Williams and son-in-law, Jared Williams; son, Harrison Naftelberg; sister and brother-in-law, Jacqueline Naftelberg Kapnek and Avi Kapnek; sister-in-law Karen Naftelberg; and several nieces and nephews. They will remember his stories, his advice and his laughter for decades.
The family will be hosting a celebration of life service on Sunday, June 19, 2022 at 1:00 p.m. at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation in Montclair, located at 67 Church Street in Montclair, NJ.
In lieu of flowers, donations in Joel’s memory may be sent to:
Unitarian Universalist Congregation in Montclair. https://onrealm.org/uumontclair/-/give/
Scroll down the drop-down menu to select “Gifts and Memorials” and include Joel’s name in the memo. Donors can also mail a check payable to UUCM with Joel’s name in the memo.
BlueCrest Recovery Center, 482 Notch Road, Woodland Park, NJ 07424. Send a check payable to BlueCrest Recovery Center with Joel’s name in the memo.
Montclair Emergency Services for Hope, Inc. PO Box 1919, Montclair, NJ 07042. Send a check payable to MESH, Inc. with Joel’s name in the memo.