• Maria Gatta Lecture Series information

    The Maria Gatta Lecture Series


    Maria Gatta spent her life in public service, working to help connect people across her community. She was a tireless public servant-spending many years teaching in the public school system and serving on the Oceanport Parent-Teacher Organization, Board of Education, Town Council, and as its first female Mayor. Maria was the originator of Oceanport’s Networking Committee-citizens helping citizens- and held two successful “Women’s Day” in 2001 and 2003.


    Born in Little Silver, Maria spent much of her adult life in Oceanport, where she lived with her husband John, of 36 years and a retired School Superintendent. She raised two children, Mary, Director of Research and Development and a Professor at Rutgers University and Michael, a Special Education Teacher for the Long Branch Public School System.


    Maria Gatta is a graduate of the College Misericordia and a former teacher in the Oceanport and Ocean Township School Districts.


    In addition, Maria was a co-owner of Cheers To You! - a gift basket store in Oakhurst. In business over 20 years with her partner, Dee Frankel, the store served as a retail icon known for their personal touch on both their products and their customers.


    While Maria passed away from cancer in 2005, her dedication to community service remains. By partnering with the Oceanport School District, T Maria Gatta, Women in Leadership Assembly Series is a wonderful opportunity for Oceanport Students to learn more about the importance of leadership in their local communities, and to continue Maria’s legacy of public service.