March 5, 1910 – September 2, 2003

A favorite “Sister of the Church” at North Branched Reformed Church, Ethel was elder, lector, nursing home worship leader, prayer group member, adult educator, volunteer, confident, and friend to hundreds. She was also an excellent business woman. Her career at AT&T spanned 38 years. She worked her way up from stenographer to office manager to chief administrator for the Senior HR Executive. She recruited, trained and supervised teams of secretaries and administrative assistants.

Ethel Trask KeinzEthel loved the business world and treasured working downtown in Manhattan. She chose the NYC business world over college when she graduated from high school—and never looked back. People who worked with her say she was MBA material and would have managed major departments had she taken that career path.

At North Branch, she started the Bridgeway Senior Citizen Caring and Sharing Ministry, leading worship services every week for 20 years. She was also instrumental in starting the Kirskside Ministry, a home for seniors affiliated with North Branch Reformed Church. She managed the annual Kirkside Rummage Sale for 17 years, collecting thousands of dollars for charity. Ethel was well known in Central Jersey. She volunteered at New Brunswick Theological Seminary and in May, 2000, she received the Volunteer STAR Award from the United Way of Somerset County. Her editing skills were remarkable as she helped regularly with the NBRC newsletter, and from 1993-1998, played a significant role as editor for Tom Bachhuber’s book, The Best Graduate Business Schools, published by Simon & Schuster.

Born and growing up in Ridgefield Park, New Jersey, she moved to Branchburg in 1961 and lived humbly in the Edgewood Terrace Mobile Home Park until her death at age 93, September 2, 2003. Perhaps she is best remembered as lector for her clear articulate readings, with a distinguished New York pitch. In 2002, she approached Tom Bachhuber and Scott Pontier with the idea of providing an endowment for a Center for Life Transitions. She contributed to the incorporation process and served on the Board of Directors until her death. She was a regular and favorite lector on many Sundays, reading the lessons in a clear, eloquent manner with a slight New York lilt. One of her many gifts was connecting to people of all ages and personalities—the young and old alike. Perhaps because she was truly ageless, Psalm 91 was her favorite.

…Because she loves me says the Lord, I will rescue her
I will protect her for she acknowledges my name
She will call upon me and I will answer her
I will be with her in trouble
I will honor her and deliver her
With long life will I satisfy her
And show her my salvation.

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