PICTURED: Tabitha LaRocca, a YMCA volunteer and student at Mother Teresa Regional School, is presented the “Knight in Shining Armor Award” at a Rutgers basketball game for her community service efforts at the Y’s Camp Arrowhead. 

Middletown, NJ – Fourteen-year-old Tabitha LaRocca, a member of The Community YMCA Camp Arrowhead Teen Leaders Program, has been selected as a winner of the Johnson & Johnson and Rutgers Athletics “Knight in Shining Armor Award.” The award recognizes young people who go “above and beyond” to help others in their community.

Tabitha was presented the award on Sunday, Dec. 16 at a Rutgers women’s basketball game with over 20 family members, friends and YMCA employees on hand to cheer her efforts.


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“We are proud of Tabitha for receiving well-deserved recognition for taking an active role in helping to strengthen community,” said Rhonda Anderson, President & CEO of The Community YMCA. “She is an outstanding role model and is setting an example of what it means to be socially responsible by serving others.”

A dedicated volunteer in Camp Arrowhead’s Teen Leaders Program, the Middletown teen is “enthusiastic and always willing to donate her time and energy to any of the causes we adopt,” said Camp Director Tricia Cline, who nominated Tabitha for the award. During the summer, as part of “Give Back Days,” Tabitha gave up going on a field trip to volunteer preparing meals for families staying at the Ronald McDonald House in Long Branch. Most recently, Tabitha helped raise over $600 volunteering at a Halloween event at Camp Arrowhead to support children in need of financial assistance to participate at Y summer camp.

Tabitha is an 8th grader at Mother Teresa Regional School in Atlantic Highlands where she is a winning member of the debate team, a leader in the Beta, Mission and Liturgy clubs, a member of the theater and drama club and the basketball team. She is also an alter server at her church.


The Community YMCA President & CEO Rhonda Anderson congratulates Tabitha La Rocca on her community service award.

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Allan Dean

Allan Dean is editor, publisher, and founder of the Atlantic Highlands Herald. Published since 1999 and selected in 2000 by the Borough of Atlantic Highlands as one of their official newspapers, making...