Theodore “Ted” Gershon

Theodore “Ted” Gershon of Princeton Junction, husband, father of three, and grandfather to seven, passed away on Saturday, January 1, at the age of 76.  Born and raised in New Brunswick, Ted had a lifelong commitment to public education, a great knowledge of music, a strong commitment to family, and an unrivaled gift for storytelling.

Ted’s mother helped run one of the most popular restaurants in New Jersey in the 1950’s and 60’s, where early on, Ted was introduced to countless colorful figures. Ted and his sister Diane benefited growing up- and later in adulthood- from uncles, aunts and cousins rich in humor.  With a father who was an accomplished professional musician and fellow drummer, Ted was working professionally as a musician while still a student at New Brunswick High School.  He continued to play countless jobs as he worked his way through Jersey City State College and then, as a graduate student at Rutgers.  He married the love of his life, Kathy, in August of 1969, and welcomed sons Brian, Michael and Jason thereafter.  

Early in his career, Ted taught students with special needs.Inspired to be an advocate for students, Ted accepted a position as Deputy Assistant Commissioner of Education for the New Jersey Department of Education, where he made great contributions to workforce development, improving career opportunities for students with disabilities, and the education of prison inmates.

After leaving the State, Ted worked in various administrative roles in education before accepting a position at Columbia University.  At Columbia University, he served as Associate Vice President, Special Advisor, Workforce Development. He continued to consult on education and workforce development issues until the last weeks of his life.  This tied in to one of Ted’s other great passions: politics. Ted was active in the Democratic Party throughout his life, attending several presidential conventions. He combined his passion for politics and education by working with Democratic office holders on the state and national level to better serve the educational needs of underserved communities.  His counsel was eagerly sought -Ted advised members of Congress, served as an educational consultant to the White House Empowerment Zone Task Force, and advised nonprofit organizations on educational issues.

Ted and Kathy had a diverse circle of friends, ranging from ones they had known for decades to ones they met in the last year of Ted’s life.  One of his greatest passions was spending time withhis sons and seven grandsons – Evan, Eric, Peter, Joseph, Daniel, Jeffrey and James.  Ted was often found in his yard, surrounded by family and friends, telling colorful stories, sharing insights on politics and smoking a cigar.  Long meals at Ted and Kathy’s house always featured amazing food and great laughs.

Visiting hours will be on Wednesday, January 5, 2022 from 11 AM to 12 Noon. A funeral service will be held at 12 with burial to follow at Tappan Cemetery, Tappan, NY.

Donations in his memory may be made to:

West Windsor Fire & EMS, 271 Clarksville Road, PO Box #38, West Windsor, NJ 08550, Attention: Chief Lynch

Mercer Street Friends, 151 Mercer Street, Trenton, NJ 08611 (


  1. Rosemary Cummons

    Ted you will be greatly missed by your family, and all the friends who loved you and your great sense of humor.

  2. To all the Gershon Family, especially his beloved wife Kathy, there are no words to express my deepest sympathy to you all. I cannot even begin to know the depth of your sorrow. The world has lost one of the GREAT …
    Ted will be missed more than anyone I know. All the valuable work he did in the world to help others throughout his life, especially helping to give opportunity to others for a good life will go on for generations to follow, the ripple effect will live beyond us all.
    Kathy and Ted had one of the greatest love stories, a joy always to behold the love, dedication, and joy between them through the years. Whatever the situation joy filled, challenging or sad they met it together with their everlasting love of each other, family, and friends.
    A true family man, all one had to do was mention his grandchildren and Ted smiled one of the brightest smiles, it would light up the room.
    I was one of the lucky ones to have been blessed by that love, concern and help many times, Ted will forever hold a very special place in my heart.
    Rest in Peace Ted you were greatly loved Loretta Bleier

  3. Angel L Pineiro

    Rest in peace, my friend, you will be so missed. It was an honor for me to be in your presence and to have had the privilege of working with you for so many years to help the underserved student community. I will treasure those moments.

    My deepest condolences to the Gershon family. I pray for God’s comfort. Cherish the everlasting memories you have of him and let them always bring a warm smile to your faces.

  4. Heidi Greenfield

    I did not know Mr. Gershon, but I have met his son Jason. In knowing Jason and what a kind, loving, generous, smart man Jason is I can only imagine how wonderful his father was. I have no words to fill the gap left by the loss the family is feeling. I can only express my love, and sorry.

  5. Arlene Knapp Munkacsi

    I was so sorry to read of Ted’s passing. I will always have happy memories of our friendship during our teenage years! My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

  6. So grateful to have met and worked with Ted. It was an amazing time at Columbia during the ULURP for Manhattanville and CU’s expanded campus. I learned so much from Ted about community building, connections and also jazz music. All the best to Kathy and their children during this time.

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