By Art Gallagher
Tara Ryan, 63, of Highlands, succumbed to complications of diabetes on Friday, April 1. Tara was with her loving husband Joe Killeen, and other family members when her time came. Her family and the Highlands community are mourning her loss and celebrating her remarkable life which was devoted to improving the lives of others.
A one term borough councilwoman, Tara was a community leader in Highlands throughout her 21 year residence in the borough. She was courted by both parties to run for council many times before finally agreeing to run as a Democrat in 2012.
She served on the Board of Education of Highlands Elementary School and the Highlands Zoning Board for many years.
For years, Tara’s passionate cause was for Highlands to have its own library. A project she made happen through private fundraising and her persistent and loving advocacy. She realized her dream in 2009 when a room in the borough’s Robert D. Wilson Memorial Community Center became the borough library. Now that the community center has been reopened post Sandy, the borough should name the library room in Tara’s memory.
Throughout her full life Tara was a theater professional, a mediator, an advocate for youth and the less fortunate. As a political leader, she never let partisan disagreements override her genuine relationships with political adversaries. She wouldn’t like the use of the word adversary. We were neighbors who disagreed on some issues.