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Jon Bon Jovi Opens JBJ Soul Kitchen at Rutgers Newark to Help Fight Food Insecurity

Alexandra Hill

New Jersey's own rock legend, Jon Bon Jovi, was on hand today for the opening of his new JBJ Soul Kitchen restaurant at Rutgers University-Newark.  


This marks the first time his nonprofit restaurant chain will be located on a college campus, helping to ensure that students struggling with food security don't go hungry.

There are no prices on the menu; patrons can pay it forward by making a minimum donation of 12 dollars, and those unable to pay can volunteer at the restaurant or elsewhere on campus, a model that has led to the success of their two other locations.

“Over the last decade the Soul Kitchen restaurants in Red Bank and Toms River have provided well over one hundred thousand meals. It’s been a passion project for us for a decade now.”

Credit Alexandra Hill / News
The kitchen inside the JBJ Soul Kitchen at Rutgers Newark.

Dorothea Hurley, Bon Jovi’s wife, is the cofounder of Soul Kitchen.

“Recognizing that food insecurity is a critical issue facing many college students and one that hits home here at Rutgers, when gourmet dining came to us over a year ago with the idea to open a Soul Kitchen, we jumped on the chance to make an impact.”

Officials say one in three students attending a four-year college struggle with the issue of food insecurity, and more than fifty percent of students at the Rutgers-Newark campus receive financial aid.

Alexandra Hill began her work with WBGO in June of 2012 in the news department. A graduate of the Rutgers Newark journalism program, Alexandra was also a student of WBGO News Director Doug Doyle. Alexandra has since become the lead general assignment reporter, afternoon news anchor, and producer of the award winning live call in show Newark Today. Since working for WBGO Alexandra has covered politics in and around Newark including the 2014 mayoral campaign of Mayor Ras Baraka as well as the senate campaigns of former Newark Mayor and now U.S. Senator Cory Booker in both 2013 and 2014. Alexandra also covers a host of human-interest stories, and has been recognized by the New York Association Of Black Journalists for her piece entitled Sheltering Newark’s Homeless.