Class of 2015 alumnus Brianna Armstead, back right, with students from Schools No. 1, 9, and 10 that she helped get onto an episode of the “Tamron Hall” show, where she is an associate producer. 


Some students from Schools No. 1, 9 and 10 recently got a chance to play dress-up like few children do, thanks to some help from a recent Linden High School graduate.

Brianna Armstead, LHS Class of 2015 and an associate producer with the “Tamron Hall” show on ABC, showcased the Linden students during the show’s Halloween Legends Ball, which also featured legendary singer Chaka Khan.

Armstead is a 2019 graduate of Rutgers University, having majored in journalism and digital media. March is Youth Art Month, celebrating art education nationwide.


Ethan Buchanan, a fourth-grader at School No. 9, was one of those featured on the award-nominated “Tamron Hall” show.

“Ethan is a natural performer,” said his mother, Erika Morales. “The opportunity to become Mohammed Ali on national television inspired him on so many levels. This was an enjoyable and unforgettable moment for Ethan, and I am thankful to Brianna Armstead for inspiring and giving our son this wonderful opportunity.”

Leah Pershaud, also a School No. 9 fourth-grader, portrayed TV host and actress Whoopi Goldberg on the show.

“Appearing on national television can be nerve-racking, but Ms. Armstead’s special kind way of motivating each youngster in her care gave each child the confidence needed to walk on stage and perform,” said her mother, Tina Persaud. “This was a memorable and a great time for Leah.”

Ashley DeSa Mooney said Armstead inspired her daughter, School No. 1 first-grader Lily Mooney, to become Madonna.

“What an amazing experience,” she said. “Lily had a blast. Linden Public Schools’ talents were definitely in the house! My daughter immediately connected with Brianna and stayed by her side for the entire time. I am truly grateful for this opportunity of a lifetime.”

Marvin Davis, 8, and Aliyana Davis, 10, of School No. 1 became Elvis Presley and Tina Turner on the show.

“I am beyond thankful for the opportunity afforded to my two children by Brianna Armstead, a beautiful professional young lady,” said their mother, Yolanda Casey-Davis. “It’s nice to see that she has not forgotten where she came from by giving back to her community. They both had a wonderful time filming the show and spending time in New York City.”