UNION COUNTY, NJ — In addition to state, county and local municipal elections, Tuesday, Nov. 8, saw board of education candidates square off and seek votes. Although all the districts reported 100 percent of the ballots cast early, by mail, and by machine on Election Day, there may be other votes still to come, so these results are unofficial until Monday, Nov. 21, when the election is certified.
“The county clerk’s website essentially is designed for the Election Day machine results,” said Nicole DiRado, administrator of the Union County Board of Elections, in an interview with Union County LocalSource on Monday, Nov. 14. “Of the 422 districts in Union County, the county clerk is reporting that the districts have returned their ballots. That doesn’t include outstanding or provisional ballots. It’s my understanding that the results on her website include vote-by-mail ballots and early voting. One hundred percent refers to the voting machines on Election Day.”
The following results are as of Friday, Nov. 11.
Vice President Angela Penna, 2,614 votes, or 19.19 percent; challenger Dipti Khanna, 2,321 votes, or 17.04 percent; and challenger Gale D. Bradford, 2,053 votes, or 15.07 percent, defeated challenger Natasha Pogrebinsky Joly, 1,734 votes, or 12.73 percent; challenger Ayana Joseph, 1,654 votes, or 12.14 percent; incumbent Sai Bhargavi Akiri, 1,622 votes, or 11.91 percent; challenger Douglas Grober, 1,085 votes, or 7.97 percent; and challenger Neil D. Hemann, 497 votes, or 3.65 percent, to fill three open seats, each a three-year term. There were 40 write-in ballots for a total of 13,620 votes. President Michael D’Aquila did not run for reelection. Sarah Achenbach, Jodi Cear, Todd A. Najarian, Margit Erika Pedraza and Herbert Waddell withdrew from the race.
Board of Education Vice President Thomas Lewis, 3,541 votes, or 34.98 percent; board member Lorraine J. Aklonis, 3,624 votes, or 35.80 percent; and challenger Kristen Hickman, 2,861 votes, or 28.26 percent, ran unopposed for the three open seats with three-year terms. There were 97 write-in ballots for a total of 10,123 votes.
Incumbent Brett Dreyer, 6,090 votes, or 28.37 percent; incumbent Patrick Lynch, 4,846 votes, or 22.58 percent; and challenger Susan Shaw, 5,940 votes, or 27.67 percent, defeated challenger Thomas Grasso, 3,312 votes, or 15.43 percent, and challenger Francis N. Riccio III, 1,231 votes, or 5.74 percent, for three open seats with three-year terms. There were 45 write-in ballots, for a total of 21,464 votes. Challenger Jessica Soltys, 3,563 votes, or 43.75 percent, defeated challenger Christine Bradley, 2,495 votes, or 30.64 percent, and challenger Brian Lopez, 2,072 votes, or 25.44 percent, to claim a vacant seat with a term that expires December 2024, with 14 write-in ballots for a total of 8,144 votes. Nicole Sherrin Kessler did not seek reelection. Brian T. McCarthy withdrew from the race.
Incumbent Stanley Neron, 5,918 votes, or 32.01 percent; incumbent Diane Barbosa, 6,299 votes, or 34.07 percent; and challenger Isaias Rivera, 5,842 votes, or 31.60 percent, ran unopposed for three open seats with three-year terms. There were 431 write-in ballots for a total of 18,490 votes.
Incumbent Amy Winkler defeated challenger Gary Morris, 1,844 votes to 881 votes, or 67.05 percent to 32.04 percent, with 25 write-in ballots for a total of 2,750 votes. Fanwood has two seats with three-year terms on the Scotch Plains–Fanwood Board of Education, one of which is open.
Challenger Maureen “Mo” Crawford, 988 votes, or 42.70 percent, and challenger Linda Koenig, 904 votes, or 39.07 percent, ran unopposed for two of the three open seats, each with three-year terms.
Incumbent Vice President Laquana Best, 2,099 votes, or 17.84 percent; incumbent Donald Howard Jr., 2,043 votes, or 17.36 percent; and incumbent Pinchas Shapiro, 1,998 votes, or 16.98 percent, defeated challenger Oluwashola “Shola” Adedeji, 1,787 votes, or 15.19 percent; challenger Al-Nisa S. Tucker, 1,898 votes, or 16.13 percent; and challenger Derek J. Vertreese, 1,913 votes, or 16.26 percent, for three open three-year terms, with 30 write-in ballots for a total of 11,768 votes.
Incumbent Robert Beiner, 1,036 votes, or 27.54 percent; incumbent Anthony Laudati, 1,311 votes, or 34.85 percent; and challenger John Ferreira, 1,375 votes, or 36.55 percent, ran unopposed for three three-year terms. Incumbent Mark Jankiewicz withdrew.
Brianna M. Armstead, 4,860 votes, or 35.48 percent; Dayanara Rosado Quezada, 4,291 votes, or 31.33 percent; and Sasquia Carrillo, 4,199 votes, or 30.66 percent, ran unopposed for three three-year terms, with 347 write-in ballots for a total of 13,687 votes.
Incumbent William “Bill” Dillon, 1704 votes, or 32.86 percent; incumbent Carmine Venes, 1,740 votes, or 33.55 percent; and challenger Michael Goodwin, 1,683 votes, or 32.45 percent, ran unopposed for three three-year terms, with 59 write-in ballots for a total of 5,186 votes. President James Ruban Jr. didn’t run for reelection.
Incumbent Bernadette C. Cuccaro, 2,676 votes, or 32.33 percent, and incumbent Joseph F. Walsh, 2,228 votes, or 26.92 percent, defeated challenger Kristen Empson-Hayden, 2,155 votes, or 26.04 percent, and Brian R. Gardner, 1,185 votes, or 14.32 percent, for two three-year terms, with 33 write-in ballots for a total of 8,277 votes.
Azim A. Gray, 3,629 votes, or 18.52 percent; Willie Hembree, 3,680 votes, or 18.78 percent; and Shonté Smith, 3,850 or 19.65 percent, defeated Lynn Anderson-Person, 2,877 votes, or 14.68 percent; Carmencita Pile, 2,729 votes, or 13.93 percent; and Shatera Smith, 2,748 votes, or 14.02 percent, for three three-year terms, with 84 write-in ballots for a total of 19,597 votes.
Incumbent Laura Giacobbe, 5,471 votes, or 36.60 percent; challenger Joe Toma, 4,665 votes, or 31.21 percent; and challenger Timothy Antisz, 4,606 votes, or 30.81 percent, ran unopposed for three three-year terms, with 206 write-in ballots for a total of 14,948 votes.
Member Angela Alvey-Wimbush, 1,884 votes, or 18.07 percent; President Courtney A. Washington, 1,880 votes, or 18.03 percent; and challenger Leslie Ann Woody, 1,839 votes, or 17.64 percent, defeated challenger Shondelle C. Wills-Bryce, 191 votes, or 1.83 percent; challenger Georgette Bradshaw, 1,546 votes, or 14.83 percent; challenger Johnathan Frazer, 1,525 votes, or 14.63 percent; and Stephanie Falana, 1,513 votes, or 14.51 percent, for three three-year terms, with 49 write-in ballots for a total of 10,427 votes.
Challenger Cindi Mago, 1,330 votes, or 19.58 percent; challenger Chris Monroe, 1,251 votes, or 18.42 percent; and challenger Jennifer Makar, 1,186 votes, or 17.46 percent, defeated challenger Lucy Figueiredo, 946 votes, or 13.93 percent; challenger Paula Ramos-Santiago, 927 votes, or 13.65 percent; incumbent Michael-Ann Regan, 788 votes, or 11.60 percent; and challenger Vruttesha Vyas, 329 votes, or 4.84 percent, for three three-year terms. President Loren Harms, 1,534 votes, or 57.50 percent, and challenger Christopher Shoemaker, 594 votes, or 22.26 percent, defeated challenger Ursima Edwina Calenicoff, 522 votes, or 19.57 percent, for two two-year unexpired terms, with 18 write-in ballots for a total of 2,668 votes.
There are seven seats with three-year terms on the Scotch Plains–Fanwood Board of Education, two of which are open. Incumbent Stephanie Suriani, 5,569 votes, or 40.44 percent; and incumbent Nancy Norris Bauer, 4,906 votes, or 35.63 percent, defeated challenger John Greenblatt, 3,179 votes, or 23.08 percent, for two three-year terms, with 117 write-in ballots for a total of 13,771 votes.
Incumbent Meredith E. Murphy, 2,596 votes, or 19.85 percent; challenger Jerome “Jerry” Fernandez, 2,453 votes, or 18.76 percent; and incumbent Hilary Turnbull, 2,323 votes, or 17.76 percent, defeated challenger Karen Paschkes, 1,870 votes, or 14.30 percent; challenger Omar Shanawani, 1,648 votes, or 12.60 percent; and challenger Adriana C. Silva, 2,136 votes, or 16.33 percent, for three three-year terms, with 53 write-in ballots and a total of 13.079 votes.
President Mary Lynn Williams, 5,940 votes, or 18.60 percent; Vice President Nancy Minneci, 5,695 votes, or 17.83 percent; and challenger Dicxiana Carbonell, 5,391 votes, or 16.88 percent, defeated Guy A. Francis, 4,420 votes, or 13.84 percent; Ronnie McDowell, 4,419 votes, or 13.84 percent; April Y. Carter, 4,128 votes, or 12.93 percent; and Grisel Morales, 1,839 votes, or 5.76 percent for three three-year terms. There were 101 write-in ballots for a total of 31,933 votes. Kevin Costello, Jeffrey P. East, Stefan J. Erwin, Deysi Viviana Fajardo, James Louis, Greg Nasta, Rafael V. Prisco, Jay Spinelli and Wesley Woodford withdrew from the race.
Incumbent Thomas W. Byrne, 320 votes, or 88.89 percent, ran unopposed for one of the three three-year terms, with 40 write-in ballots for a total of 360 votes.