For the first time the public got to hear from 10 of the 14 candidates seeking a place on the 9-member Middletown Township Board of Education at a candidates forum at the Middletown Arts Center.
The event, sponsored by Middletown Mornings public interest group, attracted nearly two dozen attendees. It is the first of three forums planned in Middletown. Organizer Stephanie Murray, who also serves on the 5-member Middletown Township Committee, said it will be hard for voters to sort out who is competing against whom for the contested three 3-year terms and the single one-year unexpired term. (There is no contest for the two, unexpired 2-year terms). "It is such a large ballot," she said.
After introducing themselves and talking about their qualifications, the candidates were asked for their views on subjects like redistricting and how to balance savings with district needs. The candidates showed they had more in common than differences. Their responses were largely were similar: as expected, every candidate is for putting kids first, transparency of finances, and cutting where necessary -- with community input.
Not present at the hour-long morning debate was three candidates for the three-year term: Leonora E. Caminiti (I), Richard G. Campbell, and James Cody (I). Also absent was Drew Wilson, one of six candidates for the one-year unexpired term.
Flip through the photos for highlights from the candidates statements, and see the ballot below. You can find profiles of those who have filled out candidate questionnaires on Patch by clicking on their names.
Board of Education:
Three-Year, Full Term Candidates (Vote for three)
- Leonora E. Caminiti, Lombardi Court (incumbent)
- Richard G. Campbell, Radcliffe Drive, Lincroft
- James Cody, Whispering Pines Drive, Lincroft (incumbent)
- Michael A. Donlon, Broadway, Leonardo (incumbent)
- Joan Minnuies, Bray Avenue, Port Monmouth (incumbent)
- Robert J. Superti, Oakwood Road, Leonardo
Two-Year Unexpired Term Candidates (Vote for two)
- Ernest Donnelly, Redfield Road, Lincroft
- Susan Griffin, Holland Road, Middletown (incumbent)
One-Year Unexpired Term Candidates (Vote for one)
- Shane D. Overgaard, East Road, Belford
- Michael Craig, Renier Ct, Middletown
- Drew Wilson, Appleton Ave, Leonardo
- John Bennett Jr., Wilson Ave. Port Monmouth
- Barry Allen Travis Jr. Stephenville Blvd.
- Helene A. Henkel, Jefferson Street