WARREN, NJ - The Warren Township Committee accepted the resignation of one of its members on Thursday night and unanimously approved naming open space in her honor.
A 23 year veteran township committeewoman and resident of Warren Township since 1975, Carolann Garafola has resigned effective June 1. Garafola said after the meeting that she,” had hoped to finish out 2019, but it just isn’t working out that way. We sold our house in 10 days.” 2019 is the final year of her eighth three-year term on the Township Committee. Garafola has served as mayor six times and also served on the Warren Township Board of Education from 1989 to 1992.
Garafola and artist husband Ralph will be moving to Florida permanently, however, Garafola will remain as a consultant at Mount Bethel Village in Warren where she currently serves as Executive Director.
The committee stunned Garafola by dedicating open space near her former home as “Carolann Garafola Woods,” consisting of approximately 93-acres of wooded land that was acquired for open space in May 2007. The land has access from Crest Lane, Crown Drive and Saw Mill Road and is unbuildable they said.
“I’m just absolutely stunned,” Garafola said. “You bring me to tears.”
Deputy Mayor Michael “Mick”Marion, led the meeting in Mayor Gary DiNardo’s absence and said,”this is one of the most caring, hard-working people you will ever meet in your life.” The committee and all assembled gave Garafola a standing ovation.
Garafola brought laughter to the meeting when she seconded the motion accepting her resignation. See here.
First to speak, Committeeman George Lazo said he worked with Township Administrator Mark Krane to get the ball rolling on naming the open space for Garafola, and said she is an “extraordinary woman,” who “had a significant impact on my life.”
“ That’s the thing about Carolann, she keeps everyone engaged....You’ve always fought for the best for everyone,” said Committeeman Victor Sordillo. “I hope we can fill that gap.” Sordillo and Garafola have served on the Township Committee together for 19 years and he said she is like a sister to him.
Warren resident George Vetter thanked Garafola for her service an leadership of the Township.
All on the committee said they would have more to say at a later date.
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