BERNARDS TOWNSHIP, NJ - The Somerset County Federation of Republican Women has announced that Bernards Township Committeewoman Carol Bianchi, who has also served as township mayor, is the recipient of the 2018 Millicent Fenwick Award. She will be honored at the Bridgewater Manor on May 16.

Carol Bianchi, a Bernards Township Committeewoman since 2013, exemplifies and epitomizes Republican ideals and is a role model for women, the announcement said. Those roles also include working as a volunteer in Bernards schools and chairing the Bernards Township Municipal Alliance Against Substance Abuse.

This award is presented annually by the organization for Distinguished Public Service to acknowledge and recognize "those women who have dedicated their lives to providing outstanding public service to others."  The Millicent Fenwick award also reflects the federation’s intent to ensure that the achievements of these women are recorded in history, the announcement said. 

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Millicent Fenwick, a four-time U.S. Congressional representative for New Jersey and prominent citizen of Bernardsville, is the award's namesake. The patrician and versatilely talented Fenwick, a unique leader in New Jersey and in Congressional history, was described by the federation as "always the lady." Fenwick was an effective leader in New Jersey and in Congress, and became known on a national stage for the work she did, and for her unique personality.

"Carol Bianchi’s strengths mirror Congresswoman Fenwick’s, including dedication to family, self-reliance, industriousness, strong work ethic, free enterprise, capitalism, volunteerism, good character and stalwart Republican principles that respect freedom from intrusive government," the federation said in the announcement.

Bianchi already was awarded the Somerset County Outstanding Woman of the Year from the Somerset County Commission on the Status of Women for government service and the Somerset County Governing Officials Association Outstanding Elected Official of the Year in 2016.  

Bianchi was Bernards Township's deputy mayor in 2015 and township mayor in 2016. Prior to serving on the Township Committee, Bianchi volunteered in the township's schools, including as President of the William Annin Middle School (WAMS) Athletic Organization and on the WAMS PTO board.

Bianchi began her career as a legal publisher, and while working full time, attended Seton Hall Law School, graduating magna cum laude in 1992. She also is a 2010 graduate of Leadership Somerset.  

Involvement in Bernards Township citizen group to stop contaminated soil coming into quarry

Bianchi path to public service in government gained momentum in 2008 when she helped spearhead a citizens group in Bernards Township to monitor and successfully stop the importation of contaminated fill to the Millington Quarry and to advocate for state Department of Environmental Protection oversight.

Bianchi then served on the Environmental Commission and Zoning Board of Adjustment prior to being selected as the first female chairperson of the Bernards Township Planning Board in 2013. Bianchi had previously chaired the Bernards Township Municipal Alliance against Substance Abuse.

Additionally, Bianchi is very active in Somerset County through various leadership roles, collaborating and advocating for the business and economic interests of the County and State. She serves as the co-chairperson of the Somerset County Employer Legislative Committee (ELC) since 2015, and currently as President of the Somerset County Governing Officials Association (SCGOA), having previously served in various roles. She also has served as the co-chairperson of the Legislative Affairs Committee for the Somerset County Business Partnership.

Bianchi serves on the Board of Governors for the New Jersey Federation of Republican Women and continues to serve as an active campaign volunteer for Republican candidates on the local through national level. A firm believer in ground-level campaigning, Bianchi walks extensively, door-to-door, in every election cycle for the Republican candidates.

Married to Rich Bianchi for over 28 years, Carol has four children; Rita, Nolan, Michael, and Caroline ranging in ages from 6th grade through college.  

Bianchi to be honored at Bridgewater Manor dinner; public invited

The federation will congratulate Bianchi and invite the community to her Award Ceremony Dinner, scheduled to be held on Wednesday evening, May 16, at the Bridgewater Manor at 1251 US Highway 202/206, Bridgewater.

An addition to the evening will include a scholarship to be awarded to a deserving RVCC female student through our Rose McConnell Scholarship Fund. Cocktails will begin at 5:30 p.m. and the program at 7 p.m.

Tickets should be purchased in advance (Reservations for Members: $75 and Non-members: $85) Checks should be made payable to “SCFRW” and mailed to Carol Dragon, 66 High Pond Lane, Bedminster, NJ  07921. Opportunities for event sponsorships and ad journal advertising are available. Those with questions should email Cathy Callahan 

The Somerset County Federation’s says its mission is to energize Republican women by giving them the tools, the contacts, and exposure to the political process that will enable and empower them to command any position of leadership of their choosing.  

"There is no better time for women to significantly influence the New Jersey political scene, and no better place than Somerset County. The time to move forward is now," the federation said. The group's Facebook page is at