BLOOMFIELD, NJ -- Township Council members Jenny Mundell, Nicholas Joanow and Sarah Cruz were officially sworn-in to office last night at a ceremony held at a packed Council chamber with family, friends and Essex County elected officials and political leaders in attendance. Each of the Council members were elected in November, and they represent one of the Township's three wards, respectively. Mundell, Joanow and Cruz received thunderous applause from attendees and each spoke about their goals for the new term, which will last for the next three years.
"Serving this community as a Council member has been incredibly rewarding and I am looking forward to continuing to be an active and involved public servant over the next three years," said Councilwoman Mundell, who represents the First Ward and will now begin a full term after being appointed to an open seat on the Council last year. "I would like to thank my family for their incredible support as I've undertaken this journey, and I would encourage everyone to take the opportunity to get more involved in our town and help create the change we all want to see."
Attendees at the ceremony included Mayor Michael Venezia, Councilwoman Wartyna "Nina" Davis, Councilman Ted Gamble, Freeholder Carlos Pomares, Essex County Executive Joe DiVincenzo, Essex County Democratic Chairman LeRoy Jones, Senator Ron Rice Sr., Assemblyman Ralph Caputo, Assemblywoman Cleopatra Tucker, Freeholder Director Brendan Gill, Freeholder Patricia Sebold, Freeholder Leonard Luciano, State Director for US Senator Cory Booker George Helmy, and others.
"I have seen firsthand over the years how this community has become an even better place to live and raise a family, and I am excited to continue working alongside Mayor Venezia and our team to make it the best it can possibly be," said Councilman Joanow, who represents the Second Ward and will now begin his fourth term in office. "I would like to thank the residents of the Second Ward of Bloomfield for their continued confidence in me and I pledge to work hard to live up to that faith."
The three newly-elected Council members join a governing body that has produced significant accomplishments in recent years, from stabilizing property taxes to drastically enhancing public safety to investing in open space and improved recreational programs, among many other successful initiatives.
"I am so proud and humbled to have the opportunity to give back to Bloomfield as a Council member," said Councilwoman Cruz, who will begin her first term representing the Third Ward. "I moved here after college because I knew this was a community where people cared about each other and where the local government provided the kinds of services people need, and as a Council member my focus will be on continuing and improving those essential areas like our parks, recreation, health and senior programs."
Other local officials in attendance included Township Administrator Matt Watkins, Public Safety Director Samuel DeMaio, Township Clerk Louise Palagano and several other department heads and municipal employees. The ceremony included an Invocation by Rev. Vernon C. Miller of New Light Baptist Church and a Benediction by Rev. Joel Daniel Hubbard, III of Park United Methodist Church, as well as remarks from Mayor Venezia and other elected leaders.