I am writing to endorse Jennifer Blumenstock, Marc Lazarow, and Russ Graham for Garwood Council.  As one of the newest members of council, I am proud and honored to serve the borough with all three of these individuals.  They come to council with their own insights, perspectives, and opinions on the issues that Garwood faces, and they keep an open mind, engage in respectful conversations of the issues, and make decisions that are in the best interest of Garwood.  They welcome input from the residents of our borough and they take it to heart, whether it’s the Garwood citizen’s advisory panel making recommendations, or a resident coming to the mic at a meeting, or receiving an email from a resident.  They exhibit what is best about our borough and what we expect from our elected officials.


During Councilwoman Blumenstock and Council President Lazarow’s first term as council members, they have accomplished so much.  They’ve worked diligently to return civility to council meetings.  Prior to taking my seat, I would watch in the audience at how some past members made the meetings contentious and argumentative, and I would see Jennifer Blumenstock and Marc Lazarow rise above it, keep things civil, and do what is best for Garwood.  Through their efforts on council, they were able to revitalize Hartman Park and use a significant amount of grant money to do so.  As a parent of two children, I can tell you they did an outstanding job.  Seeing the need for the park to be redone and then working to find grants to offset the cost of doing so is exactly what our elected officials on council should be doing.  In addition, they’ve made capital purchases so that our borough departments have the equipment they need to do their jobs and provide the services that our residents need.  They’ve done all of this and kept a watchful eye on the borough’s budget, going line by line making sure that every dollar being requested and appropriated is necessary, and cutting when they see it is not.  When compared to some of the other municipalities in Union County, Garwood has one of the lowest debt ratios, and they plan on keeping it that way.


While Councilman Russ Graham just came onto council this year, he immediately hit the ground running.  As part of the revitalization of Hartman Park, he heard residents discussing the lack of shade at the park, and he worked on getting shading installed at the park and finding grant opportunities to fund it.  I’ve personally worked with him on the Laws and Licenses committee and I find him to be insightful, intelligent, and willing to listen to another point of view before making a decision. 

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For all three of these individuals, it’s not just about the council meetings twice a month; they give so much more to the borough.  They volunteer with the Garwood Green Team to beautify our town and get information out there about taking care of the environment.  They volunteer with the Education Foundation of Garwood to raise money for educational projects and scholarships that benefit the children of our borough.  They organize events like Touch-A-Truck which was an amazing event that so many people had fun at.  They work hard on council and in our community, they put Garwood first, and that is why I support them and endorse them.  I wholeheartedly encourage everyone to vote Blumenstock, Lazarow, and Graham for Garwood Council on November 5th



Sean Benoit

Garwood Councilman (D)